Greetings! This is our weekly GameSided Roundtable feat..."/> Greetings! This is our weekly GameSided Roundtable feat..."/>

GameSided Roundtable: Hype-Deflating Games

2 of 3

Mytheos Holt (Twitter)

Duke. Nukem. Forever.

It is probably unnecessary to explain why this game was underwhelming relative to its hype, given that said hype had been built, destroyed, rebuilt, re-destroyed, re-rebuilt, parodied, and then finally re-re-rebuilt over the course of 14 years. Nothing on earth could have lived up to what the expectation was, even if it had made Bioshock Infinite look like Bayou Billy. Hell, even if it had been the greatest first person shooter ever created, it probably would’ve seemed underwhelming relative to what its massive development time had implied.

But Duke Nukem Forever was a special kind of failure: the kind that makes you wish it had never even existed, so thoroughly did it insult the people who had hoped for it to be good. It was the Pet Sematary of video games — an attempt to resurrect something beloved which ultimately dredged up a feral, twisted, evil mockery of its subject that made you wish that what you loved had stayed dead. Not only that, but that you had died with it. In the words of HP Lovecraft’s immortal description of a walking corpse;

"I cannot even hint what it was like, for it was a compound of all that is unclean, uncanny, unwelcome, abnormal, and detestable. It was the ghoulish shade of decay, antiquity, and desolation; the putrid, dripping eidolon of unwholesome revelation; the awful baring of that which the merciful earth should always hide. God knows it was not of this world—or no longer of this world—yet to my horror I saw in its eaten-away and bone-revealing outlines a leering, abhorrent travesty on the human shape; and in its mouldy, disintegrating apparel an unspeakable quality that chilled me even more."

Change a few words in this description, and you have Duke Nukem Forever summarized perfectly.

It would be unnecessarily cruel to rehash the many things wrong with the game, like the driving controls that seemed to have been programmed to be as functional as Ray Rice’s relationships, the platforming that would probably create a desolate heap of shattered controllers around the nearest wall if anyone cared enough to try to play through it, or the load times which, despite their almost geologic length, still manage to waste the player’s time less than the rest of the game. All I will say is that the game’s paid DLC easily outstrips the game itself, in the same sense that a marathon runner who’s just had his legs broken could outpace a blind toddler. This “game” is a soulless, ugly mistake, built up by years of hype, only to be turned into a cruel joke on every fan who desperately hoped for a resurrection of one of video gaming’s icons.

Like the unfortunate women captured by aliens, fans of the Duke can now only pray for the mercy of a quick death for their hero. Fail to the King, baby.

Georgina Young (Twitter)

Anyone who knows me knows that I am a huge Pokémon fan. Heck the movies still never fail to bring me to tears. While as a child I tore up the competition on the playground, and imported American versions of the second gen to get them just a few weeks early, when the games evolved past the Gameboy Colour I was a bit at a loss.

However, for my 18th birthday I got a DS lite and with it my passion for Pokémon was renewed. I battled my way through Diamond and Pearl, I defeated Platinum and I revelled in the glory that was the Gold and Silver remakes. Deep into my new Pokémon haze, both Pokémon Black and White were announced.

Oh, the power and the glory that could be contained within those games, I watched feverishly as new Pokémon we’re announced, sweaty palmed at a whole new roster. And then it came out, and it was ok. And then they announced they would be making a part 2 instead of their usual vamped up third part, and pretty much all my dreams were dead.