The Playstation 4 is dominating the video game market at the moment. Whether that’s because of the PSVR, the PS4 Pro, or some exciting upcoming games is a mystery to me. However, no matter if you’re an Xbox or Nintendo fan, you can’t help but admit that the PS4 is a good console (and that’s coming from a Nintendo fanboy). It has good processing, nice add-on features, a vast number of games to play, and a decent digital shop experience.
One of the reasons many people choose a PS4 over the Xbox One is on the subject of exclusives. Up to this point, the console has had a good number of them. While a large number are remasters or remakes, the games are still quite excellent. Many of the biggest exclusives for the console have yet to come out, but are well on their way (Horizon Zero Dawn anyone?). Even with so many “redos” the PS4 is winning the “exclusives battle.”
Still, with so many exclusives, there are bound to be some really bad ones in the mix. And believe me when I say that there really, really are. When done properly, a console’s exclusive game can push people to buy one system over another, but when done poorly, it may have the opposite effect.
In the spirit of fairness then, we’ve compiled a list of 10 terrible PS4 exclusives that you should never play as well as five really good ones that you should check out. Let’s begin with the ones at the very bottom of the rung.
10. The Last Guardian
I know I’m probably going to get a lot of hate for this, but just hear me out. The Last Guardian isn’t a flat-out bad game, but in the context of its development and release, it’s pretty sad to say the least. The game has been in development for years; so long in fact that Team ICO had to skip the Playstation 3 entirely. However, they were finally able to get their acts together and create this game so it could finally come out in November of 2016. That said, they probably should’ve waited a bit longer before releasing it. While the game itself is gorgeous, running on the advanced hardware of the PS4, the game’s issues are primarily in the bird-dog-dragon creature Trico. While he is animated very well, he is a pain to control in the sense that you don’t control him at all. He simply does what he wants, which can lead to some of the most frustrating puzzles of all time. Furthermore, the boy (player character) while he has some good moments, also muddles the gameplay by not being able to take on any bad guys (you have to hope Trico comes to your aid). It’s not terrible, but in the context of its release, it should’ve been a lot better.
Out of every original game the PS4 had to offer in its earlier years, Knack had the most promise. Being a new IP, you took control of the character Knack. What is his special gimmick (every platformer has one)? Well, Knack can collect particular relics to grow in size throughout a level and loses them if he gets attacked. You can see why that premise alone would have people excited for it, being a launch title and all. Being able to change size can add different types of conflict throughout a level and give both a sense of strength and a sense of fear. However, the ideas were never fully realized, making Knack a bit of an uninspired launch title. The platforming was pretty general and had nothing to truly make it stand out, relics only appeared at specific points so you never felt like you were in control, and the game was overly tedious. If done properly, this game could’ve truly carried the PS4 during its early months (not that it performed poorly) and been placed with the likes of Ratchet and Sly Cooper.
8. The Order: 1886
Many games that end up falling flat on the Xbox One and PS4 are not so because they’re horrible graphically. On the contrary, the developers take so much time and care into the visuals that they end up slacking when it comes to making the game unique and fun. The Order: 1886 is a perfect example of this. The game itself is one of the best looking on the system. It takes place during the Victorian era of London and adds a lot of echoes from real world history. Like all good history games, though, it adds plenty of new, interesting, and video game-esque functions to make for an exciting story. You get to hear about the killings of a man named Jack the Ripper, get crazy weapons from Nikola Tesla, and even thread connections to the time of Camelot. Where the game falls flat is in the gameplay itself. You are never put in control of the world and you are never free to explore this beautiful version of London to your heart’s content. You must instead follow the linear path that the developers have set before you. Then there’s the combat system, which is just a formulaic, uninspired take on the genre.
Racing games are somewhat of a hard market. When you make one to capture the real world, you risk the concept of the product falling to the wayside in comparison to games like Forza and Need for Speed. Every once in a while, a developer will make a racing game and attempt to add something fresh so that it will stand out and possibly even compete with the behemoths of the genre. This is what was attempted with Driveclub. A good-looking game full of realistic cars and set pieces, the game was created with online play in mind. The developers wanted a focus on community and playing with people around the world in all kinds of modes and races. However, when you can’t get your main mechanic, your game is bound to be terrible, and that’s exactly what happened with Driveclub. There were numerous server issues to the point where the online was practically unplayable, and this in turn made the game not worth it. After all, why spend the money on an online-focused racing game that’s bad when you could simply get Need for Speed Rivals– a game where you’re guaranteed a quality experience.
6. Tearaway Unfolded
Don’t get me wrong, I loved Tearaway when I played it on the PS Vita. The game utilized all of the PS Vita’s features to create a unique game that never felt gimmicky. It has an excellent art style that was well-rounded into arguably the best platformer on the system. However, it’s transition to the PS4 doesn’t exactly hold up. Because the Dualshock 4 lacks a lot of the features that the PS Vita does, you are forced to use less than great control options for the unique styles of play. Granted, the game still looks great and holds up its art style very well, but it isn’t faithful at its core to the PS Vita original. It adds a lot of new environments, but they never mesh well with the classic version (including a larger amount of combat sections that just seem shoehorned in). Overall, Tearaway Unfolded isn’t a terrible game, but if you have played the Vita original or have a Vita, you’d be better off skipping this one for the PS4. Besides, it’s much easier to draw shapes with the Vita’s screen than it is with the Dualshock 4’s cramped touchpad.
5. Fluster Cluck
Fluster Cluck. I couldn’t make up a title like that if I tried. If the title is any indication about how good the game is, then we’re in for a terrible time. Unfortunately for those of us that own a PS4, this game exists. So what does a game like Fluster Cluck do? Well, it takes inspiration from old party games from the N64/PSOne era. Apparently, they took this inspiration to entirely new levels, because the graphics in this game are bad enough that they look like they belong in that era. And while you can play with four people in a local multiplayer mode, that doesn’t make the game any more fun. The entire objective of the game is that you have to take control of some aliens, grab some people, drag them across an entire map, and turn them into chickens. That’s pretty much it. From the moment you start playing the game, you can see just how unimaginative it is. The menu is ugly and features very hideous sound design when you click through. There is nothing to distinguish the aliens from each other than the color of their ships, and need I remind you that your entire goal is to turn people into chickens?
4. The PlayRoom
People like to trash on Nintendo for always trying to make a game that attempts to justify the new features included in their new systems. From Wii Sports to 1 2 Switch!, there’s plenty of examples. However, if you’re going to point out when Nintendo does it, you have to point it out when other companies do it as well, and Sony isn’t exactly innocent here. When the PS4 came out, it did not come bundled with a camera, you had to buy it separately. However, the game came pre-installed in the early versions of the system, so at least it was free. That said, the game isn’t very good, if you can even call it a game. Its only purpose is to justify the purchase of a Playstation Camera, which it doesn’t. The game is only a collection of half-realized mini games where you can play around with little characters that come out of your controller (augmented reality), and play an accordion version of Pong. While it might be cute and entertaining for a good ten minutes, this is a game that quickly loses peoples’ interest and will long forgotten in the large library of PS4 games.
3. Basement Crawl
Indie games are generally some of the most interesting and fun experiences on the market when done well. When done poorly, they can be some of the worst games ever made, and that’s exactly what Basement Crawl is- one of the worst games on the PS4. Coming out around three years ago now, the game takes a lot of notes from the then-absent Bomberman series. If only they could have taken inspiration from the quality of those games. Basement Crawl had so much potential and if done well, could’ve been one of the top Indie games in recent memory. Because it doesn’t even understand how to teach players the mechanics, the game fell flat easily. Furthermore, the game also suffered from a large number of glitches and technical issues that the developers promised to fix. It’s likely that just made the reputation of the game even worse going forward. Here’s a helpful hint for you upcoming game developers: if you have to publicly announce that you are going to “fix” your game after it has been released, you probably have a bad game on your hands. If you ever see this game on sale, don’t bother with it.
2. No Man’s Sky
What hurts the most about putting No Man’s Sky on this list is that it had everything in place to become one of the greatest games of all time. From the footage shown to all of the trailers, there was so much that got tons of people excited for it. However, when the actual game was released, it was shown to lack many of the features that were promised in the months leading up to release, as well as not really capturing the feel that was presented in the footage. No Man’s Sky has a vast world, but it is one that is stuffed with repetition and glitches. Countless issues of pop-in are frequent as you scour the surface of planets for extra resources. The combat is frankly terrible, having nothing of interest or value to keep you coming back. There is no way to meet other people playing the game, despite Hello Games promising that would be included. The list goes on and on. Then if you manage to put enough hours in to get to the center of the galaxy, you are rewarded by being dumped into another galaxy where you simply get to start over again.
1. Godzilla: The Game
When it was announced that Godzilla would be getting his own game on the PS4, there was a lot of excitement going around. After all, the 2014 Godzilla movie put the King of Monsters back on his throne, and he was fresh on everyone’s minds. However, when the game came out, not only were many disappointed, they were even shocked. The game’s graphics are so downright horrible (aside from the monsters) that they look like they were ripped out of a PS2 game. Furthermore, the controls are so laughably bad that you’ll struggle just to walk down a street. Then there’s the combat itself (because what Godzilla game wouldn’t have monster fights?). The combat is simply a random button-masher in which you will be utilizing the same moves and hope for the best outcome. Overall, this game was plain awful. What makes this even worse is that it is still trumped by a monster fighter game that came out for the PS2- War of the Monsters. Why hasn’t anyone tried to take that formula into a Godzilla game? That would sell incredibly well!
5. Final Fantasy X/X-2 Remaster
While it’s true that Final Fantasy X and X-2 had already seen a remaster on the PS3, because it was so late in the console’s life cycle they were quickly ported over to the PS4. As you might expect, the remaster captures everything you loved about those two RPGs and builds upon it aptly. Both games are the international versions as opposed to the localized ones. This is especially exciting for fans of Final Fantasy X. The International version includes the Expert Sphere Grid, a host of new Dark Aeon bosses that are much harder than Jecht, and the secret boss Penance, who is the hardest monster in the game. Final Fantasy X-2 also includes The Last Mission which adds on to the campaign mode. Both these games (the former more so) were considered pretty good, and seeing them remastered for a new console generation is quite exciting. It’s obvious that X had the most work done on it, but that’s mostly to its benefit. All of the music is slightly updated to sound new, the character models look much better, and having the entire experience in full HD just makes Spira look very beautiful.
4. The Last Of Us Remastered
The Last of Us is often cited as one of the greatest games of all time. The winner of numerous Game of the Year awards, this game captures everything you could ever want. Compelling story? Check. Excellent and intuitive gameplay? Check. Gorgeous graphics that push the system’s limits? Double check. It comes as no surprise then that the game was remastered for the PS4. That said how does one improve on such a good looking game? Well, after having played both versions, The Last of Us Remastered is much brighter, with better texture and graphic work all-around. While these tweaks are seemingly small, they go a long way, to the point where it’s one the best-looking games on the system. The game is also a complete package, including the Left Behind DLC, so fans can see Ellie’s story before she met Joel and how she helped him recover during the main story. The game, at the very least, is a very good excuse to play through the story once more and get lost in the poetically beautiful world. This is the definitive version of the game, and the best way to experience the story, DLC, and multiplayer.
3. Until Dawn
There are two primary concepts of time travel, but the one that many stories focus on is the Butterfly Effect. If you change even the smallest thing (something even as harmless as butterfly flying to a certain place), then it will snowball and have drastic effects on the structured timeline. Until Dawn takes this concept and weds it with classic horror films, which leads to an experience unlike any other. The game puts in you in the shoes of eight different teenagers. You have the options to choose what they do, but this time around, each choice has various consequences across the timeline. Your overall goal is to try and save every one of them, but you’re likely to lose several characters your first few playthroughs. On top of that, Until Dawn also captures horror movie tropes very well and uses that to build a twisted form of tension on top of comic lighthearted moments. Overall, this is a game worth trying, if for the experience alone. Everything you do in it has direct consequences, and you will either pay or be rewarded with the things you decide. Be warned though- the game likes to screw with you a bit.
2. Ratchet And Clank
The Ratchet and Clank series has gone on for quite some time, and instead of continuing its ever-expanding story, Insomniac decided to make the duo’s first outing on the PS4 a re-imagining of the original game. Make no mistake, this is by no means a remaster. Insomniac has built Ratchet and Clank from the ground up and it is one of the best platformers on the system. It is incredibly satisfying to see a lot of the old environments remade on the PS4’s hardware, on top of the great weapon additions juxtaposed with some classics like the Pyrocitor and Mr. Zurkon. The story also receives a bit of an overhaul, providing more of a continuous experience than the first time as Ratchet and Clank become members of the Galactic Rangers. The game also benefits from this re-structuring in its various planets. Each of them now have a feel distinctly their own to the point where you feel like each one is a living breathing environment that has its own ecosystem and way of life. It’ll be interesting to see where Insomniac takes the sequels to this game, because they’ve certainly opened with a loud bang.
1. Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End
Naughty Dog is a behemoth of a developer, and they have yet to make a genuinely bad game. One of their best franchises is Uncharted. Debuting on the PS3, Naughty Dog essentially combined Tomb Raider and Indiana Jones to make a vast and fun experience. The original trilogy on PS3 was very well-received, and Naughty Dog continued by making the 4th and seemingly final entry for the PS4. This game sees an older Nathan Drake get pulled into the action one last time, and right away, it is breathtaking. The hardware on the PS4 turns Uncharted 4 into arguably the greatest-looking game on the console. Then there’s the polished and improved gameplay mechanics and AI, both of which work together to provide players with a much more connected and uninterrupted experience. Everything feels and plays like you imagine it would in real life. The combat also functions incredibly well, using advanced enemy AI to force you not to hide and always be moving, which makes it feel more like you’re in a real shootout. It’s a well-rounded experience and a fine conclusion to the story of Nathan Drake. We can’t wait to see what they do with The Last of Us.
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