2017 has been a great year for gaming. The Switch was a huge success, the 4K generation came in…well, sort of, and the games were great.
However, it was not without its unfortunate moments and it would not be a list of the biggest disappointments in 2017 if I did not include them all.
Without going on too much just know that the video game industry failed us terribly this year in the following ways.
Loot boxes ruin gaming
There is no doubt that 2017 was the year of loot boxes and if you ask me 2018 will be even worse, but we will deal with that when it happens.
Some publishers, namely EA Games took loot boxes to a whole new level this year by basically locking entire games behind these pay-to-win mechanics.
Star Wars: Battlefront 2 was one of the biggest controversies of the year thanks to loot boxes, more on that later, but all this proved that it is indeed a bigger threat than we thought.
Governments are now getting involved and the debate whether or not loot boxes is gambling is happening all over the world. If anything, this has caused industry-wide panic as gamers refuse to buy games now if they contain loot boxes in any way, shape or form.
Mass Effect: Andromeda was a complete mess
You would think that after the success of the original Mass Effect trilogy, bar the original ending of Mass Effect 3, Bioware would be veterans at what they do.
Well, Mass Effect: Andromeda spoke otherwise. It was a bland game with very little going for it from its story to its characters, even its open world hubs felt dead and empty.
Then we have the facial animations that were just horrendous and ruined any little connection players had between their party members in the game and the overall main characters in the story.
EA has since canned the series completely by stating that Bioware will not return to it anytime soon. Basically, EA killed Mass Effect.
Agents of Mayhem does not do well
After the success of Saints Row, Volition Studios worked on a pretty awesome game called Agents of Mayhem.
I loved it and while the combat was a bit repetitive it was not a bad game. However, not everyone thought it was good and many gamers completely overlooked this title as it flew under the radar.
Agents of Mayhem released and barely anyone paid attention to it which is a shame really. It came and went like the wind with no trace of anything behind it.
While it had the potential to be a true Saint Row successor it failed to make an impact at all.
Need for Speed: Payback = another complete mess
The latest Need for Speed looked great on paper. Fast and the Furious-styled action combined with epic car chases and a solid story.
Well, none of that came to light at all. Instead of the action, we got pre-rendered cutscenes, limited police chases that never really relied on you getting away, and the story was supported by cheesy dialogue and poor acting.
Not to mention that the entire game was locked behind loot boxes that made it pay-to-win. Yes, this was EA ruining yet another game.
Xbox One X launch lineup is a joke
If you did not know, the Xbox One X is out. While it is not out in SA the 4K powerhouse console is out in the world.
You probably have not seen much of it due to the lack of games to boost the release. While the console has a fantastic lineup of backwards compatible games with 4K enhancements and third-party releases that are 1-4 years old boasting the same thing, the Xbox One X had no exclusive games on launch at all.
Besides that, the lineup for the console looks grim too with Crackdown 3, and Sea of Thieves being the only Xbox One exclusive on the horizon.
If we look at Nintendo’s year one lineup it thrashed the 4K monster a few times. It is sad but if you are buying an X then enjoy playing your old games…for a long time.
The Xbox One X’s launch lineup was probably brought down by the cancellation of Scalebound which looked epic by the way and would probably push the console to new limits. Well, it cannot now because it was scrapped.
Microsoft cancelled Scalebound in early January after making a big deal about it a few times before at conferences.
It was the second Xbox One exclusive in the space of a year to suffer cancellation as Fable Legends suffered the same fate in 2016. Scalebound could have been something great with the minds behind Bayonetta at the helm and it included Dragons…DRAGONS!!
Ghost Recon: Wildlands should have done better
I do often feel bad for Ubisoft as they do screw up but then they make up for it. After the lacklustre post-game content of The Division many gamers felt let down by it and when Wildlands released, the game that was meant to be everything The Division was not, gamers stayed away in fear of being burnt again.
The same happened to Watch Dogs 2 which was great too but suffered due to the first game’s failure.
Ghost Recon Wildlands is a fantastic game that everyone should play, but some players are staying away because of the “Tom Clancy” title. I for one am disappointed at the rate of adoption of this game and it should have done better.
Star Wars: Battlefront 2 = yet another complete mess
There is not much I can say about Battlefront 2 that has not already been said. The game must have been a PR nightmare as everything about it was attacked by the world.
The loot boxes that were pay-to-win and locked the entire multiplayer (the game’s main mode) behind a paywall. The progression system that took players over forty hours to unlock a hero, and the things EA said about other genres while trying to defend the game.
Things like “single player games don’t sell”, “nobody wants linear games”, and “the progression system was created through thorough playtesting”.
Yes EA really screwed the pooch this year with everything you touched and this is not the last time you will hear from them on this list.
VR fails to impress
While Sony is punting PS VR as much as the possibly can, it did not do as well as they hoped.
Titles in 2017 were a let down with Skyrim VR being almost impossible to play due to its shoddy controls, the same for DOOM VFR, and not to mention that two of Sony’s biggest games of the year were delayed into 2018. Both Bravo Team and The Impatient were pushed back to March 2018 after they were scheduled for release this past November.
We then have Farpoint which was meant to be the first real FPS game for VR and even came with an awesome replica gun. This, however, failed to impress due to its bland environment, poor story, and repetitive gameplay. Maybe 2018 will be a better place for VR, maybe not.
RIP Visceral Games
Last but not least is the closure of Visceral Games, the team behind the awesome Dead Space series.
You will never guess who closed them down? Yes, EA of all people. Visceral Games were responsible for bringing new life into the survival horror genre and they did a great job with Dead Space.
The first two were great but then EA decided to included co-op into the third game which brought down the experience a bit. Still, it was a great series, Battlefield Hardline, another game from the studio was also great but most of all we could not wait to play the Star Wars game they were working on.
Well, EA thought that no one plays single player games anymore which the Star Wars game was and closed the studio in an attempt to cash in on the success of Battlefront 2 instead.
Well, that did not go that well as you might have heard. Hope EA has some major new year’s resolutions in mind as we all pretty much hate them at the moment. Resquieta in Pace Dead Space..oh wrong publisher.