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We may all belong to the same species, but each of us is a unique individual. This means we have our own likes and dislikes, our own tastes in music, movies, and clothes, and our own idea of what is good and what is bad.

Reviewing something, whether it’s hardware, software, art, or an experience, is a deceptively tricky thing to do. You have to try and put aside personal biases and focus on the actual positives and negatives of that thing. Even if you manage to do this successfully, there will always be someone out there who disagrees with your review, and for one day only that person is me.

What follows is a list of five video games that are almost universally acclaimed by the critics and beloved by gamers. But I happen to think they’re incredibly overrated. The “real rating” mentioned for each entry on the list is the Metacritic score How To Get The Most Out Of Metacritic How To Get The Most Out Of Metacritic Metacritic is one of a handful of big review aggregation sites. Its motto of, "Keeping score of entertainment" sums up what it does perfectly. Rather than focus on just one aspect of entertainment such as... Read More the game boasts, while the “revised rating” is how I’d score each game if I was in charge. Of everything. Which I obviously should be.

Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2

Real Rating: 94%

The Call Of Duty series is an easy target: it’s one of the most-popular franchises in the world, it gets annual updates like clockwork, and the games are so similar to one another they all meld into one. Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 is often cited as being the highlight of the series so far, but I really don’t think it deserves to be lauded in this way.

This is a direct sequel to the first Modern Warfare game, and it shows. As the original was so successful the developers dedicated little time or effort to improving or evolving the gameplay. The result is more of the same, which suited the lemmings who queue at midnight each year for the latest instalment, but left the rest of us wondering what the fuss was about.

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The campaign is short and uninspired, the multiplayer is dull and repetitive, and the co-op mode will generate more arguments among friends than anything else. And then there’s the controversial level which sees you massacre innocent civilians. Oh, what fun.

Revised Rating: 70%

Minecraft

 

Real Rating: 93%

Minecraft A Latecomer’s Introduction To Minecraft [MUO Gaming] A Latecomer’s Introduction To Minecraft [MUO Gaming] Minecraft, the block-based sensation that took gaming by storm, is now well over three years old. It’s almost hard to believe it’s been that long since the first alpha was posted – and it’s equally... Read More makes the list for one reason and one reason alone: the appeal of this game is completely lost on me. For the uninitiated among you, Minecraft features a huge open world comprising of blocks; big, hulking blocks that look like they’d be more at home in a 1980s arcade game.

You wander this landscape either creating, hmm, stuff and things, or surviving. Yes, in Minecraft the very act of surviving to live another day in this pointless world of blocks is regarded as fun. Which must mean Bear Grylls is some kind of god to the average Minecraft player.

Revised Rating: 50%

Demon’s Souls

 

Real Rating: 89%

Demon’s Souls is held in high regard by hardcore gamers, but with a difficulty level that means it’s more fun to be repeatedly kicked in the nether regions, it surely doesn’t deserve the hyperbole some have attached to it. I play video games to escape from the stresses of the real world, so the last thing I want to do is be continually frustrated by a game which ramps the difficulty level up to 11 7 Video Games So Hard They Will Make You Want To Throw Your Controller 7 Video Games So Hard They Will Make You Want To Throw Your Controller One of the major staples of old school video games is the incredible difficulty. I've talked about the level of challenge in older games before in an article about the things I miss most from... Read More .

It looks good for what it is, with a dark and foreboding atmosphere seeping through its every pore, but that just adds to the feeling of gloom and doom you feel when you play the game. I’m sure there is a certain satisfaction felt when you beat Demon’s Souls, but if you don’t actually enjoy the process of reaching the end, can it really be considered worthy of playing?

Revised Rating: 40%

Metal Gear Solid 4

Real Rating: 94%

The Metal Gear Solid series is one you’ll either love or hate. I tend towards loving it, and truly appreciated the first title when it was released on the PlayStation in 1998. Metal Gear Solid 2 was also more fun than frustrating, but the tables began to turn with Metal Gear Solid 3, and by the time Metal Gear Solid 4 arrived most of the fun had been sucked out of the series.

Metal Gear Solid 4 actually made it onto our list of the best PS3 games in existence 10 Of The Best PS3 Games You Must Play [MUO Gaming] 10 Of The Best PS3 Games You Must Play [MUO Gaming] This generation of games consoles is coming to an end, with the Wii U already having arrived to usher in the next-generation, and successors to both the PS3 and Xbox 360 expected in 2013. However,... Read More , and it is a game everyone should at least try for themselves. But while it’s undoubtedly technically flawless the story is overly complicated, the gameplay is rather tedious, and the long-winded cutscenes which interrupt the flow of the game by popping up every five minutes are truly tiresome.

Revised Rating: 70%

The Last Of Us

Real Rating: 95%

The Last Of Us is, rather fittingly, the last game we’ll be taking down a peg or two. It’s the most recent release on the list, and the one that’s received the highest number of perfect scores of all those mentioned. How those 10/10s or 100% scores can be justified leaves me perplexed, as The Last Of Us is far from being a perfect game.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s a good game, it’s just not the masterpiece some have made it out to be. For starters the AI is shockingly bad, with enemies often staring straight past you. Your traveling companions also lumber straight into enemies, but not to worry, as they’re somehow invisible to their gaze anyway.

The gameplay can often become monotonous, and the pacing is all over the place. The campaign is rather short, and the multiplayer is fun but flawed. Then there is the connection between the two main protagonists, which actually feels forced a lot of the time. Lastly, there’s the ending, which, without giving anything away, left me completely deflated and slightly cheated out of a fitting conclusion to the story.

Revised Rating: 80%

Conclusions

Now comes the fun part, where you are able to stop spitting at your computer screen and start writing a reply countering anything I have said that you disagree with. I’ll be shocked if anyone out there agrees with me on all five of my picks of overrated games, but if you are that person please let me know in the comments section below.

If, on the other hand, you love any of the titles mentioned with a passion, feel free to defend them by ripping my arguments apart. Is Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 actually innovative and inspiring? Is Minecraft beautiful and beyond my level of intelligence? Is it fun to continually die in Demon’s Souls? Do the epic cutscenes augment rather than detract from the experience of playing Metal Gear Solid 4? Do the emotional elements of The Last Of Us give it a pass on its many flaws? The floor is now yours…

Image Credit: Shutterstock

  1. Craig Snyder
    August 1, 2013 at 8:41 am

    Have an article that was published before criticizing Minecraft a bit (http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/minecraft-great-opinion/). It's a game that has made all sorts of history and is obviously very popular, but I had to take a step back after reading the patch notes one week and ask myself, "Am I seriously that excited that sheering sheep now works as intended?"

  2. Thicky
    August 1, 2013 at 3:27 am

    Just another comment about Minecraft:

    If you're going to take what Minecraft offers on the surface, then really, there isn't much to it. I really hate to say this but in order to truly appreciate it, you need to have some sort of creativity and experiment with this sandbox environment. It truly has what we call infinite potential.

    I'm going to talk mostly about the PC version because it can be considered the latest version as the 360 one is slowly updating its way to its PC counterpart. I dislike pointless building too. But you have no idea how incredible the game mechanics are, especially with the introduction of redstone and other contraptions. Take a look at the stuff Ethoslab did on Youtube. It's incredible and it makes you realise that the possibilities are indeed endless. Etho never builds anything just for looks, but everything he does has a function.

    So yeah, it's kind of a biased review as. Just as how you feel fanboys shouldn't make the reviews, haters shouldn't too.

  3. MakeUseOf TechGuy
    July 26, 2013 at 10:03 am

    Disappointed to see any Mario or Zelda game not on this list. Overrated crap for kiddies!

    • Dave P
      July 26, 2013 at 3:15 pm

      Honestly, I considered both. You already know my feelings about Mario. But which game to choose? If I'd gone with series or characters then at least one of these would have made an appearance.

  4. Roshan Patel
    July 25, 2013 at 10:13 pm

    I think I could be that person who totally agrees with you. I'd revise Call of Duty down a bit more, considering the recent Vonderhaar incident... It's single-handedly helped turn gamers into nutjobs (like the video - HOLY CRAP by the way).

    Minecraft is almost the game that people play to be creative. It isn't the game that's good, it's those that really love being creative that make it good.

    • Dave P
      July 26, 2013 at 3:13 pm

      No, you're not meant to agree with me! ;)

  5. Mihovil P
    July 25, 2013 at 12:26 pm

    What about Skyrim? Yeah, it is beautiful, yeah you can go wherever, whenever you want.... You can do anything you want.... But then, what? Everything else is empty.....

    • Dave P
      July 25, 2013 at 2:27 pm

      Another game I considered. It isn't for me but there wasn't quite enough compelling reasons to mark it down apart from personal biases.

  6. HS
    July 25, 2013 at 10:10 am

    Nice - always love a well-articulated contrarian opinion piece that goes against the established perception; thanks for that... Several of the examples you mentioned I don't know; regarding CoD, I don't really have an opinion; and Minecraft's appeal is lost on me, too.

    BUT (and here it comes): The Last of Us.

    I agree on the wacky AI: A group of hardened enemy bandits conduct a slow, thorough room-to-room sweep in the abandoned house you took shelter in, guns raised, finger on the trigger... They edge closer and closer to your hiding place behind the couch, as you silently raise an empty bottle... You get ready to smash it against a distant wall to create an audio diversion and then go all-out Gollum on the distracted fighters... when suddenly the stupid brat you're tasked to protect runs forward from her hideout and performs a weird bent-down Macarena right in front of the enemy. Who apparently see that happen every day, because they don't flinch, pause or otherwise acknowledge the girl's performance - or even EXISTENCE. Mood ruined, I'll give you that...

    But the story, the well-defined characters and, yes, specifically the very end more than make up for this: Not everybody you would expect to survive, survives; not everyone who should, could or would (in a typical well-written, emotional story) die, dies; themes and topics repeat (intro vs. climactic end fight) without being tacky or predictable, thus making the characters believable; morally good persons make immoral calls and vice versa; and some people who have been (credibly) introduced to be relatable (and even good in nature) may turn out to be very, very different than previously thought... And then we have the final scene, which was - to me - the perfect ending: Unpredictable, contains the completion of a character's journey to a totally different person, with grave consequences to the whole fictional world we have been presented. Just... wow. So - I disagree on that point, I guess. :-)

    • Dave P
      July 25, 2013 at 2:34 pm

      I equally love a well-written counter argument presented in the form of a genuine comment :)

      The worst example of the AI was Bill, who would warn you to be quiet and then lumber straight past you into the eyeline of a runner. Not that they noticed him, mind. Ugh.

      You're more than welcome to disagree on the ending, and sure, there are aspects of it that are very well conceived. It's also nice to see such strong, mature themes being explored in a video game. However, from the moment Marlene showed up near the end I knew it was going to jump the shark, at least for me personally. I also felt betrayed that I was effectively forced to make a decision I didn't personally agree with. Still, we can agree to disagree :)

  7. Alex D
    July 25, 2013 at 3:20 am

    How is Final Fantasy 7 not on this list? I definitely agree with COD and Metal Gear though. Never saw the appeal in either if those games.

    • Dave P
      July 25, 2013 at 2:26 pm

      I considered FF7 despite personally loving it to bits. But I think it's too important a title to demean, bringing Japanese RPGs to the western mainstream and making the switch to 3D.

  8. Joel Lee
    July 25, 2013 at 1:40 am

    Games should be reviewed based on more than "this game was too hard" or "I don't get the appeal of this game." If you aren't in the game's target audience, then you should put yourself in the shoes of that audience when reviewing, or you should just not review it altogether. Otherwise SC2, D3, TF2, and a bunch of other widely acclaimed games would get 0% from me.

    • Dave P
      July 25, 2013 at 2:00 am

      They're the reasons I think these games are overrated. And this is only meant as a lighthearted piece anyway. I'm hardly saying you must all agree with me or else. Think of it as me playing devil's advocate for these games that others seem scared to criticize.

      • Joel Lee
        July 25, 2013 at 2:22 am

        Fair enough. I read a lot of critic reviews for games, movies, and TV shows and it riles me up whenever I come across docked points for complaints that are too personal or subjective. Viewed from a lighthearted perspective, I can enjoy this article for what it is. :P

        • Dave P
          July 25, 2013 at 2:25 pm

          That's fair enough. With Minecraft I think it's either a love or hate thing, so "getting the appeal" is a legitimate complaint. With Demon's Souls the difficulty level is so high that it stops being fun. Yes, that's subjective, but I think it's a legitimate reason for docking points.

          I'm glad you can enjoy this in the light-hearted way it's meant though :)

  9. Dom A
    July 24, 2013 at 10:36 pm

    I have the feeling you might have some sort of bias approach toward Minecraft. You are mad that the game is extremely popular, mostly among little kids 13 and under, and you want to prove to people that you are smarter and more intellectual than them. You went in with the idea that the game was going to be bad, and thus you told yourself it was bad. The game is unique. It gives you a canvas and you can paint whatever masterpiece you want on to it. The voxel based world proves it is not going for high end graphics. Something you must learn is that high end graphics DO NOT make a game.

    • Dave P
      July 24, 2013 at 11:25 pm

      Not bias as such, I just think it's overrated. I'm no smarter than the average 13-year-old, and I like playing pointless games as much as the next person. Like LittleBigPlanet, for example.

      I'm fully aware graphics aren't the be all and end all. In fact, I stopped being impressed by mere visuals years ago, But still, I do draw the line at everything being built out of huge pixelated blocks.

  10. Randi
    July 24, 2013 at 10:27 pm

    I definitely disagree with Minecraft! Just because you get the appeal doesn't make it an amazing game silly! The simple reason that Minecraft is so amazing is simply because you can make it be anything that you want it to be! Want to play Survival mode and see if you can survive and thrive? No problem. Want to try to build a replica of the Starship Enterprise? Take your best shot! Want to invent a game and play online with others? Go for it! Minecraft not only allows you to play by yourself, it allows you to play with others. Honestly, the most fun enjoyment that you will get out of Minecraft can be found when you play online with other people and do your best to raid and trash their houses :D

    • Dave P
      July 24, 2013 at 11:23 pm

      Of course, this is just my opinion, but I really don't get it. To what end would you recreate the Starship Enterprise? Do you gain something from trashing people's houses? I guess I'm asking what is the ultimate goal? It sounds like it's just a huge sandbox to play in, but I'm not 12 any more!

      • Randi
        July 25, 2013 at 12:03 am

        A big sandbox - that's right :D Are you sure you aren't 12 anymore? Most guys have that little bit of little boy left in them - and before you disagree with that I'll say just one word: NERF.

        The point of Minecraft is that there IS NO GOAL! You don't have to spend hours upon hours playing a game only to have the ending suck, because there's no ending. It's being constantly updated so new things are happening all the time. Why would you want to build a replica of the Enterprise or the White House? Maybe you're someone who loves artistic things but you aren't able to do anything with pencil or paint (or Photoshop). But with the blocks it's much more simple and yet you can create seriously crazy things.

        It even allows you to learn. The Redstone is essentially circuitry, so those 13 year old kids who are playing are figuring out how circuits work and they don't even realize it!!

        • Dave P
          July 25, 2013 at 2:02 am

          I may be 12 mentally, but physically I'm near 112.

          I'm not sure the lack of an ending sells it to me, to be perfectly frank. I need a game to have a beginning, middle, and end, a point at which I know I've reached some sort of conclusion and can walk away satisfied.

          The learning aspects are hard to criticize, so I'll begrudgingly concede defeat on that one ;)

        • TechnoAngina
          July 25, 2013 at 5:27 pm

          It's funny I pretty much agree with you on almost all of these except for minecraft.Minecraft isn't purely a game, it's also a community. Musicians can interact with fans, fans can interact with each other, and builders can build things they can't irl. I think the problem you have with the game might be the amount of input it requires to get a worthwhile outcome. If creating isn't your thing, and let's face it many of us are consumers more than creators then minecraft won't appeal or make sense. What minecraft does so wonderfully well, is that it lowers the barrier to entry for those who do want to create. The "ending" is what you create. It's a game that let's you build your own ending and celebrate your own achievements or lets you destroy someone else's.

        • Victor O
          July 25, 2013 at 8:09 pm

          There is somewhat of a goal (to kill the ender-dragon, an "ultimate" and unique enemy). I think, however, that the real appeal to minecraft is the community and the things that you can DO with it. You can mod it, add filters to maps, mess around with special commands, and so much more. It's the infinite possibilities that make it so much fun.

  11. Jack G
    July 24, 2013 at 10:10 pm

    Sure thats true about minecraft on its own, but add servers and adventure maps into the mix and its epic. And the graphics are not as bad as people think.

    • Dave P
      July 24, 2013 at 10:17 pm

      OK, so please explain (like I'm 5) what the appeal of Minecraft is. I honestly just don't get it.

      • Matt Smith
        July 24, 2013 at 11:16 pm

        It's the same appeal as Lego. You have a bunch of blocks and you can build stuff with them. Add monsters for some more tension, and that's Minecraft. Not everyone gets it, but the appeal of making something out of nothing isn't unusual.

        • Dave P
          July 24, 2013 at 11:28 pm

          OK, I appreciate the effort in explaining the appeal, but does that justify a 93% rating? Really? Also, I don't know about you but I stopped using Lego when I was about 9.

        • Matt Smith
          July 24, 2013 at 11:35 pm

          Yes, it does justify a 93% if the game is very good at what it does, and Minecraft is.

          As for Lego - dude, you just referred to another activity as childish during a conversation about video games.

        • Dave P
          July 24, 2013 at 11:41 pm

          Well, I disagree, but that's the point of the piece.

          You think video games are childish? Hmm, OK. Lego is made for children, video games are made for all ages.

        • Jamey Dee
          July 25, 2013 at 3:08 pm

          Lego is made for children? Just children? Honestly?

          http://www.amazon.com/LEGO-Star-Wars-Death-10188/dp/B002EEP3NO/

          http://www.amazon.com/LEGO-4544091-Mindstorms-NXT-2-0/dp/B001USHRYI/

          Lego is for all ages. :) Just like video games.

      • Some guy
        July 27, 2013 at 10:58 am

        It is very hard to explain Minecraft but if you actually dive inside it you will find it very interesting. A lot of things you cannot do in the real world you can do in Minecraft. There is a lot of possibility like Hide n Seek, Survival Games and other things

  12. Kshitij Verma
    July 24, 2013 at 9:46 pm

    Not related to the article, but I think you guys shall consider making a mobile-friendly version of your site.
    Using a nexus 4.
    All that aside great article once again.

    • Dave P
      July 24, 2013 at 11:21 pm

      The site is getting a makeover soon, so you may find that works better on your smartphone.

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