Many games that arguably should not have flown under the radar have done so throughout the years. Some games just do not get the love they deserve, regardless of who is to blame the developer for not releasing it correctly or in a fit state, the critics for being too harsh on it, or the fans for turning a blind eye to whatever reason.
These are some of the ones we will be looking at today. Here, you could discover a game you have previously overlooked. These are some underrated video games that you might not have had the opportunity to play after that.
Although Mafia and Mafia 2 are not considered all-time greats, many people still take the time to laud them for their vintage mobster settings and slightly more constrained gameplay that provided a more compelling alternative to so many GTA clones. However, Mafia 3 turned out to be rather contentious, with most of the criticism leveled at it being justified for attempting to use a fairly generic form of open-world gameplay. Most of the critiques have some merit.
However, Mafia 3’s slightly more conventional gameplay approach does not significantly lessen the effect of its amazing characters, location, and narrative. Mafia 3 was able to give a unique take on the crime game narrative by delving into the little-known realm of 1968 New Orleans (referred to as New Bordeaux in the game) and balancing it with a complex government conspiracy theory. Although the gameplay may have been better, it is unquestionably satisfactory to allow players to fully appreciate this game’s fantastic narrative.
Metal Gear Acid 2
Although Metal Gear Acid was an excellent game, many PSP users were put off by the title’s uninspired graphics and unfinished card-based tactical gameplay. Unfortunately, a lot of people never really gave Metal Gear Acid 2 the chance it so well deserved because of the game’s difficulties and generally bizarre ideas.
You will discover that Metal Gear Acid 2 delivers a much more sophisticated rendition of that core notion than its predecessor did if you can get past the obstacle of playing a Metal Gear strategy game focused on collectible card battle. Even better, it has some stunning cel-shaded graphics that perfectly represent the ludicrous and comical aspects of the series while also complementing the action. This game deserves a lot of praise and a larger current release, but given we’re talking about Konami, it’s quite unlikely that either will ever happen.
Nearly every game publisher wanted to create their own Halo killer after Microsoft’s Halo revolutionized the first-person shooter genre. That was the Resistance: Fall of Man franchise for Sony, with the Killzone series also vying for the title of best in the genre. Resistance 2 introduced several adjustments users did not like, such as regenerating life and a two-weapon restriction, to the first very well-received game. This probably contributed to the third installment’s poor sales performance, which is unfortunate because Resistance 3 is undoubtedly the greatest in the series.
Resistance 3 differs from previous chapters in the series in that it is not only a military tale about repelling extraterrestrial invasion. Additionally, there are more human aspects in the game, such as how survivors are, well, surviving in a post-apocalyptic world. Also, Resistance 3 includes a weapon leveling system that promotes experimentation while dropping the contentious revisions to Resistance 2. In a just universe, Resistance 3 would have salvaged the Resistance series, but instead, it effectively ended it.
One of those games that cut beyond genres, hobbies, and preferences is the original Punch-Out. Regardless of whether they like boxing or even other sports games, many gamers from that era have good recollections of the punishingly difficult game. Even though 1994’s Super-Punch Out should have had the opportunity to simply deliver a better-looking, better-performing version of its predecessor, as so many excellent SNES games did, the game was mostly received with a mechanical kind of appreciation and a great deal of apathy.
You might probably argue that Super Punch-Out loses the charm of its predecessor, but from a gameplay standpoint, it is a lot more fun and gratifying. It is one of those uncommon “arcade” sports games that captures the core allure of its genre in a way that anybody can enjoy. It is time to give this one a try if you have never played it or have not in a while.
Red Steel 2
Red Steel 2 has the opposite issue from many sequels, which often get the “underrated” label because they have to follow a masterpiece. Simply said, the original Red Steel was a horrible concoction of admirable concepts, noble aspirations, and poor engineering. It was intended to be a samurai epic that demonstrated the Wii’s capacity for distinctive action adventures. It ultimately turned out to be a shabby tech demonstration that seldom ever functioned.
Red Steel 2 manages to give a sequence of magnificent action set pieces that rate well among the greatest of their era, in addition to fixing the technical flaws of the first film (albeit some still occasionally appear). This samurai western, which was in every aspect a vast upgrade over its predecessor, ought to have established a legacy of its own. Instead, it utterly failed to live up to expectations and, in a different sense, continues to exist in the shadow of its predecessor.
Final Fantasy XIII-2
Final Fantasy XIII met Square Enix’s high expectations, receiving widespread acclaim. Instead, the plot, fighting, and linearity of the game were lambasted by gamers. Unfazed, Square attempted to regain fan support by paying attention to criticism, but things did not quite go as planned.
One of the few direct sequels in the Final Fantasy canon is Final Fantasy XIII-2. It continues where Final Fantasy XIII ends, although with a time travel-related retcon. According to Edge Magazine, the game’s creator Yoshinori Kitase promised side missions and an open environment modelled after Red Dead Redemption. True to his word, Final Fantasy XIII-2 fixed many of the issues with the original game. However, sales of XIII-2 were only around 50% as low as those of XIII. No matter how much a sequel improves on its predecessor, Final Fantasy XIII-2 shows how a subpar product can kill any potential anticipation for it.
Silent Hill Downpour
Every Silent Hill game produced after Silent Hill 4: The Room (which is relatively underestimated as well) is, at best, a true mixed bag, with the exception of Silent Hill: Shattered Memories. However, it must be acknowledged that even some of the poorest Silent Hill games included some very brilliant concepts. Some of those games were even on the cusp of greatness but could not quite reach it. Silent Hill: Downpour is one of the best Silent Hill sequels to tease “what might have been.”
Downpour is one of the most atmospherically effective terrifying Silent Hill games since it employs a dynamic weather system that alters the appearance rate and ferocity of some monsters (and frequently plays tricks on your sight). It also has a fantastically twisted plot that cleverly exploits the protagonist’s (an escaped criminal) deteriorating mental condition and obscure past. Although the gameplay can occasionally be tedious (especially by Silent Hill standards), this game is odd compared to the genuinely awful Silent Hill.
Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare
The Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare clip, which had previously been the most hated video game trailer on YouTube, surpassed it in popularity in 2016. The sudden and extensive blowback was caused by a variety of factors. Many believed that “Call of Duty in Space” was as desperate a move as practically every other “X franchise goes to space” effort in entertainment history. Some did not like the trailer itself; others were sick of the franchise overall at that time. A lot of folks were prepared to despise the game.
However, Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare’s campaign is unquestionably one of the finest in the series’ history. We do not often anticipate a story of this caliber from even the finest Call of Duty games, but developer Infinity Ward was enthused by the series’ swing into full sci-fi and utilized that genre move as a welcome excuse to build a passionate, heart-pounding, and wonderfully imaginative plot. Purists of the brand will undoubtedly not enjoy the game’s multiplayer, but it is long past time for it to shed the stigma brought on by the game’s massively unfavorable reviews.
Assassin’s Creed Syndicate
The Assassin’s Creed franchise was at its height about ten years ago. The majority of players adored Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag and eagerly anticipated its fantastic successor. Instead, they received the unreliable Assassin’s Creed Unity, which destroyed all anticipation for the next games, regardless of how good they would be.
Ubisoft representatives said during an investor call that the long list of issues in Assassin’s Creed Unity was to blame for the decline in sales of Assassin’s Creed Syndicate. One of the franchise’s least successful releases to date is Syndicate. Reviews indicate that the game, nonetheless, took note of Unity’s errors. The primary characters in Syndicate were commended for offering a contrast in personalities and gameplay styles, in addition to having considerably fewer issues when it was released. While Assassin’s Creed Syndicate deserved far more than it received, if it had not, Ubisoft may not have attempted to revive the brand and may still be publishing annual sequels.
Killer Instinct 2
Like many fighting games before it, Killer Instinct was created to compete with the best and profit from its popularity. Despite facing stiff competition when it was released, the game was nonetheless a commercial and financial success because of its fluid fighting and distinctive mechanics, including combo breakers and a double health bar system. Killer Instinct 2 received rapid approval but ended up killing the series for over 20 years.
Killer Instinct 2 was an improvement over the first, but it had one fatal flaw: it was only available in arcade cabinets. The game was subsequently released on the Nintendo 64 under the name Killer Instinct Gold, which, although undoubtedly better than Killer Instinct 2, never really established a following and was frequently compared negatively to the unexpected hit original. Even if it was not the finest fighter of its day, this game deserved to have the type of fan base that some later, less impressive fighting games did.
Resident Evil: Code Veronica
A new age of horror video games was ushered in with the first three Resident Evil games. With its more cinematic aesthetic and action-heavy horror gameplay, Resident Evil 4 advanced the genre even more. Resident Evil: Code Veronica is located somewhere in the middle of the two periods.
Many reviewers and gamers complimented Code: Veronica’s amazing aesthetics and excellent scares when it first came out. Even Code Veronica’s controls received praise for upholding the survival horror “tank controls” vibe while adding essential improvements. What makes Code Veronica so unappreciated? Well, the platform’s difficulties with sales are largely responsible for what makes it so outstanding. The game’s first release on the Dreamcast, the machine that ended Sega’s console industry, gave it the franchise’s first 3D settings and dynamic lighting.
Despite Drakengard 2’s existence, the first NieR is a spin-off of the Drakengard series and occurs after that game’s “E” ending, making it officially a sequel. When NieR was released, many attacked its graphics, but virtually everyone praised its narrative and soundtrack. Sadly, not many gamers were able to experience these features because the game’s director, Yoko Taro, estimates that just 500,000 copies were sold globally.
NieR’s original edition is underappreciated, but that cannot be said of its remake, NieR Replicant ver.1.22474487139, which quadrupled the lifetime sales of the original version in just two months. It has always seemed odd that NieR is so closely similar to other works that, at the time, either did better financially or earned greater critical praise, yet NieR continues to be this frequently underappreciated title that is still looking for a legacy beyond “underrated.”
Bloodlines in Castlevania
Castlevania: Bloodlines faced several obstacles. Bloodlines’ retro NES gameplay was viewed as a step back by fans of Super Castlevania 4 and as pleasantly antiquated by fans of Symphony of the Night when it was released between those two games. Additionally, it has an odd international storyline that seriously misappropriated the Castlevania mythos. Bloodlines was the sole Castlevania game made on the Sega Genesis, on top of everything else. Everything about it was peculiar.
However, Bloodlines is the fantastic Castlevania series’ undiscovered jewel. It has beautiful music, wonderful levels, and some of the best opponent designs in the series, and Eric’s spear deserves to appear in more Castlevania games. Playing such a well-made classic Castlevania game in a post-Symphony of the Night world when so many of the franchise’s entries felt compelled to copy that game’s concept is also oddly pleasant.
The Evil Within 2
Although by no means a horrible game, The Evil Within from 2014 turned out to be a very straightforward game. The highly anticipated return to horror gaming from Resident Evil director Shinji Mikami was indeed frightening, but its formulaic gameplay and shoddy narrative seemed dated in the worst ways. By providing a sizable area to explore, a more in-depth story, and a plethora of new gameplay elements for The Evil Within 2, director John Johanas and his team attempted to dramatically enhance the greatest concepts from the first game.
The Evil Within 2’s attempt to do too much eventually backfires, but the elements that do succeed make it one of the finest horror games ever. This game contains scenes that are among the finest horror set pieces ever created, and the times when the “large-world” horror structure of the game truly works result in gaming experiences that are unmatched by anything else. Although this game’s brilliance is not always present, it is easy to understand what makes it unique.
Mass Effect 3
Mass Effect 2 is regarded by many players as BioWare’s pinnacle achievement and one of the all-time great video games. Few people believed BioWare could surpass the original game when it came time to create a sequel since it is so excellent. Many continue to think they were correct.
The franchise’s zenith was reached with Mass Effect 3. Every option was meant to have an impact on the dramatic conclusion, but in reality, the outcome is determined by late-game decisions symbolized by the colors red, blue, or green. Both players and the game’s creators disliked the outcome. But does losing at the final line make the game less enjoyable overall? Not quite. The game is still a great experience with memorable characters and punchy combat. The DLC for it is also fantastic. There is no doubt that Mass Effect 3 was a letdown, but when everyone strives for absolute perfection, nothing, not even the best, can compare.
Watch Dogs 2
Overhyping Watch Dogs was a mistake by Ubisoft. The game’s plot, protagonist, and distinguishing hacking features fell short of Ubisoft’s claims, and it is best to keep quiet about the controversial “iconic hat” controversy and graphical decrease. Before the new franchise even started, Ubisoft alienated the fanbase.
Watch Dogs 2 was more of an excuse to address all of Watch Dogs’ complaints than it was a true sequel. Dominic Guay, Senior Producer, and Jonathan Morin, Creative Director, headed the development team that combed through online discussion boards and user reviews to determine what went wrong with the original game. Their efforts paid out, at least in terms of reviews, as reviewers complimented Watch Dogs 2’s tone shift, more endearing hero, and enhanced driving mechanics. Although Ubisoft took feedback into account and produced a greater sequel, the game’s sales performance remained the same.
Dino Crisis 2
The original Dino Crisis is justly adored for essentially providing a Resident Evil-inspired take on a Jurassic Park horror game. The franchise’s potential (and potentiality) is, however, best demonstrated by Dino Crisis 2.
Dino Crisis 2 trades in some of the survival horror ideas from the first game for a more action-focused (almost arcade-like) adventure. You receive extra points for killing dinosaurs quickly during “combo” precession, which you may spend to improve or buy new weapons and gear. It is a cross between Dino Crisis and Devil May Cry, and it is at least as fantastic as the image that pops into your brain when you hear that. Dino Crisis 2 could have served as the model for a fantastic new horror franchise that stood out from the competition, thus it is very unfortunate that Dino Crisis 3 was as horrible as it was. Instead, it is perhaps the best “What if?” Subsequent events.
Spec Ops: The Line
Spec Ops: The Line appears to be an ordinary third-person cover shooter on the surface. However, the Yager Development game is considerably more complex than it first appears. One of the most gripping and captivating tales in action game history can be found in this game. It is one of the few military games that makes an effort to avoid overly romanticizing combat.
Captain Walker, the protagonist, is not merely a bulky action hero. He is a soldier whose perception of the battlefield changes with time. Additionally, the game deceives you while you’re playing to replicate the way his mind was warped.
In summary, these underappreciated video games have encountered a variety of difficulties, ranging from poor marketing choices to poorly understood gameplay elements. However, each of them has distinctive traits that make them all worthwhile to revisit or learn about for the first time. These games merit praise for their unique contributions to the gaming industry. They have undoubtedly been unnoticed for too long, and it is now up to gamers to provide them the respect and affection they so well deserve.