The NES brought gamers worldwide hours upon hours of pure, unadulterated joy, and was, by far, the best console of its time. In 1989, Compute! magazine stated that Nintendo had sold seven million NES systems in 1988. In recent years, the 8-bit classics have managed to make a comeback. Its popularity even spawned the creation of a mini NES Classic console that contains 30 pre-downloaded games. Nintendo's NES brought us wonderful titles like Super Mario Bros., and The Legend of Zelda, but that doesn't mean every title was a hit.
With almost 1,000 games released for the NES, obviously, some of them aren't going to hold up. Considering the times, features such as graphics and controls were bound to have their fair share of faults. Certain games showed problems such as: faulty controls, obnoxious music, and confusing gameplay. There are plenty of terrible movie spin-offs that found their way onto the NES, as well as, lame superhero platformers, and plenty of awful sports games. It wouldn't be right to leave out all the arcade ports that just plain didn't translate well onto the system. The 80s and 90s left us all with a wealth of gaming treasures. And then there are the games that people claim to love, but don't hold up well at all. Here is a list of awful games its time we forget.
15 Batman: The Video Game
Based on the Tim Burton film, Batman: The Video Game was brought to us in 1989 by SunSoft. The Joker has kidnapped Journalist, and Bruce Wayne's girlfriend, Vicki Vale. In typical Batman fashion, players use a range of "bat-gadgets," and a barrage of fists to barrel through enemies.
The variety of henchmen Batman encounters have very little to do with the movie. If the player manages to get past the flame throwers and commandoes, then they still have the challenge of scaling the building's themselves. Players can make it to the top of a building, just to plummet back to square one and have to start all over again. It's frustrating. There are plenty of sub-boss battles on the way to the Joker, ranging from Moth Man to strange battle machines. All of which, are annoying.
14 Baseball Stars
SNK Corp. and Nintendo gave gamers the gift of Baseball Stars back in 1989. A gift that, if returned, would not be missed. Players can create their own teams and play in their own leagues. Baseball Stars was the first NES sports game that allowed gamers to also create their own individual players. All of these are great features, but they just don't make up for the wonky gameplay.
Whether a player is batting or pitching, the controls aren't accurate. It is difficult to get the outfielders to catch, and throw the ball back to the pitcher. Aiming a hit is just as bad. There is no telling where the ball is going to go. Ultimately, more time needed to be put into developing the gameplay itself, and less time spent on customizing features.
13 Friday the 13th
Friday the 13th by LJN has been dubbed by many as one of the worst games of all time, with good reason. Players have six camp counselors to choose from, each with a different starting point on the Camp Crystal Lake map. The objective is simple. Beat the swarms of horror movie cliché monsters, and stop Jason from killing everyone.
The controls are terrible. Navigating the cabins is nearly impossible. Players use rocks to fend off enemies while working their way up to better weapons, such as torches and knives. Jason easily kills off the majority of the children, and fellow counselors, while players are fighting through hoards of monsters in an attempt to catch him. If the player is able to catch Jason, then there is the matter of trying to stay alive. It isn't hard for the masked killer to slash right through the camp counselors.
12 Bible Adventures
Bible Adventures was released in 1990 by Wisdom Tree for all gamers to loathe. Players have three quests to choose from: Noah's Ark, David and Goliath, or Baby Moses. Each story follows stories from the Bible. The game was never sold in conventional game shops. Bible Adventures could only be purchased in christian book stores, or by calling 1-800-77-BIBLE.
Gameplay strongly resembles Super Mario Bros 2, only worse. In Noah's ark, players wander aimlessly finding, and bringing back animals for the ark. The objective of Baby Moses is to get the baby safely out of Egypt. For David and Goliath, players heard sheep while avoiding wild, hungry beasts, eventually making their way to battle Goliath. All three story quests are extremely boring. The levels are repetitive. The music is terrible. Bible Adventures absolutely does not deserve its place in gaming history.
11 Terminator 2: Judgement Day-
Like all movie-based games, Terminator 2: Judgement Day doesn't even come close to living up to the movie's hype. The intro music sets the tone for the game right off the bat. Horrible. Players wander levels aimlessly through levels beating up Hulk Hogan look-a-likes. Arnold can naturally pick up a range of assault weapons along the way. Gameplay clearly did not undergo a thorough testing process.
Fighting enemies is glitchy. The bad guys (while being beaten) turn transparent and take forever to defeat. The difficulty of the famous bike scene is unreal. There sheer number of things to focus on is too great. Most fo the stages are filled with frustrating hazards that take a huge number of attempts to get through. Ultimately, the game drops the proverbial ball.
10 Menace Beach
Menace Beach was created in 1990 by Color Dreams. Players set out as a skateboarder whose girlfriend has been kidnapped by the evil Demon, Dan. The game starts with Bunny, the skaters girlfriend, shown shackled to a wall, and pleading for help. Players use miscellaneous items they collect along the way to take out a range of random enemies, like ninjas and clowns. Watch out for sumo wrestlers as simply running into one is enough to instantly take a life, and they appear out of nowhere.
The levels are short, and boring. As the levels progress, Bunny's clothes begin to mysteriously "rot" away. She continues to grow angrier the longer it takes to execute her rescue. When a player finally reaches the end, Bunny is stripped down to nothing, but her bra and panties. That feature caused quite a bit of controversy.
9 Ghosts 'n Goblins
Released in 1986 by Capcom, Ghosts 'n Goblins follows Sir Arthur's adventure to rescue the princess from Satan, king of the Demon World. The game has a reputation of being one of the hardest games period. Players only have two lives. The first hit takes out his armor, leaving him in a loincloth, and the second hit does poor Arthur in. Enemies range from zombies and ogres to demons and dragons. They charge the player quickly, and in large numbers.
There are six levels in total. Each one is extremely difficult, and not in a fun and challenging way. The "two strikes and you're out" style gameplay makes each level near impossible to clear. Spare armor is very hard to come across, but it is available on the occasional level.
Nintendo first released Golf back in 1984. It pretty much set the mechanics for golf games to come. The game is played in total silence, with the only sound being the effects themselves. A game with no music sets a boring tone right from the start. The reception of the "power bar" method of gameplay, used by most golf games, is highly dependent on its accuracy. Sadly, this game's accuracy is no good.
If the player manages to land themselves in a bunker, it can be nearly impossible to escape. A player can easily rack up 15 strokes trying to get back on the green. The wind feature in this particular golf game is unpredictable. The wind speed doesn't seem to effect the direction of the ball directly. Being that Golf was the first game of its kind for the NES, it's no surprise that it has faults.
7 Bubble Bobble
Created by Taito America Corp. in 1988, Bubble Bobble is a game featuring two cute dinosaurs named Bub and Bob. The objective is for players to scale their way down the Cave of Monsters in pursuit of their two lovely girlfriends. While the dinosaurs are cute and the objective romantic, the game itself is lacking in more than one category.
The Cave of Monsters is stacked with 100 very repetitive levels, and the music alone is enough to drive anyone into a state of temporary madness. The entirety of the players' time is spent capturing monsters in bubbles, then proceeding to pop them. There is a wider range of fruits and vegetables for these two herbivores to munch on than there are enemies to face. It's a mystery as to why IGN gave Bubble Bobble a rating of 7.5/10.
6 Super Mario Bros. 2
Super Mario Bros. is without a shadow of a doubt Nintendo's most iconic gaming franchise, and potentially the most famous franchise of all time. Following the successful release of the original, Super Mario Bros. 2 brought fans a new approach to the instant classic. It is safe to say the changes didn't stick, as the following games far more resembled the original.
Players have four characters to choose from. Each of these provides a new wrinkle to the gameplay, as each character has their own individual strengths. Gameplay relies heavily on picking up, and throwing items. It's tedious and quickly becomes frustrating. There are few coins to collect. Instead, players rely on finding mushrooms to increase the number of hits they can take. Boss battles are more difficult than the ones in the game's predecessor. Once the player completes a level, there is a bonus "slot machine" style game. The slots spin extremely quickly, leaving the player almost no chance at scoring a win. Super Mario Bros 2 ultimately does not compare in quality to any of the other games in the series.
5 Top Players' Tennis
Developed in 1989 by Home Data, Top Players' Tennis heavily stars champions Chris Evert and Ivan Lendl. Both Ivan and Chris were ranked number one in the Association of Tennis Professionals, otherwise known as ATP. This isn't the first game of its kind, and it certainly isn't the best. The gameplay is terrible. The testing process for this game's development must have been extremely short. Controls are far from accurate. Players will spend the majority of their time simply trying to serve the ball without catching a penalty. When the players finally manage to serve the ball in bounds, the next challenge arises. Players will struggle to keep the ball in bounds, as aiming the ball is difficult. The game's controls need a complete overhaul. In fact, the entire game could use one.
4 Super Pitfall
Released in 1987 by Activision, Super Pitfall stars explorer Harry on his quest to find the Raj diamond, and rescue Quickclaw, his sidekick. The game is set to be a remake of Pitfall II: Lost Caverns. The game was dubbed by Computer Gaming World as "a Super Mario Bros. rehash that most NES users could play in their sleep." While the original Pitfall received rave reviews, Super Pitfall is regarded as one of the worst NES games of all time. Lives are limited, and the caverns are full of all kinds of creatures straight out of an Indiana Jones flick. This time around Harry comes equipped with a gun. Bullets must be acquired along the way. Whether it's the cheesy melody, or the obnoxious levels, Super Pitfall truly doesn't deserve its place in history.
3 Fun House
Fun House is a game based loosely on the North American adaptation of the television game show FunHaus, and was released in 1991 by Realtime Associates Inc. The game is an action/shooter where the player's goal is to hit targets with tomatoes before the time runs out. The player is on roller skates, which make things slightly more challenging. The controls for moving them are uncomfortable. Players can easily fly off in the wrong direction with the tap of a button. The music is cheesy and quickly becomes annoying. There are a total of 72 rooms/levels in the game. While each level may have its own objective, they all look the same. It is hard to say what's more annoying, the boring, repetitive levels, or the game show hosts obnoxious commentary in between levels.
Reminiscent to some other gnarly, green amphibians we all know, Battletoads made its way on the scene in 1991. The game was developed by Rare, and has a reputation for being one of the most difficult NES games in history. The main characters, Zitz, Rash, and Pimple, are on a mission to defeat the evil Dark Queen and her mutant army.
The game actually managed to get its own spin-off cartoon series. The show made it on the list of Topless Robot's list of five "worst one-shot TV cartoons ever made," and the game deserves its spot on this list as well. Enemies are tedious without providing a challenge, and take too many hits to take out. Boss battles involve avoiding onslaughts of laser attacks from giant robots. Battletoads is a true rip-off of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
1 Balloon Fight
Released by Nintendo in 1986, Balloon Fight is a two-player action game. The main objective is to pop the enemy bird's balloons while keeping their own intact. The main music during gameplay is reminiscent of the sound of nails on a chalkboard. Players will get tired of constantly pressing the "A" button just to stay afloat. The levels are very repetitive, and all look the same. The area is small, and quickly become packed with enemies as players progress through the game. The game consists of nothing but balloon popping and floating much farther than intended. Ultimately, the whole game's concept is pretty boring. All in all, Balloon Fight doesn't deserve its place on the NES Classic's roster, but absolutely earned its place on the list of famous NES games that don't deserve their spot in history.