This photo was taken as the bear was giving the murder weapon a shove
January 9, 2015 2:14 PM   Subscribe

2014 Box Art Walk Of Shame At the end of each year, GamesRadar's Lucas Sullivan reviews the past fifty-weeks worth of new video game box art and compiles a list of the worst of the bad art offenders. From major first-party releases to the latest in shovelware and beyond, no game with stock art, Photoshop errors, or uninspired ideas is safe.

Witness Pac-Man's angry Kirby eyebrows, a murderous Sherlock Holmes, a game with art so lazy it couldn't even be bothered to display its entire title on the box, a racist Mahjong game, and Sonic the Hedgehog looking bored. My favorite is from a game called Winx Club: Saving Alfea that has two characters with the same cut 'n' paste face.
On the day that they finally cart me off to an insane asylum, I'll be screaming 'THE FAIRIES! THEY HAVE THE SAME FACE! IT'S A COPY-PASTE JOB FOR TWO CHARACTERS WHO ARE STANDING RIGHT NEXT TO EACH OTHER! CAN'T YOU SEE IT?! AHA! AHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!' Decades after my death, the truth about Winx Club: Saving Alfea will finally be uncovered, and my name will be posthumously cleared of all criminal charges.
posted by Servo5678 (33 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
 
The reviewer is so uncharitable that I think he sucked Red Cross out of existence and closed 74 foodbanks just by writing this article.
posted by Thing at 2:26 PM on January 9, 2015 [2 favorites]


I read the titl of that hunting game as "Bro Hunts" at first, something I'd also be totally on board with.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 2:31 PM on January 9, 2015 [1 favorite]


After all, bros are the most dangebrous game.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 2:34 PM on January 9, 2015 [6 favorites]


Box art is generally not deserving of charity. And I'm happy to see that Kirby Face is becoming a recognized thing.
posted by JHarris at 2:50 PM on January 9, 2015 [1 favorite]


Under Fable Of Dwarfs:

If this box art taught me anything, it's that 'dwarfs' is just as acceptable a pluralization as 'dwarves'.

I thought dwarves is something Tolkien started?
posted by JHarris at 3:04 PM on January 9, 2015


hunting game. . . this photo was taken right as this vengeful bear was giving the murder weapon a hefty shove . . .

Support the right to arm bears.
 
posted by Herodios at 3:09 PM on January 9, 2015 [4 favorites]


Box... art?
posted by MartinWisse at 3:10 PM on January 9, 2015 [1 favorite]


That is not even the worst thing that Winx Club has ever caused to happen.
posted by Wolfdog at 3:11 PM on January 9, 2015 [1 favorite]


Thing: "The reviewer is so uncharitable that I think he sucked Red Cross out of existence and closed 74 foodbanks just by writing this article."

Did you get to Jurassic Mahjong? Because holy crap.
posted by boo_radley at 3:11 PM on January 9, 2015 [2 favorites]


Or "Mining Industry"? Or "World of Leaders"?
posted by JHarris at 3:13 PM on January 9, 2015 [2 favorites]


I think looking like ... terrible ... is at least kind of deliberately part of the "niche industry sim game" aesthetic though for some reason.
posted by Wolfdog at 3:14 PM on January 9, 2015 [2 favorites]


I think the sentence I just wrote is pretty clear evidence that something about this post broke me, and I'm going to go have a bath and a glass of cider.
posted by Wolfdog at 3:15 PM on January 9, 2015 [5 favorites]


What? That Fantasy Life box art is lovely. I would like to explore that world.

an unintelligible green mess while a dragon barfs out people

Why is this in any way undesirable. Dude just described my Ultimate Mardi Gras
posted by Greg Nog at 3:21 PM on January 9, 2015 [8 favorites]


Metafilter: "New genre reference."
posted by dannyboybell at 3:30 PM on January 9, 2015 [5 favorites]


Greg Nob, he admitted that the Fantasy Life box art was nice... when zoomed in like it is here. Shrunken down on a 3DS cover, a lot of that detail is just going to be lost.
posted by JHarris at 3:35 PM on January 9, 2015


I think I'm right in staying that both Holmes and Watson used (or at least equipped themselves with) revolvers in the original Conan Doyle stories. Maybe the writer's getting Holmes mixed up with Batman?

(Yes, I know Batman used a gun in his earliest appearances, and has done so again in some of his more recent grimdark incarnations, but overall - ahem - cannon is that he doesn't like the things.)
posted by Paul Slade at 4:38 PM on January 9, 2015


I think the nonsensical lighting and the fact that the scene is staged like they're standing over a dude that Watson just axe-murdered were the bigger issues. Also, I now want to learn saxophone just so that I can go to press conferences and play it while maintaining unbroken eye-contact with the speaker.

Greg Nob is the best alternate universe evil Greg Nog
posted by Navelgazer at 4:55 PM on January 9, 2015 [5 favorites]


Yeah, Holmes definitely had and used guns.

An exhaustive list of guns in Sherlock Holmes novels.
posted by thefoxgod at 5:00 PM on January 9, 2015 [1 favorite]


A 59 item slideshow, you say?
posted by codacorolla at 5:45 PM on January 9, 2015 [10 favorites]


23: Falling Skies - the Game

Our hero Tom Mason has just looked up to the most horrifying realization imaginable: he's starring in the Falling Skies video game. And like any courageous leader, he's hoping that he can blast the logo out of the air before his compatriots notice it, so that they may continue to live life in blissful ignorance.

Okay, that one made me laugh out loud.
posted by DingoMutt at 5:56 PM on January 9, 2015 [3 favorites]


38. Natural Doctrine
Here's another piece of box art that's not offensively bad - it's just that it would never, ever, ever grab your attention sitting on a store shelf. I think I dozed off somewhere between reading the 'Natural' and 'Doctrine' bits.


The box art is mostly focused on a huge, half-ruined castle. And you know what? That got my interest. Enough for me to open a new browser tab and Google the game. I like games that are essentially about wandering around in one of Piranesi's prison drawings, and that cover kinda promised that.

Turns out it's a mediocre strategy combat game. Oh well. Back to waiting for From's next game.
posted by egypturnash at 7:39 PM on January 9, 2015 [1 favorite]


like "elfs", "dwarfs" is preferable to "dwarves" because it makes nerd-pedants twitch amusingly
posted by NoraReed at 8:14 PM on January 9, 2015 [3 favorites]


The box art is mostly focused on a huge, half-ruined castle. And you know what? That got my interest. Enough for me to open a new browser tab and Google the game. I like games that are essentially about wandering around in one of Piranesi's prison drawings, and that cover kinda promised that.

Hah, same here. If I saw that in GameStop I would definitely check the back (if I ever went into GameStop any more).
posted by codacorolla at 8:39 PM on January 9, 2015


Greg Nob, he admitted that the Fantasy Life box art was nice... when zoomed in like it is here. Shrunken down on a 3DS cover, a lot of that detail is just going to be lost.

His caveat is "from a distance". Is his complaint that he's too lazy to walk a couple of feet toward the box in the store? Or that he's unable to zoom in on a jpeg he saw online? Is the dude unfamiliar with the idea that objects gain resolution when one gets closer to them? To be honest, this guy seems like a real Complaining Connie, in my opinion
posted by Greg Nog at 9:24 PM on January 9, 2015 [1 favorite]


His caveat is "from a distance". Is his complaint that he's too lazy to walk a couple of feet toward the box in the store?

Hey, I'm not necessarily disagreeing, but its a 3DS box we're talking about. There's some pretty fine detail in that logo. It's one of the more questionable inclusions, true.
posted by JHarris at 9:33 PM on January 9, 2015


Am I the only one annoyed that this is laid out so that I have to scroll to either see either the entire image or more than the first two sentences of the description on every single page?
posted by thecjm at 9:44 PM on January 9, 2015 [4 favorites]


There are a few nuggets of awful in there - Jurrassic Mahjong is a fine example of excellent artistic ability put to stupid use - but mostly they're just mediocre or even OK art. This should have been a top five, or even a top three.
posted by Slap*Happy at 4:21 AM on January 10, 2015


A 59 item slideshow, you say?

Am I the only one annoyed that this is laid out so that I have to scroll to either see either the entire image or more than the first two sentences of the description on every single page?


Also, pop-up ads!
posted by Fleebnork at 5:23 AM on January 10, 2015


I didn't get any pop-up ads, but I will agree that the Natural Doctrine cover looked gorgeous to me. Different strokes, who knew?
posted by Navelgazer at 5:51 AM on January 10, 2015


Greg Nob is the best alternate universe evil Greg Nog

Especially if you imagine him as this sort of Nob.
posted by McCoy Pauley at 6:12 AM on January 10, 2015 [2 favorites]


Jurrassic Mahjong isn't even an example of a terrible box cover as the terrible part is the in-game start screen. This guy's reaching
posted by I-baLL at 10:23 AM on January 10, 2015


You know, I actually like this box art's style - these five heroes look pretty awesome, and the composition is totally fine. There's just one problem: that dude in the top right, Malakhim, is actually a DLC character who isn't included in the base game.

Seriously, at least a few people are going to Hell for this.
posted by WCWedin at 12:42 PM on January 10, 2015 [2 favorites]


Hah, same here. If I saw that in GameStop I would definitely check the back (if I ever went into GameStop any more).

And me! So, yeah, I think his assessment of this one is actually demonstrably wrong, which is an impressive level of failure for art criticism.
posted by howfar at 1:58 AM on January 11, 2015


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