The overwhelming majority of bad video games are simply released, get pilloried by players and press alike, and then quietly fade into the ether of irrelevance, destined to be forgotten.
Yet just because a game isn’t very good, that doesn’t mean it can’t make an impact.
And as these 10 video games all prove, it’s entirely possible for downright terrible pieces of interactive entertainment to shape the industry.
These video games all received mixed-at-best reviews from critics and many didn’t make much of a dent with gamers either, and yet the ripples of their influence are still felt today, years or even decades later. Who’da thunk it?
Perhaps their failure ushered in a major new market trend, other developers capitalised on the game’s One Good Idea, or it served as a cautionary tale to the rest of the industry.
Whatever the means, these games all had a lasting impact on video games as we know them that extends far beyond their sales figures and Metacritic scores.
For as much as they might be laughing stocks where moment-to-moment gameplay is concerned, these games all changed the industry one way or another, for better or - as is sadly often the case - worse…
10. The Order: 1886 Killed Off Smaller AAA Games
The Order: 1886 is one of Sony's rare AAA blockbuster misses in recent years - a visually stunning yet mechanically clunky and, dare one say, aggressively generic third-person action game that didn't move the needle an inch and quickly evaporated into the pop-culture ether.
One of the primary complaints about The Order was its short play-time of around 5-6 hours, which for a game selling for the typical AAA retail price simply seemed like an atrocious value proposition any way you slice it.
Yet The Order's critical and commercial failure had a slyly tectonic impact on the industry as a whole, effectively hammering the final nail in the coffin of smaller, more linear AAA tentpole games.
The focus became greater than ever on ensuring that AAA blockbusters gave players their "money's worth," which often equated to bloating the critical path out with tedious busy-work. Looking at you, Final Fantasy VII Remake.
Mega-budget games with short play-times were effectively phased out, in turn teeing up the rise of the "AA" game - that is, ambitious lower-budget titles that look AAA, like Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice and, more recently, Fort Solis.
The Order's failure fundamentally changed both the industry and consumers' expectations of AAA games, while also birthing a revolution of glossy AA fare punching well above its weight.