This year has brought a wave of anticipation for gamers, especially for those awaiting the return of the iconic King Kong in a new video game.
But if expectations were skyscrapers, Skull Island: Rise of Kong, would be the plane crashing into them.
This game has not only been dubbed the most disappointing release of the year but also competes for the title of the worst game.
This is King Kong’s first return to the gaming world since the 2005 release of Peter Jackson’s King Kong: The Official Game of the Movie.
The 2005 game, developed by Ubisoft, offered a fresh blend of first-person combat and third-person action.
Players relished the duality of playing both as Kong and a human, accompanied by a unique no-HUD experience.
Fast forward to 2023, Skull Island: Rise of Kong reduces this legacy to a monotonous beat-’em-up riddled with subpar visuals and uninspiring cutscenes.
While the game didn’t get a lot of attention after its summer announcement, it couldn’t remain shielded from the discerning eyes of the gaming community for long.
Last week, X buzzed with clips showcasing its mediocre graphics and performance.
One such clip, shared by @RickDaSquirrel, exposed a lackluster cutscene with Kong’s distorted memory, portrayed through a static image.
This was followed by an ungainly display of Kong in action, which felt reminiscent of malfunctioning theme park animatronics rather than a gaming marvel of 2023.
The game’s performance on Switch, showcased by another clip, was nothing short of a disaster. Performance issues, even during a simple brawl against crabs, became painfully evident.
YouTube’s @MKIceAndFire took the audacious step of broadcasting the game’s initial hours, and the results were sad.
The monotony of fighting indistinguishable enemies in identical backdrops was made worse by an unending loop of generic music.
A scene intended to evoke sorrow, featuring a young Kong staring at his reflection, was rendered comical due to the blurry, pixelated image that remained on screen for an uncomfortably extended period.
Given such glaring issues, it’s unsurprising that the game has received massive backlash. While there’s hope that the subsequent parts of the game may offer redemption, the $40 price tag seems too steep a gamble.
Online discussions have rapidly shifted from critiquing Skull Island: Rise of Kong to debates about whether it stands as the year’s absolute worst, even overshadowing the infamy of Gollum.
What’s undeniable is the game’s strong contention for the bottom spot, especially since its closest rival—a poorly executed clone of The Last of Us — was expelled from the eShop.