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Top 10 Games That Ruined Your Childhood

VO: Adrian Sousa WRITTEN BY: Mark Sammut
For those of you that played these games awful games, you have our deepest condolences. Welcome to WatchMojo and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Games That Ruin Childhoods. Have an idea you want to see made into a WatchMojo video? Check out our suggest page at http://WatchMojo.comsuggest and submit your idea.

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Top 10 Games That Ruin Childhoods

Won't someone think of the children?! Welcome to WatchMojo and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Games That Ruin Childhoods.

For this list, we’re ranking the worst licensed games based on children’s IPs, which can include cartoons, live-action films, or even comics.

#10: “Ghostbusters” (2016)

This 1984 comedy may have starred four chain-smoking degenerates, but it was a different time and "Ghostbusters" quickly found legions of fans both old and young alike. Release to coincide with the 2016 reboot, Activision's twin-stick shooter embodies the worst aspects of passionless and by-the-numbers licensed games. Focusing on four new characters, "Ghostbusters" asks players to slog through ten ugly and repetitive stages, while offering little in the way of variety or rewards. Stumble across a ghost? Circle the specter and fire a beam in its general direction. Attacked by a bigger ghost? Repeat the process, although with the added bonus of waiting even longer to capture the spirit. Rinse and repeat for six hours.

#9: “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows” (2013)

Some things are better left in the sewer. "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows" does a decent enough job of aping Batman: Arkham Asylum's combat system, and even adds a number of cool team-based attacks, but this hack and slash title is a buggy mess. The Turtles randomly ignore commands, and there is no guarantee that the enemies necessary to complete a mission will actually spawn. "Out of the Shadows" is an especially frustrating experience because you can almost make out a decent game buried underneath all the trash.

#8: “The Wizard of Oz” (1993)

Unlike its iconic namesake film, there is nothing wonderful about this video game adaptation. One of many side-scrolling platformers published for the SNES, "The Wizard of Oz" boasts some charming visuals, but the pretty colors are hardly enough to distract from the wonky controls or the endless glitches. Moving at a glacial pace, "The Wizard of Oz" features four playable characters, but none of the options are particularly enjoyable to use. Dorothy frequently lacks the resources to deal with the overwhelming amount of enemies, and randomly falling through platforms is par for the course. Someone should have asked the Wizard for a game that’s actually fun.

#7: “An American Tail” (2007)

Yes, this thing exists. Why? Who the hell knows! Published more than two decades after Don Bluth's animated classic, "An American Tail" is a platformer that feels more like a collection of half-baked mini-games than a cohesive package. During one level, Fievel steps into a bubble and pretends to be in the worst "Super Monkey Ball" level ever conceived; fast forward a couple of missions and the adorable mouse is attempting to cross the street without getting trampled. A PlayStation 2 game that would have seemed dated on the console's predecessor, "An American Tail" should be erased from the history books.

#6: “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” (1989)

The Nintendo Entertainment System perfected the art of licensed shovelware, and this adaptation might be the most disappointing of the bunch. Stepping into private investigator Eddie Valiant's shoes, the player spends the majority of "Who Framed Roger Rabbit" exploring buildings in search of four clues, leading to a boss fight against Judge Doom. While the game's premise is not offensive, the exploration is tedious and, more often than not, frustrating. To make matters even worse, the fight against Judge Doom is a mind-numbing slog that significantly ramps up the difficulty for no apparent reason. You wanna know the kicker? "Who Framed Roger Rabbit" was developed by Rare.

#5: “Aquaman: Battle for Atlantis” (2003)

If "Spider-Man 2" and "Batman: Arkham Asylum" serve as examples of how to correctly adapt a superhero license, "Aquaman: Battle for Atlantis" is the polar opposite. Developed at a time when Aquaman was hardly the most beloved DC character in the business, this release quickly earned a reputation for being dead in the water. In addition to torturous visuals and the nonsensical story, "Battle for Atlantis" manages to be the worst thing a game can possibly be: boring. For approximately six hours, Aquaman swims around the seemingly abandoned Atlantis seeking goons to punch in the face. That is basically the entire campaign.

#4: “The Simpsons Wrestling” (2001)

Since the early '90s, Bart and company have starred in dozens of games (many of them less than stellar), but "The Simpsons Wrestling" raised the level of incompetence to unprecedented heights! Even though some of the cartoon's boundless wit survived the adaptation process, "The Simpsons Wrestling" looks and plays like absolute garbage. Graphics are not everything, but the choppy animation makes it seem like Springfield is in the middle of a seizure epidemic, while the beat 'em up combat has no sense of rhythm or even the tiniest hint of depth. "The Simpsons Wrestling" feels like a parody created by the cartoon to mock licensed games.

#3: “Back to the Future” (1989)

Remember that scene when Marty McFly slings pies at a never-ending army of Fonzies and Danny Zukos? Apparently the NES does! Published a couple of months before "Back to the Future: Part II" hit theaters, this movie-licensed game possesses a touch more ambition than some of its contemporaries, but a handful of neat mini-games provide only a brief respite from the monotonous main levels. Making matters even worse, Marty appears to be composed of glass, as the time traveler dies after just one hit, forcing the level to be restarted. Hey, at least, the theme song never stops playing. There is no way that could ever get annoying!

#2: “Superman 64” (1999)

Based on "Superman: The Animated Series," this Nintendo 64 classic has attained a level of notoriety that few other games have been able to achieve. Describing something as "one of the worst ever" is often hyperbolic, but "Superman 64" is the genuine article. Poorly optimized and glitchy enough to make Bethesda blush, Superman 64's hoop segments are the stuff of legend, but the terribleness extends to the indoor levels and the laughable multiplayer. The Man of Steel deserves better than a slapped together mess with no redeeming features such as this.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few dishonorable mentions.

“Nickelodeon Party Blast” (2002)

“Shrek: Super Party” (2002)

“SpongeBob Heropants” (2015)

#1: “E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial” (1982)

Licensed games tend to be rather forgettable, but only one example nearly dragged the entire industry into the gutter. Rushed out for the holiday season, "E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial" lacks any of the film's irresistible charm or whimsy. Now, in all fairness, worse games were released for the Atari 2600, but the company greatly overestimated "E.T.'s" commercial viability, resulting in millions of unsold cartridges and a literal mass burial. While not the only contributing factor, "E.T.'s" failure is considered to have played a huge part in 1983's video game crash. That, boys and girls, is a childhood-ruining game with a huge blast radius.

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