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News video games 26 May 2023, 14:44

author: Jakub Tarchala

Gollum and Redfall in Duel for Worst Game of the Year Title

LotR Gollum and Redfall are collecting very low ratings - so bad that both titles can already aspire to be „the worst AAA game of 2023.”.

It's May, but gamers have already singled out two candidates for the title of "worst AAA game of 2023" - they are LotR Gollum and Redfall. Both games collect poor reviews, but each for different reasons.

LotR Gollum vs. Redfall, or who made the worse game

For the purpose of comparison we took the average ratings of reviews on Metacritic. Going to the "Game of the Year" tab, we see the ranking covering 298 items released in 2023 (PC and console versions are displayed separately, so some titles may repeat).

The Lord of the Rings: Gollum closes the ranking with a score of 43/100 (for the PC version) and 40/100 (for PS5).

  1. The 8th-gen console and Xbox Series S/X versions are not included, as they have less than 7 reviews.
  2. On OpenCritic, which extracts the average of reviews across all platforms, the title also closes the list of 217 games with a poor score of 42/100.

Redfall fairs slightly better on the charts.

  1. On Metacritic, the game received a score of 56/100 (for Xbox Series S/X) and 54/100 (for PC).
  2. Admittedly, the difference between LotR Gollum and Redfall is a not inconsiderable 13-14 points, but still the latter occupies the lower regions of the ranking.
  3. On OpenCritic the game's average rating is 58/100 based on 124 reviews.

LotR Golum - why is it so bad?

The Lord of the Rings: Gollum debuted on May 25, but the game made a poor name for itself much earlier - the first gameplay, dated July 2022, was received coldly, mainly due to poor visuals. Fuel to the fire was added by information about the huge system requirements - inadequate for the severely outdated graphics. Doubts were also sown by the fact that the publisher set an embargo on reviews, in force until the day of the game's release, which usually does not bode well. Disaster hung in the air.

Today we know that the game is indeed weak - the critics accuse it of outdated graphics and poor optimization. The game was also criticized for numerous technical issues and uninteresting, repetitive tasks.

Players on Reddit threw in their two cents, especially on the topic of terrible optimization. At 4K resolution and Ultra settings with ray tracing enabled LotR Gollum put to shame even the might RTX 4090. The card achieved an average of 35 frames per second. Unfortunately, the developers failed when it comes to providing players with a polished game.

Gollum and Redfall in Duel for Worst Game of the Year Title - picture #1
Source: GameGPU.

Redfall - what went wrong?

Redfall premiered on May 2, this year and, despite average ratings, performed a tad better than LotR Golum - especially in technical terms. Unfortunately, it is a game made from a template, without an interesting idea for itself. The missions are boring and the shooting model (that is, the main fun element) is simplistic. The game lacks a neat progression system or anything that would encourage you to stay with it for longer.

However, the biggest issue seems to be the fact that experienced developer Arkane Studios is behind the game, whose credits include two great installments of Dishonored. Redfall was unanimously hailed by gamers and critics as the worst game in the studio's history.

Jakub Tarchala

Jakub Tarchala

He started by producing content on YouTube in 2020, but eventually found out writing was his real jam. He set up a modest blog where he published video game reviews, and two years later combined his work with his hobby and started writing for Gamepressure. He loves Terry Pratchett's offbeat sense of humor and the philosophical mysteries of the universe embedded in Stanislaw Lem's novels. He enjoys watching comedies and horror movies. He has a profound affection for the Stalker universe (electronic, written, and pasted). In his spare time he plays guitar and collects Marvel cards.


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