What Sports Game From The First Third of the Year Failed The Most?

Posted May 1st, 2012 at 11:15 am

The primary releases from the first four months of 2012 may best be remembered for their major issues than what they got right. There were a few good games in the mix but even those didn’t arrive in clean fashion or even fix what ailed them later on.

That got me to thinking – which of these games failed you and/or what companies have been the most unethical with their practices? A significant investment is made whether $20 for the UEFA DLC, $60 for the standard retail games, or $80 for those who bought both versions of The Show. It’s unfortunate that issues of such a nature that truely affect the experience and value have arisen with these games and the severity of them have certainly stood out beyond what is typically accepted as the norm. Continue on for a recap of where these games have faltered, vote in the poll, and leave your thoughts on the topic in the comments. 

UFC Undisputed 3
•10 fighters – many of which arguably should have been on the base roster – held back for DLC.
•Confusing process to obtain a free Alistair Overeem and codes that didn’t go out smoothly.
•Ignored community requests over months only to put out surveys later.
•2 1/2 months later and still no patch.
•Poor online performance.

MLB 12: The Show
•First patch breaks save compatibility between the PS3 and Vita for the heavily advertised and crucial cross-platform play feature.
•First patch causes freezes for many with their Franchise and RTTS forcing restarts.
•Second patch causes more problems.
•Online Home Run Derby advertised but not delivered.
•Terrible online performance and poorly designed Diamond Dynasty mode.

MLB 2K12
•MLB Today Season didn’t work for the first two weeks of the season and it continues to have issues making the biggest feature addition worthless.
•Could only beat The Show in 6 of 27 player face comparison matchups.
•No patch until well into May because of the Perfect Game Contest.
•Just in general a very poor effort all around.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 13
•DLC costs rise – an absurd $67 worth of extra courses.
•Wacky purchase system on PS3 costs consumers extra money.
•More courses held back as DLC than provided as part of the game.
•Game Face feature broken.

•Deceptive advertising in regards to unlicensed nations.
•Nearly half are unlicensed – something EA never mentioned until called out after release.

  • Jren

    seems like this is the worst year yet but ironically ea is the one that might save it with ncaa madden and fifa.

  • Steve Raycraft

    Personally, it was UEFA 2012.  I thought it was a smart idea to release it as a DLC and not as a stand-alone game.  However, I dislike the fact that they didn’t mention the sheer volume of unlicensed teams included.  That alone deterred me from purchasing the DLC.  

    Now that the first half is almost behind us, I’m looking forward to the next iteration of the various EA Sports series and hope they actually decide to implement some suggestions that the community has been asking for in these games.  Even know I know the chance is slim, I’m also hoping that EA will release a couple more games for the PC again. 

  • mcmax3000

    I honestly don’t know that I could pick a “winner” here.

    I think the ‘other’ category in the poll is the most interesting because those ones were fine as far as delivering on promises and not shipping in a broken state, but as far as sales go, three of the four were undoubtedly failures (FIFA Street might’ve made up for its North American failure in other countries but I haven’t heard of it doing well elsewhere) and the fourth (NFL Blitz), likely was as well (I’ve never heard of sales numbers of Blitz).

    Upon further consideration, I think I’d have to give it to UEFA 2012. When it was first announced as a $20 FIFA add-on, it received pretty much unanimous praise for being $20 DLC instead of a $60 retail product, and then fast forward to launch day, and it basically got universal hate for something that could’ve been avoided simply by EA being up front about the licensing situation.

    Yes, having half the teams unlicensed would’ve sucked either way, but if people had known that from the beginning instead of finding that out after they bought the expansion, it would’ve been MUCH more acceptable.

    • FIFA Street was the top selling game in the UK a few weeks ago and has been #2 since. That’s a huge market and they’re beating huge titles like Mass Effect 3 and even FIFA 12.

      I don’t know why anyone would think North America is a key market for FIFA Street.
      It’s only an okay game, but I would be shocked if it was as much of a failure as NFL Blitz.

      • mcmax3000

        If that’s the case, FIFA Street may very well have been an overall success for EA.

        I hadn’t heard about how it had done elsewhere but I definitely figured (and have said here in the past) that just because FIFA Street was a miserable failure here in North America doesn’t necessarily mean the game was a flop.

      • Keith.

        This is just EA nonsense.

        The UK is not a “huge” sales number market. Check vgchartz — last week, Fifa Street sold 26,000 copies and it was good for 3rd on the UK chart, and another 20,000 on the 360 which was good for 5th place. In the U.S., those are Backbreaker-type numbers. Take a look at the top 10 Global sales from last week (or any other) and Fifa Street is nowhere to be found.

        The game bombed, pure and simple.

  • Keith.

    Hey pasta, just curious why you’ve never given any love to The Show’s Challenge of the Week mode. It’s fun, a good challenge, it gets changed up weekly and involves some pretty cool prizes, and beyond all that, it’s free.  They also did a fantastic job with the Move controls this year.  Personally, I don’t see how The Show even belongs in this thread about series disappointments.

    • mcmax3000

      I played it a few times last year & it felt pretty much the same each week. It was the same basic setup, just with different players each week. Also, only the first try each week was free, after that they wanted money for each try.

      It wasn’t bad or anything, it just didn’t hold my interest past getting the trophy for playing it a certain number of weeks in a row.

      Have they made many changes to it this year, or is it pretty much the same? I still haven’t redeemed the Online Pass for it so I haven’t touched anything to do with the online stuff.

      While I agree that this year’s game is fantastic & I understand including it on this list given how bad the online apparently was at launch & how many problems the patches have given people.

      That said, I’ve been playing solely offline & I haven’t had any of the issues with the patches that others have mentioned so there’s no way it would get my vote.

      • Keith.

        The biggest change in the mode from last year to this year is that, this year, the mode is completely free.  

        I barely played it at all last year since they were charging for it (other than the 1 free try each week).  This year, however, I’ve found myself becoming addicted to it — it really is a great mode to play when I’ve only got 30 minutes or so.  The first couple weeks I couldn’t get higher than 85,000 points or so, but last night (in the Jeter v. David Price challenge) I got on a bit of a roll and hit 350,000.  I’m going to stick with it until I crack the top 10 one of these weeks.

        • mcmax3000

           I finally redeemed my online pass & gave the new Challenge of the Week a try.

          Making it completely free is a huge improvement over last year & I can definitely see myself playing it more this year for that reason alone.

          I do wish they’d vary the challenge a little bit week to week instead of it always being the same objective, just with different players but this year is definitely a step in the right direction.

          • Keith.

            Glad to hear you’re giving it a shot — let me know when you better my 350,000 score (I’m not that great so it probably won’t take you long).  

            I could be mistaken but I do think some of the scoring details change every week (such as, take 10 balls during a session, foul off so many pitches, etc.).  Either way, I’m really liking the mode this year.  Good move by SCEA to make it completely free.

          • mcmax3000

             I have this really bad habit that I’m just starting to shake after three years of playing The Show where I swing at absolutely everything so the chances of me getting even remotely close to 350,000 anytime soon are pretty slim.

            I think in my first few tries the best I did was about 30,000.

          • Keith.

            That’s about what I was scoring at first as well. Being able to lay off balls, and fouling pitches off to keep a good run alive, seem to be the key as the multiplier can get pretty jacked up. Makes for a fun challenge.

  • Marginwalker12

    I only care about the PS3 version of The Show. I loved it out the box, so no patch. So that gets a skip. UEFA, I played the game back in the Sega days when Brian Plank was an unstoppable force for Germany, and they didn’t even have Alexis on the U.S. 2K is in there last year, so if they don’t care neither do I. (One step closer to MVP!)

    So I have to go with EA charging absurd amounts for DLC for Tiger Woods.

  • September and the NHL series can’t come soon enough. Although, the NHL series does need to pick up their game somehow, they’ve been slacking as of late in the sense that NHL 10-12 have all been too similar.

  • EvreyNN

    for me its the show. ive loved the game the past couple years but its a major fail this time. hitting is so hard, online is terrible, and the patches have been a joke and they just ignore everyone upset about it.

    • No3456

      The patches have been terrible, no doubt, but I don’t patch the hitting. 
      This is the first time I have ever been able to avoid hitting .400+ 1-9 in my lineup – realism is a great thing.

  • SENZ

    UFC Undisputed 3. Tiger Woods 13 has a crap ton of problems, but the gameplay when played on tournament difficulty is actually very fun and quite realistic, so I’m okay with that. MLB 12 The Show right out of the box plays the most realistic baseball game ever made. Even with how they botched all the patches, the game STILL plays a super simulation of baseball.

    UFC 3, on the other hand, was basically garbage. The career mode was awful, the gameplay was still stiff. They had 2 full years to improve the game, and they BARELY did and actually took steps backwards in places. THQ and Yukes can die in a grease fire.

  • sroeland

    The thing that let me down more than anything else mentioned is that my country club in Tiger Woods 13 just up and vanished last weekend. And this has happened to others, as evidenced on various forums. So, for that, TW 13 gets my vote.

  • Lonnie

    since you have sxx listed in other i would pick that..i love the sxx games of the past, ssx 3 is still one of my favorite games of any kind ever and i was so pumped for this but it is so lacking from the past games,it just lacks in the “fun factor”..its not flashly or has the fireworks and the runs are short,,i have been very let down by it,so it gets my “reward”

  • Pirates1fan

    I went with 2K. I thought I would rent it, see how it is, and it is just pathetic compared to the show. Of course, I don’t think people expected to much from it, but I think it is the most dissapointing. The DLC on Tiger is insane, but overall plays well and is fun, not like you have to get extra courses and what not. And I haven’t any issues with the show, and it is by far my favorite game.

  • Pirates1fan

    I went with 2K. I thought I would rent it, see how it is, and it is just pathetic compared to the show. Of course, I don’t think people expected to much from it, but I think it is the most dissapointing. The DLC on Tiger is insane, but overall plays well and is fun, not like you have to get extra courses and what not. And I haven’t any issues with the show, and it is by far my favorite game.

  • they all failed

  • they all failed

  • 2012 has gotten off to a rocky start for fans of sports games.

    Tiger screwed up in multiple places, with a clunky UI, a new swing mechanic without ANY sort of tutorial, and consumer-hostile DLC pricing.

    FIFA Street and NFL Blitz fell somewhere between meh and blech for many. Considering the history of the Streetballer genre from EA, that’s not bad. The No Fun League neutered the excitement out of Blitz, which is kind of the point of Blitz, so you can’t blame the devs too much. FIFA Street gets points for being much better than I expected and for good sales numbers in Europe. But when I say it’s the best new sports game I’ve played this year, I’m talking shit about this year.

    MLB 12 introduced cross-play, but it’s broken, and both Vita and the PS3 title feel like warmed-over retreads of MLB 10. It makes sense, as they were making two games on basically one game’s budget, and lost a key designer to Tiburon, but still. I’ve never gotten so bored so quickly with The Show.

    The good news for the year ahead is much more promising, at least for me. I dig UEFA 2012’s DLC status, new game mode and extra presentation. Totally getting in to that when UEFA 12 actually kicks off. And the buzz I’m hearing around NCAA and Madden 13 is quite promising. Speaking of Tiburon, the NBA reboot also sounds good.

    And we might’ve finally seen the last of MLB 2K, so the future’s looking bright.

  • I’m not having any problems with MLB the Show 12, although I own both, suprisingly I only play the PS3 version.  I hardly even touched my Vita, yes homo.

    The other games, I could hardly care for because I didn’t get them.  But I did get UFC and sold it within a couple weeks.  I used to be big on MMA, but i’m slowly drifting away as a fan.  The game is just bland, repetitive, online gameplay is wack.  This game is just a mess.

  • …….

    MLB The Show 12 gets my vote……those failed patches are just too much for me to ignore

  • ARB

    My rtts froze on the show 12 spent money on my guy to level him up. Haven’t played it since. It’s been since the day of the 2nd patch.

  • Del4ncor1792

    i dont play any of these games but from reading this id pick the show but i would also go with ufc because ill play that one

  • No Madden 12 or NCAA 12 on this list?  Hrm, not good.

    • Probably because those games came out in 2011 and this is for games that came out in 2012

  • Skihawks

    TW 13 for me because of the DLC issue. I have no issues with DLC but when it impacts career mode if you dont purchase that is beyond weak.

    The game plays great but to pilfer money from consumers is not the way to go.

    • mcmax3000

      In Tiger Woods 13, not having the DLC doesn’t impact career mode. It did in 12 but not this year.

      If you don’t have the course that the next tournament is on in this year’s game, you have the option to change the course to one that you do have.