The Quiet Man
The Quiet Man is a 2018 action-adventure beat 'em up game developed by Human Head Studios, produced and published by Square Enix with little to no hype or advertising building up to the release of the game. The game is powered by Unreal Engine 4 and contains FMV cutscenes.
Why It Sucks
- The FMV cutscenes go on for way too long without properly explaining the story.
- Gameplay is nearly non-existent and consists of nothing but button-mashing to attack enemies.
- You'll receive on average about 4 minutes of punching and kicking followed by 10 minutes of FMV cutscenes.
- You can't pause by pressing a button like in every other video game. Instead, you must interact with an awkwardly-placed TV screen that is eternally showing the pause screen in order to pause the game.
- Since the game had a patch which re-established the sound, you only then realize that the story is godawful.
- The plot is that Dane (the protagonist) was abused as a child by his father, Robert, after his mother, Lorraine, is shot and killed by a gangbanger named Issac. As an adult, he meets a singer named Lala who looks almost identical to his mother, but despite having feelings for Lala, she's in a relationship with his best friend, Tay. So, Robert and Lala form a plan to goad Dane into killing Issac. But as it turns out, the one who killed Lorraine was Tay and the only way Dane can beat Tay is by becoming his alter ego: The Quiet Man. WHAT?!
- Completely no subtitles that would allow real-life deaf people to understand what the characters are saying.
- Subtitles and full audio were eventually added via an update.
- Originally with the near non-existence of hearable voices, it is impossible to know what the characters are saying unless you're an expert lip reader.
- It is impossible to know what Dane is thinking because the game never tells you in any way.
- Ugly graphics that make it look like a very cheap game.
- Dane's expression rarely changes throughout the game, making him a creepy and unlikable deaf protagonist.
- The game never properly tells how the singer that Dane must rescue is related to him and how he knows her.
- To make matters worse, the singer never ages at all as she has the same looks in the present day and in the cutscenes, making it impossible to know if she is Dane's relative or a family friend of his.
- The main story's puzzle and navigation are terrible as there are completely no waypoints to lead you to the next destination and the only hint to solving a puzzle is rapidly-beating heartbeats whenever you approach the puzzle's answer.
- Poor camera angles that make it difficult to see where you are punching and where the enemies are
- In many fights, cutscenes can be overlaid on the screen, making it very distracting.
- There's a level where all you do is walk down a street and that's it.
- The game shows flashbacks of Dane's dead mother non-stop.
- The acting is weak mostly due to poor direction.
- Artificial Difficulty: Mainly because of how many enemies attack you and how little health Dane has.
- The gameplay (as a whole) is a beat 'em up with zero variety. You enter a room, fight people, watch a cutscene, enter a room, and fight people over and over and over.
- The story is insultingly pretentious, as it constantly shoves obvious "symbolism" down the player and never does anything with it while acting "deep and serious" without any real effort.
The Only Redeeming Quality
- The soundtrack is decent.
The Quiet Man received "generally unfavorable reviews" according to review aggregator Metacritic. It was Metacritic's Official Worst Game of 2018, meaning it was the lowest-scoring of 2018. PC Gamer described the game as a "spectacular disaster" and added "there are lots of bad games, but for a game that was announced at E3 and made by a major publisher and studio to be this catastrophic is something." Destructoid gave it a 4 out of 10, stating that the game failed to deliver on its advertisement of "high-production live action, realistic CG and pulse-pounding action gameplay", and though it had some high points, "they soon [gave] way to glaring faults."
Jim Sterling called the game "a miserable and exhausting time", saying that the game's story was impossible to understand with the lack of dialogue, further explaining that the then-upcoming Answered update and its New Game Plus with audible dialogue would not adequately fix the problem, as players are still forced to play without dialogue the first time. He also found the combat more difficult than necessary due to a poor camera and distracting cutscenes being overlaid during combat sequences. He later placed The Quiet Man at the top of his worst games of 2018 list, calling it "an abject, stupid failure" in both gameplay and story, further lambasting the story by opining that the mere existence of the Answered update proved its execution to be fundamentally flawed and that, in its incomprehensibility, it inadvertently portrayed deaf people as incapable of understanding the world around them.
DX featured it on his "Worst Games of the Decade" video stating his disbelief that someone made a game with no sound, criticized the producer who made a game that doesn't reflect his ideology, and declared it not only the worst game of the decade, but one of the worst games of all time along with the likes of Bubsy 3D.