5 Bad NES Games

Its a true fact: the NES is one of the raddest video game systems of all time. However, as is the case for all things, with radness comes sadness because unfortunately there were a lot of bad games for the NES. Here are 5.

Just The Facts

  1. Without question, the absolute worst games for the system were the unlicensed ones released by "companies" like Color Dreams and Active Enterprises.
  2. For that reason, I'm going to avoid unlicensed games. Me versus Captain Comic is like Kimbo Slice versus McLovin.
  3. The worst NES game of all time is often disputed. Depending on who you ask, the worst NES game ever tends to either be "who gives a flying fuck?" or "whats a ness?"

Godawful NES games

From its time of release, the NES home game system gained incredible popularity and success, which attracted parasites hoping to get in on the devleoping 8-bit video game market. In addition to the myriad of addictive, innovative, and incredibly fun games that emerged during the original Nintendo Entertainment System's run, many many many bad games managed to sneak their way into the NES's game library. As you can imagine, its impossible to catalog all of the terrible and impossibly crappy hellspawn the NES delivered unto the world. As a reasonable alternative, I've decided to take it upon myself to complete the burdensome task of hand picking 5 awful games, painstakingly playing the pieces of shit, and then relaying my experiences here for your enjoyment.

Determining which games I was going to shit on was no easy task. After many sleepless nights spent thinking, I finally mustered the courage to power up the NES and after some seriously radical gaming sessions I've settled on 5 games that raised my blood pressure to unsafe levels and caused my sanity to leak from my ears. In no particular order, here are 5 bad NES games.

Yo! Noid (1990)

Why is Yo! Noid a bad game?

Good lord, this game is awful, that's why. To fully illustrate how lame it is, I'll simply start by saying its one of those corporate video game tie-ins that you immediately know will suck upon first sight of the title screen. In this game's defense though, it is no Yaris because I found myself capable of actually playing more than 5 seconds of it without developing a brain tumor.


Yo! Noid actually began its life a Japanese Capcom game called Kamen no Ninja Hanamaru. Unfortunately for us, the game got caught in the corporate crossfire and ended up degenerating into a commercial for Domino's Pizza before its release here in the states. The game's story is about the Noid and uh dropping out of high school and fighting his way towards a degree... and into some Domino's Pizza eating contest minigames...or something... truth be told I don't actually know the plot and I really don't give a shit. The controls aren't the worst but the levels lend themselves to some shitty situations that will inevitably lead to some harsh words and/or controller throwing. You find yourself having to control that little yo-yo swinging, red-skinned shithead across increasingly difficult environments where you fight retarded enemies that rush you over and over and over again for no discernable reason as you try to collect high school diplomas or magical Dominos Pizza scrolls or some shit. The game is a platformer with lots of annoying jumps and dumbass enemies there to prevent the Noid from making said jumps (and to prevent you from enjoying this shit). Which reminds me, the game's enemies are definitely worth mentioning. Now I know video games don't have to make sense to be good, but man, who knew the Noid had made so many damn enemies. Everything in this game hates you and the designers intended to make it abundantly clear that the Noid is not welcome anywhere in this cold, cold world. Hockey players, fish, plumbers, frogs, bees, propeller driven flying football players, absolutely everyone in the horrible Yo! Noid universe is looking to get a piece of the Noid and his bad tasting pizza. Trust me, it sucks ass. Oh and each level ends with some weird pizza eating competition card game that is guaranteed to bore you to death and make you wish more than anything in the world that you were playing something else.


Maybe my controller is defective or I'm suffering from lead poisoning or something, but god dammit, I can't beat this game! I've been playing this turd for about 15 years and to this day I just can't do it. Fuck it. If you like fun and not wasting your precious time on this earth, avoid the god damn Noid at all costs.

Skate or Die (1987)

Why is Skate or Die a bad game?

There are so many things wrong with this game it causes my insides to hurt when I play it. Many people like this game for its nostalgia which leaves me puzzled because when I played this game as a kid I hated it. And it might be 2010 but I still can't believe this game got a sequel.

I wholeheartedly agree.

Skate or die. If your options are strictly limited to just those 2 things, the easy choice in this case is death. What kills the game for me is that the controls in Skate or Die are unholy. When I think of the NES and the word skateboarding I picture games like Adventure Island and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 3, where controlling your trajectory on the skateboard isn't shitty. Now Skate or Die took this crazy idea of controlling a character on a skateboard and set out to destroy any semblance of actual control, fun, and coherence that could have existed between the d-pad and the a/b buttons. Controlling your skater is like attempting to navigate the internet and operate your computer using only the keyboard - super duper shitty if not completely impossible. The game features 5 events and out of my hatred for this game I'm not going to even name them... but as you can probably imagine they all fucking suck. The difficulty level of each of the stages is multiplied many times by the lack of any good way to control your movements. I know you can't see me but just so you know I am hanging and shaking my head as I am typing this. I can't emphasize how bad this game is and after playing it for a little while and briefly discussing it I really feel like I need a shower.

Racing towards disappointment.

The list of reasons not to play Skate or Die are too many to list so I'll leave it at this: don't play this game unless you are brave enough to suffer the inevitable side effects that include but are not limited to: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, increased frequency of suicidal thoughts or actions, broken Skate or Die NES cartridges, and a significantly reduced will to live. Professionals suggest that you limit your exposure time to Skate or Die to no more than one (1) hour of gameplay per decade. If you start feeling an extreme sadness upon starting up your Nintendo with this game in it or experience an urge to continue playing Skate or Die after thirty (30) seconds of gameplay, immediately consult your doctor, physician, or exorcist.

I've never beaten it.

Jaws (1989)

Why is Jaws a bad game?

Because Jaws is sloppily made, repetitive, and just a complete turd. I don't know if I can effectively turn my hatred for this game into words.

If you like boring games that are boring, you should seriously consider playing Jaws after you finish beating Wall Street Kid. The game boils down to you, some douche, going around a map in a boat and randomly hitting shit, which forces you to dive at that spot in search of things that will become clear after you finish the next few sentences. These spots I mentioned are a single screen environment where a bunch of marine life swims menacingly towards you. You shoot the [jellyfish/shark/stingray] with your 8-bit harpoon and then hurry to collect the [crabs/starfish/sea shells] that randomly fall from their corpses sometimes, you know, just like in the movie. Then, sometimes, you'll get to face off against Jaws for a little bit allowing you to drain his health bar insignificantly before he swims away. Rinse, lather, get really bored, and repeat.

Oh, but sometimes you'll kill a shark and be rewarded with this sweet minigame, based on the famous scene from Jaws 4: Citizens on Patrol. Basically it kicks ass and consists of you slaughtering a bunch of jellyfish from inside a plane by dropping bombs on them and lettin' those helpless cnidarian mother fuckers know who's boss.


If you are unlike me, and can stomach more than 3 or 4 minutes of this game, you can gain powerups later in the game that help you find Jaws, for whatever reason you would want to do that. Anyways, the game ends when you encounter Jaws like a million times and manage to completely deplete his power. There's more to the game but trust me like you have never trusted anyone before when I tell you it's not worth looking into. Trust me. Even the YouTubes told me the ending sucks. I've never beat it. That's all there is to say about this sad game. Next.

Monster Party (1989)

Why is Monster Party a bad game?

This game certainly isn't one of the worst games ever but its still bad for a few reasons. Namely, the game is weirder than A Boy and His Blob, stranger than a Japanese tv commercial featuring the kindergarten cop, completely bizarre as shit, and not at all worth playing if you have any other Nintendo game that isn't Monster Party. Seriously, Monster Party is so unapologetically bizarre that I can't help but think that this game is the final product of a horrifyingly insane and irreversibly brain damaging acid/spraypaint/gasoline trip. Don't believe me? See for yourself.

tell me about it.

The game stars a kid in a green jumpsuit who has to fight a never ending army of Elvis look-a-likes and weird monsters while running around a pixilated representation of a gas huffer's nightmare. As fun as that might sound to the many mentally unstable readers here at Cracked, the end result really is an NES cartridge that is molecularly indistinguishable from crusty old white dog turds. The controls are kind of rough which doesn't help with the fact that the game is nothing more than a shit maze full of shitty shit. It really is. And for a game that came to be so late in the NES's life, there is no acceptable explanation for this game's lack of quality and over abundance of enemies derived from weeks of eating peyote buttons for breakfast. I am at a loss of words when it comes to properly describing the unsettling qualities of Monster Party and all the dislikable things in this game. Now, I'm being kind of heavy handed towards Monster Party because in reality it isn't the worst game on the NES but I'm a prick and I just never been able to enjoy it. I guess I like it when you transform into the dragon or whatever but other than that, the story is dumb and not worth mentioning at all, the music sucks, the layouts make me unhappy, the dialogue is odd, and for these reasons and more I can confidently say that this party of monsters is the worst I have ever seen.

Yeah. Those legs sticking out of the ground is one of your enemies. The cactus thing's face says it all.

Now this is going to sound strange coming from me but bear with me.

This is the one and only time I'll ever say this about a game on this list ... contrary to what I told you earlier, you should really give Monster Party a try sometime just to see what I'm talking about (and also so I won't feel so weird about being the only person to play this game in the last 18 years). Just make sure to cash your salvia stash right before hitting the power button on the Nintendo in order to better ease yourself into the batshit insane atmosphere of this crazy game.

Never beaten it.

Can't argue with that.

Silver Surfer (1990)

Silver fucking Surfer. This. game. is. a. nightmare.

Why is Silver Surfer a bad game?

Where to begin? Besides the awesome music every last thing about this game is complete garbage. To start off the shit list, you will never beat this game. YOU WILL NEVER, EVER BEAT SILVER SURFER. The game is as hard as Arcadia Systems could possibly make it and don't let the game's title fool you, that silver sack of diarrhea is the worst surfer in the entire universe. Right when you enter a level it becomes painfully clear that this guy has never even touched a surfboard before in his shiny, silvery life. As soon as anything even slightly grazes you or your dumb surfboard, you're done. Avoiding incoming enemy fire and not touching one of the game's many stupid annoying fucking butthole enemies is a full time job. It becomes so hectic at times you wonder why you're even trying to succeed in this impossibly one-sided shitbag of a game. Knowing exactly what constitutes as a solid surface in the game requires so many level attempts its inhumane. If you're thinking about playing this game I can save you a few precious minutes of your time now by telling you that it just isn't worth it.

Here is the Silver Surfer pretending to be you while playing Silver Suffer[sic] on NES

There are five levels in the game. Just five. And if you can manage to scrape your way through a single one of them, congratulations, you possess some NES skills. If you beat two levels chances are you are one of those MLG fat kids I've heard so much about on the internetz. If you complete 3 levels of this game you deserve a medal or a wife or a million dumplings or whatever your culture highly values because you are the shit. If you can do more than that before game-overing, you do not exist because this game is too hard. Every level is littered with things that will knock your clumsy ass off the surfboard and both the sideways and overhead views featured in the game have been scientifically proven to be 100% impossible to like. Silver Surfer is fucking ridiculous and it is insulting that the game demands a level of patience and perseverence that aren't humanly possible. I hate it.

If you are disturbed enough to try the game out and ignore everything I just told you, you'll see. Or you could just watch the Angry Video Game Nerd review of the game that sums up my opinion of this game perfectly.

I have owned this game for years and have never beaten it. Never will. Playing this game and then thinking about this game and then writing about this game has got me in a terrible mood. I'm going to down a whole container of sleeping pills and see where that takes me. Ugh.

Nothing funny here. Fuck Silver Surfer.