There are some sports that don’t transition well into video games. Fishing, for example, is a nice relaxing pastime when enjoyed on the banks of a river with a cool beer, but make a computer game of it and you may find yourself having an existential crisis.
Ice Hockey and skiing are others which, try as they might, game developers never seem to capture the essence of. Unfortunately for NBA fans, basketball also seems to fall into this category. Here are some of the worst basketball video games ever made.
This game is what happens when a player’s agent sees a shiny check land on their desk and just cashes it without a second glance. Before Shaq knew it, he was the face of this ill-judged game, which has nothing to do with basketball and everything to do with being a Street Fighter rip-off from hell.
Bill Laimbeer’s Combat Basketball
Here’s another game that thought basketball had more to do with street brawls than athletic prowess, Combat Basketball was a catastrophically bad game, which must make the NBA player-turned-WNBA coach of the year suffer restless nights even now. His ex-team the Pistons are huge NBA betting outsiders to make a run at the championship this year, but not even they could be as bad as Bill’s video game.
Michael Jordan: Chaos in the Windy City
You would think it tough to go wrong when you’ve got the rights to use Michael Jordan’s name. Just keep things simple and of middling quality and you’re sure to still sell a bucket load of copies.
Unfortunately, the people who made Windy City had their brains removed and replaced with potatoes during development, coming up with a game in which b-ball’s GOAT goes round beating on bad guys with nothing more than his trusty basketball. You think it sounds bad? It’s worse than you could ever imagine.
NBA Elite 11
NBA Elite 11 was so woeful that it hindered EA from making another basketball game for years, perhaps fearful that developers would be haunted by the ghosts of Elite 11, a game riddled with so many glitches it defied belief.
Of course, over time some fans of retro games look back with fondness on these wacky outcasts of the gaming world, but if you’d spent a few hours’ worth of wages on one back in the day, the pain must still linger.