When talking about the worst video games in history, we all think of different names: ‘E.T’ for Atari, ‘Superman 64’, ‘Doctor Jeckyll and Mister Hyde’ for NES… But surely you don’t think of a title so unknown that it didn’t even appear in the United States and was described as “the 11-S of video games”. It was based on a successful franchise, it was an FPS at its peak, nothing could go wrong… And yet, it did so disastrously. This is the terrible story of ‘Hollywood Super Detective’ for PS2.
It’s 2006. It’s been twelve years since the last installment of ‘Hollywood Super Detective’ and nobody seems to be very interested in reviving it, although since the premiere of the third part there was talk that, indeed, they were going to make the fourth (and you know what happened: nothing). The franchise is absolutely dead and all the juice that could have been squeezed out of it was already squeezed out in the 90s. Well, or so everyone thought except Atomic Planet Entertainment, a British developer that in 2002 had released a Mike Tyson game and was dedicated to licenses like ‘Miami Vice’ or ‘Jackie Chan Adventures’.
‘Hollywood Super Detective’ was just another license. It was enough to more or less copy another game, throw in some voices and fun music and go with it, right? Well… The game had no voices. No facial movements. No music. Not even the infiltration didn’t make sense because you ended up being discovered without ever knowing why. To top it off, Axel Foley didn’t even look like Eddie Murphy: he was a white, bald man. Pure fidelity.
The game had all the bugs you can imagine: no matter how much they shot at you, the bad guys couldn’t hit you if you were crouching, but if you were standing they came from everywhere, the missions made no sense and were choreographed with a cinematic… In total, six small missions, six different weapons and an absolutely atrocious design made it a game that not even those brave enough in the style of Angry Video Game Nerd have dared to play it.
It gets even worse: it’s one of the few PS2 games that was only released in Europe, it never touched other territories… and it didn’t even appear on DVD. That’s right: since they were cheaper, they decided it was a better idea to release it directly on a simple CD. You may ever wonder how is it possible that this franchise is absolutely dead no matter how much they insist that this time it’s the good one and there will be a tetralogy: remember this game. Sometimes, the worst sound a cultural product can make is that of absolute indifference.