Oh Godzilla. I have a soft spot for the big beefy-thighed lizard, so over the years I’ve played a lot of Godzilla games, and most of them have been bad. Like, really bad. Even Superman has probably had, on average, better games than the King of Kaiju.
By all accounts the new Godzilla movie is pretty good — good enough that you may be tempted to scrounge up some Godzilla gaming fun. Well, unless you immediately want to sully your good Gojira vibes, you should absolutely avoid these five games (ranked from bad to worst)…
5) Godzilla (1990)
I’ll give this Gameboy version of Godzilla points for being adorable, but when you pick up a Godzilla game you expect wanton destruction — not a gentle puzzle-platformer. As far as cutesy puzzle-platformers go, it’s okay, but who wants to play a Godzilla game where Godzilla can’t jump, breathe fire or do anything except throw a feeble punch?
4) Super Godzilla (1994)
Super Godzilla for the SNES was fairly impressive graphically, but the gameplay couldn’t have been duller. For whatever reason a lot of Godzilla games try to foist some kind of strategic gameplay off on the big green guy. Most of this game is spent staring at a map screen as Godzilla very…slowly…trudges…around. Once you finally do encounter another monster, the battle system is this sort of rhythm-based RPG amalgamation that I never fully understood.
3) Godzilla 2: War of the Monsters (1992)
Speaking of foisting strategic gameplay off on Godzilla, War of the Monsters, the second Godzilla game on the NES, was a full-fledged strategy game. Instead of controlling Godzilla you’re in charge of the military as they try to stem the tide of Godzilla’s destruction. In theory a well-designed strategy game where you have to outwit rampaging kaiju actually sounds like a lot of fun, but this game was shallow, arbitrary and impossible to understand. I just want to smash buildings and punch King Ghidorah in the face! Is that too much to ask?!
2) Godzilla Unleashed (2008)
Hey, finally, a game where Godzilla gets to fight things! Godzilla Unleashed got the spirit right, but it was hopelessly dated and cheap looking when it was released on the Wii in the late 2000s. It was also a sequel to perhaps the only good Godzilla game ever made (we’ll get to that in a bit) and was a crushing letdown in comparison.