The 10 Most Controversial Video Games Of All Time

Over the years there have been a number of controversial video games released, often bringing about the age old discussion about whether or not video games are detrimental for society.

Sometimes, the controversy is overplayed. Other times, as you will see in this list, the outrage is completely justified. Read on to find out about 10 of the most controversial video games of all time. 

10. Grand Theft Auto

Grand Theft Auto V Franklin
Grand Theft Auto V Franklin

Rockstar is no stranger to controversy, as evidenced by their frequent appearance in this list, and perhaps their most famous game is also one of their most contentious. 

The Grand Theft Auto series contains sex, drugs, violence, murder, and a whole load of controversial themese that often make it a focal point in arguments about whether video games are detrimental to society. Most famously, being attacked by political commentator and conspiracy theorist Glenn Beck, who claimed that children were becoming desensitized as a result of the game. 

Another big controversy relates to the Hot Coffee mod in San Andreas, which allowed players to take part in mini-games that involved explicit sexual content. This caused huge uproar at the time and cemented the Grand Theft Auto series as some of the most controversial games of all time.  

9. Bully

Bully - Jimmy Hopkins
Bully – Jimmy Hopkins

Another Rockstar entry to the list comes in the form of Bully. Many believed that this 2006 video game glorified bullying, with some suggesting that these types of games lead to incidents such as the Columbine High School massacre. 

The game was initially banned in Brazil and received the highest possible classification elsewhere. Despite this, Bully was a commercial success and many praised the gameplay mechanics and creativity. There have even been rumours about a Bully 2 in the making

8. The Guy Game

The Guy Game Trivia Quiz
The Guy Game Trivia Quiz

The Guy Game presents another one of those “what were they thinking?” moments that makes you question everything you love about the video game industry. 

Released in 2004, the aim of The Guy Game is to get bikini-clad women to expose their breasts by answering trivia questions correctly. It transpired that one of the young women used during the promotion was underage at the time, leading to a lawsuit and the subsequent withdrawal of the game from circulation. 

7. Left Behind: Eternal Forces

Left Behind Eternal Forces Gameplay
Left Behind Eternal Forces Gameplay

Left Behind: Eternal Forces is a Christian strategy game that pits the player (controlling the Tribulation Force) against the “Antichrist” world government. Based on the best selling Christian novels written by LaHaye and Jenkins, the game was accused of promoting religious hostility and disharmony, and divided audiences worldwide. 

Despite Left Behind being one of the most controversial video games of recent times, many people praised the real-time gameplay mechanics and it gained a decent following as a result. 

6. Carmageddon

Carmageddon Gameplay
Carmageddon Gameplay

Released in 1997, Carmageddon is a driving game that rewards players for killing pedestrians and other race cars. Unsurprisingly, the game was banned in many countries, and human pedestrians were changed for zombies and robots elsewhere. 

Despite the controversy, the game was fairly well received, and numerous sequels and reboots have been developed. 

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