Top 20 Video Games That Ruin Friendships



Top 20 Video Games That Ruin Friendships

VOICE OVER: Callum Janes WRITTEN BY: Garrett Alden
A lot of games are great for making friendships stronger, but you won't find any of them here. For this list, we'll be going over the games whose gameplay, communities, and overall vibe may cause rifts between those who play them. Our countdown includes "GoldenEye 007" (1997), the "New Super Mario Bros." Series (2006-), the "Overcooked" Series (2016-), "Overwatch" (2016), and more!
A lot of games are great for making friendships stronger, but you won't find any of them here. For this list, we’ll be going over the games whose gameplay, communities, and overall vibe may cause rifts between those who play them. Our countdown includes "GoldenEye 007" (1997), the "New Super Mario Bros." Series (2006-), the "Overcooked" Series (2016-), "Overwatch" (2016), and more! If there’s a game you feel may cause you to drift apart from our channel because we didn’t include it, don’t stew in silence – share, and we’ll get through this together.

#20: “The Jackbox Party Pack” Series (2014-)

Party games are usually a recipe for a good time – or a bad one. “The Jackbox Party Pack” franchise is no exception. These games feature a variety of minigames, with several prompts for a group of players or else trivia to be answered. It’s a ton of fun and quite convenient to play, since you can even use your phones, “Jackbox” games can still lead to frustrations or disagreements between friends. Use of personal insults or jokes for the prompts, an unflattering drawing, or other low blows can easily lead to disagreements between players. So play nice folks!

#19: “Payday” Series (2011-)

This crime centered FPS series focuses on co-op play, specifically on executing armed robberies. Ideally, you and your friends will get in, get out, and get away with the cash. But if heist movies have taught us anything, it’s that nothing ever goes to plan! Heists in the movies often involve characters betraying one another or falling out over money. And while the monetary element isn’t really a factor, these games still offer plenty of opportunities for you and your friends to blow up at each other. Whether it’s police intervention or one of your friends shooting a hostage or one of you, the “Payday” games are a recipe for disaster.

#18: “Stick Fight: The Game” (2017)

Simplicity can often equal fun in a game. Such is the case with “Stick Fight: The Game.” Players play as stick figures dropped into various arenas and must use a variety of weapons to kill their opponents or knock them off the stage into the abyss. For as much silly fun as it is though, it can easily lead to aggravation. Sometimes weapons will drop on only one side, giving one player an unfair advantage. Or maybe the stage will do something crazy or unexpected that leads to a cheap death. While the matches don’t last long, repeated bad luck can leave you feeling angry and make you lash out at the other player.

#17: “Worms” Series (1995-)

In this 2D shooting game, players control, you guessed it, worms. But while they are slow-moving, inching across the various destructible stages, the invertebrates are also heavily armed. Using a ton of guns, your objective is to blow up all your opponents, by raining death from above and/or blowing up enough of your environment to land better hits on your foes. We know that carpet bombing your buddies sounds innocent enough, but it can actually cause some hard feelings, oddly enough. Add in the not always reliable physics of the various guns and you have a game series that will worm its way into ruining the odd friendship or two.

#16: “Marvel vs. Capcom” Series (1996-2017)

Fighting games in general tend to bring up a lot of hard feelings, particularly if there’s a lot of skill involved. Of the more technical fighting games, our pick for the most friendship destroying is the “Marvel vs. Capcom” series. Although the games are well-known for their huge rosters and competitive scene, they’re infamous for gigantic, game-breaking combos, cheap spam moves, and overpowered characters. If you get stuck on the receiving end of another player’s epic combo, there’s little you can do but fume about it, and that’s not healthy for your relationships. Not everyone likes getting “taken for a ride.”

#15: “Super Smash Bros.” Series (1999-)

Speaking of fighting games, “Super Smash Bros.” is another which can cause tensions between friends. Although far less serious than most other fighters, that can be part of the problem. Knocking your foes off the screen can vary between ridiculously easy to so hard you want to pull your hair out. And if you’ve got items on, then getting smashed with any number of whacky, random weapons is quite likely. And just because it’s more of a party game than most fighters doesn’t mean “Smash Bros.” is immune to ridiculous combos or cheap moves!

#14: “Rocket League” (2015)

Team sports like soccer are all about cooperation towards a common goal. That doesn’t change when you’re playing a video game version with rocket-powered cars! “Rocket League” is a wild game, where the difficult to control vehicles often score by accident as much as on purpose. Coordinating offense or defense with cars that zoom around the field is like herding cats – technically possible, but extremely unlikely. Naturally, it can cause some annoyance when you’re trying to score and your teammates are ignoring the game to see who can reach the goal the fastest, or whatever.

#13: “Overwatch” (2016)

Speaking of team games, “Overwatch” is a multiplayer FPS where players ostensibly work together to complete objectives, using a host of unique characters, each with their own special abilities and weapons. It’s a ton of fun, and incredibly addicting. However, whenever you get a bunch of gamers in a multiplayer environment, it can be almost impossible to get them to do anything besides “kill the other team.” Granted, this often dovetails with the objectives, but if you’re not standing in the zone or protecting the vehicle or whatever the actual goal is, your teammates may get salty. Or maybe “Play of the Game” goes to something lame, like Torbjorn building a turret. Again.

#12: “Cuphead” (2017)

For all that it looks like a beautiful throwback cartoon, “Cuphead” is a tough game. You’re put through a gauntlet of tough boss fights all of which will throw projectiles and their bodies at you, leading to repeated deaths as you learn their patterns. That alone is frustrating. However, playing it co-op with another player can add additional difficulties. Maybe your partner doesn’t revive you from death or parry the right thing. Maybe they die early and shoulder you with the burden of going it alone. Regardless of the specifics, in general, 2 player gameplay can make you wanna’ “wallop” your friends.

#11: “Fall Guys” (2020)

“Fall Guys” takes all the fun of goofy, over-the-top, obstacle course game shows and translates them to video game form. Unfortunately, the little beans you dress in silly costumes control like sandbags with limbs. Jumping and diving are a toss-up whether they’ll be successful, and they’re not exactly built for speed. Several of the games you play are team-based, and all the problems getting your bean to do what you want are compounded when you have to take multiple people into account. Plus, the hit detection on the grab ability isn’t fantastic, particularly in large crowds, so when your friend does hold you back, costing you your chance to move on, try to be forgiving.

#10: “Goldeneye 007” (1997)

“Goldeneye 007” was a staple of gaming parties during the late ‘90s and early 2000s. While its single player campaign was also remarkable, it was the multiplayer that drew gamers like moths to a flame. It was basically the biggest game for local multiplayer for several years. Still, every game has its downsides. Cheating is almost expected in “Goldeneye,” with screen watching being a simple matter given the split screen. Then there are overpowered guns and even characters! We’re looking at you Oddjob! Any player who engages in these behaviors or picks that tiny, bowler hat wearing jerk is bound to get ostracized from their friend group.

#9: “Portal 2” (2011)

A follow-up to the sci-fi puzzle platformer “Portal,” the sequel does everything bigger. Plus with more robots! It’s also designed with a 2-player co-op mode, in which you and a friend must work together to progress. However, while this is good in theory, in practice, it can lead to a lot of arguments over what to do. It also offers plenty of opportunities to troll the other player by letting them fall to their death or get shot by a turret. The cake may be a lie, but it’s the truth that “Portal 2” can get you and your friends at each other’s throats.

#8: Lego Games (1995-)

The Lego games are known for their silly humor and surprising faithfulness to their source material. However, when playing through them in co-op mode, they have their share of irritants. Older games have a wonderful feature where you’ll get stuck if you try to go too far from each other, which has caused plenty of arguments. Meanwhile, newer games always have split screen mode in co-op, as well as making it easier for players to hit each other accidentally. Legos are the ultimate toy for kids and kids at heart, but instead of building up friendships, these games sometimes tear them down.

#7: “New Super Mario Bros.” Series (2006-)

Using two players in “Super Mario” games has been part of its appeal since the series’ early days. But it wasn’t until the “New Super Mario Bros.” games that multiple players got to play on the same level at the same time. This is fun…theoretically. In actuality, trying to platform through these, admittedly pretty easy, levels with 2 to 4 players at once can be a nightmare! Players can bump into each other, jump off one another’s heads, or throw each other, which gets incredibly hectic and doesn’t make for a productive gaming environment. So many friendships lost…because that one person bubbled while everyone else was bubbled.

#6: “Gang Beasts” (2017)

This party game has up to 4 players controlling borderline ragdoll-like characters with the goal of tossing the other players off the screen or into hazards to kill them. “Gang Beasts” is pretty much designed to be a chaotic mess of a game, and the environment, difficult to use controls, and floppy characters ensure that someone’s going to get tossed out earlier than everyone else. Whether you’re stuck waiting for everyone else to finish the match, or someone drags you down with them, “Gang Beasts” has no shortage of opportunities for players to get salty at one another.

#5: “League of Legends” (2009)

Speaking of salt, “League of Legends” has one of the most toxic gaming communities ever seen. It may be one of the most popular esports out there, but its players are less than sporting. Along with the usual hateful jibes you’ll see between strangers, “League” is a great way to alienate your friends. Getting stuck in a match you can’t quit is a great way to stir up resentment between people, regardless of how close they are. Everyone on a team is bound to have different ideas on what having a good time feels like, and how long that is. For those who haven’t played, imagine you’re stuck at an office birthday party – for 5 different people at the same time.

#4: “Among Us” (2018)

“Among Us” blew up during the Covid-19 pandemic, because it’s essentially a remote version of popular party games like “Mafia” or “Secret Hitler.” It brought people closer together during a time when quarantine kept us apart, and even led to new friendships. However, it’s also a game in which some of the players are tasked with killing their fellow players, while lying about it during meetings. This can have people questioning whether their friends are trustworthy in real life if they’re able to lie to them so easily and so convincingly in the game. Sociopathy is actually an advantage here!

#3: “Overcooked!” Series (2016-)

Anyone who has ever worked in a restaurant will tell you that behind the polite veneer, the place is absolute chaos! And in that sense, the “Overcooked!” games are pretty accurate. Up to 4 players are tasked with preparing food to order with a ticking clock. Sure, there’s no danger of losing your job for real, but the gradual descent into madness as each player tries to do every single part of the cooking process means that everyone is going to get angry about everyone else getting in their way. Gordon Ramsey ain’t got nothing on these “kitchen nightmares!”

#2: “Mario Kart” Series (1992-)

“Mario Kart” games are fun. We’re not saying they’re not. They’re racing games with “Mario” characters and a ton of wacky power-ups. But while those power-ups can bring joy for some, they invoke despair in others. It just depends on the race. The number of raised words between friends over Koopa shells stopping people dead in their tracks or knocking them off a stage could fill not just a book, but an entire library! Success can be snatched away just like that in “Mario Kart,” and when a friend is responsible, that cuts deep.

#1: “Mario Party” Series (1998-)

These games have ruined so many friendships, we’re sure that some people were tempted to sue Nintendo for false advertising because they found the “party” part of their title woefully inaccurate. “Mario Party” games are a good time, usually, but they offer up far too many ways to screw over the other players. Stealing coins and stars from others is downright encouraged. Minigames can range from actually fun to surprisingly cutthroat. Add in the game boards’ random effects, Bowser taking everything you have, or other players lucking out on hidden blocks or star placement, and you’ve got a game series that’s less a collection of parties and more of a gauntlet for friendships you’re lucky to emerge from intact.