15 Dumbest Gaming Innovations


From heart rate sensors to a game that will break your phone, we count 15 of the dumbest gaming innovations of all time.

15 – Vitality Sensor,


  • The vitality sensor was revealed during E3 2009 as a method for measuring the player’s heartrate while playing, presumably to have games react to how excited or scared you got as you played the game.
  • Don’t get me wrong, this could have been cool in a horror game if it weren’t for one glaring problem, it requires you to abandon the nunchuck and your left hand, forcing you to use the Wii-mote in a very limited way.
  • Possibly because of this very issue the entire project was scrapped, to the point where it was never even shown off in combination with gameplay, and really did we need another peripheral for the Wii?

14 – Limited Lives in Console Games,


  • You might argue that lives add to the difficulty of a game, while also raising the stakes and I’m not even saying that there have been no good uses, Resident Evil being a good example of how to use a life system.
  • However, for the vast majority of cases it was just a game mechanic blindly copy-pasted from arcade games which required a life system in order for the cabinet to be profitable.
  • What do lives actually add to Super Mario Brothers? Unwanted backtracking, it’s not like the game is short, the developers even saw this as being a potentially unwanted feature so they added the ability to skip the ‘feature’, thus begging the question as to why they included it in the first place.

13 – Escort Missions,


  • Who was the bright guy that thought gaming needed more babysitting? I can’t even imagine any positive spins for escort missions apart from perhaps making a player overcome any nurturing instincts they have and make them hate a useless character.
  • I searched long and hard for an actually well implemented escort mission and the best I found were people showing examples where they barely noticed the escort.
  • Luckily most developers have finally come to their senses and tried their best to act like they were never a thing to begin with.

12 – GameCube’s Handle,


  • At what point did Nintendo think, ‘you know what’s really holding the 64 back? The fact that you can’t carry it via the use of an ugly looking strap poking from the side of the console.’?
  • I can see the theoretical attraction to being able to carry a console to your friend’s place, but the GameCube is already tiny and light enough that any eight-year-old could easily carry it in the first place.
  • At least they had enough sense to make sure it’s unlikely for the disc to come loose when carrying it by the handle.

11 – Virtual Boy,


  • You might wonder why the Virtual Boy isn’t higher on this list and let me explain: virtual reality is not an inherently bad idea, in fact it’s a really cool idea that has a lot of potential.
  • But when you’re restricted to one colour as well as causing many, if not all, users to get serious eye aches if you play it for more than 20 minutes.
  • To top it all off they included two D-pads for some reason and there’s no comfortable way to wear glasses and have the headset on at the same time.

10 – Tiger Electronics Wrist Games,


  • It’s easy to forget just how quickly technology becomes completely obsolete, but when you look at the Tiger wrist band you might think twice before buying an Apple Watch.
  • Basically all you need to do is imagine a Game and Watch, dumb down the gameplay, severely restrict the method of control and combine these factors with a watch and you have a Tiger wrist band.
  • It’s clearly marketed towards kids, but even still I can’t imagine any kid wearing one of these and not being beaten up by the schoolyard bully.

9 – Kiss Controller,


  • Are your make-out sessions becoming dull, do you and your partner really, really, really like bowling? Well this is the invention for you!
  • With the Kiss Controller you can get judged for how well you and your loved one mack in the way of a bowling game.
  • Not only that, you also get all of the pleasure of kissing a piece of plastic in addition to your partner so it feels you’re having a sneaky threesome with a bakelite love-bot.

8 – Friend Codes,


  • Yes I agree that children should have as many layers of security when they go online, but who thought it was a good idea to force the kiddy system onto the adults who happen to buy a Nintendo consoles.
  • I mean it’s pretty obvious Nintendo are aware that more people than just children are going to buy their products when they have titles like Wii Fit.
  • At the very least they should have made the codes 9 digits, I mean did they actually expect to need 2 orders of magnitude more than the population of the planet?


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