You guys all know what a fluffer is right? No? Well, sit down, because this is gonna blow your mind (no pun intended).

You see during a porn shoot sometimes the actors need to take a little break to readjust, discuss the scene with the director, give the actress’s hoo-hah a breather, etc. You may be asking yourself “how does the male porn star maintain his erection through all these breaks”? Excellent question.

There is a designated “fluffer” on every set who’s sole purpose is to keep the male performer(s) hard as a rock by blowing them between takes. Isn’t that the most insane job in the world?

Here’s the thing: I’m not one of those guys that thinks everything that’s popular sucks and the only good games are indies and hidden gems. But I have a very high standard for video games; higher than your average joe. And honestly, I think I have a pretty good eye for what is objectively good or bad in the industry.

Well, these games are the “fluffers” of 2019; they get the job done, they may even look like the real deal, but at the end of the day they kinda blow compared to expectations.

Here are the nominees for this year’s “Fluffiest Fluffer” award:

Borderlands 3

I was so fucking hyped up for this game. I predicted it would be the 2019 Game of the Year, I pre-ordered it (which I rarely do), and I stayed up until 3am on launch day playing it. But man, was I wrong.

It’s still an ok game and worth the $60 I paid for it, but it is nowhere near the quality I expected.

The new villains above just suck. They’re annoying, they’re not funny, and they make me miss Handsome Jack even more than I already do.

The writing as a whole is pretty “meh” as well, with stale jokes and missions that made we wish I could just mute any character that talked.

Is Borderlands 3 fun? Yes, of course. I still enjoy the classic looter-shooter gameplay and I like some of the new character abilities, but I expected so much more from this title.

Borderlands 2 raised the bar for the franchise by adding an awesome story with awesome characters on top of their already awesome gameplay, and Borderlands 3 failed to live up to that awesome standard.


Why was this game nominated for so many awards? I mean I like it, but it wasn’t THAT good.

I enjoyed how I felt like a Sith Lord while I floated around and threw shit across the map. That was a fucking blast.

Control is also one of the most visually appealing games I’ve ever seen (if your console can handle it). The lighting, the colors, the combat abilities; everything looks incredible.

So why is this a “fluffer”? Well first, the story is a giant clusterfuck. I know that Remedy is known for it’s “out there” narratives, but this one is so fucking confusing from start to finish.

Also, while the game looks great as a whole, most of the characters do not. You can tell they spent a ton of time on the main characters, but others look like they were pulled from Fallout 3. And the facial animations are a step back from the great motion-capture in Quantum Break.

Control does a lot of really awesome things, but for me, this game’s inconsistencies weigh it down from being one of the best games this year.

Death Stranding

There hasn’t been a more polarising game in the entire history of video games. You either love this game and herald it as one of the best of all time or hate it and consider it the biggest disappointment of all time.

Death Stranding is one of the most unique games I’ve ever played, but it’s also still plagued by some of the same issues from Kojima’s other work.

While the story is slightly easier to understand than say a Metal Gear Solid title, it’s still confusing as hell. I mean I completely understand that Kojima had to do a ton of world-building and explanation, but some of the concepts in this world are so far out there that I really struggled to stay engaged.

And bad writing doesn’t help either. The lines that some of these characters say are completely moronic. I mean what the fuck were you thinking with this “Princess Beach” scene Kojima? You thought that was good?

Finally, while I understand the need for the first 10 hours of “broken gameplay” to make the player appreciate the online aspect of this game, it’s a hell of a 10 hours. I think I would have gotten the message in the first 5 hours.

There’s no doubt that Death Stranding is one of the better games this year, but it’s not a GOAT like it’s being heralded.

Gears 5

To all the people out there heralding Gears 5 as the best game in the series, I say this to you: eat a giant dick.

I get the draw. I really do. Gears of War is a very unique game. But this game is nothing more than an Xbox 360 game with a fresh coat of paint.

Is it visually stunning? Absolutely. It’s one of the best looking games this console generation. But that’s about all that The Coalition has done well with this franchise since they took over.

I don’t care about these open-world areas or the stupid fucking overpowered robot. People keep pointing them out as these monumental changes when to me they felt copy-and-pasted. All the devs did was tip their toes in the water of innovation instead of diving in headfirst.

The story is bland as hell. “We have a problem so go get the Hammer of Dawn. Oh and Kait, you’re a descendant of the Locust Queen so try not to become evil.” There’s the entire story in a nutshell.

Even the climactic scene where *spoiler* you have to choose between killing JD or Del sucks. As someone who’s played Gears 4 and 5, I can honestly say neither character was developed enough for me to give a shit about who dies. Now had this been Gears 3 and I had to pick between Dom, Baird, or Cole? I would have struggled greatly with that decision.

And that’s what this game lacks. There’s no spark like that original trilogy, no characters that stand out in your mind, and no changes that actually matter in both the campaign and multiplayer. Oh, and the multiplayer servers were so bad on launch it crashed the entire Xbox Live service for like 8 hours on a Friday night. But it has an 84 on Metacritic? Are you fucking kidding me?

Kingdom Hearts 3

I’ll admit that I’d never played a Kingdom Hearts game fully until KH3, but damn did I regret it. Outside of the Disney appeal, there is nothing about this game I enjoyed.

There’s so much shit in this game. Collectibles, a crafting system, a space flight simulator, main quests, side quests; the game is like a giant mashup of every RPG element except none of them are done well.

It’s like someone took their favorite ingredients, threw them all in a pot, and expected it to make a wonderful stew. Instead, it was a giant pile of slop.

Then there’s the combat, which can only be described as mindless button-mashing. For general combat, this wasn’t too bad but once you get to a boss fight, oh boy.

The boss fights in this game are brutal on the highest difficulty for absolutely no reason, especially the final battle against Xehanort. I probably died to him for 3 hours straight, and each death was because of some stupid bullshit like undodgeable attacks or bad mechanics.

Finally, the story. No one understands it and if you say you do, you’re a goddamn liar. I watched a 30-minute explanation of the entire Kingdom Hearts universe and it has to be the worst fucking story I’ve seen in any form of media. Why would you write this confusing bullshit for a game with Disney characters?

Yet, somehow this game is considered one of the best RPGs of the year. It absolutely fucking isn’t.

Metro Exodus

I’ll admit that I’ve never really been a Metro fan, so I’ll admit that it has a bit of an effect on my opinion toward this game. But even without that subjectivity, there’s something specific that really disappointed me.

I’ve seen gameplay of Metro Exodus on gaming PC’s and the Xbox One X/PS4 Pro and it looks absolutely beautiful. But I’m playing on an OG Xbox, and the port they made for those consoles doesn’t look nearly as breathtaking. In fact, it looks pretty dated.

This is the game that made me start to wonder if developers were making the jump to next-gen too soon and leaving gamers on the older consoles behind. I know that the OG Xbox is capable of handling beautiful graphics like in Gears 5 or The Witcher 3, so why cut back on that port?

Also, the story is a pretty slow burn. It took a few hours to actually feel engaged with the world and gameplay, and even then I didn’t really enjoy how someone is constantly talking in your ear while you try to explore the post-apocalyptic world.

But even with these complaints, I do think this is the best game on this list. I just don’t think it deserved the 86 rating it got when it came out (it’s now leveled off to around an 82, which is far more accurate).

And the winner for this year’s Fluffiest Fluffer award goes to…















Kingdom Hearts 3

Like I said at the beginning of this post, none of these games are necessarily bad.

I can justify my $60 purchase with every single one of them, except this one. Kingdom Hearts 3 was a complete waste of my time and money. I was never engaged in the button-mashy gameplay or the clusterfuck of a story in the entire 30-hour playthrough. Nothing about this game is redeemable.

In fact, I’d rather spend a month as a fluffer in LA than play through this fucking game ever again.

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My Favorite Fellow Nerd(s)

You Fucked Up

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