10 Most Controversial Video Games Of All Time

1. Death Race (1976, Arcade)
Known to be "sick" by countless media outlets, earning it the title of the world's first controversial video game.

2. Mortal Kombat (1992, Arcade)

Noted for its digitized sprites and its high levels of blood and gore, including, most notably, its graphic fatalities—finishing moves, requiring a sequence of buttons to perform, which, in part, led to the creation of the ESRB.

3. Doom (1993, PC)

It hit big time when it was tied to the tragic 1999 massacre at Columbine High School. Several victims' families filed lawsuits against the film and video game industries, which were ultimately dismissed.

4. Postal (1997, PC)

Naming a game after a slang term describing homicides by disgruntled U.S. Postal employees during the '80s and '90s might be considered a lapse in judgment which is exactly what the USPS sought when they sued the pants off the developers for trademark infringement. The case would eventually be tossed out of court.

5. Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (2004, Playstation 2)

The incident opened the floodgates of video game legislation, resulted in a massive recall and re-rating of San Andreas, and obliterated the 2005 fiscal earnings of Take 2 Interactive.

6. Resistance: Fall of Man (2006, Playstation 3)

The designers forgot to ask the Church of England for permission to use Manchester Cathedral in a game featuring guns, bullets and alien hordes. Both sides eventually made nice, though the seemingly negative publicity led to a significant increase in sales.

7. Manhunt 2 (2007; Playstation 2, Wii, PSP)

Allowed users to perform horrific executions using the system's motion-sensitive controllers. That quickly earned it the dreaded AO rating by the ESRB, effectively rendering it banned until the developers edited the offending content.

8. Mass Effect (2007, Xbox 360)

When Fox News and psychologist Cooper Lawrence heard that players could consummate a romantic relationship in this role-playing adventure, they went on the offensive. Unfortunately, they also got the facts wrong, resulting in a deluge of angry words from game publisher EA and tons of free publicity for the award-winning game.

9. LittleBigPlanet (2008, Playstation 3)

The game raised the ire of the Muslim world when it was discovered that one of the game's licensed songs contained sacred passages from the Qur'an. Sony issued a full recall only days before releasing, costing the company both revenue and peace of mind during the busy holiday season.

10. Resident Evil 5 (2009; Xbox 360)

It has been accused of promoting racist imagery by featuring a white protagonist killing hordes of black zombies. Despite the controversy, the game has already shipped over 4 million units worldwide.

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