10 Most Overused Settings In Videogames

Posted By | On 17th, Aug. 2011 Under Feature, Slider | Follow This Author @Pramath1605

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We often hear people talk about cliches, or overused settings or unimaginative levels in videogames. Whenever we think of these, things such as post-apocalyptic, Tolkien-esque and other several overused settings come to mind.
Below, we have complied a list of ten settings we think are the most overused in video games. Enjoy the list, and don’t forget to leave your comments below!



To be fair, forests aren't as badly overused as most of the other entries on this list are. However, they've been, shall we say, 'popular' settings for levels and sometimes, entire videogames. Thus, we have your traditional forest dungeon in Zelda games, a forest themed race track, and maybe a forest level in platformers, but we also have entire videogames like Metal Gear Solid 3, Uncharted and Crysis set in forests. The one good thing that can be said about this though is that developers almost always come up with good justifications and plots for the appearance of a forest level. Metal Gear Solid 3 and Crysis in particular, stand out for how well they constructed their entire stories to accommodate the forest setting, and how they did it with aplomb. As of right now, forests aren't very overused. However, all we have to wait for is one breakthrough game that uses the forest setting and is insanely successful commercially, before we begin to see it crop up everywhere.

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  • (Joking!) How about “City Streets”? Think of all of the well known and popular gaming series that take place on a street? LA Noire, Yakuza, Gran Turismo, Driver, GTA, Mario Kart, Fallout… the list is endless. Not to mention the stereotypical RPG where you walk through cities to sell your wares and hit up the local tavern. Or all of the FPS games that take place in urban enviroments. I think city streets have been long overused. Shame on the creatively challenged developers falling back on this trite and hackneyed setting!

  • To put your article in other words:
    Please, do not make any games any more, because the setting is always used elsewhere. You stupid idiots.

    • dib

      So if those 10 settings are the most overused erm what does that leave left to make? if you have made it 12 and said sky (flight sims) and grassland (nearly every game) then we would have no settings left for games.

      Cant use most land as youve nocked that out cant use space cant use a fantasy (tolkein) as thats then classed as overused. shall we all stand in mid air and do nothing.

      One of the most stupid articles yet, nice work.

  • Shut the fuck up. You just named like every setting. I don’t even really notice this shit other than modern war, who gives a fuck?

  • Sigh I can never get the time back I spent reading your article. At least this content gives me good reason to never read your site again.

  • The dumbest article ever wrote… Not surprising from so called web journalists… go back to news looting…

  • I know which setting isn’t covered that can be brought back from the past! The food theme! Imagine a call of Duty food fight set in a ginger bread house…

    Seriously though, I agree with all the comments. all those settings are rdidculously ambiguous and covers not only every video game out there (even the good ones) but also a whole lot of films and books.

    Interesting thing is, when I think of “over used jungle setting” I don’t think of Mario, or Sonic, I only think of FPSs. And when I think of “Ice wasteland theme” I don’t think of COD, I think of old school platform games. So I’m not really sure if it’s fair to lump them all together just because one of them has trees and the other has snow :/

    Other popular themes you should add to your list so that future games are made in a blank white box:

    Near future despotic government setting.
    Near future
    Far future
    Any type of future
    The past
    Alien world (surprise you didn’t think of that eh?)
    Anyone I haven’t mentioned.

    Now you’ve completely covered everything!

  • LOL

    LOL the funny thing is this guy mentioned 75% of the environments available, snow , desert, forest, underwater seriously?

  • I guess you want a game seting based on your livingroom. Oh wait, there is one. It’s called “Your Hurting Life”


  • Hey, what about NEW YORK?
    GTA IV, Crysis2 and many more games play in New York. Booooring.

  • So where else do you want games to be based?? Desert is not really done that much & uncharted 3 is going there… but no because U3 is going to be in the desert you automatically add it to your list…. News FLASH: THAT’S ALL WE’VE GOT!

  • You know what is overused in videogames? Their videogame-ness….

  • tim

    many things stupid in this article. basically everything is overused. Article should have had the title: most not used setting in games. answer: reality.
    also, i don’t like the word overused. should have been most used. with a different list.

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  • So… basically every setting is overused?


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