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This Best Selling Game Series Is The Most Overrated

Today, some of the industry's most enduring franchises have histories that stretch back decades. Not just a couple of decades, by the way, because at this point, some of the best-selling video games, like "Pac-Man," have been moving units for more than 40 years.

While every game has its detractors, in general, franchises that have run for a long while have at least got their formula down, and their publishers take a certain amount of care to ship a quality product. So while not every "Zelda" game is quite as revolutionary as "Breath of the Wild," when you pick up a game in the series, you have a good idea of what to expect and can be reasonably sure that whatever you buy should be bug-free and fun to play.

However, in the modern era of gaming, with games-as-service, mobile spinoffs, seasonal content, and microtransactions, it can be hard to avoid the most popular titles. To find out which series has gotten too big for its own good, SVG asked over 4,600 gamers worldwide which best-selling video game series is the most overrated. Our poll came with a definitive answer, with a clear majority of gamers singling out one massive franchise.

Over 60% of gamers think that the Call of Duty franchise is overrated

By a considerable margin, the game that the most poll respondents thought was overrated was the long-running shooter series, "Call of Duty." An overwhelming 61% of gamers said that the series doesn't live up to its massive popularity, which has made "Call of Duty" one of the best-selling franchises of all time.

Interestingly, since the original "Call of Duty" was released in 2003, the "Call of Duty" franchise is the youngest in SVG's poll. However, Activision has not let that hold the series back, and during the 18 years the series has been active, the company has released 17 major titles in the franchise, at a pace of one per year since 2005 (via ComicYears). If you include the battle royale spin-off, "Call of Duty: Warzone," on that list, it becomes 18 games in 18 years, which makes it understandable that some gamers feel that the series has gotten more attention than it deserves.

The next series that fans feel is overrated is the ubiquitous Pokémon franchise, which 15% of gamers feel doesn't deserve the amount of attention it receives. The Pokémon series got its start in 1996 with the "Pokémon Red Version" and the "Pokémon Blue Version," but the franchise has become a much larger media franchise, with a trendy card game, TV show, and mobile spin-off (via Britannica).

There are plenty of other video game series that gamers feel are overrated

While "Call of Duty" and "Pokémon" account for over three-fourths of the vote, plenty of other games made the list. In third place was the "Grand Theft Auto" series, with 11% of the vote, which launched in 1997. "Grand Theft Auto" actually has the fewest games in its franchise of any on SVG's poll, with only seven primary titles. However, the last of those, "Grand Theft Auto 5" and its companion "Grand Theft Auto Online," continue to rack up unfathomable digital sales, even though "GTA 5" was released in 2013.

In last place, with 9% of the vote, was the "Mario" franchise, including all of that series' assorted spin-offs, such as "Mario Party," "Mario Kart," and the various "Mario Sports" titles. "Mario" is one of the best-selling and most expansive franchises in gaming history, and while it certainly has plenty of fans, there is a solid section of gamers who think it's all a bit much.

In addition, 4% of respondents chose to write in their own choices for the most overrated franchise, with most votes going to the "Red Dead Redemption" series. While there are only a few games in the series, it is highly praised, and some felt undeservedly so. Next, gamers thought that EA's signature sports franchises, "FIFA" and "Madden," were overrated. The last series to receive a significant number of write-in votes was "Assassin's Creed," which, like "Call of Duty," has put out a massive number of titles over the last decade.