* BaseBreaker: The [[PimpedOutCar Special Cars]]. While some fans welcome this, others were not amused with this because it wasted modeling time that could be used for demanded cars that are not yet in the game, like Suzuki Swift Sport, Honda Accord Euro R and Nissan [=300ZX=].
* [[strike:Character]] [[CharacterTiers Car Tiers]]
* ComplacentGamingSyndrome: In ''Ver. 2'', everybody and their brother drove a Honda Integra Type R ([=DC2=]) and chose Irohazaka (usually Downhill) ad nauseum for every multiplayer match.
** To a smaller extent, the three Hachiroku variants (especially the 2 door) and the Subaru BRZ/Toyota 86 GT in ''7 AA X'' and ''8 Infinity''
* ContestedSequel: ''Zero''. Was the move from an up/down shifter to a 6-gear H-shifter necessary? Is the new soundtrack a refreshing change of pace, or TheyChangedItNowItSucks? Was moving from data cards to the online-requiring Sega Aime infrastructure a wise move?
%% * GameBreaker: The Integra Type R [=DC2=] in ''Ver. 2''
* MostAnnoyingSound: The loud Buzz/Honk while navigating the selection menus in ''Initial D 3''.
** A few versions/ports of the series also use a different sound effect for screeching tires, a high-pitched squeal that sounds more like a cat in grievous harm instead of rubber spinning on pavement. Especially noticeable in ''Initial D Special Stage'', a port of Version 2, as many players would use a normal controller rather than the steering wheel of the arcade version, meaning they would have to correct their steering angle multiple times throughout a turn due to a smaller and more sensitive control radius. This led to the same ear-splitting squeal playing, stopping, playing, stopping, and so on continuously ''every time a player would go around a corner''.
* ScrappyLevel: Happogahara in ver. 1 through 3 (and 5), Irohazaka and Myogi in ''Initial D 4''. The latter, by the way, is ''supposed'' to be a beginner-level course, but it becomes scrappy when you combine it with a...
* ScrappyMechanic: In ''Initial D 4'', corners have arbitrary speed limits that, if exceeded, will either lock your car's steering (in version 1.2) or cause you to spin out of control (in version 1.5 as well as Initial D 5).
* {{Sequelitis}}: One of the biggest annoyances about all ''Initial D'' games after ''Ver. 3'' isn't necessarily the quality of the games, it's that the game changes significantly with each new release, rendering techniques from the previous version useless, and as a result the game's playerbase has been getting smaller over time.
* ThatOneBoss: Takumi when he's in the Trueno, his father Bunta in all of his appearances, and Ryousuke. There's even a mode in IDAS ver. 2 and 3 called "The Bunta Challenge" where you battle a version of Bunta who improves with subsequent races. It's the only mode where you can ''lose'' points if you lose.
* TheyChangedItNowItSucks:
** ''Initial D 4'' employs a completely different physics engine from its predecessors. Fans complained. Then the "version 1.5" update was released and changed some issues with the original version.
** ''Initial D Zero'', amongst other changes, requires ''unlocking'' the Eurobeat tracks that the series is so well-known for.
* TierInducedScrappy: All FWD vehicles, both versions of the [[strike:Miata]] Roadster, and the [=AE85=]. Though the latter (and its driver in the anime and manga) are already [[ButtMonkey in-universe Scrappies]].