Devastating earthquakes, a Trump presidency and the deaths of Prince, Bowie and Crowe - here's why we wish we could have skipped the year that's been.
The absolutely, undeniably terrible stuff:
Death is inevitable - it will all strike us one day or another, and many legends will pass in our lifetime. But that doesn't excuse the ludicrous number of celebrities that have passed on in 2016 - many of whom died well before their time.
The year got off to an awful start with the tragic death of iconic pop star David Bowie on January 11 - Ziggy Stardust eventually succumbing to a deadly bout of cancer, which he'd fought for months in total secrecy.
But no one could have foreseen that that was just the beginning of a terrible wave of celebrity deaths that saw the passing of Black Cap great Martin Crowe, world-renowned boxer Muhammad Ali, legendary funk-rock artist Prince, actors Gene Wilder and Alan Rickman, and folk singer Leonard Cohen.
The year was finished off with a flurry more celebrity deaths as queer icon and pop star George Michael, Star Wars actress Carrie Fisher and Watership Down author Richard Adams all passed away after Christmas.
Moko's killers' sentencing
The details of the toddler's death were harrowing, and the sentence handed down to his killers even worse in the eyes of many Kiwis, who believed the offenders should have faced a murder charge and been jailed for more than 17 years.
Tania Shailer, 26, and her boyfriend, David Haerewa, pleaded guilty to manslaughter after Moko's death in August last year. They had abused and neglected the three-year-old for two months before he died from injuries they inflicted on him.
The pair were supposed to be looking after Moko while his mother, Nicola Dally-Paki, was at hospital caring for one of her other children.
In the months since the case, there have been numerous protests held in Moko's memory, and last month his killers appealed the sentence due to their supposed mental health issues.
Rising house prices
It's that same old, miserable tale, but this year it hit new lows as house prices in Auckland and around the country rose to devastating new highs.
Poor millennials have been left priced out of the housing market in the city they grew up in, as the average residential property value ticked over $1 million for the first time in history. And while growth is slowing in Auckland, Queenstown recently became the second New Zealand city to see the average house increase to an eye-watering seven figures.
With housing nationwide being built at a painstakingly slow pace and position of Housing Minister dropped from Cabinet, the lack of supply doesn't look like it'll be addressed any time soon. But it's not all bad. You could always move to Kawerau, New Zealand's cheapest housing district, which boasts an average house value of just $158,602.
Acts of terror seem to be increasing in regularity, and that largely comes down to the burgeoning threat of terrorist group Islamic State (IS) over the past decade or so.
Three-hundred West African migrants were rounded up and executed on the first day of the 2016 by IS, and that was followed by a spate of bombings in Turkey, Libya, Syria, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iraq. Boko Haram also dealt out their share of attacks in Nigeria and Cameroon, while Al-Shabaab were active in Somalia.
But it wasn't until a nail bombing in Brussels, Belgium in March that killed 32 people in March that the Western world truly sat up and took notice. That was followed by a shooting at a gay nightclub in Florida resulting in the deaths of 49 people and a truck attack in Nice, France that killed 86 people on Bastille Day.
Another truck attack in Berlin on December 19 rounded out the year in tragic fashion, with the deaths of another 12 people.
Disaster struck on October 25 as a vacant raft on Dreamworld's Thunder River Rapids ride became stuck at the bottom of a conveyor belt, just metres from where people were getting on and off.
The next raft hit the stuck raft at full speed, mounted it and tipped over backwards, spilling the occupants into the water and onto the conveyor belt mechanism. Of the six people on board only the two children survived, while all four adults died.
Dreamworld's woes were compounded by reports that the ride was manned by a teenager on her first day on the job.
The ride has since been decommissioned "out of respect for the memories of Cindy Low, Roozbeh Araghi, Kate Goodchild and Luke Dorsett and their deeply affected families".
Ireland beat the All Blacks
Ahead of their game against the Irish, the All Blacks had just become the first team to win 18 first-tier international games in succession. But any hopes of extending their record-breaking run further came to an end when they were comprehensively defeated in Chicago.
Their 40-29 loss came after a Four Nations series that had seen New Zealand cruise past weak Springboks, Wallabies and Pumas sides with ease, with Kiwis for the first time bemoaning how simple it was for the All Blacks to pick apart their opponents.
Perhaps that had birthed some complacency in the All Black ranks, or maybe it was the travel? Perhaps it was the myriad injuries and missing players, or Aaron Smith's bathroom misdemeanour? Perhaps they just had an off day?
Whatever it was, the reigning world champions were beaten by a team they had never lost to in 111 years of playing one another. Ouch.
The Kaikōura quake
We've always known there's a high risk of earthquakes in our little corner of the world - the Christchurch quake of 2011 was enough warning of that. But that doesn't mean the 7.8-magnitude tremor on the South Island's east coast was expected.
Mercifully, the quake had minimal impact on Christchurch residents still recovering from the damage caused by the shakes there five years ago. But other regions were seriously affected, particularly Kaikōura.
Former Prime Minister John Key estimated the reconstruction would cost billions of dollars, and landslides, damaged infrastructure and the threat of quake-made dams bursting still blight central parts of New Zealand.
Two deaths and 57 injuries were reported across the country, while several main roads and rail lines were shut down and don't look like they will be reopening until later in 2017.
NZ rugby scandals
Duco Events chief executive Martin Snedden perhaps summed it all up best when he suggested New Zealand Rugby (NZR) had been "reasonably Teflon-[coated] in public issues" over many years, and was ill-prepared for when it all hit the fan.
And that it did in August, when the Chiefs were accused of inappropriately touching a stripper hired for their end-of-season celebrations without her consent. NZR's investigation was internal, and only saw the stripper questioned at the very end, with chief executive Steve Tew apologising a month later over how they'd handled the incident.
But it didn't stop there; Losi Filipo was next, the 18-year-old Wellington Rugby player escaping a conviction for assaulting four people last year, including two women. He was let off because of the effect a conviction would have on his career, before a public outcry prompted the termination of his contract and an appeal, which saw him sentenced to nine months' supervision. NZR again received criticism for its reluctance to get involved.
All Black Aaron Smith's antics in a disabled bathroom shed even more light on our national sport's ugly underbelly, but was dealt with promptly by way of a suspension and public apology.
The stuff that was debatably also pretty terrible:
Where to begin?
It's astonishing that the business mogul managed to garner the millions of votes required to take up residence at the White House, given his lack of political nous - as well as his penchant for xenophobic and sexist remarks.
Donald Trump's inclination to speak freely and with little fear of consequence gave the world a glimpse of the man behind the Uluru-orange tan and outrageous hair, and in the face of countless controversial moments, the soon-to-be-leader of the free world managed to not only remain in the race, but win it.
In one of the dirtiest campaigns in US political history, makeshift-Republican Mr Trump latched onto ideas normally only taken seriously by far-right conspiracy theorists and made them mainstream - casting doubt in the minds of American voters as to the reliability of Democratic adversary Hillary Clinton.
And while he seems to have backed down from many of his most polarising election promises, Mr Trump's White House appointments, never-back-down mentality and history of bigotry are a cause for concern for many ahead of his four-year term.
Similar to the election of Mr Trump, Brexit divided its country but dumbfounded those looking on from the rest of the world, with many people watching in horror as the UK voted to leave the European Union.
Led by UKIP leader Nigel Farage, who controversially jumped ship at the conclusion of the campaign, the Brexit charge thrived off promises of tightened immigration, a stronger economy and the prospect of the UK doing what it wanted without an EU sign-off.
But the main stories to have come out of the move have so far been largely negative. The murder of Labour MP Jo Cox at the hands of a far-right extremist just weeks before the referendum should have been a bad omen, with race-related hate crime increasing immediately after the vote.
Meanwhile inflation has been surging in recent times, and the relationships between the UK and other European nations appear to be wavering as negotiations on its exit continue.
The other reasons 2016 sucked:
The death of Harambe
The much-loved gorilla was shot dead in his enclosure at Cincinnati Zoo after dragging around a young boy who'd snuck in. The whole thing became a huge deal, with Harambe's death mourned worldwide and the boy's mother and the zoo castigated for their part in the tragedy. But it did at least result in the creation of one of 2016's top memes.
Havelock North's gastro crisis
The bug made thousands of people sick in the small Hawke's Bay town, and the local council was widely criticised for their pace, or lack thereof, in dealing with it. The deaths of three people are believed to be linked to the outbreak.
The Chapecoense plane crash
A plane went down in Colombia in November carrying 77 people, including a football team about to compete in the first South American club final in their history. Only six survived the crash, and a club that had risen to prominence in recent years was devastated.
The battle for Aleppo
The siege - which started four-and-a-half years ago - continued in 2016, with Syrian rebels battling for the territory against government forces, which have been bolstered by the intervention of Russia and Iran. Air strikes and bombings have riddled the city in the last 12 months, with tens of thousands killed.