When studios aren’t brave enough to release a brand new IP, they often release the third game in whatever cash cow they have on annual release. But every once in a while, they ressurect a classic game that has fallen off the radar. Sometimes studio know which games to bring back…sometimes not. BNP got some suggestions though…
This very well slipped under the radar of a lotta gamers. Understandably so as it was a Japanese import that sleeked its way onto shelves here in the midst of the survival horror craze (see: Resident Evil, Silent Hill, etc.). Galerians technically fell into that category too (even featured Res-Ev style gameplay movement) but was different in one very significant way: No weapons. Instead, the lead protagonist, Rion, utilizes an array of psychic abilities to combat foes. And all of his offensive psycho-attacks require the careful use of meds (PPECs) that allow him to hit the stunt button for a limited amount of time. I say careful because over usage of meds/offensive attacks caused the kid to “short” or “brain-spasm so hard that his power starts killing everything including his own health bar”. A re-imagining of this as a first person RPG employing sophisticated control over psychic powers using dual joysticks I think would turn the game on its ear. Real talk, there were a healthy list of things wrong with the game, but I think given the leaps in gaming & graphics since its 2000 release & the desperate need for increasingly innovative gameplay, this could definitely be the rap game Juicy J of this survival horror thing.
There is absolutely positively no other franchise that needs & deserves some new-gen love & a triumphant return to the starving masses more than Power Stone. For those who are somehow tragically unfamiliar with this gawd-tier fighting game, “Stone” in a nutshell is a four person battle royale involving destructible environments, epic stage transition fighting, & epic super-finishing moves (one kid essentially goes Goku Super-Saiyan 5 Spirit Bomb on all the peons). If you’re thinking “hey that sounds a lot like Super Smash Bros” its because essentially it is Super Smash Bros twin who lost out in the end (in my humble opinion) to not having the canon of characters to pull from as combatants that Nintendo had (who’s really saying no to being able to lay them hands on suckerMCs as Link??). But it was for that very reason I rolled with Stone more at the time. I had no point of reference to know what each character was capable of, & so part of the fun in gameplay was learning each characters abilities & supermoves. If they crank up the scale of destruction & add some slight deviations to differentiate the game from Super Smash Bros, Power Stone could very well kick in the door, waving the 4-4.
I am well aware of how open-ended RPG & online MMORPG are running the game right now, & how turn-based gameplay is like vinyl or something to cats born during an ancient time where fights had the pacing of a Breakin’ 2 dance battle. But for a game that dropped a Illmatic in Chrono Trigger, then jumped right into Stillmatic with the new millennium Chrono Cross, the franchise has shown it can adapt & survive. Considering how beautifully intricate the storylines always are, their constantly clever iterations of turn-based play & a penchant for multiple endings, who’s to say how Squaresoft could reinvent the wheel with a new Chrono. Why couldn’t it be some weird free-moving, open-world hybrid like Star Ocean meets Elder Scroll? I just have this vision of seeing dual & triple-techs rendered in next-gen graphics & breaking my jaw on the floor out of pure astonishment. A man can dream, yeah?
Gotham City Impostors
In 2011 I bought Batman: Arkham City when it first dropped. In the case lay a beta code for a new first person shooter ip from Warner Bros and Monolith Studios. On the outside it looked childish, stupid and all around poorly done but since I had beat AC in only a few days, I thought I’d give it a shot. What I got in return was one very fun gaming experience. As you can tell by the name GCI takes place in the Batman mythos where basically while the Bat is away the scum of Gotham come out to play. Gamers are taken to Crime Alley, Ace Chemicals and Arkham Asylum in order to participate in all out gang wars between cosplayers dressed as the Bats or the Joker. The premise was goofy, the game was easy to pick up, the weapons and characters and loadouts were all fully customizable so why did this game fail you ask? The simplest answer why any game ultimately fails is money. Whether it be being too cheap to buff up servers, being too lazy to fix glitches, or not rolling out enough content to keep gamers coming back. Monolith really dropped the ball here and ultimately abandoned this ip last year to work on another short lived title “Guardians of Middle-Earth” a MOBA created to coincide with the release of The Hobbit films and thus making them more money. In mid-spring 2014 “Gotham City Impostors” was on sale for only a dollar as part of Playstation’s Flash Sales. A few weeks later after the flash sale it was announced that due to the Gamespy shutdowns GCI will be shut down as well. Although this game is still available on Steam as part of a free-to-play program I would like to see this game get greenlit for a sequel and for it to get the TLC that it needs to be up there with games like Team Fortress.
The Tony Hawk Series
If you would’ve told me 10 years ago that the THPS series would become something of a distant memory in 2014 I would’ve no question called you a liar. I know some gamers and skateboarding purists prefer the Skate series over THPS and that’s cool but where would the Skate series be without Tony Hawk? You could spend your time exploring environments, finding sweet gaps, creating characters, hunting down collectables, etc. This game was easy to pick up and hard to put down. A while ago Activision put out an HD remake with maps from the first three games but the lack of split screen, terrible servers and no character creation ultimately failed to give gamers that same feeling of nostalgia although in all fairness Activision did try. If the developers were to put forth the time and effort in creating a new chapter in the franchise on the same planes as say Tony Hawk Underground or American Wasteland for next gen consoles, I guarantee you that would be enough to get gamers excited.
EA Street Series
It’s funny how Pete Rock & CL Smooth’s “They Reminisce Over You” makes you reminisce over one of the best sports games of all time. NBA or NFL Street, bring them both back. The street series was easy to pick up but it rewarded players who dove deeper into the mechanics whether it be jumping on walls, performing a sick crossover or just jumping 20 feet into the air to block shots the games never got boring. Don’t act like you didn’t enjoy seeing the look of sadness on your opponent’s face after activating your gamebreaker. EA Sports are trash now and EA Sports Big was shut down years ago but I would love to see these games reappear so that newer generations can enjoy them the same way we did.
Def Jam Series
Let’s get this out the way right now, Def Jam: Icon was trash! It threw out everything that we loved about the Def Jam series and added new features making it critically, commercially & universally panned. But the first two installments of the series Def Jam: Vendetta and Def Jam: Fight For New York are undeniable classics. You got to create a character with several different fighting styles and rpg elements that will make you feel fully immersed in what’s going on and don’t let me get started on the over the top special moves which any fan will tell you is the best part of the series. There are several rappers I would love to fight as in a new installment such as Kanye (Only if he wears the bedazzled jewel mask), Fredo Santana, Chief Keef and there are several rappers I want to see beat up such as Drake and I don’t know…DRAKE. Let’s make this dream a reality EA.
Marvel Ultimate Alliance
Think about this, in 2014 the only game that has brought the Marvel Universe together since 2009 has been Lego Marvel Superheroes…let that sink in. Although I have nothing but love for Lego Marvel as any game to play for these expensive next gen consoles are fully welcomed by me at this point. We are really overdo for a sequel to MUA2, a sequel done right. Don’t get me wrong I love the fact that MUA2 adopted the Civil War storyline and to a lesser extent Secret Wars but it seemed like the sequel was missing the charm that made the original such a fun game. Gone were the personalized throws and individual specials. In it’s place were fusion specials where you can select another hero to do a special, thus taking out more enemies which sounds good on paper. But when there are only 4 fusion types that players can execute it wears out it’s welcome pretty fast. Also a lot of characters from the original were either sidelined or made console exclusives. Gone were Doctor Strange, Silver Surfer, Electra, Ghost Rider and Moon Knight and in their place were characters such as Vision, Songbird and Penance…why would I want to play as any of those fam? I don’t even know or care who Penance is. Also MUA2 gave characters only one alternate costume while the original gave each character four. A third game bringing together fan favorites characters from the comics done right would be everything to me at this point.