May 20, 2011

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Staff Pick: Games In Need Of Sequels

Staff Pick: Games In Need Of Sequels

Each year we see many games come and go without giving them a second thought.  Aside from the plethora of bargain-bin shovelware, there are quite a few gems that fall through the cracks.  Often times these games develop a cult following, with fans demanding some type of sequel or continuation.  While some franchises suffer from sequelitis (see Tony Hawk or any Activision title) there are some games that are truly deserving of sequels, yet don’t.  These games may have had an enjoyable character, or, worse, could have been the first in a planned trilogy (see Beyond Good & Evil) but regardless of the reason, these are games we feel are worthy of a successor.  If Duke Nukem could finally get a sequel, then we’ can still hold out hope for these picks.

 

Rebecca’s Pick: Might & Magic: Clash of Heroes

I know, I know.  The HD version of this game just came out not that long ago for XBLA and PSN, and you can still get the game on DS.  But this is one of those games that flew under most people’s radar when it was first released, and probably will again partially due to PSN going down shortly after the game released.  This is a fabulous example of how a great developer can craft a great game experience out of ideas that, separately, might seem a bit hackneyed.  My only complaint about the game was its brevity; I wanted more because I enjoyed the experience so much.  It was an RPG, yet not.  A puzzle game, yet more than that.  It was challenging and fun, and I would love to see more of this style gameplay in the future.  So here’s my plea.  To gamers: buy this game if you haven’t already, and the idea of a unique puzzle game at all intrigues you.  To the developer: even if it isn’t a direct sequel, Capy, please make another game with gameplay like this one.

James’ Pick: Conker’s Bad Fur Day

It’s well known that Conker’s Bad Fur Day started out as another squeaky-clean platformer from Rare.  Thankfully, they completely overhauled the entire thing and created one of the best games on the N64 as well as one of my favorite characters in all of gaming.  Granted, there was a remake done for the Xbox a few years back (which I still enjoy), but there hasn’t been a true sequel, and I’m still holding out hope that Rare will release one.  Conker and company were crass, rude, and often immature, yet they were also loveable and definitely memorable.  But you can’t say a game warrants a sequel just based on its characters; thankfully, Conker’s gameplay was also incredibly fun.  The gameplay varied from platforming, shooting, racing, and even minor puzzle elements.  Each changed depending on the setting and definitely fit the incredibly absurd story.  One objective required helping a bee “pollinate” a busty flower, and another had you feeding sweet corn to a pit culminating in one of the most memorable boss fights ever.  While the movie references and spoofs feel dated today, they were fun and definitely funny at the time, and I could only imagine what they would put in a current game.  Overall the single-player was fun, the multiplayer was a blast, and the story and characters were hilarious.  One of the last great games on the N64 that definitely deserves another sequel.  I just hope that Rare takes the time off from making their Kinect and Avatar stuff to revive one of their last great games (although Viva Piñata was pretty good.)

Liz’s Pick: Chrono Series

The Chrono series is one of Square’s most loved and yet neglected franchises.  Released for the SNES in ’95, the game follows a group of adventurers who travel through time to prevent a global tragedy.  Chrono Trigger has been called revolutionary with multiple endings, manipulation of seven different eras, each affecting the future, and sidequests devoted to character progression.  The battle system felt fresh in that there were fewer random encounters (due to most enemies visible while questing) and no transition to a battle map.  Also, each characters had unique magic (techs) and if certain members were partied together long enough, they developed duo attacks further emphasizing the characters’ relationships.  Along with the incredible story and memorable music, gamers were given a wonderful experience and have deemed it one of the greatest games of all time.

When fans learned of the trademarking of the name Chrono Break, many speculated that finally we would see a direct sequel to the SNES classic.  Five years after the release of the original, Square released Chrono Cross for the PS1.  While very well received and great in its own right, it wasn’t what fans originally expected.  Years passed, the trademark expired in the US, and Square has also remained silent, neither confirming a release nor denying its existence.  While there have been talks of a direct sequel, unfortunately, after the release of Chrono Cross, a number of key staff left the company mainly for Monolith Soft.  With a remastering on the DS and PS1, planned rereleases on mobile devices, and the port to the Virtual Console, it’s obvious that there’s still a market and interest for the game.  Countless amounts of letters, emails and articles center around the need for a sequel and at E3 ’09, Square Enix VP Shinji Hashimoto remarked,”If people want a sequel, they should buy more!”

Grant’s Pick: Super Puzzle Fighter

When we think of Capcom now a days we mostly see fighting games, or “Western” themed games like Dead Rising.  However, years ago they were quite the risk takers.  In those days, Puyo Puyo was extremely well known and popular.  Seeking similar success in the puzzle market, Capcom created something of a joke game based off the long stream of Street Fighter 2 titles. This was Super Puzzle Fighter 2 Turbo (the only in the series) and was a fairly interesting puzzle game. What made the game interesting was when you broke “x” amount of blocks, you did a special.  Since all the characters were either from Darkstalkers, Street Fighter, and even one from Cyberbots, the move sets were fairly easy to transfer over.  Despite the large success the game had and the fact it was remade for the HD remix series, a second game never came to be.  Now that Capcom has so many other series, or at least fighters, it would be great to see a reboot featuring them.  Even if it’s another downloadable title, it would be worth seeing.


 

There are tons of other great games that deserve sequels such as Half Life 2: Episode 2 and Shenmue 2, but these were our choices.  What do you think?  What games do you feel are in need of a sequel?  Leave a comment below and tell us what your pick would be.