Would you Adam and believe it? It’s 2016! It’s the future!
And in 2016 the game industry it’s trying its hand at various tactics at parting you from your well earned dollar-dollar. One such such tactic is the reboot.
I generally treat reboots like the neighbours – turn off the lights and pretend to be out – but some reboots do prove fruitful, just look at Tomb Raider and the promising Resident Evil 7.
So here’s a few unloved games from years gone by which could do with a makeover and be introduced to a modern audience.
1. Rival Schools: United By Fate
I’m not very good at fighting games. At least I thought that as I could never get to grips with Street Fighter or Mortal Kombat and no one played anything else in the 90s. But it seems that Rival Schools had a slightly different control method to other Capcom fighters.
Rival Schools had two kick and two punch buttons, as opposed to other Capcom brawlers that had three each. It seemed to make things easier for me, because I loved Rival Schools. A sequel was released for the Dreamcast called Project Justice but we’ve seen nothing since, although the game’s creator Hideaki Itsuno revealed he would like to make a sequel.
G-Police had two games back in the 90’s. They were set on Jupiter’s moon Callisto in 2097 and it gave you massive domed cities to fly around in. In a pre-GTA 3 world, this was a revelation. Okay on reflection it wasn’t the most interesting city. But it managed to recreate a Blade Runner style city which felt alive.
The game involved you working through various missions and included fun dogfight style game play. It felt exciting back on the PS1. Also, the game’s cheats allow you to pilot other vehicles that were cut out of the main game, including ground vehicles (although they did not have proper physics). Imagine how awesome this game would be with modern technology, we need this!
3. Earthworm Jim
Poor old Jim, what happened to him? Not many gaming old school mascots had a trilogy of games and a Saturday morning cartoon voiced by Homer Simpson himself Dan Castellaneta. But following his N64 debacle Earthworm Jim 3D, the franchise crashed.
There’s been no reasonable remasters and people consider the first two games in the series to be overrated. But they were good, full of wacky, surreal humour (cow launcher). Interesting level design and large, clear graphics all made Jim a success along with bizarre and fantastic characters helping it become a SNES/Mega Drive must have. Retro is really in right now, so why can’t we have another dose of worm with great big muscles and a really big ray gun?
4. The Getaway
The idea of a photorealistic version of London was the future, well at least at the turn of the century. GTA 3 had brought fully three dimensional open worlds alive and suddenly everyone wanted a piece of the pie. Gangster movies were big business in the late 90’s and early 00’s and this is the obvious inspiration for The Getaway’s content.
However, hype was the weapon that really knocked The Getaway. The PS2 was a great machine at the time, but photorealism isn’t even possible on consoles these days, so people seemed to look a little ‘ham-faced’. The game had some interesting design choices, like car indicators telling you where to go. But the shooting, running and driving didn’t work that well. It oddly got good reviews, though. The Getaway spawned a sequel, Black Friday, which arrived to little fanfare, the impressive looking Getaway PS3 tech demo never made it past the prototype stage. Perhaps it’s time to get your cockney on once again?
Dizzy is the oldest game series on this list as it was most popular in the 80s’s. He was an egg man, who wore boxing gloves but never used them – Dizzy was all about problem solving, not violence! The game was a 2D open world style affair (I won’t say Metroidvania) in which you travel around, pick up items and work out how to progress further.
Dizzy only gives you three lives to complete the entire game, which could be a pain considering there were insta-deaths at times. But the game also had a energy meter, which allowed you to take damage and even dealt out damage based on the height you fall. Energy meters were not something that appeared in many games when Dizzy first appeared. With the rise of Telltale games and games like Portal, there’s room for games that require you to use your brain as opposed to your brawn. Let’s give Dizzy another chance, eh?