Hollywood has kind of tarnished the idea of rebooting series over the last several years. Sure, there are some greats, such as Casino Royale and Batman Begins, but there’s also The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (say what you will, but the first entry in that series wasn’t terrible) and the upcoming (and probably bad) Fantastic Four. The concept has largely gone unused in the video game world, so here are five suggestions on games that need to be rebooted.
5.) Armed and Dangerous
Original Developer: Planet Moon Studios
New Developer: Gearbox Software
Armed and Dangerous was originally released on the Xbox and PC in 2003. It, perhaps unwisely, marketed itself as a comedy first and an action game second, and that’s ultimately a decision that came back and bit them in the ass and the game unfortunately didn’t sell well enough to see a sequel (this will be a theme throughout).
But now is the perfect time for a modernized update on Armed and Dangerous. As the gaming industry grows, so does it’s audience’s thirst for different content. Sure, Armed and Dangerous focused heavily on shooting, but, not unlike Ratchet and Clank and Sunset Overdrive, it featured a wealth of interesting and hilarious weapons (such as the Land Shark Gun). Gamers’ appetite for comedy is only growing, as proven by the success of South Park: The Stick of Truth, and shooting will always be a cornerstone of gaming. If anyone knows how to perfectly meld those two things, it’s Gearbox Software.
4.) Syphon Filter
Original Developer: Sony Bend (formerly Eidetic)
New Developer: Sony Bend
Syphon Filter is one of the stranger series to have died, considering the wealth of talent at Sony Bend and gamers’ continuing interest in high-tech spies and the military. It’s also a series that featured more than a few sequels, with the last entry coming to the PSP (Syphon Filter: Logan’s Shadow) in 2007.
With the success of the PS4, there really isn’t a better time to re-introduce the series a new generation of gamers. Keep the high-tech gadgets. Keep the stealth and shooting. Add in higher production values and high-quality cut scenes, and push for a heavier focus on creating a cinematic experience with some big set piece moments and Syphon Filter could be Sony’s biggest property. Of course, keep it in Bend. Those guys have proven themselves in the handheld market. Give them a shot at the big screen.
3.) Jak and Daxter
Original Developer: Naughty Dog
New Developer: Sanzaru Games
Naughty Dog has largely changed direction since they last released a game in the Jak and Daxter series, focusing more heavily on darker and more grounded content. That said, Jak 2 and Jak 3, were clear indicators of the direction in which the studio was headed. And Naughty Dog did admit to, at one point, considering a new entry in the series on the PS3, but that never worked out and, frankly, I’m not sure I want them to return to the series.
With Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time, Sanzaru games proved to everyone that they knew and loved PS2-era platformers. They created what some might consider the best game in that series, so there’s little reason they couldn’t do the same thing with the Jak series. Restart it from the ground up, but keep much of the premise from the original trilogy. Skipping to the tone of Jak 2 is enticing, but there’s something to be said about the collection-fest of the original game.
2.) Jet Force Gemini
Original Developer: Rare
New Developer: Retro Studios
Jet Force Gemini came out during what many would consider Rare’s “golden years.” They were seemingly untouchable, releasing great game after great game on the Nintendo 64. Then Microsoft came along and bought them, and has done very little of interest since (they developed Perfect Dark Zero on the 360, and Grabbed by the Ghoulies on the original Xbox).
In a lot of ways, Nintendo has leaned heavily on Retro Studios the way they previously had on Rare. Retro relaunched the Metroid franchise with Metroid Prime, one of the greatest games of all time. The logistics are much more complicated than I have any interest in getting into, but if Nintendo could snag the rights to Jet Force Gemini from Rare, Retro could reboot the series on the Wii U or the 3DS and get to the nitty-gritty of what made the game great – or basically do what Retro does so damn well.
1.) Advent Rising
Original Developer: GlyphX Games
New Developer: Telltale Games
Advent Rising was a little ahead of it’s time, and suffered because of it. It was by no means a perfect game, but it’s attitude towards grandiose sci-fi and cinematics were barely even matched by Halo. And that’s really what makes Advent Rising such an interesting property today.
Revamping the series should be handled by the folks at Telltale Games, and it would totally fit their pedigree. Yes, it’ll feature almost no shooting, but who cares? We’ve got plenty of sci-fi shooters. What gaming is missing is it’s Battlestar Galactica, something that is fully primed to be a big action, set-piece oriented, game, but instead takes the higher road, focusing on characters and a plot, full of twists and turns. It might seem like something different, but Telltale has proven they can take a property and make it their own, while completely honoring what made that property special in the first place.
What do you think needs to be rebooted? Did I miss one of your favorites? Let us know in the comments below!