Games that need to die
No matter how much you want to deny it, there’s always those few games series that you wish you’ll never see again. Game titles, that upon gazing at, will immediately make you cringe. The horror just never ends. No matter how much you beg, pray, and plead to the heavens, they just never get any better. Whomever is reading this, I hope to sway your poor soul to let go. Personally, I would love to put Grand Theft Auto on this list, but if repetition was the only deciding factor, Pokémon would be the undying winner. The lack of fresh ideas with old concepts is the biggest killer of these franchises.
Did you really think we’d miss Assassin’s Creed? The game is centered around playing your ancestors memories from the past, and ironically, makes you play the same thing with every entry over, and over again. At first, AC was a true pioneer in the sandbox genre. The story was great, if not a little convoluted. The gameplay was unlike anything we’d ever experienced; much like how Sonic first came onto the scene after years of slowly hopping over pipes. The set pieces of the past were so gorgeously rendered and meticulously recreated they could have been shown off in history museums. Even though every game had something “new” to offer (recruiting noob assassins, exploring tombs, and taking down pirates in battleships) it didn’t venture far enough from the main selling point of the game. Climbing and killing. Those mechanics are what made Ubisoft so much money so I can’t blame them for not straying too far from it, but before long, some of us start to question what the company has in mind for the series future.
Dragon Ball Z Budokai
At the start of this series there lies a fresh idea for fighting games; the over the shoulder, third person camera. Akin to God of War before it, debuting epic cinematics and quick-time events (which I absolution hate BecauseThey’reGlorifiedCasinoSlotMachinesAndIfThatsYourIdeaOfGamingThenGetTheFuckOuttaMyFace). Honestly, I still appreciate DBZ:B for its contribution to games by giving us something as simple as a new camera angle, but 16 years later literally jack shit has changed. You still throw yellow snowballs at each other, you still button mash, and you still stand in the middle of the fucking arena waiting to get enough testosterone built up to bleach your hair. This series almost squeezed by with the newest entry, Dragon Ball Z: Extreme Butoden for stepping back and letting itself fall into a classic style, 2D fighting game, but it’s too little too late. It’s still a fighting game. Except now, they have deliberately changed nothing. Nope, fuck that! Don’t shit in my cereal and call it ketchup.
Before you go chasing me with your pitchforks and scythes, admit it, you see Final Fantasy so much that when you see the word fantasy written anywhere, you think Cloud. And if you don’t think about Cloud, you’re thinking of that comically large sword that attaches to his back like DMC Dante’s does (since nobody has money to pay someone to animate a sword fitting in a sheath).That’s really the only thing you can really say about Final Fantasy; The budget. Square was after the highest gain possible and thought they could blow their wad all on marketing instead of making a compelling game. I’ve never heard of anyone saying they played through Final Fantasy more than once per game. Never. There are a few that genuinely tried to be great games, I hear Final Fantasy X was one of them but Final Fantasy (more than any other series on this list) has made bold attempts to rob you of your money. ‘How could Final Fantasy 7 do that UNDED? I’ve bought and rebought that game a dozen times!’ Well I’ll tell you how in 3 simple words; All The Bravest.
This needs to be a fuckin MMO already. Prepare your gear before you go out, check your weapons, potions, and supplies. Sharpen your blades. Gather friends. Trade a little. Head out to the hunt. Build campfires, hunt small game, use loot to make your gear better by painstakingly crafting every single digit of defense. Kill big game. Come back three hours later. Do it all again. Fuck that! I might as well just wake up and go to work.
It’s quite apparent that Mario isn’t going anywhere, but I can’t be the only one getting sick of seeing his face everywhere. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not being disrespectful. Nintendo is a pillar of the gaming industry and has helped to elevate it to where it is now, but along with that is the saturation of Mario’s face in everyday culture. It’s starting to wear thin. The games aren’t bad. In all honesty they are some of the best ever, but goddamn if I hear “wahoo” one more fucking time, I’m going to grow a mustache just to rip it off in spite of him. I don’t believe Mario should die and just be gone forever, but a small five, maybe 20 year Hiatus would be great. Please, just temporarily retire him long enough for me to actually miss him. Long gone are the days that I hear the name Mario and actually get excited.
I know I can’t be the only one who looks at a game with the NFL logo on it and think ‘goddamn, here is another game that’s going to swell up the bargain bin and only make it harder to find good cheap games that I would actually want to play’. Maddengames come out so frequently and have such little improvements from the last title that you really could go fromMadden 98 to Madden 17 and not miss a beat. I don’t believe all sports games should disappear forever, just anything that tries to outdo the actual sport the game is based on. That doesn’t help anyone, it doesn’t make me want to play the game, it doesn’t make me want to watch football. I look at these games more often than I do Indie titles and think to myself ‘here’s something I absolutely will never fucking play, no matter how cheap it is. What a waste of useless plastic’. Other sports games that aren’t based off national teams, whether it be Basketball, Football, Hockey, or Soccer can really strive with the right developers. Just stop allowing EA to shit all over those respective sports with these repetitive games, and the faith will be restored. A perfect example of this is the NBA Street series, and even Mario Strikers (Still, Mario… fuck you). Fantastic sports games that have nothing to do with professional teams and actually inspired me to go out and play Soccer and Basketball. The closest game to break this mold in recent memory wasNHL ’14. ’14 was boasted as being more open to new players and for once in decades, I actually wanted to play a sports game with a professional team on it.
Games don’t have to go extremely overboard to stay fresh. Call of Duty backed themselves into a corner by leading Modern Warfare out into space. Anything else they come up with will need to top that emotionally because cinematically, they have nowhere else to go. On the other side of that same coin, if games don’t progress and just release annually without striving to do better and giving you the same experience, before long, $60 for the same game that came out three years earlier is sounding a hell of a lot more expensive than you’d expect. I experienced this myself when I started waiting two years before buying a new Assassin’s Creed, or CoD. Only the strong survive, and if your series isn’t helping to push the gaming medium out of the “kids toy” reputation that we have (no doubt from stupid kids that want to get online and call everybody’s mom a twat), then you’re only hindering our growth.