What’s the common denominator between many of the top-selling video games today — Call of Duty, Grand Theft Auto, NFL Madden, Super Smash Bros, etc? Welp, they’re true game franchises, as new installments in the series are repeatedly released.
You see the same trend in Hollywood movies and television, as well. There’s just something about iconic characters and comfort that hit players and viewers close to home, which got us thinking: which former game franchises could use a revival in 2021 and onward? Let’s discuss:
Remember this arcade-style football game? It was the perfect one-versus-one game to play with friends at home — which in today’s world with full-fledged eSports, would make for a fun title to watch and bet on at online betting sites.
NFL Blitz was the go-to football game of the late ‘90s and early 2000s, especially known for ramping up the violence and scoring, a perfect byproduct of the era. Many of those same elements would likely resonate today, especially as a direct competitor to a more toned-down, realistic NFL Madden series.
Speaking of NFL Madden, it’s the only football game in town these days. It could benefit from industry competition from a revived NFL Blitz franchise. In that scenario, gamers win most as two developers try to outdo one another to gain football gaming supremacy.
Perhaps the most popular fight game today is Mortal Kombat, which leads us to believe this ex-fighting franchise would be embraced with open arms by today’s gamers.
First released in 1994, Killer Instinct was deeply inspired by the MK series — which means a lot of in-game blood, over-the-top characters, but also an insane combo system, which was its fresh spin on the fight genre.
The game was “rebooted” in 2013 for Xbox consoles but largely flopped in terms of sales. But that performance is less about the franchise and more about the game execution. Why reboot, when you can reinvent the entire series? A completely re-done installment of Killer Instinct that borrows elements that made the first two so beloved (e.g. graphic violence and chain-linking combos) is a recipe for success.
One of the great game mysteries of our time is undoubted, why did EA stop making Dead Space games? The first three were monster hits, especially the first which is an all-timer in the survival horror genre alongside Resident Evil.
The franchise went away after Dead Space 3 in 2013, but given the new-found enthusiasm for space exploration — which is credited to Elon Musk’s mission to Mars with SpaceX — we believe Dead Space would strike a chord with today’s society.
And honestly, the game industry at-large could use a fresh take on a space-based game. You’d think the galaxy would make for an out-of-this-world (literally) adventure for gamers, but few developers have taken advantage since the Space Invaders days.
Jak and Daxter
When you think about the Playstation 2 era, one of the first franchises that comes to mind is Jak and Daxter. The PS-only title was the perfect mash-up of multiple game genres — action adventure, puzzle, racing, and shooter.
Yet, Sony stopped releasing main installments after Jak 3 in 2004. Since then, spin-offs and remakes have been abundant, but as we said about Killer Instinct, today’s gamers don’t want a repackage, they want a re-imagined take for today’s world.
Moreover, the game studio behind the first series games, Naughty Dog, would surely be up to the task at resurrecting. It’s the same developers responsible for massively-popular titles like Uncharted and The Last of Us. We venture to guess they know a thing or two about making great games for today’s audience.
In the racing genre, few games outdid Burnout during the 2000s era. It embraced a staple of any good race game — bumper-to-bumper crashing — and built its entire gameplay around it. This meant for high-speed thrills and yes, a heavy dose of crashing, which went against the realism of other popular racers of the time like Gran Turismo.
We believe bringing back Burnout today would boost the entire race game genre, which is seriously lacking as of late. Think about it, outside of Rocket League, which other driving-based game is thriving right now? Few come to mind and a fun, arcade-style game such as Burnout could certainly fill the gap.