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Retro Friday: Old-school games worthy of a remake

by Zaid Kriel (Zaid)  Posted Friday, January 25, 2013 11:49:00 AM

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Since the game industry hates making new stuff and insists on churning out sequels and remakes, I thought I'd weigh-in and give them some direction with what nostalgia mine they should be drilling. After all, while we might complain that about remakes, reboots and such some of them do actually come out good. XCOM: Enemy Unknown anyone?

So, if the game industry at large must do remakes and reboots, here are five old-school games I'd like them to have a crack at.

5. SYNDICATE

Admit it, that Syndicate FPS that came out last year wasn't all bad. In fact, I would rate it as a pretty good shooter that had the balls to try something new and wasn't just Call of Duty: Black Trench Coat Edition. But having said that, a Syndicate remake that echoes the spirit of the original would be most welcome. The original Syndicate games were isometric real-time tactical affairs developed by Peter Molyneux's Bullfrog Productions back in the early 90s. Like the recent shooter version, the game took place in a dystopian future where corporations are a law unto themselves. If a game like XCOM: Enemy Unknown can achieve success in this age, then I see no reason why a new Syndicate can't work either.

4. HOMEWORLD

The original Homeworld was a revelation when it released in 1999. Real-time Strategy games were a dominant genre on the PC at the time and were a dime a dozen. To stand out, Homeworld developer Relic Entertainment designed their space-based game within literal 3D space. Instead of playing on 2D plane, Homeworld allowed players to navigate in a gravity-free environment and to navigate their fleet freely in that space along all axis. So it was possible to attack your enemies from literally any direction. Hopefully a remake can take full advantage of modern tech and offer space battles on a truly massive scale. Oh and the story was pretty topnotch too.

3. LEGACY OF KAIN

The Legacy of Kain games were some phenomenal action/adventure games that stretched out from 1996 until 2003 when the last game in the series was released. The games had wonderfully dark and with an oppressive, gothic atmosphere and featured, not one, but two iconic lead characters in the form of Kain and Raziel. This series should receive a complete reboot to clean up the series continuity which started to reach X-men levels of complexity as the it progressed. Other than that, the return of Kain and Raziel would go done very nicely indeed.

2. SYSTEM SHOCK

Because I hate SHODAN so much and would love nothing more that to ruin whatever scheme she's up to now. The original System Shock games were the inspirations for the Bioshock games that have come out recently. But where those games had the player trapped in an underwater city, System Shock had the player match wits with a Rogue AI names SHODAN, while trapped in a space station and in the sequel aboard a derelict space ship. Equal parts shooter, survival horror and adventure game, System Shock was an intense experience that deserves a revisit.

1. ANY OF THE CLASSIC BEAT-'EM-UPS

I have easily spent thousands of Rands in the form of 20c pieces and Wonderland arcade tokens on side-scrolling beat-'em-ups, a genre that remains close to my heart. Since the beat-'em-up is due for a revival., want I'd like to see is a game that utilises the Batman Arkham Series combat system. If you've played the DLC Freight Train Challenge Map in Arkham City then you'll know that I mean. A Final Fight or Streets of Rage using that engine sounds like gaming heaven to me.

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Please note that the opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and not MWEB Connect (Pty) Ltd


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