Sometimes video games that shouldn’t be made are, and almost as often games that should be aren’t. In an era of gaming dominated by modern war, WWII, Gears of Halos and movie tie-ins there are plenty of genre’s, eras and even properties that would make for great games being completely overlooked (or in some cases half-assed). Which is why we’ve put together a wish list of games that we think would rock, that is if they were done right.
The American Revolution
If there is an FPS about the American Revolution, it hasn’t gotten much attention. The war for American independence has gotten several RTS style treatments, and there was at one time a rumor that there was going to be a Call of Duty game based on the Revolutionary War; but so far nothing. Opponents of the idea are likely to point out that Revolutionary weapons were single shot rifles with long re-load times that were horribly inaccurate compared to modern weapons, not to mention that war was fought by standing in a line; it would be hard to make a fun game from that situatoin and it is a fair argument. The game couldn’t be Modern Warfare with white wigs everywhere; it would take some inventive thinking to make the game not only work but stay fresh. The fact is that the Revolutionary War had enough guerilla warfare in it, combined with some of the biggest personalities in history to make for a compelling and fun gaming experience. C’mon EA or Activision, let’s get it done!
The only sport related game to make the list; no one can deny that Lacrosse is definitely underrepresented in gaming. The College Lacrosse series on the XBLIG channel has proven that there is a demand for it, and considering that two of CBR’s staff members have played Lacrosse themselves it had to make our list. It may not be the most popular sport around the country, but Lacrosse deserves to get the same big deal treatment other sports have gotten. If nothing else to shut the Lacrosse players around the country up, but also because it may help to enlighten a whole new group of people on a sport growing in popularity.
World War I
World War I is the middle-child war in American history. Sandwiched between the Civil War and WWII, it sometimes seems insignificant or merely a precursor to WWII. Combined with the ultimate personification of bad guys (Nazis), WWII does seem to get all the attention. What is most peculiar though is that at one time a fair amount of WWI games were being produced, but in recent years have completely gone the way of the dinosaur or those spiked German helmets. We think it’s time for WWI to make a comeback. The weapons and style of warfare is different enough from WWII that it would make for a different experience and there is no shortage of historical information (including several different countries’ point of view) to base it on. The main reason we think this should happen? Because some of the best parts of The Darkness were the WWI levels mostly.
So technically there has been an FPS based on Starship Troopers made back in 2000, but this is one intellectual property that should make for a great game and just simply hasn’t. While it is doubtful that a game will be made so many years after the movie that would of spawned it, and the film’s various sequels have failed to impress, there is some hope that with an upcoming feature length computer animated film in the works that interest will increase. There really is no reason why a Starship Troopers FPS couldn’t be a blast, and gaming technology is finally up to a point that it can really handle the sheer numbers of Arachnids and Mobile Infantry on screen at one time that would be needed to do it right. After all, Aliens seems to finally be getting the game it deserves after all these years in the form of Colonial Marines, and we can’t help but think that Gearbox could really knock this out of the park and make it an amazing co-op experience to boot. Bring back some of the original cast to voice characters (even if you aren’t playing them) and take a story somewhere between the film, the book and The Roughnecks animated series and you are looking at an instant classic in the hands of the right developer.
There have been plenty of games about ancient Rome, but most, if not all of them have been RTS games; we want to see something in the way of a third-person adventure. There are few historical times that say drama more than the incidents revolving around the end of the Roman Republic and the beginning of the Empire, and while this era has been somewhat over saturated in film and TV, the popularity of shows such as HBO’s Rome and Starz’ Sparticus show that the audience is there and it isn’t exactly like the period is known for its’ lack of violence. Whether placing the player in one of Rome’s countless wars, having the player take part of the epic tale mentioned above or some combination of the two the game would have tremendous potential; so long as it doesn’t go all Prince of Persia or God of War on the subject matter. To that end, the story of Sparticus itself could make for one truly epic gaming experience.
If you weren’t a kid during the 90’s you may have no idea what Animorphs is, and you will never be complete as a result. Animorphs was a series of young adult books about a group of kids given the power to temporarily transform into any animal that they touch by a dieing alien; a power they use to fight a secret war against an alien parasitic slug like species that takes control of its host (in this case humans) by actually entering the brain and taking over. The cast of characters, story and of course the ability to transform into various animals could make for a fantastic game. This one-time children’s book series could make for a rather adult gaming experience. Now, there were a couple of games made around for GBA, Playstation and PC (around the same time) but these all failed to really work with the IP. Animorphs almost entirely took place in one city of descent size, meaning that this would possibly best be done in a sandbox (or sandbox-esque) style, with various missions and quest available as the story progresses and the real possibility that any NPC you see is an enemy in disguise; an Animorphs game made by fans of the series would have real potential. Imagine just the sheer fun that could be had by finding every available animal and exploring the world in the various forms.
Sonic and Mario Together
Once rivals, Sonic and Mario tend to get along these days; even engaging in the occasional sporting event together. Its time for the two of them to take their relationship to the next level though. Imagine Mario making his way through Sonic inspired levels and Sonic ripping through Mario inspired levels. Sonic taking on Bowser? Mario taking on Dr. Robotnik? Yes please! Even though the two-mega characters are as likely to have a crossover as God of War and Gears of War, the potential for greatness is there. Recent editions in both franchises (Sonic Generations, Super Mario 3D Land) show that they are both still viable and fun to play, and the combination of the two characters into one story actually seems more natural than it probably should. It could end up being a lame cross over like The Jetsons meet The Flintstones, but we say, lets do it… but probably let Nintendo make it.
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
Hitchhiker’s may not have translated perfectly to film, but that was largely due to trying to cram in too much at one time, something not nearly as big of an issue in the video game format. While Douglas Adams’ classic series of books may not always be big on action, what is more epic than a quest for the ultimate answer (or question)? Considering that Hitchhiker’s was once translated into a text based computer game ages ago, it clearly can be done. A third person action adventure could work, but we can’t help but think that this is the type of odd, what exactly should we do with this and how should we make a game out of it IP that TellTale lives for.
The Spanish Conquistadors
Talk about a topic completely untouched by gaming. Three, highly scientific, Google searches produced nothing in the way of a long lost or little known game about the Conquistadors’ brutal campaign in the America’s; this should change. While an RTS could work, a third person experience that switched from fighting hoards of natives to stalking Spanish invaders through the jungles of South America would probably be best. Any developer willing to take the time to carefully walk the line that comes from making the act of slaughtering natives fun could really stumble onto some gold here, and not just gold looted from Aztec vaults either. It’d be a challenge to do right, but most things worth doing are.
Rounding out our list of games we want to see (or see done right) is Stargate. The original movie was great, but the real gaming experience would come from the cannon created in either SG-1 or Atlantis. Stargate has recently gotten the gaming treatment in something resembling Quake Wars/Battlefront that was mostly a bust and is being shut down (or has already been shut down). Plans for an MMO game have also been cancelled. Truth be told, neither of these formats really captures what works about Stargate and that is the action combined with the story. Make an FPS game set in the series universe where an SG team takes part in a story arc dealing with a new enemy or even picking up on the unfinished Lucian Alliance story from SG-1/SGU and you’ll have something golden. Especially if some of the various series talent makes cameos, or is even directly involved in the story. Treat it almost like a new season/spin-off in terms of story, but drop the viewer into the driver seat and this game will fly off the shelves so fast it’ll almost be like there was a direct wormhole between the game and consumers wallets. Especially these days as the unfortunate cancellation of Stargate Universe has left the world without new Stargate for the first time in 14 years!
So that’s it, our list of ten games that we would like to see (or simply see done right). An odd assortment of concepts that are horribly underrepresented in gaming and franchises that just haven’t been (or haven’t been properly) turned into good video games. In a world of yearly, nearly unchanged Call of Duty games and never ending sequels, we think some of these ideas would not only be fun to play but would provide something a little different than what we’ve all grown so used to.
What are your thoughts? Is there something you’ve always wished would be turned into a video game? Think we are totally and completely wrong about something on our list? Let us know in the comments below!