There are some franchises that you literally hope disappear from history and never attempt to clod up your screen ever again. You hate them, they hate you, and they deserve to vanish. But there are also games that you cherish that maybe had one or two entries and then suddenly went away without a reason or a whisper goodbye. For me, there are quite a few that I honestly wish would get some kind of remake or just another go at it. Here are my top picks:
1. Earthworm Jim
This one holds a special place in my heart for both of its entries as well as the old cartoon. Yes, I’m that old that I remember the Earthworm Jim cartoon. This game was all over the place with imagination and comical uses of gross designs. It was a platformer and it was a run-and-gun shooter and at one point you’re holding a giant marshmallow running back and forth to bounce Peter Puppy’s puppies to safety while an evil villain attempts to toss them to their deaths. They experimented a lot with crazy gameplay and it always struck me as fun and unique in a challenging way. I’ll never forget the level in EWJ-2 entitled, “Jim’s Now A Blind Cave Salamander” in which you become a blind cave salamander and float about while dodging things to the tune of Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata. This is a series that would thrive the way that indie games are now on PSN and would make a killing since games like Super Meat Boy owe a lot of their humor and flavor to our man Jim.
2. King of Fighters: Maximum Impact
As a long time fighting game enthusiast from the earliest days, this one came out of left field and surprised me. The jump from 2D to 3D was not kind to fighters, but this one finally got it right. KOF kept the same move-sets that made the game popular and only added a side-step feature. You could dodge a move, but it would revert immediately back to a single linear plane. It was subtle and it was brilliant and they even took the time to introduce new characters with actual storylines and an over-arching plot that actually had CGI cut-scenes like the gave a damn. Color me impressed SNK and thank you for giving Terry his brown jacket from Garou Mark of the Wolves even if he was a separate character. I’ll take it.
3. Bushido Blade
Oh now this one needs a remake. Imagine current gen capabilities in rendering like the latest Mortal Kombat, but instead of fast-paced bludgeoning you have intense standoffs with realistic samurai whose slightest move could end your life. Bushido Blade was one of the most interesting fighting games in that it wasn’t about mashing buttons or memorizing crazy combos. It was about skill and anticipating your enemy’s moves, because literally one hit could kill you. But it could kill them too. I’d like to see this one done over with the best tech we’ve got—better yet—let’s do it in Virtual Reality.
ClayFighter has a special place in my heart in that it was absurd, silly, and downright funny. On top of that, it was a solid fighter for casual players that offered some ridiculous characters to choose from. This one is kid friendly too, so even the Wii U could benefit from a new release. I’d like to see some more fighters and some crazy imagination gone wild, but honestly I would check out this game just for the sheer fact that I can fight as a pissed off snowman or an angry banana man. That’s just something we should all cherish.
I’m surprised this one didn’t make it into the Xbox lineup to be honest. MDK was a solid PC game that showcased shooting and platforming in a 3D space that also included paragliding. Not much to hate there. Add to it the futuristic, Matrix-like, setting and you’ve got yourself a cult hit. A 3rd game was supposedly planned, but never made it out. I’d like to see this one come back as a Microsoft exclusive to make all those X-Bone fans happy with the fact that it’s all theirs and that it’s all good. MDK would be gorgeous in the Unreal Engine and some solid voice acting could seriously bring a hit.
Those are my picks for games that need to have remakes or just new releases. If you’ve got your own favorites that you want to see again in HD, then hit me up on Twiter @RAT_FOX or tell me in the comments. Cheers!