It’s hard not to feel nostalgic about certain video games as they have shaped who I am today. The joy of playing Outrun in the arcade, the first time I played street fighter 2 on the Super Nintendo, Cool Boarders on the Playstation, Mario 64 on the N64 and so on. In most cases however, trying to replay some of these old titles leaves you wanting more. With this in mind I have compiled ten retro remakes I would love to see rebooted:
New Zealand Story
A totally random but classic game that rocked the arcades AND the home computer market in the late 80’s and early 90’s. You play a lone kiwi bird attempting to save your kiwi brethren from an evil sack wielding seal. The game is totally bonkers as you run, jump and fly through level after level of aborigines, cats, flying whales, robots and a myriad of weird and wonderful creatures. The game is still fun after all these years and and despite an attempt to ‘refresh’ it on the Nintendo DS, this character has been pretty much left alone for the last 20 years.
The Dizzy games are some of my fondest memories of gaming in the 80’s. I loved exploring, fetching and gathering and watching the simple story unfold. After a license issue between the Oliver Twins and Codemasters, Dizzy took a 20 year break until Dizzy and the Prince of the Yolkfolk was recently released as an HD remake and whilst it was good, fans yearned for more. Those same fans got all excited when the Oliver Twins appeared on Kickstarter trying to bring Dizzy back but despite their best efforts they could not raise the £350,000 they wanted. But one day Dizzy, you will be back, even if I have to do it myself.
Rockstar ate my Hamster
This game is unlikely to ever get a remake due to modern licensing laws, as I don’t think developers could get away with singers such as Mad Donna, Bill Collins, Wacko Jacko, Mince, By George and the awesome Meat Head. This band management game saw you make various choices to get your band live gigs, make albums, shoot videos and attempt to earn 4 Gold Discs.
Rocky Horror Picture Show
What other game sees the hero get stripped naked and left to roam a house wearing nothing but underwear. For that reason alone, this game needs a remake. Whether your a fan of the movie or the stage show this was a fun little adventure that saw the protagonist search Frankenfurter’s mansion looking for pieces of his machine.
Initially created to be a parody of the classic shooter Gradius this game shot to fame due to its off the wall characters, wacky boss fights and frantic action. This game has been released on so many platforms and it still is a full to play to this day. A modern remake would see the same frantic action mixed with the wild imaginations of today’s designers.
The Blues Brothers
This surprise hit was created back in the days when movie-licensed games were actually pretty good. Batman, Addams Family and Blues Brothers were three games that took the characters and premise of the and then made a full game with them in it with little or no regard for the film’s narrative. Blues Brothers saw you collecting records in a fantastic action platformer that balanced exciting levels with simple puzzles.
Rock and Roll Racing
Whilst researching this I was lucky enough to discover that a remake is due at the end of this year! You can view the video on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yiFOhqPEI6g). This isometric racer had a great soundtrack, great commentator and an array of beefy death machines from across the galaxy. Many clones have appeared over the years but it would be great to bring back the original.
Chase HQ was like Miami Vice the game and has the player tackle five levels to take down their respective crook. The first part of the game was a race where you attempt to catch up with the villain through some awesome driving. Once you have caught up to the offender it became ‘take down’ time and you have to ram them enough times to arrest them. This was an arcade classic and saw various ports but like many games created in the 90’s they have been left alone for almost 20 years. It’s time to dust off the Porche 944 (i think) and take to the streets.
Wing commander 3
Ranked as the 54th best game of all time by Computer Gaming World this action-packed space opera see you flight off hordes of spaceships piloted by an alien race that bears a striking resemblance to lions. The live-action cut scenes were a joy to watch as you could direct the action using some simple decision-making mechanics similar to that used by Mass Effect. The games utilized the acting talents of Mark Hamill as Col. Christopher Blair, Malcolm McDowell as Admiral Tolwyn and John Rhys-Davies as as James “Paladin” Taggart among others. The series has enjoyed over 12 games and sequels with the most recent being Wing Commander Arena of Xbox Live arcade but after the forth iteration it lost its way. It would be great for the series to be rebooted and see the Kilrathi come back for another outing.
Road Rash took the gaming world by storm back in the early nineties spawning different versions and sequels on various platforms, including the ill-fated Panasonic 3DO. Despite have sequels appear on both the Playstation and the Nintendo 64, there has not been a Road Rash game for over 15 years. I am not the only one who believes that Road Rash deserves a reboot however, as a recently funded Kickstarter project called Road Redemption has been funded and promises to be the spiritual successor to Road Rash. Check out the Kickstarter project at http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/darkseasgames/road-redemption