Maybe it was your first game. Perhaps it was a random buy that became an unexpected obsession. We’ve all grown up with favorite games only to have those developers go silent, leaving an empty place in our gamer’s heart where a certain franchise used to be.
For this month’s staff feature, we collaborated to discuss games and franchises we hope will be revived. Check out this list from the Boss Rush Network’s writing team:
Donnie: Breath of Fire
Breath of Fire is one of my favorite JRPG franchises, one that is similar to the Dragon Quest games. Breath of Fire‘s setting is a fantasy world full of humans and dangerous creatures. All the games follow the same main protagonists “Ryu,” who is the last of a race of people called “The Brood,” who transform into powerful dragons. The combat is traditional turn-based and players adventure the world with party members encountering random battles.
What ever happened to Breath of Fire? There is too much potential for this franchise on current gen consoles to leave behind. The HD-2D games and remakes coming out make me feel that a Breath of Fire remake would pop! It would be worth it even to just nudge the developers of these classics forward into making new games. If you haven’t played the Breath of Fire games, you can play the first two games on the Nintendo Switch Online service. My favorite game from the franchise is Breath of Fire 3, which was originally made on the Sony PlayStation.
Stoy: Silent Hill
The Silent Hill series was one of the most influential and revolutionary horror franchises in video game history. Ask anyone what their experiences were after finishing Silent Hill 2, and they’ll likely give you a college dissertation on what the endings meant, and the psychological meanings and metaphors of every item and person in the game.
While the Silent Hill franchise might appear to be a series, it is far from it. In some titles, Silent Hill is a real place, where as in other titles it is simply a dream or a fictional place within the mind. The connecting pieces are its traditional staples: locations shrouded in fog and a demonic twist (quite literally!) in the environment that indicates something evil has erupted around the player (often changing not only the monsters encountered, but also wreaking havoc on what players can see and hear in the game).
The franchise’s last two titles, Homecoming (2008) and Downpour (2012), weren’t met with critical acclaim like its previous titles, and Konami had seemingly abandoned it until Hideo Kojima tried to resurrect it, and brought about the infamous PT demo that scared gamers stupid. It led itself to be a demo for his upcoming title Silent Hills; however, it is no longer available to download.
Fans of the series have been clamoring for Konami to get back into the gaming space and either remaster a previous title in the series or produce a new game in the series. I’d love either a complete remake of the first Silent Hill or a completely new entry in the series. The Silent Hill franchise has been one of the most prolific in video game history, and it would be a shame to let it die here. Every time the Resident Evil series gets a remake or a new title, a Silent Hill fan lets out a loud cry.
The Madpharmacist: Star Fox
When people hear Nintendo, most think of Mario, then perhaps Zelda. Kirby has seen consistent releases, and Metroid is going through a revival of sorts with the release of Metroid Dread in 2021.The last we have really seen of the Star Fox franchise was Star Fox Zero on the Wii U in 2016, and this 3-D on-rails shooter received a fairly mixed reception. And yet, despite Star Fox’s absence, Fox McCloud still appears in all the Smash Bros. iterations. To keep this IP alive, I would love for Nintendo to bring back Star Fox in any way they can.
One way, although the odds are close to none, would be a Star Fox 64 remake. Another scenario would be a brand new title that would mix traditional and new gameplay. Star Fox is primarily a shooter, and with the latest wave of popularity in the sci-fi genre, it would be fitting for Fox McCloud to return in a dark, gritty, space adventure.
Andrew: Golden Axe
With a full-fledged beat ‘em up revival happening, I’m surprised that my favorite example of the genre hasn’t been greenlit for a new entry. The main Golden Axe arcade and console games culminated in one of my all-time favorite gaming experiences: playing to the end of Golden Axe: The Revenge of Death Adder with three friends at our local arcade. It’s unbelievable to me that, at the very least, The Revenge of Death Adder hasn’t been officially re-released as a console port.
My ideal way for this series to be reborn would be for a better-than-arcade-perfect remaster collection to drop on all major platforms. Heck, here’s a title: Golden Axe: The Golden Age. The retro collection would be swiftly followed up by a brand new sequel in the vein of Streets of Rage 4 or Shredder’s Revenge.
LaMont: Mystical Ninja
The one series that I believe needs a chance to return is the Mystical Ninja franchise. I’ve always loved the games, especially The Mystical Ninja Starring Goeman and Goeman’s Great Adventure. Produced by Konami, it is also known as The Ganbare series in Japan.
I was already familiar with Goeman from playing SNES classic The Legend of the Mystical Ninja so naturally, I was excited to try out The Mystical Ninja Starring Goeman for the Nintendo 64. I loved its unique flare of action and humor with its quirky jokes and slight innuendos.
The characters are so memorable: Goeman, the hot head accompanied by his pal Ebisumaru, the strange and perverted guy also met with two more playable characters—Yae, the female ninja and Sesuke, the humanoid robot explore this huge adventure.
One of the major reasons why I loved this game was because of the music. It was the first time I experienced theme progression during each phase of a stage. The combat was simple, just whacking foes with a staff or pipe and going to shops for upgrading weapons and life was pretty cool. The best part was whenever I’d run against a huge villain, the characters would summon this huge robot named Impact! Players could control the robot, shooting laser beams and kicking or punching foes. This franchise needs to return!
David: Metroidvania-Style Aliens Games
It’s a good time to be a fan of the Aliens franchise, with fast-paced horde shooters like Aliens: Fireteam elite and the newly announced RTS Aliens: Dark Descent. But the side-scrolling action and exploration of games like Alien 3 for the SEGA Genesis and Super Nintendo will always have me feeling nostalgic. The SEGA version focused primarily on combat whereas the SNES version (which had a separate but parallel development) focused on exploration and survival through mission tasks.
The games are mostly forgotten now, but the Alien 3 games were heavily influenced by Metroid and Castlevania, two franchises with a combined impact that produced the genre known as Metroidvania. In 2011, Gearbox Software and WayForward teamed up to develop Aliens: Infestation, a bit of cult classic in this niche genre.
While I love the heart pounding action and absolute terror of the high definition modern releases (looking at you Alien: Isolation), a part of me will always love these retro-style games. Getting another one in my favorite sci-fi franchise would be cause for celebration.