Let’s Try That Again: Reboots

Franchise reboots seem to be a big thing lately.  Batman got a reboot, Spider-man just got one, and while I was sitting here, planning to put off work for another day, I happened to catch the trailer to the bright, flashy, and 100% more Irish reboot of Total Recall that’ll be releasing soon.


Also, Kuato will be played by Peter Dinklage (We wish).


The same trend has also been happening in games.  After all, there are plenty of franchises where a developer screws up, teams get house-cleaned, and someone in the company decides they start wanting to make money off a “safe” game series again.  It worked for Mortal Kombat, it worked for Twisted Metal (kinda), and they’re trying to do it with Tomb Raider next year.

This is all well and good, but I get the feeling there are some franchises that I feel are more deserving of a second look.  Here’s a few games I feel could stand to get a fresh start.

Tekken:  A fighting game series near and dear to my heart.  As of late the plot has become a million crazy threads of ridiculous character relationships, a malevolent god representing evil (or whatever the hell Azazel is), a seemingly villainous protagonist, and a family of douchebags (Mishimas) that are the only people to have real plot relevance.

The Reboot: Paul Phoenix, the greatest martial artist in the world enters a martial arts tournament to pay off the expenses on his new motorcycle.  He tears his way through the tournament, fighting a colorful cast of characters including a disco dancer, several small Asian girls, and a schizophrenic in a Jaguar mask.  The final battle is with an army of Korean pop idols formed from the DNA of the former tournament winner, Hwoarang.  Along the way, buttons are mashed, faces are punched, and Mishimas are ignored.


Those Koreans have vicious okizeme.


Resident Evil:  Largely credited with creating and/or popularizing the survival horror genre, Resident Evil is now all about ridiculously trained super-soldiers with John Woo sensibilities to their gunplay unleashing two-fisted fiery hell upon poor, innocent zombies, thereby releasing tension from what used to be something that was a little bit scary.

The Reboot:  Claire Redfield, Journalism major and avid horror movie blogger currently attending RCC (Raccoon Community College), is at a campus kegger when a batch of T-virus is released (Umbrella was contracting professors to unwittingly research the virus).  Now Claire and a misfit band of terrified college students must escape the city, despite having no training, little physical ability, and their only weaponry being strong political views and a mild grasp of rhetoric.  Along the way, guns are scarce, zombies are plentiful, and pants are soiled.

Monster Hunter:  A relatively Japan-centered game franchise where you kill giant monsters and dragons, then build new weapons out of their body parts to kill other giant monsters and dragons.  Hasn’t managed to get that much purchase stateside because of a game style that’s unforgiving and mechanics that don’t change much from installment to installment.

The Reboot:  In 2050, the world is overrun by bio-mechanical “Wyverns” created by unchecked nanomechanical research and a floundering sense of ethics in the scientific community.  You’re a rookie hunter tasked with making the world a safer place by destroying these monstrosities, and you do so by making new weapons out of the bodies of your quarry.  Along the way, horns and scales are harvested, the future is undecided, and the game is released in America on a console other than a damn handheld.


Pretty please, Capcom?


Go Big or Go Home: The Nintendo 3DS XL and Handheld Redesigns

Before I get started here, I’d like to apologize for this slip in schedule.  Celebrating the 4th of July in a drunken haze, then having my power get knocked out by a freak thunderstorm has put a damper on my writing.  But I’m back now, so…yeah.

So the 3DS is getting a new version.  As to be expected, considering the track record of Nintendo’s (and Sony’s, while we’re at it) previous handhelds.  I’m certainly confused by the choice.  Considering the 3DS is meant to be an easily carried console, why exactly is a sound idea to make the thing 90% bigger?


Pictured:  Progress.


But again, it isn’t like this is unprecedented.  The DS alone had four redesigns (if we count the DSI line).  Sony got in on the act, too, with the PSP (1000 through 3000, and the ill-adviced Go).  I actually avoided buying a 3DS from the outset because I was waiting to see what redesigns I’d be faced with.  Even now I’m still waiting to see if we get a Nintendo 3DS Super Turbo Championship Edition next year.

What’s wrong with giving us multiple versions, or all the features from the outset, and letting the consumer choose?  I purchased a Vita (through some opportunistic trading and spare cash), and I just realized yesterday that the damn thing lacks an anti-glare screen.  The anti-glare screen was a feature added in specifically in the 3000 model of the PSP, because hey; a person might be playing on car trips. Where there’s sun like, everywhere.


How long has THAT been there?


I think I’m about done buying handhelds.  Next time I’ll just lug a generator, an Xbox, and ten gallons of gasoline around with me, to get one up on the developers.

Or read a book.