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Sequels to classic games

posted on May 8th, 2007 by christian

Let’s talk about game sequels, specifically two sequels to two high profile games. The first is Fallout 3, which has been the subject of quite a few official announcements as of late to go along with all of the speculation. The second is the possible, but not confirmed Starcraft sequel, which may be an MMORPG. These two franchises have a lot in common: they’re both considered the pinnacle of their genres on the PC, they both get played constantly despite their increasing age, and they both have diehard fans that know exactly what they want in a sequel and will kill you if their demands aren’t met.

On one hand, Starcraft and Fallout fans can be a little more than annoying. For every good idea there is the equivalent of a Japanese Dragon Quest fan who wants nothing to change. I think about their perfect sequel, and wonder just how different it would be from the original.

And yet if I had to choose a side, I’d ally myself with these folks over the developers any day of the week. I simply don’t trust Blizzard or Bethesda at all. Considering all the time and effort put into the Oblivion engine, I’d be shocked at this point if Fallout 3 isn’t “The Elder Scrolls with guns”, which you’d be hard pressed to convince me would actually be a good thing. Also, this is the HD-era; who in their right mind is going to want to play a top down isometric RPG . As for Starcraft, there’s no reason why it should become an MMO. While Warcraft 3’s hero system was a smart segue into WOW, Starcraft was always about the strategy, pure and simple. But then you throw in that delightful thing called money that both Blizzard and Vivendi have been earning from WOW, and I very much agree with the point made by a friendly 1up user in a blog comment; it’d be shocking if Vivendi ever lets them make a non MMOG again.

The fans aren’t always right, but dammit they’ve still got the heart. Meanwhile some very good sequels may be going to waste for the love of money. Did anyone in the development community not see Deus Ex: Invisible War?

Oh wait: yes, they did. And it sold better. Dammit!

6 Comments

  1. chris said on May 8, 2007:

    Yes, but at this point I doubt a Deus Ex 3 would sell nearly as well, because Deus Ex IW was mostly a cash-in on how good Deus Ex was.

    I *do* trust Blizzard to some extent, though. I wasn’t a fan of WC3 normal mode at first, but I now acknowledge it is better than Warcraft 2, though not better than Starcraft. If Blizzard announces it as a Strategy game, all will be well. If not, then they can look forward to not getting my money.

    Blizzard has to have realized by now that Starcraft is still a big seller locally and overseas. It’s still in a lot of stores despite its age. A real sequel might not rake in as much cash overall as WoW, but also wouldn’t require the incessant maintenance that WoW does.

    No trust for Bethesda yet, though. SPECIAL was indeed something special and a Fallout game in the Oblivion engine would be… well, yeah, Elder Scrolls with guns. Fallout needs a more traditional (re: turn-based or at least not action-RPG) system in my opinion.

  2. Matt said on May 8, 2007:

    Yeah, it seems Blizzard is about to pull the pin on the grenade with StarCraft 2. People swear by the first game, and there ‘s no way in hell the sequel will live up to expectations, RTS or not. First, the RTS genre has advanced a lot since the game was first released, like what, 10 years ago? It may have only been good because of the time it came out. It can try something new, which I think is the best bet, but then you may run into the problem of actually getting the game to run on PC’s that aren’t $4,000, especially considering that most gamers now want something that can only run on the best PC’s. I think Blizzard stayed away from the franchise for far too long, and nothing can top the first. And yes, I agree with chris, why make a non-MMO to begin with when they make so much more money with games like WoW? I don’t know Blizzard that much, so I don’t know if they have enough integrity to do what’s right for the franchise. And hasn’t enough people from the first dev group left Blizzard by now? I doubt there’s anyone left that could continue the legacy truthfully. So, after my incessant rambling, my bet is it’s a new style MMO – possibly with RTS mechanics, but it’s still all about the social interaction. Money rules all, but with a franchise like StarCraft, they have to make sure it caters to some of the old fans. I’m sure the Koreans are waiting to send off their nuclear arms the moment they hear the bad news on this one.

  3. Dan said on May 9, 2007:

    Starcraft is the second best selling PC game of all time, next to only the Sims. Surely, there is money to be made by not screwing up a great formula. Maybe Starcraft 2 first, Starcraft MMO second? It worked really well for Warcraft right?

    Side Note: if Blizzard doesn’t make a RTS with the Xel Naga (or at least a protoss/zerg hybrid) as a playable race, I will write a VERY strongly worded e-mail to them.

  4. Matt said on May 9, 2007:

    Oppps, I referenced Chris when I meant to say Christian in my first post. My bad.

  5. christian said on May 9, 2007:

    I think we all will Dan

  6. staticneuron said on May 10, 2007:

    I have stopped playing RTS’s in years. I do not feel them appealing anymore. But I swear if starcraft came out tommorow I would be the first in line to get it.

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