Some game franchises have been around for ages, but have managed to keep their games up to date, entertaining, and innovative – then there are those that are just living off of ole time glory. Following are 10 video game series that really need to die off.
1. Sonic the Hedgehog
In the early 90’s Sonic the Hedgehog hit the platform video game scene and was paired against Mario (of Super Mario Bros. fame) in the early battles of Nintendo/SEGA fan-boyism. Despite the loss of the SEGA video game console platform – post SEGA Dreamcast – Sonic and pals have managed to continue making fighting, racing, platform, sports, and pretty much any video game genre there is – even jumping ship to the Nintendo platform and paring up with Mario.
Though Sonic’s survival skills are bar-none, Sonic the Hedgehog is far past his prime and living off of his early 90’s SEGA Genesis fame. Just looking at the Sonic the Hedgehog 4 gameplay – 16 years after Sonic the Hedgehog 3 – it’s sad to see Sonic the Hedgehog try to keep up in a Mario Brothers world.
As an early Bomberman fan, it’s hard to say, but it’s about time to put Bomberman out of his misery. Bomberman hit the scene in 1983 and the gameplay hasn’t changed since (27 years of the same game). Other than updated graphics and online gameplay, the Bomberman video game franchise hasn’t tried to keep up with the times at all. It’s still fun to trap and bomb the heck out of competitors, but another Bomberman game isn’t necessary.
3. Spyro the Dragon
Spyro is the little dragon that could. Released in 1999, when cute purple reptiles were in popular demand [nods at Barney the dinosaur], Spyro the Dragon found a home on the original PlayStation video game console and was considered a major franchise for our good friends over at Sony. Unfortunately, most of the children that grew up loving Spyro have grown up, and today’s kids aren’t really going for the franchise.
4. Crash Bandicoot
In the mid 90s, Crash Bandicoot was Sony’s answer to Mario and Sonic the Hedgehog; providing a mascot for the Sony PlayStation video game console, spanning over 16 games and selling over 40 million copies worldwide. In the 14 year life-span of Crash Bandicoot, Crash is still barely hanging on the coat-tails of Sonic and Mario – copying just about every game type Sonic or Mario dishes out. Overshadowed by Sonic, Mario, and Sack Boy (of Little Big Planet fame), Crash Bandicoot’s popularity has crashed and burned over the last decade.
Over the last decade and a half, the Pokemon video game series has seen massive success and has been features on many platforms including card games, video games on multiple platforms, films, and lots of cute Pokémon plushies. Even though I admittedly buy every Pokémon game that hits gaming shelves, due to the lack of innovation and basic addition of a few new Poke monsters here and there, I can’t help but feel that gamers are being robbed and just buying the same game over and over again.
6. Guitar Hero/Rock Band
Hitting the video game scene only 5 short years ago, Guitar Hero and – two years later – Rock Band have created a new genre in and of themselves – Music Video games. The Guitar Hero and Rock Band video game series, while enjoyable, has been reduced to downloaded songs and track packs instead. Instead of going to buy a new Rock Band or Guitar Hero video game, gamers find themselves buying new songs to play the same ol’ game with. Though Guitar Hero and Rock Band are the youngest game series in this list, these two game franchises are nearing their peak – and possible demise – unless they start to bring something new to the gaming scene.
7. Harvest Moon
Harvest Moon – like Pokémon and Bomberman – is a game that never gets old – which leads one to beg the question; why keep creating new ones? Farming, love, and tending to animals has been the staple of the Harvest Moon video game series since its mid-90s release and the folks over at Natsume have been selling the exact same game for the last decade and a half. The story, gameplay, and characters in Harvest Moon stay the same in each game, but the Harvest Moon series has managed to get weaker over the ages due to horrible camera angles and the added difficulty of farming due to third party 3D controller configurations.
8. Grand Theft Auto
Is it me, or does buying a new Grand Theft Auto game make you feel as though you were buying Grand Theft Auto 3 all over again? Grand Theft Auto has been dubbed the most controversial game of all times, but it’s also another case of serious recycle ware. GTA III, Vice City, San Andreas, GTA IV, and Gay Tony are all pretty much the same game starring different protagonists (antagonists, depending on how you play the game). Each game provides has its own shtick and tongue-in-cheek humor, but the while playing the game, you’ll likely kill hookers and beat up innocent people which hasn’t changed since GTA III.
9. Mortal Kombat
Before 3D animated video games Mortal Kombat was thee-bomb. Mortal Kombat introduced special death moves, blood, secret levels, mini-games, and a butt-load of other things to beat-em-up games and had lots of arcade fans going quarter bankrupt in the early 90s. Every Mortal Kombat game brought new moves, characters, and surprises up until Mortal Kombat 3 – which debuted in 1995. After MK3 the Mortal Kombat video game series has gone down the crapper (imo). Due to its smash success in the early 90s, Mortal Kombat is still the first thing that comes to mind when thinking of beat-em-up games, but MK games have been milked of all of their glory and it’s time to add the MK series to the gaming hall of fame and let it rest in peace.
For more read 10 Video Games We Keep Buying, but Haven’t Changed in Eons, 5 Most Pointless Wii Games Based on a Single Gimmick, and 5 Worst Nintendo Wii Games You’ll Be Tricked into Buying.
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