Old School = Cool (Mania.com)

By:Troy Roberts
Date: Friday, February 07, 2003

It seems that what was once cool is cool again. The retro "genre" seems to be the newest fad in the gaming industry right now. If you really stop and take a look at all of the games that were released in the late 80s or early 90s, you'll notice a developing trend: nearly any game made can be remade today.


Is it a lack of originality on the part of the gaming companies? I seriously doubt it, but I'm sure it does lighten the load on some of them when they can look back about 20 years in the company files and say "Hey, does everyone remember this game? Why don't we make a new one?" And thus it starts.


Let's take a look at what we've seen lately. The new SHINOBI for the Playstation 2 turned out okay, but the game plays a lot like a 3D version of the 2D game (lots of cheap deaths and such). Obviously there are the new METAL GEAR SOLID games, all of which have turned out great in my opinion, and SONIC and MARIO will go on forever. The list goes on.


But then you have some other games. I personally thought TOE JAM AND EARL III wasn't terrible, but most people did; in all likelihood, no one remembered the old Genesis game. I didn't particularly care for the latest STAR FOX game either. And 2001's SPY HUNTER wasn't that good, neither was the recently released DEFENDER.


I'm not against remakes or newer incarnations of classic games. But what are we going to see next? Will it be an Xbox version of KID ICARUS? Or will it be the newest game in the STREETS OF RAGE series? Who knows what these companies will come up with next (and my two examples being Sega products is nothing demeaning towards Sega...those were just two games I could come up with on a whim). God knows nobody wants to see a new ETERNAL CHAMPIONS.


Will it end? To me it is doubtful. Like a lot of other gamers, I have a sweet spot for older games and remakes of them just push the right buttons; I feel like I need to buy those games immediately. So I guess as long as there are franchises not being used and retro games are still selling, don't be surprised if you see a new version of your favorite SNES game on shelves soon.


TIDBITS



Apparently Microsoft has issued a worldwide recall of the fighter KAKUTO CHOJIN because of offensive religious inferences made during the game...Sunstorm Interactive, responsible for the DEER HUNTER series, has closed...LucasArts has delayed some of its features in the upcoming STAR WARS GALAXIES, namely player-owned cities, vehicles and Dark Jedi...


ON SHELVES

SHINOBI



Look for COMMAND AND CONQUER GENERALS in stores on the 11th, and look for my review shortly thereafter.


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