What Xbox Franchises Should Return On The Next Xbox? - Features - www.GameInformer.com
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What Xbox Franchises Should Return On The Next Xbox?

With the reveal of the next-generation Xbox less than a day away, we've chosen nearly 20  games we'd like to see come back on the console. We've picked only games that were either Xbox or Xbox 360 exclusives, or those that were best known for their presence on a Microsoft console.  

Then we asked the Game Informer editors to vote on the likelihood that each would return, to come up with a (marginally) educated guess of whether our dreams for a new installment in each franchise might come true.

Check out our list, and share your hopes for Xbox games that should come back in the comments below.

Alan Wake
Chance of Return: 35%

The supernatural horror game garnered enthusiastic fans, and the world of Alan Wake seems like it could easily support future installments. However, the franchise probably wouldn't be worked on outside of original developer Remedy, and after such a long development cycle for the original Alan Wake, the team may be ready to focus on something else. That makes a new Alan Wake a possibility, but not an especially strong one.

Banjo-Kazooie
Chance of Return: 45%

The family-friendly bear Banjo and his friend Kazooie made a splash in 2008 with Nuts & Bolts, proving that the action/platform stars could do something new after all these years. Microsoft is undoubtedly eager to make the next-gen Xbox friendly to families, but some kids just don't care too much about these two mascot-like heroes, keeping the likelihood of another installment below 50%.

Blue Dragon
Chance of Return: 5%

The excellent RPG from Mistwalker and Artoon was well loved when it released in the States in 2007. Blue Dragon followed mostly familiar Japanese RPG conventions for combat and exploration, but had some gorgeous music and art that captured the eye and ear. Nonetheless, the Xbox consoles have always had trouble gaining a foothold in Japan, and the audience in North America is limited for these types of games. Plus, a sequel came to the Nintendo DS that did not do well commercially, so the chance that Microsoft will return to this franchise is very small.

Conker
Chance of Return: 10%

The foul-mouthed squirrel got a lot of love in his day for attempting to push a more "mature" approach to character platform games, dominated by poop jokes and cursing. The franchise undoubtedly still has its vocal fans, but we can't imagine Microsoft wanting to put Conker front and center as one of the voices shaping next-gen gaming. Don't expect a sequel any time soon.

Crackdown
Chance of Return: 50%

Open-world, third-person sandbox games still garner big sales, and Crackdown is a franchise that Microsoft can claim all to itself. Next-gen tech could do a lot to play up the destruction and weaponry from earlier installments. Even so, no one would highlight Crackdown as the centerpiece for any next-gen strategy - especially after the disappointing Crackdown 2. The franchise may be left behind as Microsoft focuses on bigger, better-known properties.

Crimson Skies
Chance of Return: 20%

If the fervent dreams of longtime gamers were enough to make a game exist, then we would have had a sequel to Crimson Skies a long time ago. Unfortunately, the excellent flight game is likely to stay in our memories, as Microsoft hasn't made any moves on the property in years. Great potential for social-oriented multiplayer and an exclusive flight game on the console might be enough to bring Crimson Skies back, but we doubt it.

Dance Central
Chance of Return: 80%

Dance Central has been one of the most popular titles for Kinect, and Harmonix is the undisputed leader in the delivery of quality music games. We'd be surprised if we didn't see a new installment on the next Xbox that takes advantage of new capabilities for the next iteration of Kinect. However, any new installments should ideally come from Harmonix, so the timing may depend on that developer's availability.

Fable
Chance of Return: 90%

Developer Lionhead has seen a lot of changes and staff departures in recent years, and the recent Kinect-exclusive Fable: The Journey received poor critical and commercial response. Nonetheless, Fable has been a fixture of the Xbox lineup for years, and RPGs are still popular, so we expect another installment at some point. Will it be one of the first games announced for the new console? That's seems less likely, as Microsoft may aim to put some more space between the last installment and any new announcement.

Forza
Chance of Return: 95%

Most of our editors have no doubt that Forza is coming back; every new console aims to have a quality racing title to hang its hat on, and Microsoft has no reason to back off the successful Forza name. Plus, a pretty car game can be a great way to show off the graphical power of your new console. We predict Forza may be one of the first new games we hear about in the coming weeks.

[Next up: The only game all our editors agree will absolutely be back next generation, plus the Xbox games that should remain dead.]

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