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Huge video game fans (like myself) are always dwelling on the classics, and fondly remembering this character or that game. However, sometimes nostalgia isn’t enough. Here are the Top 10 Characters who need a good game to remind us that they do, in fact, still exist.
10. Crash Bandicoot: Before Kratos and Sweet Tooth bust onto the scene, Sony was lacking a marquee mascot to stand with the likes of Mario and Sonic. Things were a little weird in the ‘90s, so they pinned their hopes on a little hyperactive bandicoot named Crash. Sounds a little crazy in retrospect I know, but the early Crash games provided some solid fun, and, for many, their first real romp in a 3D space. Subsequent games have never really capitalized on that early success. But if Rayman can get an awesome reboot, I think that our little bandicoot deserves another shot.
9. Barry Burton: Everybody knows the best character in the Resident Evil mythos is Barry. Why hasn’t he starred in a game yet? He basically completed Jill’s campaign for her in the original Resident Evil, he’s not as much of a *** as Chris (you won’t see Barry try to punch a friggin’ boulder to death), and he’s obviously cooler than Leon “I spend more time on my hair than you” Kennedy. I guess it wouldn’t work, though, because I think he has a clause in his contract stating he can only move with tank controls. Alas, we missed that window…
8. John Madden: I realized a hard truth the other day: I shouldn’t have bought another Madden game after I got Madden ’95 for Christmas. They are all the same! Obviously I’m kidding a little (I do love seeing Tom Brady get sacked in HD), but it’s past time we got some real innovation from a Madden game. You know what, it doesn’t even have to be a football game. I’d like to see Tiburon branch out, maybe with a John Madden hack and slash adventure, or a Madden NFL fighting game. Who wouldn’t like to see Michael Vick summon a pack of dogs for a finisher, or Tebowing under a high attack to counter for the win?
7. Superman: This one is obvious. Our industry is at a virtual standstill right now because of our inability to create a good Superman game. Seriously, it’s like a decay on the combined brain trust of anybody who has ever contributed to making a video game. The only question is who can make it? I can’t think of any developer Rocksteady© enough to take a DC hero known for his crappy games and create a compelling and Rocksteady© video game experience with him. I’m seriously at a loss.
6. Fox McCloud: Quick, name your top three Nintendo franchises…………..done? It was probably Mario, Zelda and Metroid right? Maybe Kirby or Donkey Kong were thrown in there, hmm? Hey, remember Star Fox? A paltry dozen years ago he would have easily been in the running for that list, but now he seems destined to live in emulators and Super Smash Bros. I want a good Star Fox game! Make that happen Miyamoto, he deserves it.
5. Peach: I love Mario, but I am sick and tired of rescuing the princess. It’s not a problem of motivation or repetition, I’m just not sure she deserves it. I want to see a game with her as the main character, and maybe see some of the sacrifices she makes to be with her valiant (overweight) hero (plumber). And then I want to know what exactly compelled a royal princess to hook up with some random overweight (valiant) plumber (hero). Maybe she has a thing for foreign guys? Whatever, as long as she can float.
4. Sonic: Tell me if you’ve hears this one before: Guy walks into a video game store. He says to a employee “Give me a Sonic game that wasn’t on the Genesis.” The employee turns, and punches him in the face. Well, my boss didn’t think it was funny, but that guy didn’t walk out of there with Sonic Unleashed, so I consider it a win. But come on, is it really that hard to make a superfast blue hedgehog that can kill anything with a touch into awesome video game material with next-gen technology? Apparently so. A bit of good news however, as Sonic won’t be returning to the Olympics for at least another two years.
3. A Good Final Fantasy Character: Remember those? Nah, probably not. They only existed before your PlayStation had a number next to it. Lightning was O.K. and everything, but no one is heralding Final Fantasy XIII as the next War and Peace you know? Story is such a major component of a good RPG, at least in my mind, and I’m pretty sure XIII’s was written by a 12-year-old. If you want me to keep considering Final Fantasy THE marquee ROG, help me out here Square. Good characters + good antagonist + good conflict = good game! I know you know how to do math!
2. Samus: Super Metroid is one of my favorite games of all time, which is why I openly weeped while playing Metroid: Other M. Oh, how the mighty have fallen. Metroid is as venerable a franchise as Mario or The Legend of Zelda, so why do they only spend like twelve bucks making it? It’s time for Samus to go back to her roots and come out with a game she can be proud of. The formula is there, people already love Metroid, so I don’t see what Nintendo’s problem is here.
1. Mega Man: When your best (and only) games out lately are based directly off of your NES ancestor, maybe it’s time for an upgrade. Just the thought of an all new Mega Man game in HD, perhaps in the X series, gets my blood pumping something fierce. I can already feel the tingle of excitement at the thought of taking down maverick robots and turning their own abilities against each other. However, with the sad cancellation of Mage Man Universe and Mega Man Legends 3, it appears I’ll just have to content myself with Mega Man 3…again.