It seems like everything is getting a reboot these days, from superheroes to Jumanji to Bonkers.
But they’re getting it all wrong. Why waste time remaking a perfect movie, like Dirty Dancing, when there are oodles of old-school games that would make for killer titles on next-gen consoles?
These games were possibly cool, or maybe actually not that fun to play, but as reboots would make for blockbuster titles in the modern age.
Here are some classic games that video-game studios really should be considering for a reboot.
In 1993, this was the most hotly anticipated fighting game to come out for the Sega Genesis. Well, at least for me it was.
Eternal Champions tells the tale of a tournament organized by, you guessed it, the Eternal Champion.
He has gathered the greatest champions from across time, just before their deaths, to compete for the ultimate prize: the ability to return to their life—and instead of dying, live.
The original gameplay was so-so, but what made this game so fun was the ability to pick archetypes from across the spectrum, from a caveman to a noir detective to a Wesley Snipes-looking dude named BLADE (hmmmmm…).
It also introduced the concept of different finishes depending on what level you’re on— the kind of interactivity with stages that we now see across many fighting games (e.g., Injustice 2, Dragon Ball FighterZ).
Imagine these characters (likely minus the litigation pit of BLADE) on a next-gen console and the stage interactions that could be played up.
The concept is ripe for revisiting, and frankly, it’s somewhat shocking Sega hasn’t done so yet.
Pick a buff dude (the Barbarian), a ripped girl (the Amazon), or a dwarf (the Dwarf), and go cut up some monsters. Oh, and pick up some potions and crap on the way.
Released in 1989, this Sega-powered arcade game (and later on the Genesis) truly blew my mind when I first played it. The animations were revolutionary, and, I mean, you got to just swing at stuff with a frickin’ sword!
This side-scrolling action game set the stage for action RPGs to come, so why not go back to the simple formula that made it work in the first place? No need for complicated storylines, just update the combat engine, the graphics, and maybe a few more generic characters to choose from.
The heart and soul of this game was in its simplicity and embracement of all things D&D (except legally not D&D).
The final villain, the Death Adder, kills relatives of the heroes, and they want some damn revenge.
Oh, and you can RIDE ON A DRAGON.
The time is waaaaay past to bring this franchise back.
Fine, I played a lot of Sega games. But c’mon, it’s a game where you fight monsters and transform into a werewolf, a weredragon, a werebear, a weretiger, or the ultimately powerful GOLDEN WEREWOLF.
I mean, a weredragon. Why is that not more of a thing?
Not to mention, you’re brought back from the dead to help Zeus save his daughter. The plot is already there with minimal tweaks needed.
It’s a simple action game: you can punch, kick, and jump and that pretty much covers it. Ingesting glowing spirit orbs gets you buffer and buffer and eventually turns you into one of the were-creatures mentioned above.
And the bosses include a double-headed wolf and some kind of demon that regenerates his head and throws it at you constantly — just imagine what these monsters would look like in Ultra HD.
You may recall this thing called the Cold War where everyone wondered at any second if they would get nuked by Russia. They also watched the movie Russkies a lot. Good thing that’s all resolved now!
Thus was born the arcade and Atari classic, Missile Command, where you get to live out your fantasies of defending cities from those dreaded commie warheads.
Or, more likely, you fail and millions of people die.
Missile Command was one of the first games where I remember having to apply some real strategy. You have to predict the path of the incoming missiles while also balancing how many missiles you have to defend your cities, and from which defense site you’re launching them.
And, of course, it gets harder and harder as you go along, until your screen is filled with glorious vector-graphic explosions.
There are already a bunch of knock-off mobile games out there, but the weight of the Missile Command name is sorely missing. What if someone really dove in and turned it into a bigger war strategy game? I know I’d be on board.
I’m still really unsure of what happens in this game, but I know you have to explore dungeons, find keys and fight dragons. I still think the sword looks like an arrow, and I actually pretty much hated to play this game — it never really lived up to the sweet-looking cover art — but Adventure, released in 1980 for the Atari 2600, was groundbreaking.
This was really the first of its kind for home consoles, setting the stage for every single RPG to come after. Yes, EVERY SINGLE ONE.
I would love to see this franchise brought back as just an old-fashioned dungeon crawler, except, you know, the gameplay isn’t god awful and you can actually tell what things are supposed to be.
Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater
There was a time when I could ollie and manual my way to besting nearly any other Tony Hawk player I came in contact with.
Never before or since has skateboarding been so well translated into video games. Not to mention the killer soundtrack for the first release in the franchise.
After a while, they kept getting cutesy and adding elements that frankly no one wanted. I want to just get out there, skate, rack up a bunch of points, and hear some punk music.
While there’s a lot that could be done — add a career mode where you can compete in the X Games or the Olympics, a vert ramp mode, etc. — I just crave that super fun, to the point/let’s see how many times I can spin around gameplay that the first two or three entries provided.
While there was an entry in this series as recently as 2020, it was basically a reskin of the first two for newer consoles. It doesn’t count.
I want to revisit the glory days of the first Pro Skater. Keep it simple, keep it fun.