5 classic Sega franchises that need to come back – Reader’s Feature

Inspired by the upcoming Mega Drive Mini, a long-time Sega fan suggests ways of updating everything from Shinobi to Golden Axe.

As a long-time (and therefore long-suffering) Sega fan I have been very pleased to see the obvious excitement for the upcoming Mega Drive Mini console. Not only that but the fact that it seems to be a really good product that Sega, for almost the first time in several generations when it comes to their retro stuff, has put some genuine effort into it.

And then I saw the unexpected annoucement of a Panzer Dragoon remake for the Switch, and well… I imagine you’ve already guessed where I’m going with this. These are the top five games that I would most like to see get rebooted for modern formats (I don’t really care which). A remake would be acceptable, but what I’d most like to see is a reboot, or simply sequel, that will be brand new and continue the legacy the way it always should’ve been.

1. Phantasy Star

It was kind of adorable watching Microsoft try to get everyone excited about Phantasy Star Online 2 at E3, but I’m going to guess it’s not the kind of annoucement most Xbox fans were waiting for. Even I have to admit I don’t really care that much, as what I’d like to see is a return to the original role-playing series. The Online games are simplistic action role-players but the originals were Sega’s premier role-playing series and really don’t deserve to be forgotten. They were also sci-fi games, which is very rare for a Japanese role-player so I’d love to see something like a cross between Mass Effect and Persona. A pipe dream, I’m sure, but what’s the point in dreaming small?

2. Shinobi

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice shows just how long ago it is since we’ve had a decent ninja game. I don’t know why, I guess Japanese games went out of fashion for a while there, but at the time Shinobi was one of Sega’s most famous action games. It was very ‘90s in terms of the outrageous action but I’m sure there’d be a way to make that work in a modern context, especially as it’s not a million miles away from something like Devil May Cry. The basics should still be fairly realistic though, with a mix of stealth and swordplay and, of course, lots and lots of shuriken. It’s begging for a new big, or at least medium, budget effort and I’d love to see it happen.

3. Gunstar Heroes

One of the greatest Mega Drive games ever made but my ulterior motive for suggesting this is that I’d love for Sega to bring Treasure back from obscurity. My understanding is that the company was always a loose band of developers, coming together as needed, and I’d love to see them brought back for one last outing (or 20). How to update the game is difficult though as the 2D action was pretty central to the appeal. But Treasure has often experimented with multiple plans of action in their games, most famously with Guardian Heroes, so I’m sure there’s a way they could adapt that into a sort of hybrid 3D game that could still play something like the original.

4. Golden Axe

Scrolling beat ‘em-ups are something that’s never really been brought into the 3D age but I’d love to see Sega try it. Unlike my Gunstar Heroes idea I’d try to make this fully 3D, I’m imagining a sort of co-op version of God Of War with less puzzling and more head-cleaving. There really is a lack of co-op games that are anything but shooters and I think this would be a great way to not only reclaim a great series but make something that was genuinely fresh. All you need to do is add some role-playing elements and plenty of loot and you’re already there. I’d almost imagine it as a sort of melee combat version of Borderlands.

5. Thunder Force

The problem with a lot of old Sega franchises is that they’re part of genres that are all but extinct nowadays, but I would treat this as an opportunity not a problem. Just like scrolling beat ‘em-ups, nobody’s ever really been able to update 2D shooters into a modern style of game. Star Fox looked like it was going that way but even that feels old-fashioned now. To me the answer is make it a kind of simplified space combat simulator and put the emphasis on spectacle and outrageously large enemies and explosions. Something like the space sections of Halo Reach but more over-the-top. Co-op wouldn’t hurt here either, but really… it shouldn’t be hard to make flying a spaceship seem fun.

By reader Renwick

The reader’s feature does not necessarily represent the views of GameCentral or Metro.

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