5 IPs that Telltale Should Tackle Next
Something interesting (and pretty awesome) happened at the 10th Annual VGAs (Video Game Awards). Telltale’s episodic The Walking Dead beat out big franchises such as Halo 4 to claim game of the year. Much in the way that a black & white indie-comic dethroned juggernauts such as X-Men and Batman, Telltale somehow managed to work action into an old-school point and click game, and did so brilliantly. From great graphics and gameplay, to deep characters and tough decisions that are unencumbered by a karmic system, this game brought together a lot of tried and tested elements into something completely new. While Telltale shows us shades of this with Back To The Future and Jurassic Park, The Walking Dead took everything to the next level. While there will certainly be a season 2 in the future, here are 5 other IPs that I’d love to see them tackle. Some of these may be a bit unrealistic, but bear with me – let’s just try and have a little fun.
1. Final Fantasy
I know that recently Square has taken a lot of flack from even its most loyal fans, and in some cases rightfully so, but let’s not forget that Square has created some of the most compelling games and characters of all time. For many, Cloud is right up there with Sonic or Mario, and I would take Sephiroth over Bowser any day. But the formula for Final Fantasy has clearly grown stale, which was highly apparent in Final Fantasy 13.
Now, for those that have played FF7, do you remember how your conversations with certain characters affected outcomes? From getting Vincent Valentine to join your team, to potentially going on a date with Barrett (what?) choices and conversations had tangible results. Now let’s take some FF battle elements and throw them into a Telltale style game. Would it be another game of the year? Maybe not. Would it be a different direction for Final Fantasy? Absolutely.
Here comes my odd pick. This past week, I was sick – really sick. Sick to my stomach, caught a brutal cough (which I still can’t shake) and was basically so sick that I couldn’t even stand to play videogames or read comics. So, I decided to revisit a few literary classics and that brought me back to perhaps my favourite novel of all time: 1984.
While the concept of dystopia certainly existed before Orwell’s classic, I can’t think of anyone that did it better. From setting the stage, to creating a great backstory and a fantastic villain, this book had it all. With strong messages about war, economics, freedom and the middle class that still resonate today, this book does so much on so many levels. If you haven’t read it, I highly recommend it.
The story begins with Winston Smith, a government worker who just can’t seem to fit in within the totalitarian regime that employs him. As Winston slowly begins to lose his mind, he begins to realize that he is not alone. Unfortunately, he’s also a complete chicken shit, so he would lend himself well to a point and click type game. I’m just not sure if it would be a game that could be won …
3. Silent Hill
At its core, The Walking Dead was survival horror done right. Long-before it came along, I remember Silent Hill 2 becoming one of my favourite all-time games. While I think it still holds up nicely today, the rest of the series has seemed to go steadily downhill. Why not try moving it to a different format and seeing what happens? I think some fantastic and creepy environments could be created, and the puzzle elements that I loved from Silent Hill 2 could really shine – not too mention some interesting character development via some really difficult choices.
4. Zack & Wiki Sequel
This one is probably obvious since it is already a point and click adventure type game. My only gripe is that this gem may never see a sequel. That’s too bad, because this was a fun, cute game that made very cool use of the Wiimote, had a great story and some hilarious characters. Unfortunately, it didn’t do well at retail, but 5 years later, could it do well as a digital title? I think so, and I’m sure that fans of the series would gladly shell out $4.99 an episode.
5.Batman (The Animated Series)
I don’t want to take anything away from Rocksteady and their excellent Batman games. They, along with Sucker Punch! have revived the superhero videogame and taken it to unparalleled heights. With Batman, this came through some good fighting, mixed with some puzzle elements and some great stealth gameplay. However, one thing was sorely lacking in my opinion – the detective part of the game.
Sure, we have x-ray vision/detective mode, but where’s Batman holding a pen flashlight in his teeth rifling through a filing cabinet looking for some evidence? Or sneaking into a warehouse with Robin to crash a badguy party that he set up? I think a lot of really cool and really fun Batman elements could be made into a Walking Dead style game, and at the same time combat would not suffer even though it is not the focus.
And the DC Animated Universe style characters? Icing on the cake. While it’s great to see that the cast of the DCAU still gets some steady gigs, I find it disappointing that there hasn’t been some kind of DCAU revival. I loved Batman the Animated Series, couldn’t believe that Justice League Unlimited got cancelled when it did, and am still mourning Batman Beyond. A game like this would be a nice fan service on so many levels.
Well, that’s my Top 5. Agree, disagree or just want to let me know yours? Be sure to sound off below!
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