8 Awesome Old-School Games I Want to See Rebooted (Maybe Just Because I’m Old…)
I am old. I am so, so very old. I just turned 30 this year, which makes me just about as old as the video game medium itself. Sigh.
I was at Break’s apartment a couple months ago, for something. (I’m not sure what- my whole Spring was a blur.) “Want to play the new Mortal Kombat?” he asked.
“Uhh, okay,” I answered, not very enthusiastically.
“Don’t worry,” he said. “I know the last ones sucked. But I promise you this one’s awesome!”
I played it. And it was, indeed, really incredibly awesome. It was every bit as awesome, in its newfangled way, as the original “Babality!”-filled Mortal Kombat game I’d enjoyed playing as a 7th grader, so very, very long ago.
Which made me reflect on which long-dead, old school franchises deserved an update. (I fully realize that several Mortal Kombat games have been made between the first one and this new one, but I- justifiably- like to pretend that they don’t exist.) Which awesome NES and SNES games (I never had a Genesis, sorry…) deserve to be brought back from the dead and given current-gen life?
I petition game developers and publishers to consider rebooting these titles (it’s hard to call some of them franchises), if only for me. I promise I will give you $59.99. That’s incentive enough, right??
Without further ado, here’s my list of eight awesome old school games that I want to see brought back:
8. Tiger Heli (NES)
I’ve come to realize I’m the only fan this game has ever had. I only played it because my next door neighbor had it (I guess he was the only other fan). It was awesome! You got a bird’s-eye-view of a modern battlefield as an attack helicopter, and you bombed the shit out of bases and tanks while dodging their deadly fire. Really simple and elegant, and fun. The Attack Helicopter killstreak award in Call of Duty: Black Ops is the only thing I’ve seen in a modern game that remind me of this- and it shows how fun a PS3 or 360 version of Tiger Heli could be.
7. Ren & Stimpy (SNES)
I loved the game The Ren & Stimpy Show: Veediots! I loved the fact that, after you beat the game, Ren and Stimpy just gave you a log. That was it. The game didn’t make any sense and that was probably the point of it. I loved it. The world needs Ren & Stimpy, now more than ever. Even though I hate the Portal series, they definitely prove that there’s space for irreverent games, and a new Ren & Stimpy would fit that bill perfectly.
6. Rush’n Attack (NES)
Eff yeah, Rush’n Attack! Everybody knew that the name meant “Russian Attack”, and the point of the game was to run around killing Russians to defend America. This was still a potent motivator back when the game first came out, but I can understand why they didn’t make any sequels after the fall of Communism. Who wants to run around killing Boris Yeltsin? He’d be too easy a target. But it’s a brand new day, and old-school Evil Russia is back, baby. With Vladimir Putin in charge, Russians make great villains once again. It’s high time to knife some more Russkies! America, fuck yeah!
5. Battletoads (NES)
Sure it was something of a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles take-off, but who cares? Splinter can only wish his pizza-eaters could star in such an awesome game. Also, it must be noted, this game was impossible. This was one of the only games that I actually enjoyed watching someone else play, because my friend Justin was the only person I knew who could beat it. I want to see turtles riding motorcycles, on a PS3. I want a new Battletoads.
4. Disney’s Aladdin (SNES)
Yeah, yeah, yeah. Poke fun all you want. But this game was pretty great. It had great music, bright colors, exotic locales, the works. Plus it was easy to beat, which made me feel better about my lack of Battletoads-playing prowess. This was definitely the best of the SNES Disney games. Aladdin is in my opinion also the Disney animated movie from this era that holds up the best, and I think a reboot with great modern graphics could be a real crowd-pleaser. I’d definitely buy it. (But shh! Don’t tell anyone, ‘kay?)
3. RoboCop Versus The Terminator (SNES)
I don’t care if in practice this wasn’t that great of a game. What a concept!! If we can have Alien Vs. Predator up the wazoo, why not RoboCop Vs. Terminator? This seems like a no-brainer to me. I want to see cyborg vs. cyborg carnage, in Detroit. Please, somebody make a new version of this game.
2. Zombies Ate My Neighbors (SNES)
This is the “Ooh, look how indie!” section of this list. I’m not trying to appear cultier than thou, I promise. This was just a fun as hell game, and probably one of the most underrated of all time. I enjoyed how tongue in cheek this game was. I know people take zombies pretty seriously these days (?!?), but I think there’s place for a fun update of this wonderful game.
1. F-Zero (SNES)
There are so many racing games these days that max out the “realism” of it all. Gran Turismo 5 was, in my opinion, so technically polished and perfect that it felt like a museum piece. I felt more compelled to frame the game and put it on my wall than to play it. It’s great to have games like MotorStorm and Pure that make dirt more realistic than it’s ever looked before, but I think the time has come for an equally technically amazing reboot of the off-the-wall, not-of-this-world racer F-Zero. Why hasn’t there been an F-Zero for this generation (a real one I mean- not just a retro Wii port)?? It could be a true visual stunner, like the very best parts of Tron: Evolution.
And finally, from the deep, dark depths of my own personal collection…
Bill Laimbeer’s Combat Basketball (SNES)
This is the all time greatest stupid video game. This was like NBA Jam on steroids (come to think of it, the real Bill Laimbeer probably was on steroids…), way ahead of its time. It’s the future, and only robots play basketball (except for human Bill Laimbeer). Basically you beat the shit out of each other, without the risk of any penalties. Okay, this game was crappy but it could have been so much better. I would love to see this game on a modern system. It would be the perfect antidote to every not-fun (in my opinion…) anal-retentive basketball “sim” they put out these days. Robots playing basketball! It’s just like that new Hugh Jackman robot boxer movie coming out this Fall (Okay, I’ll admit that looks kinda dumb…) But who remembers Bill Laimbeer, that lovable brute? They’d need to find a new b-balling thug to name it after- maybe it could be Ron Artest’s Combat Basketball. Anyway, I’d pay money for this game.
But would my $59.99 cover the cost of its development??