While we wait for those more current games to age a bit, we'd like to offer up some names we'd much rather see revisited modern-style. You know, games that actually merit a facelift. We've each picked a few titles -- what would your choices be?
Jeremy Parish: When Metroid: Zero Mission came out 10 years ago (oh my god, has it been 10 years!?), remaking the original Metroid in brilliant style, our thoughts drifted immediately to the sequel. If any Metroid could use a remake, it's the second one. The original version pushed against the suffocating limitations of the Game Boy hardware with admirable vigor, but it definitely suffered from technological impositions, feeling at once cramped and linear. Despite being the most straightforward Metroid ever, it often became confusing because of the muddy graphics and crowded screen dimensions. Meanwhile, Metroid Fusion included a number of brilliant Metroid II callbacks, offering a tantalizing hint of what its world could have been like with greater freedom and fidelity.
Cassandra Khaw: I miss god games. I really do. Once in a while, we still get little flashes of brilliance like Reus but, by and large, it feels like amazing god games have drifted the way of the Dodo. But there's no point crying over spilt milk. Rather than worry about those halcyon days, I'm going to sit here and make puppy-dog eyes at the Flying Spaghetti Monster in hopes of seeing a Sim Life remake someday.
Released in 1992, SimLife was ... not a traditional god game, I guess. Unlike Populous, it didn't quite bequeath you with divine powers. Instead, it gave you a simulated eco-system and the freedom to tamper with the genetic structure of the local flora and fauna. You could change the physics of the environment, alter terrain and guide evolution however you will. What happens when you put big, clawed herbivores in the same room as tiny, fragile carnivores? I don't remember, but SimLife could totally answer that question.
Jaz Rignall: An exercise in design minimalism, Mercenary is an open-ended, non-linear 3D adventure game that was originally released for Atari 8-bit computers in 1985. Taking the role of the eponymous mercenary, you awaken to find you've crash-landed on an alien planet whose inhabitants are at war - and it soon becomes apparent that there's no choice but to become involved.
What transpires is a fascinating mixture of non-linear missions, exploration and political maneuvers as you play one side against the other to achieve your goal of escaping the planet - preferably with as much cash as possible. The backdrop to all this is a barren and minimal landscape that, while sparse, contains many secrets to discover. In a way, it's reminiscent of a very basic Shadow of the Colossus in that despite almost no action taking place between set pieces, its environment is nevertheless incredibly atmospheric and begs to be explored.
Mike Williams: I doubt a ton of people remember this series; I know I fell into it completely by accident. My father bought me the first Gargoyle's Quest to the original GameBoy and at the time, I hated it. The game was painfully hard for my child self, like a number of other Game Boy titles. I can't say I appreciated it the first time around.
The entire series is an odd mix of Final Fantasy-style overworld, platforming action, and RPG elements. In fact, the original and its sequel played a great deal like Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, with a far cooler protagonist. Gargoyle's Quest II for NES improved on the original with more of everything, while Demon's Crest for Super Nintendo shifted towards...
To see the rest of the list, head over to US Gamer.