The gaming industry is pretty well known for leaving a lot of obvious million-dollar ideas on the table. A Mario and Sonic crossover? Eh, let’s send them to the Olympics instead. “Half-Life 3”? Let’s just leave that cliffhanger where it is. There are all kinds of games that, for one reason or another, haven’t and likely never will be made.
But there are some game concepts we simply can’t get out of our heads for how fun, obvious and lucrative they seem. It’s some of these that we’re going to cover below.
01 A Disney Fighting Game
A large part of why Nintendo‘s Smash Bros. series works as well as it does is because it relies on the strength of established characters. Miis aside, every character exists as a representation of some aspect of gaming history up to this point, and each one has adoring and perpetually interested fans. There are few other companies that can match Nintendo’s ability to get such a lovable cast together.
Capcom has managed to some extent by teaming up with Marvel; DC has managed its own fairly expansive fighting series with “Injustice.” But Disney truly has the star-studded cast to get the job done on a Smash Bros. scale. So why hasn’t the House of Mouse combined its beloved characters in a playful but action-packed fighting game? We have no idea, but it ought to!
02 Banjo-Kazooie Remakes
Crash Bandicoot laid the groundwork, proving that high-quality remakes of classic ’90s games could sell like crazy. Spyro, as usual, followed him up, driving the point home that there was gold to be found if done properly. Even Bubsy managed a comeback (even though, in true Bubsy fashion, it still flopped). But one of the other classic mascots of the ’90s era remains in hibernation.
We’d hoped that, after their announced inclusion in Smash Bros., Banjo and Kazooie would be heading for their own remake. But all there’s been on the topic since is a dodgy Amazon listing. We’re still holding out hope that this bear and bird can fly together again though.
03 Modern College Basketball Games
Every year we see a new NBA 2K installment from EA. The new roster updates and immense sales have ensured that it will always be a success. For years now, though, EA’s focus has been exclusively on the pro game, despite the off-the-charts popularity of NCAA basketball. This has generally been because of “amateurism” or the idea that collegiate athletes’ images can’t be used to sell video games. This idea, however, is increasingly ludicrous.
The NCAA rakes in boatloads of cash on these players’ backs, the players themselves build enormous personal brands and college basketball betting markets handle millions and millions of dollars each year. The NCAA, like the NBA, is every bit a business. Ideally, this would mean it could work with EA to give the players a share of game profits. But we hope that one way or another an NCAA series in the image of NBA 2K will be established soon.
04 AAA Jurassic Park Game
We’re finally at the point where licensed non-video gaming properties are starting to get legitimately excellent games of their own. Batman has the “Arkham” quadrilogy, Alien got the incredible “Alien Isolation” and a wide swath of horror movies were represented well in “Dead by Daylight.” Yet one of the most obvious concepts (and prospective gold mines) has still only gotten an evolution of “Zoo Tycoon” and a few other mobile experiences.
A proper Jurassic Park game would put players at the center of the park as the escape happens, then follow their desperate attempts to stay alive despite the onslaught of terrible prehistoric monsters that come their way. Ideally, we envision a AAA game styled like “Bioshock,” with multiple weapons and character abilities and a world of detail.
05 A Captain Falcon Action Game
This is one of the more obvious game ideas of the bunch. “F-Zero” protagonist Captain Falcon, popularized by Smash Bros. and known for his penchant for having his fists explode into giant flaming falcon shapes, is ready and waiting for a modern title. Nintendo doesn’t seem inclined to act on the character’s popularity, but the obvious play is to take the good captain and give him his own brawler, wherein he can put those exploding fists and acrobatics to full use.
Taking the Batman Arkham approach would be a dream scenario and could turn Captain Falcon into one of the most prominent characters in modern gaming. But really, any well-made modern combat game featuring the character could be a blast.
What are some game concepts you’d like to see come to light? Let us know down in the comments.