During Microsoft’s E3 2014 presentation, Phil Spencer and co announced something that blind sided us all – a re-make of Phantom Dust. The original Phantom Dust on the Xbox was released to favourable reviews that praised the games innovation and the game is considered the grand father of modern-day card capture games. It was a smart move to reinvigorate a fan favourite from Microsoft’s original games console for the modern-day gamer – but this got me thinking – Why haven’t Sony done the same?
As much as we love new IP’s, Sony have a plethora of franchises from their past that they have just left to rot in their back catalogue. The announcement of a now-gen version of Shadow of the Beast at E3 2013 was great and all, but it wasn’t the announcement most were all hoping for. Some of the forgotten franchises were in their prime when Sony decided enough was enough and put them on permanent hiatus and, with Sony in search of their next big system seller, it begs the question “is it time to dust them off for the PS4”?
We have scoured the dusty catacombs of the PS1, PS2 and early PS3 era’s to pull together this list of 10 forgotten IP’s that Sony still own that should be resurrected for the PS4.
It feels like racing games have to have their own hook these days to set them apart from the crowd. “Street racing”, being a “Realistic driving sim” or some sort of tacked on story line seem to take priority and most developers forget that a driving game should be one thing, first and foremost – fun – and this is something that Destruction Derby had in abundance. For those that missed the PS1 and PS2 classics, the Destruction Derby games had no premise than to race, smash-up other cars and have laughs along the way. It wasn’t realistic. It didn’t have any sort of story to it. It was just pure fun. If Sony are looking for a racing game which will stand out from the crowd, reviving Destruction Derby with the same, simplistic, chaotic game play with glorious now-gen graphics, they could be onto a winner.
Fellow PSGamer Paul would have killed me if Warhawk had not made this list. Released during the early days on the PS3, Warhawk was an online shooter set in lush environments and filled with flying vehicles of death called – wait for it – Warhawks. Even though Warhawk was not a commercial success, the game found itself a dedicated community full of hardcore fans who were still playing the game right up until the servers went dark in 2013. Sony did see some potential in the title and released pseudo-sequel Starwawk which never seemed to get off the ground thanks to some integral game play changes including base building. Shooters are a little sparse on the PS4 right now and a reinvigorated Warhawk sequel would certainly help to fill that gap.
Most of those why played the original G-Police and it’s sequel remember these games with fond memories. Originally developed at Psygnosis (which went on to become Studio Liverpool – RIP) G-Police depicted a blade runner inspired futuristic world where corporations now held the military might and the G-Police, a government founded policing organisation, was all that stopped corporate armies from their nefarious undertakings. The main game play was from a VTOL aircraft packed full of weaponry for you to unload onto gang members and the graphics were impressive for their time. Combat-flight sims are beginning to come back into fashion and now is the time for Sony to dust off G-Police for the PS4.
The most recently retired IP from this list, WipEout managed to survive through 3 generations of home consoles, seeing releases on the PS1, PS2, PS3 and Vita before Studio Liverpool was closed and the IP’s future was cast into doubt. Zero-G racing had been a staple of Playstation gaming for almost 2 decades but the PS4 is sadly missing an entry in the WipEout series. Weak and generally unfounded rumours have been doing the rounds that the WipEout IP had been given to another of Sony’s first party studios but nothing has been confirmed and no official statement on WipEouts future has been made.
Several industry insiders had previously claimed the Sony BEND studio was working on a new game in the Syphon Filter series, but after concept art leaked prior to E3 2014 from the game the studio was actually working on, those rumours have been quashed. The cliff hanger at the end of 2007 entry Syphon Filter: Logans Shadow still has gamers guessing to this day and we can only hope that Sony has somebody working on the follow-up.
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