The video game industry is full of franchises that have been abandoned. After all, there are thousands of games released every year and it takes a special kind of franchise to be able to weather the test of time while releasing new titles. Only a few examples exist that have continued to remain successful, such as Mario, Final Fantasy, and The Legend of Zelda. These series represent some of the best video game franchises and have managed to evolve with the industry and adapt to the tastes of modern players.
However, that isn’t to say that all dormant video game franchises are failures. In fact, there are multiple series that were put aside due to unfortunate circumstances, such as suboptimal market times for a specific genre or a studio's desire to go in a different direction for a while. Regardless, there are certain series that deserve a remake or release for the latest gaming platforms. Check out the games below and vote up the dead video game series you would resurrect for an epic comeback.
Known as Mother 2 in Japan, Earthbound was one of Nintendo’s first successful role-playing games that managed to bridge the gap between Japanese and American audiences. It contained experimental game mechanics that have become the norm in RPGs, plenty of satirical humor, and an emotional and interesting plot. Since its arrival in 1994, Earthbound has gone on to become one of the most praised titles in history and it considered a pioneer in role-playing games. Unfortunately, neither the sequel or Earthbound’s predecessor ever saw official releases outside of Japan, effectively depriving fans from North American and Europe from being able to enjoy more of the series.
Developer: Ape, Inc., HAL Laboratory
Platform: Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Game Boy Advance
Despite the fact that only two games were ever released in the Chrono series, the franchise is arguably one of the greatest role-playing games of all time. Having launched on the SNES in 1995, Chrono Trigger received near universal critical acclaim and went on to sell millions of copies. In particular, praise centered on its evolution of the genre after the success of Final Fantasy and The Secret of Mana, improving graphics, battle systems, and the cast of characters. It also showcased an amazing open-world exploration, alternate endings, and an interesting skill/combo system.
It was so successful that it spawned a PlayStation sequel in the form of Chrono Cross, which functioned as a terrible sequel, but was a great game regardless. Unfortunately, Square Enix has concentrated on its other properties in the intervening years, only releasing the original games on new platforms rather than developing any new entries.
Developer: Square, Tose Co., Ltd.
Publisher: Square Enix, Square Electronic Arts, Square
Platform: Super Nintendo Entertainment System, PlayStation 3, Nintendo DS, PlayStation, iPhone, + more
Created by legendary designer Shigeru Miyamoto and Nintendo, F-Zero is a racing game that originally released in 1990 for the SNES. It stood out from typical racers due to its fast-paced gameplay, challenging difficulty, and distinctive soundtrack. Since the 2004 release of F-Zero: Climax, the Japanese publisher has not made any further announcements about bringing back the series, with Miyamoto saying that he hasn’t felt the need to revive it on modern consoles.
Developer: Nintendo, Nintendo Entertainment Analysis & Development
Platform: Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Microsoft Windows, Wii
Capcom’s most well known RPG, 1993’s Breath of Fire, saw players take on the role of Ryu as he tries to track down his sister. While the game received praise all around, the exploration mechanic was particularly highlighted because it made the game much less linear than other RPGs.
Breath of Fire 6 was released in Japan in 2016, though an English translation has not been announced and is not in development. This leaves Western audiences without the chance to continue the series, with the last worldwide release in 2003 with Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter.
Publisher: Ubisoft, Square, Capcom
Platform: Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Game Boy Advance, Nintendo 64