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10 Beloved Gaming Franchises That 
Just Disappeared 
http://www.gamebasin.com/news/10-beloved-gaming-franchises-that-just-disappeared 
Nostalgia can be a powerful thing. For some reason or another a great many of us are utterly 
convinced that things were just better in the past, and when talking about video games, there are 
some good points to be made – especially when many are the game series’ with only one or two 
entries that are loved by legions of fans simply up and vanished into thin air one day. Sometimes 
this is because developers go belly up, or they decide to take the company in a different direction, 
or the rights move to a publisher that doesn’t have any idea what to do with the franchise, or – 
even worse – they just decide that nobody wants any more of that game. It’s understandable for 
some franchises that are less profitable for others, but in an industry where brand recognition is 
possibly more crucial to a game’s success than any other medium (Mario, Sonic and Lara, we’re 
looking at you), it seems faintly ridiculous to toss aside a successful series for any minor reason. It 
might seem strange to lament the lack of sequels for a game, as movie sequels are often greeted 
with cynicism, but the fact is that games developers are far better than film studios at improving 
on an original product, meaning a phenomenon exists (almost solely) within gaming where the first 
game in a series is rarely the best. What then, are the games series’ without recent instalments 
that deserve to be revived? Here are ten we think should make the cut… 
10. Advance Wars
The Nintendo franchise that has been going a lot longer than most westerners think (the first game 
to hit Europe and the US was Advance Wars in 2001/2002, but the Wars series had been going 
strong in Japan since 1988), Advance Wars is a favourite of many a strategy nut, its deceptively 
simple brand of turn‐based combat hiding‐games that are both incredibly addictive and fiendishly 
difficult to truly complete. Each game sees you taking command of an army trying to defend a 
nation (and sometimes the world) and could seem rather dry were it not for the colourful COs you 
get to play as and the crucial addition of CO powers that dramatically affect the game mechanics. 
Nintendo and developer Intelligent Systems had a good run of handheld sequels and even a 
console spin‐off, Battalion Wars, but the franchise seemed to run aground when it tossed out its 
established characters and world with Advance Wars: Dark Conflict (or Days of Ruin in some 
territories), replacing them with a radically pared‐down game and a bleak story to match the new 
title. That was in 2008, and there hasn’t been a new Advance Wars since. Perhaps it was that the 
dreary post‐apocalyptic setting of Dark Conflict didn’t go down well – so why not just change it up 
for the next game, or bring back the world of previous games? It seems a shame to throw the baby 
out with the bathwater, especially with one of the world’s leading strategy franchises. 
9. Crash Bandicoot
Adults of a certain age – like the author of this post – will have incredibly fond memories of the 
first Crash Bandicoot for Playstation, a wacky platformer with an absurd sense of humour and, once 
upon a time, a serious contender for Mario’s throne. Since Crash’s arrival in 1996 there have been 
over a dozen sequels and spin‐offs, making the franchise one of the most successful in games 
history. Seriously: you know you’ve got a winner on your hand when an animated marsupial can 
headline a party or kart racing game. But perhaps there’s been too much of a good thing for poor 
Crash – he’s been so popular that, after initial developer Naughty Dog left him to take on slightly 
more serious fare like Jak & Daxter in 1999, he’s been passed around by a few different developers 
and publishers to varying degrees of success, sometimes even resulting in cancelled games (there 
are at least four of them so far). Which is perhaps why there hasn’t been a core Crash game since 
2008. The rights are currently held by Activision (though there’s been some speculation that Sony 
recently bought them back) but there are no current plans to make a new game. Many have been 
calling for a complete reboot of the series (including the original creators), and with a new console 
generation upon us, has there ever been a better time? 
8. Okami
It might be unfair to dismiss the unique Okami as having “just disappeared”: after its initial release 
on the PS2, the adventure game where players control a wolf‐god and control the gorgeously 
painted environment with an onscreen brush using gestures was remade not once, but twice – first 
for the Wii and secondly as an HD remastering for the PS3. The game was adored by critics and 
fans upon release, many citing its beauty, scale, storytelling and original elements as reasons for 
its success. Although it didn’t sell quite as many copies as developer Clover Studios hoped, a sequel 
was greenlit and Okamiden – an indirect successor to the original – was released on the Nintendo 
DS in 2010. A true sequel has been mooted, but no‐one seems much interested in going back to 
that well. It’s at once a shame and a relief; while it’s unlikely we’ll ever be able to further explore 
the wonderful world of Okami, there’s been a pretty high bar set in terms of quality and experience 
that would be difficult for even the original developers to surpass, so maybe it’s for the best. 
7. Shenmue
Something of a forgotten classic, Shenmue and its only sequel Shenmue 2 were trailblazers for 
multi‐faceted gameplay, open‐world exploration and non‐linear storytelling in video games when 
first released on the Dreamcast in the late ’90s and early ’00s. Both games follow hero Ryo Hazuki 
on the hunt for his father’s killers – first in Japan, then Hong Kong – and players enjoyed exploration, 
detection and action set‐pieces in the main story with almost endless side quests to keep them 
occupied, from hauling crates for minimum wage and participating in arm wrestling contests to 
playing fully integrated arcade games like Afterburner for hours on end. There was certainly a lot 
to keep gamers occupied. In fact, there was more than either game could actually contain, as both 
end on a cliffhanger with many story threads left unresolved. At least for the first instalment some 
of those threads are dealt with in Shenmue 2, but the unfortunate coincidence of the creators 
wanting to finish the story in a third game and Sega not wanting to spend more money on what 
was at the time a critically‐acclaimed financial failure meant that we’re unlikely to find out the 
conclusion to Ryo’s story any time soon. 
6. Jet Set Radio 
There seems to be a pretty strong pattern of game franchises that started out on Sega’s doomed 
Dreamcast suffering an ignoble fate, like the previous entry Shenmue (and does anyone remember 
Chu Chu Rocket?) and the sublime graffiti/rollerblading neon‐wonder that was Jet Set Radio. A 
truly original game for its time, JSR had players skitching and grinding across a vibrantly coloured 
Tokyo as a host of weird and wonderful taggers attempting to make their mark on the world by 
first spray‐painting their graffiti on bus stops and alleyways and then taking down totalitarian 
fascist police states. (Try hunting down another game with something even close to that 
premise…er, discounting Marc Ecko’s Getting Up. Which came out after JSR anyway, so shush.) 
What could have come off as oddball and inaccessible to many ended up becoming a cult favourite, 
the addictive game loop of trying to get a tag finished within a time limit or before the cops arrived 
to beat seven bells out of you and zooming off to the next one appealed to gamers so much that 
Sega made a sequel – Jet Set Radio Future – for Xbox in 2002…and then promptly forgot their 
brilliant franchise existed. So why haven’t there been any more games in the twelve intervening
years? Some of the characters have appeared in Sega’s tennis and racing games, so they must still 
think they have some appeal, and a Jet Set Radio Revival would most certainly be warmly 
welcomed by gamers. A modern twist on the formula could work wonders, what with open world 
gaming being as popular and potentially vast as it is today – just imagine a city built to true scale 
that could be sprayed all over – and the options for players to create their own tags would be 
endless with the option to upload and manipulate images on next‐gen consoles, Forza‐style. 
5. Chrono Trigger 
What’s Square‐Enix’s (formerly Squaresoft) best games franchise? If you said Final Fantasy you’re 
wrong, and not just because that series has taken a real nose‐dive in quality and coherence in 
recent years. Chrono Trigger, on the other hand, has been criminally overlooked and under‐utilised 
over the years, despite being one of the freshest, most rewarding RPGs of the last thirty years. To 
cut a long story short, here’s all you need to know about Chrono Trigger: it takes the quasi‐medieval 
characters, settings and combat styles of Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest, throws in a robot, a 
talking frog who’s also a knight, and gives them all a time machine they need to use to traverse 
different periods in their world’s history in order to prevent the apocalypse. Excited yet? There was 
one sequel, Chrono Cross, released in 1999, and the creators have since expressed an interest in 
another Chrono game – as have countless fans and gaming magazine polls – but it has yet to 
materialise, alas. 
4. Carmageddon
You thought last week’s Game of Thrones was too violent? Hey, the ’90s called; they want their 
outrage back. Courting controversy and conservative umbrage way before it was cool, the frankly 
bonkers Carmageddon took the concept of Death Race 2000 and pushed it off a cliff, making the 
aim of the motor‐racing game less about beating other drivers to the finish line and more about 
smearing as many pedestrians and fellow racers across the tarmac as possible. Naturally, gamers 
loved it, Carmageddon sold around two million copies according to developer Stainless games and 
preceded two sequels; Carmageddon II: Carpocalypse Now and Carmageddon TDR 2000. 
Unfortunately, though, that was it for over a decade, as Stainless didn’t own the rights to their 
game and publisher SCi faffed around with the franchise in development until 2011, when Stainless 
obtained the rights and announced the return of Carmageddon in the form of a Kickstarter‐funded 
series reboot. That game, Carmageddon: Reincarnation, means that this story has a happy ending, 
as it was made available on Steam for early access in March 2014, fourteen years after the last 
instalment. Let’s hope it’s not quite as long until the next one… 
3. Streets Of Rage
You remember the music. You remember the power‐ups. You remember the rage‐inducing boss 
battles that resulted in at least one Mega Drive controller’s premature demise. One of the most‐loved 
fighting series’ in gaming history, Streets of Rage enjoyed great success and popularity when 
it was first released, resulting in two sequels shortly after along with comics and soundtrack albums. 
Unfortunately, since Streets of Rage 3 was released in 1994, there have been no more instalments 
other than those fans have made themselves. The Eidos‐developed Fighting Force was originally 
intended as the first 3D entry in the series until it became something else, but the games have 
never waned in popularity and gamers have been clamouring for a next‐gen makeover for decades 
now. If Street Fighter can get one, why not a game that’s still being played twenty years later? 
2. Timesplitters 
Coming from many of the key team behind Goldeneye and Perfect Dark for the N64, the 
Timesplitters games are for a certain generation the quintessential FPS, and it’s hard not to see
why. For sheer multiplayer fun the games are unrivalled, matching a madcap, Python‐esque sense 
of humour with a totally accessible control system and a cornucopia of OTT firearms. The first 
Timesplitters was somewhat overlooked, but Timesplitters 2 perfected the formula and became a 
staple of late‐night gaming sessions everywhere. The third game didn’t change much but gave the 
graphics an overhaul, likely thanks to the extra cash brought in by new publisher EA. Developer 
Free Radical Design has disbanded since the last game so we’re unlikely to see a true Timesplitters 
sequel unless the original creators come back together, as an EA‐spearheaded project would likely 
lose much of the insane flavour that gave the originals such fun appeal and made them cult 
favourites in the first place. 
1. Banjo-Kazooie 
Sometimes – not often – there comes along a game series that brings so much joy and is so expertly 
created that it would be far better to simply stop making new games than to make inferior sequels 
so as not to sully the memory of the original experience. That might sound like extreme nostalgia 
talking, but when you’ve played the ridiculously sublime Banjo‐Kazooie and the even better sequel 
Banjo‐Tooie, not much else really comes up to snuff. Original developers Rare were in their heyday 
in the late ’90s, creating several classics for the Nintendo 64 including but not limited to the Banjo 
games, Jet Force Gemini, Perfect Dark and of course Goldeneye. Unfortunately, not long after 
Microsoft entered the home console market with the Xbox, they bought out the company and half 
of their staff left to form their own companies, most notably Free Radical Design, which was 
responsible for the aforementioned Timesplitters games until they got bought out. As a result, the 
next home console Banjo game ended up being delayed until 2008, when Banjo‐Kazooie: Nuts & 
Bolts landed on Xbox 360, and…didn’t really impress anyone. A major disappointment to fans, then, 
and a testament to the quality of the first games. There are no further sequels in development, 
and while there’s still hope in the hearts of some that we’ll one day see Banjo‐Threeie and it’ll be 
the best thing since sliced bread, perhaps it’s best that don’t.
PC Game CD Keys: 
 EA Games CD Key http://www.gamebasin.com/publisher/ea.html 
 RPG Games CD Key http://www.gamebasin.com/pc‐games/rpg‐game.html 
 ACT Games CD Key http://www.gamebasin.com/pc‐games/act‐game.html 
 FPS Games CD Key http://www.gamebasin.com/pc‐games/fps‐game.html 
 Adventure Games CD Key http://www.gamebasin.com/pc‐games/avg‐game.html 
 Racing Games CD Key http://www.gamebasin.com/pc‐games/rac‐game.html 
 Sport Games CD Key http://www.gamebasin.com/pc‐games/spt‐game.html 
 FTG Games CD Key http://www.gamebasin.com/pc‐games/ftg‐game.html 
 RTS Games CD Key http://www.gamebasin.com/pc‐games/rts‐game.html 
 SLG Games CD Key http://www.gamebasin.com/pc‐games/slg‐game.html

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  • 1. 10 Beloved Gaming Franchises That Just Disappeared http://www.gamebasin.com/news/10-beloved-gaming-franchises-that-just-disappeared Nostalgia can be a powerful thing. For some reason or another a great many of us are utterly convinced that things were just better in the past, and when talking about video games, there are some good points to be made – especially when many are the game series’ with only one or two entries that are loved by legions of fans simply up and vanished into thin air one day. Sometimes this is because developers go belly up, or they decide to take the company in a different direction, or the rights move to a publisher that doesn’t have any idea what to do with the franchise, or – even worse – they just decide that nobody wants any more of that game. It’s understandable for some franchises that are less profitable for others, but in an industry where brand recognition is possibly more crucial to a game’s success than any other medium (Mario, Sonic and Lara, we’re looking at you), it seems faintly ridiculous to toss aside a successful series for any minor reason. It might seem strange to lament the lack of sequels for a game, as movie sequels are often greeted with cynicism, but the fact is that games developers are far better than film studios at improving on an original product, meaning a phenomenon exists (almost solely) within gaming where the first game in a series is rarely the best. What then, are the games series’ without recent instalments that deserve to be revived? Here are ten we think should make the cut… 10. Advance Wars
  • 2. The Nintendo franchise that has been going a lot longer than most westerners think (the first game to hit Europe and the US was Advance Wars in 2001/2002, but the Wars series had been going strong in Japan since 1988), Advance Wars is a favourite of many a strategy nut, its deceptively simple brand of turn‐based combat hiding‐games that are both incredibly addictive and fiendishly difficult to truly complete. Each game sees you taking command of an army trying to defend a nation (and sometimes the world) and could seem rather dry were it not for the colourful COs you get to play as and the crucial addition of CO powers that dramatically affect the game mechanics. Nintendo and developer Intelligent Systems had a good run of handheld sequels and even a console spin‐off, Battalion Wars, but the franchise seemed to run aground when it tossed out its established characters and world with Advance Wars: Dark Conflict (or Days of Ruin in some territories), replacing them with a radically pared‐down game and a bleak story to match the new title. That was in 2008, and there hasn’t been a new Advance Wars since. Perhaps it was that the dreary post‐apocalyptic setting of Dark Conflict didn’t go down well – so why not just change it up for the next game, or bring back the world of previous games? It seems a shame to throw the baby out with the bathwater, especially with one of the world’s leading strategy franchises. 9. Crash Bandicoot
  • 3. Adults of a certain age – like the author of this post – will have incredibly fond memories of the first Crash Bandicoot for Playstation, a wacky platformer with an absurd sense of humour and, once upon a time, a serious contender for Mario’s throne. Since Crash’s arrival in 1996 there have been over a dozen sequels and spin‐offs, making the franchise one of the most successful in games history. Seriously: you know you’ve got a winner on your hand when an animated marsupial can headline a party or kart racing game. But perhaps there’s been too much of a good thing for poor Crash – he’s been so popular that, after initial developer Naughty Dog left him to take on slightly more serious fare like Jak & Daxter in 1999, he’s been passed around by a few different developers and publishers to varying degrees of success, sometimes even resulting in cancelled games (there are at least four of them so far). Which is perhaps why there hasn’t been a core Crash game since 2008. The rights are currently held by Activision (though there’s been some speculation that Sony recently bought them back) but there are no current plans to make a new game. Many have been calling for a complete reboot of the series (including the original creators), and with a new console generation upon us, has there ever been a better time? 8. Okami
  • 4. It might be unfair to dismiss the unique Okami as having “just disappeared”: after its initial release on the PS2, the adventure game where players control a wolf‐god and control the gorgeously painted environment with an onscreen brush using gestures was remade not once, but twice – first for the Wii and secondly as an HD remastering for the PS3. The game was adored by critics and fans upon release, many citing its beauty, scale, storytelling and original elements as reasons for its success. Although it didn’t sell quite as many copies as developer Clover Studios hoped, a sequel was greenlit and Okamiden – an indirect successor to the original – was released on the Nintendo DS in 2010. A true sequel has been mooted, but no‐one seems much interested in going back to that well. It’s at once a shame and a relief; while it’s unlikely we’ll ever be able to further explore the wonderful world of Okami, there’s been a pretty high bar set in terms of quality and experience that would be difficult for even the original developers to surpass, so maybe it’s for the best. 7. Shenmue
  • 5. Something of a forgotten classic, Shenmue and its only sequel Shenmue 2 were trailblazers for multi‐faceted gameplay, open‐world exploration and non‐linear storytelling in video games when first released on the Dreamcast in the late ’90s and early ’00s. Both games follow hero Ryo Hazuki on the hunt for his father’s killers – first in Japan, then Hong Kong – and players enjoyed exploration, detection and action set‐pieces in the main story with almost endless side quests to keep them occupied, from hauling crates for minimum wage and participating in arm wrestling contests to playing fully integrated arcade games like Afterburner for hours on end. There was certainly a lot to keep gamers occupied. In fact, there was more than either game could actually contain, as both end on a cliffhanger with many story threads left unresolved. At least for the first instalment some of those threads are dealt with in Shenmue 2, but the unfortunate coincidence of the creators wanting to finish the story in a third game and Sega not wanting to spend more money on what was at the time a critically‐acclaimed financial failure meant that we’re unlikely to find out the conclusion to Ryo’s story any time soon. 6. Jet Set Radio There seems to be a pretty strong pattern of game franchises that started out on Sega’s doomed Dreamcast suffering an ignoble fate, like the previous entry Shenmue (and does anyone remember Chu Chu Rocket?) and the sublime graffiti/rollerblading neon‐wonder that was Jet Set Radio. A truly original game for its time, JSR had players skitching and grinding across a vibrantly coloured Tokyo as a host of weird and wonderful taggers attempting to make their mark on the world by first spray‐painting their graffiti on bus stops and alleyways and then taking down totalitarian fascist police states. (Try hunting down another game with something even close to that premise…er, discounting Marc Ecko’s Getting Up. Which came out after JSR anyway, so shush.) What could have come off as oddball and inaccessible to many ended up becoming a cult favourite, the addictive game loop of trying to get a tag finished within a time limit or before the cops arrived to beat seven bells out of you and zooming off to the next one appealed to gamers so much that Sega made a sequel – Jet Set Radio Future – for Xbox in 2002…and then promptly forgot their brilliant franchise existed. So why haven’t there been any more games in the twelve intervening
  • 6. years? Some of the characters have appeared in Sega’s tennis and racing games, so they must still think they have some appeal, and a Jet Set Radio Revival would most certainly be warmly welcomed by gamers. A modern twist on the formula could work wonders, what with open world gaming being as popular and potentially vast as it is today – just imagine a city built to true scale that could be sprayed all over – and the options for players to create their own tags would be endless with the option to upload and manipulate images on next‐gen consoles, Forza‐style. 5. Chrono Trigger What’s Square‐Enix’s (formerly Squaresoft) best games franchise? If you said Final Fantasy you’re wrong, and not just because that series has taken a real nose‐dive in quality and coherence in recent years. Chrono Trigger, on the other hand, has been criminally overlooked and under‐utilised over the years, despite being one of the freshest, most rewarding RPGs of the last thirty years. To cut a long story short, here’s all you need to know about Chrono Trigger: it takes the quasi‐medieval characters, settings and combat styles of Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest, throws in a robot, a talking frog who’s also a knight, and gives them all a time machine they need to use to traverse different periods in their world’s history in order to prevent the apocalypse. Excited yet? There was one sequel, Chrono Cross, released in 1999, and the creators have since expressed an interest in another Chrono game – as have countless fans and gaming magazine polls – but it has yet to materialise, alas. 4. Carmageddon
  • 7. You thought last week’s Game of Thrones was too violent? Hey, the ’90s called; they want their outrage back. Courting controversy and conservative umbrage way before it was cool, the frankly bonkers Carmageddon took the concept of Death Race 2000 and pushed it off a cliff, making the aim of the motor‐racing game less about beating other drivers to the finish line and more about smearing as many pedestrians and fellow racers across the tarmac as possible. Naturally, gamers loved it, Carmageddon sold around two million copies according to developer Stainless games and preceded two sequels; Carmageddon II: Carpocalypse Now and Carmageddon TDR 2000. Unfortunately, though, that was it for over a decade, as Stainless didn’t own the rights to their game and publisher SCi faffed around with the franchise in development until 2011, when Stainless obtained the rights and announced the return of Carmageddon in the form of a Kickstarter‐funded series reboot. That game, Carmageddon: Reincarnation, means that this story has a happy ending, as it was made available on Steam for early access in March 2014, fourteen years after the last instalment. Let’s hope it’s not quite as long until the next one… 3. Streets Of Rage
  • 8. You remember the music. You remember the power‐ups. You remember the rage‐inducing boss battles that resulted in at least one Mega Drive controller’s premature demise. One of the most‐loved fighting series’ in gaming history, Streets of Rage enjoyed great success and popularity when it was first released, resulting in two sequels shortly after along with comics and soundtrack albums. Unfortunately, since Streets of Rage 3 was released in 1994, there have been no more instalments other than those fans have made themselves. The Eidos‐developed Fighting Force was originally intended as the first 3D entry in the series until it became something else, but the games have never waned in popularity and gamers have been clamouring for a next‐gen makeover for decades now. If Street Fighter can get one, why not a game that’s still being played twenty years later? 2. Timesplitters Coming from many of the key team behind Goldeneye and Perfect Dark for the N64, the Timesplitters games are for a certain generation the quintessential FPS, and it’s hard not to see
  • 9. why. For sheer multiplayer fun the games are unrivalled, matching a madcap, Python‐esque sense of humour with a totally accessible control system and a cornucopia of OTT firearms. The first Timesplitters was somewhat overlooked, but Timesplitters 2 perfected the formula and became a staple of late‐night gaming sessions everywhere. The third game didn’t change much but gave the graphics an overhaul, likely thanks to the extra cash brought in by new publisher EA. Developer Free Radical Design has disbanded since the last game so we’re unlikely to see a true Timesplitters sequel unless the original creators come back together, as an EA‐spearheaded project would likely lose much of the insane flavour that gave the originals such fun appeal and made them cult favourites in the first place. 1. Banjo-Kazooie Sometimes – not often – there comes along a game series that brings so much joy and is so expertly created that it would be far better to simply stop making new games than to make inferior sequels so as not to sully the memory of the original experience. That might sound like extreme nostalgia talking, but when you’ve played the ridiculously sublime Banjo‐Kazooie and the even better sequel Banjo‐Tooie, not much else really comes up to snuff. Original developers Rare were in their heyday in the late ’90s, creating several classics for the Nintendo 64 including but not limited to the Banjo games, Jet Force Gemini, Perfect Dark and of course Goldeneye. Unfortunately, not long after Microsoft entered the home console market with the Xbox, they bought out the company and half of their staff left to form their own companies, most notably Free Radical Design, which was responsible for the aforementioned Timesplitters games until they got bought out. As a result, the next home console Banjo game ended up being delayed until 2008, when Banjo‐Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts landed on Xbox 360, and…didn’t really impress anyone. A major disappointment to fans, then, and a testament to the quality of the first games. There are no further sequels in development, and while there’s still hope in the hearts of some that we’ll one day see Banjo‐Threeie and it’ll be the best thing since sliced bread, perhaps it’s best that don’t.
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