News Article

Feature: Five Dormant Franchises That Deserve a Comeback on PS4

Posted by Sammy Barker

Daydream believer

The industry may be fixated on reboots at the moment, but not every dormant series demands a full stylistic overhaul. Indeed, there are plenty of brands that have been sitting quietly on the sidelines for several years, waiting patiently in the wings to prove their worth once again. With the impending PlayStation 4 currently making a late scramble towards the retail touchline, we figured that now was an ideal opportunity to consider the five franchises that most deserve a comeback on Sony’s next generation system. But which of our favourites have made the grade?

Bully 2

Your schooldays are supposed to be the pinnacle of your existence, but our academic adventures can’t light a candle to Rockstar’s glorious educational endeavour, Bully. Sharing more in common with the lurid streets of Liberty City than a bona fide boarding school, 2006’s exciting excursion to the Bullworth Academy remains one of the most underappreciated gems in the PlayStation 2’s bulging back catalogue, making it ripe for a scholarly sequel on PS4.

There are numerous directions that gaming’s most controversial company could adopt with a new entry, but we reckon that a college-shaped successor would fit the bill best. Imagine the gross out gags and egregious escapades of a teen movie, combined with the sharp sarcasm of the Houser brothers. Interacting with campus clowns, sparring for studious superiority, and saving face amongst different cliques would form the perfect fodder for a follow-up, and we sincerely hope that Rockstar’s reading.

Gun 2

Believe it or not, there was a time when Activision was willing to bank on original properties not already belonging to larger entertainment enterprises. Gun, an enjoyable excursion to the American Old West, was one such example, concealing your poorly pedicured feet inside the spurred boots of Colton White, an apache adventurer with a fondness for lethal whiskey bombs and poker tournaments.

While the excellent Red Dead Redemption may have surpassed the third-person escapade in the competitive six shooter segment, we still reckon that there’s plenty of room for a new Western release in the three-letter series. An emphasis on gunplay over adventuring – perhaps switching to a first-person perspective – could give the series a new lease of life, and ensure that we’re chucking the prettiest Courvoisier-coloured projectiles on PS4.

Half-Life 3

Arguably the most anticipated sequel of all time, it’s been almost six years since Half-Life 2: Episode Two paved the way for desperate pleas from the first-person franchise’s famished fanbase. Distinguished developer Valve originally intended to release a third instalment in its celebrated series, but the popularity of Portal and its PC distribution platform Steam temporarily waylaid the company’s plans.

But with the PS4 no more than a gravity gun blast away, there’s never been a better opportunity for the studio to discard DOTA 2 and start focusing on the follow-up that really matters. General graphical improvements should help to breathe new life into Gordon Freeman’s alternate history escapade, while the usual lashings of polish and diverse level design would be more than enough to propel the title to the top of our wishlist.

Mirror’s Edge 2

Faith and her colourful collection of free-running friends promised so much in 2008. As the star attraction in Electronic Arts’ impressive ensemble of original content, Mirror’s Edge quickly formed a fanbase of out-of-puff platformaholics. Sadly, the title’s disastrous commercial performance quickly put a bullet in the franchise before it hit second gear – but with the PS4 knocking back fluids in preparation for a ten-year marathon, we reckon that it’s about time developer DICE sought out its sneakers.

With the original concept still wildly original, the Dutch studio could get away with merely iterating upon its initial ideas to make a super sequel. Drop the dreary Battlefield-infused gunplay from the latter half of the original game’s campaign, and put the emphasis back on the parkour perfection from the opening moments of the adventure. Diverging paths could help to augment a splash of replayability, while simultaneously distilling the drudgery of the path hunting found at times in the first title. Add in online multiplayer races, and you’d find us waiting at the starting line with an open wallet.

Shenmue 3

We’d like to think that Yu Suzuki’s financially crippling opus Shenmue concludes with Ryo Hazuki dropping his arduous pursuit of revenge in favour of a simple existence socialising with sailors, but we’d absolutely love to know for sure. All that’s needed is for someone to stump up the $70 million or so required to finally make it happen. We could probably contribute an elaborate phoenix-patterned mirror to the development costs if that’s any help.

Previous entries in SEGA’s ambitious ‘Full Reactive Eyes Entertainment’ endeavour were well ahead of their time, so we’re not sure that a hypothetical sequel would need to shake things up much. A new city filled with just as much character as previous entries would almost certainly satisfy the franchise’s vocal fanbase, though improvements to the controls and fighting mechanics wouldn’t go a miss. Honestly, we just want to know what happened between the series’ star and Shenhua in that grotto in Guilin. We’ve read plenty of fan-fiction, but it’s not the same.

Which dormant series do you think is due a comeback on PS4? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section and poll below.

Which of the listed sequels would you most like to see on PS4? (65 votes)

Bully 2


Gun 2


Half-Life 3


Mirror's Edge 2


Shenmue 3


None of the above


Please login to vote in this poll.

Sponsored links by Taboola

From the web

User Comments (38)



get2sammyb said:

I voted for Shenmue 3, but I would also do close to anything for a new Bully. I'm sure you guys have plenty of your own personal favourites that you'd love to see on PS4, too. Zone of the Enders was on my original shortlist.



Splat said:

It will probably be the only vote but my vote went to Gun 2.



Scrible said:

There's a reason these have laid dormant for so long, all over rated, Shenmue, after part 2,yeah that's what i want



Mason said:

Parappa, Parappa, Parappa, Parappa.

Of these, I'd go for Bully!



GraveLordXD said:

My vote from this list goes to half-life 3, I also would love Kings Field to make a come back
I also wonder if half-life 3 would be on ps4 if the steambox comes out wouldn't it be an exclusive game?



shingi_70 said:

Wouldn't this list make more sense of old sony franchises.

Also one could argue that Half-life hasn't been buried since it takes place in the same universe as portal.

I voted mirror's edge



WCamicase said:

@get2sammyb There's already a new ZoE in development, but it's still in early development when it appeared for the first time, also the Frames will be different
Dunno if it's a reboot or something, here's an image of what I think to be Jehuty

EDIT: Here's more info on it

Now that I think about it, next month marks an year that I saw these news, time sure flies!



Azikira said:

At least it's nice to see such a pretty diverse spread in the votes! I voted for Gun because it was amazingly fun back in the day :3



rjejr said:


There's finally supposed to be a new movie coming out in 2 years, somebody needs to make a tie-in. I wonder if the UE4 engine can do giant rubber suits?



Valky said:

I must say, a very smart pool this one, and one I actually wish I could just vote them all. That being said, I voted for Shenmue 3, that game for me has that something that is just above any other there, even HL3.



Zombie_Barioth said:

I like how close the results are, theres no overwhelming victor like you see with most polls.

I voted for Bully myself, not my first choice but out of these 5 games thats what'd I choose. Dark Cloud 3 anyone?



rjejr said:

@Zombie_Barioth Dark Cloud 3 would be most welcome, as would Legend of Dragoon 2.

Might as well throw in a new Lunar, Grandia or Skies of Arcadia while Im at it. The new Star Ocean was good.



charlesnarles said:

I'd play Metal Gear Acid 3 on Vita. Afrika 2 would be amazing on ps4... anyone play that? Always wanted another Dark Forces/Jedi Knight series game on a console, too



hamispink said:

A new Crash Team Racing would be a dream come true! (UnKarted anyone?)

edit: also, Pokemon Snap comes to mind. It could be a CRAZY game given the variety of Pokemon available now.



rockman29 said:

"But with the PS4 no more than a gravity gun blast away, there’s never been a better opportunity for the studio to discard DOTA 2 and start focusing on the follow-up that really matters. "

Sammy, what?

Got a great site here, don't say things like that... lol. I'm a super PS fanboy at heart, but I'm a PC gamer too!

DOTA 2 is the biggest MP game on Steam, hardly something that doesn't "really matter."

5x the next-leading top played game on Steam... 270,000 players online "concurrently!" That's a quarter million players playing one game! And a game that is 7 or 8 years old at that!

That is... nothing to scoff at.... Sony should be begging to get DOTA 2 on the PS4, 'nuff said!



hYdeks said:

Shenmue 3! I always wanted to play more after playing Shenmue 2 on Xbox.



GraveLordXD said:

@get2sammyb I haven't been following it to much so I'm not sure exactly what it is, but doesn't valve own half-life and isn't valve=steam? That's why I said it, I agree with you because I think the market its already crowded as it is. But who knows I still don't understand how the 360 is so successful ( nothing against xbox fans) I just don't get it :/



bauckster said:

Great article, great poll! I voted for Bully 2, but would love to see Shenmue 3, Half-Life 3, and even Mirror's Edge 2. Personally, I don't really see the need for Gun 2, but I guess that's me as not the biggest shooter fan ever. (Half-life holds a special place in my heart, though). I guess it's slightly more interesting that Gun is a third-person and not an FPS. I feel like FPS games have to be pretty amazing considering the oversaturation these days.



RaymanFan2 said:

I've played every game that inspired this list except Shenmue
Also, I second MediEvil 3.



Zombie_Barioth said:

@LDXD With the steambox your supposed to be able to play all your steam games on it which means Half-Life 3 wouldn't be exclusive to it, it could be exclusive to steam but that still wouldn't help the steam box much.



Dangert3 said:

I only agree with Shenmue 3 as I was never interested in the other ones but the games I would like a comeback would be:
Bushido Blade
Tourist Trophy
Legend Of Dragoon
Bloody Roar
Omega Boost
Tokyo Xtreme Racer
Shadow Of Rome
Gradius Vl
Power Stone
Rival Schools/Project Justice
Tech Romancer
Plasma Sword/Star Gladiator
Dark Cloud

I know some people liked that Half-Life, Bully, Gun & Mirror's Edge, but I think the games I listed deserve a comback more than those because aside of being dormant for longer, those were part of the greatest age in gaming, just giving my two cents on the subject.
5th & 6th for me will always be my favorite.



jgrangervikings1 said:

Never really got into Shenmue, but I remember being impressed with the graphics. I'd like to see a new Power Stone game, a new Rock n Roll Racing game, a new RC Pro Am Racing Game, Ice Climber, Bad Dudes, Bump n Jump, Super Sprint, Rampart, Super Smash TV, Paperboy, Golden Axe, and Musapey's Choco Marker, and Mars Matrix.



AaronYeager said:

I still remember playing original Shenmue on the Sega Dreamcast. That game was amazing.



Madmanonfire said:

HL3 doesn't belong on this list... It's a PC franchise that got ported to consoles. If that franchise gets a "comeback", the "comeback" would happen on PC, not PS4.

Leave A Comment

Hold on there, you need to login to post a comment...