The 10 adventure licences we want Telltale Games to reboot, revive, and revisit
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With the heat on Disney for closing LucasArts beginning to simmer down, it's time for the adventure genre to forget about the past and look to the future.
That future, by and large, lies in the hands of one Telltale Games, which has been doing its brilliant best to keep the genre alive ever since 2005's Bone: Out from Boneville.
So, who better to go back, resurrect, and freshen up some classic (and not-so-classic) adventure licenses for a whole new generation of gamers?
Here, then, are the top ten adventure franchises we want Telltale to get started on rejuvenating right away.
I think we've waited long enough for another one, don't you?
In the early noughties, two Full Throttle sequels were announced (Payback and Hell on Wheels). Neither of them ever saw the light of day.
Telltale Games could do wonders with this property, starting off by introducing a few more action elements into the game to highlight The Polecats's rough-and-ready lifestyle.
The Walking Dead maker took a shot at that action / adventure hybrid style with Jurassic Park: The Game. Though that ultimately proved a misstep, Telltale would have a great opportunity to rectify that with Full Throttle.Zork
The Zork series just kind of fizzled out without anyone noticing.
For those of you who were paying attention, though, you'll know the series ended with the fantastically funny Zork: Grand Inquisitor and naff Legends of Zork, the latter of which featured awkward micro-transactions that impeded your progress.
It's perhaps a little more The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy in its humour than Telltale's used to, but we're confident the studio could do the franchise justice.
Note the 'Noir' in that heading. We don't want any old Discworld reboot, you see.
Instead, we want Telltale to have another stab at the pulpy, dark, bleak, and utterly hilarious detective series set in Ankh-Morpork.
While Telltale's at it, the company can get Rob Brydon, Kate Robbins, Robert Llewellyn, and Nigel Planer back to reprise their roles, too.
Shadow of Memories
"What? The one released near the PlayStation 2's launch? The one from Konami about time travelling and the Devil?"
Yes, that one, fair reader.
Telltale does episodic gaming right, and Shadow of Memories's era-hopping structure and fragmented narrative would fit the studio's philosophy on multi-chapter works like a particularly snug bug within a perfectly shaped rug.
The story's pretty meaty, too. I mean, how many games do you know of that enable you to wander about a German town across different time periods, solving murder mysteries while avoiding temporal paradoxes?
Because, let's face it, Kojima is never going to do this himself.
With Snatcher, there's at least a hardcore following that want another outing. With Policenauts never getting released in English, however, it's that much more obscure.
Policenauts is basically 'detectives in space', with an Arthur C. Clarke-esque hard sci-fi edge married to the intrigue and investigation.
Telltale has experience in the ol' crime drama department through the CSI and Law & Order games, so transferring the action to a future LA shouldn't be too tricky.
The classic. The originator. The untouchable.
What better series to reboot from scratch as a sign of Telltale's dominance in the adventure game genre than this venerable delight?
A multi-person adventure where decisions you make affect various outcomes in the game (including who survives to see the credits), this represents the perfect opportunity for the Back to the Future boys to really stretch themselves.
I'm expecting plenty of modern B movie references and horror genre tropes, thank you. Especially ones just ripe for ridicule.
Portopia Renzoku Satsujin Jiken
Another detective-based entry for you here...
Like Policenauts, this adventure game never made it over to the West. Which is, of course, a giant shame.
Anyway, the title translates into English as The Portopia Serial Murder Case, and though the game is little known outside of Japan, this first entry in the trilogy was critically acclaimed in its country of origin.
With Enix on publihsing duties, Yuji Horii of Dragon Quest fame handling development, and Chunsoft taking care of the ports, it became a beloved series which helped spawn the visual novel genre.
A remake of the series for the West would be just smashing, Telltale! Please.
All three Gabriel Knight games required you take part in some of the clearest examples of a phenomenon I like to call 'adventure game developer profiling'.
In this type of game, the puzzles are so illogical that you need to figure out how the developer is trying to trick or mislead you, rather than try to solve the puzzle itself.
To find the solution, you have to be the type of person that wants to spend his time combining sticky tape with mischievous cats to make unlikely disguises (an actual solution to a conundrum in the third game).
Put simply: games like Gabriel Knight just don't exist any more.
Telltale should take this specific kind of gameplay 'difficulty' - and the series's penchant for the mystical - and make it the foundation of a new game. Oh, and deliberately focus on the obscure and the unexplained.Loom
Brian Moriarty took the lead on Loom, and has categorically stated that there were ideas floating about for two sequels. These were called Forge and The Fold.
If you've not played Loom, then all you need to know is that it was a bit mystical, a bit New Age, a bit touching, and a bit good.
In truth, it went through multiple revisions after it was released. But we don't want a reboot; we just want to see what happens next in its already-established highly intriguing world.
Leisure Suit Larry
I think there's still the potential for a very good Leisure Suit Larry game - the IP's just not in the right hands at the moment.
The problem with the franchise is that it's wandered down a path where crude jokes and smutty gags are king, all at the expense of the character of Larry. We just don't find him lovable any more, especially now he's a creepy middle-aged man that belongs on a list.
Give Telltale the licence, hand the team the freedom to tell a (still-humorous) story about this rather miserable character, and you're onto a winner.Those are our choices, but what would yours be? Which adventure games would you like to see make a return? Let us know in the comments section below.