I get a warm feeling inside when I see games that I loved as a kid making their triumphant return. Video games were a huge part of my upbringing, and I enjoy seeing the franchises I love come back to life.
Sadly, some franchises return only to fall flat on their face. If you cherish your childhood memories, stay as far away from these video game reboots as possible.
Alone in the Dark (Xbox 360, PlayStation 2, Wii, PC, PlayStation 3)
This fifth installment of the classic survival horror franchise was an attempt to bring the game into the current console generation. While developer Eden Games had some success with the graphics and soundtrack, the rest of the game was subpar at best.
The voice acting and dialogue set a new standard for bad, making the story very difficult to enjoy. To make matters worse, in what seems like an attempt to make a video game aimed at adults, the characters curse more than your favorite rapper. The swearing is completely overdone and it’s actually rather silly.
If you can somehow stomach the voice acting, you’ll still find the plot to be quite unoriginal. This is a very generic horror thriller that lacks any significant depth.
Further, the tedious gameplay isn’t much fun. The only way to kill enemies is by using fire, which significantly limits a player’s actions. Add in a plethora of technical problems, like camera issues and glitches, and Alone in the Dark feels almost unplayable.
Golden Axe: Beast Rider (Xbox 360, PlayStation 3)
I guess this is supposed to be a reboot of the famous arcade franchise, though the title really is the only notable similarity. Golden Axe: Beast Rider moves the famous 2D hack ‘n’ slash adventure game into full 3D. The result is absolutely disastrous.
Boring backgrounds, bad character animations, and constant graphical hiccups create an experience that is very hard on the eyes. Further, low-resolution textures make this game feel downright sloppy.
On top of all that, Golden Axe: Beast Rider just isn’t fun. Developer Secret Level managed to create one of the most frustrating games in modern memory. You’ll constantly find yourself being destroyed by enemies firing from off screen, leaving you to feel completely cheated.
If you’re a fan of the Golden Axe series, stay as far away from this game as possible. It will leave your childhood memories tainted — forever.
Final Fight: Streetwise (Xbox, PlayStation 2)
I love the original Final Fight. To this day, it stands as one of the best 2D brawlers ever made. When Capcom and Secret Level decided to bring the franchise into 3D for the original Xbox and PlayStation 2, I was actually quite intrigued.
Imagining Final Fight as a 3D game really isn’t that hard to do; the problem is that the 3D version we received was Streetwise. The game’s camera often made combat impossible, and the combat areas themselves were just too small to give the game any feeling of freedom whatsoever.
Why have a 3D game if you’re just going to herd all gameplay into a series of tiny areas?
The fighting system in the game may have worked if anything else about the game functioned the way it should. Enemies were boring and repetitive, crushing any fun that could come from the game’s decent combo system. To top it all off, the game just looked awful. The backgrounds could put you to sleep, and some of the character animations look downright amateur.
To make matters worse, Final Fight Streetwise ties itself into the classic game. Players take the role of Kyle, brother of Cody — the hero in the original Final Fight. Thinking about it brings tears to my eyes.