Sequels – Addition or Replacement?

Sequels usually fall into two camps for me. Those with storylines like adventure games or first person shooters I consider an ‘addition’ to that franchise – even if the gameplay is improved and tweaked, the story gives you reason to go back to the previous entries. On the other hand, sequels in franchises like sports games or racing games are more ‘replacements’ – they bring advances to the gameplay and give you no reason to go back. Occasionally though, a sequel will transcend these definitions and give you enough new gameplay outside of a story to be a great experience without stepping on the toes of it’s predecessor.
One such example is SSX 3.

20170714_071623

The game before it was SSX Tricky, which was just amazing. It was just outrageous in every aspect – the characters, the tricks, the speed, even the soundtrack. This is still the best game I’ve played in terms of pure fun – no complications or distractions, just massive tricks and massive points.
So where could SSX 3 go? There was no narrative so they couldn’t just tweak the formula and put a new story on it. What they did though, was retain enough of the gameplay – the crazy tricks and the races – whilst placing it in a new setting. Here you had a more complete structure to the events in the game, more organised tracks and mountains and just a little bit of an open world feel. It was a stunning game in it’s own right without diluting the simplicity and, frankly, preposterousness of Tricky.

20170714_071604.jpg

I originally played this games on Playstation 2 but have recently picked them up on the cheap for the original Xbox. I’m surprised and pleased to report that they are still fantastic games all these years later! Normally I would only consider one game in this kind of franchise for my All Time Top Games List. If I didn’t use that policy that list would be full of 6 Forza Motorsport games, multiple Mario Karts and a multitude of FIFAs and PESs. But SSX Tricky and SSX 3 are both worthy enough, and different enough, to get separate places on that list.

SSX Tricky Intro from The Gamer Boys on Vimeo.

Now I’m going to head back to Garibaldi and see if I can get back to when I could get well over 1 million points on the way down there!
What about you? Which other sequels have been great without just replacing the game before? Let us know in the comments below.

Advertisements

REVIEW: SSX Tricky

  • Released: 2001
  • Played on: PS2
  • Also available on: Gamecube and Xbox

SSX Tricky.jpg
By Source, Fair use, Link

Short Review: The most pure fun I’ve ever had in a game. Aiming for higher and higher scores and more and more spectacular and ridiculous trick combinations never got old. It wasn’t long before my friends and I were getting 1.5m points in levels that the game only asked for less than 100k!
Review5

REVIEW: Gran Turismo 4

  • Released: 2005
  • Played on: PS2
  • Also available on: –

Gt4 formulagt.jpg
Fair use, Link

Short Review: Great detailed handing and an astounding amount of varied kinds of races. Very much a ‘driving’ game rather than a ‘racing’ game, but the driving was spectacular – a total joy to pound round lap after lap in the endurance races.
Review5

REVIEW: SSX 3

  • Released: 2003
  • Played on: PS2
  • Also available on: Xbox and Gamecube

SSX 3 Race gameplay.png
By Source (WP:NFCC#4), Fair use, Link

Short Review: Took the gameplay of Tricky to the next level with extra kinds of tricks and more complex tracks. Whilst this was much bigger and better it also lost a little something with the simplicity it gave up.
Review5

REVIEW: Dave Mirra Freestyle BMX 2

  • Released: 2001
  • Played on: PS2
  • Also available on: Xbox and Gamecube

Dave Mirra Freestyle BMX 2 Coverart.png
By Source, Fair use, Link

Short Review: Back when these type of tricks-and-achievements games were all over the place this was one of the trickiest to master and for me, the most rewarding. It was able to get you doing crazy stuff without ever completely going nuts – you always felt everything you did was at least theoretically possible in the real world.
Review5

REVIEW: Spy Hunter

  • Released: 2001
  • Played on: PS2
  • Also available on: PC, Mac, Xbox, Gamecube

Spy Hunter (2001) Coverart.png
By Source, Fair use, Link

Short Review: This game wasn’t deep, the graphics were only ok and the story was non existent – but wow was it fun! And the replay value as you tried to nail everything more and more perfectly was great.
Review5