I think every gamer has their own list of retro games that need a sequel. E3 often inspires big hopes that we’ll *finally* see a new iteration of a favorite game that’s gone underappreciated or ignored for years. Usually games in that camp didn’t sell well despite their cult following, and/or have the rights to the IP tied up. Sometimes the company that owns the property just isn’t interested in creating a new game! But dreams can come true-Metroid Dread was just announced, so I’m feeling insanely optimistic for the return of other beloved series. Let’s ignore all obstacles and think big-these are my personal favorite retro games that need a sequel!
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10. Beetle Adventure Racing (N64)
If you’ve played this game, you understand the glory. One of the most underrated N64 games is also one of the best! This arcade style racer leans hard into the “adventure” part of its title with insane courses, weapons, and shortcuts, all while driving Volkswagon Beetles. The controls are buttery smooth which makes driving your Beetle a joy throughout the very lengthy and scenic courses. There’s even a T-rex in one level, so that’s at least 1,000 bonus points right there! If you’re a fan of racers of any kind, this one is worth your time. And it’s still pretty cheap to find these days.
The ideal sequel would include: HD graphics, even crazier shortcuts, a lot more tracks and weaponry, online play, more general zaniness
9. E.V.O. Search for Eden (Super Nintendo)
We’re really in “cult classic” territory here with this lesser known SNES title, folks! One of my best childhood friends had this game and we both fell in love with it, playing it for hours and hours during summer vacation. E.V.O. is a very creative action pseudo-RPG that takes you on a tour through major geologic eras of Earth as you evolve from a simple fish all the way up to a human. Each enemy you defeat gives “EVO points” to purchase specific evolved characteristics, making you more powerful and thus better able to win natural selection (which in video game form means beating a tough boss, of course). Granted, it’s not really scientifically accurate at all, but hey, I was a Biology teacher for 13 years and I love it! A bit repetitive but very charming and insanely creative, it’s ripe for a sequel. Maybe developed by an indie studio?
The ideal sequel would include: different geologic eras, more animal phyla, different evolution options, and more varied gameplay. The charming sprite-based graphics need to stay!
8. Mystical Ninja/Goemon’s Great Adventure
You can’t play a Mystical Ninja game without being charmed. They’re colorful, silly, over-the-top, and here in the US, poorly translated, which makes the games all the more endearing. The gameplay is always zippy and enjoyable, and the soundtrack just stellar. We’ve actually only received a handful of titles from the series, the most recent of which were the excellent Mystical Ninja and Goemon’s Great Adventure on the N64. Even in Japan where those titles were followed by a few more releases, Mystical Ninja has been dormant for close to 20 years! It’s time to revive it, folks. I’d love either a 3D adventure or 2D sidescroller-I enjoyed the heck out of both on the N64!
The ideal sequel would include: a new playable character in addition to the original (beloved) four, new settings around Japan, new weapons and abilities, a better camera system, and a purposefully botched script to keep things humorous
7. Quackshot (Sega Genesis)
If you’ve read about my Sega Genesis Nostalgia, you know much I love Quackshot. It’s essentially Donald Duck meets Indiana Jones meets early Metroidvania-style gameplay. Trust me, it all works! The animation is absolutely stunning and the soundtrack is lots of fun. The light Metroidvania gameplay elements work well, as you travel all over the world and open up new areas within each over time. Each level and boss encounter is also very atmospheric and enjoyable. Disney IPs are definitely tricky to manage, but I would kill for another entry from a talented studio!
The ideal sequel would include: new locations around the world, a better checkpoint system, more varied weaponry, and more use of the chili pepper-induced “Quack Attack” because it’s awesome
6. Wave Race 64 (N64)
Okay, I’m aware this game already has a sequel. But Blue Storm never really “clicked” with me like the original did! Wave Race 64 is easily still one of my top 10 N64 games of all time. The water physics were astounding, the tracks creative and beautiful, and the controls easy to pick up but tough to master. The announcer’s voice also added a lot of silly fun to the game. I want an arcade-style entry similar to the first game on the Switch!
The ideal sequel would include: realistic water physics, way more tracks and racers, new mini-game modes, the same voice announcer, and a return of the cheat to ride the dolphin!
5. Eternal Darkness (GameCube)
I don’t think I’ve seen a list of retro games that need a sequel without Eternal Darkness. If you’ve played this game, it sticks with you! (the bathtub scene…). I didn’t get to experience it until the waning days of the GameCube, but this Lovecraftian horror game is still genuinely scary, and the time-hopping, character-swapping story intriguing and well told. The most notable, and perhaps best, part of the game is the “sanity effects”. Rather than losing health when hurt by monsters or obstacles, you first lose sanity. This results in a host of devious and clever gameplay tweaks that mess with your mind: the walls bleed, you hear screams or laughter, the screen tilts, and there’s even a “blue screen of death” and fake memory card erasure! There have actually been a few attempts at a sequel called “Shadow of the Eternals”, but the current status doesn’t look great. Try out the original if you’re a horror fan!
The ideal sequel would include: story connections to the first game, but new time periods, new characters, and most of all NEW SANITY EFFECTS!
4. Diddy Kong Racing (N64)
Another underrated N64 game that we *almost* got a sequel to! (you can check out some screenshots of the cancelled Donkey Kong Racing in the excellent GameCube Anthology). DKR is extremely unique in its single player mechanics with a fun adventure mode, silver coin challenges, boss fights, and diverse character roster (TipTup the Turtle is my boy). The hub world was a joy to explore, and you could race as a kart, hovercraft, or plane, which was very cool! As long as you had enough “golden balloons” you could tackle levels and worlds in a variety of orders, too. There are now so many more characters in the Donkey Kong Country and Rare universe that could be added to the roster with a sequel. I’m thinking a joint game between Rare and Nintendo, since Microsoft and Nintendo seem to be playing very nice right now? Let’s make it happen!
The ideal sequel would include: an expanded roster of DKC/Rare characters, more worlds to race, at least one extra vehicle, an additional “challenge” in each world, way more TipTup the Turtle
3. Chrono Trigger/Chrono Cross (SNES/PS1)
Chrono Trigger remains my favorite RPG of all time to this day. It’s special beyond words, and I will forever love the characters, story, world, soundtrack, and gameplay of the original game. So I was psyched when Chrono Cross released on the Playstation! While the sequel was beautiful in so many ways, it went in a very different direction in terms of story and characters. Yes, it tied to the first game, but in a pretty dang convoluted manner that literally requires guides to fully understand. The rumored third game, “Chrono Break”, has come in and out of the rumor mill more times than I can count, but seems pretty firmly locked in development hell. Let’s get it up and running again! (hey, a man can dream). In the meantime, I’m very happy and proud to have backed the phenomenal looking Sea of Stars, a sort of spiritual successor to Chrono Trigger.
The ideal sequel would include: more direct connections to Chrono Trigger, time travel, a simple but involved battle system (with continued non-random battles), lovely new characters, beautiful graphics, and the return of Frog, somehow
2. Super Mario RPG
Sweet mother Mario RPG is amazing. It’s one of my all time favorites to this day. Anytime I start the game, I want to play it to completion! (which is often-it’s one of my most comforting games too). The characters and graphics are beyond charming. The mechanics are a blend of Mario platforming and a unique and innovative battle system, all with a stellar soundtrack. Such care went into crafting this story and world, and it shows in every aspect of the game. This is Nintendo and Squaresoft firing on all cylinders while at their 16-bit pinnacle. While Paper Mario and the Mario & Luigi games are lovely in their own way, we’ve never seen a true Super Mario RPG 2. It’s one of the top retro games that need a sequel!
The ideal sequel would include: more playable characters from the Mario universe, charming old-school graphics, new ways for battles to be interactive, a sharp, fourth-wall-breaking sense of humor, and of course, GENO
1. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
I love Star Wars. I’ve seen most of the movies an embarassing amount of times, have numerous Star Wars shirts, still have my figures from when I was younger, and enjoy even the less than stellar Star Wars games. It’s all just so fun and whimsical. So I literally bought my original XBox just to play Knights of the Old Republic! Set 4,000 years before the events of the original trilogy, it did not disappoint. I was addicted and kept staying up until ungodly hours of the night because I wanted more of the characters, world, and gameplay. It also had one of the best twists in gaming at the time, just as shocking as the end of Empire Strikes Back.
The sequel was also really good and absurdly addictive, despite not being *quite* as polished. All of the lore established here was spectacular, and most Star Wars fans (myself included) will tell you that these stories best both the prequel and sequel trilogy of films, and stand firmly alongside the original trilogy in terms of greatness.
Knights of the Old Republic is THE retro game that needs a sequel, my friends. EA’s hold on Star Wars expires soon, so maybe a brave studio will step up and make a true KOTOR 3! And while we’re at it, how about a new cinematic trilogy with the games as a base?
The ideal sequel would include: more information on fates of characters from the original games, improved combat, more involved side quests, stories set in new parts of the Star Wars universe, more HK-47
Are you interested in seeing another entry for any of the games in this list? What are other retro games that need a sequel, in your personal opinion? I’d love to hear in the comments below!