It’s one thing to make a good game; it’s another to follow up with a better sequel. Many have tried and many have failed, but there are some developers who’ve hit the nail on the head. Whether it’s revamping the whole game, building on its foundations, or merely crafting a better story, we take a look at some of the best game sequels we’ve played.
Batman: Arkham City
Batman: Arkham Asylum finally showed us how it felt to step into the Dark Knight’s shoes thanks to the gadgets, the grappling hook and stealth techniques in the game. It also gave us a unique look at the insides of the home for the criminally insane. Arkham City opened up a whole new world for us to use all the Bat’s tricks and toys. There’s nothing like soaring over Gotham and transitioning into an aerial takedown of a random gang of thugs and then beating the daylights out of each and every one of them without taking a single hit.
The story of a theoretical physicist, a crowbar, and unforeseen consequences. It was hard to imagine how Valve would better themselves after Half-Life; and yet, they did. Half-Life 2 upped the game with its gripping story, complex physics engine, facial expression features, and even managed to create a weapon as iconic as the crowbar… the gravity gun.
Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
Just when you thought Link had been through every kind of adventure possible, his latest one was perhaps his most dangerous: open world! Breath of the Wild is hands down one of the best open world games ever created; it’s a pity that Nintendo isn’t that prevalent in India, because everyone needs to experience this work of art. I’ve never seen a game with a better physics engine. Link slips off climbing surfaces when it rains, lightning has a chance to hit you if you equip a metal weapon; the attention to detail is just insane.
Middle Earth: Shadow of War
At first glance, Shadow of Mordor looked like nothing more than a Lord of the Rings skinned Assassins Creed. But it was only after you played the game was when you realised that its true beauty lay in its unique Nemesis System. The enemy AI would remember previous encounters, come back for revenge and even remember the scars you gave them. You could bend enemies to your will, help them rise through the ranks and take down the orcs from within. With the release of Shadow of War, we see how Monolith has evolved their prized Nemesis System. You can now command entire legions of orcs and wage full scale wars against enemy strongholds. You can even have an inside man who’d sabotage enemy defences for you. Oh, and let’s not forget, you can brand a f#@$ing Balrog!
Red Dead Redemption
It’s hard to remember a decent Wild West themed game before Red Dead Revolver, but even so, it was an average game overall. Then came Red Dead Redemption and boy what a storm it kicked up. The game was so much more than just GTA: Wild West. The heists, random encounters and play-how-you-want features made tRed Dead Redemption so immersive that it’s probably the closest thing to Westworld we have; well, until the release of Red Dead Redemption 2.
Grand Theft Auto 3
After plying GTA V, it’s hard to imagine that the series’ arcade-styled roots with a bird’s eye view and gameplay that revolved around getting high scores. It was GTA 3 that first gave us the third-person open world that we love to destroy. A game which almost let you do whatever you wanted. Steal a car, raid a military base, stockpile deadly ammunition; but there was one rule you had to follow- don’t jump into the water.
Watch Dogs 2
Watch Dogs was one of the biggest disappointments of 2014. Besides the repetitive gameplay and the terrible ‘hacking’ system, the protagonist had the personality of a particularly-broody cardboard box. However, Watch Dogs 2 was everything the previous game should have been. With a more interesting protagonist, cooler equipment and an engaging story arc, Watch Dogs 2 managed to stand out of the cluster of open world games we’ve been bombarded with recently. Sure, it does reek of ‘Millenialism’, but so does the internet.