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Posted March 16, 2017 by Ashwar Jacobs in Feature
 
 

5 franchises that will probably outlive us all

Remember the first time you got your hands on a controller, jumped into a whole new world with characters you’ve never heard or seen before, learning about entire universes and forming bonds with certain characters and enduring emotional turmoil when significant events snatch them from your new reality? I remember them fondly. For some, it’s synonymous with a very first kiss or a book that lifted a veil from your eyes and made you see the world in a different light. And until today, we still get to interact with certain characters who have progressed and evolved with the relentless forward march of technology.

Some game franchises have taken the opportunity to alter the DNA of iconic protagonists and their worlds to adapt to this ever-changing terrain, making it easy for players of old and new to engross themselves in the games entirety. New features, refined gameplay, additional movement and skills, eye watering graphic representations and layered story arcs with little nuances stretching all the way back to the story’s conception, and beyond.

With the release of the Switch and all its titles, including The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, We are reminded of these humble beginnings with the first iterations of the game built in the limited pixel aspect ratios of yester year. Over the years we’ve seen them grow into the multi-faceted masterpieces we get to enjoy today, and in some instances, they exceed our expectations and some end up being a bit lackluster. Because of the loyal following though, the failures tend to get ignored because of the preferred game modes and features the games may have, which tends to lead to good sales figures and the knowledge that by the next year or two, we’ll see the next addition to the franchise.

Needless to say, some games have become such a mainstay in annual game purchases purely for reputation, loyal following and recently, the competitive aspect of eSports giving the game more gravitas. So today, we’re going look at games that will most probably live well beyond our mere mortal existence and still be played by our great grand-children, or cockroaches after a world leader decides that the human gene pool needs some cleansing.

Call of Duty/ Battlefield

Of course these two are first on the list. The most played game franchises in circulation today with a healthy competitive eSports contingent and large multiplayer base, we can expect the great pew pew war machines to be played long after we’ve been put in the ground, or cremated, or majestically have your corpse lit on a raft cast out to sea with a well-placed flame arrow (one can dream).

Yes, some versions of the game may have been underwhelming in terms of singleplayer story and content, but that’s not the reason why most players spend money on the game for. Even if the games took a step back into the dawn of all-out war, every rendition so far has been well received. The possibilities are endless.

So expect this to be played by your offspring while you look for your dentures under the couch. Who knows, we might even get something as crazy as a cross over…

EA Sports games

These you can refer to as a certain viral infection that inhabit the human body and rears its head in little blister cluster form on various parts of the body. It’s not going away, it’s here to stay, make peace with it. Unless the publishers do some irreparable damage that ultimately destroys the game. Seeing as there aren’t many other options for certain sports games out there though, my guess is players will continue to purchase and play til the coming of the flying spaghetti monster.

Again, the multiplayer aspect is what pits these games as titles that are in it for the long haul. Like live versions of the sports, there will be generations of fans showing love for the beautiful game.

Final Fantasy

We can argue that the genre will soon, or already has been, saturated to the extent that we’re spoiled for choice and can easily jump from one title to the next, but there is THE fantasy role-playing game that will be on everyone lips since it’s conception to this very day. Final Fantasy has entertained players for decades and has evolved in leaps and bounds in all aspects of the game. Each new addition brings along new characters and stories of old all packaged in a legacy event if you will.

Chances are, we’ll see the digits at the end of the title reaching triple figures if the developers continue producing a compelling experience. So, technically, it’s never really the FINAL fantasy.

Halo

I think it’s safe to say that Master Chief is immortal, the universe he’s pitted in is vast and dynamic and like war, the story could be never ending. Many may dispute the franchises inability to be innovative, but because the endings of most Halo games tends to leave everything open to interpretation, it’s clear that we won’t see an end to the game’s lifespan anytime soon, or ever.

Like most of the games in this list, the multiplayer commands a big role in the title’s longevity and constant support offered to all their creations can see this franchise chugging along for years to come.

Mario Everything

I remember my first experience with the adventurous plumber fondly. Spending entire afternoons into the late night going through level after level trying to find my elusive princess, always ending up in another castle that looked remarkably like the previous one. Mario is a true testament to the evolution of gaming. From side scrolling to large open expanses in level design, 8bit to billion polygon renditions, there’s arguably no area of the gaming industry that this franchise has not touched.

It has been over two decades since Super Mario Bros. and none of them have been without a new version of Mario and his colourful wacky universe. From racing to beat’em up, and now expanding to other platforms, the little Italian has seen and been through it all, and I’m pretty sure he’ll be going on unaged through the centuries.

Can you think of any other franchise that refuses to kick the bucket? Share your ideas, there might be quite a few we may add to the list.

Honorable Mentions: Grand Theft Auto and Sims





Ashwar Jacobs

 
I Game, I Design, I wish I could Game Design