For anyone who considers themselves a connoisseur of Japanese developed video games, two recent news stories in particular probably garnered your attention.
Capcom recently made it known that they plan to take a look at their vault of dormant franchises and figure out a way to bring them back in a major way. The smashing successes of Monster Hunter: World, the Resident Evil 2 remake and Devil May Cry 5 seems like a good enough reason for Capcom to revive a bunch of their IP’s in the same manner as those aforementioned games. One of the IP’s that springs to mind is Okami, an underappreciated gem that recently popped up in the news too. Former Tango Gameworks art designer Ikumi Nakamura and original Okami game director Hideki Kamiya made a bold Twitter proclamation – “Okami is going to be back!”
With all that in mind, there’s a slew of Capcom IP’s that have gone unseen for far too long. Here are 10 of those franchises that are more than ready for a modern day resurgence.
The spiritual successor to the Ghosts ‘n Goblins series arrived in 2001 as a 3D hack ‘n slash romp that was just as hard as the 2D games that inspired it. Maximo: Ghosts to Glory and its sequel Maximo vs. The Army of Zin were two slept-on PS2 releases that were full of charm and quite a challenge to overcome. If Capcom were looking to drop a project that’s a bit more on the “AA” gaming scale, a brand new Maximo would be worth the effort. Something along the lines of 2014’s Strider reboot would suffice – a sequel that retains the best elements of the last two games while also introducing brand new mechanics and crisper visuals. And the super tough difficulty? Maximo just wouldn’t be Maximo without it.
Cody, Haggar, and Guy have managed to hold onto their relevance over the years since they last appeared in a Final Fight game. Cody and Guy have engaged in some intense brawls within Street Fighter, Haggar made quite the (body) splash in Marvel vs. Capcom 3 and a few other folks from Metro City also appeared in other Capcom properties. Seeing as how Sega has given the OK for another Streets of Rage to be produced, it makes a lot of sense for Capcom to give its signature beat ‘em up series the same treatment. Final Fight certainly deserves another go-round. A gorgeous 2D sequel with the return of every playable character (and new ones!) battling against the Mad Gear Gang once again is a simple formula we don’t mind revisiting again.
Another classic Capcom beat ‘em up that’s overdue for a return is Viewtiful Joe! Since it appears that Capcom and the devs at PlatinumGames are in a good place these days, now seems like the perfect time to bring back their joint hero. The original games were chock full of humor, beautiful 3D cel-shaded graphics and a suite of awesome Hollywood-inspired gimmicks and special abilities. A lot of cool big screen advancements and movie genres have become relevant since we last saw Joe, so a brand new game would have to reflect the current age of big screen entertainment with awesome stage spoofs. We’re ready to return to Movieland and save the day once more. HENSHIN A GO-GO, BABY!
Imagine how many heads would explode at the sight of a trailer that showcased a new, big budget Lost Planet series entry. The hype would go through the roof if it looked to be on par with the “AAA” quality of Monster Hunter: World. Instead of sticking to the cold locales of the first game, a brand new Lost Planet would be much better off adopting both the arctic and more humid environments featured in the second series entry. Lost Planet’s multiplayer component was super slept on-finding a way to bring it to the next-generation of gaming while also adding a lot to its single-player campaign would do wonders for the underrated third-person shooter series.
Whatever happened to Deep Down? Capcom first announced this brand new dungeon crawling action RPG back in 2013 and ever since then, there’s been radio silence regarding its progress. If Capcom isn’t going to do anything with that forgotten IP, then they should think about revisiting another one of their action RPG staples-Dragon’s Dogma. There was a ton of fun to be had with the original and enhanced version of the game thanks to an impactful combat system, the use of AI-controlled allies and a unique vocation system. At one point in time, Capcom gave Devil May Cry 5 director Hideaki Itsuno the opportunity to spearhead a Dragon’s Dogma sequel. Since DMC 5 has already been put out into the wild, Capcom should revisit their request for Mr. Itsuno and bring a Dragon’s Dogma sequel to fruition.
Hideaki Itsuno can also be credited with working on another lauded Capcom IP-the high school themed, team based fighting game Rival Schools: United by Fate. The concept of pitting different high schools against each other with all sorts of recognizable cliques put in play worked way better than it should have. Project Justice did an even better job of making such a fresh fighting game approach even more fun to play. Capcom should give its fighting game department another huge push in the coming years. The best way to kick that off is by remastering both Rival Schools games and allowing Itsuno to jumpstart development on a third entry in the series.
It seems like samurai’s are making quite a comeback in the world of gaming. SNK’s Samurai Shodown reboot and From Software’s Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, plus the upcoming releases of Ghost of Tsushima and Nioh 2 are proof of that rejuvenated trend. Capcom should also throw their horse into the race with an all-new Onimusha, which is extremely overdue. The 2019 remaster of the first game was a nice reminder of just how cool the IP’s mix of melee combat and survival horror elements were and still are. Onimusha would be much better off with a full-fledged reboot that introduces longtime fans to a newer rendition of Samanosuke Akechi to eliminate the demon hordes with. Since longtime Capcom developer Yoshinori Ono isn’t doing anything of note with Deep Down, it sounds like he’d be the perfect one to put onto this fantasy project. He worked on three games in the series, after all.
Falcon. Wang-Tang. Rouge. Ryoma. If all those names ring a bell, they you must have owned a Dreamcast and played the hell out of the Power Stone series. Capcom’s open-arena brawlers were such a breath of fresh air when they originally released. The original game and the 4-player enabled sequel featured a likable cast of characters, a cool collection of weapons and items to utilize and a battle announcer we can still hear shouting in our memories. A brand new Power Stone sounds like the perfect Capcom exclusive for the Nintendo Switch, doesn’t it? A multiplayer arena brawler with portability capabilities is pretty much the third Power Stone game we’ve always wanted.
Capcom’s far more animated and horror trope filled fighting game franchise Darkstalkers is sorely missed. Morrigan’s guest starring roles in other Capcom fighters were cool and all, but the rest of “The Night Warriors” deserve a new lease on life. If Capcom ever decided to produce a new Darkstalkers game, they need to hand over the development duties to Arc System Works. The studio best known for creating wonderfully animated 2D fighting games could do wonders for Capcom’s brand of moonlit evening brawls. A next-gen Darkstalkers sequel would be just what the doctor…well, thirsty vampire ordered.
The time for a Dino Crisis remake is now! The amazing quality of the Resident Evil 2 remake opened the doors for Capcom to revisit their other classic survival horror titles. Besides Resident Evil 3: Nemesis, another horrific Capcom adventure that deserves a remake is the very first Dino Crisis. Regina, the badass protagonist with the crimson hairdo, is in dire need of a comeback. The best way to do that is by remaking her vicious dinosaur-filled epic with the near perfect “RE Engine.” We might not be too keen on having to deal with nasty raptors and a massive T-Rex all over again. But we’re more than willing to tough it out and confront our reptilian fears in a Dino Crisis remake.