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Top 5 Video Games Reboots -- (Not So) Total Recall

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Posted August 3, 2012 - By Brittany Vincent





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To create something beautiful, sometimes you have to destroy -- or at least go in a new direction. That's been a tried and true strategy for most forms of media, especially video games, over the years. When the same format begins to grow stale, it's time for a change.

And in Hollywood, even when the original is still fresh, it's time for a change too. Regardless of the need, however, sometimes a reboot can completely revitalize an IP that's been barking up the tree for so many years. We've found a few shining examples that give us hopes for the remakes of the future, exemplary titles that have been reconfigured into something bigger and better than we ever could have expected.

Here are five spectacular reboots that stand out from the crowd in more ways than one. Oh, to be a current-gen gamer! You young whippersnappers really are getting it all.

Street Fighter IV

Street Fighter IV

It's easy to forget the extremely well received Street Fighter IV as a reboot, but it actually is one. The enormous leap between art styles and the massive overhaul the reputable fighter received was enough to rocket propel it into the favorites list of many a fighting enthusiast. Brand new characters like Crimson Viper, Rufus, and the indomitable Seth rounded out the already robust line-up offered already.

It seamlessly combined new and old school sensibilities to create an accessible, pro-level fighter for players of all skill levels, and of course paved the way for Capcom to further revitalize the game in future iterations. It's definitely a testament to how improving on a classic franchise can completely revamp it in ways that open it up even further to a brand new generation of fans, and Street Fighter IV is still going strong.

Sonic Generations

Sonic Generations

It's been a bad few years for Sonic, especially after his 2006 travesty. The episodic Sonic 4 wasn't too successful at scratching fans' itch for a brand new Sonic adventure (not that game, specifically) and Sega needed a new plan. Why not go back to what worked before and give it a new twist? Sonic Generations was an excellent attempt at re-energizing a tired mascot with far too many attempts at greatness. While it wasn't exactly a traditional reboot, it switched up established stages from the hedgehog's history, letting players experience them in a whole new way.

It was a brilliant exploration of familiar Sonic universe locales and fan-favorite missions, only with new 3D stages and side-scrolling levels that felt nearly as fast as the original Sonic the Hedgehog. While Sonic Generations didn't perfect that certain something we all ran into when we played for the first time, it did conjure some of those special feelings that were all but lost from the Sonic games -- and sometimes that's all we're really looking for from a reboot.

Rayman Origins

Rayman Origins

Rayman, to many of us, was that often insanely rough platformer we yearned to beat senselessly. The entire, colorful world was a cavalcade of inventive sights and sounds, and that's all without even mentioning Rayman himself, who was a refreshing change from the gaggle of other furry mascots and platforming stars.

Fast forward to the present and Rayman Origins effectively rebooted the familiar series in a big way. The vastly overhauled art style and challenging gameplay coupled with a fantastic new origin story with plenty of surprises was a universal hit amongst both newcomers to the Rayman franchise and established players alike, with its tongue-in-cheek humor and addictive platforming. Hopefully it means we'll be seeing quite a bit more of Rayman again in the future -- you know, something that's not a Raving Rabbids game?

Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit Update Adds Unskippable Need for Speed: Shift 2 Commercial

Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit

While the original game was an interesting concept in its own right, Criterion returned to the most thrilling Need For Speed into an even more gorgeous, structured racer with fantastic online capabilities, a soundtrack to die for, and high-octane races that hooked you nearly instantly. Its slick selection of vehicles, integration with friends list and options to challenge friends into blowing past your best times was a celebration of the age of social media and how it could be successfully paired with in-game milestones to create a more immersive experience.

Also, you got to drive fast. Very fast. Careening down the road to Benny Benassi's "Cinema" was certainly a highlight, as the sun peeked over the horizon and the competition disappeared in the rear view mirror.

Who Played The Dogs Out? The Realistic Dogs of Gaming Fallout 3 Dogmeat

Fallout 3

Bethesda swooped in and breathed new life into the classic RPG series, opening the door for brand new adventures through the wasteland, turning the previously top-down isometric trek through irradiated badlands into a fully-rendered third-person shooter/RPG hybrid, even incorporating the talents of Liam Neeson and other voice actor heavy hitters. A shiny new Pip Boy 3000, plenty of quests to embark on, and a brand new targeting system as well as a meatier narrative worked together to weave a riveting tale of life after nuclear war has ravaged the world, and plenty of DLC to boot.

We've chosen but five of what we consider to be exemplary pieces of the video game reboot library, but there are plenty more out there, and still more to come! Franchises like Tomb Raider, Devil May Cry, and other familiar names are throwing their hats into the ring for a fresh start, and we can't wait to see what kind of magic they'll work.

Which ones are you eagerly awaiting? Are you a supporter of gaming reboots? Let us know in the comments below.

Top 5 Video Games Reboots -- (Not So) Total Recall
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