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VG247's The Best Games Ever Podcast – Ep.21: The best dead game you'd buy a console for if it came back

What franchise do you want to see rise from the grave?

The PlayStation 3 was a strange thing. The console, arriving late to the party that the Xbox 360 kicked off quite brilliantly, was a big deal. Certainly, in Sony-owned countries like the UK, it seemed everyone was waiting for it. It didn't really matter that the launch line-up was a bit naff, that the console itself looked hideous, or that it was ridiculously expensive. The follow-up to perhaps the greatest console of all time, the PS2, was a huge deal.

But what exactly were people desperate to play on their new PS3? I was at the March 2006 UK launch, somewhere in London, probably in a store that no longer exists and is now a Greggs. While there we interviewed the now Stadia-failer Phil Harrison – who is essentially a giant. I'd never spoken to a man so intimidatingly large before. Phil, as big a deal as he was in his PlayStation days (lots of ducks, etc) was not my highlight of the evening. Oh no. It was the public. More specifically, the actual batshit reasons some of them were buying a new PS3 a billion pounds.

One person, a young man with a pencil-thin moustache, quite enthusiastically told me: "Sonic." This took me by great surprise, so much so that I almost laughed for the first time since BBC2 comedy show "Fist of Fun" aired in 1995. But I digress. This person was queueing for hours in order to spend £425 (plus the price of the game) to play a utterly terrible Sonic game, which everyone knew was terrible as it had been released on the Xbox 360 the previous year.

A lot of people in the queue couldn't even name a single game they were buying, simply saying something about Blu-ray and FIFA – although the first FIFA on PS3 was some six months away from releasing. No bother.

Ridge Racer 7 was right there, at launch. But no, of course no one mentioned it. However, of all the reasons I was told as to why people were buying a PS3 at launch, one took the crown as the most bizarre, nonsensical bit of accounting I'd ever heard.

"Yeah, I worked out that I can save the money I was going to spend on a laptop by just buying a PS3," a man told me. "I'll do all my work on the PS3. Just need to plug in a keyboard. Got a printer ready to go," he added. I nodded politely and walked away.

To my knowledge, no wordprocessor of any form was released for the PS3 (not unless you got Linux installed on it). I hope you installed Linux and worked your little heart off, man. I really do.

Anyway. Welcome to VG247's The Best Games Ever Podcast: Ep.21 - The best dead game you'd buy a console for if it came back.

Please do let us know what you think of the show – and if this is your first time listening, do go back to listen to the previous episodes. If you’ve got suggestions for topics, we’d love to hear them. To be clear, here, no one has sent in a single suggestion. I'm starting to think no one reads this. Which is rather sad.

“What is VG247’s Best Games Ever Podcast?” you ask while pondering just how awful the PS3 launch line-up was and how the whole thing was saved by it being a blu-ray machine. Anyway, this podcast, which is why you're on this page, is essentially a 30-minute panel show where people (me and some others on VG247) decide on the best game in a specific category. That's it. It's good. Listen to it.

We’ve got some details on the show’s content below (if you want to get a refresher before heading to the comments to make a wonderful, considered post or don’t want to listen but do want to know what games we picked), so if you want to avoid spoilers, don’t scroll past this fan-made creation of what Chris Bratt would look like if he had a PS3 for a head, but his actual head's soul was trapped inside it. (Support friends of VG247, People Make Games, on Patreon).

Chris Bratt with a PS3 head

The best game dead game you'd buy a console for if it came back

This is the topic of Episode twenty-one of VG247’s Best Games Ever Podcast. Here’s a rundown of who picked what.

Tom - Ridge Racer

Is there another game series that screams launch title more than Ridge Racer? It was not only a launch game for the original PlayStation; it was THE launch game for the original PlayStation. It proved what that console could do and sold an entire generation on the new console in a market that had been dominated by SEGA and Nintendo.

Alex – Time Crisis

I've picked Time Crisis, but I have to level with you: this pick is really all about a whole genre, which is home ports of light gun arcade shooters. These things have been around since the days of the NES and Duck Hunt, and entered a sort of heyday during the PS1 and PS2 eras, but then in the PS3 era it seemed to die out. For my money, it also died out through no fault of its own.

Light gun games were the victim of a range of circumstances. For a start, they're incompatible with modern LCD and LED flat-screen displays without a whole truck-load of cumbersome sensors - which is how Time Crisis 4 shipped on PS3. I'd also wager that the genre suffered as a result of the great Guitar Hero crash - that is, the period when, after years of plastic guitars, drums, fitness boards, skateboards, and even Wii Remote enclosures in the shape of guns to play crappy-feeling pointer-based shooters, people just got bored of buying plastic tat. All of that stuff went down the pan, and took Light Guns down with it.

But the time is now for their return. A technical solution has been created for the hardware incompatibility problem, and there are many thirty-somethings with huge light gun nostalgia. I'd buy any machine that managed to get a new Time Crisis, Point Blank, Virtua Cop, or even just remasters of the classic games. I'd pay a king's random.

Connor – Def Jam

Look, let's not mess around here. Def Jam was only really good once. However, it was damn good with Def jam: Fight for NY. It was the full package, a wild idea pulled off perfectly. Sure it's a bit dated but it's old as heck, man. That's why if they made a new one, with a new cast of modern artists, updated gameplay, and the same slick style I'd buy a whole new console quicker than you could throw Snoop Dogg out of a three story window. I'd even buy a Nintendo Console.

Makes it even worse, more so than the other good suggestions, is that every now and again some guy on the official Def Jam Twitter account will post something like "Hey, where would you like the next Def Jam game to be set, Chicago or Philly?" They've done this like 10 times now. It's gone from raising hype to rubbing it in our faces. Make a new one, please.

Come back in a week for another episode of VG247’s Best Games Ever Podcast.

About the Author
Tom Orry avatar

Tom Orry

Editor-in-Chief

Tom has been in games media for longer than he cares to think about. He runs VG247 and likes to post articles about what things were like in the old days. Formerly a Football Manager addict, he now spends his free time tweeting about the classic PGR series.

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