Greetings, folks. It's Friday, which means you're in for another edition of our weekly staff collaboration where we give our opinions on a question related to current gaming news or trends. We call it Shack Chat, and if you spend much time on Shacknews or in the Chatty, you've seen it before. This week, we're going retro.
Question: Which game franchise would you like to see get a retro collection?
The Legend of Zelda (The handheld ones, specifically) - Ozzie Mejia, On a plane
The fun of being in the middle of a vacation flight with free Wi-Fi is that I can jump in on a question that I have a pretty good opinion on.
Nintendo has been halfway decent about allowing people to pick up old-school games, whether it's on the Virtual Console or the Nintendo Switch Online service. But you know what's becoming an increasing rarity? The Legend of Zelda's many handheld titles.
You might be thinking of Link's Awakening, but go farther than that. Think about Oracle of Seasons/Ages, The Minish Cap, Spirit Tracks, and Phantom Hourglass. Sure, some of the controls might have to be redone to allow for traditional (meaning, non-touch) controls, but it's worth it to get to play through these old gems again. We can only revisit A Link to the Past and Ocarina of Time so many times. There are a lot of other Zelda titles worth revisiting via a collection.
Dragon Quest Zenithia Trilogy - Donovan Erskine, now a major frog fan
Dragon Quest 4, 5, and 6, commonly referred to as the Zenithia Trilogy, are some of the best JRPGs ever made. In my journey to play through the Dragon Quest series, I picked up a 3DS so that I could experience the DS remakes from the 2000s. The games still play beautifully nearly two decades later, but are incredibly expensive and hard to track down. A Zenithia Trilogy collection on Switch would be an absolute dream.
Yes, the game’s were ported to iOS, but honestly, I don’t want to play these games on my phone. Square Enix, I would happily pay 40 bucks for these three games bundled together on Switch.
Marvel Games - Blake Morse, Co-EIC
Over the years there’s been a number of licensed Marvel games starting with the 8-Bit era and going all the way up to the present. While it would be a massive undertaking to get all the permissions, it would be amazing to see all the Marvel games in one package. I’m talking about everything from NES games like Silver Surfer and Wolverine, to the Genesis X-Men games and Spider-Man’s Maximum Carnage, all the way up to Xbox 360-era stuff like Deadpool. I doubt it would ever happen, but as a Marvel fan-boy and someone who’s trying to collect superhero video games specifically, I’d really love to see something like this.
Metal Slug - Sam Chandler, Rocket Launcher
Though I’m not quite good at them, I do adore the Metal Slug games. Metal Slug 3 will always hold a special place in my heart. Many a late night with numerous beers were spent fighting through the monsters, creatures, soldiers, zombies and aliens. The game just throws everything at you. While the titles have been re-released over the years, I’d love to see an anthology with every single game and every bonus game mode. Let me storm the UFO mothership as a soldier and give me back Fat Island!
Retro Hockey Collection - Bill Lavoy, Grinder
What I really want is a retro hockey collection. It would include Ice Hockey, Blades of Steel, NHL 94, and a few others. Give it to me in a package on every platform you can. At any given moment I may want to fire up some puck on my Nintendo Switch or PS5 or PC. Just collect the best of the best hockey games of all time and give me the retro package that will speak to my soul.
Shining Force - TJ Denzer, Likes a good fantasy fiction SRPG
There are so many cool games out there I’d love to see spruced up with modern QoL features and brought to new platforms, but Shining Force is one of my top-tier one true loves in retro gaming. I know the games have been offered in sporadic fashion in various Sega packages, but it’s usually just Shining Force 1 and 2. I want more. I would like the whole Shining Force Gaiden collection from Game Gear, Shining Force CD from Sega CD, and maybe even Shining Force 3 from Sega Saturn. Bonus points if they go through the process of sprucing up the units like they did for Resurrection of the Dark Dragon on Game Boy Advance. It would also be cool to see added features like easy mode, challenge modes, sound tests, and galleries. Shining Force is a formative title of my youth and modern tastes. I would be thrilled to see the whole franchise get some Sonic Origins or Capcom Fighting Collection-style love.
Pokemon - Steve "Stevetendo" Tyminski, Retro makes the world go round!
What franchise would I like to see get a retro collection? That is an interesting question as some of the series that I would have suggested are getting collections like Darkstalkers or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. That being said, it would be really nice to be able to play all the classic Pokémon games on one Switch cartridge. If they modernized the old school Pokémon generations, you could play them on a modern system, have the ability to transfer Pokémon to Pokémon Home and be able to trade all kinds of monsters to all kinds of generations. Something similar to this was rumored to be releasing, Pokémon Red, Gold, and Ruby but never saw the light of day. Another franchise that would be cool to see get the retro collection is Metroid. Having the NES, SNES, Game Boy, and GBA games in one place would be great. Honorable mention goes to Snow Brothers, which had arcade versions and a Game Boy version and that would be awesome to play, but it's Capcom and right now, they have no idea what to do with their classic properties.
Silent Hill 1-4 - Dennis White
Silent Hill is almost 25 years old now so I’m going to count it as a retro option. The previous attempt at an HD collection is pretty abysmal. As a fan of watching speedruns of the original Team Silent-led games in the franchise, there’s been complaints about the quality of the HD Collection for quite some time. I would love to see a true version of each title presented in higher quality similar to the modded PC versions of Silent Hill 2 and 3 available now. I’d also like to see the original Silent Hill get some love too in a full blown collection that maybe includes the extended soundtracks for each game. Just put Silent Hill games 1- 4 into a Team Silent collection with the ability to also play on Switch and PC! There’s now an entire generation that may have never played Silent Hill in any form at this point with the last entry in the franchise, Silent Hill: Downpour released over a decade ago. If a Silent Hill remake is truly on the horizon, this would be a great opportunity to bring the original versions of this classic horror franchise back to the forefront.
Tetris - Morgan Shaver, Tetris Grand Master
I’d really love to see a big retro Tetris collection drop with titles like Tetris on NES, Game Boy Tetris, The New Tetris, Tetris DS, even games like Tetris Battle Gaiden, Tetris Plus, Tetris: The Grand Master, and so on and so forth.
Given that Tetris has been around for almost 40 years, there are plenty of retro Tetris games to choose from. Also a lot of lingering nostalgic love for retro Tetris games like NES Tetris with events like the Classic Tetris World Championships (CTWC), so sales wise a retro collection would do pretty well I think. There's definitely a demand.
With the talented people over at Limited Run Games already releasing a physical collection for Tetris Effect, maybe LRG should sync up with The Tetris Company on a retro Tetris collection? I feel like out of everyone, LRG would be the best fit. June 2024 is the game’s 40th anniversary, so there’s plenty of time to get a retro collection ready before then as well.
There you have it, our picks for the game franchise that we'd most like to see get a retro collection. But really, the best part about Shack Chat is hearing what you have to say. Which gaming franchise do you want to see get a retro collection? Hit us up in the Chatty comments and let us know.