After our Top 10 Franchises That Need A Reboot, we decided to go in the opposite direction and take a look at the franchises that deserve to be put on ice. Whether it’s due to oversaturation, a consistent lack of quality, or if the series has strayed too far from what made it unique in the first place, these 10 franchises have been played out to their limits. Love ‘em or hate ‘em, here are the Top 10 Franchises That Deserve To Die.
10. Guitar Hero
Whenever somebody asks me, “Hey, have you checked out the new Rock Band or Guitar Hero title?!” My immediate response is: “Are they still making those..?” In the case of Guitar Hero, what was once a profitable franchise has now diminished into a constant stream of nothingness. A new announcement of Guitar Hero just doesn’t excite like it used to. The overblown price tag and pay-to-play model that have become the standard are doing only harm to this once juggernaut of the industry. There is VR, though, so perhaps that can milk out some more pennies.
9. Dead Rising
Dead Rising. The name literally beckons itself. This franchise died off when Dead Rising: Off the Record was released, but yet, we still keep seeing sequels. The bland and forced Dead Rising 3, the Christmas cash-in Dead Rising 4; the novelty has, quite simply, just worn off. I’m not saying Dead Rising is a bad series overall- the zany, quirky and colorful settings are still there, but they feel hollow and bitter like a Switch cartridge. All in all, it’s going to take some real magic to put any life back into this lifeless corpse of a series.
8. Mass Effect
If Mass Effect has taught us anything, it’s how not to end a franchise. I had high hopes for Andromeda, really. Everything looked like it was setting up to be a great adventure that players wouldn’t soon forget. But then, it wasn’t. It could have been titled Mass Effect: Another One for all the impact it actually had. Bioware made some choice decisions, and those decisions fumbled in the end. Honestly, I still believe Mass Effect may have one more game left in the tank as a series, but the lifeline is wearing thin. If all else fails, I suppose Bioware could make another Dragon Age.
7. Far Cry
Far Cry, the very name evokes a feeling of a distant second. In fact, the franchise is more like third or fourth in the pantheon of first person shooters. The one thing this series has going for it, unique environments, is the one thing that it never get’s quite right. Most of the Far Cry games bungle the cultural or political implications of their chosen setting in one way or another, overshadowing any of the good design work found in the games. Coupled with the fact that these games tend to be overstuffed with filler side-quests and activities and you end up with an experience that is mostly dull and only occasionally interesting. The series did spawn the Blood Dragon DLC which everyone should be thankful for but then the series failed to work in any of the humor of the DLC into the following games at all. And then there’s Far Cry Primal which was an example of a studio grasping at straws when looking for a concept for their flagging series.
6. Mario Party
It’s party time! At least, it was, back in 1999. This iconic party game series for Nintendo has dwindled into a running joke, which is sad considering how much fun was to be had in the original games. Reviews for the series have been steadily declining as Nintendo has tried to recapture its popularity, and with Mario Party: Star Rush on the way for 3DS, it doesn’t look like they’re going to succeed (again). The biggest issue with the series is its knack for trying to force some unique gameplay element into the already solid formula; gamers don’t really need a special reason to return to this party franchise, they just want to be able to have a fun excuse to treat their friends like mortal enemies. The game boards have become less interesting, the competition between friends less intense, and, far worse, the mini-games just aren’t as fun. When all you need is Mario Party 2 to get your fix, it’s about time to put the long-running and long-disappointing series to rest.