First post, by dr_st
*apologies if such a topic already exists*
I guess sequels to popular games usually fall into one of a few categories:
* Same formula, adjust for better technology (e.g., Duke Nukem II which kept the Duke Nukem gameplay only with better graphics, sound, music, or the second Keen trilogy compared to the first)
* More of the same, basically an "expansion pack" in the form of the sequel (e.g., Spear of Destiny, DOOM II, Descent II Earthworm Jim 2, etc.)
* Remakes in a somewhat different genre like moving to 3D (Duke Nukem 3D, Rayman 2)
And then I was thinking about sequels that totally outshine the first game, usually by expanding on the existing formula but with so much better technology/gameplay, that they make you think: "This is how the game was supposed to be", or "This just has everything that is needed".
Off the top of my head I can come up with a few examples:
- Warcraft II - which in addition to better graphics, enriched the gameplay so much with air and sea combat, more spell variety, better command interface, contributing to a much more complete experience.
- Dangerous Dave in the Haunted Mansion, aka Dave 2 - which went from a basic, generic and primitive platformer into a much more realistic, challenging, gory and atmospheric environment.
- The Incredible Machine 2 - although a lot of the parts were already added in "The Even More Incredible Machine", this one takes it to another level, with even more parts, scenery elements, head-to-head play, a guided tour (complete with speech) and a puzzle creation mode that actually allows you to program solutions and play them like any built-in puzzle. The graphics and sounds are also greatly improved. When playing this I really got the feeling that it had everything a game like TIM could need. No wonder that all the later versions (TIM3, "Contraptions" and "Even More Contraptions" did not introduce any more elements, just modified graphics and different puzzles.
- Prince of Persia 2 - to me probably the best example of the above. The first game feels amazing, until you play the second and you realize just how monotonous and repetitive the first one is. PoP1 had but two level types (which were basically the same except graphics), and a few focused special events like the shadow, the mouse, and Jaffar, PoP2 had three main level types, each of which looked different and felt different as far as enemies and traps go, special events almost in every level, much deeper combat mechanics, a first and last levels which were nothing like the others, and puzzles which were quite tricky to solve. The beautifully drawn and narrated cut-scenes, and the great ambient music which fit in perfectly with the environment were just the icing on the cake.
So what do you think? Do you agree with the above examples? And what were some such examples to you? (oldies preferred, of course, since we are on Vogons, but not limited to). 😉
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