The Current Trend Of “Other” Games

By Ishaan . September 19, 2010 . 6:40pm


I’ll just come right out and say it. I love this recent trend of game publishers taking one of the usual “hallowed” franchises, complete with a rabid fanbase, laying their blueprints out on a large conference table and going, “Hmm. How can we give this a solid kick in the rear?”


Maybe it’s because I’ve recently watched my own favourite game series of all time get turned on its head by a developer no one would ever have associated with it. But lo and behold, Team Ninja gave us Metroid: Other M and I loved it.


Perhaps this is why I found myself in a state of zen-like calm while I watched the TGS trailer for DmC, the new Devil May Cry game in development at England-based studio, Ninja Theory.


The worst had already come to pass. Team Ninja, of all people, without their great and mighty leader of years past — because we all know every good game is developed solely by one person and everyone else gets paid to sit around sipping tea and eating crumpets — had directed a Metroid game and come away with possibly the greatest “tea table upturning” in Nintendo’s recent years — and they’d done a great job to boot.


How much worse could this possibly be? My theory was: “Not even close.”



When I try to rationalize why I legitimately like the direction the new DmC is taking, this is the only answer I can come up with: someone forced me through an experience I might never have tried under normal circumstances, and I ended up loving it. Who’s to say another company couldn’t do the same?


And really, isn’t innovation what we ask for everyday? Isn’t change the first thing we anticipate when we hear an announcement of a new game?


Examining DmC’s trailer, it doesn’t look to me in the least like Capcom and Ninja Theory are trying to forego everything Devil May Cry has stood for over the years. In fact, Twilight-Dante (yes, I will give you that much) comes off as someone who could very possibly evolve into the white-haired, cowboy boot-sporting wisecracker we’ve known for the past decade.


Look at the way he uses his guns. Ninja Theory’s Dante might not be spinning upside down in mid-air while doing it, but he is dual-wielding a pair of pistols and he’s using them much like his future self would — to stall enemies and keep them at bay, rather than inflict any sort of serious damage on them.



No, that’s always been reserved for air-combos and the like, just as it is in DmC. The combat, to me, looks like a variation of what you got in past games. Dante, too, looks like he has a lot more to him that we don’t know about. Rehabilitation centre? Just because Dante’s cool as a cat in his latter years doesn’t mean he was always like that.


No, something drastic had to have happened to turn him that way, and if DmC is in any way related to the series’ regular timeline, we’re going to find out just what it was. Isn’t that exciting?


And if it isn’t related…well, it’s not the same Dante, so why is everyone so upset? At least give the game a shot. Marvel did the exact same thing and it worked out just great, not only giving their characters a fresh start, but also helping lay the groundwork for a lot of Marvel movies.


And DmC isn’t the only game that’s doing it. Yakuza with zombies anyone? Team Ninja announcing a Ninja Gaiden 3 with a closer look at the Ryu Hayabusa behind the mask? Heck, God of War’s been doing it for the last three years.


And yet, I don’t hear anyone complaining about Kratos’s daughter. Is it because the drama has such little effect on the game itself, and that Kratos himself has remained relatively unchanged throughout the series? Why is that so appealing? Don’t you want to watch a character you like grow and evolve?


Sure, this ongoing trend of “Other” games is all part of a collective effort to appeal to a wider audience, and while it may lead to some questionable design choices, I do think it’s a bit of a stretch to act as if nothing good could possibly come of it. Again, look at Metroid: Other M.

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  • Hraesvelgr

    I wish we could “like” articles (outside of the facebook application).

    • I wish we could, “dislike” them. Facebook needs a, “dislike” button as well.

      • Hraesvelgr

        I might say the same thing if no good points were made, but, honestly, “dislike” options are generally counterproductive. Look at sites like GameTrailers or YouTube. People will mass dislike comments or videos solely because they disagree with what’s being said.

        To use DmC as an example again, the only thing known about the game is a change in character design and the fact that it’s made by a developer that is, admittedly, mediocre at best. If people are wary of the game because they don’t think Ninja Theory is a good company, I could understand; however, a majority of the people are hating on it over an aesthetic change without knowing anything beyond that. Hating a game, especially an over the top action game, on appearances alone is just silly.

        • Zeonsilt

          And let’s imagine they change Snake(Metal Gear) or Cloud(FF7) with something like “this”.Result will be the same,or even worse.
          Just bring back old design(younger version),that’s better solution.
          If not this new design,things wil be better.

          • Asura

            Oh no, they changed the uncreative, boring, and later emo Cloud! How terrible!

            If they ever remake Cloud, I hope they “mosey” away from the original as far as possible.

          • IMO, for the ultimate test of faith, Nintendo should redesign Mario into something like “this”.
            Be it smoking Mario, muscle-bound Mario as long as it doesn’t resemble Mario and call him Mario

            Finally, release it under the Super Mario Bros name.

          • karasuKumo

            Guido Mario XD

          • Moriken

            Well, at least Snake looks “American” enough for a “western” audience…

          • capristrider

            There was an uproar was the main hero was changed from Solid Snake to then really unliked Raiden for MGS 2, ironically a young, cocky white haired guy! Infact Devil May Cry and Metal Gear Solid 2 where released in the same year practically months apart!).

          • And oddly, both were the worst entries in otherwise great series.

        • You do realize that one of the main selling points about DMC (I’m talking about the first game, the only real DMC game) was it’s STYLE right? It’s kinda hard to not judge this direction they’re taking when they’ve drained everything that was cool about DMC to begin with…

  • I have to admit, I was first put off on the change of character and I was under the impression that this was a reboot of sorts before the trailer. If it isn’t there can be all sorts of story elements thrown in there to make sense of the whole thing. Personally though, I can’t recall any of the DMC games to have that deep of a story but if this one focus more on story and keeps the same gameplay I have come to enjoy (multiplied by Bayonetta) then I think I can dig it.

    • Congratulations on being the first person to use the word “gameplay” in relation to this topic. Apparently, graphics and storyline are all anyone cares about it seems, hence their rage over the DMC reboot.

      Seriously folks, if you just want a continuing storyline and aren’t worried about how the game actually plays before slagging it off, why not go to the damn movies?

      • mirumu

        Isn’t gameplay the main reservation long term DMC fans have with this reboot? It’s certainly how I feel and mirrors what I’ve been hearing from IRL friends. Ninja Theory have already shown a some prowess in the graphics and storyline department with Heavenly Sword, and from what we’ve seen of Enslaved, but Heavenly Sword’s gameplay was a bit of a mixed bag. DMC without it’s highly polished gameplay wouldn’t really be DMC.

        Aesthetically the design is fairly polarizing though. If they’d shown the footage and never told us it was a DMC game I doubt it would be getting the same level of attention.

      • Forgive us for wanting an actual REASON for the gameplay.

        • thebanditking

          Could not agree more. while game play is key to a game this is not the 80’s and story and design play a large role in new game becoming memorable. Without that some will find it hard to “find” the game play beneath.

  • See, I will give the game a chance, but I can’t say that I’m happy, at all, about what they’re doing to the series. I don’t think it needed a reboot. They had a bad entry in DMC 4, which was nowhere near the level that 3 was, and suddenly, they go this direction. I think they really should’ve just continued with the established continuity. Just like how I’m definitely getting Castlevania: Lord of Shadows, but I can’t help but feel disappointed that it’s ignoring the previously established storyline.

    I will, however, be furious if they reboot Resident Evil. There’s no need for a storyline reboot. Just go back to the horror elements, but keep it within the established universe. They did it once with 4 and they can do it again. But a straight-up remake would make me rage.

  • Please Ishaan, dont give me this half-assed article.

    and you forget this:

    • MrRobbyM

      Actually. That hairstyle is quite popular amongst todays teens. Exspecially amongst the “hipsters”. You think about that.

      • thebanditking

        Why would anyone want Dante to look like a greasy haired, emo twilight loving, skateboarding, drug user? Because that exactly what he looks like here.

        **edited to calm those with thin skins**

        • MrRobbyM

          While I partially agree with some points in your comment. Thanks for one of the most ignorant comments I’ve read all month.

          • Agreed regarding the ignorance of the comment. Most teens today are total morons? Teens have always looked like morons to some people. I look back at the teens of the 70’s and 80’s and I don’t see anything better than what we wear today. Sounds like over pretentious “I”m an intelligent adult! :D” crap to me.

          • MrRobbyM

            I was going to joke about him needing his medication. But that would have just been inappropriate.

          • thebanditking

            well for one I don’t take any “meds” and personally I’m not sure why your going out of your way to make personal insults over what is meerly a generalization of a age group. Sorry to break it to you but the youth of today is not an improvement over either of the time eras referenced, and in some cases is worse. I would also be inclined to think that since you all seem fit to lash out that you in some way fall into one of those discriptions/generalizations and take offence to it because it hits too close to home.

            My intention was not to insult anyone directly. I was simply questioning their design choices, by pointing out that the designers clearly used teen steroetypes in an attempt to sell to that audience, something that I do not like or feel turned out very well. Again I did not intend to insult anyone, but oh well.

        • “sadly most teens do too”

          Then it makes perfect sense for him to look like that then, doesn’t it, since he’s clearly a teenager in this game?

        • Asura

          “Why would anyone want Dante to look like a greasy haired, emo twilight loving, skateboarding, drug user?”

          Because they wanted him to BE the typical teen? Except that because he has bogus strength despite his skinny arms (Cloud anyone?), he gets to cause a bunch of destruction otherwise unavailable and get locked up for it.

          Also, no guy who dresses like a punk likes Twilight. You’re way the hell off on your “most teens” generalizations.

          • thebanditking

            Would not surprise me if I was a bit off, I have been out of high school for a while now. Still it does little to change the fact that regardless of if you agree with my generalizations of todays teens, I am (sadly) spot on about what I said about NT’s new Dante.

    • half-assed? What the hell are you talking about?

  • After seeing that sorry excuse of a, “Metroid” game, followed by this ridiculous, “DmC” crap, as well the totally random Ryu ga Gotoku/Yakuza zombie game, I’m not sure I like this trend at all. It’s like the higher ups just stuck all their employees in a room for a few days without giving them their medication and released them later, then told them to come up with their best ideas of how to make these franchises, “better”.

    Note to employers: Don’t force your employees to go without taking their medication. If this is your new way of coming up with “great” ideas of how to, “improve” a series, you’d be better off throwing ideas at a Magic 8-Ball.

    Guess what Final Fantasy XV is going to be about, guys! The world is overrun by circus clowns and you must take control of the legendary talking sword, “Simon” in order to save the world with your pet moose, Franky.

    You heard it here first, folks.

    • Exkaiser

      Sounds pretty average for a Final Fantasy game, honestly.

    • Couldn’t be any worse than FFXIII….

    • thebanditking

      Love the FF joke, personally that sound just like fable, which in my opinion is overrated and boring (like most of Molyneux’s games).

  • MrRobbyM

    I(for one) think the series was actually getting stale. Sure they coulda done something new without the redesign of Dante(or hay, who knows. Maybe it’s a younger Dante?) But at least it’s fresh. I personally like the redesign but I know most fans might not like it due to attachment of the old design or just really hate it. Either way, just keep your minds open. I know it’s Ninja Theory, but it could be good.

    • That last sentence leads me to believe that you think Ninja Theory games are of low quality…have you played Heavenly Sword? Have you seen Enslaved?

      • MrRobbyM

        Not of low quality. I just think they’re not ones to be working on anything Devil May Cry. But maybe they did that on purpose, for the reboot. Reboot implies change afterall.

        • So outside of Capcom, who would you choose to develop a new DMC?

          • Zeonsilt

            Naughty Dogs

          • kiba99

            NO WAY !!
            its platinum games or kojima production all the way !!!!

  • Draparde

    i’m on a “wait and see” mode with DmC. i’m not gonna outright say it sucks because i saw a trailer that didint tell me much about the situation. though i still don’t like his look…i’ll get over it if its fun to play and makes sense

    • Aoshi00

      lol, so Hitler’s an avid fan of both DMC and Dragonball eh (Downfall was a great movie though)I liked Heavenly Sword and look forward to Enslaved, but not very sure about this one.. Was that Gollum doing the narration too?

      • thebanditking

        Did you play the Enslaved demo on the EU PSN? I did and to be honest it left much to be desired, the story telling was well done but the actual game play lacked depth (combat) or held your hand too much (platforming). Overall I think Enslaved will be yet another low seller.

        • Aoshi00

          Tks for the heads up. I haven’t set up a EU PSN acct yet. I’m going to give it a try once it hits the US PSN. I actually have it pre-ordered alrdy, I was just going to blind buy it because I liked Heavenly Sword, so I thought they can’t go wrong w/ this action game, also I like the Monkey King and desolate future setting. This might not sell a lot because it’s a new IP and they might not advertise a lot.. There were two games on my must buy list, Vanquish and this, the Vanquish demo was awesome, I hope Enslaved is good too.

          • thebanditking

            I’m hoping it turns out better then the demo as well (I too liked Heavenly Sword). Like I said the story telling is well done but the actual game play is just not all there (IMO). We will see.

    • Man, that scene never gets old. :D

  • Your dig at lead creative personnel is gratuitous, naive, and insulting. Have you ever worked under a good director? Or worked on a project without a leader?

    • Plenty of times.

      P.S: I don’t see any “dig.” Itagaki makes good games. Doesn’t mean the rest of his team does nothing. Hayashi’s done plenty to prove himself as well, which was the point.

    • Ishaan made a good point. The director is vital, but he’s not the only one who does anything. A team may be worthless without a director, but the director is equally worthless without a team

  • Day2Day
  • kylehyde

    The main problem with “the other” titles is that they always will have the shadow of previous games of the series haunting over them. Maybe some of them will be great games, but the paradigms that some people will have over the series maybe won’t help to apreciate the good things that they offer.I don’t have nothing against this trend, in fact I want that a nintendo man came to treasure’s offices and say “I want you for develop a star fox game” or maybe to level 5 (“I want you for a new mother title”). But if this trend is abused, then theres going to be a lot of problems, and many series could be at risk.

  • Zeonsilt
    • thebanditking

      I’m not worried about Ninja Gaiden 3 (unless they put it on Wii with motion controls, lol). Though I do feel that this DmC game will never escape from the shadow these early reaction are getting. IMO they ahve already tainted its potential (not that I seen any though).

  • Schwer_Muta

    Honestly, I hate the idea of reboots. If you’re done with a series, make a new one, don’t trot out terrible character redesigns.

  • Asura

    There are two reasons this DMC perked my attention while I could care less that 4 even existed.It’s not the same thing all over again.THE MUSIC IS SWEET.If this is another prequel, I also had a similar thought about it:”The way it could be interesting is if somehow they emphasized and presented incredibly well how this Dante “transformed” into the iconic Dante. That would be one hell of a journey. That is ignoring the gameplay element altogether to boot. Still, my shred of hope is of the character development being bloody brilliant (I know… I did call it a shred of hope…). I mean, we did have serious Dante, 3 gave us silly (and IMO, easily amused) Dante, and now we get rebellious, angsty, self-destructive Dante.”Though if it is a reboot obviously all this is thrown out the window, and how compelling the story is will be a solely stand-alone factor.

  • I didn’t like Metroid: Other M, actually. The game was quite disappointing and brought down the otherwise perfect franchise.

  • Code

    rarrr, stuff like this kind of picks away at me, on one hand I think Devil May Cry could use a new direction after DMC4. DMC3 is up there for one of my all time favorite games, action-packed, fun story that doesn’t take itself too seriously and it was fun and challenging, I loved every minute of it! But then DMC4 rolled on by me like a tumble weed, and I didn’t even bother touching it, I had zero interest, which says something after DMC3. When it comes down to DMC5 it’s a case of, “I want something new, but I also not quiet sure I want this” sure, it’s unfair to say it, but that is exactly what it is.I half expect DMC5 Dante to pan out to not really be Dante, rar, I can totally smell a plot device already, rar, it smells like Dragon Quarter. Honestly when it comes down to it, the only Dante I’ve liked is from DMC3, I’ve always found Dante in DMC/DMC2 (DMC2 especially) not really all that likable. My big issue is with DMC5 Dante’s design, it feels like they are specifically “cleansing” him for a western audience, which is all kinds of gross. Seriously where’s the color? But not dwelling on his design, if they swapped in DMC3 Dante in the trailer with Rebellion (not that scythe omo), I guess it’d be alright in my books, still more interesting then DMC4 as far as I’m concerned. Although what was clearly lacking is there wasn’t even one motorcycle wielding fight in that trailer, NOT A ONE, which is never a good sign. DMC3 had one, Bayonetta had one, God Hand didn’t have one in-game but it had a motorcycle fight in it’s heart, and that’s what really counts. If DMC5 lets loose enough to have a motorcycle fight scene, throws some color and humor into the mix, there might be hope yet! Metroid on the other hand I’m also torn on because I was so happy to see Nintendo taking a risk on plot (or at least letting Team Ninja take a risk). I love Nintendo but after years and years I’m even finding myself a little put out by Nintendo’s very safe, but also somewhat stagnant story telling. So the notion of Other M pushing story I really want to encourage and support. But then Team Ninja happened, and then Samus walked into a volcano and caught fire and I got scared and decided my best course of action would be to watch from a safe distance — rar, reading back through this, oh god what have I created! rar, I’ve totally lost my interest in maintaining a train of thought focused on concluding this post so I’ll just be going off to write another post elsewhere now~!

  • karasuKumo

    I hope 5 minutes into the game his hair grows, turns grey, drops his Emo look and gets his bad-ass attitude. They know we’ll buy it because it is Devil May Cry and will have mind blowing action (unless they’ve changed that too). It’s like making Link bald, fat and annoyingly talkative.

    • Code

      But butt what about Freshly-Picked Tingle’s Rosy Rupeeland? Isn’t Tingle sort of a fat, bald and annoyingly talkative version of Link!?

    • thebanditking

      Only a stupid company would assume that just because a certain name is on the box that we will buy it. Gamers are more educated now then ever before, and I can assure you most of the people who say they won’t support this game, likely will not, my self included.

      • Asura

        “Gamers are more educated now then ever before” and yet grow more and more stupid.

        It’s quite the funny paradox.

  • cjeromek

    It’s not that I’m saying it’s going to suck its just that when you have a well established that I enjoy immensely and change one of the reasons why I like it so much I become cautious. The same happened to Sonic the Hedgehog back in 2003. I was excited for Saturday morning to see the first episode of Sonic X but I was disappointed. Sonic just wasn’t Sonic. He’s a fifteen year old hipster and he was talking like a thirty year old stiff. And when it came to having to voice him in the games where SEGA actually had him talking the way he was suppose to, J. Anthony Griff would always sound so awkward delivering them.

    Even at such a young age the most important thing for me has always been character. I don’t have any doubts or reservations about the gameplay because I trust Capcom. They wouldn’t hand over such a much loved franchise to a company that couldn’t do it. But the problem for me is no matter fun a game may play, as long I don’t like the character I’m playing as I’ll just keep putting off until I never finish because to me, like I said, character is extremely important.

    Oh, but don’t think I won’t give it a try. I’m a Devil May Cry fan. I have to play every game in the franchise.

  • joesz

    I personally like final fantasy xiii,It was one of my favs.
    Also I liked Metroid:other M.
    But come on! DMC…It’s like you have to go through agent clank again.

  • Tokyo Guy

    I don’t quite understand how Metroid M is an “other” game. It’s basically the same as the old ones but with infuriating Wii-based motion sensing crap thrown in to prevent people from fully enjoying it. Or does the “other” part you are getting at just refer to using outside developers. Nintendo has been doing this for years. See the Donkey Konga series for example. And who made the two GBC Zelda games (Capcom) and what about F-Zero for the Gamecube?People keep commenting on Metroid M having too much story. Did any of you actually play Metroid Fusion? Seriously.Also, with respect to this game, I dare say most Japanese people don’t seem to give a crap about it. Since it’s release I have mentioned it to dozens of self proclaimed “gamers” and to be honest, most don’t even know what Metroid is, or don’t have the slightest interest in it if they do. When you consider just how many people have the Wii here, and you look at the sales numbers, is that really what one can consider a success? I think Nintendo more or less burned bridges with most Japanese fans when it put out Metroid Prime 1-3.

    • malek86

      He is just referring to the title of the game, Other M. You know, “other”.

      Which is maybe a bit misaimed, because many games had started doing this since well before it. Think, for example, RE4. But maybe Ishaan likes Metroid (or just Other M) that much.

      I just hope we won’t have to hear him throw a reference to the game in every single article of his, otherwise he’ll get worse than Inafune, lol. (j/k)

    • I mention Other M because, while it does stick closely to its Metroid roots in some aspects, in others, it tries things that the series hasn’t tried before, like building up the character of Samus. That’s mostly what I mean by the “other” reference here…more and more games are starting to do the same thing, and I’m just using the “other” title as a point of reference. :)

      • Building up? More like tearing down if you ask me.

  • thebanditking

    Ishann while I respect your opinion, I think in this instance your way off base. Personally I liked Other M too, but DmC will be a total flat on its face failure. Change for the sake of change can be a good thing but only if done with the proper guidance. Ninja Theory is a mediocre developer at best. Enslaved is a terribly generic game that even fails to top Heavenly sword, which was not considered very good to begin with. So with that said I hardly feel they are the right choice to give DMC over to. You can’t compare Nintendo’s gamble with Team Ninja to a third rate bunch like Ninja Theory.

  • Aiddon

    Other M kept the Metroid feeling and aesthetic. It made the series and Samus fun and interesting in new but reasonable ways. It respected its lineage while also shaking up the status quo by doing something both retro and new.

    This on other is CAPCOM underestimating gamers. This happened with Prince of Persia, Bionic Commando, and Final Fight; all three were sequels or reboots in name only and were basically banking on a popular series’ name and all three FAILED. There’s a lot of principle behind this matter and it’s also baffling why CAPCOM handed development to an, at best, unproven developer like NT. If it doesn’t look like DMC or Dante, then don’t take us for just buying a game because of a brand name slapped on the box.

    As for Dante, let’s face it, you DON’T change icons. Ever. That’s why no one has ever changed Mario, Mickey Mouse, or Bugs Bunny’s basic designs.

  • FireCouch

    People who play games these days are so ridiculous. They cry over everything that isn’t how they want it to be and then continue to complain for months, only to eventually buy the product they’ve had disdain for when it is released.

    It’s a video game. A piece of media. Don’t forget that.

  • Considering the fact that I pretend Other M never existed… this article confirms my nauseating thoughts about “DmC” (Changing DMC to DmC is the most fruity thing ever by the way) and why I’ll stay far away from it. I like to keep the good thoughts and memories about the games I love. No need to be there when they drag them through the mud.

  • I completely agree with this article. We should give DmC a chance. After all, we haven’t even seen any gameplay. Surely we should wait until we have more information before we rush to conclusions? Besides, I know that Capcom takes great care in ensuring their fanbase is satisfied with their games. Of course, games do need to evolve. Wouldn’t it be boring to have the same Devil May Cry game every single time?

  • cmurph666

    I liked the new DMC Trailer. I expect it will be Devil May Cry.

    Its the new design they gave Dante that urks me.

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