5 Franchises That Got Beaten Like a Dead Horse in 2011

It was a year of sequels. Mostly, they were good sequels, and nice additions to their respective franchises, no matter the genre. But a few were one tired rehash too many, and in an industry that lives and dies by dishing out the same game every year, it’s getting a little tedious dishing out $60 for the same game on a 12-month cycle.

So while 2011 saw a rash of huge sequels, we want a few less in 2012. Maybe a few more fresh intellectual properties stretching their legs, or at the very least, some variety in our yearly refreshers. What follows is a list of five franchises that have gotten absolutely beaten to death — like zombies, they’ve been beaten to death, come back, and been beaten again like a horrific march of gross dead horses. So before this metaphor gets strained any further, lets get on with it — 5 Franchises That Got Beaten Like Occupy Protesters in Oakland this year:

5. The Elder Scrolls

This one isn’t a sin of the developer (although we could talk about all the things Bethesda did wrong with Skyrim if you want), it’s a sin of the gaming community at large. Sure, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is a huge, stunningly deep, largely incredible game. It’s a game we’ve all had a great time exploring and adventuring within, a game of which we’ve all loved to share our experiences. Hell, Game Front even has its own Skyrim Show in which our video team just dicks around with console commands, torturing ex lovers and trying valiantly to make sabre cats fight wolves (they don’t seem to realize that sabre cats and wolves just run from each other).

But the franchise has been beaten far, far beyond death by the Internet. Many a meme has sprung from the game — notably, talking about formerly doing something before an arrow piercing a particular leg joint put you out of commission, and knocking stuff down with one particularly fun-to-say Dragon Shout. I won’t deny that I’ve slipped down a YouTube rabbit hole or two clicking links to these videos, but it has to stop. It has to stop now.

…Okay, okay. Last one. Then this gets an arrow to the neck.

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13 Comments on 5 Franchises That Got Beaten Like a Dead Horse in 2011

Mike Roch

On December 15, 2011 at 10:33 pm

you! Assassans creed is the best series since pacman!(also epic game) Ubisoft knows exactly where theyre going with the story! Vengence is the answer! And while i have not yet played revelations, i di know this: no matter how many times you add onto q story as complex as this, you have to k ow where youre going with it or the story stops making sence, and i fully understand it! So you! No one gives a about your personal opinion, because youre a dumb ass who doesnt know what the hes tslking about!

Phil Hornshaw

On December 15, 2011 at 10:37 pm

@Mike

Um, in this conversation, it sounds like of the two of us, I’m the ONLY one who knows what he’s talking about, since I did play Revelations (as well as every other Assassin’s Creed game) and you didn’t. So by definition, you don’t know what Revelations is like or whether anything I say is valid or not.

Feel free to come back and berate me once you’ve actually played the game we’re discussing.

John

On December 16, 2011 at 2:18 am

Mr. Hornshaw, your articles make me laugh out loud.

Thank you and Sincerly,
John

MAdMaN

On December 16, 2011 at 6:12 am

@Mike

You might make a more coherent argument if you left out the swearing, ad hominem attacks, learned to spell and stopped ending every sentence with an exclamation mark.

gegner

On December 16, 2011 at 7:15 am

@Mike

I can’t find the link now but it was just a few days ago that Ubisoft openly admitted that they are going NOWHERE with the story. They have NO end planned out.

G.A.R.B.A.G.E

On December 16, 2011 at 8:12 am

4. Should have also been EA and Battlefield 3 as well, for beating out 16 namesake tiles/expansions in the last 9 years. And besides its become practically a COD shooter now anyways.

maxrob

On December 16, 2011 at 8:30 am

@Mark LOL assasin creed the best since pacman ? i think u forgot a billion games that are better then both pac man and assasin creed, Owned noob

Volodemort

On December 16, 2011 at 9:15 am

Man, truly, your post sucks ass. It is true that COD is just the same game, but why the hell include Skyrim? It is basically a new game altogether, and is much better than Oblivion.

Phil Hornshaw

On December 16, 2011 at 9:25 am

@John,

Aww, thanks, dude. Much appreciated.

@Volodemort

Did you, uh, even read the part about Skyrim? It’s not about the game at all. It’s about the Internet memes — about fans overusing them to the point of making them annoying. Remember “The cake is a lie?” Now we have that with “Arrow to the knee,” taking a funny thing and rendering it totally annoying.

You know you can read a thing before you comment on it, right?

Phil Hornshaw

On December 16, 2011 at 9:26 am

@Volodemort

Oh, and in regards to Skyrim being a “new game altogether,” in the words of the immortal Mitch Hedberg, “Uh…no it ain’t.”

Darrin

On December 16, 2011 at 2:43 pm

Great article. I also find the angry responses even the more hilarious due to their obvious lack of reading skills (maybe they didn’t even read it at all). I think my biggest issue with the AC games is the fact they admitted they don’t have an ending. It’s one thing to start a story not knowing exactly how it ends, but once you get half way through, you should have some idea. I don’t even know if you can call something a story that has no intended ending.

Hell, The Never Ending Story, even had an ending.

Fern

On December 16, 2011 at 3:36 pm

Liked the article. Your comparison with AC and Lost was right on. (still a fan of AC though.)
@Mike Roch
You do know that Pacman hasn’t changed its game play either. this guy probably noobe tubes

Red Menace

On December 18, 2011 at 12:12 am

“I’m often asked if we’re doing a third game after ACII… I mean, we could do 35 of these,” he told Xbox World 360.

And they’re trying.