Blog: Should Next-gen Games Be Sequels Or New IPs?

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**Be advised this is an editorial feature that represents the views of the editor ONLY.**

If we simply take a look at the primary line-up of next gen games, we’re looking at mostly sequels: Killzone: Shadow Fall, Forza Motorsport 5, Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, Call of Duty: Ghosts, Battlefield 4, Need For Speed: Rivals, Dead Rising 3, etc. So I’ve been pondering over whether sequels or new IPs will dominate the next generation of gaming.

call of duty ghosts the division

Ever since the bulk of the gaming announcements at E3 this past summer, the games that have garnered the most attention, and that seem the most next-gen–graphically, FPS, capabilities, innovation, etc–are the ones that are new IPs, not sequels: The Division, Watch Dogs, The Order 1886, Titanfall, and many more. I would gladly choose Titanfall over Call of Duty: Ghosts, just like I would want The Order 1886 over the Thief reboot. I’m sure most of you feel the same way.

There is only so much developers can do to advance a story. Take Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag for example; it is an entirely different story than Assassin’s Creed 3 and the Ezio days in Assassin’s Creed 2, but it is STILL an Assassin’s Creed game. The story goes through the same process of advancements to the next stages. You assassinate the same way, run the same way, and even converse the same way. My point is, when I go out and buy a new Assassin’s Creed game, I know what experience I’m going to get out of it. In that particular case, a new IP like The Division is more appealing. On the other hand, continuing an ongoing story is a necessity, as long as they know when to end it.

In my mind, sequels are there to supplement our hunger for new experiences in new IPs. I love the Battlefield franchise and am having a blast playing Battlefield 4, but when Titanfall comes out I’m just going to set it aside for awhile. They can add spacesuits to Battlefield for all I care, in the end I would still rather run on walls and drive mechs (ahem, Titans) in Titanfall.

Would you rather play Uncharted 4 or another game like The Last of Us? I don’t know about you, but I choose the latter. The Last of Us is a testament to developers and skeptics around the world that core gaming still exists. It’s the same as the film industry. Films like Gravity, 12 Years A Slave, and Frozen, are getting more attention and critical-acclaim over blockbusters like Man of Steel and Star Trek Into Darkness. Gamers, just like movie-goers, want new experiences over simply new installments in decade-long franchises. Now I’m not saying sequels aren’t fun, I would just rather have more new IPs. What about you?

  • Joe

    I’d love to see some new IPs on the Wii U. Even X, the game I’m looking forward to the most, isn’t a new IP. But Nintendo are probably the guiltiest of them all in terms of sticking to tried and tested franchises. I mean, look at how much faith they had in games like Xenoblade/The Last Story/Pandora’s Tower selling outside of Japan.

    I’d expect the number of new IPs to increase throughout this generation – big-name series from the previous gen are likely to be console sellers in the early years, and devs/publishers will be more inclined to stick to the safer option until install bases are higher. That said, I don’t really mind the current balance all that much anyway (aside from you, Nintendo).

  • kevin

    New ,old , remakes , just as long that quality, game play, graphic’s, story are all their I don’t care .

  • gradius6

    Im a looooong time fan of NFS since 3DO days last good NFS was Underground, criterion fail to make nfs twice. now MArcus nelisson (GHOST GAMES) is failing too. what gives EA?? why do all future NFS titles need to be open world racing???? that sucks, who want to continully drive with no REAL indication the race is over. drive few feet pass finishline bam cops after you.

  • jb223

    I feel like this gen might be “the gen of the new ip”. If you look at the history of videogames, sequels have always been around, but they usually warranted wildly different worlds & mechanics, and new ip’s were still everywhere. I blame the original Lord of the Rings movies for our currently waning fascination w/ sequels in all mediums. Those movies brought the phrase “trilogy” into the public mindscape, and as a result, anyone who started a story after those movies released all had their eyes towards a trilogy. Now most of the franchises created as a reaction to that have had time to close out their trilogies, and are now resorting to reaching for anyway to keep those stories going and that money rolling in, through reboots, prequels & remakes. It’s only fitting that as the trend starts to die out, that one of the franchises to create that death cry is the one that began it. The Hobbit has widely been considered unwarranted of a trilogy, even by the casual cinemagoer who doesn’t typically put much thought into the movies. There will still be sequels, especially for franchises that will probably never die such as MGS & Zelda, but those sequels will most likely strive to change their formulas completely so as to resemble new ip (Just look at Ground Zeroes upcoming first foray into the open world genre for proof). Devs & Publishers are going to make whatever kind of game sells, so the best way to judge a trend is to look at the consumers, not the companies. Consumers seem to be starting to revert back to wanting to be able to experience a full story w/o the years of waiting between installments, and it might be slow going at first, but this gen should bring a lot of great new ip’s sooner rather than later.