Weekend Open Forum: Best and worst video game sequels?

By on June 15, 2012, 7:48 PM

For better or worse, the gaming industry has made it standard practice to create sequels and spin-offs of popular titles year after year.

While it’s easy to blame it on a lack of originality, the truth is sales suggest that people like returning to familiar themes. Some best-selling franchises, like the Call of Duty series for example, are on a once-per-year model and carry publishers through the all-important holiday shopping season.

Of course big sales are not always indicative of a game’s quality or enjoyability. The trick is to pack just enough old to serve as a solid foundation and just enough new to prevent boredom and lack of interest. Some sequels in recent years that seem to have gotten the balance right include Starcraft 2, Portal 2, and Skyrim, while others like Duke Nukem Forever fell flat on their face.

In this Weekend Open Forum we want to ask: what are some of your favorite video game sequels of all time, and which franchises should be put to rest already (or given an extended vacation)?




User Comments: 69

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ikesmasher said:

Worst:

Banjo Kazooie Nuts and Bolts.

halo reach

Doom 3 didnt live up to possible potential, not worst though

Best:

Halo 2

Donkey Kong Country 2 and 3

Battlefield 3

Theres a bunch I dont feel like listing in both categories.

davislane1 davislane1 said:

Duke Nukem: Forever. 'Nuff said. (worst)

Now, for a couple of great sequels I have to list Dead Space 2 and Pokemon Silver. I thought DS2 really smoothed out some of the original's rough parts (mainly a tinge of clunkiness that exists in DS1) and added some much needed substance to Isaac Clarke. Pokemon Silver... What can I say? I thought the game improved greatly upon what Red and Yellow brought to the table.

davislane1 davislane1 said:

Worst:

Doom 3 didnt live up to possible potential, not worst though

This is an interesting one for me. I found D3 itself go be pretty lackluster, but the RoE expansion I thought exploited a lot of the potential the initial game missed. Not enough to get it on a best list, but not among the worst in my book (if you include the expansion).

Guest said:

fear 3 worst sequel and the best is not a sequel but always the 1st in the series

Guest said:

Best: Freespace 2 hands down

Worst: Duke Nukem

Lurker101 said:

I'm going to have to be the first to say Fallout 2. Fallout one had the better antagonist, but Fallout 2 had superior gameplay.

Guest said:

Worst: DRAGON AGE 2. huge letdown

Best: Mass Effect 2. Crysis 2. Skyrim (not really a sequel but owell) ALL the Half Life's, Pokemon silver and gold, AND DIABLO 2 with LOD. maybe Diablo 3

tkeys356 said:

I gotta agree with the Dragon Age 2 being one of the worst. I also thought Mortal Kombat 3 was horrible.

Best.

Legacy Of Kain-Soul Reaver

Mass Effect 2

Halo 2

Pokemon Silver/Gold

Battlefield 3

Diablo 2

Starcraft 2

Rainbow Six Vegas 2

Ma_ga said:

Let me see...

Best Sequel....Secret of Mana (Seiken Densetsu II), danm, the music, the graphics.

Also Terranigma (Soul Blazer>Illution of Gaia> .

Mass Effect 2 & 3, from Action RPG to Gears of Wars, and #3 ruin the whole saga for me.

Fable 2 & 3, with every game the saga get worst, just like ME.

Modern Warfare 2 & 3 (same as above)

Dragon Age 2, from ActionRPG, to Action.....something XD.

Deus Ex Invisible War, this one "hurt" the most, from fantastic RPGish to mediocre FPS.

Super Metroid 3 to FPS metroish-like-game, metroid prime (hasn't played 2 or 3, planing to).

The Legend of Zelda a Link to the Past to Ocarina of time (yup, I get bored with oot).

Final Fantasy 6 to Final Fantasy VII (wasn't a bad game, but wasn't half good as 6).

tkeys356 said:

"""Dragon Age 2, from ActionRPG, to Action.....something XD.""

So true

lawfer, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Worst would have to be Dragon Age 2. FEAR 3 being a close second.

Best?

Skyrim

Batman: Arkham City

Battlefield 3

Portal 2

Max Payne 3

tkeys356 said:

O on another note.....

Game of Thrones PC release was the biggest disappointment in the history of games. Especially if you watch the show.

Guest said:

best: halo 2 (mp)

worst: halo 2 (sp)

Ranger12 Ranger12 said:

For me as a kid/teenager Rollercoaster tycoon 2 was the best sequel. Looking back it is still an excellent sequel to the first.

Halo 2 was awesome but it was a totally different awesome than the first Halo which is why it made a good sequel. I. The first Halo there was this great mysterious-ness about everything and a sort of awe. Halo 2 was great in that it really fleshed out the Halo Universe in a believable and interesting way. It answered a lot of questions opened by the first without giving everything away.

Best modern sequel I would say is Assassins Creed 2

Best "old" sequel would be Age of Empires 2

aspleme said:

Let me see...

Deus Ex Invisible War, this one "hurt" the most, from fantastic RPGish to mediocre FPS.

Have to agree with you there... given that Deus Ex basically reinvented the modern RPG, Invisible war is possibly the most epic fail in a sequel.

hahahanoobs hahahanoobs said:

Best: Battlefield 3

Worst: Far Cry 2, Crysis 2

Jawshh Jawshh said:

Best:

Dead Space 2, Mass Effect 2&3, Witcher 2 Assassins of Kings, Batman Arkham City.

Worst:

Duke Nukem Forever

TS-56336 TS-56336 said:

The only dizzying sequel that I played was Duke Nukem Forever.

Guest said:

I disagree that the first is always the best. The Hitman Series got WAY better with time and the last one was the blast compared to some of the earlier in the series.

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

First of all, an excellent topic. As for my vote, I thought Bioshock 2 was significantly better than the original Bioshock, so that would get my "best sequel" vote.

For worst sequel, there are a brazillion of those. I don't begrudge companies for trying to follow up with a hit (and score more big bucks) with a sequel, but more often than not, it's a total dog. Guess I'd have to settle for something current like Dragon Age 2 where there were millions of dollars invested and hundreds of programmers/staff involved. If you can't follow up with a decent sequel with that kind of backing, then you deserve "worst of" voting.

Guest said:

Best sequel ever... Resident Evil 5!

The addition of co-op (amongst other things) to RE5 makes it the best game I've ever played. The graphics were simply stunning at the time when it was released. Also, it could run extremely well on even value segment computers. I could go on for hours about how good RE5 is, and how much fun me and my friends had while playing it... but I won't. ;)

Worst sequel... Diablo 3.

Don't gimme the stinkeye... D3 is a nothing but a moneymaker for Blizzard. Always online is crap. Real money auction house will ruin any game, including this one.

Guest said:

Best :

GTA series

Half Life Series

Worst

Duke nukem forever

Guest said:

Best - Mass Effect 2

Worst - Deus Ex Invisible War

Qrox Qrox said:

Best: BF3, Portal 2, Batman: Arkham City

Worst: Crysis 2, Fable 3

Guest said:

Best - Thief 2, System Shock 2

To a lesser extent the Max Payne and Hitman series got better which each sequel, until the Max Payne 3 and Hitman Absolution that is.

Worst has to be Deus Ex Invisible War as other posters have mentioned, I think if you were to conduct poll it was definitely be first on the list of worst sequels ever.

In more recent years most game sequels seem to be fairly disappointing. Not bad games in their own right, just failing to live up the predecessor(s). I'd include Doom 3, Half-Life 2, BioShock (I'm counting it as spiritual successor to SS2) , Deus Ex Human Revolution, and Thief 3 in that list off the top of my head.

Guest said:

I'm given to believe that most of the gamers here prefer MMORPG and FPS games. For me, the worst "sequel" ever (which is really a spin-off) was the Lost and Damned from GTAIV DLC.

The best (which had a crowded field) was the OTHER one -- TBOGT.

As for the entire series, which has taken a life of its own (people don't think of them as "sequels," as much as chapters in a long-running story or universe, like comic books or serials from the 30s and 40s) I loved IV -- with Nico Bellic. But it wasn't the BEST -- which is, by most people's standards, San Andreas. I still have a huge soft-spot for Vice City, although I have never gotten to play its "...stories" variant, which took place two years earlier in the saga and was called "VC Stories."

The worst of THOSE kinds of games was definitely "Liberty City Stories." It was a waste of thirty bucks that I paid to buy it for PS2 -- because I didn't own a PSP and didn't want one.

I also love Hitman 2: Silent Assassin and Hitman: Blood Money. I've never played Codename 47, but I DID once own a hard disc of Contracts -- and that game still remains my absolute utter favorite of the entire Hitman series to this point. We'll see if I ever get to play the Absolution game, which looks interesting, but there was something neat about the quirkiness of the older technology. The Glacier 2 engine looks like a remarkable feat, but it remains to be seen whether it is TOO slick, or whether it imparts even more realism and therefore better gaming.

daweimon said:

Worst: Final Fantasy X-2

After the true epic of a game that X was, X-2 was mindless, didn't tell any more story and had crap gameplay.

Best: Portal 2

Guest said:

Best:

Mass Effect 2

Worst:

Mass Effect 3

Mass Effect 2 was a fantastic upgrade on ME1. ME3 was still a fantastic game, but no matter what choices you make, you still get the same ending. The control of your ending is out of your hands (Unlike ME2 and ME1)

Note to person who says Halo Reach was the worst sequel, it's actually a PREQUEL. It was stet before Halo 1. Therefore should not be judged as a sequel.

H3llion H3llion, TechSpot Paladin, said:

::Best::

Mass Effect 2

WoW TBC, WOTLK

CS:GO

BF3

::Worst::

Everything after COD4

treetops treetops said:

wow I had no idea so many people bought DNF, I really liked it, the multiplayer is fun on a bun

im really hating d3, all I do now is browse the ah and forums

best sequels

war2 war3

d2

mario 2 3, snes mario super mario bros

super punch out

zelda a link to the past

tekken 3

twisted metal 2

street fighter 2

turok 2-3 (not sure which)

fallout 3

fallout 2

worst for me I know a ton of ppl love them

modern warefares\cods mad in the last 4 years

halos

sc2

d3

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I think COD4 was probably my favorite sequel.

And I like every GTA game more than the previous, starting with III until present. And I'm really psyched about the next one.

Same can be said for the Elder Scrolls series, which I also joined on III. Have yet to try Skyrim, but I'm hoping to check it out in the summer.

I recall being pretty disappointed by Panzer General III, having played 2 to death.

ikesmasher said:

I thought skyrim was a pretty bad sequel..Gameplay was "better" but the questlines were mediocre and many were WAY to short compared to oblivion.

Benny26 Benny26, TechSpot Paladin, said:

My list for best would include: Saints Row 2, Metal Gear Solid 3, Final Fantasy VIII, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and Red Dead Redemption.

My list for worst would include: Saints Row 3, Red Faction 2, Max Payne 2, Driver 3 and The Getaway: Black Monday.

Guest said:

Best -- Assasins creed 2 Hands Down

worst -- Duke Nukem Forever.

KG363 KG363 said:

Best: MGS2

Worst: MW2

Cota Cota said:

Worst:

BF3 (Feels like CoD)

ME

Crysis 2

Starcraft 2

Duke Nuken ffffffuuuuuu

Supreme Commander 2

Age of Empires 3

Stronghold 3

Empire Hearth 2

F.E.A.R. 3 (worst port ever)

The Sims 2

Almost any FPS sequel (Yes my life is full of deceptions :P)

Best:

BFBC2

Skyrim

Portal 2

Xclusiveitalian Xclusiveitalian said:

Best: BF2 (hands down just an amazing game)

Worst: Diablo 3 (Huge disappointment)

and Duke Nukem Forever Blah!

Other good: Skyrim, or Morrowind.

Uncharted series had some pretty good sequels that also stayed true to the game, and were exciting.

Other bad: Dragon age 2, Max payne 3, ghost recon future solider

I don't own a 360 so can't add them to the list but I own a PC and a ps3, im a pc gamer at heart.

Alpha Gamer Alpha Gamer said:

Best

Batman Arkham City

Diablo II

Tekken 3

Street Fighter II

Resident Evil 5

Crysis 2

Assassin's Creed II

Splinter Cell Conviction

Battlefield 3

Worst

Tekken 4

Street Fighter III

Dragon Age II

Tygerstrike said:

Worst: FF X-2

Best: L4D2

Hands down one of the best when it comes to scary. Also great DLC

veLa veLa said:

Best: Half-Life 2, Mass Effect 2, Counter-Strike: Source, Portal 2

Worst: Halo 3, Crysis 2, Mass Effect 3, Modern Warfare 3

Guest said:

Worst sequels: Crysis 2, Dragon Age 2, Deus Ex: Invisible War, Far Cry 2 (though, the first one was also terrible), Mess Effect 3

Fifty-Fifty (had some good points and some bad points compared to the first): StarCraft 2, The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings /EE/, Mass Effect 2, Skyrim

Good (they were a huge step towards the good way, but still not the best): Kane & Lynch: Dog Days, Call of Duty 2

Best: Neighbors from Hell 2, Half-Life 2, Stalker - Call of Pripyat

Won't explain them, it would be just TL;DR

Guest said:

Best sequels:

Black and White II

Civilization 2 & 4

GTA Series

Mafia 2

Just Cause 2

Max Payne 2

Mount & Blade Warband

Portal 2

Railroad Tycoon II

Stalker CS & CoP

Spellforce II

Wonderboy in monster land

Street Fighter II

Trine 2

The Witcher 2

Call of Duty World at War

Fallout New vegas

Worst Sequals:

Max Payne 3

Mount & Blade Fire & Sword

Call of Duty 2

Call of Duty Modern Warfare II

Call of Duty Black Ops

Civilization 5

Crysis 2

F.E.A.R 3

Hitman Bloodmoney

il 2 sturmovik cliffs of dover

Never Winter Nights 2

Dragon Age 2

Cities XL series - worst ever tech support I ahve come across and bug ridden game

MOTO GP 2

Saints Row 2

Soldier of Fortune 3

These are the ones that come to mind.

cmbjive said:

Worst: Devil May Cry 2, Mass Effect 3 (and not because of the ending), Fallout New Vegas (which should have been an expansion to Fallout 3), HALO ODIOUS I mean ODST

Best: Final Fantasy VI, Zelda: Twilight Princess, Skyrim, Modern Warfare (which is and isn't a sequel, but who's counting).

aspleme said:

This is a bit of an old one, but what about System Shock 2? I think that might be one of the best games of all time. A challenging game with a complex plot, surprise twists, all the RPG elements we come to expect from AAA games today, and put together so well that it can still creep you out playing in the dark late at night, even 13 years later.

System Shock 2 deserves best sequel... and certainly more attention than it's gotten so far.

Ashdude Ashdude said:

Best: Final Fantasy IV

Worse: Sonic 3D Blast (and Sonic still hasn't fully recovered!)

hitech0101 said:

Best :Assassin's Creed 2

Batman Arkham City

Worst : Dragon Age 2

The NFS series began well but now its just trash after trash.

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

O on another note.....

Game of Thrones PC release was the biggest disappointment in the history of games. Especially if you watch the show.

I've been meaning to give this a shot:

[link]

If a game can probably capture the depth of well, anything, its going to be a mod of a paradox game.

Guest said:

worst:

Mass Effect 2 and 3, Dragon Age 2, Splinter Cell Conviction, Crysis 2,

killeriii said:

(and Sonic still hasn't fully recovered!)

lol

it's been almost 20 years and they still can't bring back the original feel of the game. I figured 4 might do it, but it was a disappointment. Kinda sad on Sega's part.

Guest said:

Best:

-Red Alert (1)

-Dungeon Keeper 2

Worst

-Modern Warfare 3 (PC)

-FFX-2 and FFXIII-2

Im just listing the games I actually played. But seriously, Square should ditch Enix and go back to the days they made good games -_-

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