After reading an editorial over at Joystiq which called for a new line of history to begin in video games
--suggesting at least a temporary moratorium on the endless flood of World War II
games that seem to constantly make appearances--I couldn't help but think maybe they were right. In fact, there were more than a few underappreciated concepts I'd been wanting to see more of for some time. So I pulled a list of them together, and brought them out here to take a look at three desperately underappreciated game concepts that could stand a little extra shot in the arm.1. Westerns
This is a subgenre that doesn't seem to come along very often. Remember how enthused everyone was when Rockstar dipped a toe into this particular set of waters? Remember what we got out of said dip? We got Red Dead Redemption
, that's what we got. Let's face it, Red Dead Redemption was a spectacular game, but how often do you see anything like it? Call of Juarez, maybe? Gun? How many Westerns have you seen released in the last year? This is a market that could stand a bit more life in it.2. Zombies
Another preposterously overlooked subgenre, zombies pose an amazing opportunity for gamers. Not only do they make a delightful impetus for first person shooters, they also make an incredible subject of strategy gaming as well. There is a huge amount of possibility being overlooked here, including the thought of combining the two into a Dawn of the Dead-style adventure that allows players to not only seize a shopping mall, but clear it, and protect it from outside agitators as well. Consider a combination of the massive world of the Fallout series, with all its empty buildings that can be seized and looted, with the upcoming Fortnite, that allows users to fortify and defend a fixed location. That's one incredibly immersive sandbox title right there, and only just the beginning of the possibilities. Let's go beyond the oversimplified shooting mayhem and endlessly regenerating zombie hordes of Left 4 Dead and put some real meat in a zombie title. Red Dead Redemption: Undead Nightmare did the job up right, but let's not let that be the only one.3. Steampunk
Of all of these, this may be the most overlooked. How many gamers out there already are wearing steampunk regalia and going to various conventions? Let's face it; the closest thing we've had to steampunk yet is Bioshock and Dishonored, and frankly, Dishonored is barely in the category. Damnation? Please. That wreck was more like a steam pipe explosion than a steampunk title. With only a handful of titles to look to, there's a serious opportunity to improve just slipping on by.
There you have it; three big genres that are going wildly underrepresented in the gaming market today. Opportunities to pull heads out of the sand and take on some new and exciting settings and plots are wide open, but will anyone take them on? Will the next generation of consoles have the sufficient power to make these overlooked dreams come true? Only time will tell, but anything can happen.