We reviewed a handful of video games that left their protagonists in difficult situations that were not resolved because a continuation never came.
Can you imagine that Tolkien would only have published the first two volumes of The Lord of the Rings, leaving Frodo in eternal torture in possession of the unique ring? What Avengers: Infinity War would not have continued leaving half the inhabitants of the universe missing? What Uncharted 2 would have ended the way it started, with Nathan Drake clinging to life on a train hanging from a cliff, and we wouldn’t have had a chance to save him? What an anguish, right? That which is inconceivable to us has more examples than desired in the world of video games. We are going to remember a handful of digital heroes who still today seek to get out of the quagmire in which they were left. All of them have been waiting, for years and impatiently, for the starting gun that will allow them to turn into an eternal To be continued.
Note: the article necessarily contains spoilers about the plot of the mentioned games. Read at your own discretion.
After the unexpected success of the incredible Xenoblade Chronicles (there were doubts if it would come out of Japan and, once it was released in Europe, it did not arrive in the United States until the following year), Monolith got the batteries to have a new delivery for the next machine of Nintendo. The ending of Chronicles was strange and open, so it was surprising that X made a clean slate with its plot, plot and characters. X maintained mechanics, a certain general familiarity and the colossal of the mapping (now an entire planet), and innovated with the inclusion of multi-terrain mecha in a futuristic environment. Unfortunately, the story lacked the powerful dramatic engine of Chronicles, something that affected the perception of colder and more impersonal protagonists.
WiiU, as we know, failed miserably in sales and fell far short of the huge success of Wii. The open ending of X made clear a continuation after a post-credit epilogue that placed before the player huge questions to be answered in a sequel. When it appeared in Switch Xenoblade Chronicles 2, which was not a continuation of the Wii original, we learned that Monolith was a master at creating huge games but nefarious at the conclusion of her stories. It is clear that the developer has a restless ass and hates to repeat herself, but that is at the same time incompatible with leaving everyone wanting a continuation for each of her games.
Xenoblade X is one of the few WiiU games that have not made the leap to Switch. Who knows, maybe with the two Chronicles in the hybrid they will be encouraged to make a port and, if it is successful, that will open the doors to an X2. The enormous questions they put on the table have been demanding an answer for five years now.
Alan Wake’s ending was pretty crazy too, but it fit the tone of the whole game. Still it left a trace of dissatisfaction, with Alice and Alan lost in psychological gibberish. It is a thorn in the hearts of many players who love the game, but also in Remedy herself, who had planned a second half that never took place. Nigthmare did not continue the story, but it served to refine and enrich the mechanics for the future. Microsoft preferred a new IP and that gave us Quantum Break. Great Control builds bridges with Alan Wake, proving that Remedy doesn’t forget. Hopefully at some point they will manage to free the writer from the unjust limbo to which he has been banished.
Prince of Persia (2008)
The Prince of Persia Cell Shading is a beloved and remembered game despite differing in mechanics and style from the rest of the titles in the franchise, hence its early return to the present in the form of a remaster. Its ending left us saddened with the credits sliding down the screen while we carried the inert body of our partner. But it is that what came next changed our feelings for that of stupor. We were undoing what we had achieved throughout the game to bring her back to life, and the darkness, free again, swallowed us up like a black sandstorm. Seriously?
The Order 1886
Nothing could go wrong, we all thought of The Order after seeing their preview trailers. Ready at Dawn and SCE Santa Monica Studio presented us with a blockbuster with an impressive graphic appearance and a compelling storyline to draw from for many years in a consolidated franchise. An ancestral fight between good and evil where the protagonists are part of the order of the knights of the round table in a Victorian steampunk London. To that add werewolves and the character of Nicola Tesla to the Q of the James Bond movies. Nothing could fail, but it failed.
The cinema ate the video game in many moments of The Order. What was incredibly colorful in the trailers was a drag when it came to playing. In 2015 the competition in shooting games was already insane, and the PS4 exclusive was not up to scratch. Even so, it is a title that has its public and is the object of a certain cult. Its plot was interesting, the game benefited from a handful of moments to remember (the first meeting with an old man, the boarding of the airship…) and its graphic finish still looks incredible five years later. The end of the adventure left the group of protagonists divided after various deceptions and betrayals, and Galahad renouncing his name in the Order watching from the rooftops a London under martial law. After the failure of the game we fear that his last sentence, We will see you shortly, will never be fulfilled.
The lean protagonists of Bulletstorm were left speechless after an ending that was presented as the beginning of something great. It was very surprising that this title went more unnoticed than the account. His action was fresh and very dynamic. No wonder his taco-laden, hooligan humor caught the attention of the Duke, who joined the party delightedly as a playable character. The game has enjoyed a second chance with a well deserved remaster. It was a matter of justice. Another thing is that one day history will be shelved. We fear that something like this will never come, and yes, we can only think of tacos to describe what we feel.
XIII, which is also available today as a remaster, honored the comic format it adopted (it is the playable version of a well-known Belgian comic) with a tremendously unfair ending for the player. A full-blown will continue in which the biggest questions were still hidden and with a last vignette in which we were at the mercy of the bad guys. The next number never made it to the newsstands.
So is this just the beginning? These last words at the end of Mirror’s Edge made clear the intention to continue Faith’s story at some point. An anticlimactic outcome left us at the top of a skyscraper after having saved our sister and having finished with a mere puppet of the great powers in the shadows. Mirror Edge was in 2008 a breath of fresh air from within a distributor as predictable as EA. A surprise that, unfortunately, users did not know how to rate it as it deserved. Its lukewarm reception in the market parked this attractive universe for years. It was difficult to understand, and with good reason, that Mirror’s Edge Catalyst, the game that finally went on sale in 2016, was a prequel and not the continuation of what has already been seen. Much less stimulating than the original, we fear that Catalyst condemns Faith to wait for eternity atop that roof.
Haven, Call of The King
Here we have one of the most cruel, thankless and frustrating examples because of the hopes that were placed on it. According to the advertising phrase, this was the game that contained them all. In the ambitious Haven (not to be confused with the game of the same name released recently) there were platforms, QTE, first person shooter, driving vehicles by land, sea and air, underwater phases, space combat, even the possibility of traveling through the universe and uncut the atmosphere of a planet to land on it. It was 2002, and Traveler’s Tales believed in their product so much that they allowed an ending in which the hero was a prisoner on a lost planet while the villain of the show laughed at him. There will be time for a rematch in a second half, think John Burton, its creator. When not a month later, in the middle of the Christmas season, we found the game on the PS2 shelves at almost half the price, it was clear that something was seriously wrong.
The game was a tremendous commercial failure (in the marking in Spanish we do not believe that its strange location by foreign actors helped, you have proof of this in the attached video). The versions that were planned for Xbox and Gamecube were canceled and the intention to create a trilogy was defeated. Traveler’s Tales forgot the bad drink as soon as he found the goose that laid the golden eggs. A hen made up of Lego pieces. In 2004, a game that also contained them all, GTA San Andreas, triumphed, this time, and today, in the newsroom, we remember Haven every time we fly between planets in No Man’s Sky. Meanwhile, there is a remote place in space where evil triumphed and where a hero continues to cry out to be released.
Sly 4: Thieves in Time
Sly Cooper’s latest adventure is not lagging behind. As in Haven, the last combat is based on QTE (much better carried out here than the absolutely random chaining of keystrokes in the Traveler’s Tales game), and in the same way the protagonist was trapped. The adventure ended with the team of heroes lost and our beloved thief lost in time. A secret ending revealed that Sly had ended up in Pharaonic Egypt. Let’s hope he’s got used to the heat, because the poor thing has been there for seven long years.
And here we come. As you can see, we do not always find a happy ending. There have been cases of risk, such as games that came out in two parts (and stealthily) to optimize resources and development that managed to get ahead, there we have Golden Sun and Syberia; or the games by episodes, that if they are not successful they can remain unfinished. Telltale knows a lot about that, but so do the creators of Kentucky Route Zero, who took years to get the last chapter out.
Going back to the first paragraph, the Lord of the Rings trilogy was shot at the same time. A project of that size would be much cheaper if it was done like this (remember, we are not talking about Hollywood, but about a medium-sized production company that had to seek financing outside because something so ambitious was getting out of hand on budget). Now it seems difficult to imagine, but its creators thought that if the first film was not successful, perhaps they could amortize the investment by taking the other two directly into the domestic market. It is clear that having a plan B helps, and in some of the cases reviewed it did not exist due to excessive confidence. It does not matter that the product that starts to work is very good, most of the time the end of the road is inscrutable.
Half Life 2? Call of Duty Ghost? Surely you have come up with a lot of examples by reading this report. That frustrating endings have come to mind that left you unsatisfied and wanting a conclusion that never came. We encourage you to share them with us in the comments, which have finally been activated again in FreeGameTips. In this case and after a long wait, here we do end up eating partridges.