Halo 4 has delighted gamers for a week now and many will agree that it has upheld the series’ prestige. While Halo 4 makes it seem simple, it’s no easy feat for any franchise to make it to a Part 4. We take a look at some good and bad ones that we’ve had the fortune (or misfortune) to play.
Bad: Mario Party 4 — Nintendo (GameCube)
The debut of a new Mario Party on a brand new console generation should have be something special. MP4 wasn’t a terrible game, but it fell short on pushing the popular series forward.
Good: Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3 — Nintendo (GBA)
Super Mario Advance 4 for Game Boy Advance was nothing short of awesome. Playing this enhanced version of Super Mario Bros. 3 was worth it just to don the Tanooki suit once again.
Bad: Mortal Kombat 4 — Midway Games (Nintendo 64, PlayStation)
Mortal Kombat was all the rage in the early 90’s. I’d guesstimate that 4 out of 5 schoolyard conversations back then had to do with a Mortal Kombat secret code or fatality. No one could’ve predicted the fall from grace the franchise took with MK4. An awkward fighting engine and a barrage of uninspired new characters are to thank for this clunker’s failures.
Good: Street Fighter IV — Capcom (Xbox 360, PlayStation 3)
Where one fighter failed, part 4 of Street Fighter found revitalization. The franchise made a triumphant return with a game that fans were dreaming of.
Bad: Armored Core 4 — Sega (Xbox 360, PlayStation 3)
Robots and mechs are supposed to be complicated, but Armored Core 4 didn’t make them complicated enough. The game was also streamlined to the point where longtime fans felt abandoned and too deep into the series where newcomers couldn’t catch up.
Good: Resident Evil 4 — Capcom (PlayStation 2, GameCube, Wii, PSN, XBLA)
People are sometimes afraid of change, but that didn’t stop gamers from near universally declaring Resident Evil 4 a great game. Capcom opted for a new gameplay style (over the shoulder camera) that brought new ‘life’ to this zombie-enriched series.
Bad: SOCOM 4: U.S. Navy SEALs – Sony Computer Entertainment (PlayStation 3)
During the humble beginnings of online console gaming, PlayStation 2′s shooter of choice was SOCOM. After waiting six years since Socom 3 for a sequel, fans were eager to play this beloved game in the HD era where online gaming and graphics were solid. But SOCOM 4 simply failed to live up to such lofty expectations by catering more to casual gamers more than hardcore franchise fans. Also, the infamous Playstation Network breach didn’t help things either.
Good: Contra 4 — Konami (Nintendo DS)
This iconic franchise was put back on top with its fourth release, after straying far from its glory days on the NES and SNES. After a 15 year gap since Contra III, gamers were treated to Contra 4 and what a treat it was. Returning to the difficulty of the originals and catering to nothing but a hardcore audience, Contra 4 was the salute fans were waiting on for a very long time.
Bad: Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I and II — Sega (PSN, XBLA, WiiWare (Episode I only))
In many aspects, Sonic 4 was a step back from Sonic 3 and Knuckles. Not having Super Emeralds, Hyper Sonic or Knuckles were all indicators that this wasn’t the true sequel fans were looking for.
Good: Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare — Activision (Xbox 360, PlayStation 3)
Call of Duty 4 was both a gift and a curse. On one hand, it was an awesome, cutting edge title that broke away from the litter of World War II games. On the other hand, it spawned a slew of games that really aren’t that different from this first title. However, this COD was great for redefining the series with its engaging story and contemporary weapons.
Honorable mentions for good part 4′s
: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV: Turtles in Time (SNES), Super Castlevania IV (SNES) and Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patiots (PlayStation 3).