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Did a failed or otherwise ‘bad’ game ever have a concept you wish had been further developed?

Gamingtodaynews1e - Did a failed or otherwise 'bad' game ever have a concept you wish had been further developed?

While I'm sure this could apply to many games out there, for me at least the idea of a game with an intriguing mechanic or concept that I wish had the opportunity to be further developed, there can be no better example than Def Jam Icon.

If you're not familiar, it was the 7th generation console successor to the widely well received (and now quite expensive to collect) 6th generation Def Jam Fight for New York.

The game certainly suffered from the departures it took from the previous entry; the game was much slower (some animations feel like you're moving through molasses), the decision to go completely HUDless, and a move away from the over the top fighting action of FfNY for a more 'realistic' style borrowed from the Fight Night series of boxing titles all made the game drastically different, and critics were not kind. It certainly isn't a great game. Most people would say it's actually pretty terrible.

It does however feature something that to my knowledge hasn't quite been replicated or explored in other games since; the integration of the music into the gameplay as heavily as Icon did. It's arguably the defining feature of the game, and I think still has great potential, but was unfortunately brought down by the rest of the game around it.


If your song is playing, you become stronger, but timing your attacks to the beat of the song also amplifies the damage of each blow. It also activates hazards in the arena, and knowing when these hazards will activate is important to avoid taking a big hit, or even an instant death in a few select instances (such as being thrown through the doors of an elevator shaft as they open during a bass drop). All of these things mean you're rewarded for knowing the music of the game and how it effects the arenas you fight in, and means you need to make decisions about what you do with your time while your opponent is recovering from a throw or being knocked to the ground; If your song isn't playing, do you quickly use the turntable to win back your music advantage, or try to get in a few more hits or attack as they're getting up? If they're close enough to a hazard, it might be worth trying to use the turntable to fast forward the song to the next bass drop so they're caught in it; etc etc.

It's something I wish had gotten the chance to be further explored; Icon isn't a very good game, but the integration of the music so heavily into a fighting game like Icon did always stick with me. It's a shame the rest of the game around it had to suck.

What examples of game concepts or mechanics struck you as worthy of more polish or refinement, that perhaps never got the chance they deserved?

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