How Do Some Games Remain Timeless?

A lot of people would claim that video games are a revolution. Not the citizen uprising kind of revolution, but in that they continue to be played years after their release, and make returns to popularity frequently. This can be seen through long-lasting franchises in gaming, popular games that have remained a part of our culture, and the eagerly awaited returns of various characters and gaming styles. Some games have remained popular, despite their target demographic now being more than twenty years older than when they first started playing. The question remains; is it simply nostalgia that keeps us playing?  

The strong opinion on how Sonic looked in the initial trailers for the live-action film illustrates that there are plenty of people who still care about the character, and will likely turn up to watch his antics after his drastic redesign. While Crash and Spyro, launched on PS1 in the 1990s, also saw successful remasters in recent years. Older fans were able to enjoy the unchanged gameplay, while those new to the games were hooked by the sparkling graphics and colorful worlds. In these instances, older generations help to act as brand ambassadors to ensure that these newer audiences engage with the classic franchises, with as much excitement and enjoyment they felt experienced decades prior.

One of the reasons these games continue to thrive is due to the nostalgia that the classic gameplay and characters bring us. Elements that remind us of the past generally tend to induce positive emotions. So, re-mastering versions of games we once loved, are more likely to be engaged with, in consumers’ search to replicate fond memories. Positive feelings in our past sustain longer than negative ones, relatively speaking. So, we often tend to look back with rose-tinted glasses.

The nostalgia factor at play here, allows us to reconnect with positive memories of our pasts. But, that doesn’t explain why these games are so popular for those who weren’t even around at the conception of the original games. Instead, some titles and their beloved characters are able to stand the test of time in the same way that fashion and cultural trends are in a constant state of revolution. Instead, the innovation, welcomed reinvention, and the power of the games themselves, the characters, the gameplay, and the concepts are the reason that things continue to remain popular and are able to make comebacks.   

Further afield, a whole host of traditional games are regaining popularity. Bingo has become popular again due to a modern way of offering it to players, such as hosting bingo parties that incorporate music, dancing, and all the elements of a good time. The classic card game Baccarat is also seeing somewhat of an online revolution, due to the accessibility of online casinos. The introduction of this digital gaming industry means that players can get involved with games that they might not otherwise have chance to play, especially with mobile functionality that allows people to play on the go.

While nostalgia definitely plays a part in keeping franchises popular, the relevance of the adaptations of the games themselves should also be factored in. Whether we’re returning to our favorite plumber, collecting gold rings as a speedy hedgehog, or playing a card game that has been passed down for centuries, the nature of the game is what keeps us coming back for more.  

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