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Top Skater from Sega; the game that inspired Crazy Taxi AND Tony Hawk Pro Skater...and other fun influenced franchises in gaming

VGEsoterica

Member
Crazy Taxi and THPS are two pretty damn iconic franchises that would be hard for someone to say "yeah never heard of those", especially if you were gaming in the late 90s/2000s. Both franchises were amazing and Tony Hawk Pro Skater would go on to basically hit ICONIC status....until the franchise was basically killed with terrible games

and that's because the THPS devs credit playing Top Skater over and over during the development of the OG THPS! Sega's giant 90s "stand on a skateboard and play" cabinet directly led to the inspiration of what THPS would become.

and if that isn't enough of a damn cool lineage...the lead developer of Top Skater would go on to create Crazy Taxi and directly site his time on Top Skater as the direct influence to that game. Plus you can 100% see and hear the massive similarities between the two.

One arcade exclusive Sega game led to two massive franchises...and that is always a fun story.

But that got me thinking...what other games went on to inspire giant franchises even if they don't share the same franchise in general

 

Bragr

Member
Most major franchises have inspired other games, obviously Mario/platformers, Zelda/action-adventure, Doom/shooters, or Ultima/RPGs.

One that deserves more attention is how Half-Life and its set-piece action formula is the basis of modern action games across multiple genres, not to mention its focus on realistic handling and weapon feel. The original Assassins Creed is also a lot more influential than we would expect, as well as the original Halo and later on Far Cry, which is the basis for several open-world shooters and emergent vehicle-based gameplay in first-person games.
 

VGEsoterica

Member
Most major franchises have inspired other games, obviously Mario/platformers, Zelda/action-adventure, Doom/shooters, or Ultima/RPGs.

One that deserves more attention is how Half-Life and its set-piece action formula is the basis of modern action games across multiple genres, not to mention its focus on realistic handling and weapon feel. The original Assassins Creed is also a lot more influential than we would expect, as well as the original Halo and later on Far Cry, which is the basis for several open-world shooters and emergent vehicle-based gameplay in first-person games.
Half Life is a great example...that game basically CHANGED gaming moving forward
 
People VASTLY underestimate the impact of a lot of Sega's older games on game design in general. Nintendo tends to get a lot of the credit and deservedly so, I mean games like SMB, Zelda, Metroid and Mario 64 practically helped define a lot of conventions in modern-day gaming.

But A lot of Sega's classics did this as well, just in more understated ways. Outrun and Virtua Racing inspired countless racing games and helped set standards in that genre. Virtua Fighter is the reason we ever got Tekken or that there was ever a template for 3D fighters. Some people like to rag on Sonic Adventure these days but at the time it was actually a big leap for 3D platformers production-wise and has some lineage that can be traced to later 3D platformers that gen like the Jak & Daxter series, Rachet & Clank series, etc. (when you start thinking of 3D platformers that were also big on story and infusing more third-person combat mechanics into their design structure).

There's quite a few other examples, but those were just some that came at the top of my mead. And in that regard they served their purpose as a platform holder very well, it just tends to be a bit underappreciated compared to Nintendo and Sony (but arguably, heck easily, more appreciated than Microsoft's in that capacity and I think that's 100% deserved if we're just focusing on first-party games software. I don't think MS's 1P, historically, has shown innovation in leading areas of game design forward the rest of the industry can take from the way Nintendo, Sega, and Sony's 1P software have, but maybe there'll be a surprise or two in that regard this generation).
 

VGEsoterica

Member
People VASTLY underestimate the impact of a lot of Sega's older games on game design in general. Nintendo tends to get a lot of the credit and deservedly so, I mean games like SMB, Zelda, Metroid and Mario 64 practically helped define a lot of conventions in modern-day gaming.

But A lot of Sega's classics did this as well, just in more understated ways. Outrun and Virtua Racing inspired countless racing games and helped set standards in that genre. Virtua Fighter is the reason we ever got Tekken or that there was ever a template for 3D fighters. Some people like to rag on Sonic Adventure these days but at the time it was actually a big leap for 3D platformers production-wise and has some lineage that can be traced to later 3D platformers that gen like the Jak & Daxter series, Rachet & Clank series, etc. (when you start thinking of 3D platformers that were also big on story and infusing more third-person combat mechanics into their design structure).

There's quite a few other examples, but those were just some that came at the top of my mead. And in that regard they served their purpose as a platform holder very well, it just tends to be a bit underappreciated compared to Nintendo and Sony (but arguably, heck easily, more appreciated than Microsoft's in that capacity and I think that's 100% deserved if we're just focusing on first-party games software. I don't think MS's 1P, historically, has shown innovation in leading areas of game design forward the rest of the industry can take from the way Nintendo, Sega, and Sony's 1P software have, but maybe there'll be a surprise or two in that regard this generation).
I’ll never understand the modern hate for Sonic Adventure. Those games were straight 10/10 fun when they released. The reviews were great and the sold like crazy.

Every time I sit down to play SA I always have fun and have a smile on my face
 
I’ll never understand the modern hate for Sonic Adventure. Those games were straight 10/10 fun when they released. The reviews were great and the sold like crazy.

Every time I sit down to play SA I always have fun and have a smile on my face

Hipster gamers who are just not very skilled at them (or Sonic in general) combined with Nintendo kids who carried the playground with them into their 40s, basically got into journalist positions/high positions on gaming news & video platforms and tried writing revisionist history around the back half of the 2000s' when it came to Sonic and even Sega stuff in general.

Thankfully a lot of the BS narratives started getting chipped away at around the middle last decade, due to more actual gamers starting up their own content channels and gamers venturing out to play older Sega and Sonic games themselves (thanks to growing popularity of emulation). Consoles like the Saturn got shat on hard at the end of the 2000s with hostile articles written by "industry people" that gained lots of traction. Nowadays some people even prefer Saturn to the PS1 and N64 (personally it's still 2nd to PS1 but not by very much, and both of them have more to offer gaming-wise than N64 IMHO).

Like you said the original Sonic Adventure games were well-received by fans and reviewers at the time, there was a lot of hype around them too. I even picked up the SA Prima Strategy Guide as a coping mechanism when I wasn't able to get a Dreamcast 🤣(and then shortly after that got a PS2...yeah I was part of the "problem" but I was a kid then). A lot of people seem to want Sonic Team to go back to that style in a way actually intended; Sonic '06 might've been conceived as SA3 but they ran into a lot of issues they could probably remedy if they made it today.
 

SkylineRKR

Member
Our Arcade had this cab way back in the 90's. The rails on the sides would keep you safe.

Its one of the reasons I bought Shred for like 10 bucks, but that was a complete piece of shit.
 

Spukc

Member
Crazy Taxi and THPS are two pretty damn iconic franchises that would be hard for someone to say "yeah never heard of those", especially if you were gaming in the late 90s/2000s. Both franchises were amazing and Tony Hawk Pro Skater would go on to basically hit ICONIC status....until the franchise was basically killed with terrible games

and that's because the THPS devs credit playing Top Skater over and over during the development of the OG THPS! Sega's giant 90s "stand on a skateboard and play" cabinet directly led to the inspiration of what THPS would become.

and if that isn't enough of a damn cool lineage...the lead developer of Top Skater would go on to create Crazy Taxi and directly site his time on Top Skater as the direct influence to that game. Plus you can 100% see and hear the massive similarities between the two.

One arcade exclusive Sega game led to two massive franchises...and that is always a fun story.

But that got me thinking...what other games went on to inspire giant franchises even if they don't share the same franchise in general

thanks for making this thread :3
 

SpiceRacz

Member
I played the shit out of Top Skater. I always felt like the Street Sk8er games on PS1 were basically spiritual sequels to that game.

Also, that brings back memories of this thing:

 

PaintTinJr

Member
Shout out to Kung Fu Master for pretty much inventing the side scrolling beat em up - and for making 10p go a long, long way if you were any good at it.
I'd give it a lot of credit for being first, but Way of the exploding fist 2 - on the C64 - for being an adventure game in the same vein probably deserves equal credit IMO - unless there were others I missed that did what Fist 2 did before it.
 

Markio128

Member
I'd give it a lot of credit for being first, but Way of the exploding fist 2 - on the C64 - for being an adventure game in the same vein probably deserves equal credit IMO - unless there were others I missed that did what Fist 2 did before it.
Way of the exploding fist 2 was awesome. The pinnacle of the genre was Streets of Rage 2 for me.
 

Northeastmonk

Gold Member
I played Top Skater at the arcade several times. It was one of those machines that automatically grabbed your attention the moment you saw it. You had big machine you could hop on and do tricks. I miss how you could move the board around. We have lost the appeal when arcades started shutting down. A good time at the arcade included this game, MK4, Tekken Tag, and the Marvel VS series. Top it all off with Top Skater, Hydro Thunder, F1 racing, or some other large moving cabinet.
I played the shit out of Top Skater. I always felt like the Street Sk8er games on PS1 were basically spiritual sequels to that game.

Also, that brings back memories of this thing:

I would have loved to have seen/played that.
 

VGEsoterica

Member
I played the shit out of Top Skater. I always felt like the Street Sk8er games on PS1 were basically spiritual sequels to that game.

Also, that brings back memories of this thing:

I did a video on Prop Cycle last year and usually when I reference a cab and ask who’s seen it recently I always get a few pings on places that still have these giant cabs

Except prop cycle. Not a single person knew of one still in existence. Which is a bummer
 

VGEsoterica

Member
Hipster gamers who are just not very skilled at them (or Sonic in general) combined with Nintendo kids who carried the playground with them into their 40s, basically got into journalist positions/high positions on gaming news & video platforms and tried writing revisionist history around the back half of the 2000s' when it came to Sonic and even Sega stuff in general.

Thankfully a lot of the BS narratives started getting chipped away at around the middle last decade, due to more actual gamers starting up their own content channels and gamers venturing out to play older Sega and Sonic games themselves (thanks to growing popularity of emulation). Consoles like the Saturn got shat on hard at the end of the 2000s with hostile articles written by "industry people" that gained lots of traction. Nowadays some people even prefer Saturn to the PS1 and N64 (personally it's still 2nd to PS1 but not by very much, and both of them have more to offer gaming-wise than N64 IMHO).

Like you said the original Sonic Adventure games were well-received by fans and reviewers at the time, there was a lot of hype around them too. I even picked up the SA Prima Strategy Guide as a coping mechanism when I wasn't able to get a Dreamcast 🤣(and then shortly after that got a PS2...yeah I was part of the "problem" but I was a kid then). A lot of people seem to want Sonic Team to go back to that style in a way actually intended; Sonic '06 might've been conceived as SA3 but they ran into a lot of issues they could probably remedy if they made it today.
I was so excited for SA I imported a Dreamcast early for it as like a 15 year old kid. I then learned what “region locked” meant like 9 months later 😂
 

Northeastmonk

Gold Member
I was so excited for SA I imported a Dreamcast early for it as like a 15 year old kid. I then learned what “region locked” meant like 9 months later 😂
That’s how my first experience went except I paid a local game store here in town to mod my Dreamcast for ShenMue. Code Veronica was sold out. They installed this switch, which basically enabling the hot swap trick. Load a game, wait till it stops spinning, swap disc, and then load the game. I didn’t know what to do at first, so I had to call the store back and they had to give me instructions. This place eventually got shut down by the Feds for modding consoles and selling burned games. You’d walk into their store and you could buy a burned copy of Sega GT. It was cool as a young teenage because you didn’t know any better and you wanted to play imports. I do remember Babbages getting Japanese Dreamcasts and SA was something you could play at the store.
 
Sega has always had the some of the most innovative, imaginative, and fun arcade games- especially when we're talking 90's and early 2000's. For example. when you compare Model 3 games with other arcade games of that time period, Sega was so much more advanced in both graphics and gameplay. I've been able to play a lot of these never-ported arcade games on emulators, but haven't really had much luck with Top Skater. I'm able to get it to load, but controls are whack (understandable since the arcade used an actual board) and it stutters.
I've been hoping and wishing for the longest time that Sega would release a compilation of their arcade games that were never ported to home systems. Instead, we just continue getting these Genesis/ Mega-Drive collections ad nauseum.
 

PaintTinJr

Member
Way of the exploding fist 2 was awesome. The pinnacle of the genre was Streets of Rage 2 for me.
I suspect there is loads of big name iconic games from Sega like Streets of Rage 2 I've actually never played, probably because I was on PC by then playing games like Budokan(1989), Secret Agent Wolf, 4D Sports Driving and Prince of Persia, after selling my imported MegaDrive to a school friend after completing Super Monaco GP.

As a kid it just felt like there was an unlimited supply of games with never enough money to get them all or try them all in arcades when the fair came to town.
 

SegaManAU

Gold Member
I spent a lot of time in arcades during the 90s and early 2000's. Top Skater was bloody amazing, and so much fun! Would love for it to be released on Xbox Live and PSN.
 
I was so excited for SA I imported a Dreamcast early for it as like a 15 year old kid. I then learned what “region locked” meant like 9 months later 😂

Sounds badass 😆. I always saw ads for those import shops in the back of gaming magazines (especially GameFan) and there was always something so cool & neat about them.

Sega has always had the some of the most innovative, imaginative, and fun arcade games- especially when we're talking 90's and early 2000's. For example. when you compare Model 3 games with other arcade games of that time period, Sega was so much more advanced in both graphics and gameplay.

Yeah, it's bonkers to think VF3 came out the same year as Super Mario 64 and Crash Bandicoot, or even other fighters like Tekken 2. The difference in fidelity was a true generational leap.

I've been hoping and wishing for the longest time that Sega would release a compilation of their arcade games that were never ported to home systems. Instead, we just continue getting these Genesis/ Mega-Drive collections ad nauseum.

That's be awesome; at this point I'm hoping Sega even consider a Saturn Mini or Dreamcast Mini. I'd really like one for their System 32/Model 1/2/3/NAOMI 1 & 2/Hikaru/Chirico arcade games, too.

It's time, Sega.
 

Black_Stride

do not tempt fate do not contrain Wonder Woman's thighs do not do not
I miss arcades.

P.S Kenta is the reason my highschool years were filled with Airwalk
 

SirTerry-T

Member
A case could be made for I-Robot (1983) being responsible for any third person game that followed after?


I remember reading an interview with Toby Guard, citing it as a huge influence on the original Tomb Raider.
 
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