10 Abandoned Games Kept Alive By Their Communities
All good things must come to an end. Unfortunately, that's something that happens all too often in the gaming industry. Licenses with publishers can end, online servers can be shut down, and games can be removed from digital storefronts. As such, there are likely numerous games that you remember fondly that have received a final burial.
However, many of these games have passionate fans who will burn the midnight oil to keep them alive or even raise them from beyond the grave. You may be shocked to see some of your old favourites are still alive and well thanks to the hard work of the community.
10/10 The Battle For Middle-Earth
The Battle for Middle-Earth series had two RTS games (and an expansion) set in Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings universe. For fans of that world, these were stellar games that looked great, played well, and had plenty of fan service, including campaigns that took you through the most iconic battles from the trilogy and beyond.
The games are no longer available for sale, but the community has never been healthier. Full guides exist to still play all the games, and there are even mods that essentially create the sequels that fans never got. There are even fan servers still up and running, allowing you to play online.
The story of Evolve is one that you'll know all too well. Developers overhype and over-promise on an upcoming game. It demos really well, but when it comes time to launch, there are a host of issues that hold it back.
It's been years since it was removed from digital storefronts but since its demise, Evolve has been reanimated thanks to some passionate fans. There is some setup you must do before you can match up with other players, but if you're excited to jump back into Evolve, now is the time.
8/10 Silent Hill 2
The original Silent Hill 2 is a game that was long abandoned by Konami. While the franchise is getting its dues once more, the horror classic has still been left by the wayside. Silent Hill 2 and its pitiful remaster haven't been touched up or brought to modern platforms in favor of a full-on remake.
However, there is a group of fans who have already done the legwork to remaster the game and make it playable on current PCs. The Silent Hill: Enhanced Edition has all the tweaks you need to enjoy this one-of-a-kind game, though you'll need a copy of the game on PC to play it.
7/10 Dark Souls: Prepare To Die Edition
The original Dark Souls was an exceptional game that has withstood the test of time and led to the creation of one of the most popular titles ever created.
While FromSoftware did release Dark Souls: Remastered as a way of bringing that original game to modern systems, many fans weren't pleased with how it turned out. However, the Prepare to Die Edition still has its fans who meet online. On top of that, there are numerous mods available to spice up the experience. This includes visual overhaul mods that give you a completely new "remastered" experience.
It's difficult to say that Doom is a "dead" game. Id Software has since moved on to bigger and bettergames, but the original is so easy to tweak that it's almost an evergreen game all on its own. There are so many mods that it would make your head spin.
All you have to do is get searching, and you'll see a massive host of add-ons, new levels, new weapons, and graphic overhauls that you could play Doom until the end of time.
5/10 Sonic The Hedgehog (2006)
When you talk about the worst games of all time, one title that almost always end up in conversation is Sonic the Hedgehog from 2006. Sega seems to agree with this sentiment, as this release has been lost to the Xbox 360 and PS3, and remains trapped there.
However, fans would argue that there the game had a great foundation that could've turned into an amazing game if the potential was realized. That's where Project '06 comes in. This is a fan remake of Sonic '06 that aims to do the impossible: make it excellent. Sonic's and Shadow's campaign levels are all available to try in the current build.
4/10 The Lord Of The Rings: Conquest
License changes for The Lord of the Rings have led to many games all but disappearing, and that includes The Lord of the Rings: Conquest. This was a Middle-Earth version of the classic Star Wars: Battlefront games, featuring command posts, classes, and iconic heroes.
The game is trapped on Xbox 360 and PS3, without even a PC release to compensate. However, fans still have custom servers running that enable you to play this game online with some work on your end. In addition, there is a fan remake of the game that works to build it in Unreal Engine 5 to capture the epic scale of Peter Jackson's films.
3/10 Mass Effect 3
It's been a while since Mass Effect has dominated the conversation. The Legendary Edition brought back the first three games, but there was a notable omission: the multiplayer for Mass Effect 3. Many longtime fans have regarded it as one of the best online modes in any game of its kind.
Needless to say, it's hard to argue with an online horde mode with classes to upgrade. Despite the remaster omitting the multiplayer, it can still be played through the original game. If EA ever decides to shut down the servers, it's also easy to imagine that fans would quickly respond with making one of their own.
2/10 Phantasy Star Universe
MMOs are difficult when it comes to preservation. They are living, breathing games that change over time. If they are ever shut down, the end result is usually very different from when you first played. That said, many MMOs have gone the way of the dodo due to low player counts, poor reception, or other reasons, and Phantasy Star Universe is no exception.
This is a much older MMO from the PS2 and Xbox days. The servers were shut down in 2010. However, thanks to some fan patches and the Clementine mod, players can still boot it up and play online with others to this day.
If you watched Disney Channel in the early 2000s, you probably remember a game called ToonTown. This was an online MMO that was inspired by the classic cartoons that put the Walt Disney company on the map. ToonTown has been shut down for several years, but that hasn't stopped the fans.
ToonTown Rewritten has been a fan revival for the game complete with events, updated visuals, and more. While it could get axed by Disney at seemingly any time, fans of this cartoonish online game can dive back in and not miss a beat.
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