You can't blame the publishers for trying to branch out - and cash in - on popular franchises (even if most video game spin-offs become the object of so much mockery and jeering), as fans inevitably tire of seeing the same old series regurgitated year in year out, and crave for something a little different. In trying to provide a new angle on a popular series', or to reimagine it in some way, video game spin-offs have often been so bizarre and out of keeping with their source material that they've been completely forgotten about since release, as the publishers start to think "Let's just pretend that never happened, shall we?". In other cases, they came out before their main entries really took off, and were appreciated in their time before being brushed under the carpet by more prestigious successors. So, as the big hitters continue to march forward and rake in fans and funds by the millions, let's remind ourselves of the obscure, weird, and sometimes wonderful games that may have famous names attached, but have since been consigned to the footnotes of gaming history.
10. Elder Scrolls Adventures: Redguard
Most of us think of Morrowind as being the Elder Scrolls series' foray into the 3D realm, paving the way for the all-conquering Oblivion and later Skyrim. But around four years before Morrowind, there was this forgotten little-- not exactly gem, but half-decent adventure game set in the Elder Scrolls universe. In it, you control a young Redguard called Cyrus, who gets embroiled in the politics and upheavals of the Hammerfell region while searching for his sister. It's much more linear than the Elder Scrolls we know and love, with a heavy focus on dialogue options, puzzle-solving, and a pretty robust sword-fighting system. It wasn't a bad game for its time, but completely overshadowed by the incredible Morrowind and subsequent entries in the series. The title reveals that Bethesda envisioned this game as the first of many 'Adventures', with each one focusing on a different race of Tamriel. Kind of a neat idea, but when Morrowind came out a few years later and blew us all away, they scrapped the idea, deciding to dedicate themselves to open-world RPGs instead. Thank the Gods...
Gamer, Researcher of strange things.
I'm a writer-editor hybrid whose writings on video games, technology and movies can be found across the internet. I've even ventured into the realm of current affairs on occasion but, unable to face reality, have retreated into expatiating on things on screens instead.