Over the years, gaming's attempt to be the "next big thing" has seen as many face-meets-pavement stumbles as it has roaring successes. For every Wii Sports there's a Battlefront 2 microtransaction farce; for every Pokémon GO a Cyberpunk 2077 crossing over into mainstream audiences only to fall apart at the seams.
Because at this stage - with the amount of statistics and sheer DATA available to top-tier publishers - their constant strive to create "the most profitable product possible" feels laser focused. You can spot the loot boxes and digital storefronts a mile off, the titles sliced apart to incentivise monetisation across an entire year, rather than just one release window.
In so many cases, what starts as one awesome idea brought to life by a team of creatives... gets strung out into needless sequels, spin-offs and revivals, just to keep the money flowing in.
The issue is dedicated fanbases who've been there since the beginning - those who know deep-down what does and doesn't belong.
When mass market execution meets diehard fan backlash, the results are always worth dissecting for all involved.