Sony’s exclusive line-up hasn’t always looked the way it does now. Now, if you look at what PlayStation 4’s exclusives generally tend to be, you see a lot of graphically ultra-realistic third person action/adventure games, which are all amazing in their own ways, but it wasn’t too long ago where the PlayStation exclusive line-up looked very different. The PlayStation 3 was littered with a very diverse array of exclusive games by the end of its life.
Adventure games, platformers, experimental games, and even several first person shooters like Killzone and Resistance really found their footing on the Playstation 3. The latter ended up turning into a very well-received trilogy all on the PS3 with two hand-held spin-offs, one on the PSP and one on the Vita. The developer, Insomniac Games, who was very well known for their work on Ratchet and Clank series from the PS2 era was in full-swing as a developer churning out Ratchet games and Resistance games all throughout the PS3’s life, both carrying the common denominator of being extremely fun and featuring some of gaming’s most interesting and entertaining weapons.
Resistance to this day might be Insomniac’s most mature series though, with lots of darker themes and tones ringing throughout the main trilogy’s alternate history timeline, creating an interesting contrast with the studios’ other work. All three of the mainline Resistance games reviewed and sold quite well and cultivated a healthy online audience, especially with Resistance 2, so what happened? Why haven’t we seen any word of a fourth game in the series in so many years? What the hell happened to Resistance?
Resistance certainly started out with a bang! The first game featured many great weapons and an very interesting plot of Allied forces fighting against an insect-like extraterrestrial species, who would be called the Chimera, from taking over Europe in the 1950’s. The marketing was a snap as the skull of said Chimera was quickly turned into an unmistakable image synonymous with the series. The game-play featured a unique mix of traditional World War 2 styled weapons and alien tech that had more in common with guns that you would see in a Halo game than any other game based in the 1950’s, and this kept things infinitely interesting throughout the campaign.
Another excellent addition that Resistance had to offer was its massive multiplayer that could house up to 40 players at once, offering sheer chaos that few other shooters offered at the time. The online mode was supported well after launch with multiple map packs and other DLC content being rolled out for a long time after launch. These basic tenants continued into the second game that had a comparable story but an even better online mode that had one of the PS3’s best co-op experiences.
Most of the weapons from the first game’s multiplayer were back as well as a few additions and servers for this mode were active well into the current decade, and made it all the way to 2014 before they were shut down. Resistance 3 was perhaps the best game in the series with more focus on narrative and story and had what was easily the best campaign in the series. The multiplayer was a little more on the generic side this time around but still rounded out the game, and the series, quite nicely. So it’s no surprise that the Resistance series did quite well and, to this day, has a pretty dedicated fanbase.
Like I touched on before, Insomniac really lived up to their name by being straight up workaholics for the last 15 years. Countless quality games have been produced out of that studio and one can’t really blame them for wanting to move on from any given franchise. The first game was a launch window game for the PS3 and really sold quite well, so a sequel or even a trilogy weren’t too out of the ordinary for something that was successful, but that doesn’t necessarily mean the studio behind it is going to want to continue with it forever. We see this all the time with developers. Once three or four great games are out in a franchise, its only natural for the developers to want to stretch their legs creatively as Guerrilla Games did with Horizon Zero Dawn and Naughty Dog did with The Last of Us.
Insomniac Games’ CEO Ted Price did tell GamesRadar in an interview a few years back “We decided to bring Resistance to a conclusion when we looked ahead and realized that Resistance 4, while possible and something we seriously considered, wasn’t going to be the right game for us at that time.” Which does make sense as Resistance 3 was certainly the pinnacle to what the first two games were ultimately getting at thematically and stylistically. Insomniac’s success as a studio was probably what happened to Resistance. The team has been working on excellent projects like Sunset Overdrive, a Ratchet and Clank reboot, and now what appears to be their best work with Marvel’s Spider-man. With a team this busy expanding their reach, it makes sense that they wouldn’t want to go backwards.
Will the series carry on without Insomniac though? I think it’s entirely possible. With fans of the previous games still not even close to giving up hope for a new one, and still expressing interest on a regular basis, and Sony already showing that they’re willing to move on without the original team at the helm with the Playstation Vita’s Burning Skies, I think its safe to say that the series will make a return one day.
So, the question really is when it will make its return? Perhaps Insomniac isn’t out of the picture though. While they are currently busy wrapping up Spider-man now, Resistance 4 could very well be on the agenda for their next project. But like all matters of this sort, only time will tell.
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