Which Olympic 'sport' would make the best videogame?

Posted on 08/16 16:02 in | 0

The Olympics. Truly a wondrous festivales of human achievement, where a person can push her, or him, self to mental and physical extremes over 14 hours of tennis in debilitating 30 degree heat to claim a gold medal after vanquishing a 6'6" final boss who fires rubber balls at 140mph – or tap dance on a horse. Whatever comes more naturally.

In a serious, analytic, and in no-way opportunistic look at this carnarval of meritocratic physicality, here's four sports we'd love to see turned into video-games. Look: it's no more stupid than the concept of an Italian plumber and a talking hedgehog in trainers burying a 16 year feud in order to sell video-games licensed to a quad-yearly sports event, so… look, over there, it's Sebastian Coe performing synchronised dives with Crash Bandicoot!

My least favourite thing about all sports is that they take place in this dimension. I want to draft in Alice games creator American McGee to work messed-up magic over the once-Olympic sport of croquet (yes, really, in 1900). Flamingo mallets and hedgehog balls?  Nah. Let’s have balls transforming into tar-puking doll heads, sprouting limbs and chasing your foe off the lawn if you hit theirs. Wickets are booby- trapped, clobbering foes to death with your mallet is legal, and adorable gothic tea-dresses mandatory. Twinkle, twinkle, little batsh*t insane. My kind of sport.

Corruption is the buzzword currently uniting world sport, and it’s high time it got its own gaming tie-in. Enter decision-rich sports sim Glory Hunter. Think FIFA 17 – with new Journey mode – crossed with Heavy Rain. How far will you go to win? Covering a four-year training cycle, pick your sport, find the best coaches to level up your skills, and compete in events while deciding how to handle other opportunities... The world of doping, evading testers and bribing officials might mean better results, but a bust means losing it all. Come gold medal day, will you beat your opposition and the blood tests?  

Trampolining has never been given the thoughtful videogame treatment, which is odd when you think how easy it would be to create a control scheme that suits pulling off acrobatic spins and twirls. Left stick controls horizontal spins and right stick produces vertical flips. Simple. You then have the freedom to craft spectacular somersaults in a similar way to how Skate allows you to pull off realistic tricks. Add the importance of timing bounces, and you’ve got a digital version of the sport that’s as satisfying as the real one – and certainly less vomit- inducing. You’d be flipping mad not to snap it up.  

Upcoming PS VR comedy game Job Simulator casts you as a worker in, among other things, a boring office – your goal being to muddle through a day of rubber-stamping and form-filing without destroying the place.  I want an expansion set in a sports doping agency – the Yin to Andy’s Yang idea. I want to be shaking test tubes and dropping pipettes of solution on slides, all while battling against out-of-control centrifuges (yellow liquid everywhere!), fixing the samples the work experience kid mixed up (budget cuts, natch), and binning the envelopes stuffed with roubles to stop my staff from adjusting results.  

That's just our suggestions for 'sports' that would make great games – which are certain to be snapped up by a budding indie developer who'll inevitably make their fortune and be forced to retire to the Galapagos islands in a fortress made of solitude and gummy bears – but if you'd like to suggest your own ideas, feel free to share them in the comments below. We'll definitely read them all.


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