[Friday Five] Games that Should Get Standalone Releases

In Feature, Friday Five by Paul Arroyo

With the popularity of Far Cry 3’s retro-futuristic standalone expansion, Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon, it’s got us thinking about which other popular games we’d like to see get the same treatment. Red Dead Redemption did it with its Undead Nightmare expansion, years before the recent trend with both Blood Dragon and Strike Suit Infinity. What follows are five games we think could potentially have interesting standalone additions.


Bioshock Infinite

With Bioshock Infinite fresh in everyone’s mind, some are left wanting more. “There’s always a lighthouse. There’s always a man. There’s always a city,” can lead to several scenarios of another Bioshock game. But continuing along with Booker and Elizabeth, a few of us would like to see them visit an alternate universe outside of Columbia. The reference of the first Bioshock at the end of the game gave us a glimpse of where we could visualize Booker and Elizabeth, which is perfect for an additional adventure and one that hardly requires players’ progress in Infinite to be played, making it a perfect title for this new route of content delivery.



Dunwall makes for an interesting city all on its own. It’s inhabited by rats, thugs, nobles, and politicians. The supernatural elements only add to the already shadowy atmosphere. The gameplay design of “play how you want” is one many gamers find entertaining. Actions heavily weighed in as to how the player was going to be affected by the environment. Killing more people meant more rats and more weepers. A storyline in which you have to be cautious of your actions could carry over one of Dishonored‘s key features but perhaps to a different character. The direction of the mood could also be made the complete opposite, perhaps a light-hearted one, to make for a hilarious alternative.


Call of Duty

Call of Duty is one of the most successful franchises of all time. Treyarch’s popular Zombies mode even goes so far as to compel gamers into buying the next iteration of a Call of Duty game just for Zombies. These gamers actually think, “Single-player campaign? Team Deathmatch? Nah, I just want to kill some zombies.” If any standalone game would be certain to sell a lot of copies by drawing in the gamers who only want to play a certain mode at a value price it would be a standalone version of Call of Duty’s Zombies.


DmC: Devil May Cry

The addictive nature of Devil May Cry’s combo system could transfer well into a separate storyline. Although Vergil’s Downfall failed to meet expectations, using Dante’s evil twin brother could still prove to be a satisfying addition to the Devil May Cry series on its very own, provided Capcom takes the time to smooth out the animations. An entirely new character and different set of skills does not need to be related to Dante’s main story in Devil May Cry, therefore it need not be attached to Devil May Cry in order to be published.


Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance

Metal Gear Rising’s fast-paced action is just something I can’t get enough of. One of the key gameplay features, Zandatsu, never seems to get old. Metal Gear Rising already has one DLC for our favorite Spanish cyborg, Samuel “Jetstream” Rodriguez, and has another due for release May 14 (Xbox 360) and May 15 (PS3) for Blade Wolf. Both DLCs have players take the role of a completely new character. Each could easily have a been a standalone. For some players, Raiden alone might have not been enough to gain their interest, especially because a major complaint had been Metal Gear Rising’s six-hour campaign. The addition of new characters with different stories and skill sets might intrigue some gamers to the overall theme and entice them to give the base game a shot.

There are an endless amount of possibilities for “what if” scenarios in a standalone expansion for a game. Whether we’ll see a lot more developers taking this approach for DLC is uncertain. Much of the DLC we see is so different from the main game that it can do well on its own. A well-established engine and entertaining gameplay elements can keep a gamer coming back for more, and not necessarily in the same universe.

Do you have any ideas for a standalone game for any of your favorite games? Let us know in the comments below!

Paul Arroyo[Friday Five] Games that Should Get Standalone Releases