5 GAMES THAT NEED TO BE MADE - Nier x Drakengard Universe
(This new article series “Games that need to be made” is where I pitch 5 games that need to be made in a particular franchise, company, genre etc... If you enjoy and want more of these lists let me know in the comments on social media! Tell us which of these 5 was your favorite, and what franchise or theme you want to see next!)
The Nier universe is a gorgeous, weird, and super fun game universe. Nier Automata is an absolutely amazing game that introduced me to the universe. It lead to the creation of our Nier Gi Channel Nierinfinite. This amazing game, filled with amazing characters had me excited for the Nier Replicant remaster that I am working on now and the upcoming Nier Reincarnation. Nier Automata had an amazing character in 2B and stood out with super fluidic combat. This has me thinking the Nier universe would be ripe for the "5 Games" series treatment! Below are 5 games I want to see set in the Nier or spiritual Drakengard multiverse.
We have a special thanks to Nier fanS who has regularly supplied us with fun image content in the past. They have helped us bring some of this series installment to life! Please give special thanks to Mariia aka @fenyachan, Alifia, and Ljudmila who helped bring these pitches to life!
5. Nier Awakening
I want to stipulate that I am far from an expert of the complicated, expansive, and parallel universe filled timeline that makes up the Nier/Drakengard universe. However, from the perspective of the games, the appearance of humanlike androids and AI seems to just poof into existence. Both Replicant and Automata takes place in the distant distant future where civilization has fallen, and machines existing. However, between the two games, it seems that advanced AI and humanoid androids appear on the scene. We suddenly have advanced AI capable of passing the Turing test in the distant post human existence of Earth. What I would love to see is a game that is set at the dawn of AI on the world. I want to see the first AI gain consciousness. Maybe we can see humanity going into space and trying to reestablish civilization before falling again. I absolutely love sci-fi that tackles the dawn of AI like Detroit Become Human, or in films like Ex Machina. Nier Awakening is a game that takes place during the birth of AI in the Nier multiverse, where the first Android character emerges. It maintains the action adventure gameplay, but with a focus on character choice. Does the first Android turn on humanity or fight for them? Who are the forces behind the anti-machine movement and those pushing for a machine future? I want a story about AI that takes place between the thousands of years between the two games.
(Image used with permission from cosplayer Mariia aka @fenyachan)
4. Nier Versus
I was a huge fan of the Soulcalibur universe nearly a decade before ever playing a Nier game, and when SOULCALIBUR 6 released, I was ecstatic. I loved that game so much, and to this day still has one of the most fun character creators in a game to date. I loved 2B in Nier Automata and when she was announced for SC6 I was super excited to play as her again. One thing having 2B in Soul Caliber made me remember is just how absolutely gorgeous her combat and move set is. The fluidic almost dance like nature of the android move set makes for an absolutely fun watch in a fighting game. 2B has hands down the best fighting animations for the game, and it makes me want an entire Nier universe fighting game. Nier Versus is a fighting game with new and recurring characters from all the Nier Automata, Reincarnation, Replicant, and the Drakengard franchise so far such as 2B, 9S, A2, Kaine, Zero and others. It would also feature a android or human character creator where you can create a custom fighter in the Nier aesthetic. It could feature maps from across the Nier and Drakengard games, as well as a variety of weapons.
3. Nier Automata 2
Sequels to games that have widespread multiple endings can be incredibly hard. It is tempting to only make spin offs or prequels when your game ends with vastly different endings. However, that being said, I think that a sequel to Nier Automata 2 that continues the story for 2B would be worth the effort. It would be worth the effort to craft a sequel that continues 2B's story in some way, perhaps even incorporating the decisions players made in the original in some way; something akin to Mass Effect's story import system. 2B simply has some of the best combat, and one of the most likable android characters in gaming. Her stoic soldier demeanor just works, and watching her almost dance with her enemies is such an amazing thing to play. Plus Nier Automata was a commercial and critical success, so I think that a sequel is a reasonable business decision for Square Enix and Platinum.
(Image used with permission from cosplayer Mariia aka @fenyachan)
2. Drakengard 3 Remake
There is one game that was a PS3 exclusive that I never got to play because I didn't own a PS3 at the time, and eventually got a PS4 to which it has never been ported! It also never came to PC. The Drakengard series is trapped on the old playstation consoles and with the dawn of the PS5 they are long past due for a remaster, or even a full remake. The gameplay and the setting looked really cool, and I always regretted not being able to play. The Drakengard games are spiritual predecessors from the Nier games, and have a Final Fantasy style multiverse level connection to the Nier games. That being said, I included the characters and games as eligible for this discussion.
At the very least, I would like to see these games saved from the eventual (now redacted but still probably inevitable) digital death of the PS3, with a simple 4K Upscaled Remaster. Just go through and use Machine Learning to upscale the resolution and textures. However, what I would much rather prefer, would be if we got a Demon Souls level remake where the game is given a major ground up overhaul.
(Image used with permission from cosplayer Alifia)
Nier Automata on Nintendo Switch
1. Untitled Nier Project - Custom Character Fantasy RPG
My number one pitch is an untitled Nier RPG for an open world game set in the Nier universe. Now, One could ask that because Nier Automata is technically an action JRPG, how does this differ? What I mean is I want a new game set in the extended universe, but is less of a linear story and more a traditional open RPG. In my untitled JRPG, players create their own Yorha Android. This game has a even greater focus on traditional RPG elements like loot, weapons, abilities, crafting, with your Android being able to heavily customize their outfit, appearance, weapons. It would contain companions, romance, and more side quests. This is also far less linear with an expansive open world with a greater focus on exploration in a vast open world. Where Nier Automata had a slightly more traditional single player story, with a named protagonist, this is more open. I love the character designs of Yorha Androids, and I think that they could make for an amazing create your own character creator. You can pick a male or female android, and choose between different play styles and weapon methods. It could expand on Automata and feature interesting elements such as semi-permadeath, where you have to rebuild a new Android and retrieve all your loot upon death. I think the Nier universe would benefit from a game with wider combat, appearance, and narrative.
(Image used with permission from cosplayer Ljudmila)
If you enjoyed this article, stay tuned for more "5 Games" lists, and much more on Game Infinite social media. Tell us in the social's comments which pitch you liked best and what games you want to see get made!