Which Two Games Would You Smoosh Together?

Most people, if they get talking about their dream game, describe it in terms of other games they already like. As in: it’d be X crossed with Y but IN SPACE!. So I’m asking you, not for your dream game, but specifically which two games you’d cross-breed in order to create an odd new child?

What I like about this question is that you can answer it at whatever scale you like, selecting broad concepts or very specific moments and features. You can say that you’d cross Mirror’s Edge with SimCity, taking the big ideas from both to describe a game in which you design the cities you sprint and climb across; or you can be more exact and say that you’d like to combine that one scene in Fort Frolic from BioShock where you smash splicers to music with the procedural and turn-based combat of XCOM. This means that you can probably think of an idea quickly.

If you’re doing it with a crowd, it can also be a neat way to find out about games you might not have heard of or considered before, too. You’d like to combine the who-is-the-real-enemy mechanic of Spy Party with an open world game? Watch_Dogs did that, pretty much, with its ability to hack and stalk other players who thought they were alone in their singleplayer game while you pretended to be one of the NPC crowd.

The challenge however is to come up with interesting combinations. I’d love to add Dwarf Fortress’s simulation of individual dwarves’ moods to a lot of games, for example, but it’s not particularly interesting to say that I’d add it to games which are already simulations of lots of little people, such as SimCity. It’s marginally more interesting to say I’d add it to Euro Truck Simulator 2, but then I’d need to explain why. Perhaps to populate the world’s rest stops with procedural drivers and coffee drinkers who feel forlorn about things? I haven’t thought this through.

You don’t need to think it through either. Hop to the comments and regale us with descriptions of your own dreamy Frankengames.

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190 Comments

  1. Premium User Badge

    Harlander says:

    Back before Sims: Medieval came out, I was really hoping it’d be the sitcom-level character drama of the Sims series mixed with the grand historical-level character drama of Crusader Kings. Didn’t quite pan out like that, so I’m still waitin’

    • Andrew says:

      Many games could be combined profitably with Crusader Kings 2. My favourite combination would be Crusader Kings 2 set in the world of Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines (borrowing mechanics from the D&D setting Birthright, in terms of multiple levels of rulership – a bit like The Republic DLC did for CK2).

      A second would be CK2 set in the world of The Witcher.

      Admittedly neither are particularly unusual combination. But I’ve thought about both before.

  2. Premium User Badge

    Bracknellexile says:

    Merging the hacking mechanics of Invisible Inc with the manic real-world co-op of Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes. Want to break into the corporation’s servers or disable that camera? No longer can you rely on Incognita, instead it’s up to your friend back at Central to help, courtesy of a badly written, incomprehensible, corporate manual, before all the alarms go off!

    Because Invisible Inc. isn’t tense enough already :)

  3. Premium User Badge

    gritz says:

    Katamari Damacy and pinball.

    • Premium User Badge

      Nauallis says:

      Haha – You can only hit each surface and bumper once, but you get all the points if you hit every surface and bumper all at once.

      I’d play that, but probably I’d only get one chance.

      • Premium User Badge

        subdog says:

        I was thinking more like the paddles slowly move further and further away from each other and you have to keep growing your katamari ball big enough that it won’t fall into the gap.

  4. Premium User Badge

    Jekadu says:

    After reaching Suramar in Legion, I can safely say that I would preorder Assassin’s Creed: Warcraft.

  5. Premium User Badge

    Nauallis says:

    Hmm.

    Destiny and XCOM2 would be my go-to. And then probably Dark Heresy / Dawn of War and Final Fantasy Tactics. Also Rimworld and Stardew Valley.

    Hilariously bad: Lego and Grand Theft Auto; Witcher 3 and Pokemon; Titanfall and Ace Attorney.

    • Catesby says:

      I have a similar desire for a Mass Effect XCOM-like, probably tackling the First Contact War/Relay 314 Incident. It’s ripe for the sort of rapid development of the genre thanks to a united humanity encountering a foe increasingly willing to deploy advanced tech, plus it all ends in lovely diplomacy so we can skip that awkward Final Boss Mission bit (:

      • Premium User Badge

        Nauallis says:

        I was thinking the tuning and world of Destiny with battle mechanics of XCOM2. Ideally it would be Destiny (drops, guns, abilities, fireteam interaction) as a turn-based tactical combat game.

    • hoho0482 says:

      One of those already exist. Lego city undercover. Less hookers and only on Wii so no one played it….

    • Premium User Badge

      Overload-J says:

      XCOM plus SWAT4 – when the mission starts, you command the tactical teams directly in the 1st person interface, but the game still requires dedicated, careful tactical thinking to succeed.

    • Lomion says:

      Stardew Valley and Darkest Dungeon

  6. Premium User Badge

    Qazinsky says:

    Ok, then I choose Alpha Protocols deep and complex story systems played out in the big sandbox of Fallout New Vegas.

    Why, yes, that would probably be a gargantuan task, most likely impossible. Dream big or go home!

    Edit: Oh my god, imagine the bugs from that combination, what have I done.

    • Premium User Badge

      kfix says:

      While we’re dreaming big, I want Obsidian to mash up New Vegas and Mass Effect – a sprawling open world first person RPG set in the Citadel with multiple factions to interact with…

  7. Premium User Badge

    caff says:

    “Barbie Fashion Show: An Eye for Style” crossed with “Dying Light” would do for me.

    You have to lure zombines into a fashion show, dress them up in frilly pink dresses, and play a Guitar-Hero style game where you have to buzz them with cattle prods to make them stagger up and down the catwalk.

  8. Premium User Badge

    particlese says:

    I’ve been wrestling in my head with the mechanic and implementation details of a rhythm fighting game for a while, and I think I’m at the stage where I have to hunker down and actually try making a game before I can make any more progress. Named games in this mash-up would be OMF2097 in part since it’s my favorite fighting game, and I guess Rock Band since it’s the only rhythm game I’ve tolerated/enjoyed for any length of time.

    • Premium User Badge

      particlese says:

      Edit time trial fail: The general idea would be to end up with a more impactful, almost choreographed feel to a fight due to a dependence on the music. There are a million ways to go with this, though, so I’m not bothering with details here.

      Action movies seem to accidentally listen to their own music for a few seconds on occasion, and I love it when it happens. I imagine a fully musicked-up fight scene would be great, and that’s part of the inspiration here.

  9. Premium User Badge

    Jekadu says:

    Torment: Fallen London.

    Seriously. It would be so good.

  10. Da5e says:

    Earth Defence Force 2017 and literally every other computer game ever made. Name a game that wouldn’t be improved by GIANT INSECTS? You can’t.

  11. ldodds says:

    Dark Souls + Space Hulk.

    Labyrinthine space hulks, gene stealers, stompy power armour fashion, with the souls mechanics, action RPG style.

  12. Premium User Badge

    Head Bob says:

    Stalker: Gone Home

    A vast, moodily-lit wilderness full of vintage Soviet military hardware and weird weather, but really, no-one is trying to kill you, and it turns out one of the other stalkers is just trying to come out to his friends.

  13. Premium User Badge

    Der Zeitgeist says:

    Mass Effect and Elite: Dangerous. Space game of my dreams.

    • Zenicetus says:

      Hah! I was about to write that. One of my main disappointments with the Mass Effect series is the way they put the lead character in command of this amazing starship, and you never get to actually fly it in combat.

      I know it makes sense within the context, but I still thought it was a waste of potential for the Normandy to be just a glorified space bus and dormitory. A bit of hands-on Elite:D action between ground missions would be so much fun.

  14. baseless_drivel says:

    I’m not much into MMOs anymore, but I would totally play World of Starcraft, especially if it wasn’t a tab-target game. Maybe it’d play something like Tabula Rasa or Borderlands? Or hell, even something like Tera?

    The MMO market could use more quality sci-fi games. Most of the sci-fi MMOs that DO make it on the market tend to be disappointingly low-budget, or just swords and magic in space.

  15. Regicider 12.4% says:

    Desert Bus and Elite. In space.

    Idunno, Jagged Metal Gear Alliance: Advance Wars Tactics.
    Perhaps that’s stitching together too many monsters though.

  16. ErraticGamer says:

    Sid Meier’s Pirates overworld gameplay mixed with Crimson Skies license and combat.

    Dogfights over the ocean. Raids on airship fortresses with boarding sequences. Trading and diplomacy and romance and treasure hunting and general swashbuckley derring-do.

    Take the idea for free, somebody just get it done.

    • theblazeuk says:

      Ahh yes. That is in my go-to list of games I wish would be made. I’d love if there was some kind of management as well – e.g. extra money for heists, hire mercenaries as cover, bribe people for information, incur bounties etc.

    • Louis Mayall says:

      That sounds amazing. I wish someone would do something with the Crimson Skies franchise, I loved that game and its world. I want to go there again!

  17. Bowak says:

    The wonky Eisenhorn game (to get the WH40K universe and that your party’s headed by an inquisitor) + Mass Effect.

    So basically, a 40K Mass Effect. I think the mix of tech & powers would fit nicely, but with enough of a 40K edge that say, sometimes the Paragon option will be to summarily execute a civilian you hear criticising the Imperium’s heavy handedness, whereas the Renegade option would be to show them mercy, thus allowing their heretical views to spread and fester.

    • mandrill says:

      Instead of Paragon and Renegade, call them Puritan and Radical, to reflect their separation from our standard moral framework and the fact that the Imperium of Man are not necessarily the ‘good guys’ in the 40k mythos (hint: there are _no_ ‘good guys’). In your example, the Puritan course would be immediate execution of the heretic, while the Radical course lets them live.

  18. FireOfUnknownOrigin says:

    I would like to see a merge of Outlast and We Happy Few.

    I don’t know exactly how it would work, but I’d be damned if I didn’t throw all my money at the game.

  19. Biscuitry says:

    Diablo and Spore. No, really, hear me out.

    Take the nucleus of Spore’s cell and creature stages – using an absolutely smashing editor to design a species fit to overcome its neighbours – and mix it with a Diablolike loot treadmill for adding capabilities. Literally eat your enemies to steal their power.

    • Darloth says:

      See, I’d combine those two a different way.

      In one mode of gameplay you’d build up a hero character of some sort, but in the other mode you’d develop a range of different but complementary creatures that would act as antagonists in a level you design or at least influence in some way. Then, every level of the game is randomly picked (perhaps skewed by some sort of difficulty/style filter) from all the others that people have created.

    • Regicider 12.4% says:

      Call it Darkspore and shut it down on march 1st 2016 and it’s perfect.

  20. Catesby says:

    Sunless Seafall: A Legacy Game

    Elephant in the room first – this is going to be a board game!
    We take Rob Daviau’s mad, slightly overambitious tabletop 4X’em-up and bolt on Failbetter’s deliciously overambitious cannibal simulation. It gives Seafall a much-need infusion of purpose, with the Neathwise logic permitting even greater weirdness in the game’s changing legacy elements.

    It also gives the storybook section a huge boost with some of The Best Writing In Games Right Now. There’s more to say, but let us not spoil either game….
    Finally, it’s a pretty rad pun.

    • klops says:

      I also had Sunless Sea in my mind but I thought about mixing it with proper mechanics and keeping it a computer game.

      Sunless Sea + Pirates
      Sunless Sea + Space Rangers 2

      Of course, it would miss some of its charm but the working mechanics would make that up. Or then they could just get rid of the poor trading (as it was originally intended?) and forced tediousness completely and make the game a exploration magnate game, like someone suggested before.

  21. nomotog says:

    XCom + The sims. The idea is you would manage a quirky mini boss unit with powers and crippling personally issues. The game would work in two phases combat and base. The base would play like the sims where each member of your unit has different wants and needs that you need to try and balance so you can keep moral up long enough to get your work done. Out in combat, it would be an XCom like battle shooting, flanking, and moral based off the units base life. The two phases would feed into each other, a better base life means they do better in combat, and better combat means more loot to upgrade the base.

  22. theblazeuk says:

    XCOM & Freedom Force.

    It’s been mentioned before by writers on this very website, but how awesome would it be….

  23. Reset says:

    Final Fantasy Tactics + Left4Dead

    Or really any unit based tactics game with heavy unit customization and skill progression (Blood Bowl, XCom, etc) combined with mission-based online co-op multiplayer. Give me the option to play it as either asynchronous multiplayer or get a live game going with friends.

  24. Scodi says:

    So the predictable answer first:

    – No Man’s Sky and a game with gameplay

    Also

    Lemmings and Tetris: Try and save the lemmings that are the wrong shape while the others fill your pit

    Crusader Kings 2 and Skyrim: Play through the intruige, crusades and sedution of crusader kings in glorious first person

    Arkanoid and Pong: Oh, wait, their the same game already

    Grand Theft Auto and Scrabble: Steal letters from around town to spell out that an awesome ride

  25. gpown says:

    Witcher 3 with DmC’s fluid combat, and Elite: Dangerous with a Ubisoft open-worlder.

    hey, by the way I’ve just logged in without passing the human check…

  26. Rao Dao Zao says:

    Unreal Tournament and any BioWaRPG you can name.

    1. Pulse-pounding arena combat
    2. Team-management, relationships with competitors, grudge matches with narrative justification, obtaining sponsorship

    Basically, the UT99 singleplayer ladder with a whole heap of narrative- and character-driven decoration around it. Avatar customisation with billions of cosmetic options (purchasable with in-game money earned in matches?), romance (“their eyes met across a crowded deathmatch”), team management for the team ladders (loyalty missions?), conspiracy adventure (Xan has the whole thing rigged)…

    It would be totes amazeballs. I enjoyed UT3 for the daft hammy nonsense that it was, but a proper tournament story that embraced the overblown insanity and pro-wrestling commentation in-universe would be tip top.

    • DasBilligeAlien says:

      I always wanted the unreal campaign to be more like a real sports game. That would be awesome!

      Unreal Championship was closest to that feeling. But lacked all the decisions. But narrative wise it was very close.

  27. thelastpointer says:

    Cyberpunk GTA. With flying cars!

    Far Cry3 + Unreal’98 (no ridiculous story pls).

    • Premium User Badge

      Mungrul says:

      There was actually a game somewhat like this, one of American McGee’s experiments: Scrapland.
      I quite like it, but it didn’t review well and kinda sunk without a trace.
      Never did get around to completing it; I’ll have to dig it out and do that some day. It’s probably worse than I remember.

      • Premium User Badge

        john_silence says:

        Nice call.
        I didn’t go very far in Scrapland because it got a bit repetitive and well, something else came along I guess, but I remember it as a fine open-world sci-fi noir oddball of a game, quite underrated.

      • thelastpointer says:

        Thank you for the suggestion! It seems it’s free to download on some sites, not sure if I trust them though.

  28. Mr Chug says:

    Wurm Online + The Ship

    Carve out a life as the inhabitant of a feudal world. PvP is disabled except against one specific other person somewhere in the realm, who you only know by name and broad location. Kill them and your reward is a massive wealth boost. Get caught doing so, or be killed by your hunter, and you’re back to the bottom of the social ladder with a fresh character.

  29. A Gentleman and a Taffer says:

    Knights of the Old Republic and Alien:Isolation. Basically get Creative Assembly to do their amazing work recreating the Alien universe and use it to make the ultimate Star Wars game, with FPS controls, Bioware character writing, shiny graphics and amazing attention to detail. Umm Mmm.

    • A Gentleman and a Taffer says:

      For something a bit more interesting, how about X-Com 2 and Democracy 3, in which you campaign for the political party of your choice by upgrading your battle bus, up-skilling your volunteers, and shooting any opposition with plasma rifles?

    • theblazeuk says:

      Hmm. For a second I thought you meant an Aliens RPG a la KOTOR and thought “Nah not sure” but now I see you mean Star Wars: Isolation. I too would love Dark Forces 3.

    • Premium User Badge

      duns4t says:

      Have you played SW: Battlefront (2015)? Honestly it is the best recreation of a universe I’ve seen, including Alien: Isolation. Pity there’s no single-player campaign, but if they used that engine and those assets it’d be the perfect casing for a delicious (Bioware-written) Dark Forces 3.

  30. C0llic says:

    Ziggurat and Doom (new or old). Great game, but it would be even better with Id feeling weapons.

    • Premium User Badge

      john_silence says:

      I’d go for Doom 3 + a point’n’click adventure game.

      Stasis is a bit like that. But this would be in 1st-person. The ponderous, claustrophobic exploration of a derelict, stumbling upon logs, slowly making sense of the aftermath of an Event Horizon type scenario. Sinister but not dangerous or violent.

      A bit like Dead Space except you’d be a proper engineer, exploring, fixing stuff and restoring the ship functions, instead of shooting the monsters that the space marines have wiped off before you boarded – let’s just hope they got them all… *gulps*

  31. walrus1 says:

    Mass Effect’s back story, galactic politics, technology, and space exploration with Skyrim’s massive world and grey mortality. My god that would be amazing.

  32. Premium User Badge

    Lacero says:

    Grow (the little flash games) and Civilization.
    I’m trying for procjam, I’ll never finish it and have no art ability so it will look bad either way :)

  33. Banyan says:

    Pandemic + DEFCON = competitive biological warfare

  34. Zenicetus says:

    Divinity Original Sin with Witcher 3’s writing quality for story and quest design.

    Might be fun to go the other way too… a Witcher 3 fantasy action/RPG with DoS’s combat system, although it probably wouldn’t work with just one character. So maybe mash together the larger parties in Dragon Age with Witcher 3’s writing quality and DoS’s combat system. Yeah, that’d be fun.

  35. brulleks says:

    The stealth mechanics and world-design of Thief: The Dark Project with the Elder Scrolls games’ open world and RPG system.

    As to why? Well, come on…

    • klops says:

      And the combat heavily inspired from Dark Messiah of Might and Magic. Perhaps a little less kicky, but having some feel in it.

      “But what about the role playing aspect!? It is good that while your combat skills are bad, your sword just slashes the air when hitting your opponent.” No it isn’t dear imaginary commenter. Make the sword swing’s power, speed and accuracy relative to your skills. So a 20 swordsmanship would make slow and easy to block strikes while a 100 swordsmanship would hit with a furious speed and force and opened useful new strikes insted of the silly-slashes of Oblivion, for example. You’d get immediate feedback while you improved.

      • brulleks says:

        I was thinking more of neutralising the combat, as in Thief, and making stealth the focus of the game, but sure, a bit of DMOMAM’s shenanigans could fit quite well for stealthy takedowns as well – creeping up behind enemies and kicking them off the top of a mountain before they even see you.

        • klops says:

          Ahh, I misunderstood. I thought it as Elder scroll games as they are but with better stealth and world design. Yeah, absolutely.

  36. DasBilligeAlien says:

    Overlord & Dungeon Keeper

    With some sprinkles of modern open world stuff.

  37. mandrill says:

    Fallout Shelter, and the Fallout FPS/RPG series.

    You build a vault, train and equip your residents then send them out on missions/exploring and you can choose to take control of them as in the Fallout FPS. In multi-person missions you would control one and the others would act as companions.

    Make the world above multiplayer and you can trade with other player’s vaults, or invade them…

  38. spleendamage says:

    Football Manager + Blood Bowl

    You know, either way you want to mash this up, I would play it.
    Contracts and pressers for the horde, or death and dismemberment on the pitch.

  39. preshrunk_cyberpunk says:

    Shadowrun (anything, although Dragonfall was my favorite) and Pillars of Eternity.

  40. w0bbl3r says:

    A telltale version of Metro 2033?
    Or maybe metro done like the witcher 3? So it’s huge open world, but where you really need to stock up on supplies to go on the surface for any extended period. But it also has the great storytelling of the witcher 3’s strongest quests, side quests and characters, but with stories from the metro 2033 world.
    That would be my perfect game. And I don’t mean stalker, because that just didn’t quite capture the storytelling and became ridiculously easy once you got armour and a good assault rifle.

    For an oddball…… don’t starve mixed with something like soma. Maybe have the soma virtual life where the characters are trying to reach at the end, but it’s become all twisted and so you have to survive in it, don’t starve-style.

  41. Premium User Badge

    Mungrul says:

    Quake (the original) and Total War. Masses of Quake Rangers besieging Cthulhu-esque castles. Even better, make every unit playable by an individual player, making it more like MAG in the Quake universe.

  42. arcum42 says:

    Skyrim and Stardew Valley. Seriously, I’d spend so much time in that, it’s ridiculous.

  43. dare says:

    Endless Legend + Bioware RPG

    Basically, I want to play a group of fantasy scoundrels in an imaginative setting, looting and pillaging in the cracks while mighty empires clash around them.

  44. Superpat says:

    I dont know, how about Mount and Blade mixed with Crusader Kings? I’d love to personally command my lunatic one legged king as he conquers those pesky heathens.

    Or that dwarf fortress adventure mode in Stellaris. (Ideally with the graphics of elite or star citizen instead of ascii)

    I would also love to play a mix of Dominions and Heroes of Might and Magic.

    • brulleks says:

      I’d go for Mount and Blade 2 (from what I’ve seen of it so far) with the visceral combat of Chivalry, but the level of potential story depth in CK2 would definitely be an added bonus – as long as the systems were simplified for the strategy-game averse such as myself.

  45. klops says:

    Close Combat style city map (top view, beautiful, camera pretty far) adventure where you’d try to solve stuff in “Sherlock Holmes – Consultive Detective” boardgame style and you’d also turned werewolf occasionally. So it’d be an adventure/deduction game during daytime and a Hotline Miamish stealth/slaughtering during nighttime. Yes.

    • klops says:

      I haven’t solved yet during my coffee breaks should it be a open city, something along the first GTAs, or a series of locations and districts in a bigger map like in Close Combat where they would be like locations in an adventure game or levels in Hotline Miami. Perhaps the latter works better since I prefer structure and good design instead of open world sandbox possibilites.

  46. TheAngriestHobo says:

    Consortium and The Witcher 3. Take the sci-fi, ship-based RPG gameplay of Consortium, and give it the budget, scope, and combat complexity of TW3. It would be magical.

  47. skyturnedred says:

    Alpha Protocol and Splinter Cell: Blacklist. Blacklist already supports multiple playstyles, so all you need to add is the RPG aspects from AP.

  48. int says:

    Grim Fandango and Call of Duty

  49. Billtvm says:

    Tropico 4 and Just Cause 2. You could build a tropical Island fiefdom, or you could single handedly try to destabilize one.

  50. BluePencil says:

    Crusader Kings 2 and Democracy 3. Modern politics setting with trying to pass legislation while also briefing against and perhaps even murdering your cabinet colleagues in your fight to become Prime Minister.

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