Sometimes, I dream about video games. Usually I dream about video games that haven’t been released yet, inside some warped future reality.
But the other night I had a different kind of dream. I was playing a video game that doesn’t exist.
A game that really should exist.
Who remembers Unirally?
Unirally was a real paradox: a game so simple you could pick up and play easily; a game so unique it defies easy definition. Put literally, Unirally was a game where you guide riderless unicycles around insane, winding tracks -- but really it was a game about harnessing speed, about pushing your ability to feel comfortable at those speeds.
It was a game about doing fully sick stunts bro. Fully.
Unirally, without question, was fully sick.
In Unirally your ability to go stupidly fast was governed by your ability to perform ridiculously complex tricks, your ability to continue taking risks at high speed by performing increasingly difficult tricks. It was a game where milliseconds count. It was compelling as hell.
Now, back to that dream I was having, about the video game that doesn’t exist.
I was playing a sequel to Unirally. A sequel that, for some ungodly reason, still doesn’t exist.
It was in virtual reality. I can’t explain why. It was clean and hi-res. It was 60 frames-per-second smooth. It had online leaderboards that allowed me to watch speed runs I couldn’t possibly compete with. It had a separate leaderboard featuring my friend’s best times so I could compete with those. It had little Unirally ghosts. It had a camera that started in tight, but zoomed out the faster I went. The sense of speed was otherworldly.
It was lean, clean and mean. The controls hadn’t changed much, just a little more tactile. A few more tricks to perform, a few more possibilities. It was a game built for human performance, for Twitch streams and YouTube highlight videos, for PewDiePie screaming at a frequency beyond human comprehension. A game that made you punch walls. A game that made dogs bark.
It was a simple game, not full price. Not in 2016. I bought this game for $15 on Steam, on Xbox Live. It came free this month on PlayStation Plus. It came out in April. A dead zone for big titles, it had found its niche.
It was beautiful.
Then I woke up.
I woke up and I asked myself, ‘why does this game not exist? Why are we living in the year of our lord 2016 without a sequel to Unirally?’ It makes no goddamn sense.
Unirally ticks every box I can possibly imagine.
We currently have a tremendous base of people, now in their late 20s and 30s who remember this game fondly. They have money to burn and a childhood they want to return to. They have nostalgia. They want to drown in this nostalgia.
We have digital platforms that are perfect for a game like Unirally. We have the PlayStation Network, we have Xbox LIVE. We have Steam.
The audience is there, the delivery method is there. All we need is the game itself.
Someone needs to make that last part happen.