Ooh, creative expression.~
Not sure if I would call this “modernizing”, but at least these are changes/additions to the series I would make for a hypothetical, new game. Lord knows we could use one of those.Gameplay Mechanics
Mostly the same, but use trigger buttons to shoot a windbullet into the foreground/background. Being able to shoot while running would be very helpful. Maybe you should be able to shoot up and down too? LV boarding segments will make a return.
A lot of enemies have their own attack patterns, making grabbing them another part of the challenge. They'll be ones whose sole purpose is to harm you, and new enemies that grant you new powers, like one that protects you from above while holding it, or one that gives you multiple projectiles you have to throw to get rid of.
Elements from the GBA games would be an amazing addition, such as the Box, the timed Boomie (should probably be made into a different species of enemy to differentiate their functions from regular Boomies), and the arrows (which should also have a redesign.) Collectables/Extras
For every vision you met a set Dreamstone quota, you unlock a piece of exclusive concept art. Special collectibles in each vision include three stars that unlock a door to a short challenge stage where you can win a medal. For every medal you collect you unlock a costume set, which derives from Klonoa's various past outfits and designs, as well as some of his friends and foes (and possibly random Namco characters). You can even mix and match costume parts. In each vision there are also six bubbles of nightmares trapping fragments of a very short passage. When all bubbles in the game are popped, the resulting entry will tell of something incredibly important to the lore...
You'll also unlock an extremely challenging Extra Vision, where everything you've learned will be put to the test. If you collected all medals when you finish this vision, you'll unlock a second Extra Vision, complete with obstacles that literally troll you.
Finally, if you manage to survive this with all concept art unlocked, you'll be treated to the True Final Vision, comprising of a cruel three-phase boss. If you're strong enough to defeat it, you'll experience a special story segment. If you're crazy enough to defeat it with the hardest difficulty settings, you'll experience an incredibly important extra segment.
As an homage to Balue's Tower, the first two Extra Visions will have hilarious cutscenes that pay no attention to continuity or reason. (For example, in the second one Klonoa boards away from a giant Pac-Man with Stepping Wind playing in the background.) However, the third will actually reveal how Klonoa managed to come back to this dream world after he leaves at the end of the game. Custom Difficulty
Before you start a new game, you can select from a few difficulty options:
Hearts: Twelve, Six, Three.
Windbullet: Long or Short range
After you fully complete all visions with three hearts and short range windbullet, you'll unlock one-hit KO, as well as Nightmare Mode, where all enemies have chaotic attack patterns and no items appear except for checkpoints and the 100 dreamstone life-up bonus. Twelve hearts would be useful in this mode.Aesthetic/Atmosphere
While I know the Wiimake is preeeetty controversial among the community, I personally think this is THE most beautiful game in the series, aesthetically speaking at least. Detailed backgrounds, vibrant colors... I would actually love to have this style of... well, style, in a new game, only with 60 FPS next-gen graphics, motion-blur optional. Regarding the design of the world: I think the overall atmosphere should more closely follow the "dream" aesthetic. Not really making every vision LV's Maze of Memories, more so just being a little more varied and creative with the theming. Not exactly sure how tbh
In the vein of DTP, menu screens such as vision select and options could follow a pop-up book aesthetic. As you progress in the game, you'd unlock visions in an overworld similar to LV's, but comprised of a foldable map coming from the book, complete with pop-up displays.Music
I have a fondness for the delectable techno/European folk (is that what it was?) fusion of DTP, but I also loved the more varied, fleshed-out orchestral soundtrack of LV. Why not integrate all of these genres, only this time with a real orchestra? Also more slap bass. Not kidding.Story
I've heard some people complain that Klonoa games follow a basic anime plotline. Personally, I immensely enjoyed LV's story, but I can imagine how some aspects of it fit into that mold. Cliche or not, I feel like the story has even greater potential, and I'd like to see it fulfilled.
Furthermore, it would be a dream come true if there were some way all of the games could fit into a concrete timeline (none of that "they're dreams, so it doesn't matter" junk).
I might add to this later, but so far this is what I’d do.