Tag Archives: playstation 2

The Faithfulness And Artistry of The “Shadow of the Colossus” Remake

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Shadow of the Colossus is one of my top games of all time. It’s my “desert island game.” I’ve probably completed it close to 20 times and closely examined its art over the decade plus since its original release. So of course I had the special edition of the PlayStation 4 remake pre-ordered, but I was also one of the people more anxious about how faithful a different art and development team would be to the original 2005 PlayStation 2 version.

Many video games get remakes because of the inherently technical nature of the medium and industry. Most people think that with most games simply tossing in more silicon, adding finer details, and implementing more realistic lighting will always improve the experience. Colossus in particular is known as a game that was let down by the hardware of its time. The PS2 version runs sluggishly, and it fakes a lot of visual effects that aren’t suppose do be possible on the PS2. Arguably it’s exactly the kind of game that needs a remake.

Colossus however is also mostly known for its art direction and atmosphere. It was distinct in 2005 and remains distinct today. It’s a very delicate thing that wouldn’t be easy for an entirely different group of people to maintain while adding details with a system two hardware generations and a decade removed from the original version.

There are even a few articles out bringing up some good points about the act of even trying to add detail to a game like Colossus: One from USGamer alleges that the PS4 version looks too much like other video games now. Another from Eurogamer (same parent company) alleges that adding a bunch of detail turns the PS4 version into an inherently different experience that can’t erase the original.

Before my PS4 copy arrived from Amazon I went back through the PS2 version for the first time in years (on a standard definition CRT in fact). After a single run through the PS4 game, I think I half agree with the aforementioned articles. There is a push and pull between the two versions, but the PS4 version makes some significant achievements even as its own game. Continue reading

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The PlayStation Games I’d Re-Buy On Xbox, If They Were Added To Backwards Compatibility

On the week’s events: A lot happened this week, especially on Thursday. I got nothin’ personally, just more links you’ll see at the bottom of this blog post to articles I think you should read. Meanwhile, this post is something I’ve had in the tank for a while.

Also: I posted a review of AER: Memories of Old on Steam. http://steamcommunity.com/profiles/76561197983276232/recommended/331870

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Microsoft’s recent shifts towards a policy of backwards compatibility — emulating Xbox 360 and original Xbox games on the Xbox One, letting you use original discs, and even improving those games for free, are setting a precedent in my view against Sony’s treatment of legacy software on PlayStation. This has reached the point where there are games I bought on PlayStation which I’ve thought about re-buying for Xbox because of Microsoft’s policies if they ever become backwards compatible. Continue reading

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Late To The Party: Grand Theft Auto San Andreas, And Why GTA Online Took Over

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I’m coming up towards the end of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas now but I’m going to go ahead and write this LTTP blog about it because I don’t know if I’m going to finish the game.

I have made blog posts in the past about my struggles with GTA games, but I wanted to take one last crack at San Andreas before actually starting the copy of Grand Theft Auto V I bought years ago. I ran into some of the same problems as before and overall I don’t think San Andreas stands the test of time, but from it I also learned some important things about sandbox games which may point to why GTA is so beloved, why Grand Theft Auto Online has taken over its destiny, and what’s wrong with other sandbox games. Continue reading

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Ico After 15 Years, Last Guardian Expectations

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As we head into fall 2016 we head into the 15th anniversary of fall 2001, which was a pretty major year in video gaming. Two console launches, and the absolutely monster lineup of exclusives for the PlayStation 2. One console will probably never again get so many major exclusives in such a short amount of time. One of the first of these anniversaries seems to be Ico. Continue reading

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10 Years Later: Final Fantasy XII Should Have Been The Future Of Console RPGs

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So Final Fantasy XII is 10 years old (in Japan). I usually don’t say a lot about the anniversaries of individual entries in game franchises, but this one stands out for me. FFXII is easily my favorite main Final Fantasy game, and the first point where I made a legitimate effort to get into the series. More than that though, I look back on it as a critical turning point for where console role-playing games could have gone in contrast to where they actually went. Continue reading

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PS2 Anniversary: A Hater’s Perspective

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I didn’t put it on my anniversary list but the PlayStation 2 is 15 years old in North America today, and I think this is a good chance for me to repost what I consider one of my better blogs from back at 1up.com — the one I made for the console’s 10th anniversary in 2010. I think it’s still worth looking at it today because I came at the anniversary from sort of a unique perspective — that of someone who disliked the console at first, begrudgingly accepted its importance later on, and only started to like it after it was on the downturn.

You may also note that I kind of ignored the 30th anniversary of the NES, and that’s because I don’t really know what I could say about it that hasn’t been said. The original Nintendo Entertainment System was pretty much the background radiation or the foundation of console gaming for an entire generation of humans. Its significance is kind of ever-present in terms of market penetration if you live in Japan or North America. I also kind of expected the game industry at large and Nintendo itself to make a bigger deal of the NES’s anniversary than it did.

Anyway, the PS2. Anything I would say about it looking back today I basically already said in 2010 on 1up, so here it is, re-edited for the present day and present time. Continue reading

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