Tag Archives: retro

What Else Could Capcom Realistically Remaster And Remake?

Capcom's Resident Evil 2 remake

Capcom just indicated it’s open to more remakes and remasters of its classic games, and now everybody’s all excited. Honestly I wonder if there’s a whole lot more Capcom could do in that area, thinking about the market and the conditions surrounding each of its franchises. Continue reading

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Virtual Console, And The Two Ways Platform Holders Are Maintaining Classic Games

 

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Virtual Console, one of my main hopes for the Nintendo Switch, isn’t coming to the system. Oh classic games are being and will continue to be released for the system, but that wasn’t the point. Virtual Cosnole represented the prospect of something Nintendo seems to have left behind today. Today there seem to be two main ways in which companies are bringing back classic games. Continue reading

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Why Some Games Really Do Deserve Remakes

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I finally started catching up with the Yakuza series a few months ago. I’d played the games since the English version of the original came out in 2006 but fell off at some point after Yakuza 4. After recently finishing 5 and Zero I’ve just started Kiwami — the remake of the original. To me, it feels oddly like a PS2 game, for better or worse. Continue reading

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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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Video Game Anniversaries That Will Occur in 2018

2018 is going to be a pretty big year for anniversaries in video games because it’s the 20th anniversary of 1998, often considered the greatest year of video games sever.

Unlike other years people may point out (like 2001 or 2007), 1998 saw the release of a lot of genre-defining games as well as the first entries in major franchises people still play today. It was arguably the most influential year in terms of what people are playing right now.

It’s hard to say what any of the publishers of these games will do to commemorate the anniversaries. Capcom is already giving us multiple impressive anthologies of its classic games this year. Maybe some anniversaries will be observed with “anniversary packs” of items for modern service-driven games. Continue reading

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Crysis After 10 Years: The Future Of Shooters That Never Was

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The original Crysis turned 10 this week and every article I’ve seen observing this event has been a return to the “Can it run Crysis?” meme, perpetuating the myth that the game was only ever about its graphics. Crysis remains one of my favorite modern first person shooters for a very important reason, and this week I went back through it (or at least the good parts) one more time, trying the highest difficulty setting for the first time. Continue reading

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20 Years Of GoldenEye and FPS Mission Design

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The 20th anniversary of GoldenEye 007 for the N64 completely passed me by last month. This week is the 20th anniversary of the North American release of Final Fantasy VII but I’ve still never actually played that game beyond the first few hours, so I’m just gonna finally write about GoldenEye.

I imagine everyone else who wrote about GoldenEye a couple weeks ago went on about how everyone around them played it in 1997, how it was the first major console first person shooter, and how its competitive multiplayer was a main pillar of gaming at the time. All that is true, but I also like pointing out how influential GoldenEye’s story campaign may have been for certain kinds of first person action 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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The Gamecube Turns 15

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The Gamecube turns 15 in Japan this week and will turn 15 in North America in November. I don’t think I’ve ever gone in-depth about my experiences with the system: why I bought it, what it was like owning one as my only console during that time, and how that formed my opinion on why it couldn’t wrest any market share back from Sony (and in fact lost some to Microsoft).

In the years prior to the Gamecube’s release I only owned an N64 during its life cycle. I spent a lot of time looking from the outside in at all the neat third party games that made the original PlayStation as appealing as it was. People back then (and today) complained about Nintendo not making enough “mature” games, but the real problem was always a lack of support from the third party developers who would make those kinds of games for a more varied library. It’s why N64 owners ate up C-tier stuff like Quest 64 — there were basically no other RPGs on the system. I followed up the N64 years with a brief but unforgettable time with the Dreamcast. When it became clear the Dreamcast was on its way out in 2001, it was time to decide what would be the one console I would be able to afford that generation. Continue reading

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Late To The Party: Quake

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This one is quite late for Quake’s 20th anniversary, but some things happened, and here we are. I tried to pitch a “first-time Quake player” anniversary article and couldn’t really sell an angle on it, so I guess I’m just gonna put down some of my general thoughts on the game here.

I’ve been trying to do my classic first-person-shooter odyssey more or less in release order to get a good sense of the technological progress that occurred. I had to skip a few planned games (to which I plan to return) when the Quake anniversary came up. Nonetheless I was still interested in seeing why this game seemed to be revered as one of the top FPSs ever made. Continue reading

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