No Right Answer: Are Remastered Video Games Stupid?

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I grew up on the original Resident Evil and RE2. I consider them the best of the series-- but its the pacing and control scheme that I LIKE about them. I've not played 5 or 6

Are Remastered Video Games Stupid?

As the prophetic Jim Sterling foretold, Resident Evil is being remade...again. Is this a stupid, unimaginative move, or a way to introduce new audiences to great games?

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Sorry, but ya'll are completely wrong. I can semi-understand your points, but you don't take into account what other's may think.

Example 1: Last of Us Remastered. This was perfect for me b/c I traded in my PS3 before it was released and it meant I got to play it.

Example 2: Halo. All of my friends are excited about this to relieve classic games they played in high school and college. Halo 1 and 2 are over 10 years old and were classic XBox games. Also, a lot of people DON'T HAVE their 360s because we traded them in to help pay for the Xbox One/PS4 or games.

Also, this bullcrap about "cash grabs".... Let's break this down

Honestly Good Value
Last of Us Remastered came out for $10 less than standard with all the DLC which is about another $10-15 in value.
Halo MCE is $60, but will include 4 games and all their DLC with a lot of work to remaster them for 1080p/60fps AND extra content, and done by people who love the franchise ALL WHILE WORKING on Halo 5

New Consoles
The argument about the 3DS remakes of Star Fox and Ocarina are a good example of bringing an older game to a new generation without digging out or buying old consoles.

People have to buy them in order for the developers to grab any cash... if the people don't want them, than they won't buy them
Zelda 3DS 3.36 million worldwide
Star Fox 3DS 810,000 worldwide
Last of US Remasterd 1.5 MILLION IN 24 HOURS

It seems like people like remakes for many reasons, and while there are examples of crappy ones (GoldenEye), the Halo Master Chief Edition is a good buy for those that want to relive some of their memories, or the Last of Us who didn't get to play it or loved it so much, they want to play it again.

The problem with many Remasters is that they only improve upon the presentation. Granted, graphics are somewhat important in games, but there is more to a good videogame. A remaster that only improves the presentation is like re-releasing a book, but instead of using cheap,super-thin, slightly brownish paper you use thicker, slightly whiter paper instead of ironing out plot-holes and grammatical errors.

If Remasters would actually improve gameplay, improve map-layouts, make the AI smarter, tweak the in-game economy, offer more unlockables and such things, people would be much more open to the idea I think.

The Resident Evil remake for instance is going to incorporate a new relative control scheme. I personally won't be using it, but I know many people can't stand the absolute one from the older games. So that is an improvement which makes the remake seem not as lazy as other Remasters.

I haven't played it but does The Last of Us on PS4 actually improve upon the PS3 version? Other than the presentation I mean? Is the AI smarter? Is the item-management better? Is it an overall better experience or just a better looking experience?

The problem with changing the gameplay is that you will earn the ire of some of the fans that hope it controls the same way. The Halo team actually put a glitch BACK IN to the game b/c it was such an iconic part of the Halo 2 Multiplayer experience. (like the combo system in Street Fighter was a left in glitch that make it a world wide best seller).

I never played Resident Evil so I can't speak on it. I think that would be an interesting genre called "re-imagining" where you take the premise, but change it up.

Last of Us wasn't changed much (I saw my friend play some it on the PS3, I didn't play it til the PS4), but the AI seems similar. I do think its cool that it was $10 under standard and had all the DLC :)

Remakes would be 100% unnecessary for any games of the Gamecube, PS1, Xbox generation or later if you offered full backwards compatibility in all systems to go back that far. Re-releasing or remaster old cartridge based games, I fully understand because the technology has evolved to a point to where we simply can't play the Super Mario Bros cartridge on a WiiU, but for a very small price, we can just buy an downloadable version of that same game.

I'm against the remake, remaster, re-released unless it is to bring back something that can't be played, or to improve on something that actually benefits from the improvements. And as for stuff like the Last of Us or Tomb Raider Definitive Edition, they wouldn't be needed if the current gen consoles were backwards compatible. But MS and Sony want more money and won't offer those options to those of us willing to pay for those options (because there are plenty out there that want said options). So this is just something we're stuck with until people actually do something interesting in this generation of games. :(

The Backward Compatibility argument has always had a special place in my heart. It's the perfect example of gamer entitlement and lack of understanding how development/pricing, and the real world in general work.

You can't just say "I want this system to play these games". There are different software, different system and processing architecture, and a lot of work that goes into designing the system for compatibility.

As far as "offer these options to those willing to pay" also isn't something they can really do. When consoles are first released, the only difference in the SKUS are accessories (Kinect), hard drive space, and game bundled in (download code or physical copy), the system itself is the exact same. If you recall, there were shortages of both the PS4 and Xbox One on release, meaning they couldn't produce enough units (at that time only one SKU per console) to meet demand. Think if they designed a more expensive/labor intensive backward compatible model (that would probably be $100 more)? Could they guarantee that people would actually pay MORE for something they may already hooked up their TVs to take the risks?

I traded in all my old systems for the new ones, mainly because I wanted something new and fresh and didn't want to keep up the old ones for 2 or 3 games. I see the Master Chief collection with its improved visuals, all the maps, and the ability to play online with my friends, and I'm very happy they put the work into it, instead of playing a the older versions that couldn't be supported online (Halo 2) or would be glitchy in a backward compatibility emulator.

As far as Last of Us and Tomb Raider being upgraded, I don't see that as a bad thing either. I didn't play them on last gen and bought them for my current gen consoles and loved both of them. If you still have/played them on your last gen systems, you aren't required to buy the new version, its an option for people like me who missed them, or people that wanted them upgraded for their shiny new consoles.

But I think my biggest issue (and I'm not attacking you personally) is the entitlement I see from many gamers... that they are OWED backward compatibility for some reason. Only 5 consoles (PS2, Xbox 360, PS3, Wii and Wii U) have offered them out of 8 console generations, so it's not an industry standard. The PS3 suffered on it's release due to it having the PS2 hardware inside, bumping up the cost. Many games didn't work or were glitchy. I hope your experience was good, but I had lost saves, lag, slowdowns ect when I tried to use the Xbox 360 to play Halo 1 or games made about that time.

Honestly, if you want to play old games, keep or purchase the system it was made to be played on or be glad that some of these are being remade for new audiences.

Depends entirely on context.

Some games have not aged well in one way or another and can benefit from a new coat of paint or some mechanical tweaks, others still hold up and remaking them would just be redundant.

I would argue that some remakes don't go far enough, leaving glaring issues untouched as sacred cows, while others miss the point and change things that should have been left well enough alone.

I think it´s important to rerelease as many games as possible on all platforms, but i´m not too fond of remasters. For the most part they just crank up the resolution without changing the textures, meaning that everything looks a bit rubbish. I´d rather they just threw the originals on the disc and left it at that, else i might as well hunt down the superior original version.

The important thing to note is that i don´t believe that games age, they either had shit art direction or they had good art direction. If they had shit art direction, they will look like shit, just like they did back then and if it´s good it will looks as good as it did back then. Nothing has changed, it´t the same bloody games :p, and i want to play the game i was intended to play when it was released. If they choose to "improve" it like with the Monkey Island games, then they better include an option to change to the original visuals.

Best question in ages.

I'd say that in all cases it's a cash grab. Selling any product is a cash grab, that's the point.

It's a cynical cash grab when it's something that should either be free with a subscription service, or better still, a backwards compatible console - Last of Us/GTA V being recent examples, but even those early Mario games.

HOWEVER, if the rerelease is a combination of games (I think being able to play through every Halo game in a single sitting/console sounds amazing, and I'm not even the biggest fan of the franchise), OR if it brings a significant improvement to a beloved game, then it's cool. GoldenEye is the best example - I loved that game, and dusted off my N64 to play it, and let's be honest; the controls suck. Everything else is great, but in a world of dual stick, I find it frustrating to return to single stick days. Making those kinds of gameplay changes, especially 10 years + after original release can be a good thing.

The principle of remastered games is not bad. I am really excited to see first pictures/videos of the Homeworld remastered games and I wish someone would remake the 2001 game Gothic in a modern engine, because the story and the world are so amazing but technology-wise it is really hard to stomach the original version.
Also, sometimes a remastered version woud be better than the sorry excuses the publishers and devs call sequel. A straight Sim City 4 remake with the necessary improvements and decent mod support would have been sooo much better than whatever this 2013 version was...
Of course, that does not exclude the posibility of bad, worthless remakes.

Most of the time, yes I agree with remastered games being pointless.
When they started remastering some of the "Tales of" series I was ecstatic, when FF10 was remastered I couldn't care less and didn't buy it. When Tomb Raider was redone for the next gen consoles, I played it when it came out like.. A year ago and felt it was silly to rebuy it again. The same has gone for The Last of Us, while admittedly a great game, had no extra content so why would I buy the new version when I just played it less than a year ago?

Also, Diablo 3 for PS4? I played it on PC, passed on my chance for the PS3 version, so I fail to see the point.

Most remasters are probably more cash-grabs than anything else, but that's not always a bad thing. These games are guaranteed to make money because they were good and popular enough to merit it. How many years have we been hearing the fanboys crying for a Final Fantasy 7 remaster? It's just good business to give your customers something they want to pay you for. Realistically, there are plenty of games I'd love to see remastered and would probably buy without hesitation if I did. Why? Because I loved those games back in the day and sometimes things do get so outdated that it's hard to play them anymore, even if it's just because the visuals are so bad, but more often it's because (to paraphrase Yhatzee) they handle like a cow in a supermarket trolley.

That said, when you're remastering a game that came out only a couple years ago or less, it's less forgivable. The Last of Us wasn't a remaster, it was just making the game available on the PS4 and hoping that saying "remaster" would get people to buy a second copy who otherwise wouldn't. Still, this really smells of the "if you don't want it, don't buy it" problem. So what if game companies are selling shameless cash-grab remakes? So are movie studios. If you feel that it's something you want to own, buy it. If you don't, don't. There are probably some people out there who just love the idea of the Halo remasters, and that's fine. I don't care and the X-Box One is still a steaming pile of bullsh*t, but, for those who want it, happy day.

I'll just continue to enjoy the fact that PC gaming means I live in a world of constant fan-modding that can keep games alive long after they should've run their course.

It really does depend on if the game benefits from the upgraded graphics, or increases its availability, and anything else, and its completely subjective, but usually if it's old enough that it's hard to find or run.

I'm still waiting on my Valis Megacollection, and the Shadowrun steam community to make a modrom for the Megadrive version of the game.

The game needs to have felt updated in some way. Take Final Fantasy X HD. I remember how slidey all of the characters' movements were and that was kept intact, but it made the game feel dated. Yes, graphics are a big deal, but you also need to update animations. Then you also have completely botched games like Silent Hill HD Remix which lost a lot of the atmosphere of the original.

Then there is the convenience factor that was mentioned. It needs to make the game simpler to play. The thing about Last of Us Remastered is that a lot of people played on 360 only and did not get a PS3. Sony a few months ago said that over 30% of PS4 owners did not have a PS3 and my guess is that this is based on new PSN accounts on PS4s. Can it be called a cash grab, sure but when there are a bunch of your user base quite vocal about a title you can't exactly get made when they make it. Sure you may not like it, but there were a lot of people who said, "I want to play this game, but I don't want a PS3." my PS3 was on the brink of death when Last of Us came out and for me the experience was unplayable. little did I know that the month after I picked up the game my PS3 died (it was a launch model, so I think it did pretty well). So I welcome the remastered version.

On top of that, backwards compatibility is kinda tricky. Sony's PS3 games were designed to work with the Cell processor which doesn't work the same way other multi core systems do. With typical multi-core systems everything takes a new chunk to process. With Cell, everything had to go through a manager core who was distributing the work among smaller cores and the only way the manager core would know what to do is if the designers told the manager core which smaller core to send a particular packet of work to. Because not a lot of devs cared to put that extra work into it, the PS3 was effectively a single core system just letting the manager core do everything.

Backwards compatibility is also costly because that is hardware. 360 had limited backwards compatibility which meant only first party Xbox games could work on 360 and even then, not all of them. PS3 had 99% backwards compatibility, but that pushed the price tag to $200 over the competitor. Who would buy a PS3 at $599 when the competitor who played games better and was the lead platform at $399? That is the cost of backwards compatibility. Sony saw sales numbers were not great, took out backwards compatibility, dropped the price to be competitive with the competition and saw sales take a positive turn. Sony saw people vote with their wallets. Sony heard "we don't want backwards compatibility, we want a less expensive console." That is what we got with PS4. I think PS3 was holding onto PS2 backwards compatibility for 2.5 years before they finally dropped it.

For me it's REALLY SIMPLE:
Go full on Black Mesa style REMAKE or don't bother, period. A REMAKE of this quality can even be sold as a FULL-PRICE title.

I think remakes are a great thing, usually. For one reason, which you guys seem to have glossed over in your video. Unlike you reviewer types, not every gamer has every console that has ever existed. For example, I chose to go with an XBOX 360 over a PS3 all those years ago. That means I got to play (for instance) the original Saints Row, but never got to play anything from Naughty Dog, a PS3 exclusive company.

In the next generation I will be purchasing a PS4 over an XBOX one. If ND decides to remake any of those old games (in addition to The Last of Us), it means I will get to go back and play all those games I originally missed out on. I'm excited they re-released The Last of Us on PS4. I will get to play it. If that hadn't happened, it would be a game I never got to experience (and they never got my money for).

And I think it would be great if Volition could remake the original SR and put it on the new consoles. The original game being confined to a single platform (XBOX 360) means it had a limited audience, and there are a lot of people out there that might enjoy that game if they had the opportunity to play it. Not to mention that even those of us with a 360 will eventually pack it away in the garage (or it will ultimately RROD) and that game will be lost to us. Bringing it to the new generation of consoles would give that game another 10 years of life.

Is that a cash grab? You can call it that if you like, but for me it's a way to get the game out to a wider audience, some of which didn't have the opportunity to play that game before.

The problem with many Remasters is that they only improve upon the presentation. Granted, graphics are somewhat important in games, but there is more to a good videogame. A remaster that only improves the presentation is like re-releasing a book, but instead of using cheap,super-thin, slightly brownish paper you use thicker, slightly whiter paper instead of ironing out plot-holes and grammatical errors.

If Remasters would actually improve gameplay, improve map-layouts, make the AI smarter, tweak the in-game economy, offer more unlockables and such things, people would be much more open to the idea I think.

What you are describing is akin to the Star Wars "enhancements" George Lucas made. Sometimes a classic is a classic for a reason. :P

Kidding aside, sequels are for iteration while remasters and HD Collections are meant to appease fans who want to revisit old favorites. Or perhaps introduce the classics to a new generation of players. If you mangle it, what is the audience for that? Even if you improve it, it's only going to appeal to someone wanting the old game again anyway except you'll have ruined their intended experience in the name of "improvements".

Mods, Sequels, Expansions; all of those things are for improving on what is already there. But remasters and collections aren't selling to that same crowd.

My go-to example for a remaster done well will be Halo: Anniversary for a good long while. They preserved the distinct Halo feel of the original game's campaign perfectly while enhancing the experience through improved rendering techniques. They even made the Library infinitely more playable by adding small visual cues to help players who didn't know that all you had to do was listen to Spark and follow him so they'd get lost. They improved the experience, while preserving it fully intact at the same time. And only the visuals were touched, otherwise it's the same engine the same models with new coats of paint hanging on them. Perfect for replaying a beloved classic. They even added in some of the terminals for fans willing to do the work to find them without calling attention to them or taking anything away from the original game. Small easter eggs for Halo 4 which came the year after.

Of course, the Resident Evil Remake did make some significant changes while adding a new coat of paint too. And it was pretty great, building on what was there and making it new at the same time. So there's precedent for both ways to work I suppose. But that's still a separate thing. They called it a remake. I don't think it would fall under the same heading as a remaster or an HD collection.

No, they're not. More people get to check out games they didn't have the chance too.
It's like Ocarina of time on the 3DS, or other updates from systems like the 64. Now we don't have to track down all sorts of BS just to play older good games.

P.S. No, I don't care about emulators before you tell me that.

I used to agree completely with the notion that remastered games were a waste of time and a cash grab at best.

Then a year ago I decided to replay StarCraft.

After struggling through at 680 480 on a 22 inch monitor, hours of watching pixel soup crawling across a terrain that looked as if Picasso vomited his cubism phase over the screen, I was almost crying out for something to give me back my precious eye candy.
At that point, right then, blizzard could have stung me for anything from thirty dollars to sixty for a prettified version of the game.

So now, I'm a little more sanguine about the idea of remastered versions of games and quietly looking forward to the the arrival of the homeworld hd remasters in the near future.

The gameplay can stay the same, or if the developers in question like they can alter it a little (leaving the option to keep it as normal for the hardcore nostalgics).
Adding that eyecandy back makes the nostalgia all the sweeter to enjoy.

I have never owned an Xbox anything. I have played Halo with friends though and I loved it. The Halo remastering collection thing on Xbox One is seriously tempting me to get the system.

Personally, I missed out on the first release of Ico for PS2. I was excited to see it come back as a rerelease, as that meant I could finally play it.

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