E3 2011: HD Remakes

I am a bitter, jealous man. While Greg and Jeff are enjoying the sights and sounds of E3, the gaming super show in Los Angeles, I remain stuck in the cold and gloomy Midwest. When not shaking my fist at the heavens cursing my fate (damn you gainful employment!), I have scoured the internet for news from the show and figured I would relay some of the happenings to you along with my thoughts.

While Nintendo seems to have adopted the mantra “…if it ain’t broke, put another screen in it…” a number of other companies have decided to borrow Hollywood’s idea that if something was good 10-20 years ago, it will be even better now after a significant remake/reboot. While in some cases this can lead to some head scratchers (huh?), for the most part the game industry’s foray into remaking looks to be much more agreeable.  Instead of ruining the collective childhoods of thousands of people by slapping the name of a classic on something that only vaguely resembles the original, it seems the trend at this year’s E3 is to take great games from the console generations of yore and give the graphics an HD makeover. Same sounds, same controls, same everything, except now the graphics look all purdy on your expensive big screen.

I love this HD remake trend. Too me, graphics, like milk, do not get better with age. As great as some of these older titles may have been back in the day, they just do not look good compared to the games released today. But now I can finally play classic games like Ico, Shadow of the Colossus, and the original games of the Metal Gear Solid, Silent Hill, and Zone of the Enders series with satisfyingly modern visuals. I picked up the first two HD remakes of the God of War series this February and they looked and played fantastic. And due to the success of these, Sony promised us that the two PSP God of War games would undergo a similar process and end up on the PS3. I look forward to getting my hands on the new and improved Halo: Combat Evolved coming out this November, which even has a button that switches between the original graphics and the new ones, just so you can see how far things have come in the 10 years since its original release.

I hope these are just the first of many HD remakes for the games industry. There is certainly a demand for them *cough* Final Fantasy VII *cough*, and as long as they stay true to the original and only spruce up the visuals, I think it is a great thing.

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