Remastering – what would you like to see next?

Remastering – what would you like to see next?

Remastering games has become a bit of a hot trend as of late, as publishers sitting on a lot of old IPs have realised that they can make a fairly good amount of money from simply updating the visuals and making sure the games work on a modern system.

It's not even much of a cash grab, as while the publishers and developers make some money off of old hat, a lot of the time fans are happy with the idea. As operating systems change and hardware standards are updated, a lot of those older games don't work correctly and they do start to look less charming than they once did. So if a version of your favourite game is re-released with updated visuals and better support for things like multiplayer and high resolutions, what's the problem?

Of course if a remastering is done poorly, people aren't so pleased and indeed, bringing back some of these classic games to large audiences can highlight some of the problems with them. Take the recent Grim Fandango HD update for example. While Double Fine did a good job with it and made it much more functional than the buggy patched version was, it did highlight how some of the mechanics of the point and click genre, the fixed camera scenes and the sheer bizarre nature of some of the puzzles, don't really hold up in a modern gaming industry.

That said, the Homeworld Remastered Collection has done very well indeed, with almost unanimous praise for the attention to detail that the developers put into it. Especially since it unified Homeworld one and two in terms of multiplayer support, creating a more cohesive community than the game had before.

It will be interesting to see if other games that aren't quite so old have such a warm reception though. The upcoming Ultimate Gears of War remastering looks pretty, but wasn't exactly a game known for its story. Similarly so, while the mechanics it brought to the table – lockable cover system, gritty brown and grey visuals – were exciting and fresh at the time, today they are very played out, so may not be so well received a second time around.

The game will need to be as bug free as possible too, as the Halo: Master Chief Collection really shot itself in the foot. Despite its grandiose plan to bring together players of all Halo games into one place, the number of bugs and problems with matchmaking made it an experience that few enjoyed until well after launch day.

It will also need to not be lazy. While there are remasterings like the aforementioned Homeworld, which have redubbed audio, recreated cutscenes, remade textures and art assets – it's a huge undertaking – we have seen some, like earlier recreations of things like God of War, which just replace the textures with ones at a higher resolution. That just makes things crisper rather than "HD."

Perhaps the biggest potential for praise or aggression from gamers, is the recently announced Final Fantasy VII remake. The fact that gamers have clamoured for this since the earliest days of the PS3 – when Square unfairly teased an HD recreation of the most popular game in the series' history – puts a lot of pressure on the developers. But considering how pretty Final Fantasy games usually are, few are concerned that Square won't be able to make something that looks good.

Where the worry comes in, is that the developers are talking about tweaking certain aspects of the game; and not in a small way either. Tetsuya Nomura, the original character designer from FFVII and the person in-charge of the remake, said that he doesn't think the turn based combat system works in today's gaming world. That has concerned a lot of people, as few are fans of the recent FF XIII combat system and in-fact, many turn based RPGs still exist and perform well today.

In his defence, there are elements of the game that do need changing. The script could do with some work or at the very least given a much better translation. Hopefully they make use of the one that a fan recently released after five years of work.

Of course everyone still wants to see Cloud cross dressing in HD. That's a must. But what would you guys like to see in the Final Fantasy VII remastering?

Taking things a step further though, what games would you like to see remade for the modern age? If I could have just one game updated, it would be Micro Machines; preferably the Tournament Edition from 1996. I still play that game to this day, but if they updated the visuals and added some online multiplayer functionality, I'd be sold.