The new Shadow of the Colossus is garnering a lot of headlines lately after Sony released some long form gameplay videos which really do demonstrate how much has improved since the original 2005 game. This marks the third version of SotC after the HD update in 2011 on the PS3 which is starting to get excessive for remade titles (but SotC is one of those rare games that deserves the upgrade treatment).
As much as we like Shadow of the Colossus (and the entire franchise from Ice to the underrated The Last Guardian [our game of the year for 2016]), there have to be other games that could benefit from the same treatment. This got us thinking though about other games we’d love to see resurface after a much needed facelift. Here now are 10 Games the SHOULD be Remastered.
The game that became Counter Strike which eventually built Valve, Steam, and the entire computer gaming ecosystem. And that’s for good reason because Half-Life and it’s sequel are THAT good. A Half-Life remake has actually been in the works for nearly a decade (fans of Valve are used to prolonged delays…), but so far it only covers about half of the game. The conclusion of Half-Life, where protaganist Gordon Freeman ventured into the alien world and battle monstrous telepathic alien babies, is ripe for a remaster. Maybe one day we’ll finally get to see what the heck was happening in Xen.
9. Toe Jam and Earl
The original Toe Jam and Earl, released in 1991 (yeah, the game is almost 30 years old), was one of the few great couch coop games of our youth. You and a buddy play as the titular lead aliens after crash landing on Earth searching for parts to rebuild your ship to leave. It’s casual, it’s trippy, and it’s got a great soundtrack. Fortunately we may get our fill for an update as Adult Swim Games is targeting a new entry into the franchise this year that looks to tap into the original game’s roots (and not the unfortunate sequel that is better left forgotten).
8. Star Tropics
StarTropics for the NES was one of the best escapist games we played growing up. You play as Mike traveling to find your uncle on an island in the South Seas. When you follow the breadcrumb trail that leads you to your personal sub replete with its own NES R.O.B. pilot, the game starts to take off. The final section goes crazy with plots of alien invasions and ancient civilizations, but the first 10 hours or so are just fun. We’d love to see an update of this game to show off the sights of C-islands. Heck, like Half-Life, maybe some updated graphics would make the alien boss not so ridiculous too.
7. Dark Forces
Here’s a pro-tip for you. If you wanted to know how the Death Star plans were stolen to start A New Hope, skip Rogue One and go play 1995’s Star Wars: Dark Forces. The game hit all the right notes. You fight Boba Fett, get captured by Jabba the Hutt, battle the empire with John Williams’ classic songs going full tilt, corny FMV cutscenes, Wilhelm screams, etc. This game was great. We’d love another run as Kyle Katarin and to cleanse the palate after last year’s lackluster Rogue One.
6. Out of this World / Another World
Seriously, how is this not a thing already? Designer Eric Chahi used some impressive framing of some rudimentary graphics to present a compelling and wholly original feeling game. The game seemed light years ahead of it’s time despite it’s limited polygon count. Yeah, gameplay is stiff and confusing, but we’d love to see an updated version of this game to really enjoy the story of the unlikely hero, Lester, who leads a slave alien uprising on a foreign planet after a failed science experiment. Gordon Freeman and this guy need to share a beer sometime.
5. Sam and Max Hit the Road
The humor, the puzzles, freaking Max. This was LucasArts at its prime. The story picks up with the two freelance detectives on a case from the commissioner to track down the local carnival’s missing bigfoot. This leads to ridiculous tourist attractions across the US, an animal-abusing country western singer, and a magical recipe to resurface the earth. It’s quirky and hilarious today as it was in 93. A remake would welcome, especially since other LucasArts titles are getting update treatment.
4. Stubbs the Zombie in Rebel Without a Pulse
This is likely one of the best games you never played. Developed by Bungie co-founder Alex Seropian and using the Halo engine, Stubbs is the game that finally lets you play as the zombie trying to retaliate at the humans that wronged you. With some creative gameplay mechanics like creating swarms of allies from the humans you devour to the tongue in cheek tone throughout, Stubbs is a very unique with very little wrong with it except most people didn’t play it. An update would be a great option to give gamers a second chance to finally play this game.
3. The Goonies 2
Good games based on movies is a short list that basically starts and ends with Rare’s Goldeneye. The one potential addition we’d add to that list was the NES’s classic albeit bizarre Goonies 2. The game, billed as a sequel, didn’t follow the plot of the movie but lifted so much of it really didn’t need to be a sequel. Mikey, armed with his yoyo, is once again sneaking into the Fratelli’s hideout and the labrythian underground beneath to find his missing goonies. Gameplay was great and the 8-bit rendition of Cyndi Lauper’s “Good Enough” was remarkably awesome even after you hear it dozens of times. Give me an update of this game!
2. Link’s Awakening
We apparently are in the gaming minority that felt underwhelmed by the latest Zelda, Breath of Wild. Sure, the free form physics engine makes for some unpredictable and often hilarious effects but combat with brittle weapons that break all too frequently and a remarkably void of dungeons instead replaced by wildly too many, repetitive mini dungeons made this just unpleasant to play. Instead, we’d love to see Nintendo bring back a Zelda most didn’t check out, Gameboy’s Link’s Awakening. After a shipwreck, Link washes up on the Koholint island and is quickly tasked to retrieve eight instruments from, yes, eight dungeons to awaken the local magical beast to get back to Hyrule. The game was developed by Nintendo developers after-hours as a hobby which allowed for some unrestrained development including references to other Nintendo games and characters that break the 4th wall to talk to the gamer on occasion. This one is ripe for a graphical update.
1. Deux Ex
Arriving in 2000, Warren Spector’s classic Deus Ex was unparalleled at the time and launched a franchise still relevant today (if a bit tired). You play as UNATCO agent JC Denton in a futuristic New York where cybernetic enhancements are commonplace and society is spiraling out of control due to poverty and disease. Gamers are given a fairly long leash on how to play this game both in RPG mechanisms and combat. There are even substantive story changes that can occur based on your actions. Most importantly, the game doesn’t hold your hand letting you figure out your playthrough style and making your experience feel unique. Of all of the titles we’d love to see in modern graphics, Deus Ex takes the top spot.
What other titles should make a comeback? Let us know in the comments below.