Remasters have seen a resurgence in recent years, with gamers crying out to see their nostalgic favs given a modern makeover. The Bluepoint Games remaster of Shadow of the Colossus is just one of many examples of making one of the best games ever made, better with the benefit of more powerful hardware. With the next-generation consoles fast approaching, let’s look at the past, to find possible future remasters or reboots. Here are five next-generation remasters we need to see.
Starting with one of Activision’s most underused IPs, we have the western action-adventure game, Gun. Between the release of Red Dead Revolver and its spiritual successor, the wild west genre was widely ignored, apart from Call of Juarez and Gun. Set soon after the civil war, you play a hunter named Colt, who’s father was killed in a massacre on board a riverboat. Barley making it out alive, he must hunt down the strange preacher that fled the boat, along with the savage ex-confederate soldiers who attack the steamboat. Thrown into the harsh frontier where everyone is a criminal, Colt will learn far more about himself than he expected to.
Heavily influenced by the spaghetti westerns of Sergio Leone, this was a game that didn’t mind appearing gimmicky. Cowboys and Native American, north vs south; these are well-worn tropes, but they’re worn for a reason. It’s doubtful a complete remake is in the cards, but a remaster isn’t beyond the realm of comprehension.
If you’re under the age of twenty and never owned a PS1, I doubt you’ve heard of Klonoa. A cult classic platformer from Namco (before the Bandi) Klonoa told the tale of an anthropomorphic furry animal journeying to an airship that has crashed into a nearby mountain. Learning that a demonic spirit inhabits the mountain, Klonoa ventures out to destroy the spirit before it can turn the world into a nightmare. I have a special connection to Klonoa because it was the first game I ever played and cemented my life-long love of platforming games.
I have a sneaking suspicion that we’re going to see a platforming renascence in the next-generation. Though unconfirmed, the PS5 may have extensive backwards compatibility. If true, this means a possible return for hordes of forgetting games from generations past. A remaster for next-generation consoles may never to arrive, but at least I can hold out hope of a more arcane version through backward compatibility.
3. Sly Cooper
The Sly Cooper franchise has faired better than most. For one, all three original games are available on PS Now. A fourth instalment released on PS3 but met with mixed reviews. The Sucker Punch franchise has remained quiet ever since, choosing to focus on the Infamous trilogy and the upcoming Ghosts of Tsushima. But, it is the eternal burden of a developer to look towards future projects, and that goes doubly for first-party studios like Sucker Punch.
A return to the Sly Copper universe would not only thrill franchise fans like myself but would introduce a new generation to classic platforming. The original games followed the pattern of completing several mini-missions until you had the relevant data to complete the final boss. This gameplay structure still works as well as it did almost twenty years ago. Even if it’s just for nostalgia’s sake, a next-generation console remaster would be awesome.
The original trilogy is available on PlayStation Now.
2. The Simpsons: Hit & Run
I’ve spoken at some length about my nostalgia for The Simpsons: Hit and Run. Yet, despite a fervent cult following, an attempt at remaking this classic has never occurred. Every so often a supposed leak or rumour will surface but they never lead anywhere. Released in 2003, The Simpsons: Hit and Run gave us the most fully-formed version of Springfield we’ve ever seen. Combining the gameplay of Crazy Taxi, with a Grand Theft Auto mission structure, proved to be a winning formula.
I can only assume that the release of Simpsons: Tapped Out, a mobile freemium game that raked in millions for EA put an end to any hope of a remake. Members of the original development team have shared their willingness to return to the IP, fanning the flames of speculation that we may see The Simpsons: Hit and Run again, in some form. Improvements, like removing loading screens, creating a truly open-world Springfield and improving the character models would highting the enjoyment of what’s already the best Simpson game ever made.
1. EA Fight Night
I have a general dislike for sports games. These games have become vehicles for making vast amounts of money for their publishers. Rarely do they make much of an effort to renovate the genre in any meaningful way. There was one exception, however – EA’s Fight Night. But, as Fifa and Madden became big money makers, the franchise was abandoned. Being able to fulfil my fantasy of becoming heavyweight champion was something only Fight Night could provide.
If rumours are true, a rebirth of the franchise might be on its way. Lennox Lewis tweeted that he had heard EA Sports was considering a return of Fight Night on next-generation consoles. If a legend in the sport hears mumblings of a potential rebirth, then that matters.