• Hey, guest user. Hope you're enjoying NeoGAF! Have you considered registering for an account? Come join us and add your take to the daily discourse.

Remakes and Remasters: When is it too soon to make a remake? How faithful should they be?

When rumors first came out that The Last of Us was being remade there was a lot of discussion on whether that made sense, especially because it was released as a PS4 remaster already.

I think these discussions should lead us to discuss when it is appropriate to remake a game. In the case of The Last of Us, I think the original PS3 game was quite dated, looked marvelous however on the PS4 in the remaster, the game is still dated. Here Naughty Dog has an opportunity to probably remake the game with assets from The Last of Us 2. The odd thing here is that most of us won't be surprised if the Last of Us Remake is cross-gen, meaning that the remake and remaster would be on the same console. I think that is where things get sticky with cross-gen in general, but that's a topic for another thread.

Let's look at some successful remakes (either critically or financially):

Demon's Souls - The original game came out in 2009 and the remake came out in 2020. So just over a decade later and was a "faithful remake"

Halo: Combat Evolved - The original game came out in 2001 The Anniversary remake came out in 2011 and was a "faithful remake"

Resident Evil 2 - The original game came out in 1998 and the RE2 Remake came out in 2019. Over two decades later, this was not a "faithful remake"

Final Fantasy 7 - The original game came out in 1997 and the FF7 Remake came out in 2020. Again over two decades later, and not a faithful remake by any means.

So it looks like at least with the examples that I've given so far that 10 years allows for a similar type of game to be made whereas with 20 years some might feel like a game needs to be completely revamped. If God of War (2005) was remade, they'd probably use the Ragnarok engine rather than just give it a visual makeover at this point.

Let's bring it back to The Last of Us. The game was originally released in 2013. Coming out in Q3 or Q4 2022, puts it at almost a decade after the original game came out. It also allows for a unified experience along with LOU2 and perhaps on both PS4 and PS5. I think that the remasters existence on the same console says less about LOU and more about how long the previous game generation has lasted (and in my opinion outlasted). If you compare Resident Evil 1 and 2 (original releases), they have very comparable Metacritic scores from both critics and users. If you look at the Metacritic scores for the PS4 RE HD remaster and RE2 Remake you'll notice significantly higher scores for the remake. What becomes more interesting is that the GameCube (original remake) scores are in line with the scores from Resident Evil 2 remake on PS4. Personally, I got roasted by some purist fans of Resident Evil for not wanting to play any games with tank controls, maybe rightfully so, but I know I'm not alone in that feeling.

I think as time goes on, people's expectations shift dramatically.

As a general rule, I'd say this. Any game can be remastered from generation to generation and a remaster in many cases when done right feels better than just getting a next-gen patch or slight game enhancements (IMO). And as far as remakes the window for faithful 1:1 remakes start to diminish after 10 years. As much as I would have loved a more faithful remake of FF7, maybe the market wouldn't have bore it and I should have just played the port on PS4 or PC. I think that is where a faithful remaster ahead of a remake can and should make purist fans happy. Had FF7 received a remaster on PS2 looking and playing as good as FFX, I would have been happy with it, maybe throw it on PS3 and add some voice acting and even better, and hell even that probably would have received its own HD remaster at a later date, and I'd be even happier.

What do you think?
 
Case by case scenario as different devs do different things with remakes and remasters

If no changes or minimal changes, its generally a remaster

If updating major elements of the game design, its generally a remake

If not majorly accurate to the original, its generally a reimagining
 
Case by case scenario as different devs do different things with remakes and remasters

If no changes or minimal changes, its generally a remaster

If updating major elements of the game design, its generally a remake

If not majorly accurate to the original, its generally a reimagining
I think these are the levels we currently see

#1 Backwards Compatability
#2 Next-Gen Patch
#3 Next-Gen Rerelease
#4 Remaster
#5 Remake

I think it is a case by case. Some games just don't age as well as others. PS2 generation we were getting voice acting and more fully rendered 3d models for the first time. Compare Solid Snake on PS2 vs PS1 for ex. But we also had games like God of War help pioneer quick time events because the limitations of doing things in game. Remaking a game like God of War with quick-time elements doesn't make sense. You have to take them out. PS3 is when we first started to see HD gaming and that too hasn't aged and in some cases the gameplay as well.
 

ACESHIGH

Member
To me it's better to make all the original games on PC for preservation. a PC version should circumvent the restrictions of fixed spec hardware. Example original demons souls at 4k 60 FPS 16X AF and higher quality textures.

Games from sixth gen and onwards don't need any remake, just q PC port.
 

AV

We ain't outta here in ten minutes, we won't need no rocket to fly through space
No such thing as "too soon" and there's no "should" on the faithful part.

If a game is fantastic in concept and really sloppy in execution, remake it a year later, who cares.

If a game reinvents itself as well as RE2 did, or recreates itself as faithfully as SOTC did, then I'm fine with either.
 

Fbh

Member
Personally I think anything that's 2 gen or newer is fine with a remaster. Ps3 era games honestly still look pretty good at higher res and 60 (or more) fps. All you need to do is improve some textures here and there and maybe add some extra effects where possible and I'm fine.

I also think I'm in the minority but I tend to have little interest in 1:1 remakes. They are exciting for a couple of hours, then you get used to the graphics and it feels like you are just playing the same old game again. I don't like all the changes in FF7R, and it certainly feels streched thin, but I still really liked how it captured a lot of what I liked of the original while still feeling like a new and exciting game. Had it just been the 1:1 remake that a lot of people wanted, with the same areas, same level design, same combat, same dialog, etc it would have been exciting for a couple of hours, then it would have just been like replaying ff7....again.
Same with like Demon Souls remaster, if they had added new areas or bosses it might have been a system seller for me. As it it's now it's just a nicer looking version of the same game. Cool and all but not even comparable to how excited I am about Elden Ring.
 
Last edited:

kyussman

Member
The Last of us is too soon......but Sony know full well it's a no brainer money maker.....and that's what is behind the decision at the end of the day.Thing's like Resident Evil 2 are spot on in timing I think.
 

ToxicWeeb

Banned
1:1 remakes are a waste of time and they often butcher the artstyle and/or the controls.

"Reimagining" the game is better, but they often can't even surpass the original (see RE2 and FF7).

I think the best case scenario is when the game could really use modern improvements, a Persona 3 remake could be really good if done right I think.
 

GymWolf

Gold Member
I already said what i think about the next tlou remake...

But i would gladly pay max payne 1-2 remake or a psi-ops remake.

Also gimme an infamous collection where the framerate doesn't tank in the 10s...
 

Azurro

Member
Can you make a version of the game that is stunning?

Can you make a version of the game that is brave?

Can you make a version of the game that sticks it to the patriarchy?

Oh sorry, I was reading the Naughty Dog remake rulebook.
 

Drizzlehell

Member
I don't think time is as important as the end result (or maybe the intent). A true remake is something like Mafia Definitive Edition, which builds upon the original by retaining its best elements, and vastly improving the overall experience by providing dramatically better visuals, improved audio, and better gameplay. If it's just gonna be the same game but with slightly better graphics, then there's literally no point in doing it and it feels more like a cash grab.

So with that said, I don't think that the original TLoU is a game that even needs a remake. Visually it still looks pretty damn good, even better than many of the games released today. And I doubt they're gonna revolutionise the gameplay or introduce some wild changes to the campaign or the story, so overall - pointless.
 

SlimeGooGoo

Party Gooper
Remakes are just an excuse for corporations to produce cheaper games, because:

1. Game already has a following
2. Marketing costs are cheaper than say, for a new IP unknown to the public
3. Game is already done. Characters, art, music, story and game design. No need to do everything from scratch
4. Thanks to (3), development time is reduced. You can even hire a third party to work on it.
5. If the game kind fails, whatever. The costs weren't that high anyway (compared to developing a new IP)

Most publishers don't even care about the quality either, or if it's faithful or not.
That's why Demons Souls, Shadow of the Colossus, Spyro, MediEvil, GTA, FF7R remakes were so horrible. They just don't care, it's just an excuse to maximize profit.

I'm not against remakes, but they miss the point 99% of the time.
 

MiguelItUp

Member
Personally I feel like remasters are welcomed sooner than remakes for obvious reasons. Remasters typically just help provide better visuals and performance. So, it's usually safe to assume there there's a gen or two in between to make sense of the improvements. Which I feel makes the most sense there. I think Dark Souls and TLOU are great examples.

Remakes, to me, make the most sense between 2-3 gens or more. Also just kind of depends on how the original version looks compared to modern tech. Some people probably didn't think Demon's Souls was necessary, until they saw it in motion. Same with Resident Evil 2.

I'll admit, I'm a bit puzzled by TLOU apparently getting a remake as it's already received a remaster, it's not THAT old, and it aged well still IMO. But I guess we'll see, lol.
 
I think FFVIIR should be removed from that list, as it's clearly a re-writing of events and gives us new possibilities for where the story can go. It's the only title on there that specifically has the word "Remake" on the box, as in to remake something that had already happened, with potentially a different outcome than the original.

On RE2, I truly feel like Capcom left so much on the table with this title, especially RE3. Once they get around to doing RE4, I hope they leave nothing out. Once every 5-10 years is probably okay in my book, but we may see less and less of that as newer hardware/technologies completely change what's possible to implement in games these days, most of the original vision of older games was limited by the hardware at that time. So, assuming the new hardware/tech enables something that wasn't there before, I am all for getting a prettier/updated version of something.

The original(s) will always hold a special place in my heart, but, just for fun, I like to see modern remakes/spins. It doesn't delude my original experience any, so why not?
 

Edgelord79

Gold Member
In 100 years, it will just be either:

- remasters
- remakes
- remasters of remasters
- remasters of remakes
- remakes of remasters
- remakes of remakes
- remakes of special editions
- remasters of special editions
- remasters of director's cuts
- remasters of remakes of director's cuts

And yes, Skyrim will be released for the 47th time. Deal with it.
 

Airbus Jr

Litigate my emotions, daddy!
The last of us remake is way to soon

Shouldve spent money on older game like silent hill, legend of dragoon, chrono cross, mgs but feck that the new sony executives doesnt seem to remember those games
 

Termite

Member
For me, with remasters it's not about years, it needs to have been two full generations to justify updating the visuals. As diminishing returns come into play, that may even increase in the future.

Secondly, I'm less and less interested in replaying old games so the appeal of remasters is dimming to me. Also, remastering a PS4 game doesn't lead to the same level of improvements that remastering a PS2 or PS3 game did, so the experience is less transformational. As a result more recent remasters are even less appealing and will continue to be so. And the amount of them on the market is seriously off-putting.

Of course, any discussion about this kinda needs to get into the semantic debate over what a remaster/remake is which can be frustrating.

Enhanced port - Same game, same assets running at higher resolution / framerate and with DLC include (if any). A lot of people think this is a remaster because it can run / look a lot better but it isn't.
Remaster - Same gameplay/content with new assets / audio etc. If the gameplay and content is the exact same it doesn't matter if the whole engine was rebuilt from scratch, it's still a remaster. Examples: Demon's Souls PS5, Shadow of the Colossus PS4 etc
Remake - New gameplay / level designs / progression. Games like Metroid Zero Mission or Samus Returns, FFVII Remake or RE2 Remake.
 
Last edited:

cireza

Member
It is always too soon to make a remake. Remakes are pointless. Make some proper BC, and move on with the future.
 
The last of us remake is way to soon

Shouldve spent money on older game like silent hill, legend of dragoon, chrono cross, mgs but feck that the new sony executives doesnt seem to remember those games

Outside of Legend of Dragoon, Sony doesn't own any of those IP, and Legend of Dragoon has nothing to do with Naughty Dog...
 
It is always too soon to make a remake. Remakes are pointless. Make some proper BC, and move on with the future.
Is this because you're only seeing it from your perspective?

Let me give you an example. More people played God of War (2018) than any of the predecessors (by far). Remaking the original trilogy with a modern engine will give more people the opportunity to play those games than would have otherwise, even with BC. So is it pointless or not your cup of tea?

I didn't play the original Demon's Souls, but I just bought the remake just now and if I enjoy it I'd probably buy a remaster/port/remake of Bloodborne as well and other Souls games.
 

ZywyPL

Gold Member
I think the general rule should be:

Remake = pre-PS3 era
Remaster = PS3 and newer

Because games from PS2 and older gens have aged extremely poorly when it comes to gameplay mechanics, they need a complete overhaul, not just new, shiny coating. But games from the HD era play pretty much the same as what we get nowadays (one could even argue they were even better gameplay-wise), so a remaster would be more than enough. But by 'remaster' I mean something like CoD4, Demon Souls, Starcraft, C&C, Age of Empires etc., where it's the exact same game you remember but build from ground up on a new engine, for the new hardware, with new assets and so on, no that lazy-ass unlocking 4K and 60FPS and charging 40$ for it like many publishers do.
 

Danjin44

The nicest person on this forum
Personally I think anything that's 2 gen or newer is fine with a remaster. Ps3 era games honestly still look pretty good at higher res and 60 (or more) fps. All you need to do is improve some textures here and there and maybe add some extra effects where possible and I'm fine.

I also think I'm in the minority but I tend to have little interest in 1:1 remakes. They are exciting for a couple of hours, then you get used to the graphics and it feels like you are just playing the same old game again. I don't like all the changes in FF7R, and it certainly feels streched thin, but I still really liked how it captured a lot of what I liked of the original while still feeling like a new and exciting game. Had it just been the 1:1 remake that a lot of people wanted, with the same areas, same level design, same combat, same dialog, etc it would have been exciting for a couple of hours, then it would have just been like replaying ff7....again.
Same with like Demon Souls remaster, if they had added new areas or bosses it might have been a system seller for me. As it it's now it's just a nicer looking version of the same game. Cool and all but not even comparable to how excited I am about Elden Ring.
I agree with you, say what you want about FF7R but they took bold risk and to me it payed off. Now I’m excited what happens in part 2, if it was 1:1 remake then there is not much to look forward to because I already know the story and how it ends.

Even they completely screw up Part 2 I can respect they took risk which has been pretty rare in AAA games.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Fbh

cireza

Member
Is this because you're only seeing it from your perspective?
Yes, that's how I see video-games. I am only interested... by what interests me.
So is it pointless or not your cup of tea?
It is pointless. Make some decent BC and all games can become available. No wasted resources on remaking old stuff, focus on new games and experiences.

I didn't play the original Demon's Souls
Well I did, before a lot of people by the way as I imported the Asian version at release, and I will never buy the remake. It adds nothing, only takes away. And this applies to pretty much all remakes in my opinion.
 

Fbh

Member
I agree with you, say what you want about FF7R but they took bold risk and to me it payed off. Now I’m excited what happens in part 2, if it was 1:1 remake then there is not much to look forward to because I already know the story and how it ends.

Even they completely screw up Part 2 I can respect they took risk which has been pretty rare in AAA games.

Exactly, there's also more to look forward to because they are new games.
I'm looking forward to how the upcoming bosses will be like, how the remaining characters will play like, how the remaining summons will be like, how certain events will play out, what improvements and changes they make to combat and the overall design, etc.

If it was just a 1:1 remake I'd know exactly how everything will play out and play like.....I'd just look nicer.

And worst case scenario even if it's absolutely horrible, the original is still there, perfectly playable and available on basically every modern gaming platform.
 
Mass Effect, FF7, RE2/3, all good examples of how it should be done. ME for example is relatively modern, so a remaster was perfect. An entirely console generation removed from the last game released in the trilogy, introduced many new gamers in a package a modern gamer could enjoy. Resident Evil and FF7, those are 20+ year old games. A complete remake was in order and they did a good job.
 

SlimeGooGoo

Party Gooper
I agree with you, say what you want about FF7R but they took bold risk and to me it payed off
 
Top Bottom