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The Pandora Directive 25th Anniversary: One of the all time great adventure games is getting a remaster/remake

SF Kosmo

...please disperse...
Jul 7, 2020
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7 years after the release of the last Tex Murphy title, The Tesla Effect, Big Finish has made a new update, something of a good news/bad news.

The bad news is that they have cancelled the Poisoned Pawn, a fan-developed project that began as a remake of Overseer but had evolved into a new made in collaboration with BFG. Apparently the two teams were not working well together and had different visions for the project.

The good news is that they are developing an all new HD remaster of The Pandora Directive, the fourth title in the series, often regarded as one of the best adventure games of all time (it was #9 on Adventure Gamers top 100).

It's somewhere between a full remake and a remaster. Video of actors is being scanned from original archival tapes and remastered in HD, but CG backgrounds and compositing will be redone. Sound and music are being remastered from higher quality archival assets as well. Game levels are being remade based on original source assets used for pre-rendered cutscenes. Gameplay will be faithful but might have a few rough edges sanded down, and a modern interface.

Although I do think the "soft reboot" third game, Under a Killing Moon, is probably a better entry point for new players, it seems like the archival material for PD gives them a lot more to work with.

I'm excited, this is one of the few games from the mid-90s FMV era that really holds up. Hopefully it can introduce some new players to the series as well.



 

tsumake

Member
Dec 3, 2019
1,010
940
460
7 years after the release of the last Tex Murphy title, The Tesla Effect, Big Finish has made a new update, something of a good news/bad news.

The bad news is that they have cancelled the Poisoned Pawn, a fan-developed project that began as a remake of Overseer but had evolved into a new made in collaboration with BFG. Apparently the two teams were not working well together and had different visions for the project.

The good news is that they are developing an all new HD remaster of The Pandora Directive, the fourth title in the series, often regarded as one of the best adventure games of all time (it was #9 on Adventure Gamers top 100).

It's somewhere between a full remake and a remaster. Video of actors is being scanned from original archival tapes and remastered in HD, but CG backgrounds and compositing will be redone. Sound and music are being remastered from higher quality archival assets as well. Game levels are being remade based on original source assets used for pre-rendered cutscenes. Gameplay will be faithful but might have a few rough edges sanded down, and a modern interface.

Although I do think the "soft reboot" third game, Under a Killing Moon, is probably a better entry point for new players, it seems like the archival material for PD gives them a lot more to work with.

I'm excited, this is one of the few games from the mid-90s FMV era that really holds up. Hopefully it can introduce some new players to the series as well.




Good. You can’t replace Kevin McCarthy.
 

protonion

Member
Jul 20, 2009
2,283
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Athens,Greece
A timeless masterpiece.

The design of the multiple paths, two difficulties with different content, money managing...

No other adventure even attempted to do what this game did in such a masterful way.

Pity about the poisoned pawn though... I was very hyped for it :(
 

SF Kosmo

...please disperse...
Jul 7, 2020
7,889
9,382
735
Pity about the poisoned pawn though... I was very hyped for it :(
They do mention in the post that the team has their blessing to go back to making it on their own, and that this is more of a divorce than a full stop cancellation, but I think the team is sort of burnt on it. You never know though.

There's a LOT of behind the scenes drama behind this. Basically, when the original fan project (remake of Overseer) linked up with BFG they decided to replace the Chelsea date frame story from the original with a new frame story to set up a new storyline. They shot like 3 hours of new footage for this too.

But then it kind of stopped being a remake of Overseer entirely. BFG wanted to turn it into a new game that would retell bits and pieces of old Tex stories and retcon them into something new, but they were really slow to actually deliver new scripts and almost no finished design, so the team was just developing empty stages with no gameplay.

They also had different ideas about the gameplay. The dev team wanted to keep it pretty classic with maybe some more physical or traversal based puzzles to take advantage of the new tech. Meanwhile BFG was pitching collect em up unlockable videos and stuff.

Ultimately the team felt like the fact that they were working for spec (i.e. for free with payment on the back end after release) should have bought them some more creative control than they were getting, and the project just stalled out.

It could come back in more of it's original form, but a couple of the devs sound pretty bitter.
 

Krathoon

Member
Mar 26, 2011
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860
I am playing Tesla Effect. I can't believe it has been 7 years.
I always find it funny how so much of the game happens on Chandler Ave.. Even people in your case happen to stay at the Ritz.
 
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