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Author Topic: Remakes and Remasters  (Read 28194 times)

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Offline martTM

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Re: Remakes and Remasters
« Reply #255: February 20, 2018, 03:42:29 PM »
Not ashamed to say I'll buy it. At that price too. And without feeling bad or ripped off.

Someone the other day was arguing with me on Twitter (which is basically for arguments, right?) because they thought all remasters were too expensive and should be made available for very little because 'they're old' (fair enough) and 'the game's already made' so they require no effort to make. This latter point pisses me off greatly, mainly because I see it from the other side and know exactly how much effort it takes to make something like this, so people who suggest this can fuck right off (no-one here, just in general). Hell, just a port of a current gen game - say, Lumo which we didn't decide to bring to Switch until the PS4/Xbox One versions were already out - takes a huge amount of legwork, and that's basically the same game. So when a game needs to be remastered... well.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying it's the same as starting from scratch. But consider the factors:

• Engine changes. You can't just go into Unity - an old version of Unity at that, given the age of the games - and press the 'Make me a PS4 version' button, even though that appears to be what some people think happens. Sony and Microsoft pull up the ladder on which versions of engines are permitted for submission pretty quickly, meaning you need to be in something relatively current before you can do anything. Moving a finished game from one version of an engine to another is a massive ballache and often breaks things in more ways than I can count. No, you don't have to do the core design stuff that makes a game, but you do have to make sure all of it still works in all aspects (mechanics, physics, lighting, textures, etc, etc, etc). Usually, when you're doing this, it just doesn't.

• Online stuff. Same as the above - just because it worked before, doesn't mean it will now. Tech changes all the time, you need to often rework things to ensure they're right.

• Textures. 4K textures don't just make themselves. Lots of manpower needed there.

• Testing. Big, big, BIG part, even if the game's already done. See comments about engines about as to why that is.

• The background grunt work, like the stuff I do. Plus all that sweet, sweet marketing, which isn't cheap.

Even if it is a remake of an old game, no way that EA hasn't dropped at least half a million on this. It's a really good game too, and a massive one that lasts forever. If your argument against that not being worth the price of a game (and compared to new digital titles that start at £60, £35 is relatively cheap really) is that it's old, then sorry but... well.  <_<

EDIT: Thought occurred after I stepped away and went to do menial washing up - the argument from the 'It's an old game' crowd isn't that it's old and therefore should be cheaper, but rather that *they've* already played it or, worse, was on a console they happened to own or, worse worse, was on a console they didn't own but was alive in their active memory, and therefore they shouldn't be obliged to pay a reasonable price for it. That's not quite as bad as the classic 'I bought Super Mario World on the SNES, I shouldn't ever have to pay for it again, I want all future releases of it for free' complaint, but it's not far off.

If it's old to you, whether you actually played it or not, then great - well done, you're still alive and haven't died yet. But it's not old to everyone and *gasp* there are more people playing games than just you. In this particular case, my boy was two months away from being born when it came out and in all the time since then, I think he's seen me playing Paradise once when it dropped for Xbox One backwards compatibility. It's a new release on a modern console - no, it's not technically a new game, but that doesn't mean it's not a new experience for a lot of people.

Gahhhhhh... now I'm just getting cross and typing into the ether. Fuck sake.

Offline Garwoofoo

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Re: Remakes and Remasters
« Reply #256: February 20, 2018, 04:59:23 PM »
Ulp, sorry.

Offline Garwoofoo

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Re: Remakes and Remasters
« Reply #257: February 22, 2018, 04:09:25 AM »
*sneaks back into the thread after giving Mart a couple of days to simmer down*

Just to clarify: Burnout Paradise is a great game, you'll get no argument from me there.  (I played it through on the 360 on release, then again on the PS3 when it was given away as part of PS+, so I know it pretty well).

And I have no issue with remakes and remasters in general, as long as they add something worthwhile. The new Shadow of the Colossus remake looks amazing, for instance, it's been built from the ground up and runs at something like three times the framerate of the original.

I'm not sure that Burnout Paradise is really the same situation. It ran at 60fps on release, there's not much they can do to improve that.  The original even still runs on a current-gen console - stick the disk in your Xbox One and you'll be playing Burnout Paradise today. No need to even wait for the remake!  (And I do think 4K resolution and textures make a pretty small difference overall, especially on fast-moving games, but maybe that's just me).

I just think it's a shame that all the effort you describe above has gone into just re-releasing something that's already available, rather than making a new game.  Why not make a spiritual sequel with the same gameplay but a different map?  Create something new rather than just endlessly digging through back catalogues for stuff to exhume?  Burnout Paradise isn't the most redundant remaster we've seen (that probably goes to something like Sleeping Dogs, a game absolutely no-one was crying out to play in 1080p) but it's a load of work that ultimately adds nothing new to the pantheon of gaming experiences.

Anyway. I hope you enjoy it, I hope you get £35's worth of fun out of it compared to the version you can already play on a current-gen console you already own.  I do wonder what happens next gen though: do we simply start the cycle again?  Will everyone want 4K remasters of the 1080p remasters of the 720p games they've now bought three times?

Offline aniki

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Re: Remakes and Remasters
« Reply #258: February 22, 2018, 04:23:46 AM »
I just think it's a shame that all the effort you describe above has gone into just re-releasing something that's already available, rather than making a new game.  Why not make a spiritual sequel with the same gameplay but a different map?  Create something new rather than just endlessly digging through back catalogues for stuff to exhume?

Because, while it's not necessarily easy to update a game for new machines and higher resolutions, it is cheaper. There's essentially no pre-production time because all the design is done; yes, updating graphical assets requires artists but not on the scale of building a brand new map from scratch - it's a technical exercise more than it's a creative one. You need a much smaller team for a much smaller time (with the possible exception of QA, where you don't have three or more years of playtesting to fix bugs as you go).

That's reflected in the price, though. If Burnout Paradise came out today as a brand new game it would be £60+, with a season pass in tow and microtransactions all the way. A one-off £35 tag is pretty reasonable for the amount of content included, especially for all the people who've never played it before.

(I'm still keeping my fingers crossed for that Blur remaster, though.)

Offline martTM

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Re: Remakes and Remasters
« Reply #259: February 22, 2018, 05:29:45 AM »
(I'm still keeping my fingers crossed for that Blur remaster, though.)

Not in a million years, because then that'd mean Activision would have to admit all the ways it fucked up with the original release. Shame, really. I'd kill to even have this on the backwards compatibility list or PSNow...

Offline Ninchilla

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Re: Remakes and Remasters
« Reply #260: February 22, 2018, 05:31:09 AM »
Man, I forgot about Blur. Blur was great.

Offline martTM

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Re: Remakes and Remasters
« Reply #261: February 22, 2018, 03:16:52 PM »
I just think it's a shame that all the effort you describe above has gone into just re-releasing something that's already available, rather than making a new game.  Why not make a spiritual sequel with the same gameplay but a different map?  Create something new rather than just endlessly digging through back catalogues for stuff to exhume?

Let's go the other way on this then, thinking about development in general. Here's a list of great titles that currently sit on my PS4 that took a decent amount of time to make (say, 18 months minimum or longer), took a huge amount of effort not unlike what was mentioned above (including the need to move engine versions, again due to console companies pulling the ladder up) and are actually new content:

SteamWorld Dig 2
Armello
Mercenary Kings
Flinthook
Salt And Sanctuary
Crawl
Snake Pass
Darkest Dungeon
Ruiner
Earth's Dawn
Nex Machina
Night In The Woods
Enter The Gungeon
Hyper Light Drifter

Why do all of those have to sell for sub-£20, if not sub-£15 at launch? They fit the criteria, they're all great, they're all new content. So why don't they demand a £35 price point? Who decides that? Who gets to look at something and totally disregard the actual cost of it coming into existence, instead going 'Nah, that's not worth the price of a meal out'?

Sadly, the likes of Steam and its constant sales have made this a consumer-driven market when people can decide what something's worth based on who made it, not what it actually costs. They get to go 'Oh, only one person made this, I shouldn't have to pay for this' because they're entitled arseholes. They get to look at some stunning examples of pixel art and go 'Pfft, looks like a SNES game' and then stick it on a wishlist until it's less than the price of a Starbucks.

Those people, frankly, can go fuck themselves.

I get it, there's a bunch of folks who can't afford games and appreciate sales. But vocally, they're outnumbered by the cunts. And that fucks me right off.

Offline Garwoofoo

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Re: Remakes and Remasters
« Reply #262: February 23, 2018, 04:18:11 AM »
Generally I agree with you and I’ve been vocal in the past about sales competely undercutting the value of games, especially indie titles. I actually think PSN is worse for this than Steam, with constant sales and titles rotating in and out of different price buckets pretty much at random: at least on Steam the sales are fairly predictable.  But yes, buying games at full price has become a luxury for those who can afford it, with the backlogs we’ve all got it’s hardly surprising that people will wait for price drops.

There is an element of perceived value though. I like Steamworld Dig 2 a lot, I’d recommend it to anyone, but it’s a six-hour game. It’s not £35 or £50 quid’s worth.

Offline martTM

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Re: Remakes and Remasters
« Reply #263: February 23, 2018, 05:05:22 AM »
Resident Evil 7 is roughly a 6-8 hour game. So is Sonic Heroes. So are any of the Skylanders games. They're all currently £35 on PSN, and were more when they came out. And most of the games I listed are way more than that - some have almost infinite replay value. So why aren't they worth more?

Offline Garwoofoo

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Re: Remakes and Remasters
« Reply #264: February 23, 2018, 05:59:42 AM »
I think you’re being a bit naive if you think people will pay the same for Steamworld Dig as they do for Resident Evil 7. The gulf in production values is vast.

Offline martTM

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Re: Remakes and Remasters
« Reply #265: February 23, 2018, 09:45:09 AM »
Yes, but you said there wasn't £35 worth of game there - that's the point you made. You can have the shiniest game ever but if it only comes in at two hours, is it worth more than a pixel game that lasts five times as long?

I'm being pedantic, of course, but this is the problem. We can have civil conversations about this, but other people literally see black and white: this is made by a big company and so therefore is worth full price, this is one guy who's spent over five years of his life realising the vision (see: Owlboy), fuck him, it's worth a fiver at best.

Offline Garwoofoo

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Re: Remakes and Remasters
« Reply #266: February 23, 2018, 10:15:40 AM »
Owlboy’s not a great example, it looks like an Amiga game, and not in a good way. No-one, and I mean no-one, is going to pay £35 for that.

Maybe part of the problem is that we’re awash in 2D pixel art platformers at the moment? Personally I’m much more inclined to pay full price for something genuinely unusual like Darkest Dungeon or The Witness than I am for yet another quirky 8-bit side scroller. I’d probably enjoy Celeste or Owlboy but there’s nothing there that looks much better than stuff I’m getting off PS+ each month. Call me shallow but I’d rather wait for the new Ori game which will have much the same (if not better) gameplay and far, far better production values too.

Bottom line is people charge what the market will stand. Unusual and ambitious indie games do make it into the full price bracket (e.g. No Man’s Sky) but the whole sector is so awash with me-too titles and single-gimmick fillers that it’s not surprising that people aren’t willing to take a punt on them.