By Roberto Campos
Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater HD is the latest remake to grace the list of video game classics being re-dubbed for the high definition format. This trend has grown steadily over the years, the earliest of which I can remember are the Pokemon Red and Blue remakes, and has claimed victim to The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time and Metal Gear Solid.
In the movie realm, remakes generally mean that Hollywood's idea well has run dry, and just wants to make a little cash by re-imagining a classic. With more and more video game remakes being produced it’s becoming harder to tell if these HD rereleases are genuine or simply cash grabs.
Last year remakes were very popular and included games like Resident Evil 4 and Halo: Combat Evolved and brought gamers back to classic games for this generation’s consoles. While the nostalgia was great at first, now that the dust has settled, it leaves me wondering if we need to remake all of the classics.
Games such as the those mentioned previously receiving the HD treatment is understandable because of their significance in the video game world. Yet games like Halo 2, which was rumored but has since been denied, and Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater really don’t need remakes. Sure they are great games, but are they good enough to be remade and worth the money to play again in HD?
I say maybe.
Classics like Sonic, Doom and Zelda can have a case made for their remakes. Young kids never got to experience these classics and it’s nice to be able to play them on this generation’s consoles rather than a Nintendo 64. But I think we are confusing classic from good.
Remaking everything gives a sense of complacency in the gaming industry, as if we’ve already created all the best games we can so we should just remake them. Now that’s an over exaggeration because new games come out all the time that test the boundaries of what’s possible, but I don’t think such a statement is a stretch.
The video game industry is, and has always been, about advancing forward, and while these remakes are a nice look at the past, we need to realize that those games are in the past and move to bigger and greater things.
Andrisang reported in an articlepublished late last month that Square Enix CEO Yoichi Wada said there would be no Final Fantasy VII remake until the team could produce a game that surpassed it.
That is a move that I can really respect and should be taken into consideration before remaking games. Game developers should really be asking themselves why they are remaking certain games. Wada’s statement says that he is more worried about making a game that surpasses one of the best games of all time instead of remaking one of the best games of all time.
Game developers should be pushing forward. It can be fun to experience the games that we loved to play back in the day but those games are in the past. As more and more games are being remade it’s starting to look less like paying homage to the classics and more like a way to make a quick buck.