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From Baldur's Gate to Syphon Filter: 14 games that need a HD remake

All these HD remasters are making us pine for the classics that are no longer loved. Here's 14 games we'd love to see remade for new-gen consoles.


With each new console generation comes a bevy of new titles with shiny graphical upgrades and more particle effects than a sequined Miss America gown. But with each system iteration, we lose a little something: the ability to play our previously purchased titles on the pretty new box. Neither Sony nor Microsoft are fond of cross-gen compatibility.

The original PlayStation 3 was backwards compatible with the PS2 library, but successive models of PS3 added or removed various features, including backwards compatibility. Xbox 360 was backwards compatible with some original Xbox games, but not all: the list of supported titles varied by region.

Due to this, there are many games out there the current-generation of gamers missed out on. And those of us who were able to indulge in previous generation titles can't seem to get them to look proper on our large, flat-screen TVs. Who wants to find an adapter for their PS2 or Xbox, hook it up to their big 52-inch LED TV and play a game which was created to display in 480i? No one.

So here's a list of games we would particularly like to see re-released in glorious HD on the latest console to grace the top shelf of our entertainment systems. Some of these you may recall were listed in our feature on franchises overdue for a reboot.

Armed and Dangerous - PC, Xbox - 2003


Released in 2003, the Planet Moon Studios-developed title was not only a really well made third-person action adventure game, but it was well funny too. Released by LucasArts, the shooter parodied other video games and films such as Star Wars and Monty Python and the Holy Grail. It also featured a stellar voice cast with actor Brian George (Seinfeld, The Big Bang Theory) as the hero Roman, as well as prolific voice over artists Jeff Bennett, John Mariano, Pat Fraley, and Tony Jay.

The game was released on PC but most probably played it on the original Xbox before Microsoft made it backwards compatible with Xbox 360 in 2007.

Owners of current-generations systems PlayStation 4 and Xbox One shouldn't be left out when it comes to such a fun and humorous game, and while it contains your typical shooter weaponry such as sniper rifles, machine guns and rocket launchers, it also contained all sorts of off-the-wall gadgets. The most memorable was the Land Shark Gun which the player would use to shoot a miniature shark into the earth. It would swim around in the ground and eat your enemies. It was rather awesome.

Unfortunately, a digital re-release may never happen, as the rights of the game were owned by LucasArts, and with Disney holding all IP from the firm, it's doubtful the House of Mouse would devote resources to such a project. The only hope for such a thing to occur would be a licensing agreement with a third-party developer – eg. EA and Star Wars. If LucasArts even owned the IP to begin with: Bigpoint Games acquired Planet Moon staff in 2011, but the deal didn't include the intellectual properties or other assets. Someone needs to find out who owns the IP and get to it.

The Simpsons: Hit and Run - PS3, GameCube, Xbox - 2003


One of the most fun and frustrating racing games ever to grace the planet in one VG247 staffer's opinion. A tongue in cheek take on Grand Theft Auto 3, the game saw Bart Simpson being abducted by what appears to be an alien tractor beam. Soon after, robotic wasps plague the city and Lisa Simpson takes it upon herself to find Bart using various clues presented in the game via missions. It all has to do with Buzz Cola being used as a mind-control beverage by aliens who wish to drive the yellow-folks mental for the reality show Foolish Earthlings. Series aliens Kang and Kodos play a role in this, but we don't wish to give the entire plot away.

With most developers focusing today on authentic racing simulators, other than Nintendo, it's high time gamers were given a racing game which mixes questing and timed driving missions again. Until that day comes, Activision needs to get Radical Entertainment on this pronto. With today's tech, some of the minor flaws in the game could be rectified such as camera and odd AI issues. Plus, imagine the town of Springfield presented in HD glory with 60fps. That would be a lovely thing indeed.

Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance – PS2, Xbox, GameCube, GBA - 2001


Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance was a great action RPG for folks unfamiliar with the PC series developed by Bioware. The Snowblind Studios developed title (PS2, XB only) had some of the best water effects in any game at the time, plus, they did a bang up job creating a nice twist on your typical isometric top-down dungeon crawler.

Set in the Forgotten Realms universe of Dungeon and Dragons 3rd Edition, a digital re-release would look smashing on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, and with the popularity of similar titles such as Diablo, Torchlight and the upcoming revamp of Gauntlet, it's proof that the genre is still a viable product. Plus, if CD Projekt could be coerced into taking up development of the PC version again, all the better.

While the sequel from Black Isle Studios wasn't on par with the original, the studio did a decent job and including both games could give players more incentive to purchase a digital re-release. An even bigger incentive? Toss in the GBA version developed by Destination Software as an Easter Egg.

Conker's Bad Fur Day – Nintendo 64 (2001), Xbox (2005)


Rare really went out with a bang when it released its last game for Ninetndo 64. Conker's Bad Fur Day was the most fun anyone had playing a lecherous, foul-mouthed, drunken squirrel who was dealing with the absolute worst day of his life. Between the tongue in cheek nods at popular culture such as Saving Private Ryan, Conan the Barbarian and The Matrix, Conker also had quite a bit of immature and hilarious potty humor. Everyone knows the Great Mighty Poo song. Seriously. Everyone.

A digital HD upgrade for Xbox One would need to come with a caveat though - pretend Conker: Live & Reloaded never existed. Seriously. Save the multiplayer component from it and ditch the rest. Bring back the minor obscenities within the voice dialogue and cull the auto-targeting system. The later was not needed. It made things too easy. Keep the zoom if you like, but no more auto-target. Okay. Maybe make it an option, but don' force it on us.

An additional goodie to add would be an extras DVD featuring Rare discussing development, the writing, showing content which didn't make it into the original, and providing a look at assets from the canned sequel, Conker's Other Bad Day. Microsoft owns Rare. They should totally get these guys doing something other than Kinect games. And before it is even brought up: No. We don't want Kinect functionality in a Conker game. Don't even broach the subject at the meeting.

Silent Hill – PlayStation – 1999


Yes, a Silent Hill HD Collection was released in 2012 for PS3 and Xbox 360 but it was missing something: the original Silent Hill released on PlayStation. Imagine one of the creepiest games ever created playing on your lovely HDTV in 1080p. It would be enough to cause you to sleep with the lights on at night. For weeks.

If Konami really wanted to do fans a solid, they would re-do the entire first three games and give fans a proper HD collection, and not the technically deficient Silent Hill 2 and Silent Hill 3 ports released two years ago it had to patch. If they stay true to the artistic direction, keep the ambiance, and leave things well enough alone, it might make up for the Silent Hill HD fans panned back in March 2012.

TimeSplitters – PlayStation 2 - 2000


Given the reception on Kickstarter and Crytek's blessing for the multiplayer-centric TimeSplitters Rewind, it's a proven fact love for the franchise is still at the forefront of gamer's hearts. Ask any Free Radical developer now part of Crytek after the fall of THQ and they'll probably tell you how many nickles they wish they had for everytime someone brought the series up.

It's no wonder: the first-person shooter franchise was created by ex- Rare employees, some of which worked on other popular shooters such as GoldenEye 007 and Perfect Dark. With each game featuring a time travelling element, players are able to travel to various locations set over several centuries. This not only provides a more stylized sense of play, but variety, and with the comic-styled design and the fun pop culture stereotypes, it was rather humorous as well.

With fans still clamoring for another entry in the series, why not tide them over with a true, HD collection for PS4 and Xbox One. Crytek would have a massive hit on their hands if a 1080p 60fps re-dex contained TimeSplitters,TimeSplitters 2, and TimeSplitters: Future Perfect. Add in the  level creator from Future Perfect, and fans would be whipping their wallets out and tossing them at Crytek's doorstep.

Syphon Filter – PlayStation -1999


Yes, Gabe Logan has been seen in his debut adventure since Syphon Filter's first released on the original PlayStation in 1999. Sony tossed it up on PlayStation Network back in 2007, but isn't it high time we got to see Gabe in all his 1080p glory? Of course it is.

Everybody seems to love stealth shooters, and Syphon Filter was one of the best around. Fans of the franchise would be pleased beyond words at a new entry in the series, but since that doesn't seem to be happening anytime soon, why not just put SCE Bend back to work on something other than a portable title, and have them give Syphon Filter 1-3 some spit-polish and release it through the PlayStation Store.

Bend is working on an unannounced PS4 title at the moment, and it's reportedly not a new Syphon Filter or a shooter, but since Sony isn't willing to tell us exactly what the studio formally known as Eidetic is up to – give the fans what they want. Please?

The Legacy of Kain Series - PlayStation, PC, Dreamcast, PS2, Xbox, GameCube – 1996-2003


Seriously, Crystal Dynamics: do it, Kain and Raziel are worthy of it. Plus, considering the series of action-adventure titles have sold over 3.5 million copies as of 2007, you know it's a guaranteed money maker.

Between the action, RPG elements, exploration and puzzle-solving, there's something for everyone and if you combined all five games in the series together, or broke it into two offerings, it might help sell more copies of the free-to-play Nosgoth which is set in the same universe.

Granted, series writer Hennig is now working for EA after a successful stint at Naughty Dog, but you could probably borrow her for an extras DVD along with the rest of the original staff (minus the Silicon Knights folks who many not wish to participate) and you have provided your fanbase with more than enough reasons to purchase a PlayStation 4 and Xbox One version of your hallowed series.

Just Cause 2 - PC, PS3, Xbox 360 - 2010


Avalanche has to be working on Just Cause 3. Let Square Enix say the domain registration which popped up back in April 2014 was routine IP protection all they want. We know better. Until it's released though, why not polish the Just Cause 2 up and release it on current-gen systems? The game is only four years old, and even today when you fire the game up, the Avalanche Engine 2.0 looks great.

Add in the bevy of DLC released for it - toss in the features and graphical effects missing from the console versions, enhanced water simulation, stereoscopic 3-D for those with 3D glasses and TVs and you have a winner on your hands.

What would seal the deal more than anything would be to add in a few of those crazy PC mods created by fans along with the multiplayer capabilities, allowing for thousands players to interact on the 400 square miles of Panau. It will garner plenty of love from the fanbase and newcomers as well, adding to the 6 million Just Cause 2 already sold.

Alan Wake – Xbox 360 (2010), PC (2012)


Remedy may be busy with Quantum Break, but the studio has promised us it hasn't forgotten about Alan Wake. Neither have we. It is a fantastic episodic survival horror game and completely worthy of an Xbox One visual upgrade.

The developers could sweeten the deal further if it were to add the Special One: The Signa, Special Two: The Writer, the Bright Falls web series, digital versions of the 144-page book The Alan Wake Files which was included in the limited collector's edition and the art/making of book Alan Wake: Illuminated.

What would be even better, is if Alan Wake's American Nightmare was added to sweeten the pot.

Platinum Games Trilogy featuring: MadWorld, Anarchy Reigns, Vanquish – PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox 360 - 2009-2013


SEGA could do it. You know they could, and why wouldn't Platinum want in on a collection of their most underrated games tarted up for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One? Plus, those without a Wii missed out completely with MadWorld as the bloody, Sin City style game was a platform exclusive.

Each of these are action-centric, colorful neat-em-ups (yes, even the monochrome and red blood splattered Mad World) - add in the tri-weapon download pack from the shooter Vanquish, and a bonus download of the stellar MadWorld and Vanquish soundtracks and it would make it a valuable package.

EA's Skate - PS3, Xbox 360 – 2007-2010


Instead of packing in all three EA Black Box games into one package, we suggest EA just pull all the best locations from each and bundle it together with all DLC released.

There doesn't seem to be a Skate 4 on the horzion, as far as we know, so releasing a polished version of the lauded series for the new consoles would help tide fans over. Should EA include the souvdtracks from the second and third outing – or at least a partial offering – it would be a nice package. The company could even let the fans, which are a very vocal community, vote on which tracks and courses to be included in such a digital offering.

If you look back over EA's quarterly and yearly financial reports, the company is always touting banner digital sales and how the numbers surpass physical sales; therefore, a visually upgraded offering with the best parks and courses pulled from the series would add more green to EA's coffers.

Dark Souls 2 - PS3, Xbox 360 - 2014


Before you jump our case for having the audacity to include a game which has been out for only a few months: hear us out.

Dark Souls 2 is one of the best in the “Souls” series created by From Software. It looks great on last-gen systems, it plays well on last-gen systems, and it has sold gangbusters on last-gen systems. Combine all of these factors together, and you have a pretty solid case for a PS4 and Xbox One upgrade.

Add in all the DLC, maybe even toss in am upgraded version of the first Dark Souls complete with the Prepare to Die/Artorias of the Abyss content and Namco Bandai Games could bank on selling another 2 million or more units digitally.

Honorary mention - Half Life 1&2


Because fuck it: we're not getting Half-Life 3 any time soon. That's all we have to say on the matter.

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About the Author
Stephany Nunneley-Jackson avatar

Stephany Nunneley-Jackson

News Editor

Stephany is VG247’s News Editor. With a brain that lacks adhesive ducks, the ill-tempered, chaotic neutral fembot does her best to bring you the most interesting gaming news. She is also unofficially the site’s Lord of the Rings/Elder Scrolls Editor.

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