The Top 5 HD Remakes We Want To See

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Posted December 12, 2014 by Sean Mesler in Video Games

Welcome back! The year is almost over and we decided to talk about the uprezzed elephant in the room, the HD remake. Sure some folks don’t like this seemingly growing trend, but others don’t mind it and since it’s going to happen anyway, we decided to throw our suggestions into the mix. So here are our  Top 5 HD remakes we want to see!

John:

5. Rock and Roll Racing

Racing games are great, but barely any can compare to the ridiculousness that was Rock ‘n’ Roll Racing. This game from 1993 set you up in a deadly race against random aliens all across the universe. However, the cars in Rock ‘n’ Roll Racing weren’t exactly normal. All of these cars had offensive and defensive weapons and booster rockets to aid in the carnage. In fact, some of the cars were video game “tributes” to Luke Skywalker’s landspeeder.

Of course, the most important part of Rock ‘n’ Roll Racing was the soundtrack. The genius developers took classic tunes like Paranoid by Black Sabbath and converted them to a weird MIDI format, which made the game that much better.

Making Rock ‘n’ Roll Racing into a new game wouldn’t be too hard. I don’t want fancy 3d graphics or new songs. All I want is for the game to look great on a gigantic TV. All of the audio and gameplay elements could stay the same. Completely redoing the game and changing essential elements would screw it up. Oh, and those announcers would need to return as well.

4. Zombies Ate My Neighbors

Before Borderlands, Halo, or Gears of War, there was one cooperative shooter that trounced everything else. This game paired super random enemy types with unique levels to create a very fun, but fairly difficult experience named Zombies Ate My Neighbors. The premise of Zombies Ate My Neighbors is fairly simple in that you play as two young adults armed with squirt guns. Your goal is to rescue all of the neighbors from multitudes of zombies before they are brutally murdered. The concept is simple, but sometimes simplicity is perfect. You were able to run around neighborhoods, malls, and other levels while searching for these neighbors in distress. Of course, your path would occasionally be blocked, so you would need to find keys, alternate pathways, or hidden areas to aid in your rescue missions.

It wouldn’t be too difficult to make a new HD version of Zombies Ate My Neighbors. The game was very solid (and a little stressful), so the developers would just need to add in some fancy artwork and maybe a couple new weapons. One bonus was the large amount of levels included in the original game, so they wouldn’t even need to include a Season Pass or some BS like that. I would absolutely play Zombies Ate My Neighbors again, provided there was split-screen cooperative play.

3. Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars

When I was a young child, there were only two RPG’s that mattered to me: Final Fantasy III and Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars. I was completely amazed that someone had made a unique version of Mario, although my young brain didn’t quite understand the concept of an RPG. Of course, I didn’t really care because Super Mario RPG was the perfect fan-service, in my opinion. It was extremely enjoyable to create a party of heroes that included Mario, Bowser, and other characters. Even better, I was able to explore new and old areas to my heart’s content while fighting random enemies. Super Mario RPG offered a slower-paced version of a beloved property, and it included multiple secrets, including a 2d version of Mario that could be unlocked behind a specific curtain.

Recreating RPG’s is all the rage these days, if Square Enix is to be believed, and Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars is the perfect candidate for an HD remake. The fan service alone would make me want to replay the game, but the solid gameplay would keep me engaged (yes, it sounds like a cliché). Plus, the developers could include some new attacks and enemy types to mix it up a little. Besides, who doesn’t want to revisit Nimbus Land?

2. Star Wars: Jedi Academy

Star Wars: Jedi Academy wasn’t great, but it ended up being one of my most played games during my younger years. Raven Software were the developers in charge of awesome Star Wars games long before they became the Call of Duty map pack developers. Raven started with Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast before moving onto Jedi Academy. Now, many people prefer Jedi Outcast because of the unlockable dismemberment ability, but I preferred Jedi Academy for the customizable characters, varying areas to explore, and double lightsabers. Plus, Jedi Academy had multiplayer modes set in cloud city, so all you had to do to win was use force choke and throw your enemies off of the walkways.

I would absolutely love to see an HD remake of Jedi Academy because the original was actually pretty ugly. Raven was working with the technology at the time, so they couldn’t really make the prettiest game of all time. Plus, the HD remake could include some more levels. Jedi Academy wasn’t the longest game around, but all of the included levels were really fun, especially Hoth. My only question would be “can Raven include that dismemberment mode from Jedi Outcast?”

1. Sid Meier’s Pirates

Sid Meier’s Pirates (the remake of a 1987 classic) came out at the perfect time in my life. Pirates of the Caribbean was one of my new favorite movies, and I basically wanted to pretend that I was Jack Sparrow. Luckily, Firaxis and 2K recreated this classic pirate game for the original Xbox and PC. This was especially helpful because my original copy of the 1987 game didn’t run on my PC. Apparently, 3 ½ diskettes were unusable.

Sid Meier’s Pirates had a great design in that it was an isometric view that worked well with the wide-open Caribbean setting. You could take your pirate ship (which I named the Black Pearl) and travel around in search of women, buried treasure, and your kidnapped family. Travel times depended on storms, rations, and attacks by other pirates. Pirates also included a timing-based control scheme for sword fights on pirate ships or in forts, but this control scheme also worked for dancing minigames and wooing the ladies. However, my favorite aspect of Sid Meier’s Pirates was the fact that you could lose the game if you didn’t find all of your family members in time. There were no second chances in this pirate universe. You just had to restart the entire game and try to find your family again—in their new, randomized locations.

Yes, I know that versions of Sid Meier’s Pirates have been released for the iPad and Wii, but they don’t count. I want a brand-new, gorgeous version of Sid Meier’s Pirates with the same goofy elements.

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Nick:

5. Metal Arms: Glitch In The System

Probably known as one of the best games you’ve never played, Metal Arms was a ridiculous 3rd person shooter similar to that of the Ratchet and Clank series. You played as this robot named Glitch who did more than just shoot some guns. My personal favorite mechanic was the ability to take control of other robots by tethering to them, allowing you the option to use the enemy’s own weapons against them, along with an assortment of vehicles to wreak havoc with. Why haven’t you heard more about this game? A sequel had started development when developer Swingin’ Ape Studios was bought out by Blizzard to take over and work on Starcraft: Ghost.

4. Splinter Cell Chaos Theory

I don’t think very many Splinter Cell fans will argue with me that Chaos Theory was the best in the series. Before Sam Fisher went the action hero route, he was a stealthy spy that was at the height of his awesomeness teaching us that stealth is an art. As much as I love the Spies vs Mercs introduced with Splinter Cell Blacklist, Chaos Theory had the formula for multiplayer locked down. With the power of the current generation, Chaos Theory could benefit greatly.

3. Mass Effect Trilogy

Okay, Okay. I know this is really three games, but there was a lot to love with the trilogy. The original game was a fantastic RPG, but a bit lacking in the core gunplay. ME2 was pretty much awesome all the way through. ME3 left us hanging in the end, but introduced the surprisingly fun multiplayer. Getting the entire package with a slight graphical boost for current gen consoles just seems like a no-brainer.

2. Final Fantasy IX

Everyone seems to be hung up on Final Fantasy VII, but IX was honestly my favorite from the PS1 era. Although the characters were a bit childish looking, the game benefited from returning to its more traditional roots of gameplay. The story was actually quite solid and had some interesting qualities that really brought out its full charm. Not to mention, I would really love to ride my chocobo again in beautiful crisp HD.

 1. Star Wars Republic Commando

Quite possibly my favorite Star Wars game of all time. Republic Commando melded a lot of FPS gameplay elements seen in previous shooters like Halo or Metroid Prime, but integrated cover and squad based combat. You get the chance to play special ops clone troopers with a variety of weapons from the Star Wars universe, all of which gave a nice shade of personality to the clone troopers. As far as today’s standards go, the AI could probably use an upgrade to compensate, but the gameplay still holds up as a slower-paced shooter, similar to that of Rainbow Six: Vegas. There might be other great Star Wars games out there, but this one deserves top spot in my book.

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Sean:

5. Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots

I absolutely loved Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots. From it’s bats@%t crazy story, to the variety of gameplay set pieces to it’s gorgeous graphics, it was easily one of my favorite games of 2008. While I don’t think it’s absolutely necessary to remake it for current gen consoles, I would love an excuse to experience it again on current gen consoles. And knowing Kojima, he wouldn’t settle for an uprezzed version of it. I could see him finding ways to implement some of the DualShock 4’s features into the gameplay.

4. Mass Effect Trilogy

I’m sure this would be on a lot of people’s list. Bioware’s space epic was bold, innovative and wholly fantastic. Being able to experience Commander Shepard’s rise from Spectre to savior (depending on your perspective and choices) of the universe is definitely something that begs for the HD remake treatment. And hopefull Bioware would use the extra horsepower to improve the more nagging issues that dinged the original versions like texture pop-in amd issues with saves carrying over between games.

3. Uncharted series

The main reason I want this is for Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, my favorite game of last generation, but it doesn’t make sense to port the second game and not the first and third so they’re all here on my list. Not taking anything away from Drake’s Fortune and Drake’s Deception – I liked them both quite a bit – but Uncharted 2 stands above the rest for me and experiencing it all over again in gorgeous 1080p with 60fps, would easily get me to pony up the cash.

2. Final Fantasy XII

I’ll say it and I’ll say it proudly; Final Fantasy XII is by far my favorite Final Fantasy game. I loved the look, I loved the story but most of all I loved the way it played. Removing random encounters altogether and the Gambit system were the two things that always stuck with me years after I experienced the game for the first time back in 2006. Over 100 hours I spent in the world of Ivalice and I would gladly do it all over again in widescreen and HD.

1. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic

Come on now. I can’t see why this game wouldn’t be at the top of everyone’s list. It’s probably the greatest Star Wars game ever made and has a story that’s arguably better than most of the canon. Seeing this game completely remade for current gen would be something that could not only prove successful, but possible get the series back to where it started and belongs, as a single player, story driven experience. Do it now, Bioware. Pretty please?

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So how do our lists stack up against yours? What games would you like to see done again with the HD treatment? Let us know in the comments!


About the Author

Sean Mesler

Sean is a semi-retired hardcore kid, semi-grown up and transplanted from his original home of New York to Los Angeles. A lover and critic of movies, music and video games, Sean is always quick with an opinion, a heaping dose of snark, and a healthy dose of pragmatism. PSN & Live Gamertag: N2NOther