Sometimes you don’t want something new, you want to take something old and give it the treatment it deserves. Thankfully, the games industry agrees, with video game remakes and remasters coming out every year bringing beloved games of the past right up to date. From a lick of paint and a polish to entire revamps and fixes, there’s tonnes to choose from. That’s why we’ve taken the time to put together our list of the absolute best video game remakes and remasters.
2019’s Resident Evil 2 Remake set the bar for remakes. It didn’t just enhance the visuals, it completely overhauled every part of the game, bringing it up to date and making it sublime to play on modern systems. If you want to know what a video game remake can do – look no further than Resident Evil 2’s twisted take on Raccoon City.
Grim Fandango Remastered
Video game remasters don’t have to necessarily reinvent the wheel, sometimes you just need a few tweaks and a graphical upgrade to make it worthy of praise. Grim Fandango Remastered does exactly that, it nicely spruces up the looks of this brilliant adventure game whilst also ironing out some of the frustrations. Tank controls – we’re looking at you.
It’s far from complete yet but so far Halo: The Master Chief Collection has been a brilliant expansion of some fundamental FPS games. From Halo to Halo 4, this series is a definitive Xbox franchise and now many are making their debuts on the PC with upgraded graphics and support that’s making them better than ever before.
Infinity Engine Enhanced Editions
Baldur’s Gate, Baldur’s Gate II, Icewind Dale, and Planescape: Torment are games that define the RPG landscape, and developers Beamdog have given us enhanced editions that make them accessible to all. WIth improved support for larger resolutions and many UI issues ironed out, there’s now no excuse not to dive into the Sword Coast or Sigil.
Final Fantasy VII Remake
Sometimes a remake goes one step further, and the Final Fantasy VII Remake does exactly that. Not content with enhancing the gameplay and the visuals, Square Enix have made the Final Fantasy VII Remake into its own thing, with new twists on familiar plots and characters. If you’re a fan of the original this is essential, as you’ll be going places you never dreamed of.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered
The original Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare is still rightly considered the highlight of this long-running series. With Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered this intense FPS game is brought bang up to date for a new generation to experience its twists, turns, and ghillie suits. If you haven’t played it – now’s the time, as it’s more than worth your time.
Dark Souls: Remastered
The original Dark Souls was a masterpiece but it’s fair to say that its PC port needed a little love. Thankfully it got that love, in a stunning version that fixed all the issues of the original version and improved upon nearly every aspect. Finally the game that put ‘You Died’ on everyone’s lips can be experienced the way it deserves.
The Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena
Movie tie-ins have often been a bit hit and miss, more miss than hit. Then out of nowhere came The Chronicles of Riddick, a game that bridged the films Pitch Black and the Chronicles of Riddick. A stealthy melee-em-up with a delicious narration from Vin Diesel and a wonderful mix of combat and non-combat sections, it was great on release. Now in a remastered version with a new set of levels on the spaceship Dark Athena, Chronicles of Riddick shows us not only how remasters can be done, but how movie tie-in games can be done too.
For many PC gamers the Command & Conquer series was a first introduction to real time strategy. Their legacy hasn’t ever been forgotten, and in the Command & Conquer Remastered Collection PC gamers can relive their old memories with crisp new visuals. What’s most remarkable about this game remaster is the care and detail to attention, the graphics have been completely updated with new sprites that are utterly perfect, and the UI’s been updated too to remove any of the old issues. It’s truly a masterclass in game remastering.
Finally, Trials of Mana. Originally known as Seiken Densetsu 3 and only available in Japan, this sequel to Sword of Mana was an expansion of the original in every way. Now in Trials of Mana it’s been expanded again with new, well, everything. It’s a robust game filled with things to do, places to see, enemies to kill, and with immense replay value, this isn’t just any old remake – it’s proof that Square Enix are masters of the remake.
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