Nowadays, the hype surrounding rebooting games is stronger than ever. While many classics are being beaten with the nostalgia stick, there are some glaring omissions. Here are the titles I believe have been missed and should certainly be remade for the #PlayStation 4 platform.
Half-Life turned 18 this year and is still one of the only games from that period of the late-'90s that I would consider to be one of the best games ever. The experience #HalfLife provides and the mass engagement within the story that the player experiences is second to none.
Its influences lie not just in the fact that the game plays so well, but that it was so effortlessly able to immerse you in Dr. Gordon Freeman's world. Gordon was the unfortunate soul who was stuck in the Black Mesa facility at the wrong time. We have all been there in some sense, but what happened to Gordon is unlike anything I had ever experienced before.
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The original Half-Life reinvigorated the first-person shooter genre. It took the idealism that we'd been presented with in previous titles and gave us a reason for the attacks. If you went around killing all the security guards and scientists, you would not proceed in this game. It also presented a respectable and cohesive storyline in a sort of realistic environment.
As a result, the game felt less reliant on levels, instead offering a free-flowing feel where you felt literal progression through the environments, rather than simply finishing a stage. It seems to be the first #FPS where you do not start off by shooting the place up. This is a positive — it helps build the story and introduces the key characters. Modern games could learn from this one.
4. Burnout 3: Takedown
This game was carnage from beginning to end. The high-paced, adrenaline-fueled racing had you on the edge of your seat, whether dodging traffic to increase your boost bar or tactically ramming your opponent into a wall to gain that extra advantage. Yep, the game had it all.
Burnout perfectly represented the madness of an arcade-style game. The sense of speed shown through the amazing blurring effects of the surrounding environment made you feel as if you were traveling at a ridiculous speed through busy traffic. The races were tense and frantic. A rival racer could pull up behind you, slamming you into a nearby barrier to level your car and overtake you at any moment. Tension was high and your alertness was tested. Let us not forget the amazing crash and stunt mode that encouraged destruction in order to gain a higher score.
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3. The Ico & Shadow Of The Colossus Collection
2001's #Ico broke the mold, showing the true potential of art in video games. The simplistic approach to the gameplay in which the user would not rely on action to win was pure genius, with the bulk of the game comprised of puzzle solving and environmental exploration. Ico represented a welcome break from the overly saturated world of the first-person shooter and was very much seen as a breath of fresh air for dedicated gamers.
Shadow of the Colossus followed later and was just as welcomed, if not more so. Yes, it was simplistic in its approach, but this played to its advantage. Action was minimal, with the challenge coming from using your mind over the repetitive attack combinations. The excitement that is currently present for The Last Guardian is due to the nostalgia that is still present from these earlier games in the series.
Beautifully combining art with puzzle solving, the PlayStation 4 game Journey was the closest I have seen to a modern-day remastering, and that was a gorgeous game in itself. At times it was very moving, with the artwork and fluidity of gameplay making for a redolent experience.
Ico and Shadow of the Colossus have both been remastered on the #PS3, but with original copies of the #PS2 versions becoming increasingly scarce, a remastering would be perfect for old and new fans alike.
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2. The Simpsons: Hit & Run
With The Simpsons trundling through its 28th season, there have been quite a few video game outings for the famous yellow family. While Springfield's finest have been responsible for some of the most memorable moments in TV history, sadly those memories have not translated well to the world of video games. Notable flops have included Bart vs. the Space Mutants, The Simpsons Wrestling and The Simpsons Skateboarding. But through the quagmire of poor titles, some gems do shine. The two most notable of these are The Simpsons: Road Rage and Hit & Run.
Hit & Run took the fundamentals Road Rage and vastly improved upon them. The driving aspects were very similar, with checkpoint-based races, time trials and destructible environments (unless it's a thick tree trunk we're talking about here). Think Grand Theft Auto without the violence and a lot more yellow. It was the family-friendly answer to the ultraviolent alternative. The dialogue was excellent, with many well-timed jokes thrown in, and all your favorite characters were present with large wardrobes of clothes they'd worn throughout the TV series.
Beloved cars from #TheSimpsons also made a showing, including the Plow King's truck, the Canyonero and Krusty's clown car. These all combined to create a highly enjoyable experience for people of all ages. If recreated for PS4, I'm sure it would be a huge success, and I for one would be playing it.
1. Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2
The perfect combination of awesome skateboarding and kickass nu metal, 2000's Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2 has long been seen as the pinnacle of alternative sports games, beating off stiff competition from the likes of Mat Hoffman's Pro BMX and SSX.
What #TonyHawk did differently is up the tempo and throw in some quick button-bashing combos to really give the game an arcade feel. You always tried to get the highest score to beat your friends; if this meant grinding around a halfpipe continually for five minutes, then so be it. The two-player games only added to the enjoyment, with challenges such as who can score the highest on one trick and H.O.R.S.E., which were both challenging and enjoyable.
As for the soundtrack, where do you even begin? The subtle mix of metal music with some of the more popular tracks of the time only added to the overall feel of the game. #Metal and #skateboarding is a match made in heaven, kind of like mac 'n' cheese or pizza with pepperoni. It just works. The wide range of characters creates a variant on the gameplay. One character will have a greater grinding ability, whereas someone else will be able to perform tricks faster.
For me, no other skating game has come close to replicating the success and enjoyability that this game presented. Skate 2 was a doozy, but Pro Skater 2 seems to be the title that always draws me back to skating games. I am not even a fan of the sport, but this game had me hooked from day one.
Please, PlayStation 4, remake this game, and the other titles on this list. They all deserve to relive their past glory.
Got any other ideas for games that need a remaster for PS4? Sound off in the comments section below.