Sunday, 27 December 2009

Keeping Fresh A Classic

Retro-gaming is fun, but it does have one drawback. Graphically, games tend to look dated very quickly. So while the gameplay stays great, one can't help but notice that what was shiny and new a few years ago is now bordering on the unpalatable.

Enter Serious Sam HD

For those unfamiliar to the gaming world, Serious Sam was one kickass game back in 2001. While Duke Nukem Forever was still delayed and everything had suddenly become about multiplayer deathmatch, Serious Sam was a reminder that mindless violence can be done so well. And it wasn't some big budget enterprise, but a team from some obscure country. And it kicked arse. Serious Sam and its quasi-sequel Serious Sam: The Second Encounter meant hours of fun and some great visuals and technology all rolled into one. Could a sniper rifle work in a fast-paced action shooter? Evidentially yes.

Fast forward to a couple of months ago, after a disappointing real sequel I had moved away from such games and into the darkside of online multiplayer or into an RPG hybrid - depending on the day. So imagine my surprise when browsing Steam one day I come across the following trailer.

I was sold, well not then and there on the spot. I waited until Steam's holiday special and took advantage of the low low price. After all, it's an 8 year old game... Gah, I'm distracted. Anyways, back to what I was saying. I finally got a chance to sit down and give it a spin today. And what was it? Exactly the same game I remember playing 8 years ago, only it looked better. Looked much better. Not photo-realistic, not some weird hybrid , but still Serious Sam only in HD!

And this got me thinking, there are so many more games I'd love to play again if not for the off-putting graphics. I'd be all over System Shock 2 if it looked like its spiritual successor. Just glad that Blizzard is doing this next year, hopefully deviating as little from the original as possible.

Overall I applaud this effort, and look forward to playing the HD version of the superior Serious Sam: The Second Encounter due out next year.

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