As triple-A gaming becomes more time-consuming and expensive, a lot of publishers resorted to re-releasing some of their classics to fill the gaps, some inevitably left open by the delays caused by the pandemic too. Nintendo is breaking records with their Super Mario 3D All-Stars, people are raving about the upcoming Demon’s Souls remake (though that is currently only announced for next-gen), and we’re seeing a lot of classic RTS games like WarCraft 3, Command & Conquer and the original Age of Empires 3 trilogy getting brought back with a new coat of paint and various changes, we saw Crash Bandicoot and Spyro make triumphant comebacks, and so on.
But while nobody can really deny the potential of a Super Mario or an Age of Empires remake, we’ve certainly seen some weird remasters, games that were brought back from prior generations of consoles despite not necessarily selling too much, without necessarily being cult classics, without being too high on anybody’s list probably, even aside from titles released around launch that were quick cashgrabs like the Metro remasters, Prototype 1 and 2, etc… The list includes:
SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom - Rehydrated
A mouthful of a name for the remaster of a 3D platformer that really didn’t set the world on fire back in the day, but that got a bit of a second wind thanks to speedrunning.
Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning
While this game certainly has a cult status and a pretty vocal fanbase, the developers went bankrupt, there was a lengthy case with the state of Rhode Island due to the game receiving a substantial loan which they could not pay back, and basically everything around this franchise and IP got burnt to the ground. And yet, somehow, we not only managed to get a remaster, but there’s even brand new DLC coming out next year, about a decade after the original game, which gives us a glimmer of hope for a sequel/reboot one day.
Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit (2010)
This upcoming remaster of this then reboot of the iconic Hot Pursuit name was fairly well received, but it’s not quite the classic people have been calling for en masse. The original Hot Pursuit 2, the Underground games, the original Most Wanted, now those are the games that people are dying to get back. And yet those are nowhere to be seen, instead we get this fun but definitely not quite unforgettable racer.
Destroy All Humans!
You know, this has always been a fun 60’s sci-fi romp about little green (well, grey) aliens coming to Earth, forced to retaliate as their rescue mission is misinterpreted as an attack. Game did well enough for the day in terms of sales despite the meh reception, but they tanked hard after a few games as it was a bit of a one trick pony. For some reason, this game was brought back too.
So… what’s your pick for the weirdest, most unexpected, hardest to predict remaster of recent times?