We sort of lost track of all the portable entries in the Kingdom Hearts series at some point after Chain of Memories. Let's see… there's 358/2 Days, Birth By Sleep, Birth By Sleep Final Mix, Kingdom Hearts Mobile, Coded (which had… eight or nine Japan-only episodes?), Re:coded for DS – are we missing any other zany subtitles? At any rate, none have quite met the standard set by the original Kingdom Hearts I and II on PS2.
That said, we're still excited for Kingdom Hearts 3D on 3DS, and we'd love to replay the two main entries in the series as a refresher to the notoriously convoluted story. And with Kingdom Hearts III nowhere on the horizon, it makes sense to at least bring KH and KHII to PS3 where we can enjoy their bright colors and iconic characters in HD.
This one’s kind of a no-brainer; not only are the first three Metal Gear Solid games excellent, fondly remembered and now a bit dated-looking, but outside of the stuff Sony itself published, there are few franchises more closely associated with the PlayStation brand. The exploits of Solid Snake and Big Boss were always something to look forward to, filled as they were with stealth kills, awesomely complicated boss fights, giant robots and bizarre chatter about the Cold War. Even the second game was stellar, despite everyone’s whining about how horrible and annoying Raiden was.
An HD remake of the first three games could potentially give us a version of Metal Gear Solid with sharper textures and fewer jaggy lines (although in a pinch, we’d take an HD version of The Twin Snakes instead), and would give anyone who passed on the series the first time around another chance to watch its strange, increasingly convoluted spy narrative unfold for themselves. It’d also give anyone who passed on the second and/or third games a chance to go back and see exactly what they missed by staying away.
Have you actually tried to go back and play the first Devil May Cry recently? If it's been a while, it can be a little hard. The game was the PS2’s first defining action-platformer, a game that influenced scores of others, but now its once-bleeding-edge visuals have aged terribly, and its controls and fixed camera angles will be totally disorienting to anyone more readily acquainted with the more recent games. That’s a sad legacy for a game that once thrilled millions with its acrobatic, two-pistols-and-a-big-sword demon fights. Ideally, an HD remake would bring the first game up to speed with its sequels, and give us brilliantly sharp magma spiders that look the way we remember them – not the way they actually were.
A remade collection of the first three DMCs – which, if it arrived next year, would coincide with the series’ 10th anniversary(!!!) – would also give fans a Trophy-flavored incentive to wade back into the excellent-but-punishingly-difficult Devil May Cry 3: Dante’s Awakening. It’s probably too much to ask that an HD remake of Devil May Cry 2 would make the game any less of a letdown, but we can always hope.
Prince of Persia may have been a big game in the early PC and Mac days, but the series was in danger of being forgotten by the time Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time hit the PS2. Thanks to the sterling work of PoP creator Jordan Mechner and Ubisoft Montreal, PoP got a grand update, but kept the core mechanic of one heroic prince dodging dangerous obstacles in a castle. Sands of Time redefined 3D platforming. Never before had jumping from wall to banister, to lever, to wall, to column, to banner been so smooth, fun, and well-balanced. Each new area was a new puzzle that not only involved quick thinking, but precise movements as well. And you didn’t need to worry about leaps of faith leading to your death, as the titular Sands of Time could take you back instantly to before you fell to your death. It was ingenious.
The first sequel, Warrior Within, is notorious for its very poor redefinition of the Prince as an aggro dick, but the core gameplay was still great. The third game, Two Thrones, scaled back the emo-ness of the second game, had more gameplay improvements and made a perfect coda to the series, making it a trilogy worth reliving. And now’s the perfect time for it to get an HD remake. Not only was there a kind of good film for Sands of Time this year, but a new interquel game, Forgotten Sands, came out as well. Sands of Time is fresh in gamers’ minds again, and if rumors are to be believed, our wish may be coming true soon.
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