Classic shooter Yars' Revenge being remade for XBLA, PSN and PC

Early next year, an updated version of Yars' Revenge, a nearly-30-year-old classic, will be available for download on Xbox Live Arcade, PlayStation Network, and PC. The best-selling Atari 2600 title has been re-imagined with anime-influenced art and an expanded story, which follows a formerly-brainwashed 'Yar' out for revenge against the evil Qotile empire.

Above: The Atari 2600 original... or possibly some kind of signal interference

The game will include local co-op, and obviously won't look or play quite like the original (which, by the way, you can play in Microsoft's Game Room). Killspace Entertainment, a studio founded last year by largely former Obsidian and Pandemic developers, is building the game. Check out the teaser trailer below (they weren't kidding with that 'anime-inspired' bit).

If you're old enough to have fond memories of Yars' Revenge, what do you think about the direction Atari and Killspace are taking it? And if you're not, what do you think about other things which are relevant to your interests?

Nov 17, 2010




  • TheVoid - November 19, 2010 6:33 a.m.

    @Eric Bratcher - You and I are on EXACTLY the same page. And no, I don't believe that chick could bite through a spacebrick, which makes me sad. Too bad no one else seems to know what we are talking about. I can't blame them for being excited over the trailer, but only because they know no better. We, on the other hand, see a troubled road ahead that only an actual gameplay clip might - and that's a big might - set our minds at ease. I should also mention I am digging your "remake vision" as well. I floated some lofty ideas myself but basically it comes down to this: Moving this game into 3D isn't as fearful as it might be for other classic games because there is so much they could do with it if they remain true to the original concept. But then again I thought that of Defender and Asteroids as well and look how those 3D remakes turned out... @TylerWilde - First of all, big fan. Now that that is out of the way, allow me to take aim and fire as you've dug yourself a bit deeper with your reply because you are now down two, if not three: 1. Referring to this beloved 2600 classic as a "classic arcade shooter" - the original gaffe - which I see has since been edited (so forgive me if the exact quote is off a bit). The "arcade" blunder wasn't exactly forgivable but the "shooter" label really put it over the top. For an oldtimer like myself it was the equivalent of hearing someone 30 years from now refer to Shadow of Colossus as a "hack and slash XBox exclusive". Suggested punishment: Find and play Yar's Revenge (which is hardly a punishment as it holds up quite well considering it's age). 2. Ready? Here goes: Yar's Revenge wasn't based on Star Revenge, but rather Star Castle. And loosely at that. Very loosely, but not SO loosely that there is no grounds for comparison. Still, you totally fumbled the name. Better still? There is no such game as Star Revenge. I'm guessing you meant Star Castle but somehow got confused between the Yar's wiki page and your GR admin page. Mistakes happen, I get it, honestly I do. But it still stands as two strikes, sorry. Suggested punishment: Find and play Yar's Revenge and report back with your thoughts. Regain some of that journalistic credibility that has so clearly been spilled all over this freshly mopped floor. 3. Nitpicking here a bit, but I do have to call it out because it was an extremely flimsy save on your part: In your reply you say "It is both "arcade-style" and based on...". Having already called out what comes next, let's focus on the confusion surrounding Yar's Revenge being "arcade-style". Here's the thing: JUST ABOUT EVERY ATARI 2600 GAME WAS "ARCADE STYLE". Only a very, very, very select few games pushed those boundaries (thinking Raiders of the Lost Ark and Adventure as two examples off the top of my head), and even then those conceivably could have been converted into coin-op versions with minimal effort. Aside from the cabinet-ready control scheme (one joystick, one button and that's goddamn it folks), the games themselves weren't pushing any time-intensive and/or steep-learning-curve concepts. Nearly everything was score-based (just like in the arcades) with limited lives (just like in the arcades) with difficulty ramping up with each cleared stage (just like in the arcades). So if THAT was the main source of confusion surrounding your statement, well... Suggested punishment: Play the entire Atari 2600 catalog. Twice.
  • iluvmyDS - November 19, 2010 3:13 a.m.

    The art style reminds me of Evangelion.
  • Spybreak8 - November 19, 2010 2:17 a.m.

    I played the original on my parent's Atari 2600, oh yeah old school.
  • GamesRadarTylerWilde - November 18, 2010 6:54 p.m.

    @TheVoid Regarding the "arcade" reference, I was unclear. It is both "arcade-style" and based on arcade game Star Revenge, but it's true that Yars' Revenge itself was never in an arcade. Sorry for the confusion.
  • EricBratcher - November 18, 2010 6:23 p.m.

    I'm with TheVoid. I've been thinking for ages how cool a new Yars would be if it were sort of a Wing Commander-like space combat sim, with Yars that could morph into different forms like the dragon in Panzer Dragoon Saga and different nebulas/neutral zones that affected the flow of battle, and massive Zorlon cannon blasts tearing things up like the ion cannon in Empire Strikes Back and with a Homeworld/Battlestar Galactica vibe and maybe a legit multiplayer co-op component. Then I saw this and I died a little. Yars are not people. They're humanoid alien flies. I know the original fiction is hokey, but it defined the game. If you ignore that fiction (ex: Yars can eat anything, which figured VERY heavily in the original game. Does that chick look like she can bite through a spacebrick? No.) you have a very good chance of also discarding everything that made the original a classic.
  • d3v - November 18, 2010 8:25 a.m.

    So Atari beats Konami to the punch? Maybe this'll get Kojima to actually start making ZOE3.
  • CandiedJester - November 18, 2010 8:20 a.m.

    never heard of that game, but this looks kinda awesome.
  • sepirothpk - November 18, 2010 8:19 a.m.

    The original came a while before I was born, so I'm unfamiliar with it. But I've got to say, that short video looked amazing and might be one of the few titles I would download (since the internet here isn't the best)
  • TheVoid - November 18, 2010 7:25 a.m.

    Hate to say it, but I'm pretty sure Yar's Revenge was never an arcade game. Atari 2600 triple-A title? Absolutely - there was even a tie-in comic included, which kicked the whole "the box art will look better than the game" accepted norm up a notch. There was incredible hype, fanfare, critical acclaim, and all the fixin's of a certified console classic. But no arcade game, at least I'm pretty sure. As for the remake, why not? The old game has never really been rehashed in any way over the years, and the concept remains unique enough that a new build of the core mechanics might be pretty cool. After all, it was way more than just a shooter: it involved resource gathering, different threats with different counters, risk/reward considerations, timing, accuracy, and pulse-racing moments of "get me the fuck out of here" whenever that damn cannon would start spooling up. Back in the day that was A LOT to juggle for a console game, yet the graphics and control design kept it all fairly straightforward (excluding the weird "we ain't in Star Wars anymore" setting and aesthetic). It might actually come together nicely in terms of a fine downloadable game by today's standards. Now on to the hate: The protagonists weren't human-like at all. Humanoid, sure, but more humanoid-bug than anything. I was quite displeased to see the (yawn) human face emerge from the (boring) insect-like body armor mechy whatever. ZZZzzzzzz. In that regard, I feel an opportunity is being missed, which is a concern. If they can't get the source material right from one angle, who says they'll adhere to it for the rest? Oh please oh please oh please Atari - don't let Killspace pull a Michael Bay on this. Remember what made Yar's Revenge a classic in the first place: Unique gameplay that remains unique to this day. It's not one of a million other shooters for a reason! Stick to the blueprint! Amp it up and get fucking crazy but KEEP IT YAR'S REVENGE!
  • pr0tostar - November 18, 2010 7:13 a.m.

    Looks like Escaflone (anyone remember that anime?!) meets Zone of the Enders with a chick Raiden! Not familiar with the original, but the current scheme is eyecandy to me
  • Haikufrenzy - November 18, 2010 5:37 a.m.

    I know it's the norm to hate any remake announced immediately but I'm actually digging this concept. Yar's Revenge might of have a plot to begin with but it was kind've silly, so if your going to remake it, why not go all out with it. Not to mention that cut scene did look pretty good. Consider me interested in this.
  • shadowreaper72 - November 18, 2010 4:55 a.m.

    1st off I wish to say nice new video player i always had trouble with the previous one you guys used but this much better and faster. Now about the game, i was not born during that decade so i have no idea bout this game but the remake along with the anime look seems very promising to me.
  • Gahmah - November 18, 2010 4:40 a.m.

    Isn't this like a thing parodied by Mad TV about remakes and things or some comedian's thing, or like those college humor mindfield videos? But REAL? It's certainly out of left field, so much it's coming from the right. But, no judgements till I play it!
  • MrDandy - November 18, 2010 3:48 a.m.

    I like the idea a lot... Yar's Revenge was somehow made more intriguing simply because of the word "revenge" in the title. At the time Atari was really into expanding the game stories, packing comic books and even cutting promo albums! Fly Yar Warriors!
  • ventanger - November 18, 2010 3:34 a.m.

    Hey wait a sec... is that the new video player?! If it is, I like it.
  • Genericide - November 18, 2010 3:27 a.m.

    Now, I myself am too young to have fond memories of anything near the same decade as this game, so my opinion here might be a little skewed compared to some. But I have to simply ask, why? This game will no doubt be different from the 30 year old Atari game (not exactly a bad thing) in several aspects. If you want to make an old school shooter fine by me but I don't quite get the need to tack on the name of a largely unrelated Atari game relatively few people remember/care about.
  • Jacko415 - November 18, 2010 3:13 a.m.

    Looked like Princess Mononoke for a second haha
  • FalconMbuster - November 18, 2010 3:10 a.m.

    This... this has to be the weirdest thing ever. Yars Revenge... Crap even the roms are ancient.
  • NeoKef - November 18, 2010 2:49 a.m.

    I have watched original videos of Yars Revenge and I never understood it. Maybe this will explain how to play the game. Also, can we get a Centipede HD Remix or something of that nature?

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