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Weekend Hot Topic, part 1: Most wanted video game upgrades

Bloodborne – beginning to show its age (pic: Sony)

Readers discuss the games they’d most like to see get an upgrade on Xbox Series X and PS5, from old classics to new titles like Monster Hunter: World.

The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was inspired by reader Bacon and Microsoft’s ongoing efforts in terms of backwards compatibility and features like the FPS Boost. As such, he asked which retro video game would you most like to see get a boost from next gen emulation?

Many types of games were suggested, from the very recent to old PlayStation 1 era games, although the clear winner was Bloodborne, with many upset that it hasn’t already had a PlayStation 5 boost.

Classic choice
The obvious answer for this one is Bloodborne. One of the best games of the last generation, or indeed all time, and yet no attempt has been made to properly upgrade it for the PlayStation 5. Given the stories about Sony shutting down Japan Studio and all the people involved in Bloodborne leaving I have to imagine these two facts are probably connected.

I hate to say it but if this was a Microsoft game it’d be upgraded with 60fps gameplay and probably new resolution options. It could also do with a high-res texture pack and while that is a lot of effort for a game like this it’s completely worth it.

For decades games have been fairly throwaway entertainment, in the sense that once a new generation came out the last was pretty much made irrelevant. But that’s not really the case now and we really need to think how we preserve classic games more and make them easily playable on each new format. Or rather Sony do, as Microsoft already seem to have the concept sorted.

Obvious update
It’s pretty obvious that Naughty Dog are working on a PlayStation 5 version of The Last Of Us Part 2 with improved textures, etc. but they only really need to add 60fps (or 120 if they make an extra effort). It’d encourage another playthrough of The Last Of Us Part 2 if they bumped up the frame rate.

I’ve just finished Days Gone which, avoiding a talk on the wearisome Rockstar mission structure plus weak characters and story, had the highly entertaining horde assaults. Being chased down by a ravenous bunch of zombies with a solid 60fps was great fun. It’s amazing how much the extra 30 improves the feel of a game world. I turned off ray-tracing in Control solely for the 60fps mode.

The game that most needs a boost is Bloodborne. It’s one of the best games ever made that sadly is starting to show it age. That art design is still utterly magnificent though.

The old days
Monster Hunter: World would be my choice of more recent games as while it’s got performance options they all involve some pretty big compromises that I’d rather not have to deal with. I’m generally against performance options on a console anyway, but when they’re a choice between a choppy frame rate and good graphics or the reverse it really puts me off before I’ve even started a game.

In terms of older games I’d love to see a Killzone remaster trilogy. The first two games looked great at the time but they ran like a dog and a first person boost and extra trimmings would be great in my book. I’d even pay a small fee for it, £5 or so, which to me would be much more tempting than paying for a remaster collection like the old days.

E-mail your comments to: gamecentral@metro.co.uk

‘Cause it deserves it
Just Cause 3 would be great if they upgraded. I haven’t got an Xbox Series X, so I’m not sure if that’s a thing on there, but I love that game (especially compared to others in the series) and yet it barely runs properly on consoles. It almost made me buy a PC, especially for the mods, but if this and other games like it were getting automatic upgrades on the next gen machines then that would make a big difference to me.

People say they don’t care about frame rate but they sure do care about slow down and frame tearing and all the other problems that we’ve all quickly forgotten about over the course of the last gen. Go back to those old games though and it all comes flooding back, and it’s not pretty.

I believe any game with an unlocked frame rate is easy to do too, so I really don’t see a reason for Sony to not at least put some effort into it, especially as it’s become a hot button topic lately.

Pig out
Quite a lot of games come to mind, such as MotorStorm, Buffy, Ready 2 Rumble Boxing, Ridge Racer, Speed Freaks, Silent Hill, Resident Evil – Code: Veronica to name but a few.

However, the one which I thought of straight away is Hogs of War on the PS1. I have been hoping for a remaster of this for years! There has been talk of one before but sadly nothing has happened. What would I want in a remastered version? Well, apart from improved graphics.

A more interactive landscape with destructible buildings, new characters, weapons, and vehicles. A new single-player mission mode. Online would be a must and I think it would work really well. One thing which must stay from the original is the hilarious one-liners from the legendary Rik Mayall!

Over the years I have donated or sold most of my PlayStation 1, 2, and 3 games. Hogs Of War though is one I haven’t been able to part with even though I don’t play it anymore!
Tony–1975 (PSN ID)

Maintaining the classics
The most obvious one for me is Zelda: Ocarina Of Time. Play it now on the N64 and it’s like a slideshow the frame rate is so slow. It is better on the 3DS remake, as is Majora’s Mask, but… that’s on the 3DS and that’s hardly a beast of a machine either.

What I’d love to see is a full remake with modern graphics but the same art style as the original, but I’d settle for just a remaster that was able to sort out the frame rate and resolution. It’s crazy how many classic games are all but unplayable nowadays, either in terms of performance or being able to buy it.

Final Fantasy 7 Remake might have managed to get a big budget remake but few other games are as lucky and it’s a shame. Sequels often don’t do much to justify their existence but I feel remakes almost always do, despite having a reputation for being a lazier option for publishers. ‘Make something new!’ shout some people, before buying Call Of Duty 59 and ignoring the fact that some of the most famous video games in history are barely playable by normal means.

Improvement at last
I believe this is already happening but Subnautica could really do with a boost as it really doesn’t run very well on PlayStation 4. A lot of PC ports are like that and I’m curious to see if the next gen consoles will close that gap or if it’ll just stay the same size forever – the benefit of spending the extra money on a PC perhaps.

I’m just glad that 60fps has finally become a thing to brag about in the next gen, which means it’s become a priority at last. It’s infuriating to me that such an important thing has been ignored for so long.

Instant upgrade
If you go back and play an old PlayStation 1 game today you really will be shocked at the low frame rate and shocking load times. We quickly forget what we used to put up with, at a time when hitting 30fps was considered good.

Fast action games like WipEout are full of warping textures and broken collision detection to keep the speed up and slower games, like Final Fantasy 8 run at 15fps. 15! I didn’t think that was even possible until I looked it up. But it was common at the time, even Zelda: Ocarina Of Time on the more powerful N64 rarely pushed 25fps most of the time.

I really hope that Microsoft’s push for backwards compatibility features becomes a standard for everyone because if you own a game I very much feel you should just be able to load it up on the newest version of a console and play it with every new feature it’s got. Or at least the obvious stuff like higher resolution and faster frame rate/no slowdown.

Unfortunately that’s not the standard though and Sony seems to be too worried that if you’re busy playing old games you’re not buying new ones, which is what their business relies on. They’ve been outmanoeuvred on that one though, by Microsoft, so we’ll see how they respond in the future.

E-mail your comments to: gamecentral@metro.co.uk

The small print
New Inbox updates appear every weekday morning, with special Hot Topic Inboxes at the weekend. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length and content.

You can also submit your own 500 to 600-word Reader’s Feature at any time, which if used will be shown in the next available weekend slot.

You can also leave your comments below and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter.

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