I’ve been thinking about making a thread like this for a while now. It occurred to me that many of us here are hardware purists. I am to an extent but once we got into the 6th Generation (128-bit gen) I feel like all bets were off for me. Even to the point where I might say playing certain games might be better via emulation on a PC. But that isn’t what this thread is about.
It occurred to me that most of the games from the 6th gen had controls that were just awful for me. The most unforgivable was the camera. The era of up is down and left is right just drove me up the wall. This stupid camera system hamstrung me early on with FPS games where I couldn’t play them on a console because my muscle memory kept taking over (eventually I learned to correct this and now up is up etc).
Its funny to admit, but for me the awful camera and some of the QoL changes we have made over the past couple generations of games have made HD remasters or even official emulation the superior choice in a lot of cases. I could not play Shadow of the Colossus and once the remake dropped a month or so ago I fell in love with a game that I struggled with thanks to the awful camera and wonky controls. I wish the controls were even better now but I think the game’s intent is to make you struggle with the controls a bit for the sake of challenge.
I put 40+ hours into Final Fantasy 12 on the PS2/3 (bc) with no ability to change the camera controls. I hated even minute of walking around yet loved the game. At some point I got sick of controlling the game and quit. Now that the HD Remaster is out I can finally enjoy that game and as a bonus I get much improved visuals.
I also bought Rogue Galaxy, Mark of Kri & it’s sequel for PS4 and they fixed the camera controls and they did this with the Rachet & Clank games to boot. I still prefer the R&C series on PS3 as they actually did more than upscale it via emulation (but the main thing is, they fixed the camera controls and the wide screen support was excellent).
I also bought an XBOX One X and revisiting some of those early original XBOX games have been a lot of fun. Now I can play these games in 4K. I had so much fun playing Grabbed by the Ghoulies and I thought the visuals (except for the pre-rendered cut scenes) really looked great in 4K.
Speaking of 4K, I bought the Burnout Paradise Remaster on XBOX One and I am having such a blast and the game looks really good. I still think they could have tweaked the 360 code to update the visuals to 4K and had a similar result. Not all 360 games are getting the enhanced treatment but I really can’t wait for the Metal Gear Solid collection on XBOX 360 to come to XBOX One bc. I tried going back to it on PS2 a few months ago and I just couldn’t bring myself to want to play it too much.
Now some of you are ok with playing games from the 6th gen via the OSSC & Framemeister. I think its pretty good. The addition of the 2X to 480p and 4x to 480i does help. But I think in many cases, I am finding that I prefer playing these games on modern hardware. It really depends if the game camera is controlled by the player and if so, it lacks camera control options.
Now all that said. I hope this will be a place we can discuss the benefits and the short comings of these various ports. I didn’t go into the negatives but there are plenty to discuss but for the most part there are many games that are having a second life for me thanks to official emulation or remasters.