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PokerFlat

Refactoring/refreshing a previous gen title for this gen

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Hello, Was playing Shadow of the Colossus recently and thought that it's a shame that it's a PS2 game. What I began considering was "Why not freshen this game and bring it to the PS3?" So what prevents this from happening? I'm not talking about a successor I'm talking about taking this game's source material, refactoring some, rewriting some, re-rendering some, etc. and making a release for the PS3. Is it the case that the developers get burned out on the same title and the stress and strain to get it released that it just makes them want to wash their hands of the entire project? Is it too much work for too little gain? Going from PS2 resolutions to PS3 1080p is just too much work? Porting from PS2 to PS3 is essentially a rewrite? None of the source material can be leveraged and therefore there's really nothing to be gained? i.e. it's an intractable proposal? If it's just not worth doing due to one or more of the above then, what a shame. If it is possible why isn't it done? Or is it done? Continuing on with the assumption that it's possible..... Could they charge say $20 instead of the full price of a current gen game?

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- The rendering hardware and APIs are very different, so you probably need to rewrite a big chunk of the rendering code.
- The artwork was designed for SD resolutions and PS2 triangle budgets, so much of it may need to be redone for higher resolutions and triangle budgets.
- Everyone who already owns the game will be unlikely to shell out $20 for an update that doesn't add anything but a little eye-candy, thus cutting your market by a huge amount.

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Original post by swiftcoder
- The rendering hardware and APIs are very different, so you probably need to rewrite a big chunk of the rendering code.
- The artwork was designed for SD resolutions and PS2 triangle budgets, so much of it may need to be redone for higher resolutions and triangle budgets.


Ok, that makes sense.

Quote:
Original post by swiftcoder
- Everyone who already owns the game will be unlikely to shell out $20 for an update that doesn't add anything but a little eye-candy, thus cutting your market by a huge amount.


Those that own it would not be the target. The target would be new PS3 owners that never had a chance to play it and won't get a chance since their PS3 won't do PS2.

Let me expand a little on the idea. What I was thinking was that maybe a couple of veteran developers get the toolchain set up and get a good workflow layout. Then hire less experienced developers and artists to "port" the game.

The goals would be:

o get a popular last-gen game onto the current gen quickly.
o low price to increase palatibility
o leverage some IP i.e. squeeze some more money out of the IP
o give some experience to those less experienced in game prod.
on a lower profile game
o maybe take some pressure off of the team creating the sequel
o possibly create a mid-market that would effectively obsolete
the previous gen game and provide some revenue for the current.

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Original post by PokerFlat
Was playing Shadow of the Colossus recently and thought that it's a shame that it's a PS2 game.

What I began considering was "Why not freshen this game and bring it to the PS3?"

So what prevents this from happening? I'm not talking about a successor I'm talking about taking this game's source material, refactoring some, rewriting some, re-rendering some, etc. and making a release for the PS3.

Is it the case that the developers get burned out on the same title and the stress and strain to get it released that it just makes them want to wash their hands of the entire project?

Not quite sure what you're suggesting/asking.
Are you asking why the publisher of the game doesn't port the game to the newer hardware?
Or are you saying you want to make this newer version?

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Original post by PokerFlat
Quote:
Original post by swiftcoder
- Everyone who already owns the game will be unlikely to shell out $20 for an update that doesn't add anything but a little eye-candy, thus cutting your market by a huge amount.
Those that own it would not be the target. The target would be new PS3 owners that never had a chance to play it and won't get a chance since their PS3 won't do PS2.
But ask yourself this - what percentage of the gamers that Shadows appeals to already played the PS2 game? It was a fairly popular game after launch, so it probably reached a good 30-40% of its intended audience.

So now you are talking about spending real money to produce a title that: a) only has 60% of the usual audience, b) can only be retailed for 1/3 the price, and c) is a port of an elderly game, which tend to sell less well than new games.

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Original post by PokerFlat
Those that own it would not be the target. The target would be new PS3 owners that never had a chance to play it and won't get a chance since their PS3 won't do PS2.
I presume you are aware that all early model PS3s *can* play PS2 games, and Shadows of the Colossus plays fine on these machines, including upscaling to 1080p.

In addition, it is widely rumoured that Team Ico is currently working on a sequel, this time for the PS3.

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Quote:
Original post by swiftcoder
Quote:
Original post by PokerFlat
Quote:
Original post by swiftcoder
- Everyone who already owns the game will be unlikely to shell out $20 for an update that doesn't add anything but a little eye-candy, thus cutting your market by a huge amount.
Those that own it would not be the target. The target would be new PS3 owners that never had a chance to play it and won't get a chance since their PS3 won't do PS2.
But ask yourself this - what percentage of the gamers that Shadows appeals to already played the PS2 game? It was a fairly popular game after launch, so it probably reached a good 30-40% of its intended audience.


All supposition. I have no idea what the penetration was either. I'm suggesting that the game was good enough and there are enough PS3 without PS2 BC that the market's big enough.

Quote:
Original post by swiftcoder

So now you are talking about spending real money to produce a title that: a) only has 60% of the usual audience, b) can only be retailed for 1/3 the price, and c) is a port of an elderly game, which tend to sell less well than new games.


Since you said "real money" I'm guessing that you think it will take a lot of money.
i.e. real money == a lot of money
How much money do you think? Since I know enough to know that a dollar amount
would be hard to come up with here. Maybe guess at a percentage of what it would take
to develop a completely new title.


The question, which I posited earlier, is "Can the IP be leveraged?"
Also implied in this whole notion "Is it cost-effective?"

So would the cost to "port" the game to the current gen be too high?

I think the fact that it doesn't happen may answer the question, but maybe not.
I haven't seen this topic discussed before so maybe it's just never been spread out and considered comprehensively enough.



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I think its simply to much work for what its worth re-factoring an old game for a newer platform.

They may aswell make a whole new game because like already stated.
hardware is entirely different.
artwork is design for PS2 poly budget, texture sizes.

however I do think that even though a ps2 game shadow of the colossus is a beautiful game it still looks nice, and the whole idea of the game is amazing, it gives me this feeling of solitude and I feel cold in the world, yet i just love coming back to it.

they are working on a new one anyways on ps3 which will feature better stuffs and be tailor made for the PS3 so for now.... enjoy the PS2 game and just wait for the new one on PS3 which will rock...

don't own a PS3 yet but a new SOTC or ICO would make me get one :)

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The PS2 and PS3 architectures are massively different, so the cost of such a "refresh" wouldn't be that much less than that of developing a new title, yet it would probably have to be sold for a lot less to be attractive to consumers. Also, SOTC, while well received critically, was a commercial flop. All in all, it doesn't make good business sense.

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Original post by PokerFlat:
>The question, which I posited earlier, is "Can the IP be leveraged?"

That question is easily answered, but that's not what you asked originally. Originally you wrote:

>>it's a shame that it's a PS2 game.
>>..."Why not freshen this game and bring it to the PS3?"
>>...what prevents this from happening?

And it wasn't clear (to me, at least), whether you were wondering about the publisher's reasoning, or if you were asking about the feasibility of someone other than the publisher doing it. Once I had clarity on the question, I was prepared to write an answer. (I don't like answering ambiguous questions, since the answer can often miss the target by a wide margin.)

>Also implied in this whole notion "Is it cost-effective?"

That implication was not self-evident in your original question. As another poster has written, the cost is most definitely the major factor, either for the publisher to fund it or for another party to license it and fund it.

>So would the cost to "port" the game to the current gen be too high?

"Too high" depends entirely on the projected sales. It's a matter of balancing the return on investment, the cost vs. the potential profit.

>I think the fact that it doesn't happen may answer the question...

It does imply one, to be sure. (^_^)

>I haven't seen this topic discussed before so maybe it's just never been spread out and considered comprehensively enough.

No, the question hasn't come up a lot before. It's an interesting issue, and I think the other posters' discussions of costs and sales potential have answered it well, in this instance.

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