AuthorTopic: Flashback HD & The terrible truth of remakes  (Read 35370 times)

Offline Helm

  • Moderator
  • 0110
  • *
  • Posts: 5159
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile
    • Asides-Bsides

Re: Flashback HD & The terrible truth of remakes

Reply #10 on: January 23, 2013, 01:57:59 pm
It is really startling, indeed. Flashback is one of my favourite games and the jungles of titan tileset once looked to me to be impossible to reach in terms of pixel quality and now I see sloppy stuff everywhere. It doesn't diminish the aesthetic result too much, but it's not super-well pixelled.

Offline Arne

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 431
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Panties.
    • View Profile
    • AndroidArts

Re: Flashback HD & The terrible truth of remakes

Reply #11 on: January 23, 2013, 03:10:59 pm
Kind of sad to see that no one took the opportunity to play with those Giger'esque jungle organics. I actually didn't like the game graphically back in the day because it was a gritty departure from Another World's abstract flatness. Looks pretty neat when I see it now though, as a standalone expression.

But, you, OP, picked a flashback screenshot with uneven pixel scaling, and then had the gall :P to complain about the Pokémon sprites, which, mind, are animated real-time from chopped up pieces by the engine, not sloppily by hand, if anyone thought that. It's a cheap way to liven things up and sometimes just having a feature at all is more important than the fidelity, which is subject to diminishing returns.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2013, 03:19:36 pm by Arne »

Offline ptoing

  • 0101
  • ****
  • Posts: 3063
  • Karma: +0/-0
  • variegated quadrangle arranger
    • the_ptoing
    • http://pixeljoint.com/p/2191.htm
    • View Profile
    • Perpetually inactive website

Re: Flashback HD & The terrible truth of remakes

Reply #12 on: January 23, 2013, 03:43:46 pm
Another World and Flashback have got nothing to do with each other, apart from the same Publishers. It was totally different devs (seeing as AW was more or less done by Eric Chahi himself).
There are no ugly colours, only ugly combinations of colours.

Offline Conzeit

  • 0100
  • ***
  • Posts: 1448
  • Karma: +3/-0
  • Camus
    • conzeit
    • View Profile
    • CONZEIT

Re: Flashback HD & The terrible truth of remakes

Reply #13 on: January 23, 2013, 04:10:31 pm
wow. I just read that the original creator of Flashback may be in charge of the company Vector Cell which is making "Flashback Origins" so this whole mess is more of a George Lucas thing where the creator ruins his own franchise by remaking it and 'not getting it'

Honestly, I think that 2D graphics just arent the focus for quality anymore, when they're done it's mostly for nostalgia value. I think part of it may be because 3D allows for animating on the fly and is more conducive to interactivity, so that limits gameplay options.

Super Ghouls n Ghosts and Bionic Commando Rearmed and the upcoming Oddworld Oddyssey New 'n Tasy are good examples of 2D games updated each in their own way, but they were made in 3D, not 2D.

Not to say I wouldnt love to see some kind of Punchout styled game with art worthy of the lastest shonen anime craze, but there's just a limited amount of interactions for which 2D art is really the highest quality option.


Lately I've been thinking the natural media that most reasembles the thinking of pixelart is linocut, I was just struck by the work of  Sherrie York, and while reading this it just struck me how flashbackish the mood is on this particular piece

Now the idea of drawing hi tech and dudes shooting lasers  instead her usual birds wouldnt have appealed to Sherrie, but the idea of linocut concept art for pixelart remakes still seems quite appealing
« Last Edit: January 23, 2013, 04:27:39 pm by Conceit »

Offline Arne

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 431
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Panties.
    • View Profile
    • AndroidArts

Re: Flashback HD & The terrible truth of remakes

Reply #14 on: January 23, 2013, 04:14:26 pm
That's peculiar. I recall it being touted as a sequel, perhaps because of the shared mechanics, but back then there wasn't a whole lot of information sources and I haven't thought of it since. Oh well. Looks like there was an actual sequel called Heart of the Alien though (made without Chahi's involvement) (Edit: Oh lord, it looks painful to play).
« Last Edit: January 23, 2013, 04:25:32 pm by Arne »

Offline ptoing

  • 0101
  • ****
  • Posts: 3063
  • Karma: +0/-0
  • variegated quadrangle arranger
    • the_ptoing
    • http://pixeljoint.com/p/2191.htm
    • View Profile
    • Perpetually inactive website

Re: Flashback HD & The terrible truth of remakes

Reply #15 on: January 23, 2013, 04:26:16 pm
Yep, Heart of the Alien is pretty meh tho.

Flashback also has a sequel, called Fade to Black, which is lowpoly 3D with super low res textures in places. Not that great either.
There are no ugly colours, only ugly combinations of colours.

Offline Ymedron

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 306
  • Karma: +0/-0
  • All draw and no paint!
    • View Profile
    • My Deviantart account

Re: Flashback HD & The terrible truth of remakes

Reply #16 on: January 23, 2013, 04:37:50 pm
You blew my mind with the Pokemon thing, I've seen the blatant rotation in them but I had never consciously put it in the correct context. (a multimillion company producing a game for one of its most successful IPs) Maybe because I've never really played the latest Pokemon games.

Or maybe because of what Ymedron said: I only really played the first and second generations, and when Crystal Version came around, I was amazed and glad that they had taken the time to animate the 200-something pokemon (not to mention there wasn't any fugly rotation). Back then I thought of it as a boon, a very neat extra that took a lot of work that wasn't necessary. "Poor guys, working unnecesarily hard to please my eyes even further".

But that was back in the second generation. The producers don't deserve any "pity" anymore, nowadays. Pokemon hauls in the cash, even though it is now one of the most stale game series EVER (even more so than the zeldas or the 2d marios, which coincidentally also are incredibly lucrative). If they're gonna keep feeding consumers with the same old stuff, the least they could do is use some of their millions to make it pretty.

Well, seeing how they made the jump to 3d in their upcoming games, it seems they are in fact doing this? Im not sure about the costs of 2d vs 3d animation.
Also my art tumblr: ymedronart.tumblr.com

Offline yrizoud

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 330
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile

Re: Flashback HD & The terrible truth of remakes

Reply #17 on: January 23, 2013, 04:57:34 pm
Older games were typically made by small teams, often one graphist for the whole ingame stuff. Either he was bad and the game was promptly forgotten, or he was good and everything was consistently good. (What's the word? art direction?)

Offline tim

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 240
  • Karma: +2/-0
  • Founder of Odd Tales - Art Director
    • View Profile
    • Tim Soret - Showreel

Re: Flashback HD & The terrible truth of remakes

Reply #18 on: January 23, 2013, 04:59:09 pm
Sorry guys. I know my first post yesterday may have sounded childish and angry.

It's just that the original creator is destroying is own IP, and this simple screen is a compilation of all the "best practices" I dislike in videogames since a few years… This is why on this generation (PS3 & Xbox) you don't have a lot of games you will remind deeply : they are generic. You can almost replace assets from one game another. Try to do this on 2D games. No. They all looked unique. They all left a stamp in our visual memory.

Here on pixelation, we are some of the last guys who cares about this medium and want to share the secrets of making quality pixels. We are like these old guys whose their jobs disappeared slowly. I just wanted to… I don't know. Make people wake up. I'm living in Paris as an Art Director, I'm even wondering if I shouldn't go to Vectorcell (which is in France) to be hired as an art director and try to save this remake.

About Rayman : You are true, the game looks extremely smooth & good. I just used it as a proof of today's laziness. Nobody wants to draw frames tediously. Everybody want the shortest path to achieve the "ok it looks good it's enough". This is the same for 2D Dreamworks / Disney Movies. I rewatched The Prince of Egypt a few days ago, and the animation is astounding. You can feel the volumes, the weight, the physics, the intention of each character, each move, this is incredible. This is the same for some good old 2D anime like Akira or Ghost in the shell. I'm sad we don't have anything like this today. There is only a few japanese like Ghibli because these people are hard worker. But overall, the production shrank so much it's really depressing.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2013, 05:39:41 pm by tim »
Founder of Odd Tales
Art Director - Game Director - Game designer - Motion designer

Offline Seiseki

  • 0011
  • **
  • Posts: 915
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Starmancer
    • OminuxGames
    • http://pixeljoint.com/p/35207.htm
    • StarmancerGame
    • View Profile
    • Starmancer Patreon

Re: Flashback HD & The terrible truth of remakes

Reply #19 on: January 23, 2013, 05:13:03 pm
I think it's important to consider that the only reason these games were pixel art in the first place was because of technical limitations.
The games creator probably had a different image of the game all along and as such, he can't see how problematic it is to remake the game in this fashion.
That's no excuse for doing a poor job though, this looks very uninspired and dull. There's nothing unique or special about it at all.
And I really don't think the game benefits from having depth, which just makes it confusing and unclear when it comes to gameplay.

The thing that bothers me the most with sonic 4 is how detailed the backgrounds are.. It looks so strange and off.

And if you really care about this game, you should mail the current studio with a link to this thread.
This forum is filled with industry professionals and high level artists, so they would do well in listening to the critique.

Edit: The saddest thing is how people undervalue good and atmospheric 2D art. It makes me about as angry as you Tim, because you can do fantastic things with 2D but everyone is so obsessed with 3D that no one tries to do innovative technical things with 2D, like dynamic shadows in 2D or bump mapping which were first used by indie developers.

As for art direction - look at Borderlands, their original art direction was a typical dull realistic 3D style and they realized that their concept art looked much better than their game. So they started making the game just like their concept art.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2013, 05:25:35 pm by Seiseki »