So, I’ve got a hypothetical question for y’all: if you could remake an old game, without worrying about things like budget, or permissions, etc., what would it be?
In my case, I would love to see a remake of Wild Arms 3. For those unfamiliar with the Wild Arms games (you heathens 😛 ), they were a series of Western-themed JRPGs from the early Playstation era; WA3 was the first for the PS2. By the way, when I say “Western-themed” I mean “Wild West-themed”; gun-toting protagonists drifting through a desert wasteland, surviving from day to day, and trying to prevent the inevitable decay of the world. OK, that last point isn’t a traditional Western trope, but Wild Arms also has deep Sci-fi roots as well, beneath the surface fantasy stuff, so it fits really well, somehow. Oh, and the fusion produced some absolutely wonderful BGM. So there’s that. 😀
By the way, I assume that if you haven’t played the game, you’re not going to, so beware of unmarked spoilers. (On the other hand, I just checked, and its available on PSN for PS4, for 15 bucks. I suddenly have 100% more motivation to get my PS4 registered to my account.) 😉
Anyway. The reason I think WA3 deserves a remake, would first of all be the characters. Somebody must have lost the JRPG rulebook when they wrote this one, because the main focus character is a young girl, who behaves like a young girl, and is not sexualized in appearance in the slightest. Furthermore, the three men who join her party are not love interests, but more like an actual family: there’s a responsible father figure (who, probably not by coincidence, is actually a father), a reckless older brother figure (who similarly is actually an older brother), and a
tsundere grumpy younger brother (who is slightly more complicated, but in essence is the MCs younger brother. Sort of.) Actually, the closest thing to a love interest is a flamboyant rival girl, as I recall…and even that is really a matter of implication, really. The plot really didn’t put any effort into shoehorning extraneous romance in, another point I appreciate. 😉
Speaking of the plot — well, I don’t even know where to start, really. This game is all about serial escalation, from the four characters meeting over a simple misunderstanding, to reluctantly partying to complete a simple job, to realizing that sleazy guy you keep fighting is actually working for a group trying to control the world, to learning said group was actually trying to resurrect an ancient demonic invader (which they succeed in doing), to fighting off said demon (as well as the earlier sleazy guy who has gained demonic power), until you reach the point where you realize that literally everything that has happened so far, including your own party’s actions, was due to the manipulation of an encroaching sentient dimension (which, incidentally, generally takes the form of a young girl (loli)), and when you defeat said dimension in a final boss fight, the organization which worshiped her (who weren’t bad people, btw) put a bounty on your head for killing their spiritual leader (not actually your fault). Yeah, I can’t remember the last time I played a plot this convoluted…
Well, as to what I would remake, setting aside obvious stuff like graphics, I’d say the weakest point was the battle system. It wasn’t horrible, but… Well, the characters had customizable weapons and could have various magics equipped to them, but it wasn’t really possible to modify them enough to change their roles, meaning that each one had basically one “correct” upgrade path, making the flexibility meaningless. If you follow me. Well, and battle was completely turn based, in a weird way; again, it wasn’t bad, but I think a modern-ish action RPG system would be a lot more thematic, considering the whole “gunslinger” bit. Oh, and the characters and monsters would run randomly around the battlefield, which seems like it would be better than standing in a line facing each other, but in practice only looked stupid. Sadly. 😛
Other than that, there were quite a few secrets and subquests which were basically impossible without knowing exactly how to do them, the final boss was staggeringly difficult if you weren’t completely prepared for her (she had 10 freaking forms, for Chaos’ sake), the various alternate battle systems (i.e. sandship and dragonship fights) were limited in scope, and the fixed 8-angle camera was a bit annoying. Lots of small stuff, you know?
I still want to play the game again. PSN, here I come! 😀
Anyway, like I asked at the beginning, what game would you like to see a remake of? You don’t have to go into detail, I’m just interested. 😉