Killzone HD looks fantastic, Guerrilla had to perform ‘software archeology’
Different companies remaster games in their own style. Square Enix doesn’t even start development on it (FFX HD), Capcom butchers the remaster (Silent Hill HD), Bluepoint Games does a fantastic job on whatever they do (God of War HD), and then you have first-party studios like 343 Industries (Halo Anniversary) and Guerrilla Games (Killzone HD).
The Killzone HD remaster had a lot of work invested in it, but that’s what you expect from a technical powerhouse like Guerrilla Games. Killzone was originally a PS2 game which looked quite good for its time, and the PS3 version – which was announced recently – features quite a lot of improvements.
“I was asked to dig up the source code and the original assets for the game – things like models, textures and sounds. Guerrilla used a completely different versioning system in 2004, so we knew direct retrieval of the assets was going to be tricky. By comparison, obtaining the source code was slightly easier, because we found a copy in our current CVS,” senior Programmer Frank Compagner said.
“The biggest challenge we faced with regard to obtaining the assets was that Guerrilla’s whole way of working was different back then. The assets had been backed up to tape at one point, but that was almost eight years and two tape robots ago. So we needed an archaeologist, someone to dig into the depths of our backup archives and unearth whatever they could.
“It was quite an interesting challenge. The first issue we ran into was that we no longer had a machine to read most of the tapes. And the second issue was that the tapes were stored, uh, offsite… By which I mean, in a shoebox in the cellar of one of our IT support staff members, without a list of contents of any kind.”
I have never played Killzone on PS2, so this is quite refreshing to know that they have indeed worked so hard on the game.
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Via PS Blog.