Masters of the Remaster: Inside Bluepoint Games

Masters of the Remaster: Inside Bluepoint Games

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Bluepoint Games is a studio identified for his or her constantly superb ends up in the area of remastering, refurbishing, and remaking vintage video games.

So, you’d be expecting their headquarters to be bit flashier than the outwardly unremarkable construction they proportion in Austin, Texas. Their unassuming workspace doubles as an analogy for the studio itself: a gaggle extra keen about their paintings than status and popularity.

Bluepoint GamesBluepoint Games

The front to Bluepoint is proudly decorated with souvenirs from all of the initiatives the staff has labored on through the years.

Bluepoint GamesBluepoint Games

Watch the video on the height of this put up, captured right through a up to date travel to Bluepoint Games, for a unprecedented peek within the studio at the back of one of the trade’s maximum well-regarded remasters.

Bluepoint has grown right into a staff of a couple of dozen staff, but it surely all started with two folks. Marco Thrush, now president of the corporate, and Andy O’Neil, the studio’s present vice-president. Marco and Andy constructed the still-in-operation Bluepoint Engine, and labored in combination to create Blast Factor, which introduced along PlayStation Network in 2006.

Bluepoint is in a singular place: having led the remastering procedure for such a lot of mythical titles, the studio has had a lot of alternatives to poke across the internal workings of one of the maximum technically spectacular studies from their respective generations. I requested Peter Dalton, the technical director on PS4’s Shadow of the Colossus, how he and the staff took good thing about those alternatives.

“We’ve undoubtedly discovered from every of them,” Peter explains. “From the unique God of War sequence and bringing that to PS3, and seeing how they solved positive issues, to running with Naughty Dog’s generation for Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection.

Bluepoint’s artwork director, Mark Skelton, has identical appreciate for the artists whose paintings he’s now answerable for recreating. “It’s superb what they did with what they’d. There are such a lot of tips and such a lot of distinctive, groundbreaking issues that they did in that recreation that I’ve by no means noticed since or earlier than that.”

Bluepoint Games Art Director - Mark SkeltonBluepoint Games President - Marco Thrush

Bluepoint Games Studio Producer - Randall LoweBluepoint Games Technical Director - Peter Dalton

Clockwise from top-left: Art Director Mark Skelton, Studio President Marco Thrush, Technical Director Peter Dalton, Studio Producer Randall Lowe

When remastering a vintage, it will have to be tempting to mend each mistake, oversight, or inconsistency you may to find. But the place does one draw the road? Skelton stocks a geographical instance from Shadow of the Colossus:

“So one of the crucial spaces is more or less wooded… I spotted — this is more or less humorous — that it used to be a twin waterfall space. And the twin waterfalls had a U-shaped segment that hooked up them, which to me made completely no sense. Where’s the water coming from?

“Things like that we talked via and made positive that if we did make adjustments to it, that it didn’t have large ramifications, visually or playwise. So what we made up our minds to do used to be attach it to every other connection that used to be more or less a mountain waterfall, which fed that waterfall, which in flip fed the ones two.

“To me, adjustments like that have been vital. It makes extra sense, and it used to be possibly simply an oversight at first of the primary one. Stuff like that I don’t have an issue converting. You know, stuff that makes folks scratch their heads and cross why?

Bluepoint Games

One advantage of running at Bluepoint: Everyone will get two displays.

The extra you communicate to the folks at Bluepoint, the extra you know that this obsessive consideration to element is core to the studio’s ethos. Occupying a nook of the studio’s floorplan is a customized rack of 4 large TVs, every representing one of the crucial marketplace’s hottest units in a given worth vary. They cord PS4 dev kits to this rig to peer the general product the way in which avid gamers will see it.

Bluepoint Games

Studio Producer Randall Lowe surveys Shadow of the Colossus’ central box on a variety of common TV panels

If there’s one issue that obviously drives Bluepoint, it’s the will to do proper through lovers — to do justice to the legacy of each recreation they make a selection to rebuild or remaster.

“To us, making the sport the way in which you commit it to memory is an important challenge that we have got, without reference to the whole thing else,” explains Randall Lowe, one of the crucial testers at the unique PS2 unencumber of Shadow of the Colossus, and now a manufacturer at the 2018 PS4 model. “We want to be sure that the sport you’re taking part in now appears like the item that you simply performed prior to now. If we don’t hit the ones notes, then we failed in what we have been getting down to do.”

Bluepoint Games

The Bluepoint kitchen has a really perfect view of the Pennybacker Bridge, in addition to the Colorado River beneath.

Studio president Marco Thrush elaborates: “The video games we paintings on, we hand-pick them — we most often have a lot of possible choices, and we get to select those we care maximum about or that we really consider the participant will experience maximum when they get rereleased. So we all the time give the most productive we in all probability can on each unmarried name we paintings on. I’m hoping it displays in spite of everything outcome.”

Shadow of the Colossus launches February 6 on PS4, however within the interim, you’ll learn the way it runs on PS4 Pro, watch the sport’s opening collection, learn our hands-on impressions, watch an episode of PlayStation Underground recorded at Bluepoint Games, or peruse a chain of different SotC movies over at our YouTube channel. Phew!



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