Hands-on with classic 90s game Grim Fandango, remastered for the PS4

Hands-on with classic 90s game Grim Fandango, remastered for the PS4

Among all the new games revealed at the E3 show this year, one of the titles I’m most excited about is over 15 years old. Sony has secured a remastered version of Grim Fandango, a wacky adventure game from LucasArts and Tim Schafer, for the PS4 and PS Vita.

We got an early look at a small part of the game at a Sony preview event this week. The remastering process is still ongoing, so the graphics I saw are far from final, but they do give a sense of what Double Fine has planned for the game.

The original artwork for Grim Fandango was drawn at a higher resolution and then compressed for the PC, so, even on the PS4’s original mode, the game will look better than what you played through long ago (assuming you’re old enough to remember that). If you want better visuals, you can turn on Remastered control in the settings.

Original mode
Original mode

In the opening scene of the game that we played, only protagonist Manny himself and a deck of cards got the full remastered treatment. The background stayed the same, though Double Fine does plan to redo some aspects of the background art. The new items do look a bit out of place, but some of that will improve as development progresses. Even remastered, the game will still have a decidedly retro feel to it, which should be a good thing.

Remastered mode
Remastered mode

Grim Fandango Remastered will also include new lighting and other rendering effects. The studio is in the middle of re-recording the soundtrack, replacing some samples with orchestral parts.

Schafer and team have added director’s commentary to the game. I’m not usually one for a commentary track, but it’s a nice touch here. In certain areas of the game, you can press L1 to activate the commentary and listen to the developers reminisce about the making of the game.

If you don’t have a PS4 or PS Vita, don’t worry. The game is also coming to the PC, Mac and Linux.

Grim Fandango’s such a classic, that many of us would have bought it even if it came with its original looks and visuals. The remastered visuals, audio and extra commentary are a bonus. There’s no word yet on when the game will come out, but I’ve already waited over 10 years, so another one doesn’t seem like much of a problem.

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