Blade Runner: Enhanced Edition has just been released, and by all accounts it's a bad remaster that doesn't live up to both the movie series and the video game's enduring legacy. On the surface, this is surprising because this is from Nightdive Studios, which has successfully remastered classic games such as Shadow Man, Turok 1 and 2, and Blood. In reality, the quality of this remaster was almost expected. Why? Let's talk about it, shall we?
Why is Blade Runner: Enhanced Edition a bad remaster?
Basically, the source files for the original game are long gone, which makes Nightdive Studios' job a lot harder. The game itself was way ahead of its time when it released all the way back in 1997, and the way Westwood Studios developed the game made it almost impossible to do a regular remaster of.
Blade Runner: Enhanced Edition was supposed to make the game look, feel, and run better than the 15 FPS version we've had for 25 years now. Instead, it's a blurry mess that looks worse and has apparently had bugs that were fixed in the original 2019 re-release.
Players don't think it's good either, with it having a 1.7/5 rating on GOG and a 31% approval rating on Steam. While the original ScummVM re-release is bundled with the Enhanced Edition, right now Nightdive is receiving money for a game that's essentially a downgrade to the 1997 original.
2/4 Now @NightdiveStudio has released their "Enhanced" version. It is, by all accounts (https://t.co/GuOMWmBvnI), ugly and buggy, and offers no tangible benefits over ScummVM aside from very poor console support.— Thomas Fach-Pedersen (@madmoose_dk) June 23, 2022
They even forgot to credit me for the subtitles we let them use.
The game itself is still good, so if you're a console-only player or want to play with a controller you now can, but otherwise, if you want your Blade Runner fix, play the ScummVM version.
For more information on Blade Runner: Enhanced Edition, Nightdive Studios, and everything in between, stay tuned to TechRaptor.