It seems that with each new release of hardware in the console and hand held worlds we see re-releases of retro games. Whether these are compilations of classics or single releases themselves. This has been going on since the first follow up console was released in the 1980’s. Companies have been working to monetize past efforts at every opportunity. Now with the console itself becoming more like a PC we are seeing more effort being put into the digital store that powers the platform than physical releases. This gives most console gamers (that are not Nintendo fans) a chance to purchase most games in one generation of consoles and conceivably still be able to play it on the next. Sony has done this with their PSOne Classics which were playable on PS3, PS4, PSP and the PS Vita after a single purchase. This is far from the norm though. Are we reaching a point of oversaturation with retro gaming re-releases?
Take the Mega Man games for instance. Started in 1988 on the Nintendo Entertainment System, we saw six releases on that platform. Then we had a handful on the Super Nintendo, Sony Playstation and newer platforms. Officially there are 10 games in the series. That is not counting the X series which has eight releases of its own. Then there is the hand held Mega Man Zero series which represents another 4 releases. Total, over 20 games in the 2D side scrolling series. The last release being around 2010 on the Playstation, Xbox and WiiWare platforms. 6 years ago.
The first re-release in the Mega Man series occurred with Mega Man: The Wiley Wars on the Sega Genesis (exclusive in the USA on the defunct Sega Channel). This was similar to the Super Mario All-Stars release Nintendo did for Super Nintendo where the graphics were upgraded a bit but the gameplay was not touched all that much.
The next re-release we would see in the Mega Man series would be in 1999 when Capcom released the original six NES games, with enhanced graphics and other niceties on the Playstation 2 (Japan only). Then in 2004 we got Mega Man Anniversary Collection for Gamecube, Playstation 2 and Xbox which was straight ports with very little extra. Mega Man X and Zero both received similar compilation releases. More recently we had Mega Man Legacy Collection which was the first six games re-released again.
Capcom has done similar things with Street Fighter II. So have other companies over the years such as SNK who are also well known for re-releasing games, though they have also released new takes on old franchises for modern platforms here and there.
Let’s hear your view! Do you enjoy these re-re-re-releases or are they too much? Would you rather see new games in these series than just the originals released again, with very little if any improvements?