PlayStation has just announced on their official blog that French development team Playmagic and publisher Microïds will be remaking–not remastering–the story-driven shooter XIII. The game is slated for a November 13th release and will be available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, PC, and Mac.
Here’s the first look at the game in XIII’s teaser trailer.
XIII is a bit of a cult title. Ubisoft originally debuted XIII in 2003 and made it available on PlayStation 2, Gamecube, Xbox, and PC. In it, you play as the most wanted man in the United States, on a mission to find out who he is. The game garnered a lot of press coverage, but was met with a positive but not outstanding critical reception. The general consensus is that the game’s level design gets boring and the AI isn’t very bright, but it looks great the entire time you’re playing it. XIII is undeniably cool, with vibrant cel-shaded graphics and a star-studded voice acting cast, including early 2000’s juggernaut David Duchovny and the late Adam West.
Constraints of technology may have forced the original team working on XIII to work with what was possible, but sixteen years later it’s exciting to see what kind of proper treatment this very innovative and stylistic vision can get in terms of its core gameplay. An HD remaster of the game would have probably satisfied a lot of fans of this title, as the 2003 graphics still look phenomenal today. A full and successful overhaul of the game’s mechanics and systems will really appeal to those who remember the game fondly, those who missed out the first time, and anyone looking for a vibrant FPS with a strong narrative.
Writing for PlayStation’s blog, Microïd’s Head of Production François Coulon shared some early details about the XIII remake project.
The idea for this remake idea came naturally, as we felt this unique kind of story-driven FPS experience was missing in today’s gaming landscape. Our goal is to bring XIII’s compelling story to a new generation of players with the best possible graphics and animation. The result will be nothing short of spectacular as we promise to celebrate the amazing work done on the original game.
No gameplay footage has been made available yet, but Coulon did share some concept art and an in-engine character model with PlayStation to get excited about. The team will be sticking with the striking cel-shaded art style, just boosted to make use of the full power of this generation’s hardware.
2003’s XIII had multiplayer for up to sixteen players, with a variety of modes, some exclusive to particular platforms. The focus seems to be on the story-telling element of the game for the remake team, and there was no mention of multiplayer mode from Coulon for now. More details are sure to come soon as the game approaches release.
XIII is based on the first five installments of very well known series of Belgian graphic novels, created by Jean Van Hamme and William Vance and first published in 1984. Coulon referred to the remake endeavor as a “real honor,” and surely these teams will be doing their best to make sure to capture everything that people love about the series and about the 2003 game, while bringing it in line with what the modern player expects from a tight, narrative-heavy FPS.