Commandos 2 and Praetorians HD Remasters Have the Potential to Revive Series Interest
Commandos 2 - HD Remaster and Praetorians - HD Remaster spruce up old school RTS games for a new generation.
This E3 was quite good for fans of older strategy games. Not only was the curtain pulled back on the excellent looking Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition, but Kalypso Media pulled back the curtain on the previously confirmed remasters of classic strategy games Commandos 2: Men of Courage and Praetorians as well. After having checked out both of Kalypso’s remasters at E3 2019, they seem to be proper upgrades that will draw fans of the long-forgotten franchises back in while also introducing them to a whole new generation of RTS players.
While they lack the astounding additional improvements that something like Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition has, the fact that both games are becoming even more polished and are being brought up to snuff for current hardware is certainly commendable. The release of Commandos 2 – HD Remaster and Praetorians – HD Remaster later in 2019 will also get me excited for the eventual continuation of the series, which Kalypso Media is also promising is in the works.
Commandos 2: Men of Courage was first released for PC in 2001 and was beloved by fans back then.From what I saw in my hands-off demo, Commandos 2 – HD Remaster plans on keeping all of what made the original release great intact. Not much seems to be changing about the Commandos 2 you know and love in the remaster outside of the updated graphics and a few quality of life improvements. The biggest enhancements come in the from of a new UI and a better camera, which fix two of the biggest sore spots of the original release. Commandos 2 will still be the tough RTS that it was back in the day, but theses addictions should at least make playing a smoother experience.
Models look crisper than ever, though I didn’t get a great look at the remastered backgrounds as they weren’t ready for E3. If they match what the trailer shows though, they will be sure to provide Commondos 2 in the beautiful way many fans probably remember it. Commandos 2 – HD Remaster was the more robust of the two remasters and will likely draw in the most interest when it releases later this year. With this, Command and Conquer remasters, and a brand new Commandos on the way, the next few years look like they will be very good to fans of RTS games set in World War 2.
Praetorians – HD Remaster is a bit more cut and dry than the one for Commands 2: Men of Courage, but it still looks more polished than the original and features a few UI enhancements. While the game isn’t anything breathtaking by modern standards and even a little time consume, I am still charmed by its Roman setting and variety of units. Even though it may be a bit slower than many modern RTS fans may prefer, Praetorians excels when it comes to unit versatility and the emphasis on building.
In the RTS scene where the same mechanics and settings are often retreaded, Praetorians – HD Remaster should serve as a breath of fresh air. Praetorians – HD Remaster also exemplifies what these remasters are: welcome rivivals of old school RPGs. Even if they are not everyone’s cup of tea when it comes to control or difficulty because of how much Kalypso, Yippee, and Torus Games are not touching, these remasters are doing their job and helping to preserve and revive interest in two series that may have fallen to the wayside eternally otherwise.
Commandos 2 – HD Remaster and Praetorians 2 – HD Remaster are maintaining the RTS series just as players remember them, simply updating their looks and UI to be slightly more accommodating. Fans of both games will likely be happy to see the games return in this form and Yippee Entertainment and Torus Games both seemed to have done a great job on their respective remasters. While some new players may be turned off by the old school elements, hopefully they do garner enough interest to ensure that both series will continue as Commandos and Praetorians have a lot of potential and deserve to. My only major question going into their release is how the games will play on console, as I was not able to test them on a controller.
Both Commandos 2 – HD Remaster and Praetorians – HD Remaster are in active development and will be released for PC, PS4, and Xbox One sometime in Q4 2019. Mac, Linux, Nintendo Switch, iOS, and Android ports for Commandos 2 – HD Remaster are also in the works. Kalypso Media does not yet know if the original games will be delisted from Steam once the remasters release.