Destroy All Humans Does a Good Job of Bringing the Classic to Modern Platforms
At E3 2019, I got the chance to check out the new Destroy All Humans remake and it looks like it'll be perfect for fans of the original game.
I’ll be honest, I didn’t think I’d ever be talking about Destroy All Humans in 2019. While the series isn’t exactly near and dear to my heart, I certainly have a ton of memories going over to my friend’s house and watching him play both the original and its sequel for hours upon hours. Whether or not you played it, there’s no doubt in my mind that at least the original is a classic from the PlayStation 2 and Xbox era of games.
Now, THQ Nordic, the successor to Destroy All Humans’ original publisher, has revealed that it and Black Forest Games are remaking the game almost entirely from the ground up for modern consoles. I got a chance to see and play the game at E3 2019 and while it’s certainly not for everyone, fans of the original are going to be very excited once they get their hands on this.
There are a couple of major things to note about this upcoming game. First off, it’s very important to clarify that Destroy All Humans is a full-blown remake, not just a remaster. During my time with the game, the developers stressed that they wanted to remake the memory that fans had playing the game in the early 2000s, but not exactly copy every single little thing the game had to offer. For example, in the original game, once the player fell in water, they immediately had to restart. While this wasn’t the only game to do this at the time, it’s certainly an outdated mechanic that can kill the game’s pacing.
Now, players will be given a temporary shield, which will drain the longer you stay on the water, in order to give players time to move away. This, of course, isn’t the only example of things that have changed from the original to the new version, but it should give you a good idea as to what Black Forest Games is trying to go for with this version of the game.
That being said, Destroy All Humans will still be familiar to everyone who loved the original. For starters, the remake actually uses the actual audio from the 2005 version. Of course, the audio has been edited and moved around slightly to give it a more natural feel, this is more apparent when you watch footage from the remake side-by-side with the original, but the audio itself is all the same.
Easily, the most impressive thing Black Forest Games has done with this remake is in the graphics department. The developer, of course, isn’t going for photorealism and is instead trying to make an HD version of the cartoon-style seen in the original game. This is another way that the developer is trying to invoke the memory of the game without just up-resing the game’s visuals like the PS2 for PS4 ports.
Everything seems to be made from scratch for modern hardware, which understandably looks fantastic next to the original version. When watching the remake for the first time, it did not hit me how many steps above the original its visuals were, but when I went back and watched gameplay from the game’s initial release, I realized just how much better the remake looks when compared to the original and that can’t go unmentioned. While I was able to see other things from Destroy All Humans during my demo like it’s controls and some in-development areas, these are the things that stood out the most when I saw the game.
To put it simply, if you enjoyed the original game years ago, you’ll almost certainly enjoy what Black Forest Games is cooking up. It feels like a love letter to the fans who grew up with the game. If not, well I’m not sure if there’s enough here to entice you. While there are some things that have been changed, I don’t think new audiences or people who didn’t like the series to begin with, will want to dive into the remake. That being said, I’m definitely looking forward to getting my hands on the game when it launches on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Windows PC next year.