Flashback — known as Flashback: Quest for Identity in the United States, a sci-fi platformer originally released in 1992 — is being remade by developer Paul Cuisset and published by Ubisoft later this year, the publisher announced at its Digital Days event in San Francisco.
Cuisset designed the original Flashback more than 20 years ago, and his new studio, VectorCell, is now working on the remake.
In an interview with Polygon, Ubisoft's Guillaume Da Costa Vieira said VectorCell approached the publisher asking to do a remake of the original because many fans had been asking about it. With the Ubisoft team being fans of the original game, Da Costa Vieira said they jumped at the opportunity.
"We wanted to stay true to the roots and to respect the original spirit of the game because, for us — the team and the fans — respecting the core value of the game was very important," he said. "At the same time, we looked at what we could do to improve the game."
Da Costa Vieira said the development team added features that either weren't possible in 1992 due to technology restrictions, or weren't known of until after players had given the developers feedback. One such feature is the new skill system, which allows players to earn points through leveling up and spend those points to improve skills like accuracy or stamina. It allows players to customize their character and play to their strengths and weaknesses.
The story has been given more depth, although the specifics were not divulged during the interview. Some more obvious changes have also been made, namely to the way the game looks and the aiming system.
"For example, in the old game, when you aim, it was either left or right," Da Costa Vieira said. "You can't do that now because it would be too old school. So now you can aim at 360 degrees. For us, it was a very important thing to fix because the goal here is to see what we can do with current technology to make Flashback even better."
Aside from these changes, he said the core of Flashback has been left alone, so that those who have previously experienced it can revisit a game they played and loved, and new players can access a piece of gaming history and experience what Flashback has to offer.
Flashback is coming to Xbox Live and PlayStation Network in 2013.