These 7 games deserve Nvidia’s RTX remaster treatment

Nvidia recently revealed that Quake II RTX wasn’t a one-time thing, but rather it’s the start of something. The company is launching a program to remaster some beloved classics for RTX, and they’re even working on one already, not that they’ll tell us which one. Since they won’t say, it’s up to us to dream up what it might be. Here’s our list of 7 games that we’d love to see get the RTX treatment.

The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind (2002)

This choice is a bit left-of-center, but I think it could be interesting. Morrowind was the game that came right before Oblivion in the Elder Scrolls series. For many fans of the series, it’s the last “true” Elder Scrolls game, with the series’ focus shifting from deep quests to accessible worlds when it moved to consoles.

Morrowind, though, offers a sweeping, huge open-world space. The world of Morrowind is a strange one, especially compared to the games that followed. There are sunny coastlines and entire regions where ash blots out the sky.

Morrowind is weird and big. 17 years ago, it crushed PCs. Now, it feels like a fun experiment. On top of that, Morrowind has a vibrant modders’ community that would let people further update the look with new materials and almost certainly with further RTX tweaks.

Max Payne (2001)

Like Morrowind, Max Payne was once a graphical powerhouse and the game that put Finnish game studio Remedy on the map for weird storytelling and exhilarating gunplay. This game is significantly more focused and linear than some of the titles on our list, but it has its share of interesting visuals. It would be a great way to focus on interior light sources when indoors, and to experiment with snow in an RTX rendering environment when outside.

Bullet Time happens to be perfect for admiring great graphics, too. And maybe we can throw an RTX remaster of Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne in there for good measure.

Half-Life 2 (2004)

Half-Life 2 is the game that immediately jumped to mind when I started thinking about this. The game that launched Steam is on the very short list of truly iconic PC games. It features a variety of environments and environment sizes. It also uses the Source engine, and showing off how RTX performs in different engines isn’t a bad idea.

It’s also one of the few games from that era that I think you could simply drop a lighting refresh into and get people thinking about spending hundreds of dollars on a new graphics card just to play it.

Bioshock (2008)

And then there’s BioShock. This is the newest game on the list by a bit, but it might be the one that holds up the best of these, and even from its slightly-more-contemporary peers. BioShock was a game filled with incredible environmental art that looks great.

The underwater setting, though, feels like a perfect pick for RTX. You get the smaller space of an indoor environment mixed with all kinds of water mixed in. Some to play with reflections, others to filter lighting through. BioShock on RTX might be my personal most-wanted on this list.

Far Cry (2004)

The first of two “Cry” games on this list, Far Cry was the first “Cry” game made by Crytek. It was ambitious at the time, too, putting in place all the pieces we expect from a Far Cry game even today. A displaced guy with a gun in enemy territory, slowly trying to take it back. Wild environments to sneak around in and vehicles to crash around in.

At the time, this game had absolutely massive draw-distances that you could peep through a pair of binoculars. With the jungle setting, you have a single source of global illumination, but countless leaves and water sources to filter it through.

Crysis (2007)

I feel like I shouldn’t have to explain this one.

No One Live Forever (2000)

And finally, I’d love to see No One Lives Forever. At the very least just because the internet would lose its collective mind if Nvidia decided to figure out the licensing part. Nvidia didn’t technically license Quake II for RTX so much as make a wrapper for it, but maybe a powerhouse company like them could figure out the licensing hell that No One Lives Forever has been stuck inside since the game released almost two decades ago.

But that’s just 7 games out of hundreds of old games. What did we miss from the 3D era?

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glen winstein
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glen winstein

bully and manhunt

W W
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W W

Crysis with the RTX treatment? It’ll be 2082 before a computer wdluo be able to get over 30 fps.

Paul Butler
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Paul Butler

Neverwinter Nights

jihadjoe
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jihadjoe

IMO RTX is gonna be even better for those moody games where the action isn’t as fast. Stuff like Resident Evil or Alan Wake would be awesome with it.

tmanini
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tmanini

DOOM3 gets my vote

LoneWolf15
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LoneWolf15

Agreed.

roastedtarmac
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roastedtarmac

The most obvious choices IMHO are sneakers (particularly in low lighting):
Theif (any in the series)
Deus Ex (The original would be best here)
Far Cry (The original would be best here)

There are also games with poor lighting effects and baked in shadow textures:
Jedi Outcast
Jedi Academy

Other games that RTX features would improve that I’d like to see include:
Stalker (any in the series but start with Shadows of Chernobyl)
Knights of the Old Republic

JustAnEngineer
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JustAnEngineer
JustAnEngineer
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JustAnEngineer

NVidia responded by ray-tracing Minecraft.
https://hothardware.com/news/minecraft-geforce-rtx-2060-nvidia

doomguy64
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doomguy64

They didn’t just “ray-trace” Minecraft. Nvidia bought out Minecraft’s official HD mod with exclusive rights for RTX, and that’s how they’re doing most of these other projects. Minecraft mods can at least be alternativized by the community like the SEUS mod that gives raytracing to AMD and older Nvidia cards, while all these other games will be exclusives. You also have to realize that RTX is completely proprietary, so once a standard is established, all these games will be unplayable on future hardware. There are a lot of older Nvidia games for dx8 and 9 with exclusive effects that no… Read more »

Vrock
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Vrock

I recently played through Quake 2 again using the Q2XP mod. It’s very well done, and no new Nvidia card needed.

https://www.moddb.com/mods/quake-2-xp

Krogoth
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Krogoth

Q U A D D A M A G E ! ! !

jihadjoe
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jihadjoe

I’ve played around with Evolved and XP. They’re pretty good, but RTX Q2 is way better.

Cash Grab
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Cash Grab

Definitely Civ II.

Angel Cota
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Angel Cota

Jedi Knight and Jedi Academy. Lighting and shadows on those games sucked big time.
The Mafia series.
Doom3

Sean Hussey
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Sean Hussey

Minus well add the ray tracing to the remake of Morrowind instead.
Ray tracing for Skyrim?

Greyhound
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Greyhound

How bout the original Deus Ex? 3x Knights is the Old Republic

Genia
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Genia

Elon, plz save No One Lives Forever. TY

jpvalverde85
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jpvalverde85

Absolutely love all those games and i would consider into buying an RTX if Nvidia wants to fill a heart full of nostalgy (at the moment my Fury Nano still gets the job done at 1080p). Thief series also could be a great remake on RTX but i imagine the engine would be hard to update by his limitations, maybe rebuilding the game as a total conversion of The Dark Mod with RTX support could be doable. Bioshock is the lowest hanging fruit because it has a quite recent HD remake using an up to date framework.

Adnan
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Adnan

Regarding NOLF, where are these billionaires when you really really need them? I mean, at least 2000 billionaires in the world and not one of them is a gamer??? What the flippin’ #$#@%%!!!!

Peldor
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Peldor

I loved those games, but it’s hard to go as far back as 2000-2002. The models and textures are just so bad in comparison to modern titles it’s hard to get past it. Ray-traced lighting isn’t enough.

derFunkenstein
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derFunkenstein

Quake II RTX added new textures to the mix, which helped significantly.

Bean S
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Bean S

Dunno about Far Cry or Crysis, but Knights is the Old Republic could use some RTX love. Throw in Need For Speed: Carbon in there too.

Jesse
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Jesse

I think you misspelled “Most Wanted”

JustAnEngineer
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JustAnEngineer

I’ll toss out…
MechWarrior 2 & 3
Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic

Krogoth
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Krogoth

you dare to refuse my batchall?

— Colonel Leather Jacket Man

bthylafh
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bthylafh

Desert Bus.

derFunkenstein
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derFunkenstein

I would buy and re-buy and maybe re-buy again Max Payne RTX.

1984
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1984

The THIEF games.
Seriously, what could benefit more from it?

Krogoth
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Krogoth

My ray-tracing is augmented!

What a shame. He was a good shill, what a rotten way to cancel. I wish there was something more I could say……

— Leather Jacket Man

mebad
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mebad

FEAR and STALKER

mebad
Guest
mebad

Tomb raider series.Far Cry 2

Colton Westrate
Editor

As I basically said yesterday, whoever saves NOLF will have my gratitude forever. That might even include Epic, we’d have to see about that.

Saving NOLF is seriously at the top of my list of irresponsible ways I would spend vast sums of money should I ever have the chance.

sweatshopking
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sweatshopking

i used to own the disc version, but never bothered to play it.

derFunkenstein
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derFunkenstein

I have the PlayStation 2 version. It’s a ton of fun.

Spunjji
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Spunjji

I too owned a disc. I got as far as installing it and playing a few levels, but never really got far into it – Counter Strike proved too fatal a distraction.

LoneWolf15
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LoneWolf15

Agreed, but add Descent: Freespace and Freespace 2 (arguably the best space-flight combat games ever made) and I’d be all over that too.

For those two, they could shut up and take my money.

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ludi

Untying Gordian knot of NOLF requires taking on 20th Century Fox, Warner Brothers, AND Activision and getting them to agree on something complicated and legal with a very low monetary return: https://kotaku.com/the-sad-story-behind-a-dead-pc-game-that-cant-come-back-1688358811 And now half of Fox has been Borged by The Mouse, so there’s a further question of which half (or both) actually controls all affected licensing rights. I figure eventually Disney will buy out the rest of the licensing trifecta for unrelated reasons, then discover it is the sole owner of a new raft of unmonetized properties, including NOLF. Until then, I don’t think even Nvidia is big… Read more »

tanker27
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tanker27

yes, YES, YES for NOLF!

The voice acting and comedy in this game is the bar and standard!

“You look like you need a monkey.”

Krogoth
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Krogoth

Magnus is made of win.

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