Unfortunately, not long into the life cycle of the PS3, Sony had to cut out the PS2 backwards compatibility from its PlayStation 3 systems because the costs were far outweighing the profit Sony was making from including this feature. Factoring in the sad truth that developers make absolutely no money from used game sales, it just became impractical for Sony to continue producing PS3s with the technology necessary to play PS2 games.
This is when they decided to try something new:
"Re Mastering didn’t come up until about two years ago. For a developer, ReMastering in HD took a moderate amount of time and effort to achieve, and with the right title it could be very successful. Once we noticed the benefits of HD ReMastering, the decision was made to use God of War 1 & 2 as the test for the market, and they delivered."
Updating new consoles through firmware updates proved far too expensive, and releasing PS2 titles on PSN is still being debated within Sony HQ, so in the mean time Sony has sent a message to other developers by storming the market with two last-generation best-sellers packed into a shiny new HD package. According to the Sony rep:
"The God of War Collection had reached almost a million copies sold just after the holiday. Shortly aftter [sic] that Activision, EA , UbiSoft, Konami, and SquareEnix were all on board to issue ReMastered Edition of their best Playstation 2 Games."
There have not been many announcements or even rumors regarding HD collections since the release of the God of War Collection last year other than Sly Cooper Collection and a Team ICO Collection, but apparently there is a lot more interest in the remastering of old classics than has been previously reported.
"The industry’s best developers are ReMastering their best games. Prince of Persia, Shadow of Colossus, and ICO are just the beginning. When fans see what Konami’s doing to the Metal Gear series, and what Square’s doing with Final Fantasy, they’re going to be very happy."
Of course, there is no other verification of the Metal Gear Solid and Final Fantasy HD collections than the "one of Sony's own" that TheGameHeadz spoke to "at a recent press event," so feel free to keep breathing until more proof pops up on the web.
I can't see any of this as too outlandish though, considering the amount of money a company can make providing the relative ease of remastering a game that already has a dedicated fanbase and putting it back on the market. It is not only a way to provide people with updated versions of games they love, but also combats the used game sales that have been causing controversy for years now. Hopefully the titles all come out polished and thoroughly debugged though, because no one wants to support a cash-grab from Square Enix, Konami, or any other potential company involved in this very high definition future.
Now that Sony has proven they can sell an HD remastered collection of PS2 games, do you Ranters think that we will start seeing a larger amount of HD updates as the PS3's life cycle continues? Do you think Sony may instead explore a way to start including some form of backwards compatibility on the PlayStation 3 or future consoles?