(Sega AM1's universe)
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The House of the Dead: Remake (ザ・ハウス・オブ・ザ・デッド：リメイク, Za hausu bbu za Deddo: Rimeiku), stylized on some websites as THE HOUSE OF THE DEAD: Remake, is an upcoming remake of the 1996 Sega rail shooter The House of the Dead. It will be developed by MegaPixel Studio, financed by TA Publishing, and published by Forever Entertainment. The game was revealed on April 14th, 2021 and is scheduled to release later this year on the Nintendo Switch.
Like the original game, the remake is set in December 1998. Driven mad by his research, Dr. Curien releases hostile biologically-engineered creatures in his mansion. Players control AMS agents Thomas Rogan and G, who must dispatch the threat and rescue Curien's staff, including Rogan's fiancée Sophie Richards.
Forever Entertainment obtained the rights from Sega to develop and publish the remake, with Sega sharing half the revenue. The remake will stay "faithful" to the original House of the Dead's story while adding modernized graphics, voice acting, and gameplay adjustments. The House of the Dead series developer Sega AM1 is not involved with the game.
The Nintendo Switch has been the only confirmed platform, though there are written reports that Google Stadia, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Epic Game Store, and Steam will also be platforms. Physical editions of the game are in development by game publisher Microids.
According to Forever Entertainment's management board, The House of the Dead: Remake's story will remain "faithful" to the original. Preliminary screenshots depict Dr. Curien, numerous creatures, and Hermit, the third boss. The first trailer shows Curien confronting Thomas Rogan and G at the end of the third level. In another trailer, Rogan makes a brief appearance. Like the original game, the remake will have multiple endings.
The remake will have modern voice acting and audio quality, while retaining the original game's "cheesy" dialogue. Confirmed voice actors include Chris Okawa as Thomas Rogan and Magician, Brian Connor as Dr. Curien, Charlie Weirauch as G, and Natalie Roers as Sophie. Dianna Conley and Matthew Curtis have unknown roles.
According to its press release, the remake will receive "a whole new entourage". It is unknown if this refers to the new voice cast, or brand-new characters who are not from the original game.
The House of the Dead: Remake will reportedly be "true" to the original's rail shooting gameplay, supporting up to 2 players and having multiple endings. On the Nintendo Switch, the game may be played either via the console's TV, tabletop and handheld modes. The JoyCon analog joystick, gyroscope functionality, and other control styles will be offered.
Two modes of play have been confirmed: Classic Mode and Horde Mode. Classic Mode features the original House of the Dead with updated graphics. Horde Mode is a "modernized", fast-paced mode that has up to 15 times more creatures and allows the player to unlock rewards, such as other characters, through repeat play.
In addition to the default pistol, assault rifles and other weapons can be obtained. Unlike the original game, the player's score will always be visible, and point indicators will appear as creatures are defeated. However, the trailer states that the graphics and audio are subject to change. The blood color can be set to either red or green or rainbow.
Frame rates of 60 FPS and 30 FPS in the Switch's "docked" and "handheld" modes, respectively, are being targeted. Both modes will have a resolution of 720p.
The House of the Dead is a rail shooter developed by Sega's AM1 arcade division. Released to Japan in 1996 and worldwide the year after, the game was successful and spawned a franchise. It was also credited for popularizing zombies in the media, despite that director Takashi Oda does not consider the enemies "zombies".
The game received Sega Saturn and Microsoft Windows ports in 1998. Due to hardware limitations, the ports were graphically inferior to the arcade version. For technical reasons, the game was excluded from the 2008 compilation The House of the Dead 2 & 3 Return.
Polish game companies Forever Entertainment, MegaPixel Studio, and TA Publishing decided upon a House of the Dead remake while developing Panzer Dragoon: Remake, another Sega project. On September 25th, 2019, Forever Entertainment signed an agreement with SEGA Holding Co., Ltd. to remake The House of the Dead and its sequel, with both parties splitting the revenue. This was reported by Polish news site Graczposolita, who TA Publishing CEO Benjamin Anseaume alleged had "leaked" the news. Forever Entertainment confirmed the information on October 3rd, 2019.
The remake was erroneously titled House of the Dead HD on Anseaume's LinkedIn account. The official title, The House of the Dead: Remake, appeared on Forever Entertainment's official website and other sources. During investor chats in 2019 and 2020, Forever Entertainment CEO Zbigniew Dębicki gave updates on the status of the remake. He considers the remake an AA title and believes it has greater sales potential than Panzer Dragoon: Remake.
The House of the Dead: Remake was developed concurrently with Panzer Dragoon II Zwei: Remake, Magical Drop 6, Shadowgate 2, and several unannounced Square Enix titles. The game will be produced by Benjamin Anseaume and MegaPixel Studio founder Artur Grzegorczyn, with a team that includes staff members who previously worked on Panzer Dragoon: Remake.
The remake is being developed on the Unity game engine. The team worked with Sega, but did not communicate with Sega AM1. Production was unaffected by the COVID-19 pandemic, as the team was already used to working remotely.
To research the original House of the Dead, the team played it on original hardware and emulators. In response to criticisms and development mistakes with Panzer Dragoon: Remake, they also tested The House of the Dead: Remake on four platforms to limit delays, and targeted a higher frame rate in the Nintendo Switch's "docked" mode. The team has claimed that The House of the Dead: Remake improves daily and will launch in a better state than Panzer Dragoon: Remake.
Multiple control options will be offered. Anseaume and Grzegorczyn admitted that mimicking light gun controls on the Switch was "tricky". However, the team is not concerned about receiving backlash for the control scheme.
The game's original arcade version will not be included due to missing source code, difficulties with ripping assets (despite that Tim "egregiousguy" Ritiau, a House of the Dead fan, has successfully done so), and the risk of legal issues. A "Nostalgic Mode" with low-poly graphics may be considered if there is enough demand.
Zbigniew Dębicki claimed in November 2019 that the remake would premiere in 2020, which was corroborated by Forever Entertainment's 2020 premiere schedule. However, on January 22nd, 2021, Forever Entertainment tweeted that the House of the Dead remakes are still in development.
On February 2nd, 2021, a blank Twitter account for The House of the Dead: Remake was created, and the domain hotdremake.com was registered by Forever Entertainment. A member of the company confirmed on their Discord server that the Twitter account is official.
The remake was officially revealed during the Nintendo Indie World Showcase on April 14th, 2021. Following the presentation, the remake's Twitter account shared a full game trailer.
- "raport firmy FOREVER ENTERTAINMENT S.A." (Polish). Biznes.pap.pl (September 25th, 2019).
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- THE HOUSE OF THE DEAD: Remake - Announcement Trailer - Nintendo Switch (age-restricted)
- Natalie Roers [@NatalieRoers] (April 15, 2021). Natalie Roers on Twitter: "@Anseaume Keep the cheesey dialogue + more modern acting and better audio quality to compliment the gorgeous updated visuals= best of both worlds. " (English). Twitter. Retrieved on April 15, 2021.
- Chris Okawa [@ChrisOCowUh] (April 15, 2021). Chris Okawa on Twitter: "MOST EXCITED to announce I voice Rogan in the upcoming House of the Dead: Remake. Big Thanks to Natalie & the FE Team for having me on, & SEGA for reviving this incredible IP. Looking fwd to shouting "RELOAD" at ya a billion times #houseofthedeadremake #hod #NintendoIndieWorld " (English). Twitter. Retrieved on April 15, 2021.
- Natalie Roers [@NatalieRoers] (April 15, 2021). Natalie Roers on Twitter: "@wiki_dead @ChrisOCowUh @KoriMaru His name is Brian Conner. He is lead singer of the band Villa*Nova, formerly know as Weaving the Fate. " / Twitter" (English). Twitter. Retrieved on April 15, 2021.
- Chris Okawa [@ChrisOCowUh] (April 15, 2021). Chris Okawa on Twitter: "@KoriMaru Charlie Weirauch! With @NatalieRoers (Fear Affect, Blair Witch) as Sophie! The cast is so metal I'm obsessed " (English). Twitter. Retrieved on April 15, 2021.
- Dianna Conley VO [@DiannaConleyVO] (April 14, 2021). "Dianna Conley VO on Twitter: "I have a game coming to the @NintendoAmerica Switch! It's a @SEGA classic: The House of the Dead Remake! Thanks to @NatalieRoers for casting me. Honored to star again with @MictheMatt in another game! " (English). Twitter. Retrieved on April 14, 2021.
- Fragments of Silicon Season 14, Episode 22B: Artur Gregoznyc of Forever Entertainment - FragmentsofSilicon - YouTube
- THE HOUSE OF THE DEAD: Remake [@HOTDRemake] (April 14, 2021). THE HOUSE OF THE DEAD: Remake on Twitter: "@fj_josep @ForeverEntert red/green blood will be a toggleable option :)". Twitter.
- Weedon, Paul (July 17, 2017). George A. Romeo (interview). Paul Weedon. Archived from the original on December 30, 2019. “I think the zombie became popular because of Resident Evil and because of House of the Dead and because of video games more than anything else.”
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- Michał Król (September 25th, 2019). "Polacy stworzą remake dwóch części The House of the Dead" (Polish). Gramposolita.pl. “The House of the Dead: Remake i The House of the Dead 2: Remake będą mieć nową, dostosowaną do współczesnych standardów grafikę oraz lekko zmodyfikowaną rozgrywkę, ale w pełni zachowają oryginalny scenariusz. Spółka zapowiedziała, że materiały z pierwszej z gier zostaną zaprezentowane w najbliższych miesiącach.”
- "106 - Benjamin Anseaume from Forever Entertainment" (English). The SEGA Lounge (March 19, 2020). Retrieved on July 21, 2020.
- Forever Entertainment [@ForeverEntert] (October 3, 2020). Forever Entertainment on Twitter: "Hi Guys! We confirm the signing of the agreement regarding remakes of the games "The House of the Dead" and "The House of the Dead 2". No platforms or release dates have been confirmed, and unfortunately we can’t say anything more for now. Please keep fingers crossed for us and.." / Twitter. Twitter. Archived from the original on February 10, 2020.
- "Benjamin Anseaume's LinkedIn profile" (English). Retrieved on July 21, 2020.
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- Tim Ritiau [@egregiousguy] (March 11, 2021). Tim Ritiau on Twitter: "Up for today we have BO_hiru. A quick google translation defines hiru as "leech" which makes sense. It has 6 animations and differ from the Murrers and "Name" from Chapter 1. #hotd #houseofthedead #unusedcontent #hiru" (English). Twitter.
- Forever Entertainment [@ForeverEntert] (January 22, 2021). Forever Entertainment on Twitter: "Forever Entertainment on Twitter: "@Her_Reidiance Yes, we still do! It's still in development! Follow us to be up to date with any news about the games! 😉" / Twitter" / Twitter. Twitter.
- The House of the Dead: Remake's Social Blade
- The Wiki of the Dead [@wiki_dead] (February 7, 2020). The Wiki of the Dead on Twitter: "A @HOTDRemake Twitter account was launched earlier this month. On Forever Entertainment's Discord server, it was recently confirmed to be official. The domain http://hotdremake.com has also been registered by Forever Entertainment." / Twitter. Twitter.