Why Some Games’ Graphics Age Well (And Why Shenmue & Castlevania SotN Are So Special) – Best Video Game Podcast Ep 6

With all this talk about Shenmue 3, have you wondered what all the fuss is about? Janelle's been playing the original for the first time. Meanwhile, Heath, who finished that game well over a decade ago, has been watching and reminiscing.

We couldn't help but notice how the game, while undeniably dated, still looks good.

This led us also to discuss what makes certain graphics hold up well. Why do some games look good when they're new, crappy a year later, and downright laughable after five or six years? Meanwhile, some games still look great after 15 years, such as Shenmue and Castlevania: Symphony of the Night.

And what makes Shenmue's open world different than others? With so many other, bigger open world games around, why is there still such a dedicated following for Shenmue? Here we go:

>>Direct MP3 Download<<

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Episode 6: Easy on the Eyes

0:00 – Intro and quick recaps

2:35 – Dreamcast laser problems (see link below)

4:55 – Castlevania SoTN and Shenmue still look good

5:34 – Shenmue first impressions

8:53 – Shenmue's gameplay structure: doing detective work

14:00 – What Makes Shenmue's open world different than other games' open worlds?

15:43 – NPCs don't exist to serve the player… kind of like reality

20:04 – Symphony of the Night: Galamoth, Medusa shields, and level design

23:16 – SoTN speedruns and the backdash

27:37 – The artistry of 2D graphics

30:31 – Alucard's animation frames

34:50 – Graphics vs. aesthetics

38:03 – Good-looking 2D vs. good-looking 3D

43:34 – Using simple techniques to build better environments

45:18 – Tom's dreadlocks and Ryo's face

47:06 – Have FF7's graphics aged well or not?

51:24 – Jet Grind Radio

If the YouTube embed at the top of this article isn't your thing, you can click here to download the MP3 and take the my sexy voice with you wherever you go, or try the Sound Cloud embed below (which also allows downloads via that little arrow thing).


Thank you very much for listening. Let us know what you think, subscribe to the Sound Cloud and/or YouTube feeds if you dig it, and let us know which way you prefer to listen.

Oh and here's the link to that Dreamcast laser tool Janelle talked about.