You probably saw this coming, right? Our favorite Bandicoot Crash had his day in the sun, so of course his fellow PlayStation pal Spyro the Dragon was bound to see his own remaster sooner or later. That remaster is here with the Spyro Reignited Trilogy, and if you’ve got a decent amount of hard drive space, love The Police’s Stewart Copeland, and don’t mind a curious lack of subtitles here’s another chance to relive a trio of inspired platformers that helped put Insomniac Games (Spider-Man) on the map.
Spyro is one of the classic collect-a-thons, almost as legendary as your Mario or your Crash or your Donkey Kong, so a lot of the gameplay here is going to feel nostalgic for players of a certain age. Personally, this was my first experience with these games and even then they felt like something I’d played long ago. You’re collecting all kinds of stuff in these games, so be ready to dig around and explore every corner to get the most out of your experience.
As a fan of the Skylanders franchise of old, Spyro’s influence on those games was obvious from the start; both franchises share a nice, bouncy sense of joyous motion that invites you to romp around in a collecting and smashing rampage. As the series “progresses” we see some slight changes to the gameplay. Most notably, swimming was added Ripto’s Rage!, and you can imagine my surprise when water was an instant death in the first game; Year of the Dragon adds other playable characters as well, which is a nice touch.
You didn’t just come here for the classic experience, though, did you? No, you want those spicy new remastered graphics, and the Reignited Trilogy delivers. All three games are positively gorgeous! You’d hope so, too, given the comically huge near-40 GB install size these games require. By the by, if you’re thinking of picking up the disc version to avoid the bandwidth-killing limits, think again. The boxed copy only ships with the first game, meaning you’ll still have to download the other two anyway. Not a big deal if you’ve got an external hard drive or something, but worth keeping in mind. The file size didn’t irritate me as much as the fact that these games lack subtitles, a pet peeve for me and a serious accessibility issue for many others.
While the three games in Spyro Reignited Trilogy are essentially unchanged from their original forms aside from the presentation, that’s probably what the diehard fans are after anyway. You’re getting a chunk of your childhood – not my childhood, but maybe yours! – that looks extra nice on top of that. If nothing else you’ll be able to see where the whole Skylanders thing really started, and may one day rise again. The lack of subtitles is a little baffling, but generally speaking, this is a solid purchase for fans of classic platforming.