It’s not often you see PC assets getting scrapped for those that were compressed to fit on a cartridge with a mammoth storage size of 8 megabytes, but that’s precisely what’s just happened to the Turok remaster.
In a patch issued earlier today, Night Dive Studios — which recently remastered the original System Shock, and is working on a remaster of the second Turok game — revealed that all the original PC sounds in the re-release of Turok: Dinosaur Hunter have been replaced with their Nintendo 64 compatriots.
“Replaced all sounds of the game with the N64 version of the game. Quality is actually significantly better than the original 1997 PC port,” the notes read. It’s interesting given that the soundtrack on the N64 version had to be heavily compressed so the game could fit on Nintendo’s cartridge. David Dinstbier, the project manager on Turok, told IGN back in 1997 that the studio had compressed everything and that they had to “create texture maps that use less memory than large texture maps”.
“We found that initially we were a little bit greedy, and we made every model more detailed than we needed it to be, every texture map more detailed than we needed it to be, but as we started burning cartridges, we went through a learning curve during the course of the project.”
Returning to the remaster, other fixes today include optimisations to GPU memory usage, cleaner implementation of the bloom post-processing effect, as well as the neat ability to blow enemies away while in their death state. I’ve discovered in my time with the game — which you can read more about tomorrow — that some enemies will respawn, and blowing them off a cliff helps to prevent that.
The second update hadn’t been released through Good Old Games at the time of writing, although it should be released within the next 24-48 hours (if not already). Turok’s available now through Steam and GOG for $28.37, or approximately 2.57% of the cost of an Oculus Rift.