Metroid Prime / Project MPR / PrimeHack (Nintendo/Retro Studios/AetherLabs)

Metroid Prime is easily in my top 10 games of all time. In my opinion, it's one of the pinnacles of gaming with its impeccable and unique atmosphere, gameplay and music. No matter how many times i go back to it, it completely immerses me like it's my first playthrough all over again, every single time. Sadly though, it's one game that hasn't gotten the remastering love that it should have. There have been rumors over the last couple of years about an official remaster/remake in the works, but so far, nothing has ever been confirmed.

Luckily for us however, things aren't completely hopeless, as the folks over on the Prime Hack team have done a ton of work putting together a custom build of the Dolphin emulator made just for Prime. Better controls, fixed visual effects, Fov adjustment, along with a lot of other new options, all help bring Metroid Prime (and the Trilogy) closer to today's standards. This was a literal game changer for us Metroid fans. Here's the link for more info:

While you can use some upscaled texture mods to enhance the visuals (and they do help quite a bit and are very appreciated), the team over at Aether Labs have decided to go even further, jumping all the way in to do a full remaster of Metroid Prime, themselves. And what a remarkable job they're doing. Using a custom version of the Dolphin emulator based on PrimeHack-Ishiiruka, they are (to quote their website) adding: Handmade textures, material maps, bump maps and cubemaps, newly baked lightmaps, dynamic lights and particle effects, customisable HUD UI, native keyboard+mouse support/modern controller support, and additional custom content, including reticles and suits. Incredible stuff. Link to their site:

They recently released the first phase of their project, the opening level, Frigate Orpheon. I was completely blown away by the quality and after a few playthroughs, i knew i had to grab a few screenshots. I took these at 7-8k, and used Reshade to help with the banding of the sky outside the Frigate. I also either used Dolphins anti aliasing (SSAA) option, or Reshades (SMAA). I also wanted to get some shots with with Samus's helmet/visor and arm cannon/hands, so i adjusted the mods ambient occlusion so it wouldn't conflict with the hud, then used options in the emulator to bring her visor a bit more forward, while also repositioning her arm cannon more to the right (i just liked the look of that better). Finally, i edited a few textures to remove all reticles and some text that was in the way. The last piece of the puzzle was finding ways to bypass certain things like the boss battle or triggering the Ridley cutscene.