TechRadar Gaming is reporting live from Gamescom 2023 on the latest and greatest developments in gaming and hardware.
Revolution Software announced at Gamescom 2023 that Broken Sword would be coming back, with Broken Sword - The Shadow of the Templars getting a full remake while a sixth title in the series is coming in the future too, under the title Broken Sword - Parzival’s Stone.
Speaking to TRG ahead of the announcement, Cecil talked about the studio’s plans for a Broken Sword remake and the sixth title in the series. Cecil is a larger-than-life character, who is able to talk about the studio’s plans with enthusiasm. It even carries a pocketful of stones to illustrate the plans for Parzival’s Stone, but he also talks about how Broken Sword - The Shadow of the Templars would be using AI to upscale.
Cecil wasn’t shy about the studio’s use of AI technology, but he gave a fairly robust explanation of why the game was using it. The AI technology will be used to update the game’s animations.
When queried on this, Cecil said, " I completely share and appreciate the concerns. We're using our own data to train on. But probably more importantly, we're using a bunch of really talented animators who are taking the original animations and working on them so that we can use AI to upscale them.”
“It's absolutely brilliant. And that is then the basis on which they can then reanimate those characters. It’s our own system.”
Cecil explains that the intent isn’t to appropriate anyone’s work and that quality animators produce all of the work. The AI system is actually allowing the Broken Sword remake to happen, in fact.
“Nobody has been screwed on it at all,” suggests Cecil. “We have 30,000 animations in Broken Sword 1, and more in Broken Sword 2 - 40,000. So that's 70,000. If we wanted to convert the two games by hand, each one takes an hour. So if you pay somebody, let's say £15 an hour, you're talking well over a million pounds. So what we're able to do is really focus on really talented, high-quality people, and so much of the donkey work is taken away. We have a huge team - we have about 10 people animating at the moment, but they're not having to do the drudgery. What they're doing is they're adding the expressions and the character and all of those good things.”
While Cecil wouldn’t confirm that the studio was working on a remake for Broken Sword 2 as part of proceedings, this would certainly suggest that the team is considering a path to get the second game remade, too.
Honestly, I have my own knee-jerk reaction to AI tech being pushed into game development, but here, it seems like a way to get a beloved game the up-to-date re-release it deserves.
If you're looking for more games to pass the time while you wait for the Broken Sword remake, our list of the best RPGs may offer a new journey to embark on. We've also got a list of the best multiplayer games on PC if you're looking for something slightly more communal, too.