GOG.com is at it again with another revival of a forgotten classic. In the late 90s, Westwood Studios created an adventure game based on Ridley Scott's 1982 sci-fi Epic Blade Runner. Carrying the same name, it was an interesting take on that movie's universe that had players tracking down a different set of replicants (i.e. androids) from Harrison Ford's character.
There wasn't much in the way of tie-in -the game was a side story that ran concurrently with the movie-, but it did accurately capture the atmosphere of the classic film. The main reason this game hadn't gotten a re-release sooner was down to licensing rights. One company owned the Blade Runner name and another had the rights to Westwood's back catalog of titles, so it became a tangled web of figuring out how to get this on a digital marketplace.
There's also the fact that Westwood had lost the source code for the game nearly 20 years ago. Thanks to efforts from ScuumVM community members and Alcon Interactive (license owner for the game), the game was reverse-engineered and is now available for purchase. You can grab it for $8.99 during GOG's winter sale. It will return to its regular $9.99 price when the sale ends.
It's always wonderful to see pieces of gaming history like this come to light. We often take for granted how readily available newer games can be. With digital distribution becoming the norm and copyright licenses being somewhat updated for modern times, chances are our current games won't be disappearing for a long while.
Older games, though, aren't so lucky. Certain games will always remain available (Capcom is going to put Resident Evil 4 on every platform until the end of time), but others are lost to the annals of history. That isn't even taking into account how older PC hardware is so dramatically different from our current systems.
Blade Runner may not be an all-time classic, but it holds a special place in many's hearts and is well worth digging into for fans of the film. Now, you don't have to have been born before the 80s to play it.
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