In 2004 Starbreeze gave us a reason to believe that not all videogames based on movies were destined to suck. Their game The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay got high marks as a mature and moody FPS with spot on voice work and boasted some of the best graphics on both the Xbox and PC. We first heard that Atari is bringing Riddick back with a massive remake on PS3, Xbox 360 and PC way back in May of last year, but they’ve now announced (and released one lone screenshot) that the game will be joining their 2009 line-up. More specifically, the game is set for a Spring 2009 release.
The remake, titled The Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena, is much more than a mere graphical upgrade type of remake, though. Starbreeze wanted to make Assault on Dark Athena a must have even for gamers that bought the original. Assault on Dark Athena not only fully re-imagines the original game for a new audience on current systems with boosted HD power, pushing the limits of the Starbreeze engine; but it also fixes some of the original’s flaws — it was too short and lacked a multiplayer mode.
Assault on Dark Athena includes the entire original Escape from Butcher Bay story, which is a prequel to the movie Pitch Black. The game follows the tale of Riddick as he attempts to break out of the most high security prison in the galaxy. Butcher Bay is also where Riddick had his eyes doctored, which is a major gameplay element. Core gameplay lasted only about 10 hours without the side missions, but now we can get excited for an all new full length campaign beyond that where Riddick must take on the merc-ship Dark Athena and her merciless crew after his prison escape.
Finally, fans of the game can go deeper into the mythos of the Chronicles of Riddick and deeper into the gameplay with full multiplayer options. More details will be revealed in the months to come, but for now get your shivs and freaky contact lenses ready.