- The Seamless HD Project is a fan-made project for the mainline PS1 Resident Evil games that overhauls the visuals across the trilogy.
- The overhauls include upscaled backgrounds through machine learning, sharper UI and high-quality FMV cutscenes.
- The Seamless HD Project requires the GameCube ports of Resident Evil 1,2 and 3 and must be played via Dolphin emulator.
Play Resident Evil like never before with the Seamless HD Project for Resident Evil 1,2 and 3 which is now finally complete. The Seamless HD Project is a free fan-made project that overhauls the visuals of the first three Resident Evil games on the PlayStation 1 and gives them a respectable facelift. It drastically upscales the backgrounds through machine learning while also overhauling the UI elements and all of the FMV cutscenes.
To install it players would need to use the GameCube ports of all 3 games and emulate them via Dolphin. While players can use any downloaded version of Dolphin the developers offer a customized build of Dolphin that fixes a music stuttering issue present in the default build and also offers a new 4:3 aspect ratio mode.
This is great news for old fans who have been spoiled by the high-quality remakes and want to revisit the originals with a slightly different look. This is also a good gateway for new fans who want to experience the old titles but find them a little too hard to get into because of their graphics. That is frankly a problem made worse by the fact that there aren’t a lot of ways to legally get these games without jumping through various hoops.
Background upscaling is only one of the many improvements made here. The Seamless HD Project also overhauls all of the FMV cutscenes across the trilogy, giving them a much sharper, cleaner look. The UI also gets a major facelift. The low-res character and item portraits are replaced with high-quality alternatives, the font is reworked to look clearer and all of the 3D models look significantly more realistic.
While I am personally not fond of the HD project—I think the overly smooth look takes away from what makes the first 3 games look as good as they do and the “melting” artefacts that you only see in games upscaled through machine learning are particularly off-putting—I still know there are many players who swear by this project, and I respect that.
It’s certainly not perfect, but is nonetheless fantastic if it convinces more people to try the original trilogy. The original Resident Evil trilogy form a trifecta of horror game history as some of the most iconic titles in the genre. The games set a mark on their industry for their signature survival horror style gameplay and realistic (at the time) visuals. The visuals of the original trilogy are interesting in particular due to how they were achieved.
In order to make it look as realistic as possible, Capcom used pre-rendered backgrounds for the earlier Resident Evil games, essentially, taking still pictures and putting them as the backgrounds. This means that the games would be able to render highly realistic environments without sacrificing on processing power and letting them make much higher quality 3D models.
This is also why the Resident Evil 1 Remake looks as good as it does. Released on the GameCube, the game still stands out for it’s insane visual detail and high quality 3D models thanks to its expert use of pre-rendered backgrounds. Many players, including myself, still long for a time when Capcom will go back to the classic pre-rendered, fixed camera style of Resident Evil.
While the series is on a great track with the remake of Resident Evil 4, it would be nice to see a return to what made the series standout in the first place.
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