Kingpin Reloaded is an FPS remaster that I’m legitimately interested in. The original, released in 1999, wasn’t a big hit but it sure was memorable: Violent, profane, and with a weird, janky visual style that made character models look like they were constantly on the verge of melting. It also had some wickedly sharp difficulty spikes.
Somehow, all of that (and a great soundtrack) came together to make one of my favorite shooters of the era, so the announcement that it’s being brought back for modern hardware came as great news. Alas, it’s going to take longer to get here than originally anticipated: 3D Realms said in January that it expected to have Kingpin Reloaded out later this year, but pushed it back today until sometime in 2021.
Interestingly, the delay was not caused by the all-consuming release of Cyberpunk 2077, which most recently forced MechWarrior 5’s planned multiplatform launch into spring 2021. The extra time is needed in this case because earlier this year, the development team decided to change its approach to remaking the game.
« As you all know, the original source code for Kingpin no longer exists, so our original plan was to ‘recreate’ the game in a modern engine (The same approach Nightdive uses for their KexEngine games), » the Kingpin team said. « However, during this, we quickly realized that in order to get the game to feel 100 percent like the original (including the fantastic path-finding for AI, etc.), a better approach would be to reverse engineer the original game and engine completely, essentially re-creating the missing sources from scratch. »
The developers said that much of the programming and texture re-creation is complete, and that it will start « putting it all together » in January. Once that part of the process is complete, it’ll start showing the game off in earnest with screens, video, and a beta test.