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Polished Port

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Jared Petty: When in your mind you consider the Valis PC-Engine versions, are these the definitive versions of these games for you? Why or why not?
Yukito Ohayashi: I do consider these to be the definitive versions. The original PC version did not have any sprite (object) functionality, so it was really not suited for action games. Also, with the PC-Engine's use of CD-DA sound, the BGM and voiceover in the visual scenes were really high quality. The PC-Engine was the hardware that could best showcase Yuuko's charm at the highest level possible at the time, and I still believe to this day that it was the best choice for this game.
— Limited Run Games's interview from the Bonus Material included with Valis: The Phantasm Soldier Collection

Porting a game from one platform to another generally carries a lot of preconceptions, and not entirely without reason. These days, gamers are accustomed to seeing poor porting jobs done by lazy developers looking to make a quick buck without taking the time to iron out the issues with the new versions.

It doesn't have to be this way, of course: Sometimes, being able to port a game from one platform to another gives developers the extra time they would have already needed to polish their game up, tweaking the gameplay, possibly even adding new levels, and in the best-case scenario, eliminating the technical limitations that held back the original releases. And this is when that happens: Ports that exceed the originals far and away, and are likely to go on to be revered as the greatest possible versions of that game. In the most extreme cases, the ports themselves can take a game that was average at best, and elevate that game into classic status. And sometimes this trope means that a godawful game becomes at least playable—in short, Porting Disaster inverted.

In the case of emulators, the entire console itself is essentially ported to another platform. While emulation usually introduces problems of its own (such as requiring the host system to be several times more powerful than the original), it can also improve upon the performance of the original console's hardware. For consoles that originally used optical media, the use of virtual drives can reduce load times dramatically. Modern GPUs can easily outperform those of the Nintendo 64 and PlayStation, which means that emulation for their games can be rendered in much higher resolutions than the original consoles were capable of while elimating texture warping and geometry issues prevelant on those consoles. Save states can even be used to bypass Save-Game Limits. The issue of battery life for handheld systems can also be circumvented by playing them on a home system. Of course, emulation itself (barring official examples such as the Virtual Console and PlayStation Classics) is a pretty controversial subject, and while emulators themselves are perfectly legal, the ownership and use of downloaded ROMs, ISO files, BIOSes, etc. are a rather murky gray area.

Compare and contrast, of course, Porting Disaster. See also Updated Re-release, which can be a Polished Port. If a port of an arcade game to another system matches the original one-to-one, you have an Arcade-Perfect Port.


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  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • Though the original Japanese version of Zelda II: The Adventure of Link had animated overworld map tiles thanks to being on the Famicom Disk System, when it came time to port it to the Nintendo Entertainment System for the USA it got a lot of quality of life improvements. Some of the more obnoxious sound effects were addressed like Barba's constant roaring was removed and the shrill sound of the text was swapped with a soft typewriter sound, the boss battle music was extended to a longer loop, the rematch with Jermafenser was replaced with a new boss Gooma, the cruel mechanic of dropping all your stats to match your lowest one on a Game Overnote  was outright removed, a better Game Over screen was added, a lot of sprites were tweaked to look better, items could be picked up by simply touching them rather than striking them with the sword, and extra NPC sprites were added to give more variety to towns.
    • The Legend of Zelda also got a large boost when it was ported from the Famicom Disk System to the NES. The move from disk to cartridge eliminated the need for load times and disk swapping, resulting in a smoother gameplay experience all around. This conversion, made possible by advancements in cartridge technology, was so well-done that it essentially spelled the beginning of the end for the Famicom Disk System; it was even ported back to Japan as a standard Famicom game after the Disk System was discontinued.
    • Nintendo could've phoned it in with their inevitable remake of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past to the GBA. A good game on its own merit with controls modified to make up for the lack of two buttons. What did we get? Additional sounds, the ability to continue from the area you saved or died in, Four Swords multi-player mode and an extra quest and dungeon that are connected to said multi-player mode. Giving you the option to play with the original SNES palette was good too (in contrast to the brightened graphics ports and/or remakes to the GBA often use to compensate for the original model's unlit screen). The only downsides are the lower music quality due to the GBA's inferior sound chip, and for some people, Link now having a voice (which can get annoying, as Link now does a Kiai every single time he swings his sword).
    • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time was ported to the GameCube as part of the Master Quest bonus disc for pre-ordering The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker and was also a part of the Collector's Edition compilation Nintendo gave away at various times (such as to people who had registered a system and games on Nintendo's website or to Nintendo Power subscribers). The visuals remained largely unchanged, but most of the textures were made slightly sharper and the game's references to button inputs were changed to match the GameCube controller.
    • The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, already a gorgeous game for GameCube, was further revamped for Wii U with refined visuals, as well as major improvements over some time-consuming parts, such as the sea travel, the Triforce hunt and the Nintendo Gallery, plus the addition of Miiverse features, increased wallet sizes, a harder Hero Mode difficulty setting (which can be accessed immediately and turned off at any time), and a refined soundtrack. The only drawback is the removal of the Tingle Tuner.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, originally a Multi-Platform release for GCN and Wii, was ported in 2016 for the Wii U which, in addition to featuring updated HD graphics that fix much of the Real Is Brown complaints about the original version, includes a new item that aids in the annoying ghost-hunting sidequest, amiibo and Miiverse support, a button to instantly transform between Link's human and wolf forms without having to talk to Midna, increased wallet sizes, and an optional "Hero Mode" setting that substantially ups the difficulty. Also, the regular difficulty uses the GameCube orientation while Hero Mode is mirrored, à la the Wii version.
  • Asterix & Obelix XXL 2: Mission: Las Vegum came out on the PSP a year after the original PlayStation 2 and PC releases. While the visuals got a downgrade (the scenery is less detailed), it makes up with some extras that are exemplified by its new subtitle, Mission: Wifix: thanks to the Wi-Fi capabilities of the system, a second player can join the main game mode (in the original version you can only switch between the two Gauls and one stays always CPU-controlled), and several mini-games for up to four players have been added.
  • Asterix at the Olympic Games was initially released on Wii, PlayStation 2 and PC, with the latter version being marginally better because, at least, it could enjoy a better frame-rate and higher resolutions. The Xbox 360 port was released almost a year later and they made good use of that time: beside the advantages of the higher system specs over the previous console releases, it's got textures of much better quality than the ones in the PC version, making this the definitive version of the game (for what it's worth).
  • The Dreamcast version of Soul Reaver was released a fair bit after the PC and PlayStation versions, and the benefits of fancier hardware with redrawn higher-res textures and more complex character models make it the version to play.
  • Dust: An Elysian Tail was ported from the Xbox 360 to Windows by the developer himself. Dean designed the port with PC gamers in mind, being one himself, and put forth the effort of making a port that PC gamers would be happy with, and succeeded. The PC version hosts multiple of visual options and tweaks, crisper graphics, and the option of using higher-quality character portraits during dialogue. The game also works remarkably well with keyboard and mouse for a console-to-PC conversion, and you can switch back and forth between keyboard to controller on the fly.
  • Shadow Complex received an HD remastered version for PC, macOS, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4, featuring some improved high-resolution textures and models, 60 FPS presentation, adds new takedown maneuvers Jason can perform, and an expanded Proving Grounds with new tutorials and challenges. The PC version also has the added benefit of keyboard and mouse controls, which can help with shooting enemies in the 2.5D backgrounds. A later patch also added ten save slots, allowing players to make multiple playthroughs without deleting their existing save files possible compared to the original Xbox 360 version.
  • Released at a time when the Xbox 360 was celebrating its tenth year, Rise of the Tomb Raider pulls off a stellar port with textures and effects comparable to that of the Xbox One version. In 2015, the Xbox 360 was largely being cast to the wayside (evidenced by Activision's half-hearted "port" of Call of Duty: Black Ops III that didn't even include the single-player campaign and dropped the normally-smooth Call of Duty gameplay to a sluggish 30 FPS) so the level of love and effort put into Rise is pretty phenomenal (and on top of that, they even managed to somehow get such an impressive product onto a single DVD disc when games even older than it were having to ship on two for the Xbox 360).
  • LEGO Star Wars the Complete Saga. On top of containing both the prior games and all their content, with free rein to mix and match, it also adds the improvements of the second game to the original, including better vehicle levels and every character being able to build.
  • The number of ports of Cave Story is comparable to the number of ports of Lunar: The Silver Star, and each capitalizes on the last. The WiiWare port has redone sprites, the ability to play as Curly, and the European version gets an additional soundtrack.note  Cave Story + has all this and the Wind Fortress, somehow harder than the Sacred Grounds. 3D has polygonal models, and Cave Story +'s eShop release boasts everything + does but the graphics, and to compensate it's in stunning 3D. The Switch version then adds onto all of this with the Wii's remastered graphics, animated talking sprites, widescreen, some gorgeous subtle lighting effects, and co-op in a later update.
  • The original NieR is regarded as a Cult Classic whose gameplay was considered overall average. The next-gen port, NieR Replicant ver.1.22474487139..., takes inspiration from the game's successor, NieR: Automata, by improving the combat to make it more fast-paced and fluid, as well as making quality-of-life improvements to the game's world and reintroducing content that was originally Dummied Out. In addition, the game marks the release of the game's Replicant version outside of Japan, due to the west originally only receiving the Gestalt version.

    Action Game 
  • The PC port of Devil May Cry 4: After the outsourced Porting Disasters that were DMC3 and Resident Evil 4, Capcom got the hint and handled the port of DMC4 entirely in-house, developing it alongside the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions. So why the long gap between the console and PC releases? Because Capcom wanted to get it right, and that they did. Besides delivering a game that could run decently on older systems and awesomely on recent ones, they also added the surprisingly cathartic Legendary Dark Knight difficulty level, which is essentially the normal difficulty level with lots of Mooks, made possible by the greater processing power high-end PCs have over consoles. Since then, Capcom have delivered a host of fantastic PC ports to their games, including Street Fighter IV (which includes addition visual tweaks as a PC-exclusive bonus) and Resident Evil 5 (which comes certified for 3D vision, assuming you have the right peripherals). Unfortunately, "rampant piracy" (rather than sales of paying customers) of the PC version of SFIV meant that Super Street Fighter IV only came out as part of the Arcade Edition release, and Resident Evil 5: Gold Edition took five years to come to PC.
  • No matter which side of the controversy you put yourself at, one thing is clear: The guys at QLOC did one hell of a good job when working on the PC port of DmC: Devil May Cry (the other consoles were made by Ninja Theory). The game truly shines in the graphic department when played on a PC, and there is also the fact that the game is actually playable and doable, even on higher difficulties, with keyboard and mouse, without control issues of any kind, very much not what you would expect of a spectacle fighter. PlayStation 4 and Xbox One later received a Definitive Edition with visuals on par with the PC port running in 1080p at 60 FPS, bundles all of the game's DLCs, adds a slew of new modes, readjusts many gameplay elements, adds a new DMC1 skin for Dante, and features a Bloody Palace mode for Vergil.
  • While the Devil May Cry HD Collection containing 1, 2, and 3 had its fair share of small issues due to having to work with pre-release code rather than finalized builds, they were already a solid way to play the original PS2 games (or, at least the good pair). When it was ported to the Nintendo Switch however, DMC3 in particular was given several new features: the Style Change of its sequel, meaning Dante can use all six styles on the fly, full weapon switching so the player never has to manage their gear between missions or at divinity statues, and full on local Co-Op Multiplayer for Bloody Palace, allowing two players to use different saves and even have Dante and Vergil team up with an overhauled camera just to keep both players on-screen (or split screen in the case of boss fights).
  • While the NES version of Contra may not had the same detailed graphics as the arcade version, the stages were greatly expanded and rearranged from the arcade version, with more traps and pitfalls to avoid in addition to the usual assortment of enemy grunts, cannons, and vehicles to destroy. The change from the arcade version's vertical setup to a traditional horizontal one also makes the action less constrained and there are more power-up capsules and pill-box sensors than in the arcade version (and unlike the arcade version, there's no need to downgrade to the default gun to obtain some of them). The boss of the Waterfall stage was even changed from a generic sensor defended by two rotating guns and a five-way cannon to an alien statue that spits fireballs with its tentacles and mouth. The time limit from the 3D stages was also removed and the music is faster paced than the arcade version (as mentioned above).
    • Super C, the NES version of Super Contra, is also considerably different from its arcade counterpart. Whereas the arcade game featured an upgradeable weapon system and loose jumping controls, the NES version used the same play mechanics and power-ups as the first NES game, with the main changes being replacing the 3D stages with overhead stages much like its arcade counterpart and turning the Fire Gun into a useful weapon. The stage designs and order are roughly the same as the arcade version's at first, but the game deviates from the second half of Stage 3 and onward by adding plenty of new stages and rearranging the order of the final set of bosses.
  • No More Heroes was ported to the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 as No More Heroes: Heroes' Paradise, featuring high-resolution graphics, revamped controls and alternate, more stripperific costumes for the female characters in Very Sweet Mode. The PS3 version supports PlayStation Move. The Xbox 360 version never made it outside Japan though. The Switch version, while not having the graphics of the PS3, remedies it with 60 FPSs, improved controls for the controllernote , optional motion controls with the Joy-Con, and the Desperate Struggle port marking the first time that the Japanese version of "Phillistine" is played during Margaret's fight.
  • The HD Edition of Zone of the Enders: The 2nd Runner for the PlayStation 3 was the opposite of this up until Konami and Hexa Drive released the Version 2.0 patch to undo the damage done by High Voltage Software (a lesson they didn't learn from the Silent Hill HD Collection). After the patch, it runs on a much smoother frame-rate with enhanced visuals for 1080p. The version of The 2nd Runner that was used in the HD Collection is also the never-released-to-the-States Special Edition, which featured more missions, new cut-scenes and battle sequences for the main story, extra difficulty levels, and new tutorials for the sub-weapons. Unfortunately, Xbox 360 owners are left in the dirt. The game later received another remaster for PlayStation 4 and PC as Zone of The Enders: The 2nd Runner M∀RS, which bumps up the graphics even further up to 4K with gorgeous improvements, 5.1 surround sound presentation, revised and expanded tutorials, a new "Very Easy" difficulty for those who just want enjoy the story, a new "PRO" control scheme, an updated ZORADIUS mini-game, and the ability to play the game in VR from the perspective of Jehuty's cockpit. The PC version in particular also has added some extra yet optional visual flourishes such as motion blur effects, film grain, and screen space occlusion and reflections.
  • The Genocide2: Genocide Square compilation for FM Towns is a much improved version of the original Sharp X68000 games, especially the first game. The first Genocide has re-balanced enemy placement and difficulty, while the sequel removes the cooldown meter of Betty+, adds an individual Weapon Select button to make weapon changes much more simpler than the original, and more attacks to perform with your saber. It also features new cut-scenes that fleshes out the story more, updated graphics, and remixed music for both games. The DOS version of Genocide 2 is more-or-less a port based the FM Towns version. It goes back to the Sharp X68000 cut-scenes and features slightly less colors used but has enhanced CD-quality music.
  • Bayonetta:
    • The first game was bundled with its sequel for Wii U, with performance on par with the Xbox 360 version, higher quality shadows, vertical sync, and extra Nintendo-themed costumes that are not only cosmetic, but also include their own unique special features. What are they? 
    • Don't have a Wii U, but have a Switch? Fret not, the first two games are on Switch as well (as part of a promotional campaign for Bayonetta 3), with everything the Wii U versions have on a console you can play on the go.
    • The PC port of the game provides plenty of graphics options and manages to outclass the console versions in terms of image quality and performance, running at a mostly stable 60 FPS during gameplay, though cutscenes run at 30 FPS.
  • The PC version of Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z has a number of graphics options, a better camera in the Wideshot option, rebindable keys (with the option of secondary keys for each action), and can run at 60 FPS.
  • The 2019 remaster of Onimusha: Warlords features upgraded visuals, analog support alongside the original control scheme, the ability to swap weapons without pausing, a rerecorded soundtrack, and dual audio. Oh, and there's a previously censored cutscene now available.
  • SNK stopped outsourcing the NES ports of their Ikari Warriors games after the first two, and decided to port the third game, Ikari III: The Rescue, using an in-house team. They quickly realized what Micronics did not—attempting to translate the arcade's unique rotating-joystick controls to an NES controller was an exercise in frustration and failure. Instead, they rewrote the entire game to use simple directional facing controls, adjusted the enemy AI to accomodate the new limitation, and limited the number of sprites on screen to reduce the previous' entries infamous sprite flicker. SNK ended up creating a perfectly serviceable (if traditionally Nintendo Hard) semi-isometric beat-em-up and arguably the best port of the Ikari Warriors series. Unfortunately, it was too much of a departure from the familiar Run-and-Gun gameplay to hold up.
    • SNK also ported the arcade game POW: Prisoners of War to the NES, and while its art isn't as detailed as the arcade version and the two-player option had to be removed, there are far more levels, the controls are more responsive, and the enemy AI has been tuned to be both more interesting and less cheap. It also provided actual boss fights at the end of levels to keep things interesting. The end result is a game that, while once again quite Nintendo Hard, was also a decent translation of the original beat-em-up.
  • Cröixleur Σ received an enhanced port for the PlayStation 4 and Vita, boasting revamped graphics, a new soundtrack, two more playable characters, an expanded story, new gameplay modes, the ability to dress up the girls in different outfits and accessories that can give them various buffs (some of which were DLC), local co-op multiplayer, and in the case of the Japanese PS4 version, the ability to communicate with the girls in VR. It would later see a port on the Switch and PC as the Deluxe Edition (to differenciate itself from its previous versions on PC), the latter of which is sadly missing the co-op multiplayer features but does include all of the DLCs from the PS4 and Vita versions.

    Adventure Game 
  • The Secret of Monkey Island was greatly improved on its CD-ROM release, with pictures of the items in the inventory rather than text, a more concise set of commands, and most importantly, came on one disc, rather than several floppies. The only drawback was that they removed the 'stump joke' which is one of the most popular jokes in the series.
  • The PC version of Escape from Monkey Island is filled with lag issues and Game-Breaking Bugs, but the PlayStation 2 version doesn't have them and also comes on one disc rather than two. Most importantly, the controls are mapped to the controller rather than random keys, making for a more intuitive experience.
  • As shown in this article, the Japanese PC version of Sierra's first graphic adventure Mystery House kept the graphics as black-and-white line drawings but redrew them to look more professional. The same publisher released Softporn Adventure for the PC-88 as Las Vegas, with original graphics added.
  • When Enchanter got ported to Japan in early 1993, software development company SystemSoft reworked the game by adding a few improvements, such as the recognition of verb commands typed in kana or the Latin alphabet; the access of such verb commands by pressing corresponding buttons (the player still has to type the name of an object, though); the display of a list of objects in the environment after the player has typed in a command; and the addition of enhanced graphics and artistic background pictures in every location on which the text is super-imposed. The game was then released for the PC-98 in March 1993 as Enchanter: Wakaki Madōshi no Shirén (Enchanter: The Trial of the Young Sorcerer). Compare the screenshots of the ports of the original to the screenshots of its enhanced PC-98 remake.
  • Zak McKracken and the Alien Mindbenders had an enhanced 256-color version that was released in Japan only on the FM Towns.
  • Head over Heels was converted from the ZX Spectrum to the Amstrad CPC by the original coding team, who put in a few fixes as well as making excellent use of the four-color palette of the CPC's higher-resolution mode (which was used far less colorfully in all too many ports of Speccy games).

    Beat 'em Up 
  • The Sega Genesis port of Battletoads. Among the improvements: The graphics are more colorful, the music is better (sounding more rock-inspired than the NES), there are some bug fixes, and most importantly, the game is much more forgiving than the NES version, particularly in the levels "Turbo Tunnel" and "Volkmire's Inferno".
  • The Genesis version of Captain America and the Avengers, unlike the SNES version, is reasonably similar to the arcade version (despite missing the cutscenes), including all of the hilariously bad voice acting.
  • Final Fight One is a GBA port of Final Fight Guy, which in turn was a slightly enhanced version of the original SNES port of Final Fight (it replaced Cody with Guy, added a few new power-ups, and featured different enemy placement). While it isn't quite as good as the arcade version, it does fix many of the problems present in the SNES version like the fact that it has all three characters (Cody is brought back), it has a 2-Player mode (via link cable) and the Industrial Area stage with Rolento is restored. This version also added versions of Guy and Cody from Street Fighter Alpha, even with their own plotlines recognizing this. There was also the Sega CD version of Final Fight. Not only does it include all six stages, all three main characters and the 2-player co-op mode, it also made good use of the CD add-on and upped the music quality considerably.
  • The Genesis version of Golden Axe added an extra level, a new final boss, an Easy Mode, a "Duel Mode", and more color schemes for enemies. The MS-DOS version had all this and 256-color graphics, but also lower-quality sound effects.
  • The SNES version of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time had slightly lower graphics quality than its arcade predecessor, but made up for it by having somewhat higher sound quality and including an extra stage, several new game play modes, the ability to change the Turtles' coloration to darker comic/movie colors instead of their bright green cartoon coloration and several new and/or redesigned bosses.
  • The PlayStation 2 version of Viewtiful Joe included a new, very easy difficulty called "Sweet" (originally from the Japan-only Viewtiful Joe: Revival), as well as Dante from Devil May Cry as an unlockable character.
  • The PlayStation Portable port of Warriors Orochi 2 by Koei Canada included the extra characters and stages from the Japan-exclusive Warriors Orochi Z complete with English voices, after that version was canned for Western release. It helped that the game ran amazingly well on the portable, too.
  • The PC Engine CD port of Mad Stalker: Full Metal Force has updated graphics, a remixed soundtrack, two more playable characters for its Story Mode, and animated cut-scenes in between certain stages of the game. Unfortunately, it never left Japan in any shape or form.
  • M2's version of Sega Vintage Collection: Streets of Rage and Golden Axe on Xbox 360 not only compiles their respective trilogy, it also features a slew of graphical options, superior visual quality, customizable control scheme, the ability to save at anywhere anytime, plus save replays and share them online. It also adds new trial modes, online multi-player, and a jukebox where you can listen to the music in these games, including their unused tracks. These compilations also allows players ability to play each of the games' different regional versions, finally giving Western players the ability to play the original Japanese (albeit untranslated) version of Bare Knuckle III. The downside with the Golden Axe collection is that it uses the arcade version of the first game instead of the enhanced Genesis port.
  • The Sega Genesis port of The Punisher (Capcom) does a reasonably fine job.
  • The digital release of Guardian Heroes for Xbox 360 presents the game in widescreen, features enhanced HD visuals, redrawn character artwork, re-worked voice-overs, new sound effects, a revised script, redesigned gameplay mechanics, updated A.I., online multi-player, and expanded Versus Mode to twelve players. The game also give players the option of playing the game with the original gameplay mechanics and Sega Saturn visuals.
  • Hyrule Warriors
    • The New 3DS port, Hyrule Warriors Legends, manages to pack in all of the missions of the original, plus all of the DLC characters and maps (with tweaks to specific missions and unlock placement to give it its own identity). In addition, the game adds new characters (including several fan favorites, like Skull Kid and Tetra) and a story mode for them, an indicator to show what subweapon can interrupt an enemy's attacks, and tweaks to the Giant Boss fights to make fighting them less onerous. Trying to play it on an old 3DS model is problematic by comparison with a lower frame rate and no stereoscopic 3D mode.
    • The Switch port, subtitled Definitive Edition, included the improvements of Legends, took advantage of the hardware upgrade, and rebalanced Adventure Mode's grading system.

    Driving Game 
  • Crash Nitro Kart for the Game Boy Advance plays faster and controls tighter than the console version, making it feel arguably closer to the more acclaimed Crash Team Racing in terms of feel. Aside from obvious hardware limitations, the game matches the console version in terms of content and has some of its own, namely playable bosses (the lack of which is a major sore point for fans of the console game, as until Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled 16 years later this was the only way to play as said bosses) and even Spyro the Dragon as a guest racer.
  • The Nintendo 64 port of Cruis'n World is missing the ability to murder wildlife, but it's graphically closer to the arcade original than the N64 version of Cruis'n USA was to its arcade version. On top of that, the developers at Eurocom also added circuit tracks, turbo boost, more cars, and four-player multiplayer.
  • FAST RMX has everything FAST Racing NEO has to offer, including its DLC, in a single purchase, on the Switch, allowing you to not only play it on the go, but also in local wireless multiplayer mode.
  • Initial D Arcade Stage Version 2 received a port to the PlayStation 2 known as Initial D Special Stage. Not only does it retain the slick 60 frames per second of the arcade game (and doesn't drain your quarters!), it also includes an additional story mode based off the original manga containing fifty races and challenges spanned across three characters, along with a few new race courses that would later be merged back into the main arcade series.
  • Mario Kart 8 was ported from the Wii U to the Switch as Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. The port includes all of the characters from the DLC packs plus a few new ones like Bowser Jr. and the Inklings from Splatoon, several new battle modes (many being classics like the classic free for all Balloon Battle in an enclosed arena, Shine Thief, and Bob-omb Blast), all the tracks from the previous DLC packs, several gameplay tweaks like the third level of boost, updated AI, significant balancing changes, and a native 1080p resolution when in docked mode (native 720p for handheld mode, which was still an improvement over the dynamic resolution of the Wii U version). The port also brings back the double item box mechanic from Mario Kart: Double Dash!! to allow players to hold two items at once, as well as the Boo item, which last appeared in Mario Kart DS (which steals another player's item and makes the user turn invisible), while Battle Mode gets an exclusive item in the form of the Feather (which is used to make a big jump instantly) from the first installment. And this version would eventually go on to get DLC of its own which added an additional 48 tracks.
  • The Nintendo 3DS port of OutRun reproduces the 1986 arcade original's graphics, quirks and all, while also adding 3D effects and a widescreen mode, running at a silky-smooth 60 frames per second, twice that of the original. It also adds two new music tracks, Cruising Line and Camino a Mi Amor that so faithfully capture the sound and spirit of the three existing tracks that they could easily have been cut tracks from the original game. To round it off, there are unlockable upgrades for the car, awarded for completing each of the five endings, enhancing the speed, control and handling, as well as changing the car's paint job.
  • The unofficial, reverse-engineered PC port of the OutRun arcade engine, Cannonball, faithfully reproduces the arcade original while adding graphical upgrades (including a higher-resolution display), a widescreen mode, and a comprehensive track editor. A promised future addition to the track editor will even allow your custom tracks to be played on the original arcade game!
  • The Sega Genesis version of Rock n' Roll Racing has an added music track- Golden Earrings' Radar Love, and they managed to keep everything the SNES version had, including the announcer, and have it running just as smoothly on the Genesis. This despite the Genesis' more limited color palette and more restrictive sound architecture. The Definitive Edition in the Blizzard Arcade Collection meanwhile added the full songs plus 4-player splitscreen and widescreen support.
  • Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing on the Nintendo DS used a custom engine to include most of the content of the console versions while running at a smooth framerate on the handheld, creating a faithful port that sacrifices little and provides an excellent portable alternative.
  • Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed's PC port. While the port for the first ASR was pretty watered-down (no online play, no controller support, no DLC), SUMO knew they had to make up for it by making a fantastic PC port of the sequel. Some of the advantages that the PC version has over the console/handheld versions are: Full 60FPS and 1080p resolution, more detail in the shading and character models (including face and eye animations!), five exclusive characters (three of which are Pyro, Heavy, and Spy from Team Fortress 2, who all take up one character slot and take turns driving on different terrains), and it gets updated on a regular basis, meaning it has less glitches than the console versions (although online mode is still very buggy). Additionally, the PC version has had a steady stream of DLC characters added to the roster while the console versions have had nothing beyond the initial Metal Sonic and OutRun Beach Bonus Pack thanks to Development Hell.
  • Virtua Racing:
    • While Virtua Racing Deluxe, the 32X port of Virtua Racing, doesn't have graphics that are as good as the arcade original, it does have three different cars (rather than just one), and five tracks rather than three. It plays rather closely to the arcade original, and much more smoothly than the Mega Drive port. Also worth noting about Virtua Racing Deluxe is that it is one of the first console racing games to feature rendered damage on one's car.
    • The SEGA AGES port on Nintendo Switch by M2 quickly gained a reputation as being the most accurate port of the game. It bumps the visuals up to 60 FPS from the original 30 while remaining faithful to the original, has an 8-player multiplayer mode (a first for console versions of the game), and features a replay mode designed after the live feed from the arcade version.

  • Test Drive: Le Mans for the Dreamcast. Rumor says the publisher only wanted a straight port of the PlayStation game, but the developers were impressed by the system and insisted on a total revamp to fully use its power.

    Fighting Game 
  • Dragon Ball Z: Budokai: Despite the lack of the original soundtracks, the menus and cutscenes not being expanded to widescreen, and the exclusion of Budokai 2, the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 ports of the first and third installments have been touched up pretty nicely in other areas. The graphics pop with the upgrade to HD and the framerate is increased to 60fps. Budokai 1 also has a quality of life improvement, gameplay-wise, in that the second player can finally choose the "Custom" option for their chosen character's moveset in the versus mode, which was oddly left out of the original PlayStation 2 and Nintendo GameCube releases. The Updated Re-releases are also based on the original Japanese PS2/GameCube releases, which means the extra costumes in Budokai 3, which were initially left out for a later re-release internationally are in the game's code and are still unlockable with the same codes as they were originally.
  • Virtua Fighter for Sega 32X, despite greatly downgraded visuals which made the characters look like they were made of wooden blocks, is considered a fan-favorite of the game, and for good reason. It retains all characters and their move sets from the arcade original, cool music very similar to the arcade edition, arcade-perfect control and features ranking and tournament modes, as well as other options not featured in other releases. This game alone is a reason to buy a 32X.
  • The Dreamcast port of Soulcalibur. Like SoulEdge, the first Soulcalibur arcade game was based on the original PlayStation hardware, which means the Dreamcast port ended up being visually far superior to it (as in the greatest-looking console game ever at release plus its copious extra modes).
  • The PlayStation 2 port of Tekken Tag Tournament, completely overhauling the System 12-based graphics and adding quite a handful of extras, including the popular side game Tekken Bowl.
  • The Mega Drive/Genesis version of Mortal Kombat (1992) may have been less impressive graphically due to the system's limited color palette, but some of the music (composed by Matt Furniss) was quite different from its arcade counterpart, and (in many people's opinion) for the better. It also had the blood code.
  • Most fighting games ported to the original Game Boy tended to not play anything like their console or arcade brethren, due to choppy framerates and/or unresponsive controls because of developers trying to emulate the look of the game rather than replicating the gameplay, but some managed to stand out.
    • For the GB port of Killer Instinct, the developers obviously had gameplay in mind first and foremost; they did this by downscaling the characters enough to where you could still make distinctions on who they are without hampering the frame-rate, resulting in fluid, responsive gameplay that played very close to the original version (with the exception of a couple of cut characters and streamlined controls). It helped that the team that worked on the GB version were comprised of programmers who had worked on the arcade and SNES ports, instead of Nintendo handing the job to a third party. Hands-down to one of the best fighting games on the green-screen original GB.
    • The Battle Arena Toshinden Game Boy port is outstanding. While the main games could be seen as a failed franchise, the Game Boy port really deserves more attention, as it is easily one of the best fighting games the Game Boy has. It even managed to get the Ring Out feature on a 2D game without breaking it.
    • The Game Boy port of Samurai Shodown changed the characters to Super-Deformed versions, much as with Battle Arena Toshinden, allowing for the same wide-open screen for leaping about as the original and all of the original moves. They also added in several secret characters such as the referee and the messenger long before the arcade ports allowed them. And gave some kick-ass themes for the characters who originally had atmospheric noises for their stages.
    • The Game Boy version of Mortal Kombat II was a great handheld fighter that played as well as Mortal Kombat II could be on a Game Boy, and quite a surprise after looking at the Porting Disaster that was the original Mortal Kombat on Game Boy.
  • Street Fighter series:
    • A minor example is the SNES version of the first Street Fighter II. Although the character sprites were smaller and less animated, they kept the controls just as tight, and were even able to add the Mirror Match and alternate colors of Champion Edition through a cheat code. Some of the ending artwork were also improved, most notably Eliza (Ken's girlfriend) actually resembles a human being for once, alongside fixing a few additional tidbits (such as correcting Chun-Li and M. Bison's miscolored character portraits, and giving Blanka an unique Death Cry Echo).
    • The early Street Fighter games had a rocky history of being ported to MS-DOS, but the DOS port of Super Street Fighter II Turbo by Eurocom was a step in the right direction. On top of being actually playable, it has visuals on par with the arcade version at the expense of having the game screen zoomed in, and had support for six-button gamepads when most DOS games up to that point only supported one-button joysticks. The DOS version came in two versions: a floppy version with MIDI-quality music and a CD version with remixed music and better keyboard support.
    • While the PlayStation ports of the original Street Fighter Alpha, Alpha 2 and Alpha 2 Gold were pretty solid, they never bothered adding much in the way of extra content, outside from the usual additions of Versus and Practice modes and they tended to pale in comparison to their Sega Saturn counterparts, which were more accurate thanks to the console's extra RAM. For the PS1 port of Alpha 3, Capcom went the extra mile by also adding new characters to the arcade version's roster (bringing back Guile, Fei-Long, T. Hawk and Dee-Jay) and adding a World Tour mode that allowed player to customize their favorite character and save them to a memory card. The Saturn version wouldn't be released until a bit later, while it certainly surpassed the PS port thanks to its use of the 4-Megabyte Extended RAM cartridge, it came out during the Saturn's dying days and was only released in Japan, making it much rarer.
    • The PS4 version of Ultra Street Fighter IV started life as a Porting Disaster, but as of Patch 1.04, it got elevated to this status, having all the positives of the Xbox 360 version and running like the PC version on the highest settings. It even eclipsed said Xbox 360 version in the tournament scene.
  • The Dreamcast port of Marvel vs. Capcom: Clash of the Superheroes. It was a full and complete port of the arcade original, with all the animation, characters, endings, codes, and gameplay intact. As far as game modes, it only adds training and survival, but has a number of small, somewhat subtle additions that really add up. Primarily the fact that by fighting the secret characters in the arcade mode, you can unlock them for use without the rather complex codes from the arcade (which still work here, by the way). Unlocking them all allows the player to actually use Onslaught in a separate game mode—thus giving players the chance to use him while keeping him out of the game proper. The only thing missing is the PlayStation version's 'secret' Mega Man with the Magnetic Shockwave.
  • Cyber Troopers Virtual-ON series:
    • The Xbox 360 port of Virtual-ON: Oratorio Tangram Ver.5.66 has optional HD visuals, tutorials for beginners, and the default control scheme works quite well with the Xbox 360 controller. It also has online play through Xbox LIVE and the color edit feature seen in the Dreamcast version.
    • The PlayStation 2 port of Virtual-ON: Operation Moongate has updated visuals and runs more fluidly than the original (up until the Japan-only HD re-release), improved sound quality, and added a slew of extra modes to play around with, including one where you can play as chibi versions of the Virtuaroids and play as the final boss. Sadly, nobody outside of Japan got this version.
  • The PlayStation version of Psychic Force 2012, titled Psychic Force 2, despite having downgraded visuals from the arcade and Dreamcast version, it features new modes to play around with, including a Psy Expand mode that features RPG Elements that allows players to customize each characters' moveset, and restored Sonia, Brad, and Genma as playable characters. Like the PlayStation port of its predecessor, Psychic Force 2012 also got an Anime Theme Song opening by Hironobu Kageyama, one of JAM Project's founding members. Although never released in North America, it did however see an English release in PAL territories.
  • Skullgirls got a much better port on PC, having the characters' move-list available from the get-go (although this was later rectified in the console versions), online lobbies, more frequent updates than the console versions, and, straight from the developers' mouths, support for every USB controller imaginable. Testing it out with more obscure controllers (including those unsuited for fighters, let alone six button ones) shows that they weren't lying, either.
  • The Model2 Collection re-release of Sonic the Fighters has enhanced visuals for 1080p, online multi-player, and undummied three of the Dummied Out characters that where only accessible through hacking. The undummied characters are Honey the Cat, Metal Sonic, and Dr. Robotnik (in his Mini-Mecha); the latter two of the three are only playable through multi-player through. You can even press the triggers of your controller to listen to the game's music at the main menu, including the unused tracks.
  • Asuka 120% series saw several releases on a couple of consoles and computer systems, but many consider Asuka 120% BURNING Fest. Limited on Sega Saturn the best in the series. It features much better visuals, larger hand-drawn sprites, smoother animations, remixed CD-quality music from the PC Engine version, and faster and refined gameplay.
  • World Heroes:
    • The SNES version of World Heroes 2. The game has most of the graphics intact. A soundtrack that is close to the original in quality. All of the characters are select able. It comes with both the arcade and arena modes. And is overall 85% accurate to the original Neo-Geo version.
    • Unlike other fighting games that suffered when converted to the Neo Geo CD, the series took the translation well. The game's comparatively modest megabyte count made for reasonable loading times and the obligatory arranged soundtracks were very well done. Furthermore, 2 and Perfect received extra content: the former added the ability to play as Neo Dio through a cheat code, while the later added a mode that allowed the player to select bosses Son Goku and Neo Dio without having to input a cheat code to play as them, and added the ability to play as Zeus in VS mode.
  • Rival Schools' PlayStation port came in two disks, both of them with two new characters, extra costumes and Training Mode: while the first one is a fully-voiced Arcade-Perfect Port, the "Evolution" CD contains a rebalanced moveset, extra fighting modes, various school-themed minigames, unlockable extras, and most importantly a Japanese-exclusive Visual Novel mode interlinked with a character creation mode (at the expense of the normal disc's story mode)note . The port's extras were popular enough in their homeland to create a Japan-exclusive sequel which expanded the extra disc's features.

    First-Person Shooter 
  • Quake:
    • The Saturn port was surprisingly competent considering the Saturn's notorious handicap with 3D, featuring all of the content of the original version and much more accurate level geometry than the concurrent Nintendo 64 port. It also has four secret levels not found in any other versions. Part of what makes it such a good port is that it's not even using the original Quake engine - the game was actually based on Lobotomy Software's own Slavedriver engine, also used in PowerSlave and the Duke Nukem 3D port, which could take proper advantage of the Saturn's specs.
    • The 2021 Kex Engine remaster of the first Quake for PlayStation 4 and 5, Xbox One and Series X|S, Switch, and PC not only offers a nearly-faithful experience of the original game, it brings in many improvements that is comparable to playing the game on a source port. It supports widescreen and HD resolutions up to 4K, runs at 60 FPS (or higher on PC, up to 500 FPS), has various graphical settings that allows players to make the game look as retro or modern as possible, it comes the full soundtrack, features fully remappable controls for the console versions plus gyro motion controls on the PlayStation 4 and Switch versions, includes all of the game's official Mission Packs plus an all-new Dimension of the Machine expansion, online multiplayer with crossplay support plus the ability to play local multiplayer with bots, and similarly to the 2019 Unity ports of Doom and its sequel, players can also download and play curated add-ons while PC players can sideload custom vanilla-compatible mods onto the Kex Engine remaster. The downside however is that a account is required for online multiplayer and downloading add-ons.
  • The PlayStation and Saturn version of PowerSlave (Exhumed and Seireki 1999: Pharaoh no Fukkatsu in Europe and Japan, respectively). Although the various version were released together, development started on the PC using the Build engine, best known for powering Duke Nukem 3D. (Odd, isn't it? The version of Build used for PC PowerSlave is even older than that used for Duke Nukem 3D despite releasing after, at that.) Lobotomy then decided to try their luck on consoles, but upon realizing that a straight port was impossible, they developed the Slavedriver engine and ended up making practically another game. While PC PowerSlave is forgettable and has overly long, boring levels, console PowerSlave is one of the best early console FPSes, and loses some nicer textures in exchange for faster and smoother gameplay, full 3D movement, and open-ended levels with new weapons and abilities to discover in order to advance, predating Metroid Prime by over half a decade. Both of those versions served as basis for PowerSlave: Exhumed, the 2022 remaster for PC and modern consoles by Nightdive Studios, which is considered to be the definitive version of the game.
  • Hard Rock Cab, the PlayStation port of Quarantine, proves that the PS1 was indeed capable of running 2D games well: it loads all area sprites in one loading session - without any quality drops - and runs with no "seemingly obvious" lag. This port requires only one memory card slot for five in-game save slots, and you can save everywhere, all on half the memory required by the DOS version. Unfortunately, this port has never been released outside of Japan.
  • Metroid:
    • The versions of Metroid Prime and its sequel was re-released on the Wii as part of the New Play Control! line of Wii re-releases in Japan and included as part of the Metroid Prime Trilogy released elsewhere. Both games had some extra lighting and bloom effects added, 16:9 widescreen presentation, slightly improved textures, doors loaded faster, a New Game Plus feature that retains your logbook entries in subsequent playthroughs, and Corruption-style New Play Control that works beautifully. All of this on one disk only and slightly more expensive than Corruption on its own (until was it re-released through the Wii U's eShop channel, where it is sold in a much cheaper price). The only drawback was that some visual effects had to be removed due to the particle effects on Samus' arm cannon not being programmed to move with the Wii Remote, and the doors in Corruption took longer to load but the latter was fixed for the digital re-release.
    • The Remastered version of Metroid Prime on the Switch has been well praised by fans and reviews with a complete overhaul of the lighting and visuals for an HD look, new modern styled controls that feel comfortable with an option to use the Wii's Motion Control style or the original Gamecube's control style, and new unlockables such as concept art, 3D models, and the soundtrack when you progress through the game.
  • The somewhat odd Xbox port of Half-Life 2. The game takes a major hit to resolution and framerate, but the gameplay is completely intact and feature-complete, and the actual graphics are of a very similar level of fidelity to the PC version. Regardless of the sacrifices made, it's still held up as a very impressive backporting of a technically-demanding game.
  • The Orange Box for Xbox 360 did this to Half-Life 2 and Episode One, bringing the graphical improvements of the shiny new engine to their old games without a hitch. This was the same case for the PlayStation 2 version of Half-Life, with higher resolution models, an entirely new story mode designed for co-op called Decay, a helpful targeting system, the ability to play as a Vortigaunt and a two-player deathmatch mode with most of the original maps.
  • Doom:
    • The PlayStation version is known as the first legitimately good console port during the '90s, combining both Ultimate Doom and Doom II into one game, while additionally featuring new lighting effects (including colored lighting), new and improved sound effects for everything, and changed the rockin' soundtrack for some dark and ambient music that makes it feel like a horror game. While it does have disadvantages due to hardware limitations such as a subpar framerate (though still better than the other '90s ports), simplified and easier maps (as a majority of the maps were derived from the Jaguar port), has some maps removed completely, and other features missing from the PC version such as the lack of Arch-Viles and the Icon of Sin, but the port makes up for it by adding in new visual changes that brings new life to the game's atmosphere, such as skies in the Hell maps being an animated wall of flame, as well as having a few new high quality maps of its own. It also featured Doom II monsters in the original Doom when played on Ultra-Violence to mix up the Ultimate Doom maps. Compared to the technically better console ports, PlayStation Doom offered its own unique experience. The port is so beloved, the Doom community worked together to not only effectively port it to GZDoom with all the modern advantages it would entail, but also worked to recreate all 72 maps that didn't make the original cut in the PlayStation version's style, as well as recreating the No Rest for the Living expansion and John Romero's Sigil, Tech Gone Bad, and Phobos Mission Control maps in a similar fashion. After the port's source code was released to the public in 2020, the community also began working on a reverse-engineered port, providing a faithful yet modern way to experience these games on Windows and MacOS.
    • The Xbox versions of Doom and Doom II included in Doom³: Limited Collector's Edition and Resurrection of Evil are very faithful console ports of the original PC version with an extra secret level added to each game, but has some rare game-breaking bugs. The digital version for Xbox 360, included in Doom 3: BFG Edition, and the Doom Classic Complete compilation for PS3 presents the classic Doom games in a higher native resolution, features higher quality music, online multi-player, and a new "No Rest for the Living" episode for Doom II. However the Wolfenstein levels were censored and the red medical crosses were removed in the HD re-releases.
    • The Game Boy Advance versions of Doom and Doom II have the technical issues of running in a handheld device (less buttons, lower framerate, low-res visuals, altered levels) and some bowdlerization of the blood and gore, and yet ended up as remarkably well-done ports considering the GBA's limitations and impressive additions to the system's library of first-person shooters.
    • While the Nintendo Switch version of DOOM (2016) isn't as technically proficient as the other versions due to the weaker hardware, with it having been downgraded from 60FPS at 1080p to 30FPS at 720p, the game still runs a lot better than one would expect it on the system, and it has all of the DLC. The only content that was cut was the Snapmap feature. Most reviews already hail it as a solid version of the game. The same can be said about DOOM Eternal, even if it didn't benefit a cartridge release.
    • The 2019 Unity ports of Doom I and Doom II by Nerve Software for Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Android and iOS were originally rather poor conversions, including a messed-up aspect ratio (displayed at its original 16:10 aspect-ratio from the DOS version without scaling for 4:3 as intended, stretching the overall image), poor-quality music and sound effects, and most infamously a mandatory login for the "Slayer's Club" features. After the patches, it has gone from one of the worst ports of the classic games ever to being almost comparable to playing the original games on a source port: displaying the visuals and playing sounds properly, bumping the resolution up to 640x400 with the frame-rate raised to 60 FPS, added rumble support for controllers, a weapon carousel to help with weapon management on controllers, and official add-ons that includes both halves of Final Doom for both games, the No Rest for the Living episode for Doom II from the original XBLA port, and SIGIL for Doom I, along with other various curated WADs being released on top of free content updates as well. The 2019 version would later be re-released on PC as well through and later Steam with the ability to side-load custom WADs compatible with the new re-release for the PC and mobile versions. Another update for this suite of ports went even further by introducing official widescreen 16:9 presentation with the option to play in 4:3 like in the original, gyro motion controls for controllers that supported it, variable frame-rate options, toggleable V-sync, a revamped deathmatch multiplayer, a new Ultra-Violence+ difficulty, restored unused features from the original DOS release, and DeHackEd mod support along with other quality-of-life improvements. The only major downside is the multiplayer features are local-only, unless you're playing the Steam version, which can workaround this by using Steam's Remote Play feature to stream the game with other players. This version later appeared on Xbox Store for Windows 10/11,, and Epic Games and the latter added the ability to play all available add-ons on both games.
    • The 2019 re-release of Doom³ by Panic Button (the same team behind the aforementioned Switch port of DOOM (2016)) for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch, although is based on the BFG Edition, offers an experience that is comparable to play the game on PC at its highest graphical settings, running a consistent 60FPS across all systems at 1080p on base PlayStation 4 and Xbox One systems and 4K on PlayStation 4 Pro and Xbox One X. This version of Doom 3 also restores the environmental darkness from the original game and improved the game's loading times compared to the previous generation releases of BFG Edition. The Switch version, however, does suffer from some performance issues but it can be mitigated by lowering the FOV and disabling flashlight shadows. It was later re-released for PC through, Xbox Store for Windows 10/11, and Epic Games Store, but it is missing the multiplayer features similarly to the release of BFG Edition and the developer console was completely removed.
    • The 2020 re-release of Doom 64 for PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Switch, done by Nightdive Studios, is easily the best version of the game. The original game is presented in full, with the original visuals perfectly recreated in HD widescreen, including the N64's unique solution to texture filtering, although you can opt to disable texture filtering altogether to give the game a look akin to the first two games. The frame-rate has been greatly increased (originally 30 FPS with dips in performance, now a locked 60 FPS on consoles and able to achieve up to 1000 FPS on PC, although it could be capped to 30 FPS like in the original), various options including a FOV slider and anti-aliasing options, gyroscope aiming on Switch, rumble support for controllers, and seven brand-new levels, including one that ties the events of the game with those of DOOM Eternal. The Xbox One version of the game also has two interesting traits: the ability to use Mouse & Keyboard, and being the only game on the console that runs above 1080p on the Xbox One S model, and rendering instead at 1440p. note 
  • The PC version of Turok 2 had higher-resolution graphics and better music than the original Nintendo 64 version, plus the ability to save anywhere, although some of the music was cut short to fit the Red Book space on the CD.
  • GoldenEye Reloaded for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 is basically an enhanced port of the Wii version in high resolution and better textures, along with more content.
  • Goldeneye 1997 on Switch and Xbox Game Pass had several teaks made to improve the game over the original Nintendo 64 version. The game itself is upscaled to higher resolution so the game looks smoother on higher resolution screens and the textures were also upscaled so they look much more smooth. Frame rate was also improved by bumping it up to 30 FPS and rarely dips below it. The Xbox version offers a modern control scheme to bring the game on par with modern shooters while the Switch version has online multiplayer.
  • Titanfall for Xbox 360. Sure, the console is far weaker than the Xbox One and PC and a lot of graphical downgrade was made in order to make it run, but Bluepoint Games made an excellent work by keeping the game mechanics intact, while ensuring the game had a minimum of 30 FPS. They even added an unlockable framerate option at the cost of image tearing and DLC support.
  • Borderlands
    • Borderlands had a rough PC port. In response, Gearbox Software [1] responded to PC players and said they would get a better port for the second game. They lived up to everything on the list and more, as one can tell.
    • Borderlands 3 was fairly shaky on PS4 and Xbox One, with some brutal load times, a laggy UI, and noticeable framerate problems. When the game got a (free for existing owners) port to the PS5 and Xbox Series X|S, the load times were massively improved, the UI was incredibly smooth, and the framerate issues were ironed out, with an additional option (except on the Series S) for 120fps. Plus, the 60fps mode ran at 4K, four-player split-screen was added, and Gearbox implemented the ability to transfer save data from the PS4/Xbox One versions.
  • The Xbox 360 remake of Perfect Dark is a substantial upgrade to the original Nintendo 64 game. Not only does the remake have an HD veneer with a consistently smooth frame rate, the game's multiplayer components include online play and weapons from GoldenEye (1997).
  • Halo: The Master Chief Collection... eventually. It contains ports of Halo: Combat Evolved, Halo 2, Halo 3, and Halo 4, with Halo 3: ODST being made available as DLC later on. All games run at 1080p with 60fps (4K on the One X) came with local and online multiplayer (particularly notable with the first two, as Combat Evolved didn't ship with Xbox Live and Halo 2's servers were long dead) and came with the anniversary edition of Combat Evolved (read: a major, optional visual overhaul) and an anniversary edition of 2 created for the collection. There was only one major problem with the collection - it was really, really buggy on release, and the online matchmaking effectively didn't work. It took tons of patches for it to get everything to work to an acceptable level - the big "everything works now, guys" patch came out in 2018, four years after the initial release. By the time The Master Chief Collection also got a PC version in 2019, it ran smoothly and even had the addition of Halo: Reach.
  • The Xbox Serious Sam bundles Serious Sam: The First Encounter and Serious Sam: The Second Encounter together and features improved enemy and weapon models (with the upgraded weapon being enough of an improvement that they were used as the basis for the HD remake rather than the original PC assets), new humorous cutscenes, the chainsaw and Serious Bomb being added to the First Encounter levels (with the flamethrower and sniper rifle also being usable through a cheat code) and new or shuffled set pieces (due to some levels being split in two due to memory limitations) which arguably made for better pacing.
  • At the time of its original release, Nightdive Studios' Blood: Fresh Supply actually was a disatrous port, having many bugs and gameplay inconsistencies compared to the original game, all because Atari didn't want them to work on the game's source code. Fortunately, they quickly patched the game and added new features to make it the definitive way to play Blood: it now supports 4K resolution, has an option for a proper vertical look, an expanded voxel support and difficulty modification, all the base and expansion episodes from One Unit Whole Blood, and is even fully compatible with all the custom content from the original game.

    Hack and Slash 

  • Many ports actually managed to improve on the music from the original version, due to coding it for a different sound chip — even if the actual game engine was not as good. Examples:
    • Any port for which the Follin brothers did sound programming (e.g., Ghouls 'n Ghosts for C64 and Amiga).
    • Contra for the NES is another such port. Despite being on a more primitive sound chip, the music was faster-paced and generally more intense than the arcade version.
    • The Mega Drive/Genesis port of Lemmings arguably has a much more exciting soundtrack than the Amiga original.
    • As mentioned below, Earthworm Jim on PC and Sega CD's Earthworm Jim: Special Edition.
    • The Game Boy port of Bomb Jack definitely qualifies. (Although the music is switched off by default for some crazy reason.)
    • In Monty on the Run, the memorable theme by Robin Hubbard was added to the Commodore 64 and Amstrad CPC versions; the ZX Spectrum original was a 48K game with no music during gameplay.

    Platform Game 
  • Banjo-Kazooie:
    • The Xbox Live Arcade version of the first game is absolutely fantastic. Although a few textures have been arguably downgraded, the game now runs in 1080p HD 16:9 widescreen and has a completely consistent framerate of 30fps. The infamous "Note Score" system was also removed and the notes are now regular collectables that stay collected at all times like in Tooie.
    • The Xbox Live Arcade version of Banjo-Tooie greatly improves the framerate. It usually chugs like the Hindenburg Disaster at times on Nintendo 64 hardware, so the smoothed-out framereate is a godsend here.
    • In both cases, the infamous "Stop 'N' Swop" feature has been fully implemented at last, functioning mostly how it was intended to before. In addition to the rewards previously unlocked in Tooie, the extra eggs from Kazooie also unlock a special Xbox Dashboard and Gamerpic.
  • The Mega Man series has seen some rock-solid ports:
    • Mega Man: The Wily Wars for the Sega Genesis took the original three NES games, updated them with 16-bit graphics and sound, beefed up the difficulty, added a save feature for all three of the games, and, as a bonus, added an all-new game, Wily Tower, as an unlockable. It later received a limited edition re-print by Retro-Bit for North America in 2022 that also ironed out some of the frame-rate issues that occurred in the Japanese release.
    • The Complete Works series of enhanced ports for the PlayStation took the first six NES games and not only gave players the ability to play the original versions of these games for those who missed out on these games the first time around, but also featured a new Navi Mode which gave these games remixed music, real-time weapon switching instead of having to use the pause menu to switch out weapons, a Mission Mode that rewards players with items to power-up Mega Man, selectable difficulty levels, a huge database of characters and enemies featured in each game, memory card saves as well as passwords, a revised HUD and menu system, and a hint system to help newcomers. These ports also fixed the slowdown and sprite-flickering that occurred in the original NES versions of these games. Those with a PocketStation can play mini-games on it to power up Mega Man's and the Robot Masters' stats to make them even stronger. Unfortunately, these ports never got a release outside of Japan until 2011 when they were re-released digitally for PS3 in North America but only for the first four games (getting 5 and 6 will require going through some hoops to import them) which are untranslated. Although the Mega Man Anniversary Collection (PS2, GC, Xbox) has a few of the features of the Complete Works series as well as including other games from the series, each of version of this collection has porting problems of their own and misses many of the extra features, and the later Mega Man Legacy Collection (PS4, XO, 3DS, NS, PC) only contains the original NES version of these games and not their enhanced Navi Mode but it later received an update to include a rewind feature to undo mistakes and a Turbo CPU mode to fix some the slowdowns.
    • The Xbox port of the Mega Man Anniversary Collection, despite the aforementioned issues, was released a few months after the PlayStation 2 and GameCube and has a couple of advantages over them, such as slightly improved picture quality, alternate controller layouts, faster saving and loading times, features both the Keiji Inafune episode of G4TV's Icons and the first episode of MegaMan NT Warrior in place of Mega Man (Ruby-Spears), and slightly fewer emulation/porting issues than the prior versions (at least when played on original hardware).
    • The PlayStation, Sega Saturn, and PC ports of Mega Man X3 enhanced the game with CD-quality renditions of the game's music, a save feature, and anime cutscenes sandwiched in-between. The only issue was the addition of loading times, which were eradicated in the X Collection port of X3.
    • Capcom probably got the hint how badly the outsourced Korean-only PC port of Mega Man X7 by Multi-Enterprise turned out, which was likely why Capcom ported Mega Man X8 to PC themselves. Unlike X7, X8 was handled far better for PCs and was available in multiple languages (though it depends on which release you obtained). It also has higher resolutions settings (up to 1280×1024 although hacks can make it higher), enhanced 3D audio support, mouse support for menus, and supports gamepads (particularly DirectInput controllers). Unfortunately, this version never hit American shores physically.
    • The versions of Mega Man X7 and X8 included in Mega Man X Legacy Collection 2 saw some improvements, which drastically cut down the loading times from their previous PS2 and PC releases, and bumps up the visuals to HD standards, giving these games better picture clarity. Unlike their previous PC releases, their Legacy Collection 2 ports are also available internationally for PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch.
    • The Mega Man Zero Collection for the Zero series introduces an "Easy Scenario Mode" that makes the games easier for beginners while being separate from individual games in the collection for those that prefer the original difficulty. It also fixes the translation errors, adds the ability to use the Y and X buttons of the DS, improves the music quality over their original GBA release, brought over the Japan-only e-Reader feature of Rockman Zero 3 into the international versions, and a slew of unlockable artwork. The 2020 Mega Man Zero/ZX Legacy Collection not only retained many of the improvements from the previous collection, but also adds a Save-Assist feature that implements checkpoints at key areas throughout the games without penalties, the ability to play the western and Japanese versions of each game, and a Music Player featuring music from both Zero and ZX series. The Mega Man ZX series in this collection also gained the benefit of multiple screen layouts for the ZX series' dual screens, upscaled FMVs, and the option to hear the original uncompressed voice-overs.
  • Azure Striker Gunvolt: Striker Pack for the Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4 are easily the definitive versions of both games as they feature HD event graphics, portraits, and skill cut-ins, runs at 60 FPS, bundles all DLCs for Azure Striker Gunvolt 2, backports many of the improvements from the sequel into the first game, includes the new Easy and Hard modes from the Steam port, and redesigns the menu and UI to take advantage of a single screen.
  • Spyro: Enter the Dragonfly was a disaster on the PlayStation 2 (painfully slow frame rates/loading sequences, game-breaking glitches, etc.), but the developers fixed most of the technical issues when porting to the GameCube.
  • Crash Bandicoot: The Wrath of Cortex was let down by ridiculous loading times on the PlayStation 2. The GameCube and Xbox versions cut them significantly. The Xbox port also adds a few graphical and sound enhancements such as fur textures for Crash and Coco and properly looped music while the GameCube port has GBA connectivity to unlock an extra mini-game. The only drawbacks are that both versions lack the original track for Medieval Madness for some reason (playing The Gauntlet's theme instead), and the GCN port in particular has a few graphical glitches. Some time later, the PlayStation 2 version itself had the loading times shortened for its Greatest Hits/Platinum release, as well.
  • In Japan, Akumajou Dracula (the first Castlevania) was re-released on a cartridge (rather than floppy disks) in 1993. This version included an Easy Mode, in which Simon starts with more hearts, lives, and time, takes less damage, doesn't get knocked back, and keeps his Double/Triple Shot items when changing weapons.
  • The unlockable port of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night included in The Dracula X Chronicles added Maria as an extra boss and playable character (re-imagined from the Saturn version in that she performs much like her Rondo of Blood incarnation), some touched-up sound effects, and a semi-rewritten translation complete with a re-dub by professional voice actors to keep consistency with the PSP version of Rondo. This port itself was later ported to the PS4 in Castlevania Requiem.
  • The Castevania Advance Collection includes the three GBA Castlevania games (Castlevania: Circle of the Moon, Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance, Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow) plus the SNES version of Castlevania: Dracula X in one compilation. M2 not only added the expected features such as screen customization, rewind, and save anywhere, but also handy quality of life improvements such as an in-game encyclopedia as well as a gadget showing which shows item and soul/card collection status.
  • Prince of Persia on the SNES blew the original home computer ports out of the water, with incredibly good background music (most of the home computer versions had none!), improved graphics, a password-based continue system, and added levels. The sequel, on the other hand, was farmed out to a much worse developer.
    • The PC-98 version, though a straight port, was such a graphical improvement that Jordan Mechner was impressed. Most subsequent ports would follow it in putting a turban and vest on the Prince's sprite and making the Life Meter a row of potions instead of a row of triangles.
    • Like the SNES version, the Mega Drive version featured background music (unfortunately not for the American version), added passwords, and upgraded graphics. It didn't have extra levels, but it had the most impressive graphics out of all ports, with gorgeous level art and cutscenes, and a lot of extra detail in the animations and level art.
    • The Mega CD version featured revamped graphics, background music, a save system, an extra boss battle with the Vizer, and animated cutscenes.
  • Capcom often did this if they realized a straight port would end up a disaster. The NES version of Strider is a worthy game even compared to the Arcade version by virtue of not being a port at all. It's a separate game using many of the same themes and a story based on the original manga. Only control issues keep it from being a great game.
    • Similarly, the NES version of Bionic Commando completely displaced the arcade original, which was relatively mediocre.
    • The SNES version of U.N. Squadron goes from the linear arcade game to a deep map-based campaign with branching missions, side missions (enemy supply convoys and attacking bombers), and a plane and item shop that let you match any pilot with all the jets from the original and about twice as much besides.
  • Valis: The Legend of a Fantasm Soldier for the PC Engine Super CD was a remake of the original game that had been remade for the Mega Drive not long before. Not only does the PC Engine version have longer cutscenes and better colors, it avoids the hit detection and frame rate problems that plagued the Mega Drive version.
  • The SNES port of Chuck Rock has more colors, multi-layer parallax scrolling backgrounds, and additional sound effects over other versions.
  • Zig-zagged with Conker: Live and Reloaded, which is a bit of a mixed bag. The graphics were highly improved, though they weren't as impressive for the port's era as the original graphics were for their own era. And many subtle improvements were made to the gameplay, such as adding a crosshair to the ranged weapons, tweaking the difficulty in the infamous "It's War" chapter, refining the controls in the hoverboard sections, changing the shooting gameplay to a modern two stick 3rd person shooter layout, having a longer breath meter underwater and various smaller changes that make the gameplay smoother and iron out kinks caused by the limitations of the N64 controller. However, there were also some completely arbitrary changes and outright downgrades; infamously, the game was censored and the original N64 version's highly popular multiplayer modes were replaced with a more generic third-person shooter.
  • While the obscure PC port of Earthworm Jim 1 & 2 didn't do much on the gameplay side (and increased loading times for most machines at the time), the graphics were enhanced along with Red Book audio music, which meant the game discs could be played in a music CD player, and the sound team took advantage of the higher quality. Anything But Tangerines (the first level from the second game) gets a special mention.
    • There are two PC ports — an MS-DOS port published by Interplay, and a Windows 95 port published by Activision. is selling the Interplay DOS version. Hardcore Gaming 101 notes that there are level and graphical differences between the two, but both have the same Red Book soundtrack.
    • In lieu of the PC ports, there's also the Sega CD-exclusive Earthworm Jim: Special Edition, with Red Book audio for the music, much smoother animations than in the SNES port, and the most levels you'll find of any console version of the game, including the exclusive "Big Bruty" level.
    • The Sega Saturn and PlayStation versions of Earthworm Jim 2 are a good example of this. They have the same Red Book audio of the Windows and DOS versions, very polished and professional-looking graphics (more so on the Sega Saturn), and are slightly different and have some minor things added to the game.
  • Funnily enough, Disney's The Lion King backport. Licensed was an Obvious Alpha. Pirated is an Obvious Beta... with about twice the effort put into it.
  • The Sega Genesis version of The Lost Vikings added five new levels, an intro cutscene for each world, three-player simultaneous co-op, and an entirely new tune for the Factory level.note  The Definitive Edition included in the Blizzard Arcade Collection, true to its name, managed to combine the Genesis version's extra levels with the SNES version's graphics.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • The mobile re-release of Sonic the Hedgehog runs in native widescreen, high definition and full 60 frames per second, with Tails and Knuckles as playable characters, a toggle-able spin dash, a Time Trial mode and a seventh Special Stage to unlock each character's Super Mode.
    • Sonic 2 got the same treatment, with a Boss Rush mode, expanded multiplayer and a recreation of the infamous Hidden Palace Zone.
    • Likewise, Sonic the Hedgehog CD got a similar treatment for its 2011 digital release on Xbox 360, PS3, Steam, and mobile devices. The heavily compressed, 64-color animated cutscenes from the Sega CD original were replaced with their full versions, it uses a brand new engine made by Christian "Taxman" Whitehead (which would also later be used for the mobile ports of the first two Sonic games) that fixed numerous bugs from the original version, features Tails as an unlockable playable character, an option to use the Genesis-style spin dash, and also an option to choose between American and Japanese soundtracks.
    • Sonic Adventure and Sonic Adventure 2 were ported to the Nintendo GameCube as Sonic Adventure DX: Director's Cut and Sonic Adventure 2: Battle. Sonic Adventure DX was given a graphical overhaul with 60 FPS gameplay, had bonus missions added, carried over some of the improvements for the Chao Garden from its sequel, and included the ability to unlock the twelve Game Gear Sonic the Hedgehog games, as well as the ability to play as Metal Sonic in Sonic's stages for completing the game 100%. Sonic Adventure 2: Battle received some visual changes, tweaked the treasure hunting stages to have a "!" appear over Knuckles' and Rouge's heads when near treasure, revamped the the 2P Battle mode and it plays at 60 FPS instead of 30, added new features to the Chao Garden. Sonic Adventure DX's and Sonic Adventure 2: Battle's later console and PC ports, however, introduced more issues with each port, such as removing the unlockable Game Gear games in DX or introducing various errors for the cutscenes in Battle, among other issues.
    • Sonic Generations on the PC is the definitive version of the game. Full 1080p visuals and runs on a slick 60FPS (and that is without mentioning the huge modding possibilities). Unfortunately, there are drawbacks: If playing on a non-Xbox controller, Sonic will sometimes start stepping to the left by himself until you restart the game, it has graphical and framerate issues with some video cards that really shouldn't have such issues for the game (especially likely to be encountered in the liquid-heavy Chemical Plant stage) and the system requirements were incredibly high when it was released requiring a top-of-the-line machine.
    • While the graphics were downgraded due to the system not being as powerful as its competitors, as well as the framerate being halved, the Nintendo Switch version of Sonic Forces is otherwise identical to the other versions, but also allows portable play. There are also some (relatively minor) bugfixes that the other versions don't have. Even more impressive is that the developers managed to cut down the filesize by more than half, from around 18GB to just 7GB, while leaving everything intact.
  • The Sega Master System version of Captain Silver has better hit detection and expanded levels, and due to the console's graphical limitations the backgrounds have a less hectic color scheme.
  • Blackthorne got a version for the Sega 32X about a year after the SNES and PC versions, which featured updated stop-motion graphics, uncensored gore, and a new area. The later Definitive Edition in the Blizzard Arcade Collection, while based on the SNES version, added a handy automap feature.
  • Rayman 2: The Great Escape was first released on the PC and Nintendo 64, had some features added in the game for the Dreamcast version released several months later, and was later re-released on the PlayStation 2 a year later as Rayman Revolution, which featured a new hub level, enhanced graphics, level revisions, and several of the features added to the Dreamcast version including some of the minigames and the option for full voiceacting. And, to add to the confusion, a PlayStation 1 version of Rayman 2: The Great Escape was released between the Dreamcast version and the PlayStation 2 version, only this version had only 800 lums, an exclusive minigame, several characters added, and several levels modified or removed altogether.
  • The original Super Monkey Ball is a port of the arcade game Monkey Ball, adding a generous amount of extra content in the form of bonus minigames, Master stages and Gongon as a playable character. The Gamecube port also gives the game a much-needed visual facelift by dividing the stages into themed worlds vs the sparse and generic backfrops of the arcade game (Compare the Beginner course in Monkey Ball and Super Monkey Ball).
    • The unofficial GameCube conversion of Super Monkey Ball Deluxe zigzags this. On one hand, it improves the textures over the PS2 original, restores SMB1's extra stage music and has continuous music in Story Mode. On the other, story mode doesn't contain SMB2 stages, and Ultimate mode has no save feature.
  • When Pitfall II: Lost Caverns was ported from the Atari 2600 to both the Atari 8-bit and Commodore 64 lines of computers, each development team came up with their own superior version of the game. The Commodore 64 team rebuilt the code from scratch and vastly improved the graphics, while the Atari 400/800 team reused the code from the 2600 version, then used the extra time waiting for the Commodore 64 team to finish to make an entire hidden second level that was longer than the original game itself.
  • Turrican, as originally created by Manfred Trenz for the Commodore 64, didn't have much of a soundtrack, since most levels took up too much memory to allow for music. It was the Amiga port, with enhanced graphics and a new soundtrack by Chris Huelsbeck, that made the game legendary. (Turrican II for the Amiga was developed alongside Trenz's C64 version, and was actually released first.)
  • The PlayStation version of Mickey Mania, entitled Mickey's Wild Adventure, took the Sega CD version, greatly enhanced the graphics, amped up the difficulty, and added another new stage, this one having Mickey escaping from a pursuing Willie the Giant.
  • Super Mario Bros.:
    • Super Mario Bros. 2, in addition to being a Dolled Up In Name Only adaptation of Doki Doki Panic, actually got a lot of improvements. Characters can now run, Hit Box Dissonance was reduced greatly, graphics were vastly improved, music was made longer and had an extra sound channel added, comboing enemies (killing multiple with one throw) was made possible, you can swap characters mid-world without losing progress, and there were numerous quality-of-life improvements. So much so that the American version was eventually released in Japan as Super Mario: USA, and went on to be vastly preferred to the original.
    • When Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3 was localized in the US, only 12 e-Reader levels were released for it before the E-Reader was discontinued (Europe didn't get any E-Reader cards for the game...until the Wii U Virtual Console version added savestates and made the formerly Dummied Out E-Reader levels accessible, including the Japan-only levels.
  • The PlayStation 3 version of Crescent Pale Mist localized by Rockin' Android, aside from being playable in other languages, it features revamped graphics, online leaderboards, and a few new features that alleviates some of the frustration of the original PC version such as warp orbs added at key areas that lets you undo your platforming mistakes in some areas for a limited time and plane jumping points of previously explored areas are marked differently than those of unexplored areas.
  • Logistics surrounding how the release was handled aside, the Nintendo Switch version of Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze is the definitive way to play the game, thanks to 1080p visuals and significantly improved load times. The new Funky Mode added to lower the difficulty also helps players frustrated by the difficulty enjoy the game more, but the technical improvements alone make it qualify for this.
  • The 2016 PC port of Ty the Tasmanian Tiger, done by the original developers at Krome Studios, includes upgraded textures, realtime shadows, reflections and other post-processing effects, reprogrammed camera controls, the ability to use the Doomerang during levels, fixing bugs in the original 2002 release, better quality FMV and of course, a smooth 60FPS.
  • The Sega Genesis port of Snow Bros by Tengen. It not only introduced a password system, but also cutscenes, new music, and even an additional 20 levels where you play as the princess that the bros were trying to save.
  • The PSP version of Snowy: The Bear's Adventures is a surprisingly accurate port of the PC game.
  • Pac-Land for the TurboGrafx-16 was an Arcade-Perfect Port of the arcade original, but also adds "Coffee Break" cutscenes similar to the original Pac-Man games, a level select, a togglable control scheme (choose from either the arcade "buttons to move" scheme or a modern "D-Pad to move" scheme) and an actual (albeit basic) ending.

    Puzzle Game 
  • Tetris:
    • The unlicensed version of Tetris on the NES by Tengen, a port of the Atari arcade version.note  It adds several new features, such as the option to select your music of choice, a second rotation button,note  and a co-op mode in which two players share one extra-wide playing field.
    • The version of Tetris on the Genesis Mini released in 2019 is a port of the arcade Tetris game by SEGA that was released in 1988. Built from the ground up by the famous porting team M2,note  it not only stays faithful to the arcade original in every way (seriously, unless you have very keen eyes and ears, it's hard to find any key differences in visuals or audio), it also adds some quality-of-life touches, such as adding clockwise rotation and hard drop functions when the arcade version doesn't have them.
  • The Nintendo Switch version of Part Time UFO adds new levels and game modes, as well as allowing for multiplayer. The upgrade from emulated joystick controls to analog was also marked as an improvement, as players of the original mobile game had some trouble with the control layout.

    Rail Shooter 
  • The House of the Dead: OVERKILL: Extended Cut for the PlayStation 3 includes tons of bonus content, such as new chapters focusing on Varla Guns, a Hard Mode, a swear-censoring option, and lots more. Meanwhile, the PC version The Typing of the Dead: Overkill gets a typing mode as the primary highlight and the actual title of the game (as odd as it sounds, but since The House of the Dead 2 it exists, although as separate game package unlike Overkill) as well as the extended cut of the game playable by mouse.
  • Any time Rez gets a new port, said port adds new things to make the game even better:
    • The PlayStation 2 port raises the gameplay framerate to 60. The Japanese market additionally got a Trance Vibrator accessory that allows players to further immerse themselves in the music.
    • The Rez HD port on Xbox Live Arcade raises the resolution to 720p and adds online leaderboards. While it doesn't support the original Trance Vibrator, it makes up for it by allowing the player to use up to three extra controllers for Trance Vibration.
    • The Rez Infinite port on PlayStation 4 goes up to 4K, improves textures, adds a new Area X mode, and last but not least, supports VR, taking the one-of-a-kind game experience to a whole new level.
    • Infinite for Windows via Steam has everything the PS4 version offers (with Steam VR and Oculus VR taking the place of PSVR), but most of all, it re-introduces mouse control support, something that had only been previously seen in the original Dreamcast game.
  • The Sega Ages port of After Burner II for the Sega Saturn was essentially arcade perfect on both the gameplay and graphic front, and made great use of the Mission Stick controller. While it did not feature extra content, the port feature multiple useful quality-of-life options (such as being able to map the barrel roll to a button to avoid triggering it by accident when playing on a stock controller) and featured the cool bonus of being able to listen to the soundtrack of the obscure first After Burner in addition to the better-known After Burner II soundtrack.
  • The Sega CD version of Starblade (by an uncredited Technosoft) was a damn fine effort. Though quite a bit more primitive-looking than the the later 3DO and Playstation versions, the developer's decisions to go for "ugly" realtime rendering allowed for much smoother, more responsive controls (good when the entire gameplay boils down to controlling a crosshair to shoot enemies) as well as include features from the original arcade game that could not be replicated in those later versions due to their overreliance on streamed FMV backdrops, namely alternate pathsWhat alternate paths?  and functioning boss fight mechanics mechanics (in the 32-bits versions, the bosses always die at the same point, irrespective of how much damage the player has inflicted upon them, in order to keep the FMV in-sync).

    Real-Time Strategy 
  • An incredible example with a bootleg port. Commandos. Just Commandos.
  • Brütal Legend on the PC. The port came out almost four years after the console versions (due to Double Fine not being allowed to make a PC port until EA dropped publishing rights), but it was worth the wait. Due to the game being an RTS, it plays a lot better with a mouse + keyboard setup than it does with a controller. The lack of involvement from EA also means the port does not have the 99% completion glitch.
  • Battle Zone 1998, originally released for Windows 95, suffered greatly under modern operating systems with frequent crashes and copious graphical errors due to it using a graphics wrapper (3dfx Glide) that had been out of development since 2002. In 2011, the original head programmer took the source code and modified it to run properly on modern operating systems, making Battlezone v1.5 run far better and crisper than the original ever did, along with a host of minor and major improvements to alleviate issues such as AI pathfinding.

    Rhythm Game 
  • Guitar Hero 2 was already highly popular on the PlayStation 2, but the Xbox 360 version gave the game not just a visual touch-up, but new guitar controllers, a host of new songs (and optional downloads as Downloadable Content), and a rearranged song order (even though "Psychobilly Freakout" had no change in tier placing), among others. It also widened the allowable gap between frets for hammer-ons and pull-offs just enough to make songs that made heavy use of them tolerable.
  • The Updated Re-release of Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA Mega Mix on Steam, (titled Hatsune Miku: Project Diva Mega Mix+), restores all the tracks that were missing from the Nintendo Switch original, has the option to switch the toon shader on and off (restoring the graphics to how they originally looked in Future Tone), and runs at a full (albeit locked) 60fps (the Switch original only ran at 30fps). On top of all of that, if you have the Steam Deck, you can play it on the go just like the original, but with the aforementioned benefits. While the port does remove the Tap and Mix modes (since both modes were made exclusively with the Switch in mind) and it isn't without its downsides, such as occassional performance issues and the framerate being locked, the pros far outweight the cons in this case.
  • The original Rock Band provides a backwards example. Usually games down-ported from the Xbox 360 to the PlayStation 2 are disasters with low frame rates, long loading times, ugly graphics etc. Rock Band looked like it would be no exception, given that 4 charts can scroll down the screen at once (a novelty at the time), with 4 characters rocking out in the background with more detail than they used in the Guitar Hero games. How did they pull it off? Well, they didn't. They compromised by removing the character editor completely and making a video file for every song of the pre-made characters rocking instead. At the price of having no choice of character (or editor), the game played smoothly with nearly identical graphics (in SD). A less-polished aspect is that the tour was removed and replaced with a simplified version (the same as the solo tour), although some people preferred this tour for having less menus.
  • beatmania IIDX 9th Style was a porting disaster on its arcade version (and that's porting as in, porting to a new Windows-based engine from the PlayStation-derived "Twinkle" hardware used up to 8th Style) and was full of bugs. The PlayStation 2 version did not share any of these issues.
  • jubeat plus / jukebeat for iOS. Unlike the current arcade version, jubeat saucer, jukebeat won't periodically delete your songs.
  • Reflec Beat Plus, also for iOS, adds a local two-player mode, allowing two players to battle it out on one iPad rather than having to use their own devices.
  • Parappa The Rapper gotten two enhanced ports from the Playstation version. The PSP port gotten smoother visuals and added alternate soundtracks for each stage while the Playstation 4 port cleaned up the visuals further, added 4K support, and added features to help players get the timing of the button presses down when playing.
  • VOEZ's Nintendo Switch port is recommended by many fans of the game due to switching out the microtransactions model with just paying once for the entirety of the game's content and not requiring the device to be connected to the Internet to play. It also adds controller play and docked mode, for those who don't want to use the touchscreen.

  • The iPad port of FTL: Faster Than Light includes both the vanilla version and Advanced Edition and tweaks to the interface to accomodate tablet gameplay, allowing players to smoothly transition from the PC version to a device about the size of a sheet of paper.

    Role-Playing Game 
  • The GameCube port of Skies of Arcadia added more discoveries, reduced the high encounter rate in relation to the original Dreamcast version, and added several fun sidequests that do a great deal to explain The Dragon's motivation as well as character backstory. Unfortunately, it also suffered some regressions, some of them being a result of the GameCube's limitations: the music's quality was vastly inferior as Sega had to use a different sound engine and didn't do a great job of it,note  Pinta Quest was removed due to the lack of VMU (and the GC to GBA feature not being a good enough replacement, as the GBA doesn't retain data transferred from GC after being turned off), the lighting was downgraded, and there was no way of playing the game with the amazing picture quality of the Dreamcast's VGA output.
  • Odin Sphere: So much so that Leifthrasir easily outclasses the original game in numerous ways and most class it as a Video Game Remake. 1080p, 60 FPS, numerous amounts of new or redrawn artwork that makes the game even more gorgeous, and a complete overhaul of the battle system that transforms it from a slow-paced action game into a much faster hack-and-slash (or shoot-em-up in Mercedes' case). It even fixes numerous issues like streamlining the leveling and food systems to be far less obtuse and bloated, to the point of getting quick food safe rooms throughout areas to level mid-dungeon instead of leaving the whole dungeon to go chow down. And in case one prefers the original Odin Sphere setup? Classic Mode has all the original game design intact.
  • The Last Remnant was a sorta-decent game on the Xbox 360. The PC port fixed a lot of the bugs, smoothed out crafting, and removed the hated "Leader" designation, which restricted players from using most of the most powerful characters.
  • The Final Fantasy series has a history of high quality ports:
    • The original Japanese version of Final Fantasy IV was pretty good, but the American localization for the SNES suffered from a bad translation. The PSP version proves to be a port of a port (specifically, of the GBA version), but with greatly improved graphics, removed lag, a choice between the SNES and DS soundtracks, and a number of bug fixes. It lacks anything introduced to the DS version besides a few translation changes.
    • The Steam/smartphone version of Final Fantasy IX has been refined in just about every way. The graphics are much higher resolution than their native PS1 counterparts (albeit with backgrounds that are still the same), and the FMV cutscenes can now be skipped. In addition, Square Enix added several game boosters which are Purposefully Overpowered, including "all attacks hit the damage cap," "always in Trance," and "no encounters." You even get the ability to reach the level cap instantly with a menu option. However, all of the game boosters are optional, so you can still play the normal way. Finally, there's a button that greatly increases the game speed while the game's clock still runs in real time, making the insane "reach this one spot in less than 12 hours to get the Excalibur II" sidequest a bit more feasible, as well as letting you breeze through anything you don't want to watch. In short, whether you want to Play the Game, Skip the Story or Enjoy The Story, Skip The Game, there's something for you in this port.
    • Final Fantasy: In Japan, the original NES game received an MSX2 port in 1989. It suffered from (relatively brief) load times and a lack of smooth scrolling, and the Black Belt class was significantly nerfed, but it also featured improved graphics and sound. The PlayStation remake in Final Fantasy Origins updates the game with considerably better sounds and graphics, though suffers similar loading problems. This remake was later refined considerably in Dawn of Souls for the GBA: reducing loading times, allowing the player to save anywhere, and adding in 4 whole new dungeons complete with new enemies and having bosses from other Final Fantasy games. In turn, this port was taken to the PSP; the graphics were improved even more and another new dungeon was added, though many seem to prefer the GBA version due to it being on a more liked console and the PSP version's dungeon not being terribly memorable.
    • Final Fantasy X and Final Fantasy X-2 both received HD remasters on the PlayStation 3, with higher-quality character models, textures that were also bumped up in quality, and a completely remastered soundtrack. The PlayStation 4 version boosted the visuals a bit further while also enabling players to switch between the remastered soundtrack and the original soundtrack. Finally, the two games were also ported to Steam with the same enhancements as their console counterparts and giving booster options such as max gil, learn all abilities, boost encounter rates (or turn them off entirely), boost game speed, and more. Most importantly, the Steam edition finally implements the ability to skip cutscenes, albeit only FMV ones. Many of these enhancements were carried over to the Xbox and Switch versions.
    • The PlayStation 4 HD port of Final Fantasy XII does a lot of the same things as the HD port of X/X-2 and changes the game balance to make it easier. The PC version adds an increased framerate, New Game Plus and New Game Minus, the option to choose between 3 different versions of the soundtrack recorded over the years, and max license points and Gil. Most of these were carried over to the Xbox and Switch ports of the game, with the Xbox One X version also allowing you to increase the framerate to 60FPS.
    • Intergrade, the PlayStation 5 port of Final Fantasy VII Remake, refines the game in just about every way; the already short load times are even shorter, the visuals and gameplay are touched up really well, performance is improved, and you even get a photo mode and bonus DLC as part of the package!
  • The DS version of Chrono Trigger adds some new weapons, New Game Plus sidequests, and an extra superboss, which ties the game in with Chrono Cross. It also keeps the anime-style cutscenes from the PlayStation port and polishes some game mechanics. The translation was also redone from its original Japanese, which removed some Woolseyisms and inaccuracies. It was also finally released in Europe!
  • The original Sid Meier's Pirates!, originally a Commodore 64 game, got a huge graphics and music upgrade when it was ported to the Amiga.
  • Might and Magic: Secret of the Inner Sanctum on the Nintendo Entertainment System was far more playable than the original Apple II/PC versions.
  • The PSP version of Persona 3 is Persona 3 with most of the gameplay elements of Persona 4 refined to perfection, and the ability to choose the gender of the main character. There's also a few new Social Links around, and some cameos from Persona 4. Also, you now have full control over your party, like in P4, and the "condition" mechanic has been revised to be more friendly to longer dungeon trips. And for anyone who's concerned that all of these new elements make the game too easy, don't worry; Maniac difficulty is added to challenge players once again. It does have to make some compromises to accomodate the PSP's weaker hardware like turning the city exploration from fully 3D to 2D point-and-click maps, as well as changing cutscenes to use a more Visual Novel-style presentation with static character portraits, but many players consider it a fair or an outright negligible tradeoff for the quality-of-life enhancements.
  • The first version of Golvellius, developed by Compile on the MSX, was a nice game already (it's basically a Zelda clone with some neat elements added, like side-scrolling dungeons) but had extremely bland graphics and sound. Sega remade it on the Sega Master System with much better graphics, a completely new layout for dungeons and overworld, and some additions like mid-dungeon bosses. Compile took note and made the definitive version (often incorrectly referred as Golvellius 2) for the MSX2: different storyline, awesome intro and ending screens, graphics similar to the Master System version but less cartoonish, and yet another complete renewal of overworld and dungeons.
  • The MOTHER portion of MOTHER 1+2. It took the myriad polishes and extra features of the English prototype, which was widely known as EarthBound Zero before it was officially released as EarthBound Beginnings in 2015 (simultaneously confirming said prototype's legitimacy over a decade before it was officially released to the public), polished its rough edges further, added more convenient controls in line with those of EarthBound, resulting in something of a superior product to both prior versions. The EarthBound portion, on the other hand, wasn't quite so lucky. Clyde "Tomato" Mandelin, who helmed the fan translation of Mother 3, translated the Mother portion of the game, though the lower quality of the Mother 2/EarthBound port is only half of why he didn't fully translate that part (the other half being 2's needlessly complicated text display system, which resembles a scripting language instead of being plain text).
  • The FM Towns port of Ultima VI added voice acting in both English and Japanese, as well as digital sound effects to replace the PC speaker sound effects of the original version.
  • The PC port of Mass Effect improved the much-despised Mako tank sequences, giving you better control with a keyboard and mouse than you ever had with an Xbox controller. Depending on the speed of your system, it also decreases the Loads and Loads of Loading. It's not without its flaws, though: On launch the game suffered several issues related to hardware and firmware variations. There's a rumor that BioWare only tested the port on one set of hardware and drivers. However performance is non-issue despite several apparently hard-coded slowdowns.
    • The PC port of the second and third game are increasingly better, with both having better visuals and optimized performance (to the point that graphical options are very small beyond resolution and very basic shadows, vsync, and film grain settings) than the first game while looking better, and despite Mass Effect 2 PC port was plagued by two jarring issues in which button prompts/tutorials not changing to mapped keys and default mouse acceleration/sensitivity issues (that can only be fixed by modifying a game file with external tools), Mass Effect 3 PC port fixes those two issues.
  • The 2021 HD remaster of Sa Ga Frontier does more than simply give the game a graphical facelift: it also reintroduces features that were Dummied Out of the game's original release, including additional scenes for Asellus's campaign and an eighth main character, Fuse.
  • Hack Up the Monster, Steal Its Treasure, and Proceed On to the Next Room languished for 20 years as a PC BASIC implementation of 1st Edition AD&D in which you couldn't even earn experience levels. When it was ported to a modern Windows platform, it was vastly improved into version 2.0, which added level gains, multi-classed characters, characters with two classes, a huge catalog of monsters, non-spell class abilities, spells through 4th level, and monster-vs-monster combat.
  • The PC port of Jade Empire features new weapons, new enemies, new fighting styles, a harder difficulty setting, and improved AI. Although Monk Zeng was the Collector's Edition exclusive character on Xbox (and later downloadable for running on Xbox 360).
  • Eternal Sonata was originally released on the Xbox 360 and then ported to the PlayStation 3 with extra playable characters, more plot, and additional costumes for the characters.
  • The Wonderswan port of The Final Fantasy Legend fixed many issues that plagued the original Game Boy release, including bugs and interface issues that made Save Scumming a practical necessity in the original version.
  • Tales of Graces was ported to the PlayStation 3 as Tales of Graces f. The expansion not only featured an additional story about half as long as the main plotline, but it also provided interesting Character Development for the game's Mysterious Waif. In addition to that, there was many a Game-Breaking Bug that was fixed in the port, including one that would otherwise make replaying it next to impossible. It was this version that was ultimately ported to the West as a PS3 exclusive.
  • Tales of Innocence was remade for the Play Station Vita as Tales of Innocence R. Changes include a new battle system, a new system for learning abilities, touchscreen support, updated graphics, a new opening song, more anime cutscenes, and two new party members that are integrated into the storyline. Neither version has been released in Western countries, in contrast to how Tales of Hearts was Remade for the Export as Tales of Hearts R.
  • The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings was ported to the Xbox 360 as the "Enhanced Edition". Barring lower graphical fidelity and visuals, this version made many significant improvements over the PC original. The controls were revised for the controller and introduced a new tutorial that thoroughly explained the mechanics of the game. The port also tweaked the game's difficulty curve of the prologue mission, meaning that players would no longer have to worry about being stuck as a result of attacks being interrupted mid-swing by an enemy hitting Geralt from the side. As if that wasn't enough, people who purchased the port received a game guide, a world map, concept art, interviews, a soundtrack, four hours of additional gameplay, and a code to redeem a separate PC copy from GOG.
  • Baldur's Gate saw an upgraded re-release in 2012, for the PC, Mac, and iPhone platforms, under the title of Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition. This version featured several bug fixes, new characters/quests/items, the contents from the Tales of the Sword Coast included, addition of character sets from Baldur's Gate 2 and a graphical makeover to support current-generation resolutions. Unfortunately, it also introduces some minor bugs, and there's still no news of an announced Android version.
  • Secret of Mana was ported to iOS and Android with an interface designed to take advantage of the touch screen: Instead of using an on-screen D-pad to navigate through menus, you just touch your choice like you would a native iOS or Android app. Also, Square Enix fixed a number of bugs. Sadly, multiplayer was cut, although there is always hope it will be added in an update.
  • Muramasa Rebirth for the PlayStation Vita takes the original Wii title and gives it updated visuals, an improved localization courtesy of Aksys Games (the same folks that brought you the BlazBlue series), and customizable controls (including an independent Jump button).
  • The first Fable was ported to PC and Mac as Fable: The Lost Chapters with remappable controls, smoother frame-rate, video settings that help the game look gorgeous, a mouse-driven interface that makes the game's menus more intuitive, and a wealth of new content added into the game (more quests, new equipment, more enemies, new regions, etc.).
  • Quest: Brian's Journey, the GBC version of Quest 64, ended up being a much better version of the game. The two versions were essentially the same, but with two glaring differences: Brian's Journey had fully complete areas and cutscenes beyond the opening/ending! It's quite an improvement from 64, since the basic story of the game is actually explained and areas aren't as empty-looking.
  • Trails Series: Any PC port done by the localization team XSEED Games is guaranteed to be better than its original release.
    • The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky trilogy have excellent modern ports. While the original games were released on Japanese home computers to begin with, this was done circa 2004 to 2007 on software that was already outdated by the time FC came out. While the programming team faced a very Troubled Production, it was holy worth the results. The game uses HD assets from the PlayStation 3 version, includes battle lines from the PSP port, restores censored content in The Third from the aforementioned port, has an expanded and recompiled lighting engine with upgraded draw distance and shadows, offers wide screen support, a completely customizable remapping launcher, patched in several minor improvements to the translations, and runs easily on even the weakest modern laptops at 60FPS and 1080P.
    • The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel: The port was enhanced by Peter "Durante" Thoman of Dark Souls and Tales of Symphonia fame who fixed their infamously broken ports, and he brings his A-game here. The sheer amount of improvements are covered in three blog entries, but to summarize: The graphical engine was redone from the ground up to include full screen support, an unbroken 60FPS with 30 and unlimited options, revamped menus that now include unmodified HD character art, shadow effects that now render on every background object that can be adjusted, a much, much larger draw distance with better lighting, resolution settings up to 4K, ultra wide screen support that can handle theoretically any monitor known to man, customizable key rebinding, three custom shortcuts, decompressed the textures from the Play Station Vita original, and perhaps most impressively, a turbo feature that speeds up the game's animations by four times their speed without effecting music, sound effects, button prompts, or voice acting. And on that note, XSEED Games included 5000 new lines of dialogue for the main character where he'd previously gone unvoiced, and brought back cast members to rerecord parts of the script. As if all of that wasn't enough, there was even some more stuff that was fixed in patches after the game was released, including almost all instances of Spell My Name with an S errors seen in signs throughout the game, such as the infamous "Train Militaly Police" and "jelato" instead of "gelato."
    • The localized release of The Legend of Heroes: Trails from Zero and Trails to Azure for PC and Nintendo Switch are also being handled by Durante's company. According to a trio of blog posts regarding the port of Zero, the game now properly supports variable resolutions on PC, from the 800p screen of the Steam Deck to the 21:9 ultrawide setup, increased draw distance, updated graphical assets, sprite shadows from the PlayStation Vita version, and quality of life changes inspired from the Geofront Fan Translation of the Chinese PC version.
  • The Nintendo Switch port of South Park: The Fractured but Whole has a small, but still interesting difference compared to the other console releases: while the PS4 and Xbox One versions of the game have only the English audio track on disc and requires an internet connection for foreign languages, the Switch version has all the audio tracks on the cartridge.
  • Almost any remake of a Dragon Quest game is considered much better than the original game. Usually thanks to polished gameplay, better graphics, excellent translation work, and often a large amount of additional content.
    • Dragon Quest III received a Game Boy Color port that, in spite of the hardware being just slightly more powerful than the NES, plays almost exactly like the stellar (and Japan-exclusive) Super Famicom port, including a remake of the opening animation, animated enemy sprites, and the Pachisi minigame.
    • The Switch version of Dragon Quest XI lives up to its moniker of being the Definitive Edition; while the graphics are only slightly downgraded compared to the PlayStation 4 original, it adds new story scenes to flesh it out even more, the choice between English and Japanese voice tracks, as well as both the MIDI and orchestral soundtracks, and even includes the (otherwise Japan-only) 3DS version's 16-bit mode. This version would later get a re-release for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC via Steam and Epic Games Store.
  • The World Ends with You received an enhanced port for iOS and Android as Solo Remix, which, as the subtitle implies, features a tweaked combat system built for a single screen, along with updated graphics, music tracks from Kingdom Hearts 3D [Dream Drop Distance] along with some new ones, and online multiplayer for Tin-Pin Slammer. The mobile version later served as the basis for the Nintendo Switch version, dubbed Final Remix, which further bumps the updated graphics to HD standards, can be played in handheld or tabletop/docked modes with the Joy Cons, adds co-op multiplayer and a brand-new "A New Day" chapter.

    Shoot 'em Up 
  • Battle Garegga:
    • The Sega Saturn port has been hailed as being arcade-accurate, allowing the selection of the Mahou Daisakusen guest characters without a code, allowing resetting of rank simply by opening the options menu instead of resetting the game,note  a unique control scheme for experimenting with autofire rates, and last but not least, a choice between the original game soundtrack or an arranged soundtrack. Basically, if you can't get your hands on the PCB, this is the next best option, and some would argue that it's an even better one.
    • The Battle Garegga Rev.2016 port for Xbox One and PlayStation 4 is even better, having been developed by M2 of Mushihime-sama Futari and the 3D Classics series fame. It has most of the Saturn has, along with many ways to tweak the game experience such gadgets for displaying important real-time data, as a Super Easy mode, a custom mode that lets you change individual elements of the game (such as disabling the Dynamic Difficulty system), an arrange mode, and four soundtrack options (arcade original, Saturn arrange, arcade remastered, and 2016 arrange).
  • The Steam version of Beat Hazard Ultra features a real-time news system through RSS and social feed through Twitter (optional), and access to internet radio. The Shadow Operations Unit DLC also adds extra ships and the ability to create your own. The retail PC version of the original game by THQ plays much like original Xbox Live Indie Games version but with the addition of extra songs and the unlockable Suicidal difficulty.
  • The home ports of Castle of Shikigami III gained new features such the option to using an arranged version of Castle of Shikigami II's soundtrack, the ability to use TATE (vertical) mode, a re-balanced Director's Cut mode, a Boss Rush mode, and a Dramatic Change mode wherein one player play use a team of two characters and swap them on the fly during gameplay. The Wii and Xbox 360 versions also have a Gallery with a slew of unlockable artwork, an unlockable Juke Box feature, and an Extra Options feature where various game settings can be changed outside of the normal gameplay; the latter also has online leaderboards.
  • Fire Shark on the Genesis / Mega Drive is regarded as an improvment over the arcade version. Ported by Toaplan themselves (as opposed to past Toaplan game ports which were outsourced to third-party developers, often with mixed results), it stays faithful to the arcade original, and while it uses the mechanics of the 1-player version (including the use of respawn checkpoints), it comes with a much more reasonable difficulty curve, even when set to Normal difficulty (the default is Easy). It also has a built-in autofire function, so that players don't have to wear out their thumbs playing the game. About the only real downside is that due to being based on the 1P variant, there is no two-player co-op mode unlike the 2P builds of the arcade game. For those who missed out on this port in its heyday, it is also available in the Hishou Same! Same! Same! Compilation Rerelease (along with the arcade original and Sky Shark) for PS4 and Nintendo Switch, albeit as DLC.
  • The NES port of Toki used smaller sprites and much more of the screen was visible at a time. This greatly reduced the number of cheap deaths in the game.
  • Soviet Strike is practically the only Electronic Arts game that turned out better on the Sega Saturn than the PlayStation. Framerate is roughly the same, but the Saturn version has more detailed textures and even boasts a few new wingtip weapons. It also controls very well with the Mission Stick. The only downside is that the Saturn version cut some of the non-plot critical video clips.
  • The Amiga version of Desert Strike was obviously a labour of love for the porting team. The sounds were redone, which included adding radio chatter in the title sequence, and a pleasant female voice notifying the player during missions of important information. A good deal of the graphics was redone, and it added a good deal of background flavour, such as wrecked vehicles strewn on roadsides and oases in the desert. Probably the most fondly remembered change was that the pitiful and cartoony explosions of the original were changed to mushroom clouds accompanied by a mighty sound and the entire screen flashing white for a split-second.
  • The PC port of ESCHATOS gives the game higher resolution visuals than the Xbox 360 version, with many extra visual options available from the start instead of unlocking them through gameplay. The PlayStation 4 and Switch ports would go onto improve things further with updated graphics, a remastered soundtrack, more bugfixes, and non-existant loading times, while bundled with Judgment Silversword and Cardinal Sins similarly to the Xbox 360 version.
  • Gradius:
    • Those who have played both the original arcade version of III and its SNES port typically regard the latter to be superior, save for the much greater slowdown, and a much more forgiving challenge.
    • Gradius II on the PC Engine is a very fine and accurate port of the original, to the point where it uses Red Book audio for the soundtrack, and it adds a new stage. Considering that arcade-to-console ports around its time often had to compromise elements from the arcade version to fit within system limitations, this is saying something.
    • The Famicom port of Gradius II goes the Pragmatic Adaptation route, featuring unique stage layouts and environments, vertically-scrollable stages (an impressive technical feat given that the NES's and Famicom's hardware are natively only designed to scroll horizontally or vertically but not both at once), up to four Options available on-screen at once (Gradius and the non-Japanese release of Life Force/Salamander on the same platform only allows two Options at once, and the Japanese version of the latter allows three) with a rotating-Option powerup available once all four Options are active, and original music tracks not found in the original arcade version. Unfortunately, this requires the aid of an expansion chip that can't be used with the NES due to relocating two of the necessary pins, so it's Japan-only.
  • The Xbox 360 port of Ketsui fixes some Game Breaking Bugs present in the original, such as the music playing at half speed in Stage 5 and the screen momentarily freezing right before DOOM.
  • After the port of Battle Garegga, M2 has done it again with Ketsui Deathtiny, which is not only practically arcade-perfect, but also adds in a "Super Easy" mode, an exclusive arrange mode in "Deathtiny", arcade challenges to practice in specific areas of stages, the 2007 IKD arrange previously only available for one day in a 2007 Cave festival, and a custom mode to mix and match these modes along with four soundtrack options (The Original arcade version, the Basiscape arrange made for the Xbox 360 port, the Virt arrange made for DoDonPachi DaiFukkatsu Black Label's Ketsui Arrange Mode, and a completely new arrange by Daisuke Matsumoto). It's regarded by enthusiasts as not only one of M2's finest parts, but one of the best shmup ports in existence.
  • The Sega Dreamcast version of Mars Matrix is a nearly Arcade-Perfect Port (it runs at a slightly higher screen refresh rate and has some differing score values, but these are nitpicks) and features a generous suite of extra contents. This include extra autofire inputs for both the regular and burst shots (good for people that didn't like the "one button does everything" philosophy of the original release), two Arrange Mode, a shop system where player can use their score to purchase various extras such as artwork, superplay videos for each individual levels and gameplay modifier that allows one to tweak things such as how fast the shield regenerates or how long a chain lasts before being reset. And for competitive players, it is considered superior to the arcade original simply because it adds extra digits to the score counter, as the arcade version can easily be score-capped by a good player.
  • The Xbox 360 ports of Mushihime-sama Futari, Espgaluda II, and Death Smiles all have "Xbox 360" modes with much higher-resolution sprites. They also come packed with "Black Label" versions (except in the case of Futari; you have to pay an extra $15 for it), a blessing in the case of Futari and DeathSmiles considering that their respective Black Label arcade releases had very limited print runs.
    • DeathSmiles's 360 mode, which in other CAVE ports is typically just an HD version of the game it's a port of, allows the player to select Level 1 on every stage (instead of locking it out after a few stages), allows selection of Casper and Rosa without having to enter a code, and rebalances the characters—Windia in particular has been upgraded from a Low-Tier Letdown to a play-worthy character.
  • Radiant Silvergun was originally on arcades and was ported to the Sega Saturn with an extra Saturn mode that adds anime cutscenes to flesh out the engrossing plot, more boss battles and hidden dogs, and the ability to save your weapon power for subsequent playthroughs. It also has an unlockable Options+ feature that allowed you to change the ship or game speed, and show the hitboxes during gameplay. The Xbox 360 port later gave the game optional higher resolution visuals with bloom and HDR lighting, leaderboards, shareable replays on Xbox Live, and for those with at least one Achievement from Ikaruga, the ability to play the game with its spiritual successor's chaining mechanics. The anime cutscenes were also remastered, but unfortunately the Xbox 360 version runs in a 16:9 aspect-ratio yet pillar-boxed in 4:3 and it does not crop the screen to the latter for those with non-widescreen displays, and the Story Mode no longer allows continues from losing lives unlike the Sega Saturn version.
  • Raiden III and Raiden IV: Overkill for the PC comes with bonus content and unlockable incentives to keep replaying the games after beating them.
  • RAY Series:
    • RayForce (Galactic Attack in North America or Layer Section in Japan) on Sega Saturn not only retains the visuals of the arcade release, it also took advantage of the CD-ROM's storage space to produce new renditions of the arcade version's memorable soundtrack with instruments and greatly improved upon the overall quality of the game's soundtrack. It also features the ability to rotate the game screen vertically for those with rotatable displays, allowing the game to be played in the vertically-oriented aspect-ratio like in the arcade version.
    • RayStorm and RayCrisis on PC runs on higher resolution than the arcade version with more audible sound effects than the PlayStation version. Although the PC ports of these games were made for Windows 95/98, they run quite well on modern operating systems and those with higher-end systems (unless you're on Windows 8 or 8.1 which runs poorly due to poor support for older DirectX games) have the benefit of almost non-existent loading times. The downside of these ports however that RayStorm requires the disc to run it and lacks the optional TANZ remixed soundtracks for Extra Mode due to being a port of the arcade version instead of the PlayStation version, while RayCrisis' PC port is based on the PlayStation version, which lacks the co-op multiplayer the original arcade version had.
    • This series received mobile ports on iOS, Android, and Amazon devices, which presents these games with higher resolution graphics, features an optional remixed track for their first stage (the Amazon versions also have one for their second stages as well), and touch controls that work beautifully for these games, but they have also been updated to support traditional Bluetooth-supported controllers for those who prefer standard controls. This was also the first time that RayCrisis got a home port based off its arcade version, retaining its seamless transitions between stages yet brought over the Special Mode (as Remix Mode) from the PlayStation version to compenstate for the lack of multiplayer features. However, due to being based of their arcade counterparts, these versions also lack the unlockables the console ports of the later two games had, RayStorm does not have individual difficulty sliders for each stage, and in the case of the Amazon versions, are lacking online leaderboards and achievements while RayCrisis has yet to see a release on Amazon devices.
    • M2's Ray'z Arcade Chronology compilation for PlayStation 4 and Switch brings arcade-accurate ports of the entire RAY series plus HD ports of the latter two games with all of the enhancements of their ShotTriggers line of ports. This collection features optional real-time gameplay data gadgets, multiple rapid-fire modes, quick saves and automatic save states, screen scaling options with TATE or YOKO display modes for RayForce, optional CRT and smoothing filters, interchangeable original arcade and arranged console soundtracks, online leaderboards and shareable replays, and customizable controls, including separating the Smart Bomb combo to a dedicated button in the latter two games.
  • Smash TV was an arcade game that was notorious for being Nintendo Hard. The home version wasn't exactly easier, but with unlimited continues meaning you could play it without spending a fortune in quarters, it was certainly more enjoyable. One feature it has over the arcade original is an actual soundtrack; in a developer interview, the sound engineer for the arcade game was instructed not to put too much effort into the music since the game's constant gunfire and explosions would drown it out anyway.
  • Soukyugurentai was ported to the PlayStation, and while it had some degraded visuals and more slowdown compared to the arcade-accurate Sega Saturn port, it featured an Arcade Mode and Special Mode, the latter of which added a fourth playable ship, a new final stage, voiced narrations, and new FMV sequences. The PlayStation port also supports the DualShock controller.
  • Twinkle Star Sprites got a Sega Saturn port that included both the original arcade version in "Arcade Mode" and an updated "Segasaturn Mode" that features fully voiced dialogue, the option to turn off the slowdown, made every character playable in Character Mode without inputting a special code for the hidden ones, and added a new character to the roster, but the in-game dialogue suffers from weaker audio quality and the game loads often. The Saturn version also included a bonus disc bundled with artwork (both official and fan-submitted), a karaoke, and special messages from the characters. It later got a Dreamcast port which lacks the additions and bonuses the Saturn version had but does have higher quality audio, non-existent loading times, better frame-rate, and is playable in English. Unfortunately, both console versions were never released outside of Japan.
  • Of the four ways to play Dariusburst Another Chronicle on a consumer platform (PC, PS4, Vita, PSTV), the PC version is perhaps the best one, being the only one with dual-monitor support. (It helps that the arcade version uses PC-based architecture to begin with.) Later updates added the option to quickly restart from the beginning of the chosen root stage in Original or EX mode or the beginning of the mission in Chronicle Mode, so you don't have to go back to the title screen and navigate the menus all over again.
  • DELTAZEAL, the Xbox 360 and PC port of G-Stream G2020, patches up some serious Obvious Beta issues of the original game, including the notoriously bad audio quality.
  • sora was re-released through Steam by Fruitbat Factory in 2016, which not only gave this game a faithful English localization, it also gave the game some quality-of-life improvements such as high-resolution visuals, native keyboard remapping, and improved controller support. acceleration of SUGURI 2 got a similar treatment in 2018 with full widescreen presentation and an online lobby system similarly to their overseas release of 100% Orange Juice!. Despite being released through Steam, these games are also DRM-agnostic, meaning they can be played without having to run and log into Steam's client to play them offline.
  • The PC/Steam version of Space Invaders Extreme is a good mix of the DS and 360/PSP versions, combining the DS version's ZUNTATA soundtrack with the PSP version's single-screen interface. It also adds a wave counter, which lets you know how much further until the end of the stage, nerfs Nagoya Attacks by reducing the multiplier tenfold so that the optimal strategy is no longer "draw out waves until enemies drop to the last row", and adds some other quality-of-life touches.
  • The PS4 and Switch versions of ESP Ra.De.. It's part of the M2 ShotTriggers line so you already know that its development was taken very seriously. It features fully remappable controls, an Updated Re-release mode that adds updated voice acting and a new True Final Boss, the M2 Gadgets that provide expanded real-time information, an "Arcade Osarai" mode that focuses on fulfilling short-term objectives, and an "Arcade Challenge" mode that basically serves as a practice mode where every time you get hit, the game rewinds a few seconds so you can practice the segment you just messed up on (and an optional "Sparta Training" toggle forces you to do it correctly 3 times so you can better learn from your mistakes).
  • The PC version of Yar's Revenge (2011) features support for higher resolutions than the Xbox 360 version, and plays well with keyboard and mouse controls. Unfortunately, the PC version doesn't make it clear that there are settings that can be tweaked with a hidden configuration menu with the -configure command-line parameter, and does not support keyboard or controller remapping whatsoever. It's also possible to play the PC version at 60 FPS by editing one of the game's configuration files, allowing the game to play smoothly compared being locked to 35 FPS on the Xbox 360 version, but raising it too high above the displays refresh-rate can introduce mouse input problems.
  • Though generally well-received, Akai Katana has issues on its native arcade hardware, often taxing it with more sprites than the hardware can handle. The Xbox 360 port cleans this issue up and introduces Climax mode, which serves as a remastered version of the game with 16:9 aspect ratio and more sprites allowed on-screen, as well as Slash mode, an Arrange Mode that makes fuller use of the game's katana motif. But perhaps the best version of the game is the updated arcade version for the exA-Arcadia platform, which features the 360 version's content, a new Exa Label arrange mode, a harder difficulty for seasoned players, the option to play with an FM synth soundtrack, and while most HD-era games tend to have at least four frames of input lag, the exA-Arcadia version has a mere one frame of lag!

    Simulation Game 
  • The original Nintendo 64 Doubutsu no Mori saw three subsequent re-releases on the Nintendo GameCube, each being an Updated Re-release with additional content to an already-existing formula. The international Animal Crossing in particular, aside from the thorough Cultural Translation, added so many new features that they were backported into the final Japanese version, Doubutsu no Mori e+.
  • The PC port of the Wii game MySims, while there is still Loads and Loads of Loading, in the PC version, this takes anywhere from half to three seconds on a low-end PC at the time.
  • The original Descent was in most respects an excellent game, however, the quality of the MIDI music was heavily dependent on owning a certain kind of soundcard (quite an expensive one at the time). The Apple Macintosh port of the game got a remixed Red Book soundtrack instead. The Mac's higher resolution screen, superior color palette, and generally greater power meant that the game ran at a higher resolution and had much of its interface graphics redrawn to match.
  • When Egosoft rereleased the older titles in the X-Universe series on Steam in the late 2000s, they went back through each and every game with a fine-toothed comb to fix any compatibility issues with current OS's (the first game in the series was originally coded for Windows 95/98). They also added support for widescreen monitors and super high screen resolutions.
  • The January 2013 PC version of Ace Combat: Assault Horizon includes a bonus content pack (including basically all of the DLC from the console versions, missing only a pair of Japan-exclusive skins) and support for screen resolutions of up to 1900x1200.
  • The PlayStation and Sega Saturn version of MechWarrior 2 may have done away with the customization that is generally considered a cornerstone of the series, but in doing so it actually manages to follow the lore of the tabletop game quite a bit more accurately (in that Clan pilots generally just picked what chassis and what variant they wanted rather than custom tooling each 'Mech). It retains a surprising number of functions in spite of a default control setup that lacked dual analog sticks and supported analog controllers for both systems,note  was generally prettier and higher-resolution than the original release of Mechwarrior 2 for PC, and still managed to run smoothly without lag hiccups while reading the disc, as sometimes happened to the PC version. It even managed to keep the music of the original. It would be another year before the Updated Re-release known as the Titanium Trilogy for PC would come by to make things look prettier than the PlayStation version, but that came with a few of its own problems.
  • The Xbox 360 version of the arcade game The Idolmaster features completely redone graphics that take advantage of the Xbox 360's hardware, redone music and choreography, new songs, reworked lessons that accommodate the Xbox 360's controller (the arcade original used touch controls) and if that wasn't all, a completely new idol to produce named Miki Hoshii.

    Stealth Action 
  • Metal Gear games, in general, tend to get fairly solid ports.
    • The PC port of Metal Gear Solid had beautifully upgraded graphics, smoothed textures, the option to pause and save rather than having to call Mei Ling for it, and quite a few other improvements. It unfortunately had compatibility issues with later Windows operating systems and newer hardware, however, the 2020 re-release has remedied virtually all of them and added some extra graphical settings that can improve the visuals even further. Too bad the same justice wasn't done for MGS2's PC port.
    • The Play Station Vita ports of Metal Gear Solid 2 and 3 on the HD collection were both improvements over the originals. They fixed issues with vertical sync during cutscenes that were in the original version due the PlayStation 2's hardware limitations, the touch screen was used for handling items and weapons which made it less akward and much more convenient then the original controls, and the visuals were given a nice upgrade.
    • The port of Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance has been met with positive reception. Though it still has some issues (including a now-fixed bug that would close the game when there was no Internet connection), it is a rather solid port, and people from Platinum and Konami are getting active feedback from PC players, as well. It also includes a "ZANGEKI" option that lets you adjust the amount of cuts you can perform, and you can jump straight into boss battles of previously cleared chapters instead of playing them through to get the boss. It's very well optimized, and the system requirements are quite overblown. On top of that, the port is bundled with all of the game's DLC, and it can be unlocked from the get-go with the Konami Code. Despite all of this, the port still only costs half of what the console versions do.
    • The PC port of Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain allows slightly lower-end PC options to enjoy higher quality graphics than other games of the same time of release.

    Survival Horror 
  • The initial Windows / Xbox 360 version of Alone in the Dark (2008) was rushed out the door in a notoriously buggy and unfinished state. The PlayStation 3 update, subtitled Inferno, fixed glitches from the other releases and even adds a few extra scenes. While not without its flaws, Inferno was vastly improved and closer to what the developers envisioned.
  • The PC version of Alan Wake is considered by many critics to be better than the original Xbox 360 release.
  • The first Clock Tower was re-released for Windows 95 and PlayStation in 1997 with new sounds, scenes, bugfixes, smoother graphics on the PC version, and added new FMV sequences. The PlayStation version also supported its own mouse peripheral.
  • Resident Evil:
    • The Sega Saturn port of the first game wasn't exactly more polished, per se. Its graphical quality takes a slight dip compared to the PlayStation original, but it does include new costumes, a few new enemy reskins, and the first-ever Battle Mode minigame in the series (one of those new enemies, by the way, is a zombie version of Wesker). There was also a Nintendo DS port which added some new puzzle elements, map and status display on the 2nd screen, allowed players to skip the door loading screens, and added some first person combat.
    • Resident Evil was given a remake on the GameCube, which gave it a lot of visual improvements amongst other things. The remastered version for Steam, Playstation 4, and Xbox One brings up the visuals to HD quality, touched up some of the facial animations of the characters, added new costumes, gave an option to play with classic tank controls or modern controls, added widescreen support, included leaderboards, and added achievements. Resident Evil 0 was also given a similar remaster on the same platforms.
    • Resident Evil 2 and 3 got updated PC-DVD re-releases of their PC ports in 2006 by SourceNext which fixed the original Windows 95 versions of these games' compatibility with modern computers and uncompressed video quality for the games' FMVs. Resident Evil 2 in particular also combined Leon's and Claire's scenarios into a single game (similar to the Nintendo 64 port) instead of having their games on separate discs. This version, unfortunately, never was released outside of Japan, and SourceNext handled Resident Evil 4's PC port very poorly.
    • The Wii edition of Resident Evil 4 is what the original PC port should have been. It has the superior visuals of the GameCube version (as well as true widescreen support) with all of the PlayStation 2 version's extra content. It also gives players the option to use the Wii remote to aim at and shoot enemies. The HD Edition on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 presents the game in a higher native resolution, added shadows and colored lighting in many locations. The Ultimate HD Edition of Resident Evil 4 on Steam was handled by QLOC and it rectifies the many of the problems from 2007 PC port by SourceNext. It gives players the option of using a smoother frame-rate, higher resolutions, HD textures, mouse and keyboard support, and better controller support. The Ultimate HD Edition would go onto serving the basis for the HD Remastered versions on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One with a Switch release later down the road, offering similar visual enhancements from the Steam version with some touched up character models on their favorite console or handheld.
    • Resident Evil 6's PC port was handled by the famous QLOC, and it shows, with a highly optimized performance and support for higher resolutions.

    Third-Person Shooter 
  • The PC port of Advent Rising was a marked improvement over the original Xbox version, as its framerate was much smoother and the controls were much less akward. Flick-targeting, one of the things that many people hated about the original version, is much easier to deal with due to the keyboard and mouse control scheme, so you're no longer forced to use it when you don't want to.
  • Bullet Witch was ported to PC in 2018 by XSEED Games, which not only presented the game in higher resolutions and frame-rates over the original Xbox 360 release, it also supports mouse and keyboard controls that work beautifully, rebalances the gameplay around the original Japanese version's difficulty, and includes all of the game's DLCs, even the bonus missions that were locked away as separate purchases in the international version by Atari. The PC version also restores Alicia's dashing ability (which was originally intended for debugging purposes), which can help make playing through the game's large and expansive levels less of a slog to trudge through.
  • The PC port of Gears of War went off without a hitch with some additional graphical options. And not only that, the developers added extra content in the last chapter before the train station, detailing the accounts of Delta Squad escaping the Brumak that tried to cut them off when escaping the Fenix manor. Though unfortunately there were some issues when Microsoft forgot to renew the license for the game, resulting in people being unable to register the product or play it in a certain time frame, also some people reported having issues with installing the game and certain graphics cards being incompatible.
  • Fur Fighters was originally a Dreamcast-exclusive but was ported over to the PlayStation 2 a year after its release. The graphics got a Cel-Shaded makeover, all the character were fully voiced and the boxart was made to look more "mature".
  • Earth Defense Force 2017 Portable for the PlayStation Vita adds the Pale Wings seen from Earth Defense Force 2 and added online multi-player.
    • Earth Defense Force 4.1:The Shadow Of New Despair is a updated re-release of Earth Defense Force 2025 for PlayStation 4 and PC that improves the original version's notoriously low framerate drops and slowdowns that plagued the original version, especially on PC where it's practically nonexistent.

    Turn-Based Strategy 
  • Defender of the Crown: The Amiga version was the first, and sold Cinemaware's vision with detailed still-image graphics, but provided only three tactics during combat and only one catapult ammo type, since it was rushed through production to meet a release date. Later versions for graphically less-powerful systems had more mini-games and strategy after the Amiga buyers complained (looks great, get to do nothing).
  • The GCN version of Gladius is significantly better with the game's main issue, primary due to the Nintendo Optical Disc being optimized for fast load times.
  • Nippon Ichi seems to like this trope quite a bit.
    • Phantom Brave: We Meet Again for the Wii is fundamentally the same game as the PlayStation 2 original, but NIS took the time to remaster every single level and background to take advantage of the Wii's higher graphical capabilities (as well as add another story with some new stuff to collect, but that's par for the course for the company). The result is a much crisper look on the same great game. This version was then re-ported to the PSP as Phantom Brave: Heros of the Hermuda Triangle, which adds Hero Prinny, The Unlosing Ranger, and Asagi to the cast of playable phantoms.
    • Disgaea: Hour of Darkness and Disgaea 2: Cursed Memories both got rereleases on the PSP adding some extra items and cameos, correcting a few bugs, and each add a second mode with an alternate protagonist, more bonus bosses, more playable characters, and Dark Hero Days added DLC and Disgaea 3's Magichanges and passing system. The DS port of the first game added all this plus Prinny Commentary and more hidden characters, but has inferior music and lacks much of the voice acting. Both ports of the first game also replaced Etna's and Thursday's/Vulcanus' voice actors with their new ones. All this is to provide better links to later games in the series and other Nippon Ichi titles.
    • Nippon Ichi is at it again with Disgaea 3: Absence of Detention for the PlayStation Vita. Animated talking sprites, all the DLC already included (Including Beryl mode), two new charcters, more alternate scenarios with different leads, new spells and class specific attacks for the generic humanoids.
    • Disgaea 4's Vita port loses the option to use the Low-Def sprites (other than Asagi), but gains a new story featuring human Atina and Tyrant Valzy, along with new charcter Nagi Clockwork and a Time Traveling Fuka and Desco. Having data for Disgaea 3 on the memory card allows the return of Stella and Rutile from the Vita port of that game.
    • La Pucelle: Tactics also got a PSP port, with extra content, called La Pucelle: Ragnarok. Japan-only.
    • Rhapsody: A Musical Adventure got a rerelease in the Nintendo DS, where it got a battle system overhaul and a few other tweaks (though this version lacked a very lauded element from the PS1 version, which were the English vocals for the songs).
    • Makai Kingdom received a PSP port with a new story mode that deals with Petta, a young girl who claims to be Zetta's daughter.
    • Disgaea 5 Complete has all of the DLC content of D5 available without additional charge, on a system that can beautifully switch between TV and portable modes.
  • The iOS port of Ascendancy received many improvements lacking in the original game (e.g. you can now send ships to distant stars without guiding them every step of the way), with later patches adding even more functionality (such as the ability to use templates when building ships). Sadly the overall balance is still radically skewed.
  • Shining Force CD for the Sega CD, which took the Game Gear Shining Force games and improved the graphics, added CD-quality music, voice-overs, and extra quests. Also of note is the GBA port of the first Shining Force, which eased the difficulty and balanced the gameplay.

    Visual Novels 
  • This is prevalent in visual novel industry, usually when a game gets an anime version. Besides releasing the game to another console, changes can include entirely new stories and characters and, almost always, removal of sex scenes. Some older classics usually get a fully voiced edition, the best kind of premium content people's wish to be found in this genre. Some rare cases, like Little Busters! (Ecstacy) get a reversed-Bleached Underpants rerelease.
  • The Ace Attorney series started off on the Game Boy Advance in Japan only until Capcom decided to bring the series overseas on the Nintendo DS. Sprites were scaled up to accommodate the bigger screen size on the DS without any loss in quality and the sound was significantly improved. The first Ace Attorney game also gained an extra case for players to tackle and it would be referenced in the Apollo Justice chapter of the series years later. And then there are the iOS ports. iOS devices tend to have way higher resolution (current iPads sport 2Knote  displays), better quality sound (especially with headphones), more memory, and more processing power than the original consoles the games were for, something Capcom is clearly aware of (although their initial attempt to port to iOS ended in a Porting Disaster, their subsequent attempts to improve the port by means of updates fixed various bugs and even added new features until it fitted this trope). The interface is also tweaked to work with a single touchscreen that is also the primary display really well. Lastly, this is often used to fix bugs as well.
  • Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc and its sequel got a Compilation Rerelease for the PlayStation Vita called Danganronpa 1x2 RELOAD, featuring better graphics, touch controls, and a "School Mode" for the first game (based on the Island Mode of the second, which was in the original release). The first game's rerelease was brought over to the West in this form.
  • The PS3 port of Soni Comi was fully voiced (in contrast with the PC original, where only Sonico's dialogue was voiced), underwent a massive graphical upgrade, and added more content. When the game was localized into English, the new release was based on this version despite coming out for PC, porting nearly all of the PS3 enhancements over.

    Wide-Open Sandbox 
  • For a good while, the PC ports of the Grand Theft Auto series (the very first game through San Andreas) were considered to be better than the originals, thanks to higher-resolution visuals, faster loading times, more accurate mouse-and-keyboard controls, and modding potential with swappable player character skins, in-game MP3 players, and a plethora of user-created vehicles and mods (including the legendary Multi Theft Auto mod, adding a Wide-Open Sandbox multiplayer mode to GTA years before GTA IV did the same and reintroducing a feature Grand Theft Auto 2 had on the PC to begin with). Unfortunately, the PC port of Grand Theft Auto IV failed to uphold the same reputation and was widely regarded as a Porting Disaster instead, though patches have since remedied this. Luckily, the PC port of Grand Theft Auto V was a major improvement, even compared to the PS4/Xbone versions. Better graphics, a Video Editor, 60 FPS, faster loading times, and runs much better than IV.
    • The Xbox versions of Grand Theft Auto III and Vice City (both released in 2004 as the Grand Theft Auto: Double Pack) were also praised for their number of significant graphical improvements (more so than the PC ports), such as improved character models, textures and lighting, as well as the ability to play custom music from the console's hard drive, which the PlayStation 2 version couldn't do. These visual enhancements were less apparent on the Xbox port of San Andreas, looking identical to the PC port, but the custom soundtrack feature was still intact.
  • Just Cause 2 is the best-optimized multiplatform sandbox game released on the PC in its generation by far, running more smoothly while having even larger environments than most games in the genre. On a Q6600/8800 GT system, it can easily maintain 60 FPS while other ports average closer to 30 FPS. Keyboard-and-mouse controls are also very tight and customizable, while Xbox 360 gamepad support is retained. There's even a small modding community adding features like a full-fledged multiplayer mode, much like what happened to Grand Theft Auto above.
  • The Godfather game, originally for PC, PlayStation 2 and Xbox, was ported for Xbox 360, PS3 and Wii. There are different numbers of Execution Styles, an amount of new content and the latter two make some use of motion-based controls.
  • Sleeping Dogs: Square Enix pushed for a well-optimized and improved PC version.
  • Red Faction Guerrilla Steam Version: while the retail release back when it was new suffered from Porting Disaster, the re-release by Nordic Games did away with all of its problems, first by removal of the defunct Games for Windows Live and changing of server management to Steamworks, engine-level modification that adds DirectX 11 features to a 2009 game, and overall massive optimization to make the game play as intended.
  • While the console and mobile ports of Minecraft suffer from unavoidable hard limits on world size due to the finite storage available, and have long been out of step with the PC version(s) due to being worked on by a different studio—lagging way behind some new features, forging ahead with new features of their own, and just implementing some things differently for no apparent reason—they've always been competent ports considering the limitations they had to work around, and have even inspired the main dev team to incorporate some of their changes back into the Java Edition (the reworked boat behavior, for example, and the built-in book of crafting recipes). And the quality of its optimization became clearer once it was ported to Windows 10, allowing direct performance comparison with the Java-based classic version. But perhaps most notable of all is that the unified, revamped, and rechristened "Bedrock" version features cross-play between every single platform it's available on: Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, iOS, Android, and Windows 10. The PS4 was the sole holdout for about a year before public pressure forced Sony's hand. The idea of cross-platform play between any two competing consoles was unthinkable before this; now it has a decent chance of becoming an industry norm, and you'll have Minecraft to thank for it. On a related note, the aforementioned Java Edition is the killer app for desktop Linux, and has been available for it since the beginning. Many users report that it runs more smoothly on Linux than on Windows, simply due to how well Java (or OpenJDK) and OpenGL perform—and of course it's fully cross-compatible with the Windows and MacOS versions.
  • When the Switch version of No Man's Sky was released in 2022, it had the benefit of already coming with nearly 6 years worth of acclaimed free updates already packed in, meaning not only is it already an almost complete experience from the get-go, but it handles surprisingly well even in handheld mode meaning it's not compromised in terms of quality.

  • Shadowgate was polished in its port from the home computer to the NES. The NES has better dialogue, better graphics, and a haunting soundtrack. Years later, the GBC port Shadowgate Classic (which, itself, was based off of the NES version) polished things even further by including even better graphics, and fixing a couple of annoying glitches.
  • Déjà Vu (1985) got this treatment in Deja Vu I and II for the GBC, with improved graphics based on the Windows version of the game and, as the name would imply, incorporating the game's sequel into the same cartridge (an NES port of II was announced earlier but eventually became Vapor Ware).
  • Action 52 on the Sega Genesis by Far-Sight Studios was still rubbish, but it was indeed superior to the original NES version. Among other things, it is far more stable than its NES counterpart, which is notorious for consisting of more Game Breaking Bugs than there are games. They even got at least one big name to work on the port: the music was programmed by Mark Miller, who also did sound work on Toe Jam And Earl and ported many of Tommy Tallarico's soundtracks to the Genesis. Yet oddly enough, there isn't anything as catchy in the Genesis version as the NES Cheetahmen theme. Just as strangely, most of the games were completely different.
  • The PlayStation port of Superman 64 was never released, but had it been available, it would have fixed several of the game's notorious problems.
  • The DS version of Tony Hawk's Proving Ground was almost unanimously considered by reviewers as superior to the original console versions for sticking to classic gameplay mechanics and having a wide array of online multiplayer features.
  • The Philips CD-i, 3DO and PlayStation ports of Brain Dead 13 have higher video qualities than the MS-DOS, Windows, Atari Jaguar, and Sega Saturn ports, though the former first three each have two CDs instead of one; but only the iOS port, which does not require any CDs, has a higher video resolution that surpasses all of the earlier versions. Also, the 3DO port has two versions of Disc 1: the original one, and "Version 1.1", which fixes a bug that would sometimes cause a crash in Vivi's Salon in the original release. The iOS port did the same in December 2010 by upgrading its version from 1.0 to 1.1, which added support for iOS 3.0 and 4.2 and fixed various bugs.
  • The SNES version of Uncharted Waters: New Horizons takes full advantage of the SNES' SPC700 chipset and uses high quality samples to produce superior music, and combined with the fancy raster effects that is unique to the SNES version due to its advanced graphical capabilities, is widely hailed as the superior port. The other ports of the game were optimized for comparatively inferior OPL2 MIDI chip (although the Sega Genesis version managed to sound slightly better by supplementing the OPL2 MIDI music with PSG-based percussions) and has slightly less sophisticated graphical effects. The PC version technically got the shortest stick, with a crippled MIDI track that's only optimized for the AdLib music card, inability to support Sound Font enabled cards like the Gravis Ultrasound or SoundBlaster AWE32 for instrument samples even though both cards were already released when the game came out, and not only had the least amount of graphical effects of all the ports, it even failed at simple graphical effects like smooth screen scrolling.
  • NiGHTS into Dreams… was re-released for the PlayStation 2 featuring a "Brand New Dreams" mode with a graphical overhaul (higher quality models, higher resolution textures, all sprite-based assets are rendered in polygons, etc.), widescreen support, the original Saturn version in the form of a "Sega Saturn Dreams" mode, and the very rare Christmas NiGHTS expansion as an unlockable bonus. However, the controls were not as smooth and the audio not as pristine as the Sega Saturn version, and a few features such as multiplayer mode, Sonic into Dreams or Link Attack were left out. This version was never released outside of Japan unfortunately, however, the PlayStation 2 version served as the basis for the HD remastered version released worldwide for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and PC via Steam, presenting the game in a higher native resolution and later fixed the control issues with patch.
  • Sonic Dash. The Windows 8.1 port is much more polished than ports of other mobile games, such as Fruit Ninja, which became a huge microtransaction mess. Sonic Dash on Windows 8.1, in particular, can be played on landscape mode, while on, say, an Android phone, the game is played in portrait mode. The game also automatically gives you mouse and keyboard controls if you are not playing the game on a tablet, unlike ports of other mobile games which assume that you are always playing on a tablet.
  • The Windows 8 port of Jetpack Joyride plays exactly like early versions of its mobile counterpart. A few things from it are missing in this port, but a few things that were removed from the mobile version are still present in this port.
  • Gameloft's games on the Windows Store are considered excellent ports of their mobile counterparts (and Microsoft is well aware of this, as there is a whole collection on the Windows Store with Gameloft games). The only exception to this is the Windows 8.1 port of their My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic game: while not a bad port, it is just outdated. Certain areas, such as Sweet Apple Acres and the Everfree Forest are completely missing (and Sweet Apple Acres was already added to the game when this port came out), and accessing the minecart game is made significantly harder in this version: while in the other versions you just need one wheel to access the game, and you can keep going as long as you have wheels, in this port, you need four wheels and can only play once.
  • The Windows 95 port of Ecco the Dolphin. The graphics have been beautifully redrawn, features the higher quality soundtrack from the Sega CD version, new sound effects, more levels, the FMV sequences from Tides of Time, a new difficulty system, tightens up the controls, and includes a save feature.
  • Trauma Center: Second Opinion for the Nintendo Wii was more of remake of Under the Knife for the Nintendo DS, but it introduced a new control scheme that solved the issue of switching tools quickly. The art was redone for both gameplay and characters. While the last chapter of the story was reduced to a cutscene, another chapter was added at the end as well as a parallel running chapter with unique gimmicks, such as taking advantage of the motion controls the Wii Remote offers.
  • The IOS port of King of Dragon Pass fixed outstanding bugs and streamlined some of the more finicky areas of the game. This version also adds a number of new scenes including a recurring character and potential ring member, Theya the Seer. Notably, this version was also ported back to PC and Mac; the version for sale on Steam is a re-port of the IOS game, rather than the original.
  • Cheetahmen 2 was filled with glitches. Greg Pabich released a modified version that was supposed to remove the glitches. However, none of them were actually removed and instead new glitches were inserted into the game, making it even worse than it already was. The only thing that was corrected was that you could now play the final levels of the game.

Alternative Title(s): Porting Distillation