Digital Eclipse have announced their first release in a new product line called the Gold Master Series.
The Gold Master Series seems to be quite the high concept, but Digital Eclipse is working off of the success of Atari 50: The Anniversary Celebration. Digital Eclipse editorial director Chris Kohler refers to them as ‘interactive documentaries’, which imply some sort of integration of gameplay and commentary, or other special feature.
So, for those who haven’t had the pleasure, Atari 50: The Anniversary Celebration designed their extras and bonus features section to be like a game in itself. These sections have their own chapters that you can access in game like UIs, and can provide their own form of play pattern. Digital Eclipse seems to want to do that to individual games in this new Gold Master Series.
The first title in this series is The Making of Karateka, which is all about the 1984 Apple ][ title Karateka. The game also happens to share its title with a book by franchise creator Jordan Mechner, The Making of Karateka : Journals 1982-1985.
Jordan is visibly a part of this interactive documentary himself, as well as someone who is now seen as an unseen hero in Karateka’s story; Jordan’s father Francis Mechner.
Intriguingly, The Making of Karateka will come with four versions of Karateka, one of which will be a full remaster of the original game.
Not included, however, are the DOS and NES versions of the game, two of the most prominent platforms where players could have experienced the franchise. Retro gaming personality Anatoly Shankin received a response from Digital Eclipse’s Mike J. Mika about this on Twitter.
Mika explained that licensing issues did not allow them to add all versions of Karateka to this Gold Series release, but they are also discussed in the documentary.
Also not included in this special release is Mechner’s 2012 remake of Karateka, updating it to a 2.5D brawler, and featuring art by comics artist Jeff Matsuda. What will be included, however, is Deathbounce: Rebounded, and all new completed release of Deathbounce, the prototype that Mechner was working on before he came up with the idea for Karateka.
Even if you aren’t particularly a fan of Karateka, Digital Eclipse’s name and prior work on their peerless remasters should be more than enough to pique your interest on this and future Gold Master Series releases.
As reported by Gematsu, The Making of Karateka will be released on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC via Steam and Good Old Games. You can watch the announcement trailer below.