Cel Damage HD is a HD remastering of Cel Damage which was originally released on the Xbox in 2001. Dubbed a "revitalisation" by HD developer Finish Line Games (the original games developer being Pseudo Interactive) the game builds upon the later release of the original game (Cel Damage: Overdrive) which was exclusively release on the PlayStation 2 in Europe in 2003.
The HD remastering is available on the Sony PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita platforms under the Cross Buy program on April 22nd, 2014 in America and May 14th, 2014 in Europe, Australia / New Zealand and Middle Eastern territories.
Although the game differs in a few areas from the original release, the core game remains the same cel shaded vehicle combat game.
Cel Damage HD retains the 3 game modes of the original as well as the 10 playable characters (6 unlocked initially), 13 levels of the original game and weapons of the original game. The core concept of the game is that the 10 characters enter as contestants on the worlds most popular cartoon demolition derby TV show in order to achieve fame and become the worlds best demolition derby driver.
The key changes made from the original game were mostly either based on or built upon the European version of the original game Cel Damage: Overdrive.
The most significant change made to the gameplay was the overhaul of the weapon damage and health system of the game. Whereas in the original release where every weapon would deal an instant one-hit kill, Cel Damage HD introduces the traditional health bar and damage system found only in Cel Damage: Overdrive (the European PS2 release) although slight tweaks were made to the damage dealt by some of the games weapons.
The game also retains the stunting system (detailed below) and ability to perform a turbo boost (earned via performing stunts) also found in Cel Damage: Overdrive as well as making alterations to the AI in the form of dynamic difficulty adjustment to the AI in order to make the AI opponents more reactive and challenging from the original release.
Other additions include a reworked menu screen and trophy support for the game.
The stunting system not seen in the original release of the game features 4 components players can perform in order to either earn turbo boost tokens, double points in the Smack Attack game mode (as all points earned while stunting are doubled) as well as giving players complete control of their vehicle. The 4 components of the system are as follows:
- Flips - Players may perform a 360 degree leap forward. Not only do forward flips give players a slight speed boost but they also earn players a turbo boost token for their boost meter.
- Dodges - A dodge is similar to a forward flip but is either the left or right direction in a barrel-roll like motion. Performing dodges makes players less susceptible to attacks and damage temporarily and should players dodge onto an opponent, it will flatten the opponent and slow them down for a short period of time.
- Hop - Players may also perform a hop which will cause their vehicle to do a small vertical hop.
- Air Control - Any time players are remain the air for an extended period of time they can reorient their vehicle in order to land on their wheels and reduced the amount and speed of any rolls which may occur when they land.
The game features local multiplayer for 2-4 players but does not feature any additional online multiplayer modes. The response when asked about the possible inclusion of online multiplayer modes, developer Finish Line Games gave the following response:
Unfortunately, the original was never designed for it and the changes required were way too extensive for our small team to complete in a reasonable time. It is still on our minds though, and if all goes well, we’d really like to revisit this in the future.