One of the things that changed going from HW1 to HW2 is that combat ranges, when compared to the size of the ships, got a lot longer. To pick out some ranges, after you adjust for the ship scales the HW1 ion cannon frigate has a range of 2.2km and the missile destroyer a range of 2.75 km, with other combat capital ships in a similar range or shorter. The full firepower of a cruiser wasn’t felt outside of 1.7km for instance. In HW2, an ion cannon frigate reaches out to 4km, and BC ions out to 6, with other ships sharing similar ranges.
So what does that mean? I expect it has impact on how the ported maps play, but the factor I’m most concerned with is aesthetics. Shorter ranges and a closer camera zoom cap make more of your view be taken up by ship for the same scale of battle, which is something I like. It makes the ships look bigger, and especially when combined with the short draw distances in HW1, it makes the maps look bigger too. Despite maps being dozens of km across, when I pull my view back to see all of a battle in HW2 I am often struck by how small this little skirmish looks in light of the true vastness of space.
Personally, I’ve been playing a version of HW2 for years that bases it’s ranges on the HW1 example, and I think it looks and feels better. I think HW1R’s campaign would more closely capture the feel of the original if it’s ranges were restored to it.