Donīt know if anyone seen this (sorry if this is old news)..Every E3, there is at least one game that takes you by surprise when you see it for the first time. For me, that game at this year’s expo is Advent Rising, the upcoming Unreal engine based third person sci-fi action game from developer GlyphX and publisher Majesco. While I first read about this title in Game Informer magazine, I was totally unprepared for the game’s behind closed doors demo at Majesco’s E3 booth last week.
The game takes place in the far future where one the last humans in the universe faces off against an alien race while discovering his own powers. The first part of the E3 demo showed the game’s combat as our hero goes up against a horde of aliens as well as trying to avoid an alien bombardment. The combat used a lot of fancy Matrix-like acrobatics from the hero as he jumped and fired his weapons at the alien enemies. He also took control of a four wheel drive jeep, one of the many drivable vehicles that will be found in the game (more on that later). The level in the first part of the demo and indeed in all of the E3 demo environments are vast, making them look and feel like real places rather than a level in a game.
The demo also took place on top of an alien skyscraper that must have been thousands of feet in the air. It was here that the GlyphX developers showed one of the powers our hero will learn: telekinetics. We saw him lift that same jeep up in the air just by waving his hand. We also saw what has to be called the ultimate monster truck: a futuristic vehicle that must be one hundred feet high that was completely drivable. Indeed, we were told that the vehicle itself will actually hold the smaller jeeps inside itself.
Advent Rising’s physics engine is still being worked on but we saw examples of it in the game as our hero drove one of the smaller jeeps from the top of one skyscraper and jumped over hundred of feet to land on one of the floors of another alien skyscraper, making similar jumps in Bungie’s Halo seem puny in comparison. We also saw that the game’s ragdoll physics is not limited to vehicles; we saw other items like furniture being manipulated, picked up and destroyed by our hero.
One of the more interesting aspects of Advent Rising is that it’s being developed as a trilogy of games from the very start. As the GlyphX developers told me, most of the time when a video or PC game is a hit developers now have to go, “Now what?” when work begins on a sequel. In Advent Rising, however, clues are already being left that will be used and finally revealed in the other two games in the trilogy. The game will also benefit from the presence of Orson Scott Card on the team as the famed sci-fi writer will expand upon the storyline already developed by the GlyphX team for the game.
It’s hard to truly describe the epic look and feel of Advent Rising in a brief amount of words. The best way to describe what we saw and what GlyphX plans to do is “Halo times 10”. Everything we saw in our brief E3 demo blows away what we saw of Halo 2 in terms of scale and promise and if GlyphX can deliver on that promise it will surprise a lot of gamers. At the moment, the game is scheduled for release in March 2004 for PC and Xbox and we will follow the development of the game in the coming months.
From what I'm reading, it looks to be everything that Halo promised but didn't deliver. PC release, decent multiplayer, engrossing scifi story (how could it not be, given the writer?), and hopefully something more than room-coridor-room-canyon-room level design.
Halo was going to be amazing, then Microsoft got in there with lots of money and altered what was going to be an amazing game and turned it into a merely mediocre one.
Posts: 903 | Registered: May 2003
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Yeah, I heard about that. Game Informer. Issue or two ago. By the way, anyone remember me? On a long time ago, said some stupid stuff... Oh well, start from scratch...
Posts: 197 | Registered: Mar 2002
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I read that article in Game Informer, as well. I thought I remembered it saying that OSC was writing a book that either ties in or adapts each game in the series, if it lasts that long. I just think that's a cool idea. I'm all for more stuff to read.
Posts: 4 | Registered: Jun 2003
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Hey! Don't put words in my mouth! I liked Halo, but I didn't think it stands up to the other FPS games in the field.
Unreal Tournament 2003 had better graphics. Half Life had a better storyline. A monkey on crack could produce more varied level designs (one would hope anyway... being a monkey on crack). If you are a horrible fanboy like I am (and how ) and saw the 100 meg video that PC Gamer released back when Halo was going to simultaneously release for PC and Mac, you'd feel my dissapointment.
It's saving grace was multiplayer, both cooperative and big games of team slayer with full vehicles.
To prove how much I like it, I'm forking the fifty for the PC version. Mainly so I can mod the living heck out of it... but I could fill a whole thread with the mods I want to make for Halo (*strangles grunt* Shadow Jeep! Shadow Jeep! Give me the Shadow Jeep!).