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Old 07-17-2008, 07:58 PM
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Default Wanted Impressions

We get our first look at this impressive-looking movie-licensed game at E3 2008.

E3 2008 is still going on in Los Angeles, California, and we're still on hand at the event to cover games like the recently announced Wanted from developer GRIN The game will apparently try to continue the events of the Wanted motion picture seamlessly, making its start just as the events of the movie draw to a close. If you haven't seen the movie, please be advised that this preview may contain minor spoilers.

In the game, you'll play as actor James McAvoy's Wesley Gibson character, a young fellow who has recently been inducted into a secret society of professional assassins who are so skilled at their job that they're able to actually fire their guns around corners by curving the arc of their bullets with an expert flick of the wrist. Like in the movie, the game will have plenty of dramatic, over-the-top scenarios, such as the level we watched today--a deadly game of cat-and-also-cat (with guns) in which Gibson must hunt and kill a group of mysterious gunmen who have apparently slaughtered all the passengers aboard a commercial airplane while the vessel is still airborne.

In the demonstration we watched, Gibson started his mission crouched in the aisle of the economy seating section, knelt down behind a rolling snack cart which he was able to push forward (while remaining crouched beneath it) with a push of a button. In fact, from what we could tell, Gibson immediately and automatically takes shelter behind any cover he comes across. Cover will be a key mechanic in the game, but unlike in other games that require you to actively hunch down, then stand back up, and trudge to the next piece of cover in the environment, in Wanted, you'll be able to transition freely from cover to cover by rolling along the ground to automatically attach yourself to the next available object, or quickly mantle over cover--from cover--to the next cover point. In fact, if you can skillfully transition from cover to cover to cover, you'll be rewarded with "assassin points" that let you go into "assassin mode"--which apparently lets a professional killer such as yourself completely supress all stress and anxiety in your system, effectively slowing time and allowing you to get the drop on your enemies.

In today's demonstration, we watched Gibson sneak through the aisle behind the cart until he was spotted by a gunman who immediately opened fire. We watched Gibson spring into action by diving behind the nearest seat and returning fire, eventually blasting the wall-mounted fire extinguisher near his assailant, which not only instantly killed his attacker, but also blasted out the nearest passenger window, causing the pressurized air in the cabin to be rapidly and violently be sucked out of the plane as papers and debris began flying all over the place, the entire plane began to rock back and forth, and, of course, the oxygen masks dropped from the ceiling. which unfortunately didn't really help anybody. Gibson continued to make his way along the aisle and encountered two more assassins around a corner. He skillfully hopped from cover to cover, he was able to build up enough assassin points to go into assassin mode, sneaking around the other side of the central barrier of the plane (which contains the restrooms, for those who have never flown coach) while his assailants continued to fire forwards. This gave us a chance to see bullet curving in action--you fire a curved bullet by pressing and holding a button to establish a ghostly firing arc hovering in midair. When the arc is red, it means you don't have a clear shot; when it turns white, your shot is locked in and is guaranteed to hit. We watched as Gibson used bullet curving to dispatch one of his attackers, then blew out another fire extinguisher near the emergency exit with a second shot--this blew open the door and sucked the other gunman right off of the plane.

As we continued our demo, we watched demonstrations of more of Gibson's assassin skills in action, such as his ability to use lethal melee attacks up close. Gibson carries a concealed knife for this purpose. We watched him sneak up on an enemy crouching on the other side of an airplane seat and, in one quick motion, slither over the seat and viciously plunge his knife into the man's throat, spilling gouts of blood everywhere. Gibson can also seize hold of enemies and use them as a human shield to soak up incoming bullets before eventually slashing the throat of his captive and tossing him away, as well as blind-firing at enemies from behind cover and firing (or slashing with his knife) while dodging, a la Max Payne.

Wanted won't feature any multiplayer modes, and because it's based on a motion picture license, the developer is trying to avoid making the game too complicated to pick up and play. However, from what we saw, there will be enough fast-paced violence for any action-movie junkie, and possibly enough interesting gameplay for serious game players. Wanted looks very impressive from what we've seen--it has unique gameplay, great-looking graphics, and shockingly violent battles. The game is scheduled for release later this year on the PC, the Xbox 360, and the PS3.
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Old 07-30-2008, 02:20 PM
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This is a movie game that should kick ass.
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Old 12-04-2008, 09:53 PM
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Old 12-04-2008, 10:39 PM
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Nice to see they took some time with it and not rush it for the movie release.
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