E3 Impressions [5/20/03]

Update [5/28/03]
Rogue Squadron 3 (GC): If you ever wanted to be in the Star Wars movies, then I highly believe this is the closest you could get. This game is absolutely stunning. The core game play of flying in your ships remains, but so much more has been added. Ground combat and on-foot combat have been added into the mix along with footage taken straight out of the movies. One level had you flying on the speeder through the forest and all the videos and pictures you've seen of this just don't do it justice. When seeing it on a television in front of you, then you really see the graphics and framerate for what they are. This game really looks to be the best Star Wars game out there. It played, and looked beautiful.

Metal Gear Solid Twin Snakes (GC): Now a lot of people have played the original but I think everyone will need to play this version. Its graphics have been severely updated to look like the PS2 graphics, but in ways, they look better. The faces are one thing that come to mind they just have a lot of detail. Also the game play features in 2 will be in this one like aiming in first person and hanging from ledges. Good stuff. The only problem I noticed in the demo was the framerate was rather slow at times, but I'm sure that will be fixed before the game is shipped. Plus there are going to be extra scenes added to the game. Some of which they show of the MGS:TS trailer. Overall, they're making a great game even better and I personally cant wait for it.

Resident Evil: Outbreak (PS2): I must have spent the most time with this, so I'm going to be spending the most time talking about this one. This game takes place during the outbreak of the virus in Raccoon City, which is in the time line of RE3 and RE2. Now you're probably thinking "Man another side story!" but this one has multi-player and new features that liven up the series and really take it to a new level. I was blown away by the things I did in the demo. At the show there were four screens set up next to each other and four people would pick their characters. Now every character has special abilities. My character had the ability to make healing items.

So, the four people start off in a bar when a mysterious person walks into the bar and the bartender then gets bit and he throws the man out of the bar and slams the door shut, locking it. Now here is when the game begins and at the moment the Capcom rep was telling one of us to move the barrels in front of the door to block it to keep the zombies from coming inside. Well it didn't stop them long and after that they broke through and attacked the bartender and began eating him. He then dropped a key so I ran over and quickly grabbed it while one of my fellow players shot the zombies to keep them off of me. The key was for unlocking a door and if you didn't get that key, you were stuck in the bar and you would all die (or so the Capcom rep told me). Very cool stuff. After going through that door, we all went our own ways. The zombies will keep coming and it seems like they won't stop. You would get a break after leaving them but before long they would be back. Now I ran around and found a metal pipe and a piece of wood to use as weapons. I bashed the wood into the attacking zombies until it broke and then my character shoved the remaining wood into a zombies head. Gruesome indeed. Then all I had was my trusty pipe. I proceeded into another room, what looked like a storage room and as I went into the room, zombies were trying to bust down a door to the right of me which I assume because one of my fellow players had just entered the room. Well I saw some huge shelves with a ladder at the end of them so I made a run for it. I managed to get up and then crawl on top of the shelves to a vent shaft to the upper floor.

Well, from there I made it to the roof and another player had just followed me. We began looking around frantically because at any second the zombie could show up. The Capcom rep then came over and said "See that piece of fence over there - you can destroy it". So the one character began ramming it while I used my pipe to hit it and we went back and forth till finally it broke. Did I mention that while were doing this there are crows pecking at us? Yeah. Hectic is one word to sum it up. So we quickly busted the fence down and ran behind it to the end of the building. There was another building right next to it so we had to jump across. Now you can't jump at any time but they have made it so you can jump across gaps if need be. So we jumped across and made it into the building and down the stairs to the street floor.

There it cut to a cinematic of a police officer needing help. He instructed us to go help finish a barricade to keep the zombies from coming in. So down the street you could see a cop car blocking half the street but the zombies were coming in from the other side so as a team you had to push the other cop car down the street to finish the blockade. As you can tell this game is very involving and really taking the genre in a good new direction. After that I died and then the other two remaining players were kicked off. From what the rep told me he had never seen any group of people get that far, so good for us I guess. I came away from that demo blown away and only wanting more. The melee weapons and the teamwork and the interactivity of the environments were impressive. Zombie movies are always about people struggling together to get out alive, using anything they can get there hands on as a weapon and using there environment to survive. This is what Capcom is doing for RE:Outbreak and considering the demo I played its going to be just like the movies. One quick note, the game had a lot of clipping where characters would go right through other characters and the zombies would sometimes stutter around kind of vanishing and appearing right next to you but I'm sure all these bugs will be worked out as well. Look forward to this one. Also RE: outbreak is no longer online only, you can now play with your friends simultaneously.

ILS did manage to get our own Slasher_Thrasher into E3 this year. Check out his post-E3 comments on the games that were shown at E3.

-- Kinderfeld, Editor

Castlevania (PS2): Well, Castlevania is once again back in 3d and this time it looks like they got it just right. Fluid control, crisp graphics, fast gameplay - everything that you would expect from a Castlevania game, including the menacing boss battles. What was shown at the show was only one playable level by the looks of it and ending with a huge rock boss. Very nice and very impressive. If the rest of the game lives up to the demo then have no fears - Castlevania is back and in a big way.

Mario Kart Double Dash (Gamecube): This title looks great in motion and plays like butter. If you enjoyed the last two Mario Karts, then have no fears as this one looks to be the best one out there. There were only a few levels playable but one in particular had you traversing a huge mountain course and eventually you were blasted out of a cannon to the top of a volcano where you then race back down to the bottom. Very cool stuff. Nintendo also had eight players going at once, so it was quite a amazing sight. Everyone who participated was privy to a Mario Kart Double Dash T-shirt and the first four to finish the race won a Gameboy Advance SP holder case (which I won I might add).

Halo 2 (Xbox): Halo 2 was there, but not in playable form to the public per say, but was being played by a Bungie representative. From what I saw, Halo 2 is going to be everything that everybody had hoped for. The sprawling city was huge and filled with detail and Master Chief actually sported double guns in his hands. Also he jumped right onto a moving ghost ship, very impressive. At the end everyone in the room was blown away and believe me, if Halo 2 is anything like the demo shown it will be one of the best games ever made.

- - Slasher_Thrasher

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