E3 2008: Project Origin Impressions

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E3 2008: Project Origin Impressions

Post by Vassa on Mon Jul 21, 2008 12:28 am

- The first-person shooter genre got a treat when F.E.A.R. was released by Vivendi in 2005. Since then, developers Monolith and Sierra have parted ways. The divorce was a little messy and left VU with the rights to use the F.E.A.R. name exclusively and Monolith with the rights to creepy little Alma and the universe she's happy to terrorize. With all of this legal mumbo jumbo as background noise, Monolith continued on developing the sequel to F.E.A.R., now known as Project Origin, a title chosen from contest submissions because of its plot point reference that most fans will recognize.

The story of Project Origin happily dances along as psychically psycho Alma continues to throw her vengeful tantrum against the world that allowed her torture. Players will step into the shoes of a different protagonist than the F.E.A.R. titles. This time it's Michael Becket of the Delta Force and his story begins 30 minutes before Alma's final meltdown as he and his Delta team rush in to arrest Genevieve Aristide for her role in the Project Origin facilities debacle.
Fans will be pleased to hear that Monolith has adopted a new philosophy of variety in this sequel. That includes everything from level design and gameplay mechanics to color this time around! It seems they are keenly aware that one of their greatest failings in the original was that lack of variety.

While the entirety of the experience will take place in the ruined city, players will visit several different locations to fight through rather than a long string of warehouses and office buildings. You'll see an elementary school, posh hotel, and hospital just to name a few. While we'll have to wait to see how far that new philosophy takes the art, in the demo level at the show, the warm colors of the city were certainly welcome and frankly, it enhanced the mood. In fact, they're hoping to use color and sound to "map the emotional journey players experience in Project Origin." Even slo-mo, a feature that will be added to Becket somewhere in the game's story, will intensify color rather than mute it as in the original.
The level we were shown today takes place later in the game and shows off the wreckage of the city-leveling explosion that came at the end of F.E.A.R.. It's clear that Alma is a cranky little miss bloodsocks. Poor Mr. Becket is caught in her mind-twisting plan to alter reality as he surfaces onto street level in the demolished city. He immediately finds himself under attack by soldiers, which rocks because as we all know, the fighting is what makes these games from Monolith rad. That's right... RAD. I said it.

It's pretty clear that the infantry combat is going to work much like it did in the original. Enemy AI will take advantage of the environment, use it to advantage, and try their best to kill your face. As before, they'll create their own cover, move to flank, and generally act to preserve their own lives while attacking. Becket has the advantage of being able to hold up to four weapons in Project Origin versus Point Man's three in F.E.A.R.. Sure, it doesn't seem like much, but how often did you wish you could hold just one more heavy weapon in your arsenal? This is especially true when you run across something new. While they're not talking about all of the new weapons, a laser rifle used to slice enemy limbs off was mentioned but not actually shown. For the bloodthirsty that remember the squelchingly violent bloodletting of the first game, this will undoubtedly come as a pleasant surprise.


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Last edited by Aleksandar on Tue Sep 23, 2008 2:51 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : SPOILER)
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