Posters Name: WaRMaN
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Subject: Vivendi Lineup for E3
Well, the 2004 Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) will be upon us 12-14 May and it's time to hear what we will expect along the lines of great games. Vivendi has released their lineup and its a good one. Some new games some sequels and an old school game hits the console with a new look.
Vivendi will be brining 18 multi-platform releases to the table. World of Warcraft from Blizzard Entertainment, marking VU Games’ entry into the massively multi-player online role-playing games category, StarCraft: Ghost, a tactical-action console game set in Blizzard’s epic StarCraft universe; Half-Life 2, the sequel to the 1998 PC hit that won more than 50 game-of-the-year awards; Crash Twinsanity and Spyro: A Hero’s Tail, the latest installments from two highly successful original character franchises; Van Helsing and The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay, titles based on major theatrical releases from Universal Pictures this spring; and Fight Club, a gritty fighting game based on the feature film from Fox Filmed Entertainment.
Vivendi has not posted their press release yet, so read the full story for a couple more games not mentioned in this post along with all the descriptions. Enjoy!
The titles listed below will be on display at VU Games’ E3 booth (#1200) located in the South Hall of the Los Angeles Convention Center (listed in alphabetical order):
The Chronicles of Riddick™: Escape from Butcher Bay
Experience life behind the eyes of Richard B. Riddick as he sets foot inside Butcher Bay, the toughest prison this side of hell. Set before the events of both Universal Pictures' upcoming summer release The Chronicles of Riddick, starring Vin Diesel, and the 2000 cult classic Pitch Black, the game tells the story of Riddick's dramatic escape from the previously inescapable triple max security slam Butcher Bay, home to the most violent prisoners in the galaxy. Featuring the likeness and voice work of Vin Diesel, the game is played from a primarily first-person perspective (with special third-person actions). Using cutting edge normal mapping technology, the game meticulously recreates the horrors of the prison with vivid realism. To escape, players will have to make maximum use of the game’s stunning environments, including using shadows, subterfuge and distractions to avoid patrols. Moving and attacking in darkness is particularly effective for Riddick as his haunting "eye shine" gives him the ability to see without ambient light. However, stealth won't serve every situation and players will be able to take the action up close and personal. As Riddick, players will be able to sneak up behind enemies and snap necks or fight face to face using fists, elbows and grapples. Additionally, players will be able to capture weapons such as shanks, shotguns, or assault rifles and use these to cut a swath of destruction through anyone who gets in their way. Riddick will be available in June of 2004 for the Xbox® video game system from Microsoft.
Crash™ Twinsanity™ (Titled Crash™Unlimited™ in Europe and Asia Pacific)
A new evil has invaded the island paradise of Crash Bandicoot®, with plans of destruction. In a strange twist, Crash reluctantly pairs with his archenemy, Dr. Neo Cortex, in order to save the world. Through this unorthodox partnership, Cortex is abused as Crash’s favorite weapon when Crash and Cortex are controlled as one in this all-new gameplay mechanic. Gamers will encounter reactive enemies, fully immersive environments and a wacky cast of brand new characters in Crash Bandicoot’s craziest and funniest adventure ever. Crash Twinsanity is scheduled for release third quarter 2004 for the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system and the Xbox® video game system from Microsoft. Outside of North America this game will be titled Crash Unlimited™.
Dark Age of Camelot: Catacombs™
Introducing Dark Age of Camelot: Catacombs™ the 3rd expansion pack to the best-selling, award-winning Dark Age of Camelot® massively multiplayer online role-playing game. You'll discover an underground city in each of Camelot's three realms, replete with hidden dungeons, new mysteries, fearsome enemies and catacombs that can be set up to host private adventures. With new classes and enhancements to character customization as well, Catacombs brings a whole new world of challenges to the Dark Age of Camelot fan. Dark Age of Camelot: Catacombs is scheduled for release in December 2004.
Empire Earth® 2
From the discovery of fire to the technological frontiers of the future, Empire Earth® 2 will serve up worldwide conquest on an epic scale. In the sequel to GameSpy.com’s 2001 “PC Game of the Year,” gamers will take control of a fledgling civilization and strive to forge the greatest of all empires. Empire Earth 2 builds upon the success of its predecessor by adding unique units, powers, leaders, and inherent bonuses to all of the game’s 14 different civilizations. The game’s new Crown System will provide temporary, but potent, rewards for players who demonstrate excellent military, economic, imperialistic, or cultural ability. A war planning screen will help teammates coordinate their efforts by allowing them to use a map of the world to diagram troop movements. Multiplayer competition will feature nine different game types, including new additions to the series such as “Hot Spots,” which force gamers to capture and hold positions of strategic importance. Lastly, Empire Earth 2 will include popular player-requested features like recorded games, improved tournament support, multiplayer co-operative scenarios, and advanced statistics reporting. Empire Earth 2 will be available the first half of 2005, for the PC.
In this clever and entertaining strategy/life simulation game created by Elixir Studios, the player assumes the role of a wicked mastermind bent on achieving global domination through the construction of the ultimate doomsday device. A tongue-in-cheek take on the 60's spy thriller genre, Evil Genius™ offers the player the chance to be the villain and control a secret island fortress complete with powerful (and strangely dressed) henchmen, mindlessly loyal minions and a wide range of hilarious gizmos. All the everyday tasks of the megalomaniac are available to experience as players build a secret base, train minions, gain infamy and notoriety by completing daring missions, toy with the forces of justice by setting clever traps, torture captives with ingenious devices, and develop evil super weapons to complete a nefarious master plan. Evil Genius is scheduled for release in September of 2004, for the PC.
Fahrenheit™ is a spectacular psycho thriller, set in New-York. For no apparent reason, ordinary people are randomly killing total strangers with the same ritual and pattern. Lucas Kane becomes one of these murderers. Finding himself in control of Lucas, the player is haunted by strange visions and the desperate need to find out what is happening to him. At the same time he must keep one step ahead of the police, especially Inspector Carla Valenti and agent Tyler Miles. A constant interaction with the storyline makes the story change as a result of your decisions. Fahrenheit gives gamers the unique chance to play both hunter and hunted, which in turn leads them to speak, explore, interact, fight and confront unknown dark forces. The final countdown has already begun. Fahrenheit is scheduled for release winter 2004, on the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system and PC.
Players will be immersed in this gritty visceral world of fighting by playing as one of the many characters from the Fight Club movie. The extreme realism of the game will have players feel every punch and kick by delivering shocking visuals of broken bones, blood stained ripped clothes and real-time facial deformation in fully interactive environments familiar from the movie scenes. A no-holds-barred realistic fighter, the game will portray the brutality of street fighting while encompassing the artistic style, settings, storyline and characters from the movie with an extremely realistic fighting system and jaw-dropping special effects. With 3 different fighting styles and intuitive controls, ability to create fighters and online gameplay, the game will create a deeply rewarding yet challenging and unique experience for fighting fans of all levels. Fight Club is scheduled for release in fourth quarter 2004, on the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system and Xbox® video game system from Microsoft.
Ground Control® II: Operation Exodus
Ground Control® II is a real-time tactics game set in a gritty science-fiction universe. It delivers explosively fast game play focusing on combat tactics with full use of the 3D battlefield. Weather and other environmental effects also affect the unit’s performance on the battleground. In the war torn year of 2741, Captain Jacob Angelus of the Northern Star Alliance (NSA) becomes the central figure in the fight against the warmongering Terran Empire. In an attempt to crush the NSA permanently, the Terran Empire sends in an alien race of powerful warriors - the Virons. It soon becomes apparent that the situation is bleak for the NSA and that their only hope is to embark on an Exodus to another part of the galaxy. Jacob Angelus must find a way to let his people survive. Ground Control II: Operation Exodus will be available in early July 2004, for the PC.
1998: Half-Life sends a shock through the game industry with its combination of pounding action and continuous, immersive storytelling. Valve’s debut title wins more than 50 game-of-the-year awards on its way to being named “Best PC Game Ever” by PC Gamer and launches a franchise with more than eight million retails units sold worldwide. Now: Half-Life 2. By taking the suspense, challenge and visceral charge of the original, and adding startling new realism and responsiveness, Half-Life 2 opens the door to a world where the player’s presence affects everything around him, from the physical environments to the behaviors – even the emotions – of both friends and enemies. The player again picks up the crowbar of research scientist, Gordon Freeman, who finds himself on an alien-infested Earth being picked to the bone, its resources depleted, its populace dwindling. Freeman is thrust into the unenviable role of rescuing the world from the wrong he unleashed back at Black Mesa. And a lot of people – people he cares about – are counting on him. The intense, real-time gameplay of Half-Life 2 is made possible only by Source, Valve’s new proprietary engine technology. Source provides major enhancements in the advanced facial animation system, physics, graphics and AI. Half-Life 2 will be available for the PC.
Leisure Suit Larry™: Magna Cum Laude
Developed by High Voltage Software, Leisure Suit Larry™: Magna Cum Laude is the coming of age story about Larry Lovage, nephew of Larry Laffer, the series’ original lovable loser. In Magna Cum Laude, Lovage starts as a pathetic loser enrolled at Community College who spends most of his time in his dorm room, or on campus striking out with women. After hearing about a reality TV dating show visiting his college campus, he resolves to revitalize his life and win. Over the course of the game, Larry sets out on an epic search for love (or its equivalent) and finds that things don’t always go as planned. The Leisure Suit Larry videogame franchise began in 1987 with The Land of the Lounge Lizards, the first of seven games in the series. Since then, the Leisure Suit Larry games have sold millions of units worldwide and its games are considered collector items. Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude will be available in October 2004 for the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, the Xbox® video game system from Microsoft, and the PC.
Men of Valor™
Men of Valor™ is an historical action experience that portrays infantry combat during the Vietnam War. Combining the latest Unreal technology with the gameplay expertise of 2015 (developers of the award-winning Medal of Honor: Allied Assault), the game immerses the player in the humid jungles of Southeast Asia in the most controversial conflict of the modern era. Men of Valor follows an American Marine through the early stages of the conflict in Vietnam to the Tet Offensive. Touching on the some of the most familiar scenes of the war as they exist in the popular imagination, the player guides his group of fellow soldiers through the hardship and confusion of the battlefield, bonding with them as they do their duty for their country with the heroism and valor typical of the American soldier, but unsung during the turbulent times. Men of Valor will be available in October 2004 for the Xbox® video game system from Microsoft, and the PC.
Predator™: Concrete Jungle
Gamers will hunt down their prey in an urban killing zone as they take on the legendary role of the lethal Predator within this 3rd person action extravaganza. The intergalactic hunter has its sights set on Earth in this new console game. In Predator™: Concrete Jungle, the gripping tale of the fearsome alien’s history on Earth unfolds between two separate time periods, first the 1930s and then in the 2030s, as the Predator embarks on a mission of revenge upon an organized crime empire and its leader who seek to conquer all Predators. Taking inspiration from the popular film franchise, the game allows players to roam a vast city landscape stalking human prey while armed to the teeth with hunt-adapted vision modes, cloaking technology, and extraterrestrial weapons of annihilation. Predator: Concrete Jungle will be available in the fourth quarter 2004 for the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, and the Xbox® video game system from Microsoft.
Red Ninja: End of Honor™
Red Ninja: End of Honor™ is a third person action game that cohesively blends a variety of game-play features including action, adventure, stealth, and seduction and fighting. All these elements have been placed into Japan in the 1500’s, here the power of the samurai class is fading and the use of the Ninja has become necessary to hold any political power in this chaotic time. Kurenai is a young girl who’s world is destroyed when she and her father are attacked by the deadly Black Lizard Clan, a group that captures her and brutally hangs her by a wire and leaves her to die. Miraculously, she survives and is rescued and adopted into a clan where she obtains complete mastery of her unique weapon, the Tetsugen (steel wire). Kurenai has pledged her undying loyalty to her new family. She now lives to avenge her father’s death and will go to any means necessary to destroy the Black Lizard Clan. Red Ninja: End of Honor is scheduled for release in the Fall of 2004, on the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system and the Xbox® video game system from Microsoft.
Spyro™: A Hero’s Tail
Spyro must save the Dragon Realms from the Evil Red Dragon who has planted light-sapping Dark Gems all over the Dragon Realms in an attempt to capture and control the world. With the help of his allies, Spyro must seek out and destroy all of the Dark Gems to return the lands back to normal and to save the Dragon Realms from the evil dragon’s tyrannical control. Full of brand new dragon powers and abilities, gadgets, real-time morphing environments and five playable characters, A Hero’s Tail is the greatest Spyro adventure yet! Spyro: A Hero's Tail is scheduled for release fourth quarter 2004 for the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, the Xbox® video game system from Microsoft, and Nintendo GameCube™.
StarCraft: Ghost™, Blizzard Entertainment’s upcoming tactical-action console game, refines the epic experience of StarCraft® to the level of the individual soldier. Engage the StarCraft universe face-to-face as Nova, a deadly Ghost operative in the employ of the Dominion. With the help of a determined group of allies, follow story-driven missions that take you from massive planetary battles through dangerous solo operations to an unexpected turn of events that leaves the fate of the universe in your hands. Featuring a revolutionary new style of gameplay that showcases Nova’s physical and psionic abilities, as well as an arsenal of sophisticated weaponry, off-planet call-downs, and vehicles straight out of the StarCraft strategy game, StarCraft: Ghost will be available for the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, the Xbox® video game system from Microsoft, and the Nintendo GameCube™.
In Tribes®: Vengeance, the next installment in the Tribes franchise gamers become immersed in a roiling galactic thriller. Throughout the game, the player catches glimpses of myriad interrelated stories that unfold behind-the-scenes and is given the opportunity to experience the full scope of the single-player story through multiple viewpoints and characters. Utilizing the Vengeance Engine powered by Unreal technology, the world is brought to life with characters that have facial expressions and fully-realized personalities, vehicles that kick up dust as they pass by, and weapons that display spectacular effects. Tribes: Vengeance will also build upon the Tribes series’ legendary online multiplayer action by continuing to focus on team-oriented goals and fluid movement. Developer Irrational Games has hired one of the Tribes community’s leading developers to head up the design and creation of the game’s multiplayer component. Particular focus is being given to making Tribes: Vengeance easily accessible to the video game modification (MOD) community. Irrational Games and VU Games have worked together to ensure that Tribes: Vengeance’s game modification tools are easily accessible and robust. Tribes: Vengeance will be available in the fourth quarter of 2004, for the PC.
Van Helsing, the third-person action game, transports players to a new world of fantastical reality set in 19th century Transylvania – home to the legendary Dracula, Frankenstein’s Monster and the Wolf Man. As the renowned monster hunter Van Helsing, players must hunt down and destroy the evil that inhabits these ancient lands before darkness engulfs the world. As players progress through Transylvania and the strongholds of Castle Frankenstein and Castle Dracula, they’ll encounter untold fiends and evil minions including the legendary dark prince Dracula, Frankenstein’s Monster, the Wolf Man and Igor as well as a host of original creatures created for the game including stone gargoyles, fell spirits and banshees. Van Helsing will be available May 7th for the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, the Xbox® video game system from Microsoft, and Nintendo’s Game Boy® Advance.
World of Warcraft™
In World of Warcraft, Blizzard Entertainment’s upcoming online role-playing experience set in the award-winning Warcraft® universe, three years have passed since the aftermath of Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne™, and a great tension now smolders throughout the ravaged world of Azeroth. As the battle-worn races begin to rebuild their shattered kingdoms, new threats, both ancient and ominous, arise to plague the world once again. Being “massively multiplayer,” World of Warcraft allows players to assume the roles of Warcraft heroes and interact with thousands of other players online as they explore, adventure, and quest across a vast world. Whether adventuring together or fighting against each other in epic battles, players will form friendships, forge alliances, and compete with enemies for power and glory. World of Warcraft is being developed for PC and Mac and is currently in the closed-beta phase of testing.
Behind-Closed-Doors – By Appointment Only:
VU Games and Monolith Productions will provide the media a sneak peek of the latest action-packed project from the developer that created award-winning games like Aliens vs. Predator(tm) 2, the No One Lives Forever(tm) franchise and Tron®2.0. This project might be described as The Matrix meets The Ring, an intense close-quarters combat experience with rich atmosphere and an engaging story presented entirely in first person.