Scarface: The World is Yours E3 Preview
By: Giovanni Acosta
The movie Scarface in the 1980s was like the movie Blow in the new millennium, but instead of a coked out, wimpy Johnny Depp, our parents had the likes of a coked out, kick ass Cuban named Tony Montana. For those of you who havent seen the legendary flick, it is about a Cuban refugee who comes to the shores of Miami Beach and makes millions through violence, drugs and organized crime. The characters bloody downfall on the stairs of his multimillion dollar home is one of the greatest death scenes of all time.
Many wondered why the director of that flick had to end our beloved Tony in such a one sided battle when he took on the South American drug cartels assassins all alone with his little friend, the M16 with grenade launcher attachment. And to think that he might have made it out of the house if only the assassin, the Skull, hadnt come up behind him and shot him in the back with a double-pump shotgun.
Well, developers at Radical Entertainment have turned on their imaginations and creativity, plugged in the technical time machine, and reverted back to that night when Hollywoods greatest anti-villain perished, and places him under your control seconds before the bullets fly out of the Skulls shotgun and into Montanas spine. With your assistance and control, Radical Entertainment allows you to turn around and take care of that would be killer, the Skull, and then continue onwards with the blood bath of them stinking South American cocker-roaches (dont forget to roll your Rs).
As you maneuver through the opening sequence of the game, your gunshot accuracies determine whether the infiltrating scum stand, squat, or kneel for the remaining seconds of their little, digital lives. You can make Tony Montana work his lyrical arsenal as well, creating his signature taunts to be shouted out and causing the game AI to come out from their dark little corners. Even gory headshots create carnal catastrophe as skulls explode and blood spills across floors of Montanas mansion. Escape alive, and Radical Entertainment and VU Games have much to leave you for rewards, the remaining drug empire one of the worlds most dangerous Cubans, and many adventures to follow.
The game was displayed to me by developers at E3 and what a gem it seemed to be. Not only was the AI responsive to the tactical and psychological damage caused by our character to their forces, but they also knew how to appropriately use cover and encircle our anti-hero. Eventually, the developers made Montana take to the streets and promised many familiar locations from the movie would be digitally recreated for this game as well as many Miami landmarks such as South Beach and little Havana.
Driving around the cars with likeliness of the vehicles from the 1980s and listening to the tracks from back when our parents and even some of us jammed to the house and disco beats will definitely be a throwback to a classic age, a la Rockstars Vice City game. But this time, there is a definite connection with the character from the beginning since many, if not most, have seen this cult hit way before they even touched a controller pad. One thing I did notice as the developers drove around Miami was that the graphics were on par with todays latest. The colors were excellent, the city textures un-jagged, and the draw distances were decent, yet some things seemed less than they should be.
After much inquiry, I was told that initially the game was meant to be designed for Sonys Playstation 2. Then, developers beefed up the engine and created its other console counterparts, and finally finished off with the PC port. This had me thinking that it may be likely that we wont be able to see the best of our friend Tony and his new struggles in the city of Miami, the waters of the Atlantic, or the jungles of South America. But I was eventually assured that even Scarface: The World is Yours will boast brilliant visuals with new technology as it even going to be released for the upcoming Xbox: 360 (one of the reasons for the initial delay).
As far as the game goes, developers showed me that your respect is earned by your tenacity in killing. The more damage you cause in your battles, the more you will be feared on the street. Driving free form around the city will pit you up in drug battles to control street corners and the price of your goods, as will captaining your watercraft on the high seas as you deliver and receive your stash from off shore islands. And it doesnt seem like you will be at it alone. Many of the game AI were rebel drug lords trying to finish what Sosa started with the now failed assassination attempt at the beginning of the game.
One of the coolest features to hear about was that there was a possibility of actual micromanagement of the drug game as far as controlling supply and demand, and how speedy your product comes into the States. Of course, no free form game is any fun without driving like a maniac through the streets and shooting things, but I was surprised to see that Montana doesnt roll down his window to shoot out of the side of the car, but instead he just shoots ahead through the front windshield as he drives. I wasnt too pleased to see this small attention to detail be failed upon my demonstration, but developers ensured me that the game still has much development left.
One of the things they discussed is how the voices of some of the movies actors will be returning along with their likeliness. Voices such as Robert Loggias and Steven Bauers will be on hand to make the game follow closely to the likeliness of the movie. Although Al Pacinos likeliness will also be used as the main character, his voice will not be in the game, unfortunately. Yet, we should be expected to hear some classic tunes from the movie on the background music list that will keep our feet taping as we kill the competition.
Overall, I am looking forward to see what comes out of Scarface: The World is Yours. I know that with the right guiding hand and quick reflexes, someone can make right what Tony Montana wanted after his paranoia and downfall led him to his original death. Only if Radical Entertainment can keep continued production and efficient use of technical capabilities, will this work to its potential on all other systems beyond todays PS2. Look for it 2006. I know I will because even when I lie, I tell the truth. Thats the bad guy.