Sega's Altered Beast unfortunately isn't playable at its E3 2004 display, but we got to speak with the game's developer to uncover a few more details about the upcoming revival of the old arcade and Genesis classic. All four of the old beast forms--wolf, dragon, tiger, and bear--will return in the game, and five more will be added, including the merman, the yeti, and a flying creature called a garuda. The original game's beast transformation cinematics are well remembered by anyone who played the game, and the new Altered Beast will be using fully rendered CG sequences to illustrate your grisly metamorphoses.
The game will be set up in such a way that you gain more beast forms as you progress. Unlike the first game, which limited you to one preset form per level, the new Altered Beast will give you some options as to which beast you use at a given time depending on the circumstances in the level. The genome system will allow you to enhance your beast forms--when you find a genome chip, you'll be able to apply it to any form you wish to increase one of its attributes, such as strength.
Work continues on Altered Beast, and we were told that the game's graphics engine is currently supporting up to 70 enemies onscreen at once. We imagine that huge number will translate into some pretty intense combat once we finally get to try the game. Altered Beast is tentatively slated for a late 2004 or early 2005 release, and we'll bring you more on the game in the future.