E3 2011: Dust 514 Sony Press Conference Impressions Preview

CCP Games takes to the Sony stage at E3 to show off its first-person shooter that will connect to the PC MMO game EVE Online.

Earlier this evening, during Sony Computer Entertainment's E3 2011 press conference, CCP Games showed off a demo of its upcoming first-person shooter, Dust 514. Originally announced simply as a console-based sci-fi shooter set in the EVE Online universe, Dust 514 is now a PlayStation 3 exclusive that will actually connect to CCP's massive sci-fi online game. Exactly how the two games will interact with one another isn't immediately apparent, but where EVE Online focuses on space battles, it's clear that Dust 514 will be all about ground combat and planetary conquests.

During the demo, one of the EVE Online universe's countless planets was displayed with a hex-based map superimposed on it, suggesting that maybe rival factions will be fighting for control of even a single planet across multiple battlefields. One such battlefield was shown, as the player assumed the role of a mercenary arriving via a dropship just in time to see one of his squadmates getting killed before taking cover himself. Nothing about the environment or the battle being fought stood out as being unique among sci-fi first-person shooters, but at one point the action did pause to display the prices of everything from a soldier's armor to a huge spaceship in ISK, EVE Online's in-game currency. If nothing else, perhaps credits earned in one of the two connected games will be available to spend on weapons and the like in the other.

Besides the never-before-seen compatibility with a PC massively multiplayer online game, announcements concerning Dust 514 included support for PlayStation Move, some kind of PlayStation Vita portable functionality, and for those who care, a dedicated Home space. We look forward to bringing you more information on this ambitious PS3 exclusive as soon as it becomes available, hopefully while we're at E3 this week.

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This is a very interesting concept. Given the respective track histories of Sony and MS with regards to connecting their networks to other people's, it's not that much of a shock that this has gone Ps3, though I'm slightly suprised there's apparently no PC version. What I really like, though, is the way those oh-so-serious high-falutin' EVE corps will be able to hire some short-attention-spanned twitch-happy console FPS gamers to do their dirty work groundside for them. (Stereotypes included for general purposes only)