ECTS 2002: 3DO's PC and console lineup, future plans

We visit with 3DO and take a look at the company's upcoming console and PC games.

3DO was in attendance at this year's ECTS and showed off a total of six upcoming games for various platforms for release this year and next:

Jacked (Xbox / PS2 / GC )
Cubix Robots for Everyone: Showdown (GC / GBA )
Army Men: Turf Wars (GBA )
Army Men: Sarge's War (GC )
Street Racing Syndicate (Xbox / PS2 / GC )
Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (PC / Xbox / PS2 / GC )

Jacked will be a motorcycle combat racing game, in which players will choose to play as one of a group of colorful, over-the-top motorcycle riders that race against each other on various tracks and can impede each other's progress by attacking each other. As we saw, players will be able to punch and kick other riders, as well as beat them with golf clubs or shoot them with weapons like a rocket launcher. Jacked is scheduled for release on the Xbox, PS2, and GameCube next summer.

Cubix Robots for Everyone: Showdown will be a turn-based strategy game based on the children's cartoon show. The game, which is intended for younger audiences, will include trading and collecting features that resemble Pokémon, except that instead of trying to capture a stable of monsters, players will attempt to collect various robots and robot parts to build, and in the single-player game, players will also be able to do some exploring and speak with other characters, much like in a traditional adventure game. Cubix is scheduled for release on the GameCube and PS2 this fall.

Army Men: Turf Wars for the GBA will be the next GBA Army Men game, and like in several of the previous games in the series, players will play as Sarge, the tough green plastic soldier, in a third-person isometric shooter. Sarge will spend much of his time shooting at his enemies, the tan soldiers, though he'll also be able to swing across ledges and occasionally team up with the Blue Spy. Army Men: Turf Wars will hit the GBA this fall.

Army Men: Sarge's War will be a third-person shooter that will star the hero of the series, Sarge. However, 3DO is attempting to make Sarge's War a much grittier game than most of the other typically lighthearted Army Men games. Sarge's War takes place after every single one of Sarge's soldiers has been melted, and with his entire squad dead, Sarge charges recklessly into battle, and both he and his enemies will actually be physically deformed by incoming fire. In Sarge's War, Sarge and his enemies can have their limbs, legs, parts of their torsos, and even their heads blown clean off by enemy fire. If Sarge is wounded and picks up a health pack, his damaged body parts will melt back together again, much like the T2000 robot from Terminator 2. Army Men: Sarge's War is scheduled for release at the beginning of next year.

Street Racing Syndicate (or SRS) is a racing game that's being developed by Test Drive Le Mans creator Euthechnyx. The game will focus on illegal street racing in souped-up cars on a variety of tracks that will be modeled after real-world locations, like Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles, California. The final game will feature reflective surfaces on its cars that will quickly turn into torn fenders, sputtering tailpipes, and smashed windows if players aren't careful. 3DO has stated that the game will have elements from both arcade-style racers and realistic racing simulations. Taking damage on your car will affect its performance slightly but won't completely cripple it. SRS is scheduled for release on the Xbox, PS2, and GameCube next summer.

3DO's final new title at the show was Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, an unusual game that's notable for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that it will be the company's very first M-rated game. Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse will be a violent, Gothic-themed third-person action game that will feature art and characters created by French comic artist Simon Bisley. Players will play as Abbadon, a fallen angel sent to a postapocalyptic Earth to defend it against the coming of the titular four horsemen, as well as Satan himself. Over the course of the game, Abbadon will be joined by three companions: a prostitute with the power to heal his wounds, a serial killer with the power to detect demons, and a corrupt politician with the ability to take control of his enemies and force them to do his bidding. Judging from the brief demonstrations and the various concept art sketches available, Four Horsemen will be an extremely bloody and violent game. It's scheduled for release on the PC, Xbox, PS2, and GameCube next year.

Finally, the company reaffirmed its commitment to keeping around the High Heat Baseball series and the Heroes of Might and Magic turn-based strategy series. 3DO mentioned that the upcoming expansion pack for Heroes IV is still on track for later this year, and even provided some new screenshots. You can see new screenshots for this expansion pack and for 3DO's other upcoming games by clicking on the gamespace links above.

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