Glimmerati E3 2005 Hands On

We get a chance to play Glimmerati, the racy M-rated driving game for the N-Gage.

At E3 we got a chance to play Glimmerati, Nokia's M-rated driving game for the N-Gage. Although there seems to be several different modes planned for the full version of the game, namely story, quick race, and time trial, only story mode was available for the demo.

The setting for the part of story mode we saw was a location called "Le Grande Hotel," a place for you to hobnob with the rich and famous and earn your reputation as a member of the Glimmerati, the most exclusive driver's club in the world. Although you will presumably be able to move through several different locations, they serve as nothing more than backdrops for the characters you find within. Once inside, you merely switch between the different members of the social elite, each of whom offers unique challenges for you to complete. Even though the challenges each have an associated story, it's not apparent that they are interrelated, especially since the three challenges we saw took place in different environments. All of the levels seem to be nighttime cityscapes, one of which was visibly icy and the racing physics were noticeably different than the regular (nonslip) racing environments. None of the levels seem to be that big, but all of the challenges are constrained by a time limit, so presumably you won't spend much time exploring the levels anyway.

For one of the races, a sultry businesswoman named Nicole challenges you to ram into a moving van full of contraband before time expires and it is located by the police. In another, a man named B Dome challenges you to follow a roaming searchlight for a certain period of time without straying too far from the beam. The third race in the demo was simply a race, during which you had to beat a sleazy guy named Christos to the town hall in order to get a date with his girlfriend's sister. Aside from the implied risks and rewards, the gameplay consists entirely of the racing element, which feels fairly responsive and is running at a nice frame rate. All of the challenges give off the distinct impression that you're dealing with people who are both wealthy and above the law, which ties in nicely with the game's theme, which is that you must impress in order to rise through the ranks of the Glimmerati.

Glimmerati distinguishes itself by being the first M-rated game on the N-Gage, a rating which it earns for sexual innuendo. However, having mature content is not its only selling point, as the game has some nice atmospheric effects and looks pretty good in general.

Although we didn't get an updated date on Glimmerati, it appears that the game is still slated for a July release.

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