E3 2011: Star Trek Demo Preview
Bones, will you help Spock and me in this co-op action adventure? Damn it Jim, I'm a doctor not a digital game protagonist.
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Star Trek has garnered a ravenous fan base for more than 50 years. This has been further enhanced by the success of the 2008 movie reboot. Now, with a theatrical sequel on the horizon, it seems obvious to forge a video game tie-in. Digital Extremes' Star Trek fits sometime between the events of the first and second movie, and the developers have been working closely with Bad Robot to make every aspect authentic. Production blueprints from the movies have been used to re-create all of the intricate details of the Enterprise and Star Fleet gear. Some creative liberties were taken with the new unnamed enemy designs, but they still blend well with the Trek universe. The live demo we saw brought us into a dangerous scenario that may or may not be part of the story's canon.
At its core, Star Trek is a cooperative action game: One player controls Kirk and the other Spock; each character sees the story from his own perspective, records his own personal logs, and has unique abilities. Returning via shuttle craft, Kirk and Spock discovered the Enterprise battered, adrift, and guarded by mines. None of their hails were answered and with a sea of depth charges, the captain and his science officer made a risky jump through space. Kirk led the deadly voyage through the minefield, with Spock right behind. The duo space dove through the hazards, swiftly dodging the mines and debris obstructing its path. With a quick use of the tricorder, they opened one of the Enterprise's many trash chutes. Spock landed gracefully, while Kirk smashed into a pyramid of stacked boxes.
After dusting themselves off, the two armed themselves with their respective weapons. Kirk brandished his special captain-issue Star Fleet phaser. This gun is flashy, extra powerful, and can be set between a shocking stun blast and a full vaporizing kill. Spock's Vulcan disruptor is faster, sleeker, and quiet. Its special shot even freezes enemies in place, allowing Spock to sneak up and nerve pinch or mind meld with enemies. The officers moved into the shuttle bay where they encountered the invaders. These beefy aliens clad themselves in full battle armor, donned with glowing helmets akin to Killzone's Helgast. Kirk and Spock took cover and readied for a shoot-out.
Kirk shot down the snipers perched from the right-side ledge and used his tricorder to manipulate the Star Fleet cargo crates; cutting off enemy paths and removing their cover. Even when killing a good number of enemies, the alien forces overpowered Kirk and downed him into a prone position. The captain wasn't one to give up and crawled back while blasting suppressant fire. During this time, Spock had been stealthily sneaking about and freezing some of the aliens. The Vulcan approached one of these victims and used mind-melding powers to coerce the soldier to his side. The brainwashed enemy laid waste to the rest of aliens, giving Spock time to help Kirk and escape the situation.
The goal was now to heal Kirk at sick bay. With full vigor, Spock was the one moving the conjoined pair, though his arms were wrapped around the captain's body. Kirk, on the other hand, was weak and disorientated but still had enough energy to fire his phaser. Working together, Spock moved them through the corridors, while Kirk blasted anything in their path. They reached the medical center, and Spock put his friend on the operating table. Though no Bones, Spock operated a console to manually suture the wounds. Likewise, it was Kirk who continually blasted the relentless enemies that bombarded sick bay.
Once healed up, the two advanced on, taking down more enemies along the way. They simultaneously used their tricorders to breach broken turbo lifts and discover new paths through the Jeffries tube. However, this all led into a trap that sprung knockout gas that forced the heroes into unconsciousness. The demo abruptly ended on a shocking cliff-hanger. Will the officers survive, or has the Wrath of Kahn met Generations? We'll know more when Star Trek is released in the third quarter of 2012 for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Windows PC.