No One Lives Forever Preview

In addition to a female protagonist with killer instincts, No One Lives Forever offers 60 levels of spy-thwarting gameplay.

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A ubiquitous Queen song from the 80s asks "Who wants to live forever?" If Fox Interactive's upcoming entry into the first-person shooter genre is any indicator, the question is moot, as no one lives forever. No One Lives Forever for the PlayStation 2 will be a port of a heavily marketed PC title, but don't let that fool you - it still has a shot at being a decent console game. How? Plenty of juicy 3D visuals and solid gameplay.

No One Lives Forever is a spy genre FPS title, set in the 1960s and loosely reminiscent of Nintendo's Perfect Dark. The protagonist is Cate Archer, a gorgeous thief turned anti-terrorist operative. Don't let her looks blind you, though, she packs a dangerous kick. With 30 weapons at her disposal, including pistols, an AK-47, a sniper rifle, and a crossbow, this lady is stacked and ready for combat. Add in vehicles, a few bulletproof vests, some grenade launchers, plenty of body armor, and the ability to use three to five different firing modes, and you'll soon come to the realization that Joanna Dark has nothing on Archer. If you've played Unreal Tournament or one of the more recent Quake mods for the PC, then you have a tiny glimpse of the idea that the design team is striving for here.

Still, what's a beautiful weapons-clad spy without a mission? No One Lives Forever will contain 15 single-player missions spread across 60 levels, as well as at least ten split-screen multiplayer levels. From Morocco and Berlin to the Alps in Germany and forests of the American Northwest, the power of the Lithtech 2.5 engine will bring across environments that are both realistic and diverse. You'll hunt down terrorists in a blowing blizzard, infiltrate a high-tech office building Mission Impossible 2-style, and even parachute from an out of control jet at 50,000 feet.

Standing against Archer will be more than 20 unique villains and a limitless array of their henchmen. From a fat would-be opera singer turned international criminal to an ultraviolent Scotsman, the enemies in No One Lives Forever are intended to be both quirky and ruthless. With an advanced AI system that takes into account the sound of footsteps, the roar of weapons fire, the discovery of dead bodies, and enemy teamwork, the enemy soldiers in No One Lives Forever aren't your garden-variety idiots, either. If you shoot a guard in earshot or sight of another, Cate will be targeted. If you get into a skirmish with a couple of ill-prepared foes, they might just call in five of their closest friends to join the fray.

Wrapping it all together are the visuals that the modified Lithtech 2.5 engine offers. A complex skeletal animation system will give characters realistic movement and recoil, while the game's damage system will ensure that each kill will be different from the last. Ambient lighting, glistening weapons, glossy surfaces, 32-bit textures, and objects composed of thousands of polygons are just a few of the many ingredients composing the world of No One Lives Forever. For cinema junkies, a number of FMV sequences advance the game's story. If early screenshots are any indication, this baby is going to show just what the PS2 can do.

The development team says that the game is progressing nicely, with only a few features left to be ironed out - which suggests the possibility of PS2-specific bonuses. Unfortunately, Fox is keeping tight-lipped about any of this until after the PC version comes out. Look for the PC release this Halloween, with the PS2 release sometime in early 2001.

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