Rise to Honor Hands-On Impressions

We go hand to hand with a preview version of SCEA's upcoming action game at the PlayStation Experience event in London.

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During a recent visit to the PlayStation Experience event in London, we were able to get hands-on with a preview version of Rise to Honor, which is currently in development at SCEA. The game is a Honk Kong-action-movie-style fighter starring Jet Li, and it features an innovative combat system in which the right analog stick is used to attack enemies in all directions.

Within moments of picking the game up, we found ourselves involved in a fight with around six thugs in a café. As the thugs came within range of our attacks, energy bars appeared above their heads, and we set to work with the right analog stick. Being able to attack enemies in any direction is certainly a useful feature, and it's one that adds a truly cinematic feel to the action, but because the direction of your attack is all that you can control, you're left with the feeling that you're perhaps not playing quite as big apart in the action as you'd like. During combat, special actions that can be performed only at certain times are represented by icons that appear at the top of the screen, and pressing R1 quickly when they do will carry them out. The same system is used for performing simple tasks such as opening doors in the game, but with split-second timing we were also able to smash an enemy's head into a wall and throw a nearby chair in the direction of an incoming thug.

Once the combat was over with and the café had more or less been trashed, we found ourselves pursuing a boss character of sorts who was taking shots at us with machine guns as we ran around a walkway above a room. On this level we were basically just required to run as quickly as we could, avoiding obstacles and pressing the action button to perform jumps and forward rolls as indicated by the aforementioned icons. The level wasn't difficult by any means, but it did a good job of adding a little variety to the proceedings, and of making the game feel even more cinematic.

Guns will also have a role to play in Rise to Honor, but, unfortunately, we didn't get a chance to use them. For more information on Rise to Honor, which is currently scheduled for release early in 2004, check out our previous coverage of the game.

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