XIII What is XIII?

We begin our series of looks at Ubi Soft's upcoming, multiplatform first-person shooter.

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XIII is the upcoming multiplatform first-person shooter from Ubi Soft Entertainment. We recently got the chance to visit the Paris studio where the XIII team is hard at work putting the final touches on the game in preparation for its fall release. Over the next few weeks we'll be looking at various aspects of the game, and we'll also be hearing from the team in charge of putting everything together.

Based on its own merits, XIII is a stylish first-person shooter with some cool game mechanics. However, style and gameplay aside, XIII is primarily notable for two other reasons. First, it marks the first shooter to be developed by Ubi's Paris studios--known mostly for its work on the French developer's Rayman franchise. Secondly, and most significantly, are the source material elements found in the game. XIII is based on the phenomenally popular French-language comic series that was first published in 1984 and is still annually published. XIII is the brainchild of Belgian-born Jean Van Hamme and features a unique story that takes place in an alternate universe where the world has unfolded in a very different way following the assassination of John F. Kennedy. Over the years the comic has featured a dizzying collection of twists and turns involving everything from government cover-ups, shadowy military organizations, and murders, to the age-old, but still clever, use of main character amnesia. Ubi's French team has skillfully interwoven key storyline elements from the comic into XIII's gameplay to provide an experience that is quite a departure from your typical first-person shooter--and certainly a departure from what Ubi Soft is known for. In some ways, XIII's union of narrative and gameplay is similar to the underrated gem System Shock 2 for the PC. This comparison, however, is certainly not a bad thing.

For more on what XIII is, check out the first in our video series on the game here. Look for more on the game in the coming weeks.

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