serious misgivings about Perfect Dark Zero

Last night the Xbox 360 was revealed to the world on MTV. In America. This is not an issue I care dearly about, since I'm playing fewer and fewer videogames these days, but it is interesting that the astoundingly long-awaited Perfect Dark Zero was revealed in playable alpha form. This game, promised as a launch title for the Xbox 360 (in, presumably, November of this year), was originally supposed to be a launch title for the GameCube and we've been waiting for it since PD was released in May 2000.

Here are a few images. I have to say now, I have serious misgivings about this. Firstly, Rare haven't made a decent game since, ooh, Conker's Bad Fur Day for the N64. Since that time, over half the Rare staff - most of their talent - left the company for Free Radical Design (responsible for the TimeSplitters series), and the studio was bought by Microsoft instead. Secondly, the game looks... really... bad. I mean, this is on a mind-bogglingly powerful machine (three 3.2GHz processor cores! And many other equally impressive numbers!) and, after five years of development it still looks like something from the PS1/Dreamcast era. Thirdly, a cherished example of the innovation PD0 hopes to bring to the FPS stage is the fact that players can pick up jetpacks to fly around. A play dynamic I last saw in Jet Force Gemini, SIX YEARS AGO. Seriously: right now, this game does not look like it will be able to hold a candle to the Half-Life 2s of the modern era. I've serious worries that PD0 may turn out to be marginally inferior to the original Perfect Dark.

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