Perfect Dark Zero Xbox 360

Perfect Dark Zero, it is probably the most talked about next-gen title on the internet at the moment; It is on the tip of ever gamers tongue and will probably remain so until late November (early December for us European folk) when the gaming public finally get there hands on the long awaited title and finally find out if it really is as good as they hoped. Since E3, gamers have been on one hell of a rollercoaster ride filled with highs and lows as small morsels of media were released showing some good and some not so good (almost terrible) snippets of information for the game. One screen was so bad that one of the characters contained within was immediately christened “wallguy” and brought a tear of laughter to many gamers’ eyes as they aired their opinion on various gaming messageboards. After E3 there was a long period of silence from both Microsoft and Rare. What was happening behind closed doors that we had no idea about? Late July brought us rumours that wallguy had just suffered 2 long months of torture but we sadly have no evidence to back that up.

After what now seemed like an eternity new information finally stated to emerge and things were definitely starting to look better. This new build was without doubt superior than the E3 version. First off the game now looked infinitely better than before and it was pushing significantly more polygons but graphics is nothing without good gameplay and it seems like that had been given an upgrade as well. Talk of new multiplayer modes were also touted with two multiplayer modes called ‘Death Match’ and ‘Dark Ops’ being the only ones we know of at the moment. Death match should be self explanatory for anyone that has laid their hands on a FPS over the last years. Dark Ops however might need some more explanation as this mode revolves around the player receiving a set number of rounds and weapons when they begin and money is won for kills they achieve during the round.

Of course these are only the first two of the confirmed titles for the game. There should be many, many more in the final game, each with loads of options ready for you to tweak them as you want. We expect many, if not, all the original multiplayer modes to return and loads of interesting new features to be revealed once we get closer to release. A second aspect of the multiplayer mode was already revealed but this one was slightly disappointing as Rare revealed they had cut the option of 50 person multiplayer out of the retail version of the game reducing it to a maximum of 32. They did say that it would be possible to get 50 players (or bots) running and will almost certainly release a patch over Xbox Live a few months down the line. Since they don’t charge for this download this temporary downgrade should not be that bad of a bitter pill to swallow.

Now onto the single player or more specifically the recent X05 event where the single player was first shown for the world to see. The level which was playable over the course of the show was tilted “Rooftops” which took place (perhaps unsurprisingly) high above the streets of Hong Kong. It featured Joanna Dark and her Father Jack as they fought through masses of enemies. Jack was on the lower levels battling through the lower rooms and streets as Jo sniped from balconys. This level perfectly showed off one of the game’s main selling points, the unique Co-op mode. ‘What is unique?’ you ask. Well first off it plays a lot differently than many other co-op FPSs you may have played as Jo and Jack will very rarely meet up as they progress through the levels. They must help each other as they fight from different points of view and offering covering fire for each other as they race throughout the levels. The demo also showed an option to see what your partner is doing via a picture-in-picture system that can be used in System Link and Xbox Live co-op game. Other new features that were seen in the demo included the “cover mode” which was accessed by tapping “A” which would lead to Joanna taking cover behind whatever part of the environment she was closet to. Hiding behind boxes and at the corner of a wall were the only ones showcased at X05 but we are sure there are loads more clever opportunities for this new feature waiting for us come December. From the little we have seen of these modes during X05 it looks like they work very well and should offer oodles of exciting moments over the course of the final game main campaign. Vehicles have also been announced and will be included in the game. Even though they were featured briefly in the original, Rare promises that they will expand on the original greatly with jetpacks, hovercrafts and motorcycles being included in the game which should offer lots of fun to be had in the levels they are included in.

Weapons showcased during X05 included the RCP90, Jackal, M60, a shotgun, and a six shot revolver, and of course, the standard scoped P9P. This is just a small amount of what is expected to be in the final version of the game. Each of these weapons are touted as having a secondary, and in some cases tertiary firing modes. The P9P had the option to screw on a silencer for anyone wanting stealth kills. The P9P also seems to have a small zoom function which when combined with the silencer should lead to some satisfying kills from quite a distance away from your enemy. The revolver had a one shot mode which fires one shot then automatically reloaded that bullet. Its secondary mode let you fire all six shots in a row which could be used while you were in serious trouble. The Jackal is a sniper rifle which also has a laser sight which can be coupled with its zoom function for extreme accuracy. The M60 is a machine gun which while fired continually causes the screen to violently shake which is a nice touch. The M60’s secondly mode is to shoot out proximity mines. Then there was the shotgun which was devastating at short range, no secondly mode was shown for this weapon. It has been said that the RPG and Laptop Gun will return from Perfct Dark but were not shown at X05. All the reload and mode changing animations for the weapons are beautifully created with Jo screwing on the silencer to her P9P looking absolutely incredible. Finally as you would expect each of the weapons have their own melee attach while fighting at close range. Stats also return after multi and single player games which is an option that was sadly missing for many a FPS over recent years. PDZ stats seem to be split into the regular kills and deaths of each player than was involved in the game. Headshots are also counted which is a welcome return from the original. More in-depth stats will be without doubt included in the final version of the game covering everything you do over the course of play.

PDZ has undoubtedly come on leaps and bounds since its E3 debut last May and we won’t beat around the bush when we say it needed all the leaps and bounds it could muster to develop into what it has become today post X05. It now truly looks like a next-gen title and does have the potential to be a triple A title. The final question that will persist until release will be the little issue of PDZ living up to the legacy that its processor has created. The original title had some great longevity and many people still break out their N64s for a quick shootout on some weekends even though it is now 5 years after the game release. Will we still be playing PDZ 5 years later in 2010 or will it be gathering dust at the bottom of our sure to be ever-growing Xbox360 collection a few weeks after Christmas? That surely could not happen, could it?