It seemed the theme of this year's E3 show was down-sizing and Midway was following suit. There was no massive stage show with live bands and balconies full of cheerleaders. They weren't even in the main hall. Instead, Midway had a cozy room full of games setup in a classic arcade atmosphere. The only thing missing was the token machine.
Midway was showing several new titles, many of which have already released since the show. Here's a peek at what to look forward to this year.
MLB SlugFest Loaded (Xbox/PS2)
MLB SlugFest: Loaded is on-fire, in-depth and online baseball. "On-fire" means that gamers will get more over-the-top moves, more control on the mound, more options at the plate, more outrageous commentary from Tim Kitzrow and Jim Shorts than ever before. "In-depth" means that we've added arguably the deepest Franchis Mode ever in a baseball videogame. And "Online" means that the best multiplayer baseball game is ready for the largest multiplayer audience there is, world-wide. MLB SlugFest: Loaded is here! Get out of my way!
Everything you love about the SlugFest series is back and a whole lot more. In keeping with the tradition of releasing more "realistic" sports games, you can now switch between the arcade action of the earlier versions or take part in a realistic baseball simulation. SlugFest Loaded is also the first Midway Sports title to support Xbox Live and the first Xbox game to use the new Xbox Live 3.0 features.
Such visionary and ambitious game design earns this title our Best Sports Game of E3 Award.
Psi-Ops: The Mindgate Conspiracy (Xbox/PS2)
Your most powerful weapon is your mind in Psi-Ops: The Mindgate Conspiracy, an action/adventure game that utilizes extensive Psi (mind) powers combined with traditional weapons combat, providing gamers with unique gameplay attributes that clearly differentiate it from any other title in the action/adventure genre.
In order to combat a Psi terrorist movement set to overthrow world order, you, as an elite American Psi-operative soldier, must fight using Telekinesis, Mind Control, Pyrokinesis, Mind Drain, Aura View and Remote Viewing to win a very serious “mind game” against an army of brainwashed terrorist super soldiers and powerful Psi agents.
- An action/adventure game that utilizes extensive Psi (mind) powers including telekinesis, pyrokinesis, remote viewing, mind control, mind drain and aura view combined with traditional weapons:
- Telekinesis. The ability to pick up people and objects, then move, throw or smash them in any direction.
- Pyrokinesis. The ability to launch a wall of fire that ignites everything in its path.
- Mind Control. The ability to take control of enemy bodies and use them to solve puzzles, do surveillance or just open fire on other enemies.
- Remote Viewing. The ability to go “out of body” to see through walls or doors to plan your “attack” and/or get information you would not be able to get in physical form.
- Mind Drain. The ability to drain Psi power from enemies, which results in death to the victim.
- Aura View. The ability to “see” elements, enemies and clues that aren’t visible in the real world.
- Intense, fast-paced action with strategic decision-making and challenging puzzle elements. The emphasis is on action (80%), with tactical decision-making (20%).
- In addition to Psi mind control powers, players have access to an arsenal of traditional weapons. Handguns, automatic weaponry, sniper rifles, flamethrowers, rocket launchers and grenades—which, when combined with unique Psi powers, create an extraordinary and powerful gameplay dynamic.
- 50 Minutes of high-quality FMV tell an exciting and immersive story that reveals the mystery of Nick Scyrer’s identity and the origin of his Psi powers while infiltrating the compounds of “The Movement,” a powerful Psi terrorist organization.
- Eight huge and immersive levels spread throughout the world add to the intrigue and terrorist theme.
- Adaptive artificial intelligence makes enemies extremely aware of the player’s actions and delivers more intense, realistic fighting.
- Multiple methods for solving missions. The non-linear design allows the gamer to conquer the mission in multiple ways, allowing for endless replay value.
Mortal Kombat: Deception (Xbox/PS2)
Shocking and evil, Mortal Kombat: Deception pushes martial arts-style fighting and the Mortal Kombat franchise to new heights with an innovative fighting system, unparalleled depth and brutally intense action that will appeal to long-time Mortal Kombat fans as well as next-generation gamers. The game features lightning-fast hand-to-hand and special weapons combat, secret and returning characters, moves and combinations with new death-dealing battles and fatalities.
Mortal Kombat: Deception promises to take this revolutionary fighting franchise to a new level with a host of new features including multiple fatalities per character, multi-tiered interactive backgrounds and extensive new game modes, Mortal Kombat: Deception will set a precedent for all other fighting games to follow.”
Area 51 (Xbox/PS2)
Area 51 is the only action-packed 1st person shooter set in the U.S. governments most secret and secure military facility. The U.S. Army has received a distress signal from Area 51 where a viral outbreak has just shut down the research facility and the automated quarantine procedures have locked all scientific and military personnel inside.
A small Special Forces unit led Specialist Ethan Cole of HAZMAT (hazardous materials) Division is sent to investigate. As Cole, players will delve into five massive levels within the confines of Area 51, discover a mutagenic side effect of the virus that controls the minds of those infected, as well as an ancient alien colony buried beneath the facility. With a multitude of human and alien weapons, players must explore chilling conspiracies such as the extraterrestrial crash at Roswell and the faked lunar landing, in order to solve the enigmas of Area 51 before the viral mutagen is released and irrevocably mutates all life on earth.
Put your lightguns away. This is Area 51 like you've never seen it before. Prepare for one of the most intense alien FPS titles of the year.