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Fracture Preview Xbox 360

Writer: Anthony J Scarcella » Blog
Posted: 1st Jun, 2008

Publisher: LucasArts
Developer: Day 1 Studios
Website: www.fracturegame.com
Release: 4th Quarter, 2008
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Fracture! Who's heard of the game? No-one? Well, let me explain. Fracture is a new third-person shooter coming at you from Day 1 Studios for your Xbox 360 or your PS3. Or both, should you, for some reason, want to buy a copy for both consoles. We were recently given a demonstration of Fracture in action, as well as a hands-on opportunity.

Set 150 years in the future, Fracture tells the story of a United States torn apart by the effects of global warming. Split into two factions, the East and West, both have decided to start messing around with the human genome to enable us humans to survive in this crazy new world. This conflict between the East and West has also given rise to a new breed of army, armed with the ability to manipulate the terrain around them.

Yes, the trump card in this game is the terrain deformation and I have to say, it is rather enjoyable. Your avatar, Jet Brody (oh brother), is armed with something called an 'Entrencher'. You use this thing to raise and lower the ground as you see fit. You simply aim on the patch of earth, fire, and hey presto - instant mountains from molehills. Keep in mind, however, the terrain deformation abilities will only work on a natural 'ground' surface, so don't expect to raise concrete from the ground.

During the presentation, we were shown the first level of the game. Sharon Miller wanted to give us a bit of a show with the whole terrain deformation element, showing how you could raise the ground beneath an enemy soldiers feet, propelling them in the air. You can also do this for crates and boxes and, with some luck, kill a couple of enemies when they fall to the ground. In the reverse, digging in gives you a bit of cover from enemy fire. Your A.I. friendlies will cluster themselves in the hole you've made in order to protect themselves.

Anyhoo, onwards the demonstration proceeded. Arbitrary puzzles began to appear along the way, as well as new methods of deforming the terrain. We'll deal with the weapons: grenades. A Tectonic grenade will raise the terrain during the explosion, which gave us another cute demonstration of the physics engine running in the game: lob a grenade into a group of enemies and watch them fly as the terrain bulges upward. After that were the Subsonic grenades, which do the exact opposite of the Tectonics. Next up were Spike grenades, which form a column of rock. Basically, you throw this thing at the ground and stand directly over it. When it goes off, you're elevated upward as you ride the rising column. This was used to reach normally inaccessible areas.

'Normal' combat in the game is the standard affair. Shoot the bad guys and proceed forward. From what we were shown in the demonstration, as well as the hands-on section (which I'll come to later), the game's progression is linear, which is a bit of a shame. There are no health packs ...

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