previews\ Jan 28, 2007 at 7:00 pm

BlackSite: Area 51 - 360 - Preview

The original Area 51 was an arcade light gun shooter that used pseudo-full motion video of people in B-Movie alien make-up and set the action on rails. Then, a couple of years ago, Midway revamped the arcade game and turned it into a first-person shooter with a great sense of ambience and a much darker mood to it. Now, Midway is revisiting Area 51 on next-gen consoles in BlackSite: Area 51. The game will offer up the same blend of creepy ambience and stylish FPS action with the obligatory next-gen boost, as well as some nice squad command elements added to the mix. While the preview build that we played of the game was quite short, it still presented a good feel for the direction the game is headed. All things considered, BlackSite: Area 51 is shaping up quite nicely and should be an impressive jaunt into the unknown.

BlackSite: Area 51 Xbox 360 screenshots

The preview build for Area 51 took us to the small town of Rachel, which had apparently gotten attacked by some alien invaders. You are leading a squad of two other soldiers as you go through building to building, investigating the town. Eventually you arrive at a gas station that’s been turned on its head and you get attacked by several huge alien creatures as well as armed footsoldiers.

The team command options weren’t really presented much in the demo, but what we could see was pretty easy to grasp. All you’d have to do is press the A button when your targeting reticule lines up on a door or an area of interaction to make them react.

BlackSite: Area 51 Xbox 360 screenshots

Graphically, the demo presented some great next-gen graphical tricks. The character models looked very impressive and the rain effects and reflective textures were all very great.

BlackSite: Area 51 is looking to be yet another great entry to the Area 51 franchise and one that fans of the FPS remake will definitely want to check out. Look for it this summer.

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