Activision's PR Recreates True Crime Location at GDC Event

Activision's PR Recreates True Crime Location at GDC Event

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The PR for Activision recreated the Bam Bam Club from True Crime, complete with pole dancers.

The Public Relations department for Activision was in full swing to promote the reboot of the True Crime franchise at this year's GDC. Russ Pitts and I were treated to eye-popping visuals and amazing feats of dexterity, and the game looked pretty good too. We saw in-game footage of an early mission showcasing martial arts combat and chase on a stolen police bike. I was also able to speak with the executive producer of United Front Games, Stephen Van Der Mescht, on what sets True Crime apart from other games of its ilk. True Crime is due out this fall on the Xbox 360.

Van Der Mescht, who is of Dutch descent but emigrated from South Africa 12 years ago, believes that the most important gameplay feature of True Crime is that you aren't locked into one mode of play. The game has on-foot play, martial arts combos and shooting, and it seamlessly transisitons between those modes. "Missions don't play out just in running mode, or shooting mode, you have to use all of them in order to complete the mission," Van Der Mescht said. The team was inspired by the Hong Kong cinema style and the demo definitely seemed to play out like a scene from an early John Woo film.

He also hopes that that True Crime will have more of a global appeal, due to it being set in Hong Kong, a city with a strong East meets West background. "As with any open world game, the city is the central character," he said. Van Der Mecht's team spent a lot of time in Hong Kong cataloguing locations. They captured north of 27,000 photos and over 60 hours of video footage as research.

Part of that research was discovering Hong Kong's nightlife. As for Club Bam Bam, Van Der Mescht wanted his main character "to have a place where he can have fun with lady friends and enjoy Hong Kong's night club scene." Many thanks to the team for making that a reality in San Francisco.

True Crime has been under development for two and a half years. "It takes a long time to make an open world game," Van Der Mescht said. For him, it's important to make a game that "isn't just about action, but that presents a living breathing world."

If True Crime achieves that half as well as the PR team did recreating Club Bam Bam, then the game will no doubt be a success.

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Sounds neat, but this game sounds like it's going to try to do too many things and wind up sucking fumes.

I was one of the few people who actually liked the original game. It was very flawed, but there were moments of great fun hidden among it and the crimes response system kept me hooked for ages.
Too bad it's only on the 360, I'd like to see them use it to its full potential, so I hope I get a chance to play it.

Hmmm, well truthfully I do not see what is making this differant from any other sandbox crime game out there right now. Saying that they mix up the elements during missions doesn't surprise me, because most missions in games like this wind up having you do more than one thing (except for early tutorial type missions). You also pretty much have options on what to use in most of the combat scenes (including close combat) as a matter of course. Saint's Row even included multiple styles of hand to hand combat you could use that handled a bit differantly.

Really the only thing I think they are doing differantly is moving the game outside of the US to Hong Kong. I have mixed opinions about that choice of venue, but I suppose it could work if done right.

More or less it seems rather deritive. The kind of thing that someone would come up with by looking at the existing crime games and saying "Hey, what if we tried to reboot this franchise by combining Grand Theft Auto and Yakuza, we'll set it in China so people won't claim we're being a total rip off, and with a differant location we can also pimp it to the people who complain about all these games being set in the US in europe and asia and stuff who generally haven't actually seen the Yakuza games and others that have been doing exactly that".

Maybe with time we'll find out more about it, and it will take on more of it's own identity, but really it doesn't jump out at me as anything noteworthy.

Personally I'd like someone to build an action RPG in an open-world format set in a city like a Grand Theft Auto game. Something like a Shadow Run game where you could use guns, magic, cyberware, and take on missions for differant gangs and fixers. We've seen other games like that but not in this general format, and it would be differant than all the other open urban world games.

The first game was one of those missed opportunities. Honestly, I think I played it (on the Gamecube no less) more than I did Vice City or even GTA4. But there were just so many flaws, be it the glitches (the best I ever encountered was getting trapped in a fenced in area and spending 45 minutes trying to find a spot to clip through it), the somewhat loose hand to hand combat, or the awkward third act what the fuck is going on. But buried beneath them all was a good story, or three depending on how you played, some excellent driving and shooting, and some just plain fun in the form of actually being a cop. I'll never forget driving down the street in a stolen police car on my way to break up a cock fight. At times it was almost surrealistic humor.

If they can fix what was wrong with the original, but not lose its slightly sarcastic and light tone with the odd ridiculously dark moment thrown in, I think this could be quite the game.

What this guy believes is the 'most important feature' is actually something that was present in the other sandbox crime games from the start. Its sad when your 'most important feature' is fixing something you messed up last time.

I'd have thought that after last week, Activision's PR dept would have more sweeping under the carpet to do still...Bleh.

Not sure what to think of the game yet, but I've gotta be honest, it sounds like your average sandbox crime game at present. Only not based loosely on New York, for once.

I enjoyed Streets of L.A and only liked New York, so I hope they don't fuck this one up.

Lets not have a repeat of the zombies, Chinese ghost man and his fire dragon from the first one, shall we?

This "reboot" sounds quite similar to what the first one actually was which is not a bad thing cos that was a kick ass game, well until the story randomly started being about demons and supernatural shit out of no where but apart from that i loved it and had a lot of fun with its unique take on the sandbox style gameplay.

Then the second just copied GTA and was utter kack so lets hope they don't make that mistake again and that it is more like first then the second.

Well, how very, very nice of them. Now we shall surely forget that they're one of the three greatest assholes in the industry.

>.>

If its something they do well its PR...lol.

Well, time will tell if it will be a revitalised francise or just a rottign zombie..

So, they re-created a pole dancing club at GDC for "authenticity"?

Pull the other one guys, it's got foot and mouth.

"Horatio, Activision recreated a strip club from one of their games at a gaming convention."

"Looks like PR..." *puts on shades* "...is trying to dance on a different pole."

YYYYYYYYYYYEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I like the original.

I LOVED the sequel in New York.

I'll be watching this...

Ugh, using pole dancers now to attract perverted gamers -_-

guess they realized if they released it on the PC noone would buy it after what they did last time

Furburt:
I was one of the few people who actually liked the original game. It was very flawed, but there were moments of great fun hidden among it and the crimes response system kept me hooked for ages.
Too bad it's only on the 360, I'd like to see them use it to its full potential, so I hope I get a chance to play it.

I am also part of the liking True Crime demographic!

The second one can suck it though.

I was hoping to see more pole dancer footage. But on the topic of the game, never actually played the first, but this one is sounding pretty interesting. Might have to give it a look.

Wait seriously True Crime is coming back. Excuse me a second *leaves room*.

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!

*Comes back* Fucking hell that makes me happy, I loved those games, LA was better in every way and NY was a bitch of a dissapointment, still good though.

Xyphon:
I enjoyed Streets of L.A and only liked New York, so I hope they don't fuck this one up.

Lets not have a repeat of the zombies, Chinese ghost man and his fire dragon from the first one, shall we?

I liked those bits, they were the fun sort of cliche like house of the dead overkill.

I hope they do better this time. I really liked TC:SoLA. Once you've played enough, you'd start to see that each of the tons of unique crimes had a distinctive behaviour... like how drug dealers and arms dealers were more or less the same mission, but arms dealers would always resist while drug dealers would almost always try to escape, or how muggers would always, ALWAYS surrender. It was a good, albeit unpolished game. NY tried to be more like GTA and was pushed out too soon, so it failed miserably. (Although it had a hilarious glitch in which a chopper-style bike had (probably) negative weight, so it behaved like a hover bike and would go flying if you so much as hit a curb.) Maybe they'll do it right this time. It's also good to see a game taking place outside of the US (or Eagleland) for a change.

 

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