E3 2010: Driver: San Francisco adds coma-induced super-carjacking


The problem with most driving games, whether simple racers or mission-based open world games, is that it takes too long to switch vehicles. Even if you can just steal whatever you like, who has time to get out, walk around, open doors … it’s all nonsense. Turns out, being tied to your corporeal body is the real problem. Once you can detach your soul from your body, as you can in Driver: San Francisco, gameplay opens right up.

Confused? Read on. John Tanner, the main character from the very first Driver game, has returned in the latest game. Unfortunately, so has his arch-enemy, Jericho. And very early on in the game, Tanner has a disastrous accident that puts him in a coma. However, thanks to the wonder of video games and plot-convenient selective memory, Tanner doesn’t actually realize he’s in a coma. Now sure, there are probably many real-world coma victims who don’t know they’re laid up. But Tanner is uniquely, almost historically dense – he doesn’t realize something is up even though he seems to have gained a new SUPER POWER, called “Shift”, after his brush with death.

Shift is the big twist in Driver: San Francisco – you’re playing an open world, similar to a Grand Theft Auto game, and you can take command of any vehicle at any time. And by this, we don’t mean he stands in front of some poor schlub’s ride, waits for them to stop, and yanks them out of the driver’s seat. No, we mean you zoom out to a bird’s eye view of the entire cityscape and can insta-snap into any other vehicle you like (except for the one you’re chasing, we’d gather) just like the Agents in that car chase from the second Matrix movie.

Gimmick with a ridiculous premise or not, our first reaction? This. Is. AWESOME. For example, if you’re sitting in your muscle car and some perp drives by, pursued by a police cruiser, you can commandeer the cop’s car and take up the chase. And if your quarry dodges down a narrow side street but there’s a semi truck coming toward him from the other direction, you can shift into the cab, slam the wheel sideways and send 18 wheels of jackknifed big rig shooting down the street right toward him, three lanes wide. And that’s just a side mission you could make up for yourself. Imagine what opportunities await in the actual plot-related missions.

We’ll have more on Driver: San Francisco and Tanner’s questionable capacity for logic as it develops. This look legitimately exciting.

June 14, 2010

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  • nadrewod999 - June 16, 2010 3:34 a.m.

    . . . . . . . . COMPLETE AWESOMENESS!! I AM TOTALLY GETTING THIS! At least with this, being a criminal in a big city will actually be fun (you paying attention GTA IV? I'm talking to you, so listen up).
  • derrderr420 - June 16, 2010 2:42 a.m.

    dude, this concept is effing awesome, but generally with the last 4 driver games, your all going to be disapointed, while driver fans like me who can beat the original game in 3 hours will have to force are selves like the damn game like nintendo fanboys
  • Caio - June 16, 2010 12:43 a.m.

    Let's just hope this time Tanner STAYS IN THE F*KING CAR.
  • RCTrucker7 - June 15, 2010 3:15 p.m.

    @RedAppolyon What? The yellow car is a 70's Dodge Challenger R/T, the blue car with white stripes is an old Mustang, and the Police are driving the newer Chargers.
  • RedAppolyon - June 15, 2010 11:54 a.m.

    Is it going to have licensed cars in it instead of fake interpertations as the screenshots seem to indicate?
  • Joshin69 - June 15, 2010 10:02 a.m.

    Is this the final nail in the Driver series (or should i say the final nail in a long line of final nails)or will it actually work?
  • Spybreak8 - June 15, 2010 7:38 a.m.

    It's an interesting way of doing things. I wonder if they looked at Assassin's Creed because the memory thing is very similar. Never played any Driver game so I'm actually watching this one.
  • 510BrotherPanda - June 15, 2010 6:23 a.m.

    Huzzah, Driver is set in our city! I sure hope all the landmarks or districts are in their proper places: Union Square, Coit Tower, the Pyramid, O'Farrell Street, Golden Gate Park/Panhandle, Lefty O'Doul Bridge, Sunset Boulevard, Land's End, Twin Peaks, unreliable MUNI service, etc....but I can't play it because I've not an HD console nor am a saavy car enthusiast.
  • Cropes - June 15, 2010 3:54 a.m.

    To start, I want a super coma like this. To finish, this sounds ridiculous.
  • Wizrai - June 15, 2010 3:15 a.m.

    So getting myself into coma will grant me the ability to manipulate the minds of people driving? ...awesome.
  • whiteknight1981 - June 15, 2010 3:03 a.m.

    Ummm...super coma? Definitely a twist on the open world concept. And its good to know that the developers know that whenever Driver got out of his car the game took a turn for the suckage. Super coma powers activate! Now, I must away and sick the First police on Xenial!
  • thekeith82 - June 15, 2010 2:59 a.m.

    What is up with E3 so far? First MS essentially show off a bunch of Wii games, then Ubisoft follow up the theft of the vitality sensor with news that they are stealing the plot of life on mars. Right after the laser tag demonstration. I am...nonplussed with E3 so far.
  • Xenial - June 15, 2010 2:49 a.m.

    Eh, i don't think i'll be getting this. Sorry but i had to do it. :P FIRST!!!!! :D

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