Bid welcome to Earth No More - a game that%26rsquo;s an awful long way away (we%26rsquo;re talking 2009 here, people), but has a mission statement that makes it damn hard to ignore. From a development house splintered from Remedy (of Max Payne fame) and 3D Realms, it%26rsquo;s all part of a concept known as the %26ldquo;cinegame.%26rdquo;
%26ldquo;Our ultimate goal is to bring games to the same level as film and television in terms of providing an interactive experience with emotional consequence,%26rdquo; says Samuli Syv%26auml;huoko, studio director at Recoil Games. %26ldquo;We want to tap into the whole gamut of human emotions, not just the low-hanging fruit like tension, excitement and fear. The single driving force behind all good films, for example, is drama. And to create meaningful drama, we%26rsquo;ve got to abandon the lone hero in favor of an ensemble cast. It%26rsquo;s this cast of characters that allows us to explore a fuller range of dynamics and conflicts that we%26rsquo;ve not seen in many previous games.%26rdquo;
Earth No More doesn%26rsquo;t deal with a silly alien invasion or pan-dimensional beings taking a sudden interest in world affairs; it%26rsquo;s very much the tale of a home-grown disaster and its effects on both planet Earth and a ragtag bunch of competing personalities you get stuck with. Your name is William Forsyth, and you find yourself trapped in a small New England town shortly after quarantine has been declared - due to a strange proliferation of War of the Worlds-esque red vines. From here on in it%26rsquo;s an adventure in first-person shooting through a cross-section of locations in the eastern US, as the mystery of exactly what%26rsquo;s going on, where the conspiracy lies and which of your squad members could well be complicit unravels.