Pre-E3 06: CellFactor Hands-On

PC: Multiplayer shooter with psychic powers could soon be coming to your PC

One of the games Southpeak Interactive was showing behind closed doors on Tuesday was CellFactor: Combat Training, a PC first-person shooter that blew us away with its ridiculously cluttered environments and interactive debris. Originally developed as a tech demo to show off what the developer's software could do, CellFactor is being considered for market, possibly as a multiplayer-centric or budget title.

Graphically, CellFactor is beautiful, looking like the drab-but-detailed Pariah with a high-definition facelift. But the real draw here is in the main character's psychic powers. Working like the gravity gun from Half-Life 2, they enable him to push or pull whatever objects are in front of him. This has been done before, sure, but CellFactor's take on it is unique in that nearly every inch of its levels is covered with some sort of debris, from random bits of scrap to big empty fuel tanks and shipping containers. All of it is movable, and even better, all of it is destructible -and it's really impressive to watch the %26ldquo;push%26rdquo; power send what looks like tons of individual pieces of clutter rolling rapidly forward. There's a strategic element to this too; if your enemies are in the way, they can get swept off the edge of a platform and tossed into a bottomless pit.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

After graduating from college in 2000 with a BA in journalism, I worked for five years as a copy editor, page designer and videogame-review columnist at a couple of mid-sized newspapers you've never heard of. My column eventually got me a freelancing gig with GMR magazine, which folded a few months later. I was hired on full-time by GamesRadar in late 2005, and have since been paid actual money to write silly articles about lovable blobs.
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