Pre-E3 2006: Hellgate London

Here is a lovely, gloomy new shot of Namco's first-person RPG Hellgate: London, with more to feast your eyes on if you click on the images tab above.

Developed by the group of ex-Blizzard employees known as Flagship Studios, the game is set in the near future where the demonic invasion of the capital has divided the city between the netherworld Cabalists and the noble Templars.

And, while the game uses real London locations, a degree of randomization has been introduced so that while one player might be able to reach Big Ben through the now-destroyed Underground, another will have to risk going over ground into the urban wasteland.

So far there is no confirmed release date for Hellgate: London, with Flagship Studios promising to release it only "when it's ready," but we'll still ask the team about it this week when we push our way through the E3 crowds to get to the Namco stand.