The gaming gimmicks of 2008

Really Real Fire

Now that videogames have nailed regular physics - crates, barrels, boxes and the like - it's time to embrace more ambitious challenges. Starting with fire. As any convicted pyromaniac will surely tell you, fire often seems to have a life of its own, hungrily devouring everything in its path. The exciting task for developers is to replicate the voracious, consuming nature of an inferno and realistically model the damage it causes.

Pseudo-sequel Alone in the Dark will use the dynamics of non-scripted fire in actual gameplay. Developer Edenwants you to"play with fire" and emphasise that fire will be the "main weapon against your enemies". Broken chairs and table legscan be held aloftfor light or swung like big burny clubs, but will eventually crumble in the heat. And, impressively, any fires that rage unchecked will spread through the environment, potentially cutting off your escape or trapping you in a fiery tomb. So it's fortunate that you'll be able to put out fires as well as start them.

Ben Richardson is a former Staff Writer for Official PlayStation 2 magazine and a former Content Editor of GamesRadar+. In the years since Ben left GR, he has worked as a columnist, communications officer, charity coach, and podcast host – but we still look back to his news stories from time to time, they are a window into a different era of video games.