Capcom’s last game in the Lost Planet series wasn’t met with much excitement at retailers when it launched back in 2010, and many fans feared that the franchise may come to an end after lackluster sales. Capcom has a different solution to scrapping their struggling franchise though — and that is to give the series a complete facelift/reboot with the newly announced Lost Planet 3.
Spark Unlimited, the new developer for Lost Planet 3, will be taking up the mantle for the third installment in the bizarre third-person shooter property. The developer is known for ill-recieved games such as Legendary: The Box and Turning Point: Fall of Liberty (and was even rumored to once be working on Star Wars Battlefront 3), so there’s certainly a large amount of skeptisism that followers may have with this announcement. Fortunately, important team members who worked on the first two LP titles, including series creator Kenji Oguro and Capcom producer Andrew Szymanski, have been involved with Lost Planet 3 since development first began.
Lost Planet 3 will once again throw players onto the ice-covered planet known as E.D.N. III, and will act as a prequel to the events that occured in the first game. The campaign in this game is said to be heavily focused on a single character, a nice change of pace for anyone who found themselves confused by the continued changing of main characters in Lost Planet 2. The protagonist this time around is Jim as he attempts to gain valuable resources from the planet, while trying to stay alive between Akrid attacks.
Lucky for Jim he’s got a thirty-foot tall NEVEC-funded mech that is outfitted with a drill and claw that can be used to crush vulnerable Akrid. The mech can also be upgraded to enhance its abilities through the collection of thermal energy (that orange glowing goop that shoots from Akrid after they’ve been killed). Controlling the mech is also handled from a first-person point of view, which is radically different from the third-person view given to those opperating VS Mechs in past games. Massive storms will also provide ample trouble for newcomers and veterans alike, so upgrading the mech becomes absolutely essential.
The addition of a more personalized mech also adds to the game’s combat quite well. Certain giant bosses that appear whilst Jim is in his mech can be dispatched pretty quickly. The crab-looking monster from Lost Planet 3‘s official trailer literally requires players to catch its claw mid-swing and hammer their drill down onto its exposed, glowing, T-Eng filled weak spots. Other bosses will require players to expose a weak spot on an enemy Akrid before hopping out of the mech (which can be done at any point in the game) and proceeding to fill the beast with lead on foot until it’s been slain.
As Jim progresses through the story, he’ll learn that NEVEC’s plans for E.D.N. III may have been a little shadier than initially believed. Players begin their journey in the main NEVEC base, where Jim can walk around and interact with the base’s other inhabitants — even grabbing a few sidequests to help make some additional funds. These bonus quests, along with story missions, will lead Jim to areas known as ‘horror’ sections, that’ll feature narrow passageways illuminated by flickering lights and Akrid ready to jump out and claw your face off at any moment.
Lost Planet 3 will be an open-world experience filled with monsters and missions that players can engage in, but since the single-player component sounds way deeper then the series has ever gone before, some fans may be concerned that multiplayer will be in jeopardy. Lost Planet creator Kenji Oguro assured those in attendance that Lost Planet 3 will feature multiplayer, but to what extent is unkown. It seems unlikely that co-op will be returning given the depth and how immersive single-player focused scenarios are for the game’s story, but Capcom has yet to officially rule out the fan-favorite mode.
Lost Planet 3 will be launching on the Xbox 360 and PS3 at some point in 2013. A Wii U release was not confirmed by Capcom.
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