The stage for Digital Extremes’ movie tie-in Star Trek: The Video Game is set, with new versions of old enemies the Gorn waging war on New Vulcan, and Kirk and Spock teaming up and beaming down to stop them. The Gorn first appeared in a 1967 episode of the original Star Trek series called “Arena”, and though they’ve not returned to the show since, they’ve nonetheless remained popular among fans of the show, in particular because of an iconic fist-fight/rock-throwing contest between William Shatner’s James T. Kirk and a Gorn warrior.
Knowing that the latent popularity of “Arena” is an important part of the hype for the game’s enemies, Digital Extremes have released a new ad (seen above), which features William Shatner playing co-op with a Gorn friend, only to fly into a mild rage after getting killed in-game, and challenge his teammate to a recreation of their epic battle.
Despite Shatner’s insistence that “we’re both too old for this,” the fight is actually slightly more fast-paced and dynamic than in the original episode – the extended awkward grapple/bro-hug is cut down heavily for a start. The costume designers for the trailer have also done an admirable job of recreating the rubber Gorn costume from 1967, unless of course it’s the same costume taken out of storage and dusted off.
The trailer is actually rather light on gameplay footage, with most of the screen time dedicated to the live-action sparring, but we do get some new glimpses at the Gorn and – most importantly of all – a clip towards the end shows that Kirk can actually execute his iconic double ear-slap attack (ranked alongside Bruce Lee’s straight blast and Kung Fu Panda’s Wuxi Finger Hold) in order to free himself from the grip of a Gorn.
From what we’ve already heard there will be fifteen different types of Gorn enemies to fight in the game, starting with the basic normal/heavy/speedy/leader/boss types, but also including female Gorn (who can change colour to camouflage themselves) and lieutenants that are capable of turning invisible. In terms of gameplay, Star Trek is designed for co-op with Kirk’s set-up geared towards players who enjoy the cowboy approach, and Spock’s abilities favoring stealth and knowledge-mining, with the two play styles contributing equally to progress through the game.
Earlier trailers have promised a mix of different gameplay elements, including cover-based shooting, spaceship battle from the helm of the USS Enterprise, scripted sequences and – a central tenet of the modern Star Trek franchise – characters jumping from irresponsible heights. You can now pre-order the game and receive a series of perks, including different uniforms for Kirk and Spock, exclusive weapons and additional ammo.
Star Trek: The Video Game releases on April 23, 2013 for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC.