It seems that the more people I ask, the more their responses lead me to a single conclusion: you either love or hate Driver. When the game is simply mentioned, it seems that people will either: a) remember one of the many sequels to the original, and all of the ways it seemed to fall short of its competition, or b) remember playing the original Driver, and spending hours upon hours cruising the streets of 70's San Francisco in a world that to this day remains one of the most authentic created for a driving title.
So for some of you, Ubisoft's announcement of Driver 3D for the 3DS will come as good news. And the screenshots available seem to imply that Ubisoft is taking the series away from the Grand Theft Auto-styled authenticity and heading into that of the comics. Take a look at the hand-drawn, cartoonish screens yourself:
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The art style is definitely the biggest difference for those who've been following the series. The gameplay shots show the largest difference from the usual realistic appearance to a cartoony, arcadey look. While the artwork will certainly remind many of the GTA splash screens, it's always nice to see videogames using hand-drawn artwork to set a mood.
I'm a fan of Driver, or perhaps it's more accurate to say that I loved Driver, the first installment. So when Ubisoft unveiled their new Driver announcement teaser at E3, I was sent back to my childhood frustrations of trying to accomplish the same tasks so easily managed on-screen. I'm ready for more, and from recent statements regarding Prince of Persia, it's clear that Ubisoft isn't afraid of entertaining very new ideas.
Hopefully Driver 3D will be more of a return to its roots, since Ubisoft seems to find nostalgia a profitable endeavor. But as we've learned from previous games in the series, we will have to wait and see if the gameplay backs up the cool visuals. We'll find out one way or another when it's released, suspected to be in Spring of 2011.
Where does Driver rank with you? Is it, as Ubisoft and Nintendo are hoping, a world you've been wishing to re-enter, particularly in 3D? Or is a new design scheme not enough to get you interested with so many 3DS titles to choose from? Let us know.