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Death Jr. Preview

Scheduled release date:
June 2005

You've probably already read

of Death Jr. (if you haven't, feel free to click over to it whenever). Here at E3, Capcom

has the finished game playable on the show floor.

Now that we finally have a chance to see the game in motion and control it, we're more psyched than ever.

First of all, the screenshots don't do this game justice. The simple "Tim Burton-esque" visual style looks sweet in motion.

In the cut scenes, the characters have such a wide range of facial expressions and gestures. The in-game graphics are

bizarre–twisted real-world settings filled with monsters. We played through the museum stage, where we were constantly

attacked by ogres and goo spitting demon dogs. Ick. The animation is smooth and rubbery (all of the creatures are zombies and

monsters), and Death Jr seems to have at least a dozen different scythe attacks.

Initially, we thought Death Jr. was going to be primarily a platformer. Now that we've had a chance to play it, we realize

it's more of a beat 'em up / shoot 'em up with platforming tacked on. Death Jr. can run, jump, glide, and grab onto ledges

with his scythe, but the lion's share of commands involve attacking and dealing with enemies.

The square button controls Jr's scythe. You can tap it multiple times to swing it around, or press combinations of the

square, X, and triangle buttons to perform combos. There are also a variety of different weapons in the game. Jr starts out

with a gun, which we were easily able to draw and fire with the circle button. When a weapon is drawn, a targeting cursor

appears to show you where to aim. Normally the analog stick lets you move Jr around, but you can hold the R trigger to

strafe. Basically, it's a beat 'em up and a shoot 'em up in one game.

This is one hectic game. Every hallway and room had at least a half-dozen monsters in it, and they don't wait around to

attack. Unlike most games where monsters take turns, the evil creatures in Death Jr. pull back and attack from afar or try to

sneak up behind you. Sneaky.

Since there is so much combat, it looks like this will be the perfect game for folks looking for a violent action game.

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