July 3, 2012

Hands On with Project P-100

Filed under: Editorial Rants — Tags: , , , , — Jamie Love @ 8:36 am

Project P 100
There’s a bit of a snipe hunt for the game that puts the Wii U in perspective and makes ownership mandatory, or at least that’s the vibe I get whenever gamers talk with me about Nintendo’s new hardware. Since the publisher recently held an event in Toronto to offer local press the opportunity to sample their wares from this year’s E3, I had the chance to revisit titles Nintendo is currently showing, still suspecting some surprise announcements before the launch later this year.

I can’t claim to have found a system seller in the mix, but a lengthy session with Platinum Games’ working title, Project P-100, did go a long way toward convincing me that the incentive for early Wii U adoption is materializing.

The game was stationed next to Pikmin 3, which made it easy to compare the surface play style as I took command of a squad of brightly colored super heroes from an angled overhead view. As with Pikmin, players lead their team into combat, commanding them to attack the various enemies encountered throughout the city. However, Project P-100 works to bring legitimate evolution to the familiar via the Wii U gamepad.

Project P 100
Players can draw shapes with their fingers on the pad, which grants their team of heroes the ability to morph into corresponding objects. Drawing a circle enables them to morph into a fist to smack enemies, while a straight line allows them to form into a sword and a bent line allows them to morph into a gun. This morphing ability is regulated by a gauge players will have to remain mindful of. A familiar game of attack and evade plays out against giant robots and crumbling infrastructure, certainly colored by an aesthetic reminiscent of team Platinum’s past work as Clover Studios with Viewtiful Joe.

Morphing into objects also offers an opportunity to interact with the environment, insofar as turning into a fist offers a chance to move large objects or turn a giant crank. The player’s super hero ranks can be replenished with civilians who cry out for help amidst the chaos, and can be encircled by the team to instantly be transformed into fellow heroes.

Project P 100
At one point I entered a building and had the perspective change, with the gamepad offering a third person view of the interior, which required me to change some dials to open the way forward. The demo ended with an impressively large boss battle that found my squad on the arm of a robot and battling enemies while hitting weak-points. Despite the initial similarity to Pikmin, that more methodical style of strategy melts away here, offering a quicker and more agile game in the Platinum vein, where jumping enemy fire and evading large attacks sees the entire squad of heroes follow the players lead instantly to feed the action – while keeping the morph gauge topped off proves the primary strategy concern.

Keep in mind that quirky Platinum titles are never easy to market, though Nintendo’s role as publisher and need for titles keeps me optimistic that fresh IP might have good opportunity during the initial launch window. While I’m certainly guilty of keeping an eye peeled for mention of a new Metroid of Zelda title on the hardware sooner rather than later, the unexpected gem potential of releases could tip the scales just as easily if ones such as this continue popping up around the launch window.

1 Comment »

  1. Cannot wait for this. Glad to hear you enjoyed your time with it!

    Comment by KnucklesSonic8 — July 3, 2012 @ 8:46 am

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