Final Glimpse: The Rock's got a new recipe
After an excellent rebirth in 2001, Spy Hunter was once again in the spotlight, years after its debut in arcades (hint to Midway and Microsoft ? XBLA). However a poorly designed sequel stalled the momentum and the franchise has been hidden away since. Now with a movie coming starring Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson, Spy Hunter is set for yet another rebirth with the latest game entry, Nowhere to Run. At its heart, Nowhere to Run is set to offer the same sort of intense vehicle-based action that the modern Spy Hunter games are known for, but with one special twist that should break up the action if blowing stuff up with your car gets tedious. Due the first week of September, Spy Hunter: Nowhere to Run will hopefully redeem the series after the dud of Spy Hunter 2. At least it won't be long until we find out.
Like, say, KITT in Knight Rider, Spy Hunter has really always been about the car rather than the guy driving. Which is just fine because the Interceptor is a fantastic, shape-shifting car; all it needs is its own AI and it might be the ultimate car. Nowhere to Run does make the Interceptor the show star, but this time, there's more emphasis on the guy driving it ? Alex Decker, an operative looking to shut down, naturally, the evil corporation NOSTRA who wish to rule the world and stuff. Tying in with the movie, Decker is played by former WWE/F demigod Dwayne Johnson, better known as The Rock. So while attacking NOSTRA is familiar territory for series fans, they've never had a wise-cracking pro wrestler voice the driver; and given The Rock's natural charisma and acting skills, it should make for an interesting match.
It's not just about The Rock voicing Decker though; he also handled all the motion capture and animations for the character. Because, in the vein of so many other driving-based games that wanted to 'go GTA', Nowhere to Run actually features on-foot action when the Interceptor just isn't a viable option, or during the game when the car actually gets...um...intercepted by NOSTRA. The on-foot stuff is a mix of gunplay with plenty of heavy artillery, and naturally, plenty of melee combat, ranging from punches and kicks to brutal wrestling moves taking advantage of all that wrestling knowledge The Rock has. Whether it all works is uncertain now, but it will at least break up any repetitive action driving the Interceptor.
Of course there's still hot Interceptor action, and Nowhere to Run looks to turn the dial up to 11. The supercar will be outfitted with tons of weapons, like missiles, oil slicks, smokescreens ? all the usual stuff, along with plenty of surprises. Like before the car can shape-shift into a boat or a motorcycle, and the developers are making sure that many levels will contain plenty of opportunities to switch between them at will. However it doesn't appear that you can physically get out of the Interceptor during any of these levels, GTA style; instead the level structure will have these two distinct gameplay styles split up separate.