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    Oct 1999

    Matrix online

    quem pegou o video de matrix online? esse jogo vai ficar indecente.

    eu estou atras de informaçoes dele desde q foi anunciado e finalmente consegui na E3. aqui vai uma entrevista q eu peguei na net.

    obs: nao vou resumir

    Walking through the blinding, pounding, sense-shattering halls of E3 is enought to make anyone think they're hallucinating. That's why when Travis Williams, one of the developers of Monolith and UbiSoft's The Matrix Online asked me if I wanted to sit down for a demo of the game, I thought it was merely another illusion brought on by exhaustion and fried synapses. "Sure" I answered, wondering if he was also going to offer me a red or blue pill. Then he brought me back into a dark corner of UbiSoft's booth, took me through a locked door and into a white tiled area that bore a startling resemblence to "The Construct" from the first film. I sat down on an uncomfortable white chair and was swept into the world of The Matrix.

    Apparently, Matrix Online takes place sometime after The Matrix: Revolutions, the third film in the series. Although they were careful not to reveal any hints of the plot of either the second or third movies, obviously at this time the Matrix still exists, although more and more people are waking up to reality and choosing up sides. Some people - called "Zionists" after the last human city, want to break the matrix and reclaim the real world. Others, seeing the devestation of reality, cast in their lot with the machines and fight to keep humanity in their virtual prison. Deciding which side to join will be one of the first decisions a player has to make.

    Clothes make the rebel in The Matrix OnlineAs the rooftop scene displayed on screen with two players facing off in combat, what jumps right out is the striking difference between the ordinary citizens populating the Matrix and the player's avatars. In this world, clothes really do define who you are. Neo's band of rebels in the film are decked out in snappy black leather trench coats and form fitting combat gear that are as much a part of them as their kung-fu skills. Players too, will mark their growing abilities and power by being able to upgrade to cooler and cooler clothing. The player's initial RSI (Residual Self Image) will outfit them with ill-fitting suits or torn jeans and sneakers at the beginning, but upgrades in clothing come soon enough. Indeed, Monolith, the game's developer, apparently has one woman who's entire job is developing cool new outfits to wear.

    After displaying some of the hundreds of outfits (both male and female) that will be available, Williams took a "hard line" down to the street level and took me on a virtual tour of the city. According to Williams, every building I could see on the screen was real, absolutely nothing was mere window dressing. If I was looking up at an 80 story office tower, all 80 floors were modeled and available to be visited. The city also has no "Zones" as in Everquest or other MMOs, everything in the game, both indoors and outdoors, is loaded dynamically as the player approaches. The game runs on an engine that displays "rich world elements". Basically, this means that what the player sees is based on processor speed - players with slower processors won't see some of the game's little touches such as pigeons clustering on the sidewalk or the beautiful sheen on leather clothing, but players with higher end machines are in for a graphic treat. Williams called this "Future-proofing", letting the game's engine grow with ever-increasing hardware power, hopefully allowing the game to remain graphically competetive longer than some older looking MMOs.

    One of the most impressive demonstrations of this "No Zones" concept was simply walking into an abandoned tenement and peering out a window. Rather than being teleported to a nebulous indoor otherworld, you could look out the window into the street and continue to see the life of the city and other players walking around. Although he wouldn't say exactly how much space The City covers, he used the tiles on the wall to illustrate. Basically, if Sydney, Autralia (where the movie was filmed) was one square inch in size, The City in Matrix Online is at least a square foot of territory. All this space won't be available as the game launches, but they're planning on rolling it out over time.

    Regardless of which side the player chooses, Zionists or machines, missions will be available for the taking. Missions apparently will take place in a Matrix "sub-system" - a seperate area where slightly different rules apply - including bullet-time in combat. Apparently only one group from each side will be able to access a specific mission at any one time and they may compete with each other to either complete it or prevent their opponents from doing so. According to Williams, this is to maintain a dynamic game flow and keep people from standing around doing nothing waiting for a particular mission to spawn.

    The City awaits you...Of course, the Matrix would be nothing without fighting, and I got a small demonstration of that as well. The first thing Williams did was show off the flexibility of the models. Although the game doesn't have rag-doll physics (yet!), it does have impressive finger and joint articulations. This is especially important in a game where a great deal of the fighting will be done in a martial arts style. Although the effect was subtle, having one fighter make true contact with another with splayed finger contributed greatly to the sense of realism.

    Players also don't directly control their fighter's moves. Rather fighting seems to be based on a rock-paper-scissors system where players choose their fighting styles from a pop-up control panel. He also mentioned that the game's currency will be upgrades to a player's program. Basically skills within the game are discrete bits of software that players can aquire and trade like money. Just as Trinity in the original film had a helicopter pilot program downloaded to her, players in the game will be able to find and acquire software that will improve their fighting skills, help them shoot or just make them look cooler while performing mundane activities.

    As the demonstration ended and I picked up my belongings and got ready to return to E3, Williams did offer me the chance to ask any one question about Matrix Online. Without even thinking, the first thing that popped out was "What about Agents? What role do they play in the game?" He smiled enigmatically and said, "I can't tell you everything but I can tell you that Agents play roles similar to dragons in fantasy based games. Until you have built up your stats to an unbelievable level, my advice is the same as Morpheus' - 'Run!'"

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