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July 3, 2005
Peter Jackson’s King Kong - Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Anticipation Players Price
17/11/2005UbisoftUbisoft Montpellier1$99.95

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Drop the spear, and run!
You can forget about what you thought was going to be the biggest movie this year. Star Wars? Perhaps. Batman Begins. Unlikely. Dukes of Hazard. Yar right. No there's something even bigger looming on the horizon. Something which we have seen almost nothing of to date with the first teaser trailer only just coming out with War of the World. In fact it's amazing how little information is available as yet considering the movie is none other then King Kong. Perhaps the movie alone wouldn't stir such anticipation however it is being directed by none other then Peter "Lord of the Rings" Jackson - now that's got your attention hasn't it.

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Battle in New York
As expected there's isn't a whole lot announced about Peter Jackson’s King Kong in terms of storyline but we can expect it to remain fairly faithful to the original's idea. That is, hunting party heads to remote island. Hunting party finds a big ape. Hunting party brings it back to New York. Of course there's going to be a lot more to it then that and as yet the screenshots are limited in what they show - with not a hint of monkey as yet. Ubisfot are promising that you wil be able to delve deeper into the film experience through alternative viewpoints designed to immerse the player into the action and truly “feel” the tension of the adventure.

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Some stunning graphics.
So we know that there's a lot of brilliance in the team making the movie but when it comes to the game Ubisoft aren't taking risks either with Michel Ancel leading the Montpellier studios to create this movie. Fortunately the developers will also have acess to the movie crew including Peter Jackson and perhaps more importantly WETA Digital who are doing all the special effects and modeling for the movie. As you would expect all the main cast have provided their likenesses and voiceovers for the game.

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Someone's gone skyward.
During the game you will battle for survival on Skull Island in a first person mode as Jack Driscoll (played in the movie by Adrien Brodie) as well as experiencing the staggering power of King Kong in third-person taking on massive beasts. You won't be on your own however as other members of your team will also play a part in the game and complement each other with valuable skills and abilities. The player relies on them and vice-versa to succeed. A unique resource management system keeps the action seamless and plausible while keeping items, weapons and assets readily available. Kong will use both his agility and his raw, brute strength by any means necessary to battle enemies and navigate though the perils of Skull Island. Some of the enemies encountered on the island have been designed by Weta exclusively for the game and won't be seen in the movie.

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Kong Vs T-Rex.
As you can see from the surrounding screenshots Peter Jackson’s King Kong is a stunning title visually. In fact so impressive are the visuals that I even re-confirmed with Ubisoft that these were from current generations systems and not next generation. Indeed we can expect these visuals on XBox and PS2 (unfortunately they couldn't confirm which platform these screens were from but did mention that the PS2 is the lead platform for the game). After the brilliance that is Beyond Good & Evil I have no doubt that Michel can pull this off. By the way, if you don't have that game hunt it down - it's a total gem at a bargain price these days.

God how I am awaiting the movie - and this game really does look like making good use of the license. The game should be released in mid-November, about a month before the movie.