It was about a year ago when Vivendi last invited me to take a look at Scarface: The World Is Yours. It was made clear back then that the reason that I wouldn’t see this game released for another year was that Vivendi had decided to wait for the next generation console hardware to arrive. Given the immanent release of the Xbox 360 and the fact that the PlayStation 3 was also due this year, that decision seemed like a wise one. So, imagine my surprise when once again Vivendi showed me Scarface, only this time stating that it would be shipping on PS2, Xbox and PC, without a single next gen console on the list!
I’m not sure what prompted Vivendi to make this u-turn, but I guess it’s good news for anyone who’s a fan of the movie but doesn’t have the cash or inclination to upgrade their gaming platform just yet. Vivendi tried to re-create Tony Montana’s mansion on its stand at E3, with the sweeping staircase leading up to a projection room – here the Press were shown a demo of the latest build of the game.
It was the PS2 version that was demonstrated and I have to say that it looked pretty damn good considering how near to end of life this hardware is. OK, I know that the PS2 will be around for quite a while after the PS3 launches, but it still impresses me when developers manage to squeeze just a little bit more out of an aging platform.
The character models look particularly good, and whoever worked on the Tony has done a really great job – he really does look like Al Pacino. Somehow the developer (Radical Entertainment) has even managed to avoid the blocky and angular appearance that often plagues PS2 facial models. The environments look bright, vivid and lush, just as you’d expect from a game set in Miami and there’s even some HDR lighting effects thrown in for good measure.
Rather than retell the original Scarface story, Radical has decided to play a “What if?” game – what if Tony didn’t die at the end of the movie? So, the game kicks off right at the movie’s climax where Tony’s mansion is under siege and he’s laying waste with an assault rifle, complete with barrel mounted grenade launcher. However, whereas Tony didn’t know that an assassin was sneaking up behind him, we do, so once you’ve dealt with him, you can turn your attention to escaping.