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Giants: Citizen Kabuto

Giants: Citizen Kabuto is slowly nearing completion and the anticipation is mounting. Here's a Hands-On look at the game that is going to have players asking the question, "So who gets to be Kabuto?"

Giants: Citizen Kabuto takes place on a fragment of a planet called the Island, where three groups (well, two groups and one behemoth) are fighting for domination. Developed by Planet Moon, which is made up of ex-Shiny members responsible for games like MDK and Earthworm Jim), Giants contains beautiful graphics, tons of action, and bucketloads of humor.

The single-player experience seems to be of the third-person action/adventure variety with various missions to complete for each of the playable characters. Mulitplay, on the other hand, is a Tribes-style team deathmatch with the base-building elements of an RTS thrown into the mix.

The Meccs have access to an arsenal of weapons, such as the Peashooter and the Shotgun That Acts Like a Rocket, and are equipped with jetpacks for flying around. In multiplayer mode, The Meccs must defend a base, but must first capture Smarties and have them build it. The Smarties must be fed and this is accomplished by killing Vimps (the Island's version of cattle) and returning to the base with meat. As the base grows, the Meccs will have access to a greater variety of weapons and special backpacks, including one that lets a Mecc disguise himself as a bush.

The nymph-like Sea Reapers are armed with swords and a collection of bows, including homing and sniper bows, and have a variety of spells at their disposal, including Teleport, Cloak, and the fireball-like Cluster spell. The Reapers can also summon tornadoes and various creatures, like sea monsters, for massive amounts of destruction.

Kabuto, meanwhile, is the master of brute strength. Towering over the land, Kabuto can pick up his enemies and choose to eat them, hurl them across the Island, or impale them on one of his spikes for later use. He is also armed with a few mighty roars and can smash his enemies with wrestling-style body slams. By eating Smarties, Kabuto is able to give birth to offspring, which he can then command to fetch Vimps for his eating pleasure.

The graphics are a sight to behold with beautiful sky effects, smooth animations, and humorous character designs. And while the voices were not implemented in the beta version, the music by Mark Snow of X-Files fame was excellent and fit the atmosphere perfectly. The control is fairly simple and handles like most third-person shooters, although with several hotkeys to learn, it can be a little complicated at times. Hopefully, developer Planet Moon will be able to simplify things by the time Giants: Citizen Kabuto hits stores in October.

Source: GamePro [www.gamepro.com]

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