Ecco the Dolphin: Defender of the Future Preview
As Acclaim recently announced, two Sega Dreamcast titles are now headed for the Playstation 2. One of them, is the next installment in the Ecco the Dolphin series, which has been one of Sega's mainstays over the past few years. The most recent edition of Ecco the Dolphin was released on the Dreamcast back in 2000, and now this unique and innovative series meets the power of the PS2. Ecco the Dolphin: Defender of the Future, will combine all the aspects that fans of the series love with next generation technology. As expected, Acclaim was fairly excited about bringing this title to the PS2. "We're thrilled to continue our successful relationship with Sega and offer two proven brands that are perfectly suited for the expanding Playstation 2 audience," said Sarah Anderson, the company's Senior Vice President, speaking of both the Ecco series as well as Headhunter, their other title now in US localization stages for the PS2.
Ecco the Dolphin promises to bring some unique gameplay to the table in this next chapter, with never before seen underwater environments, utilizing adaptations from real underwater video and real time photography. The result of this stylistic approach should offer incredibly detailed and realistic underwater animations, coupled with life like creatures. The game looks to boast a wide array of sea life, including whales and sea turtles, and more menacing creatures such as stinging jellyfish and sharks.
The gameplay in Ecco the Dolphin will apparently receive some additional tweaks over its predecessors as well. There will be an in-game radar that will greatly aid navigation, making gameplay much less frustrating, which will look to be absolutely imperative in this game. Acclaim has announced that there will be 34 different levels, each modeled in a unique theme. Overall dimensions of these levels has not yet been revealed, but look for them to be bigger and more complex than ever. Additionally, each level will have their own unique puzzles to be solved. Obviously, given the nature of the hero in this game, a dolphin named Ecco, solving these puzzles will result in some pretty creative gameplay. To accommodate for this, the control scheme will be quite enhanced from previous games, coupled with the aforementioned radar to create even smoother gameplay than before.
Taking these puzzles and environments and building them into a well-crafted science fiction story is award-winning author David Brin. There has been little revealed about the specifics of the plot at this time, but more information is expected to be uncovered in the following months.
British composer Tim Follin has been commissioned to score the soundtrack in Ecco the Dolphin. Follin was quite a prolific composer of video game soundtracks in the late 80's, and has scored such games as Bionic Commando, Sky Shark, and Ghosts 'n' Ghouls. Acclaim reports that the in game music For Ecco the Dolphin will contain very mystical tunes that heighten the surrealism of this underwater adventure.
Look for more information to be posted right here at PSX Extreme as it becomes available.
2/21/2002 Ryan Hartmann