Long read: Who is qualified to make a world?

In search of the magic of maps.

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Infogrames takes us to the movies

Stuntman, Unreal triplets, Superman, Godzilla and Superman

Settling down in a comfy leather chair, presumably modelled after the one Morpheus used in the Matrix, Infogrames proceeded to reel off footage of six titles on the way in the near future. The board above the theatre entrance proudly displayed the words "ENTER THE MATRIX" amongst five other teasers, and as we scuttled through the door our anticipation swelled. The show kicked off with a fairly uneventful trailer of Reflections' new driver, Stuntman. Unfortunately we didn't really get to see anything new, especially since we had been playing it an hour previously in the PlayStation Experience. Moving on, the next games to grace our screens were Unreal triplets, the highlight of which was definitely Unreal 2, fluttering its eyelashes seductively and winning us over with some incredible draw distances and gorgeous visuals that earned their place on the big screen. Superman was up next in a trailer for his Xbox outing, and we were immediately impressed with how the game was looking, in particular the immense, sprawling comic book cityscapes stretching out into the distance. This was the perfect background to the wonderfully overblown special effects utilised by Superman and the various villains on display - flying around wielding large chunks of civic buildings looks like great fun. We also got to see the other Superman game in development, Shadow of Apokolips, this time on PS2 in a cel-shaded form more suited to his ancestry. The PS2 adventure is looking good, but nowhere near as technically impressive or indeed as fun as the Xbox title. Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee on the GameCube made an appearance, and it looks insanely fun. We couldn't help displaying a broad grin as the enormous mutant lizard and a variety of other bizarre adversaries attack each other with some spectacular special effects, all the while stomping the surrounding city to the ground. Superb. We've been extremely worried about Terminator: Dawn of Fate on the Xbox since we first got our hands on some screen shots a few months ago. The trailer for the game on show served only to increase those fears as we were shown an entirely CG sequence, and a fairly unimpressive one at that. We could and should be excited about a Terminator license, but Infogrames were reluctant to show us what the game actually looked like. Ho hum. Oh, and what of The Matrix? Saved for the end of the showreel, Infogrames had decided to tack on the Matrix Reloaded trailer that's been swimming around on the Internet for months now. Cheeky devils.

The man of steel