Capcom has signed on to publish third-person shooter Without Warning on PS2 and Xbox. Due out across PAL territories this autumn, the game is the first from Circle Studio, the UK-based outfit set up by former Core Design boss-men Jeremy Heath-Smith and Adrian Smith, and will be the first European-developed game Capcom has ever published.
The game they're probably not abbreviating to "double-dubya" is set during a terrorist siege of US-based Peterson-Daniels Chemical Facility, which has the potential to become a devastating ecological hazard if destroyed, and takes place over a 12-hour period as a covert ops team is sent in to try and eliminate the threat and liberate hostages.
Interestingly though, you won't just be covert-opping it; instead you'll play from the perspectives of six different characters caught up in the crisis. Controlling each one individually, with focus shifting between them at key moments during cut-scenes, you'll perform actions in one role that influence the progress of all, and you'll also be able to retrospectively view events through the eyes of other characters.
The six you'll come to know are Kyle Rivers (experienced covert team leader), Jack Hooper (the rookie on the team, on his first mission), Ed Reagan (bomb disposal expert and formidable close combatant), Tanya Shaw (a civilian; a terrified secretary trying to escape), Dave Wilson (a security guard overlooked by the terrorists) and Ben Harrison (a news cameraman grounded when his chopper is downed by the terrorists).
Circle is promising a mixture of exploration, puzzle-solving and action in dynamic environments with sub-missions including bomb defusion and hostage rescue. You can catch a glimpse of some of that in the first screenshots of the game released here.
Admittedly there's bound to be some uncertainty over the UK developer after the disastrous Tomb Raider: Angel of Darkness signalled the end of Core's involvement in that franchise last year, but Without Warning sounds interesting. Who knows? It might just creep up on us and turn out to be pretty good. Let's hope so.