Jetpacks are badass.
There are no two ways about it. It's practically a law. It's a universal theory. Gravity is not as dependable because of them.
Therefore, Capcom's Dark Void is already a leg up from all the other first person shooters that saturated E3's vast floor show.
You play as Will, a cargo pilot traveling a routine flight to London with his ex-girlfriend Ava. While flying over the Bermuda Triangle, Will and Ava crash land and are transported into a void between Earth and an alien planet. There, Will finds other humans who have been trapped there, dubbed the Survivors. Together with the Survivors, Will battles the alien overlords the Watchers, who enslave humans for their bidding and are treated like the gods they pretend to be. The Watchers have been banished from Earth by the Adepts, some pretty kickass superhumans.
While the plot might not be the most stellar story you've heard, what makes this game shine (apart from jetpacks) is the vertical cover system.
Instead of dashing left and right between rubble, buildings and barriers, you are now using the jetpack to leap upwards, grabbing onto outcroppings and cliffs. You can even hang from the cliffs and blind shoot your enemies, just like you would in horizontal cover. It's an interesting tie-in that rather blows the mind. You're suddenly moving vertically, shooting enemies beneath and above you, all in cover mode.Unfortunately, it can also be incredibly disorienting, especially when being attacked from multiple directions at once.
What makes the cover system that much cooler, however, is the jetpack. Having a hard time killing a Watcher biding his time behind a pesky rock? Getting tired of hanging around waiting for them to come into view? Getting a little dizzy trying? Take him out by zooming up to his level and blowing him to bits or tossing him off the edge in a kick ass melee move.
While in flight you can shoot, hover in place and even take control of enemy ships by landing on them and killing the alien inside. As well, by clicking down on the right stick makes Will perform a neat aerial manoeuvre to help him evade oncoming enemy fire.
Graphically, the game puts the Unreal Engine 3 to good use. When played, the demo ran smoothly with no visible chopping and average animations. Neither good, nor bad, it fits the bill as a standard current-generation game, visually.
The game has a projected launch date of fall 2009, to be released on Xbox 360, PS3 and PC.