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Pn03


Meers
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You guys are messing with me again :(

Is this game a alot of fun then or a complete mess of generic shooting and dodging?

I am really wanting a game I can complete, then just return to every blue moon and have a laugh with it.

No copies anywhere in Derby so online it is :D

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PN03 is a 3rd person character based shoot em up.

It's all about risk and reward.

Do you stand there and thump the button as fast as possible to get that bast in time... pull off or a combo perhaps... or do you duck away like the girl you are and sacrifice the bonza combo bonus.

You decide!

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Are you sure that was definately a bug in the Japanese version? It would seem like a very obvious thing to get wrong.

Absolutley 100% certain. It's not a bug, just a silly omission.

not being able to move and attack at the same time spoils the whole idea (IMO!)

Not being able to move and attack at the same time IS the whole idea.

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Absolutley 100% certain.  It's not a bug, just a silly omission.

Well I'd consider it a bug :rolleyes: Especially since they got rid of it in other versions. I always thought they should have allowed you to carry through your time to the next room if you'd been doing well enough, you'd be able to get some pretty sick scores (though I doubt you could chain the whole level).

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It's all about timing and the beats of the game, you have to listed to the audio as part of the skillset used to play this game. Shoot and dodge that's how it's played.

I think I know what you mean about getting into a rhythm to play the game properly - like any good shooter you can really get into the zone - but I'm not sure it's the same rhythm as the music. I never found that the game rhythm matched the music in the way that Rez did, for example. Or is that not what you meant?

Still, it's a great game. I might have a quick Papillon arse-em-up session later on!

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  • 6 months later...

I fucking love this game :)

I had teh same problems that many on here have mentioned at first (it seemed sluggish, unresponsive, and a bit poorly designed), but after a few more attempts, its all clicked into place. It's just a mtter of learning how your character moves, and what to expect from the enemies. After you've done a coupl[e of levels, you'll have a better feel of how to play the game, and you'll find youself dodging about laying waste to the enemies without ever eth slightest consideration for the controls.

I have played through on Easy, did all the Trial Missions and beefed up all teh suits, and I'm halfway through on Normal now, beefing up the new suit (and some of the better top suits). This is a seriously good game. Not perfect, by any means. But damned great fun.

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I fucking love this game :(

I had teh same problems that many on here have mentioned at first (it seemed sluggish, unresponsive, and a bit poorly designed), but after a few more attempts, its all clicked into place. It's just a mtter of learning how your character moves, and what to expect from the enemies. After you've done a coupl[e of levels, you'll have a better feel of how to play the game, and you'll find youself dodging about laying waste to the enemies without ever eth slightest consideration for the controls.

I have played through on Easy, did all the Trial Missions and beefed up all teh suits, and I'm halfway through on Normal now, beefing up the new suit (and some of the better top suits). This is a seriously good game. Not perfect, by any means. But damned great fun.

.::: You forgot her lovely behind! The rest is all correct. ;)

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  • 4 months later...

.::: Oh, and Ghost is dead of course. But I'm merely resurrecting this thread because of EDGE's Time Extend:

P.N.03

Time Extend is a series of retrospectives examining the accomplishments of significant games and assessing their impact. In this Time Extend, we wonder if, as the least successful of Capcom's GameCube hopes, P.N.03's white lady deserves her reputation as the black sheep of the family

To some, poor sales are almost a guarantee of probity – a coded message that invites the initiated to come inside and get devotional. Look at Beyond Good and Evil, say, or Jet Set Radio Future: they didn’t hit the sales jackpot, but they struck a deep chord with certain players all the same. What’s odd about Capcom’s P.N.03, then, is that unlike other games that vanished at the point of retail, there are few people willing to speak up for it. Where are its devotees, its groupies, its cultists? Where are the websites, the fan fiction, the homebrew media player skins?

163extend_s.jpg

Maybe it’s because P.N.03 is awkward. Its controls make it awkward to play. Its commercial failure makes it awkward to track down in the shops. Crucially, the skewed challenge it presents makes its peculiar appeal very awkward to explain. This is a game that confounds on many fronts.

And yet, at first, everything looked so simple. The marketing hook is all in place. Vanessa Z Schneider: good look, great name. And the premise: run, jump and shoot. Nothing too controversial there. The setting seems a bit odd, perhaps – the game’s location resembles a Mobius-strip reconfiguring of Frankfurt airport – but even that isn’t too hard to explain away: it’s just minimalist chic, design as Design, a coffee table game.

Directed by Shinji Mikami, creator of the Resident Evil series, P.N.03 was one of the famous Capcom Five, and a comparison to another member of that group, Viewtiful Joe, proves illuminating. While both games have the same simple structure – play through levels, earn points with which to buy upgrades and continues – P.N.03 emerges as the inverse of Clover studio’s super-deformed cash cow. Viewtiful Joe is a comic book spending spree of variable-speed excess, a body-popping testament to cone fatigue. P.N.03 is all about restraint – its levels look empty, its enemies designed to the absolute minimum. And while the expert Joe player makes a mess of the screen, a glorious sprawling slo-mo collision of colour and movement, excellence in P.N.03 is marked, in direct contrast, by a quieter virtue: efficiency. One game asks you to be noisy and creative, the other asks you to be exacting and careful.

In fact, P.N.03 initially seems to have taken the concept of efficiency several steps too far: on first play-through, the game seems to be stuffed full of nothing. Power-ups are scarce, secondary characters are entirely absent and the plot (killer robots, murdered parents and other science fiction placeholders) is intriguingly anemic. There are no lock-and-key puzzles or context-sensitive actions here – even door animations while moving between rooms have been excised as unnecessary. And then there are the limits imposed on the player. You cannot save within levels. You cannot turn quickly, except by executing a 180-degree spin on the spot. Most importantly, you cannot move and shoot at the same time – it’s one or the other. Few titles have made so much out of what the player is not allowed to do. All games have rules, but in pursuit of stylised simplicity, P.N.03 has gone one step further and resorted to actual restrictions.

The all-pervading sense of precision and poise makes the game’s one terrible aesthetic slip all the more jarring. If any lead character ever reinforced Gordon Freeman’s decision to go mute, it’s Vanessa Schneider. For most of the game, she’s above words, beyond them. Her hips are her vocabulary, and that arrogant raised shoulder and endlessly tapping finger say far more than dialogue ever could. And then, in the space of one cutscene, she speaks, and the elegantly empty vessel she once was is filled with bitter bile. Vanessa Schneider possesses a voice like an aging Weimar receptionist manning the desk for a second-hand car dealership. No wonder she kept her mouth shut for so long.

This blip aside, though, the P.N.03 experience appears as one of cold, hard elegance – the sort of game people might sit inside glass boxes and play in the turbine hall at Tate Modern. Schneider moves and shoots and moves again. And that environment: cold, white, endless, unchanging. Enemy rubble dissolves, blast marks fade before your eyes, and all that lingers in the mind after play is the impression of simple contrast – black and white, white and black again.

Yet appearances will often deceive, and beneath the dark and light of which the game is composed, beneath the joyously pared-down aesthetic of cold gloss and brushed steel, a different kind of black and white emerges. This is not just a game of contrasts, it’s a game about contrasts. But they're not the kind you’d expect – not the easy ones like good and evil or innocence and experience. This goes far deeper, bypassing narrative entirely to explore its themes somewhere between the screen and the player’s hands.

While Schneider may slice through the air like an acrobat, skipping between bullets and sidestepping rockets, we on the other side of the television screen have to deal with the fact that she handles like a very old Buick. Her separate animations may be peerlessly graceful, but she moves between them in jagged bursts and in four simple directions only. Those elegant crouch and backflip displays are inversely proportional to the limited choice of movements. And it’s this dichotomy that provides the true point of the game, P.N.03’s unspoken challenge: make Capcom’s ballerina-shaped elephant really dance.

It’s a challenge that not everyone has appreciated. Austere and inflexible, the design of P.N.03 makes for a game that many players found unforgiving and lacking in pleasure. Played badly, the game is nasty, brutish and short – an unwieldy trip through over-stacked odds with a distinctly arbitrary feel to progression. Even the smallest slip is often punished heavily. However, when played well, P.N.03 canbecome something else entirely – a finely tuned display of poise and forward planning.

Mastery is not as impossible as it initially seems. Although players can trade in points to buy upgrades such as greater firepower and extra health, the real upgrade takes place in the brain: the trick to staying alive in Schneider’s world is to understand the way she works – and the way she works stands in direct contrast to the way most videogame avatars do.

On the surface, Schneider may echo countless other heroines – but her closest relative is actually a knight in chess. That quirky little item seems at first a useless mix of the cumbersome and the oddly precise, better at stepping around targets than into them. The knight is a piece that needs a warped – indeed, bent – logic to make it work at all. But a little practice reveals it to be a weapon of powerful insinuation: a gun that shoots around corners with unstoppable precision. Deadly whilst standing still and better at dodging and ducking than running and jumping, Schneider’s limitations suggest their own path of least resistance. Instead of a battlefield, each room is more like a three-dimensional puzzle, and Schneider is custom-built to move through it – rolling and sidestepping along the most elegant and destructive line from one door to the next.

Enemies move in strict attack patterns that must be memorised, sounded for weak spots and then exploited. Triumph over them follows upon the understanding that, with practically no AI, they barely know Schneider is there at all. Her dexterity at ducking and hiding suddenly makes sense: find spots good for a few safe seconds of shooting, and pick enemies off in the best possible order. Due to the relentless techno soundtrack and Schneider’s constant foot tapping, P.N.03 is often mistaken for a rhythm action title, and while this isn’t the case in the strictest sense, successful tactics still require the same emphasis on timing.

With this understanding, practice will eventually allow you to get the most out of Schneider, and the most out of P.N.03. Room after room of differing opponents presented in slightly shuffled combinations: while the pitch sounds like Halo, the implementation is closer to Galaga: Combat Evolved. It’s somewhere between ‘find a space, shoot, and repeat’, that this most chilly of contemporary videogames develops the warm glow only a sense of synchronisation between player and machine can bring. With patterns learned and attack waves studied, it’s possible to predict events with near-total accuracy, sidestepping and returning fire before the first volley has ceased. The sense of achievement is all the more keen because the challenge is so unfair, and the tools, at times, so purposefully inadequate.

P.N.03’s dance of frustration culminates in the eventual realisation that the game’s real mission – quite intentionally – is mastery of its own control system. The polar opposite of Mario and Zelda’s invisible interface, getting to grips with Capcom’s rules is P.N.03’s secret challenge and, perversely, its real appeal. Awkward, then, but still worthy of devotion.

http://www.edge-online.co.uk/archives/2006/05/pn03.php

Takes a while to get to the point giving me the impression that I've read everything in that article twice while only reading it once. However, now that I've read this I demand a Time Extend on GUNVALKYRIE which has the same 'problem'.

Also I think this calls for an YTMND of Vanessa's greatest asset.

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US version maybe? Bit too clubby for me, I like the leftfield DnB stylings of the UK version (if that's the right description).

FFS, can't you people spot a dubbed in soundtrack on a video these days? I imported the US version of the game. I have played this area in the game. It doesn't have the music the video does.

Going on about the "leftfield DnB stylings of the UK version" is just verbal wanking of the highest order. There ISN'T some ministry of style dubbing in somehow "classier" content into games for the UK, ok? Someone just dubbed a decent fucking techno tune onto that video. Jesus you people are a bunch of gullible fucks sometimes.

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FFS, can't you people spot a dubbed in soundtrack on a video these days? I imported the US version of the game. I have played this area in the game. It doesn't have the music the video does.

Going on about the "leftfield DnB stylings of the UK version" is just verbal wanking of the highest order. There ISN'T some ministry of style dubbing in somehow "classier" content into games for the UK, ok? Someone just dubbed a decent fucking techno tune onto that video. Jesus you people are a bunch of gullible fucks sometimes.

Actually there's some confusion as to whether the European soundtrack is the same as the Japanese one. The music featured in Mercenaries in RE4 certainly sounds nothing like the PN03 I've heard so far. I'm trying to verify it at the moment.

BTW, if you're going to accuse people of being pretentious, don't go on a virtriolic rant, it makes you look like a twat.

Edit - They're the same in the NTSC-US and PAL versions at least and, it seems that the RE4 versions are remixes of the originals.

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.::: Oh, and Ghost is dead of course. But I'm merely resurrecting this thread because of EDGE's Time Extend:

http://www.edge-online.co.uk/archives/2006/05/pn03.php

Takes a while to get to the point giving me the impression that I've read everything in that article twice while only reading it once. However, now that I've read this I demand a Time Extend on GUNVALKYRIE which has the same 'problem'.

Also I think this calls for an YTMND of Vanessa's greatest asset.

After reading that I'm thinking about finally buying it. I've been thinking about it before, but the critics weren't really happy with it. But I'm starting to love the way Capcom makes his games, so there's a fair chance I'll like this one just fine.

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FFS, can't you people spot a dubbed in soundtrack on a video these days? I imported the US version of the game. I have played this area in the game. It doesn't have the music the video does.

Going on about the "leftfield DnB stylings of the UK version" is just verbal wanking of the highest order. There ISN'T some ministry of style dubbing in somehow "classier" content into games for the UK, ok? Someone just dubbed a decent fucking techno tune onto that video. Jesus you people are a bunch of gullible fucks sometimes.

I was being deliberately wanky with my "leftfield DnB stylings", which is why I put the "if that's the right description" at the end of it. I thought it might be a dubbed on track but as people have noted no one was sure the soundtrack is the same on all versions. But anyway well done on insulting me for a throwaway comment I made almost a year ago, good to see you're on the ball :D

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Question: you know the trial missions? Do you need to play them as you go through? There seems to be a whole new set of them each level, so are you making it harder for yourself (in terms of missing out on points/upgrades) if you fail to play through ALL the trials before starting the next level each time?

Hope that makes sense, it's a while since I played it, but I remember that bugging me.

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Yes, you ought to play all the trial missions between each level. Not only do you get some points from each one you also get a big bonus for completing all five in a set. This is the only way of affording all the upgrades you will need to get to the end of the game.

Plus in some ways the trial missions are more fun than the main game. A bit like the void levels in Mario Sunshine. They are like purified versions of the gameplay without the encumbrance of the storyline.

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Frankly the game could've been just trial missions, but maybe they needed story missions to introduce level sections before they get added to the Trial Pile.

This would be a great handheld game, wouldn't it? Choose how many rooms you want to play and off you go. Alas I doubt we'll ever see a PSP version, but maybe in 5 years time when there's a handheld which can handle GC ports we'll get one.

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Frankly the game could've been just trial missions, but maybe they needed story missions to introduce level sections before they get added to the Trial Pile.

This would be a great handheld game, wouldn't it? Choose how many rooms you want to play and off you go. Alas I doubt we'll ever see a PSP version, but maybe in 5 years time when there's a handheld which can handle GC ports we'll get one.

.::: What's stopping them doing a DS-version? Considering how they've crammed Metroid Prime Hunters into it, this should easy.

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