50 Cent: Bulletproof is a no-holds barred action game from Vivendi Universal Games. Any game featuring one of the world's most famous recording artists is bound to get a lot of attention, so we spoke to Andre Emerson, the game's Executive Producer, to get an idea why the game should be on our radar.
Pro-G: Firstly, could you tell our readers a bit about yourself and what your role is on the development of the game?
Emerson: My name is Andre Emerson, I'm the Executive Producer on the game. My job is to pull all of the elements of the production together and make sure we create an incredible experience.
Pro-G: How did the game come about? Did you have the basic game idea and then search for a star to fill the lead role?
Emerson: The idea for a 50 Cent game came from Jimmy Iovine (Interscope) and 50 himself. Once we were chosen as the publisher, we went straight to work collaborating with 50 on what type of experience the game should be. Working with 50 has been incredible. He's involved with the look, mechanics, music, story, everything.
Pro-G: Terry Winter has written the screenplay for the game. With his involvement in 50's biopic, did that make him the ideal guy for the job?
Emerson: Terry is amazing. He's one of those people that are just fun to be around. The story that he's put together for this game is simply genius. It's a feature-length, modern-classic crime epic with a screenplay that came in at over 100 pages.
Pro-G: Can you explain a little about the game's story. Why does 50 become involved with some of the biggest crime families in New York?
Emerson: The game opens with some suspicious events that lead to 50 being shot 9 times and surviving. The player will be introduced to the story and game mechanics while playing through this flashback. Once recovered, what would appear to be a classic revenge tales descends into some pretty dark and seedy sh*t.
Pro-G: The trailer for the game is pretty violent. Will the game play similarly to games like Dead to Rights, a series known for its brutal action?
Emerson: I designed and directed Dead to Rights (1) for Namco, so I'm very familiar with the genre. 50 Cent: Bulletproof enters new territory by taking brutal action and fusing it with incredible music, videos and an unparalleled cast in Eminem, Dr. Dre, Lloyd Banks, Young Buck, Tony Yayo and more.
Pro-G: The trailer depicts 50 as an action hero. Why is he so dangerous in the game? Surely he is just another man?
Emerson: 50 is larger than life. He succeeds in everything he does and the game is no different. This is not to say the game is without challenge. We've designed a number of different offensive and defensive game tactics that will challenge everyone from casual players to the most hardcore shooter fans.
Pro-G: While 50 Cent is the star, we understand that G-Unit will appear in the game. Do they act as 50's support team and do you have any control over them at any point?
Emerson: G-Unit (Banks, Buck and Yayo) have key roles in the game.
Banks deals with the locks, Yayo handles the explosives and Buck is our weapons expert. Throughout the seamless story & gameplay integration, their skills play integral parts in the experience. We've captured incredible likeness and voice over from the entire unit, so expect authenticity from their involvement as well.
Pro-G: Does the game put you into a free-roaming, living city ala GTA or is the game more a succession of missions?
Emerson: We decided early on to create a strong narrative for the game, much like a crime film. To best bring Terry's crime-classic to life, we needed to carefully manage the pacing. As a result, our creativity comes in the form of diverse play mechanics and how to deal with every circumstance.
Pro-G: How involved in the game's development has 50 Cent been? Does his music play a big part in the game?
Emerson: 50's all over the game: the story, game mechanics, graphics, tone, voice over. You name it. The game has an incredible collection of his past, present and new exclusive music and freestyles. While the game doesn't reflect his music career narratively, there is a very cool mix lab feature that allows the player to mix new freestyles with exclusive beats from Sha Money XL. In addition, the game has an amazing exclusive score from Sha. People are going love this.
Pro-G: With the game due for Xbox, PlayStation 2 and PSP, how will each version be tailored towards its system?
Emerson: PS2 and Xbox are 3rd-person action shooters while the PSP version is more of a classic, top-down Gauntlet-style game that allows up to 4 players to play as G-Unit via Ad-hoc. All versions are built around complimentary game mechanics, Terry's story and amazing music and videos.
Pro-G: Finally, why should people be more excited about Bulletproof than any other third-person shooter due this winter?
Emerson: 50 Cent: Bulletproof is the ultimate fusion of entertainment. Nowhere else can you get an amazing third-person action shooter, a modern-noir crime classic from Emmy-Award winning, Soprano's scribe, Terry Winter, a cast that includes Eminem, Dr. Dre and G-Unit as well as the largest collection of 50 & G-Unit music and videos. This is entertainment redefined.
Pro-G: Thanks for your time.
50 Cent: Bulletproof is due later this year from Vivendi Universal Games for the PlayStation 2, Xbox and PSP.