Matrix Games: The Path of Neo

Developed by: Shiny Entertainment
Published by: Atari and WB Interactive
Released: November 8, 2005 in North America

The Matrix: Path of Neo is the second video game developed by Shiny Entertainment based on the Matrix series. Players control the character Neo, participating in scenes from the films.

In Shiny Entertainment's first licensed Matrix game, Enter The Matrix, only supporting characters were playable. It did not feature the series' main protagonist Neo, and due to its nature as an extension of the films' storyline, had few recreations of scenes in the film trilogy. David Perry, president of Shiny Entertainment Inc., has stated that Path of Neo is "basically the game the gamers wanted first time around... The Neo Game!"

Spoiler warning: Plot and ending details follow!

A total of fifty levels allow the player to participate in many of the major action scenes from the films. Most of these sequences, picked by the movie directors themselves, are taken from the first film in the series.

At the start of the game, the player is hacker Thomas Anderson, and does not possess any of the powers that the character will later discover as Neo. As the game continues, players learn new skills and techniques, equipping Neo for the final showdown with Agent Smith. These additional skills may be learned both in training levels and in the main game. Many of these skills are used by Neo in the trilogy, including the bullet dodge, bullet stop, and flight. A number of weapons are available in the game, consisting of both melee weapons (including various types of swords, staffs, and escrimas) and firearms (assault rifle, submachine gun, pistol etc).

The game also allows the player to meet many of the characters in the films, including Trinity, Morpheus and the Merovingian, amongst others.

A lot of film footage is included in the game, and is shown to the player at certain milestones. This footage is not only clips from the original Matrix trilogy, but also from other sources, including the Animatrix and the previous Matrix game, Enter the Matrix.

The game also features a brand new ending, because the Wachowski brothers felt the ending of The Matrix Revolutions would be a "lame" ending for a video game. Rather than an alternate ending to the Matrix storyline, the game's ending is more of a humorous non-sequitur similar to those found in Shiny's previous games. The ending features a plain white background with 2 chairs. Blue and a pink old-Atari-style sprites walk onto the screen and sit in the chairs. They speak to the player with the Wachoski Brothers' voices in an unscripted performance about altering the ending by doing some endless button mashing against a giant sculpture of Smith made from vehicles and chunks of buildings. After the last battle, the Kid yells out to Zion that the war is over (same footage as from M3). The ending features "We Are the Champions" by Queen, which is unusual for a Matrix game.

Some Matrix fans were disappointed by this ending since it was so inconsistent with the style of the three movies. That is the whole point! These players need to realize the Wachowskis were trying to be as unartistic as possible and give players what they really want: a big huge boss at the end of the game. The more obnoxiously incompatible the movies are with the ending of this video game, the better! The ending is a parody of big boss fighting games.

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