Review by _Spin_Cycle_
"Give It A Chance: An extensive review"
Red Steel, Ubisoft, was hyped even before it's debut at E3 2K6. Everyone was expecting it to be the most revolutionary first-person shooter that ever was. Crystal-clear graphics, disposable environments, motion control, soft bodies, real time physics...you name it, Red Steel was boasting it.
Then on launch day, many people's jaws were to the floor as they played "the most revolutionary first-person shooter that ever was" on their own Nintendo Wii. They were flat out disappointed. You've probably heard any one of the following remarks concerning this game:
"This game has a HUGE learning curve!"
"What a disappointment. I thought it would be better."
"The graphics in this game are laughable!"
"There are bugs and glitches in every room!"
I read these comments too. But guess what? I bought it anyway. Wanna know why? Because reviews do not influence my ability or desire to have fun. I purchased it three weeks after launch, and boy am I glad I did.
Graphics - 8/10
I am not a big graphics-craver, if you will. I enjoy a game, even if it's graphics aren't so good. Red Steel's graphics did impress me, however. If you have the chance, check out the "Members Only Spa" in the level "Angel's Heaven." The water looks quite good, as do its surroundings. Bullets put nice, realistic holes into any and everything. 90% of the objects you encounter are breakable or able to be interacted with. While the cutscenes are done in a comic-book themed style, I find that the actual game play is impressive.
Controls - 9/10
The major issue. Many complained that Red Steel took too long to get used to. I picked the game up and was shooting baddies and blazing down obstacles within ten minutes of entering the disc into the Wii. My only complaint is that there is somewhat of a small lag time between when you move your remote and when the cursor on-screen moves. Nothing much.
Controls are simple yet intuitive: you use the Wii remote to point your weapon, face directions, fire your weapon, change your weapon, use your Katana, access your menus, and confirm/deny options. It is also noteworthy that if you tilt your Wii remote entirely to the left or right, while keeping it straight forward, the gun on-screen will tilt as well, making you feel even more of a badass as you sweep down lines of enemies with a hardcore machine gun. The nunchuck is used to walk, open doors, press switches, push over tables, jump, crouch, and is also used in Katana fights. The Remote - Nunchuck combo works wonderfully with Red Steel. Controls are fluid, just as long as you keep your Wii remote straight forward when walking. Ah, I won't get into that. You'll figure it out easily once you play it for the first time!
Sounds/Music - 8/10
I will categorize this into three sections: voice acting, in-game sounds, and in-game music.
The voice acting is somewhat weak, especially when it comes to the enemies. They all say the same slew of phrases, such as, "I'll get you!" or "Killer!" before trying to blow you away. Even more specific, Ubisoft didn't bother to change the voices for people of different races. The enemies use the same voices in every location your in, be it America or Tokyo. This is very minute, and I don't want to elaborate further, as I don't mean to offend anyone. In general, the voice acting was a bit cheesy. Let's move on...
The game's sounds are wonderful. Explosions sound real, doors open and close, footsteps sound real, and the shattering of glass sounds like your bedroom window just busted. Firing rounds out of your gun makes you really feel like you handling a gun for several reasons. The most important of these reasons is that when you reload (swinging your nunchuck to the left or right), the reloading sound (Ker-chick!) takes place both in the TV's speakers and in the Wii remote's speakers, making it feel like you have just reloaded a weapon. Enough said.
The music is surprisingly great. I normally don't expect great soundtracks from First-Person Shooters, but this one hit the nail on the head. I, being a professional musician, appreciated the soundtrack of Red Steel very much, and do intend to purchase a copy of the Official Soundtrack, if it is released.
Gameplay - 8/10
The gameplay is simple. You navigate a map, shooting baddies, sword-fighting enemies, and solving various puzzles (unlocking doors, etc.) to complete your mission. There's plenty of cool things to find if you take the time to explore, however.
Now, on the down side, the game does indeed have glitches. None of these glitches make the game unplayable. In fact, I can't even name one of these glitches off the top of my head right now. The glitches happen, and then I say, "Okay..." and continue shooting some guy in the face.
Not much else to say here.
Replay - 9/10
I'll let you know that I own The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. I picked it up at launch. I enjoy taking my time with games, so I still haven't finished it. I was about to finish it, when I picked up Red Steel.
Even thought Twilight Princess is, honestly, a better game, Red Steel was the game I wanted to play more. I wanted to continue the storyline. I wanted to continue gaining new weapons, new sword techniques, and keep fighting. I eventually ended up beating both Zelda and Red Steel within days of each other, but I finished Red Steel first.
This game lasts a long time. It is a long game, plus, the multi-player features of the game are a blast to play.
The Final Word: 8/10
So, it's not the most perfect game in the world. Is there really a perfect game in existence? Arguably, no. Every game has its flaws. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time had flaws, as did Final Fantasy VII. I'm not comparing either of these games to Red Steel...I am simply explaining that you cannot base an entire opinion on a game based on it's "supposed" flaws until you have played it yourself, felt the control scheme, blasted someone full of lead, and beaten someone with your Katana in Red Steel.
Give Red Steel a chance. Ubisoft did the best job they could do with the game, considering the complexity of the game that they were trying to produce right at launch! Red Steel is worth your time, trust me.
Rent it, Buy it, it's your decision. I don't care.
Just play it.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 01/05/07
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