Time Crisis 4
Light-gun games still give me some nostalgic feelings. They remind of dark arcades, old Nintendo consoles and ducks. Namco, however, wants to keep the genre relevant and therefore released Time Crisis 4 for the Playstation3. They too don’t really know what to do with this archaeic type of games, though, and this is made clear with their futile attempts to bring some innovation.
The plastic gun looks more complicated than you would expect. The bright orange color shows its arcade-history but with two thumbsticks and six buttons just pulling the trigger no longer seems to suffice in Time Crisis 4. The accompanying infrared sensor needs, a bit like with the Wii, be put near your TV which in my case resulted in a cupboard that’s even more than ever filled with all sorts of junk and you realise that you’ll have to make sacrifices to play this game.
The story of TC4 is a lot less complex, to say the least. You need to get rid of a terrorist organisation that has killer-insects and you do that by shooting a lot. In Arcade Mode you get what you expect: an on-rails shooter where you have to give the enemies that crawl out of plenty of corners and rooms a nice round bullethole. Your arsenal consists out of a gun, a machine gun, a grenade launcher and a shotgun. By pushing a button you can take cover but you’ll have to make pace as there’s still a clock urging you to act fast.
So, little surprises for people who have played this type of games already before. Also the lifespan is extremely limited for those that are good at this, but the variation in levels and situations is big enough to make the experience barely enjoyable.
Not so good is the attempt with the Mission Mode to combine some FPS levels with the typical arcade experience. The controls are very far-fetched; just like in all first-person shooters you have to walk and look around with both thumbsticks, while aiming still is done through the GunCon3. Handy is something else! On top of that the FPS levels are too long, slow and boring and never manage to get to the heels of an average “normal” shooter. The same can be said of the graphics that at no time come close to what we can expect from the PS3. Also on that turf this is all but what we can call a next-gen interpretation of the lightgun game.
Namco misses the ball with this game. The GunCon3 is hardly an exciting controller, the Arcade mode never managed to innovate and the attempt to give some more appeal with FPS levels fails miserably. We’ll have to wait for another title to proove that this type of games still has a right of existence and then the question remains who wants to set up an installation like with the Wii when you can get to work with the Wii itself. Only for the fans.