Time Crisis 4 Hands-On

We grabbed the brand-new Guncon 3 and started blasting away in Namco Bandai's upcoming PlayStation 3 port of the arcade shooter.

Sadly, you don't see a lot of arcade-style light-gun games these days, but Namco Bandai is nobly keeping that tradition alive both in the arcades and, soon, at home with an upcoming PlayStation 3 version of Time Crisis 4. This is the fourth entry in one of the longest-running light-gun series we can think of, a series that pioneered a unique cover mechanic whereby you could actually avoid incoming shots from enemies rather than just taking them in the face. The fourth game in the franchise won't quite shake up the formula to such an extent, but the developer has nevertheless added some interesting new gameplay in the transition to the home platform.

The classic arcade gameplay is present, correct, and complemented by a number of new features.

The first thing we noticed about the Guncon 3--Namco Bandai's latest in its popular line of light-gun peripherals--was that an analog stick juts out from the side of the barrel. You'll use that stick to control your movement in the PS3 version's five first-person shooter-style levels. Wait, movement? FPS levels? Indeed, Time Crisis 4 will deviate from the series by giving you several opportunities to run around freely and shoot at the same time. These five levels will be interspersed throughout the game's arcade campaign mode, and while we didn't get to actually play or even see any of the new stages, we figure they'll add some nice variety in between the more traditional arcade elements.

And yes, aside from these new FPS levels, Time Crisis 4 will provide that same light-gun action you know and love from the arcade. We got to try the game's first two arcade levels, the first of which was set in an office building where we had to fight off a bunch of typical heavily armed thugs. Some had riot shields, some had rocket launchers, but they all went down after a few well-placed shots with the Guncon. The second level had us blasting our way through a cave, where we were assailed by legions of trilobyte-looking gross bugs called "terror bites" in addition to the gun-toting mercs.

The plastic pistol in your hand isn't just a pistol once you start playing.

The game's action is a little more complex than in past games. We had four weapons to work with in our first level, including a shotgun and machine gun in addition to our standard pistol, and we had to duck behind cover and pull the trigger to change up our weapons. At some points, you'll actually have to defend more than one front at a time, such as when our ragtag band of fighters reached the joint between two hallways. We holed up behind some cover in the corner and had to fight off enemies coming at us down both passages. To control which way we were looking, we simply had to aim the Guncon offscreen in the direction we wanted to turn.

Time Crisis 4 looks like it's upholding the series' trademark gameplay with aplomb, though time will tell whether the new FPS levels will be a good fit for the otherwise guided action so common to the franchise. Namco Bandai is doing some work to tighten up the game's visuals on the PS3. It will run in 720p resolution, though we didn't see a lot of other obvious signs of improvement in the preview build we played. Still, we're glad to see light-gun games of this fashion still trickling out, in whatever form they take.

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Discussion

168 comments
Eclipse20l
Eclipse20l

will this gun work on a rear projection hdtv i hope..... since ps3 has hdmi inputs and big screen tvs are in more homes these days, i will be very dissapointed if it won't work....

PSLinux
PSLinux

they need a left handed version with that joystick sticking out the other side

jesus_knight
jesus_knight

ive played the arcade games and they are a lot of fun

s0njas0n
s0njas0n

and yet it looks like ever other shooter...

DouglasBuffone
DouglasBuffone

I actually played this game in the arcade, it is good, but I am not going to pay more than retail for it

-Krakapow-
-Krakapow-

i thnk the scrren shots are backwards because of the way arcade machines work. where the actual screen is flat in front facing up and what you aim it is a reflection of that screen opposite you. if that makes sense

CodyLoco
CodyLoco

Is the Guncon 3 bluetooth? Oh god please tell me it's BT I'm not running a wire to my ps3!!!

comthitnuong
comthitnuong

I loved the 3rd one in the arcades. I hope this one is better.

mulletman39
mulletman39

YEA...well can't wait! ...With This & House Of The Dead 4 I'll Be In Home Console Light Gun Heaven!!! =D

ryan-man
ryan-man

which idiot post the screenshots!

NinjaMunkey01
NinjaMunkey01

Is this only gonna come out on the PS3? man finally an exclusive that is good! I dont know about being able to move around though. seems to be messing around with the already perfect formula for a times crisis game.

Rikusaki
Rikusaki

lol yeah the screen shots are backwards

legandary_ACE
legandary_ACE

why are the screen shots backwards on this game?

IC3_MAST3R
IC3_MAST3R

This game is gonna be sweet I can't wait to play it.

FullSurface
FullSurface

this shouldn't be a cross over title, this game was on PS1,PS2,and PS3 this game is gonna rape 360 when it comes out.

nevershort
nevershort

The arcade game is fun... so I bet its gonna kick a$$ on PS3!! Guncons are fun...

grafkhun
grafkhun

sweet, this and ghost squad, light gun revival!

Simsyas
Simsyas

I can't believe they still didn't fix it.

sebtko
sebtko

make it a ps3 exclusive

konradak
konradak

Sweet, they should bring this to the 360 :)

darendt69
darendt69

NeverToBe5 where do they show the new guncon Ihave a video of it posted on my profile

casey7672
casey7672

Alright another great game for the PS3! I can't wait.

Billipop
Billipop

Time Crisis 4 is definitely one of the top reason for me to buy a PS3 because i've been a fan of every installment that has ever come out for the Playstation consoles exclusively as well as the arcade versions of course.It will never come to the XBOX 360,PC,and Nintendo Wii so stop whining about this,OK? The word exclusive means one console only.

Finly
Finly

That sounds awesome....

NeverToBe5
NeverToBe5

where do they show the new guncon

nevershort
nevershort

So are they coming out with a sixaxis light gun??? That'll be sick!!

Oliver
Oliver

Finally. A game to end this feeling of regret for having bought a PS3.

BRING ON THOSE LIGHT-GUN GAMES!!

finaleve
finaleve

toastedrebel>Unfortunately the gun controllers HAVE to be brightly colored. I think its a law or something so you won't be shot at. Can't wait, i love the time crisis series.

printice21
printice21

its amazing how with hd graphics and all the modern technical stuff they put into this game they still have the same corny sounding namco speaker and horrible character design the main characters look like they should be singing "im too sexy for this game, to sexy for this gun so sexy it hurts" other than that the game looks awesome and as long as i dont have to see the main character too much it looks like its definetly something that helps distinguish the ps3 library.

9mmSpliff
9mmSpliff

why is HUD backwards on the screenshots?

dgs1324
dgs1324

It should be excellent especially in the arcade

toastedrebel
toastedrebel

Is the gun going to be colored orange again? I HATE orange Guncons...

Crisis_Eye
Crisis_Eye

YEAH!!!!! TIME CRISIS 4!!!!!!!!!!!

termadoyle
termadoyle

looks good but guncon games are never worth the proce of admission IMO because you don't get to play many games in its lifespan.

kaven_rulz
kaven_rulz

hmmm...lookin forward to this,wats the new guncon look like?

Cheshie
Cheshie

Time Crisis!? Let's DO this!

sancezz
sancezz

I loved Time Crisis and Time Crisis 2...but 3 was kinda meh. I sense another average title coming...

gamer4life41691
gamer4life41691

I denfinately enjoyed Time Crisis 3 for it's cover mechanic, just don't know how that's going to translate to the PS3. Looking forward to it, though.

NoFearDJB
NoFearDJB

Quote: "For the GunCon 3, you place two markers on the left and right sides of your TV screen. A camera inside the muzzle of the gun detects the position of the markers, and thus you can use it regardless of your monitor [type]. There are six buttons on the device and two analog sticks. One of them is placed on a "sub-grip" that you hold with your left hand, and another is on the barrel of the gun."

blur35mm
blur35mm

The Wii gun accessory will rock with the Time Crisis series...just plug the nunchuck and the controller into the gun holster and voila, FPS gaming is at a whole new level...wait and see my friends. Long live Time Crisis 2!!!!

ringbling
ringbling

@LOGGER13 and carlandbecca Why would it matter if your tv is LCD? The gun itself will have the sensors to make the game work. That would be absolutely ridiculous that it wouldn't work on LCD tv's when more and more people are buying them. I think that carlandbecca is thinking of older versions of light guns where they might not have worked, but give me a break this is modern times we're talking.

LOGGER13
LOGGER13

@carlandbecca "Are they gonna have a way for this to work on LCD or plasma TV's?" Light gun games don't work on LCDs or plasmas? This is news to me ...

Guiseppe1
Guiseppe1

They should also make it for the Xbox 360.

KrazyKhallos
KrazyKhallos

FINALLY!!! THIS IS ANOTHER PS3 TITLE THATS GONNA MAKE SONY HUGE

blazemasta
blazemasta

yes... works with all types of tvs projectors or w/e.. read the ign artice its better... too lazy to link it tho lol anyways this game looks too sikkk... gonna buy my ps3 get this and the new socom cant waittt.... maybe the wiis got some competition