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TGS '07: Time Crisis 4 Hands-On

We grab the Guncon and start making the world a better place.


TOKYO--Time Crisis is one of those games that can sell itself. If you like Guncon games and shooting copious numbers of bad guys, you're probably going to buy the game regardless of what you read or see on TV. But just because you're going to buy it already doesn't mean you don't want to know more about it, right? Read on for our hands-on impressions of the first level on display at the TGS '07.

The game's prerendered intro was playing as we approached the kiosk. It was tough to figure out what was going on since everything was in Japanese, but the movie still conveyed all you need to know--some bad guys are up to no good, there are some giant buglike creatures on the loose, and it's up to you to make things right.

Fiddling around with the menus we noticed a split-screen option as well as some sort of minigames. The clock was ticking on our playtime though so we hopped into the game's first mission. Another cutscene played, seemingly reiterating what we had seen in the intro. Our character was a tough-looking character named Captain Rush. After the two high-ranking officials gave us the lowdown on what was happening, it was time for action.

The first level takes place on the docks of an unnamed California city. We rappelled onto the docks from a helicopter and got acclimated with the controls. In many ways the plastic gun that comes with the game looks similar to what you'd find in any shooting game, but this gun has a lot more than a trigger. An analog stick on the left side of the gun lets you move around while another stick just above the back of the handle lets you look around. Pushing in the left analog stick makes your character crouch and pushing in the right stick zooms in the sights a bit. There are two buttons on the front of the gun. One reloads the weapon and the button below it makes your character jump. There are also a few buttons on the back, one of which lets you select different weapons. Our impressive arsenal included a pistol, machine gun, shotgun, knife, and even a grenade launcher.

Acclimating to the controls was a piece of cake and we quickly made our way through the maze of boxes, crates, and shipping containers--at least until the bad guys showed up. Soon we found ourselves under fire from dudes jumping out from behind corners, crouching next to parked cars, and even atop the shipping containers. Running through the level was a recipe for disaster, but slowing down and carefully picking off enemies one by one worked great and was a lot of fun. After using the jump button to climb some crates that were conveniently stacked in a stairlike fashion, some helicopters flew overhead and dropped off some reinforcements. These new bad guys were a lot tougher and even carried blast shields. We made short work of them and were just starting to feel confident when a helicopter came swooping down raining bullets on our parade. Death soon followed and we passed the controller to the next person in line.

Time Crisis 4 isn't much to look at--at least the stage we played wasn't--but this is one of those games that doesn't need to be gorgeous to be entertaining. You can find out for yourselves when the game hits stores this winter.

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