The idea of Red Steel and its actual execution were a bit different. While playing the game, you know what the designers wanted or intended, but whether they were limited by the available hardware or the fact that they are the first "guinea pigs", they just didn't quite reach it. First off the story. What story? Exactly. Oh, you were looking for one? Okay...boy loves girl, girl has mob-boss dad, girl gets kidnapped by dad's rivals, boy suddenly learns weapon skills, boy saves girl. There, that'll do. The graphics are actually quite pretty, using stylized graphic-novel style cutscenes (think "Max Payne"). Environments are destructible, such as shooting a fuel drum to blow up a nest of enemies. Weapon selection is standard, meaning pistol-shotgun-machine gun fare (not a complaint, but what other guns are there really?). There are different types of each weapon though. Controls are a little hard to manage. It's a bit hard to aim when moving, but it may just take some getting used to (it ain't dual analogs!) Swordfighting almost becomes a samurai version of rock-scissors-paper. You have to guess if your opponent is going for the quick or hard strike which means you have to either parry or dodge: the wrong one choice will get you. I find it funny that thug "gangsta" bring a bat to a gun fight and then fight honorably. Speaking of which, why can't I just pull out my gun and shoot instead of the sudden shift to sword mode? The focus system for multiple attacks is a bit hard to use and you may wind up not using it all. Although the controls are not 1-to-1 with your movements (think Wii Sports baseball), it does its job (you can turn your pistol sideways if you want). Multi-player. One word: Goldeneye. Yeah, but that was 10 years ago... Overall, not bad for a launch title.
Red Steel is the flagship shooter for the Wii (like it or not) and despite the game being "built from the ground up for the Wii" Red Steel feels rushed, and much like a port of a great pc shooter that the Wii really shouldn't be able to handle. Red Steel is a mixed bag. On one hand you have innovative controls which make for some new, fresh game play. On the other hand you have shoddy production values, a mediocre game engine, and the feeling that this game was made from a b-list movie. Multiplayer was halfway decent, but with such a limited number of options, it was more disappointing. Though if you can manage to get 4 people together to play Red Steel on a huge tv, it's still quite an experience. All in all, I was expecting a lot more from this title. If you're into shooters and have 3 friends to play with, you might want to pick this one up. Otherwise, it's a rental, for sure. 6.