Call of Juarez - hands-on

But it’s the way Call of Juarez spices up gameplay with a wild assortment of weapons and gameplay modes that made our time with Reverend Ray a real blast. The former man of the cloth can whip out his Bible as a weapon. Hit the fire trigger, and he’ll begin reading verses which momentarily stuns surrounding bad guys. It’s one of the most creative weapons we’ve seen in a first-person shooter, and we’re all for it.

The Concentration mode works well for clearing rooms full of thugs. It’s basically a Matrix-like bullet time power that lets you plug bad guys left and right. In one area, we kicked down a door, activated the concentration mode, and took out about four villains with our two pistols.

On the other hand, the Quick shot mode works better for dropping lone enemies. When activated, your character fires off a barrage of bullets as he quickly hammers his pistol.

At certain points in the story, you’ll also encounter pistol duels via the game’s Quick draw mode. It’s a throwback to those tense moments in Western films where gun slingers stare each other down before drawing their pistols. You’ll need to flick the right thumbstick down and then up to mimic the act of drawing your weapon. Flick it fast and your targeting reticule will show up quicker, but will control more wildly. Flick it slower and you’ll be late on the draw but have a significantly steadier bead on your opponent.

All in all, we were impressed with the way Call of Juarez’ various shooting modes added flair to the stale gameplay tropes of the first-person shooter genre in general. Without them, the game would probably feel too derivative with a slightly different floating gun-holding hand in the foreground.


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