E3 06: Red Steel: Hands-on

To aim accurately, you can hit the A button to zoom in on the target which slows down the tracking of the on-screen reticule, but also slows down the movement of your enemy making them a far easier target to hit.

The time when the action really flows is when there is cover that can be used. Hitting the Z button on the nunchaku controller makes your character duck behind available cover, sheltering you from incoming fire, and giving you time to rest your arm and plan your next shot.

The other positive from the shooting segments involves a time-freezing dynamic - similar to Dead Eye mode in Rockstar's Red Dead Revolver - which allows you to "paint" three shots on various targets. To activate this mode you must hold down the A button. Once the A button is released, and real time kicks in, your character will quickly release three shots at the predetermined targets. It's perfect for making an area safe once you've burst through a door.

The sword fighting section was far more satisfactory than the previous shooting bit, mainly as you can move the remote more freely. What was noticeable, though, was that the movement of the sword on-screen didn't always replicate the movement you made with the remote, which suggests there's a finite number of programmed moves which can be activated. Also, all of the attacks were slashes, as you aren't able to lunge or stab with the sword.

During this section the nunchaku once again controlled the movement, but as you automatically lock on to your opponent - once you're close enough - left and right made you circle around the target. To block you must use the motion sensors in the nunchaku controller by making a twisting motion as you would when using a doorknob. This brings up your sword to block and - if timed well enough - will parry an attack leaving your opponent temporarily defenseless.

Overall, it was an interesting - if unwieldy - experience and raises a few questions that we'll put to the developer in our meeting with them later this week.

May 10, 2006