Vic B’Stard’s week in review: The Gunstringer, El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron and Gears of War 3

Vic B'Stard
What a week!

I was intending to spend the week playing the most excellent Dead Island (which I’ve now tuned to perfection on my PC, honing it into the perfect zombie apocalypse simulator). After that I wanted to get on with Deus Ex: Human Revolution, which has been gathering dust for a week. The rest of the time was to be split between finishing off Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood on the Xbox 360 and a bit of The Witcher 2 on PC.

Sadly (or rather not), it wasn’t to be.

First a call from, could I review the PS3 Assassin’s Creed Revelations multiplayer beta? As I’d been playing it the previous week, no worries there. You can check out what I thought of the Assassin’s Creed Revelations multiplayer beta over at Game Console.  Then Game Culture NZ sent over a some codes for the Xbox Live Arcade RPG Crimson Alliance for a review. All good.

Things then started to get a bit busy.

The Gunstringer
No strings attached

First up a review copy of The Gunstringer arrived, Microsoft’s new Kinect shooter. Breaking away from the motion controlled party/sports gaming stuff usually tailored for the Kinect, Twisted Pixel Games, those of Splosion Man fame, have created what is possibly the first “proper” Kinect game that’s actually any good. With the aid of the Kinect, players can use their playground style pistol fingers to shoot bad guys whilst controlling a skull-faced puppet. This tale of vengeance is told though the medium of a puppetry play within the game, complete with live-action audience reactions. Bizarre? Yes. Worth a look? I think so. For just $60 you get The Gunstringer game and a code to download the full version of the fantastic Kinect-enabled Xbox Live Arcade Game, Fruit Ninja. You also get the opportunity to download a free live action add-on for The Gunstringer that plays like one of those old laserdisc arcade shooting games such as Mag Dog McCree. Watch out on Game Culture NZ for my full review very soon. The Gunstringer is available in New Zealand now on Kinect with Xbox 360.

Al Shaddai

I then happened upon a Xbox 360 review copy of El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron. From the imagination of Takeyasu Sawaki, one of the character designers from Capcom’s  Devil May Cry, El Shaddai retells the story of Enoch, the great-grandfather of the biblical Noah. Enoch is on a quest to bring the fallen angels back to Heaven and avert a great flood that God intends to inflict on the Earth to cleans it of the angel’s presence. The game tells the tale using a variety of different gaming genres and an amazing visual style the likes of which I’ve never seen before. The game has been out overseas for quite a while now and achieved considerable critical acclaim. My first impressions of the game will be up on Game Culture NZ very soon. El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron will be available from 23 September on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.

Gears of War 3
The final chapter

Next the unthinkable happened. With enough on my plate as it was, an advance copy of Gears of War 3 turned up on my doorstep. Now, whilst I liked the first, I wasn’t really that bothered with Gears of War 2– in fact, I’ve hardly touched it. Regardless of  that, I couldn’t resist taking a quick look at this latest addition to the Gears series. When I should really have been doing something else, I actually ended up hard at it with Marcus Fenix and his Deta Squad. I’m going to be filling everyone in on what I think about Gears of War 3 at a later date, but for now all I’ll say that is it the best looking game I’ve ever seen on the Xbox 360, and I’ve seen quite a few. Gears of War 3 is out in New Zealand exclusively for  Xbox 360 on  20 September. Fans of the game should check out this replica Retro Lancer rifle from Gears of War 3 that will be available in New Zealand around the same time as the game.


B’stard out.