Twisted Pixel’s first Kinect game is almost upon us so we get off the couch to see what The Gunstringer is all about. The first thing you will notice is that the Splosion Man creators haven’t lost their love for crazy characters and unique game mechanics. You may have heard that The Gunstringer is a shooter and, while this is true, it’s a whole lot more. The game will start you out with a brief tutorial section detailing how the shooting works. Your right hand controls a cursor that you use to highlight up to six targets and flicking your right hand upward causes The Gunstringer to fire at the targeted enemies.
Sounds simple enough, doesn’t it? Think again, as you will be moving during most of the game. Movement is controlled with your left hand. Moving it side to side moves the Gunstringer and flicking it up makes him jump. He’ll run forward on his own. The game can get quite hectic when you’re trying to steer around obstacles with your left hand and highlight targets with your right. The first boss fight I encountered was with the Wavy Tube Man, (what a jerk) and you used your left hand to lean out of cover to shoot him up.
This sounds like it could make your arms very tired, very quickly. Luckily the game did a fantastic job of tracking my hands and, unlike most Kinect games, it didn’t lose my hands when I dropped them down for a rest. In fact, one of the loading screen tips told me to try playing while sitting if I was tired. I didn’t try this, but the tracking was so good that I don’t doubt it would work fine.
As I said earlier, The Gunstringer isn’t all about shooting. The next level had one section where I was doing some 2.5D platforming and after that, I was running down a hill dodging rolling boulders.
After this I was punching a bunch of people in their faces. This isn’t just a rail shooter, there are other things to do. I had a great time with The Gunstringer and I was laughing pretty much the whole time. Not only was it fun, it was funny and well presented. Look for The Gunstringer on September 13th.
See the expanded preview at The Controller Online.