Call of Juarez: This One Doesn't Suck.
Call of Juarez: Gunslinger is one of those games that can be lost in the dust in mere weeks if you don't look for it. Gunslinger comes from a series that never garnered much regard even with their better releases let alone the "Cartel". On top of that Gunslinger hits at the $15 release price, just more possible evidence you could just look this one over. Well let me tell you, you shouldn't let this one go to the forgotten pile.
The game play is similar to that of Bound in Blood, an earlier release under the Call of Juarez franchise. Old west guns blazing in a cloud of smoke and misting blood. This game relies heavily on the shooting and thankfully the shooting feels extremely satisfying. Getting to dual wield six shooters, dumping bullets into goons just feels right. Not to mention you can use a trusty 'ole double barrel shotgun, rifle or various other pistols. Techland not only nailed the guns but the animations, blood splatter, aiming and sense of urgency in the mayhem all add to the dynamic. Small things like getting to hammer the X button to reload faster in a frantic shoot out is great. Or being able to pick up various shooting buffs/skills as you level your character and upgrade your guns to get combos or skillfully pulled off head shots.
The story itself or potentially the way it is told is also fascinating. Not only do you play your way through the story line but it's told as a story and narrated as you play it... and well, with little audible down time. It truly is a great way to play a game and could be used quite a bit more often for any drawn out shooting sequences. We all know there's enough games with that, right? Through the entire length of the game I was impressed with the quality of the voice acting, story telling and timing. Techland has found a fantastic way to separate themselves from the FPS masses with this story telling. They may not be the first but it's rare to see and very effective. I can think of many AAA titles where huge plot holes could be magically filled with creative story telling over the action.
I was able to play this game on both the 360 and the PC. Depending on your crowd I have some good or bad news. Call of Juarez: Gunslinger looks way better on PC. Now I know most all games do but this one stood out more than the average difference, enough to nearly change the experience for me. The art is great as well, Techland does a good job painting the gritty old west and it can't hurt that the western themed games market isn't very competitive. Either way it's a bonus for the player when we get to see it.
The plain and simple truth is because they were able to use their existing engine they can charge a nice $15 at release. Gunslinger is a great value and easily worth your time and money. It may run a little short in play time being around the 4 hour mark for one play through but the price makes up for it. This thing is easily better than far too many $60 releases.