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It is unusual that the first game to be announced for a Nintendo console isn’t made by Nintendo but this was the case with Ubisoft’s Wii exclusive Red Steel, which doesn’t seem like the normal type of game for a Nintendo console either. The basic plot of the game is that you are a young anonymous American engaged to a Japanese American called Miyu. Early on in the game she is kidnapped at the restaraunt where you were supposed to meet her father, you actually eventually turns out to be a yakuza boss who is in the possession of an important katana. This is stolen from him by a young yakuza member who kills Miyu’s father trying to do so. You then need to infiltrate the yakuza underground and avenge the death using the legendary sword, which I presume is called Red Steel, were the game gets its name from.

From the screenshots you can see that even though Nintendo always seem to say that graphics are important in a game, the Wii will still be capable of excellent graphics. The textures look great and a lot better than even the best GameCube titles, the same applies to the lighting effects in the game giving it an added sense of realism. The characters in the game also look good, but at the minute they look as though they need to be worked on a little more before the final game is released. However Ubisoft has announced that the game won’t feature any blood, as they are going to focus on the gameplay and story rather than adding blood and guts.

As it is one of the first titles to be announced for the Wii, everyone is interested in how it utilises the WiiMote. In the game both the WiiMote and the nunchucka add on are used, similarly to the way a mouse and a keyboard are used. You move around in the game with the nunchucka add on, and the aiming and pointing will be done using the WiiMote. This will hopefully allow the gunfights to be more accurate and faster. It has been announced that using the WiiMote you’ll be able to control a katana and a gun. With the gun you’ll be able to tilt it sideways by doing the same with the controller. You can reload by pulling the controller back. But what I’m more excited about is the swordplay in this game, which looks to be really exciting. You will be able to control the movement of the sword by swinging around the WiiMote to block their attacks and also use it to attack them yourself. This might take some getting used to at first but once you get the hang of it you’ll be sword fighting in no time. You can also control grenades using the WiiMote which gives you greater flexibility than more FPS games as you can either throw them underarm or overarm when necessary.

The artificial intelligence in the game is supposed to be excellent, according to Ubisoft it is on par with F.E.A.R. Both the non player characters and your aggressors will be intelligent and aggressive. When attackeed they may often be able to suprise you by instead of running round an obstacle jumping over it.

Red Steel looks as though it may well set the standard for all Wii first person shooters in the future especially with the added benefits of swordplay. And even though it isn’t even a Nintendo game it could be the killer app for the launch of the Wii, if it wasn’t competing against Zelda. All Ubisoft need to do now it is clean up a few of the minor problems with the game, which they should be able to do easily within the coming months before the launch of the Wii.

Anticipation Rating: ★★★★★