Date: 07-26-2011 18:18
Author: Mason King

PDC profile: Mason

I have always enjoyed the historical era of the wild west as it is portrayed in video games, with games such as Gunfighter on the original PlayStation, and the recently very enjoyable, Red Dead Redemption. Let's find out if Fast Draw succeeds in taking the player back to the old west back with this light gun genre game.

Although the game has only just been released onto the PS3, Fast Draw is actually a HD remaster of an arcade game of the same name dating back to the early 90ís. I say HD remaster, but the reality is that nothing has really changed from the original apart from the new HD textures for the menus. This is due to the game being a Ďlive-actioní game, which means youíre actually interacting with a movie, and it is a very dated one at that.

Fast Draw gets the player wielding a PlayStation Move controller in place of a light gun to perform quick draws with various western characters. If you are not brushed up with western lingo, a quick draw is literally a showdown between 2 people, where the first to unholster their gun and shoot the other wins the duel. The game pits you against many characters from the west, making it your job to take them down one by one. Before playing I thought the Move would be the perfect controller to replicate a light gun with itís 1:1 precision, theoretically giving the ability to make shots quickly and effectively. However, to my disappointment this wasnít the case in Fast Draw, since pulling the move controller up from the holstered position to the shooting position causes calibration issues, mainly with the cross-hairs flying all over the place. The calibration issues break the game early on due to itís fast paced nature, where your opponents can take you down before you get a chance to shoot accurately, and is especially annoying on smaller targets. For this reason the game gets very tiring, and I ended up trying to cheat by making very small movements, which totally destroyed the pace and purpose of the game.

For one, as I mentioned the video footage that you interact with is dated, since it was originally recorded over 15 years ago. All the footage is at VHS-quality, recorded with cheesy actors, which makes the whole game rather amusing at first, but annoying after a short while. The footage was also recorded in a format for arcade machines, so the screen will look very small and odd on many wide-screen displays, with over half of the screen being taken up with HUDís rather than the game itself. This also makes itís a pain for the targeting once again, with targeting having to be done in a much smaller space.

The Added Features
Moving away from the core game though, the developers did make a nice attempt to add some extra content to make the game more worthwhile, in the form of trophies and PlayStation Home awards. The Home rewards are nice, since a player can earn themselves cowboy costumes, a replica arcade machine of the game for your personal space, and even tumbleweed. This gave me the only incentive to actually play the game, and made me wonder why this wasnít just a Home mini-game from the start. The Home rewards are unlocked by earning certain trophies, which are easy enough if you endure the game long enough. Some other trophies are slightly more difficult however, such as the one where you need to shoot someone within 0.3 seconds, which is both shorter than my reaction time, and damn near impossible.

The Verdict
Fast Draw Showdown felt like an out-of-date game with broken controls, and made the whole experience rather unpleasant. If you do want to experience some good light gun gaming, I'd recommended looking at something like The Shoot instead. If you wanted a western experience, i would suggest looking into the Gunfighter series on the older PlayStations. But the most important thing to take away here, is to stay well clear from this game.

Fast Draw Showdown is a Live-Action arcade game that was first released in 1994, and has recently been ported over to the PSN by Digital Leisure. The game will set you back $9.99. I played the game for 2 hours before writing this review.

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