Live gameplay footage of The House of the Dead: Overkill using my “CTA Digital Sniper Rifle Gun for Wii” with calibrated aim. I checked a “popular” internet video site to sample other players using the accessory, and came back underwhelmed. I didn’t find any legitimate gameplay videos. Gamers, industry, you all suck. No wonder most rail shooters and accessories are designed for “dumb” customers – there’s no motivation/demand to advance the software or hardware, just an endless cycle of publishers assuming everyone is lazy while gamers REALLY ARE too lazy to aim a casual non-gun and instead complain about 12-digit codes. Even Sony’s Move is a broken, lag-plagued alternative with even dumber-looking accessories exclusively designed for gullible customers (has it been used in “regular” games yet?), and they’re willing to charge more for all of it.
Gameplay from “Ghost Squad” and “HotD 2/3”. See Wii Sniper Rifle Gameplay
I’ll save my serious “review” of the accessory for later, but I will say it’s the best Wii rifle I’ve tried so far – the printed crosshairs on the fake scope do a good job of sighting targets, and the main trigger works great like some of the better handgun shells (the awesome part is it’s a RIFLE); on the downside, the main grip SUCKS (it’s not really shaped for a grip), but the trigger is still reachable with some improvisation (oh crap, I started reviewing it). Actually, these videos were made to address the shortcomings of Overkill’s gunplay. Please excuse the audio quality: it was late at night and I didn’t have the game volume up very high and my camcorder was literally inches away from my hands so the clackity noise of the trigger seems way louder than it really is.
Overkill has a few issues that adversely affect your aim:
1) The cursor is significantly lagged – Headstrong Games probably meant well when they provided a cursor with smooth movement and appearance, but the added delay hurts players’ ability to accurately change targets quickly. When the cursor’s active, it’s closer to “dragging” than “pointing”. When the cursor’s disabled, I have to WAIT for it, hoping it arrives when/where I expect it, every single shot. As I’m playing, I’m constantly leading my targets and considering the delay, predicting where my shots are rather than simple visual line-of-sight identification. I get results, but it’s WAY more work than it should be (assuming the other issues don’t mess me up). Targeting things quickly can lead to even greater disaster. A cursor sensitivity option should’ve been included, like The Conduit uses. Or, it should’ve worked just like Ghost Squad and HotD 2/3 in the first place; there isn’t an excuse why we’re given inferior functionality.
2) The calibration procedure is erroneous – somehow, following the calibration directions always results in an off-center cursor. I end up guessing where I shoot the corners to get decent results, which can take several (too many) tries. The calibration also seems easily lost if I move a little bit from my original center position. Again, Ghost Squad and HotD 2/3 don’t have these problems.
3) The frame rate SUCKS – it’s not only low, it’s often inconsistent. The poor framerate affects all apparent movement (enemies, cursor position), so any missing/stuttering frames/animations interferes with my ability to line up the cursor over whatever it is I THINK I’m seeing (again, on top of the other issues I’m already fighting with). Even the stuttering caused by data streaming/loading leaves a poor impression. A solid frame rate should’ve been secured above all; optimize or scale back whatever’s necessary to achieve it. A terrible framerate in a “simple” project like a “light gun game” is a tragedy.
If Headstrong does get another opportunity to bring this series to Wii, these issues had better be eliminated (was this game a rush job?). I gave this game a chance (based on the previous Sega arcade ports), but there’s no point in buying another light gun style game that “almost works” like Overkill does. Ghost Squad and HotD 2/3 are great, but they’re old, and the RE Chronicles games don’t even have calibration (COMPLETELY MISSED OPPORTUNITIES), so with no more proper target practice simulators coming to Wii, am I just out of luck?
Wii Sniper Rifle Video – Gameplay Montage