• Publisher: Ubisoft
  • Release Date: Nov 19, 2006

Mixed or average reviews - based on 54 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 54
  2. Negative: 5 out of 54
  1. 50
    Don't be fooled into thinking Red Steel reinvents the FPS. It's nothing more than a ho-hum shooter with a creative but flawed gimmick stapled on.
  2. Sadly, positives such as the great audio are counterbalanced and often outweighed by missed opportunities and poorly executed gameplay mechanics. This leaves a game with a great concept and a few innovative ideas that sadly leaves a bitter taste in the mouth.
  3. A huge disappointment. The general concept is decent, but the game never evolves past that. The controls are frustrating, and the aesthetic / story of the game is such a yawn fest that only those with tremendous patience will be able to persevere for more than ten minutes at a time.
  4. This one simply has almost no replay value and its action isn't as refined as I expected it to be.
  5. The visual swagger of Red Steel is that of a been there, done that affair.
  6. You won't confuse a Red Steel with "Gears of War" or "Resistance: Fall of Man," but it’s clear that the Wii has some power in its corner.
  7. It's a superb shooter with a great plot, innovative gameplay and some really brilliant moments that will surprise even the most seasoned of gamer. It's a decent length too, with a good 15 hours of play in the main mode. But some control issues and patchy inconsistencies (mainly in the physics and level design) pull it short of earning that juicy [90] score.
  8. It is a fun and skilled gamer experience that requires some learning and patience. You will enjoy Red Steel the first time around, but I don’t see any space for replayability value.
  9. The main selling feature of this game, the control, has some really great ideas, however this time around they were not fully realized and the promises of great wii-mote control just never fully panned out.
  10. 50
    Horrible graphics - even by Gamecube standards - and a lousy presentation make this game something you'll be ashamed to show your friends.
  11. It's a decent FPS, with great (for the system) graphics and audio, and makes for a decently enjoyable run, although it's only worth making the run once. Rent it first.
  12. It's easy to over-rate launch titles thanks to the shock of the new, doubly so when the control scheme is as interesting as this one, but at its heart Red Steel is just another lever-pulling trawl through big rooms and S-shaped corridors. [Christmas 2006, p.77]
  13. Once you strip away the nifty new controls, you're left with a flawed shooter that does nothing I haven't seen a million times. [Jan. 2007, p.62]
  14. There are still some minor control issues, and the game is still incredibly inconsistent in terms of visual acuity, but in spite of this Red Steel is still an unquestionably fun game to play.
  15. It has inspired moments and a substantial single-player venture, but the whole thing is undermined by the terrible presentation and the all-permeating impression that Red Steel isn't quite finished, from the story-board-sketch cut-scenes to the jerky animation and weird, basic, placeholder textures.
  16. Red Steel is one of the most interesting and ambitious launch titles for the Wii, and even though it doesn't provide a flawless experience, it's still fun.
  17. 60
    The enemies almost seem to know you’re at a disadvantage, control-wise. They’re far from the brightest opponents, often standing around seemingly bored when they have clear shots at you. This does keep things from becoming frustrating, but in this era of challenging AI in games like "FarCry" and "Gears of War," Red Steel can sometimes feel like a throwback.
  18. Most of Red Steel’s faults lie with the game’s presentation. Enemies shout annoying obscenities in your direction during every firefight, the cheesy score is bad enough to incite chuckles, and the jaggy graphics look worse than many Xbox and PlayStation 2 games.
  19. A time machine that only goes backwards to the age when a glut of no-name shooters clogged the shelves.
  20. The final big problem for Red Steel is its learning curve. You have to use the Wiimote + Nunchuk together in motion and in button pressing. This can lead most seasoned gamers to be thrown off for a good hour before picking things up. And with a short length of only 9ish hours, it’s a learning curve I’m not sure many will be willing to go for.
  21. Although it acts as a wonderful selling point for anyone considering developing an FPS for the Wii, Red Steel is too much of an unsatisfying tease to succeed as much else.
  22. 65
    It's buggy and unevenly presented, which spoils what fun there is to be had. However, it did give me a taste of how FPS games can and will change on the Wii, and I'm looking forward to seeing how the genre will play out in the future.
  23. Red Steel is a good first try for Ubisoft in the arena of Wii shooting games, and the new, unique experience of actually being physically involved with the in-game action may be all that is needed to overcome some of the weaker aspects of the title for some gamers.
  24. Some clever ideas and enjoyable moments, inside an average (but solid enough) shooter. [Christmas 2006, p.78]
  25. For every moment of satisfaction, there's an equal moment of frustration to match it. It's probably just as well for Ubisoft that the novelty of Nintendo's Wii Remote will carry Red Steel as a launch title. [Christmas 2006, p.110]
  26. What can’t be overlooked though is the poor dialogue and voice acting, which ranges from stereotypical to absurd.
  27. Red Steel introduces a promising control scheme both for shooting thugs and for slashing them with samurai swords, but wraps it in a buggy, thoroughly unimpressive game.
  28. 40
    It's a broken, buggy game, and if the statement about learning curves were true, it would still take far too long to gain wings before the average gamer would grow disenfranchised. The game feels completely rushed to retail in time for the launch.
  29. An average run-and-gunner that wouldn’t deserve a second look if it weren’t for its use of Wii’s unique controls. Pacing is horrible, with levels constantly being interrupted by overblown dialogue.
  30. Once the final credits roll and only the memories of your experiences remain, underneath the oddly coloured skin of different environments, controls, and concepts, Red Steel is very much a first person shooter like all those other 'normal' first person shooters.
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 111 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 42 out of 63
  2. Negative: 14 out of 63
  1. Sep 18, 2011
    I didn't enjoy this game at all. The controls are totally not intuitive and don't feel natural for how a samurai would move. The gun is nearly impossible to aim. When get the game and hate it so much that I can't even bare to play it again after the first time, that can't even be considered a game, rather an expensive demo. Full Review »
  2. Aug 15, 2010
    Red steel is a hard game for me to review because I liked the game overall, but many of the game's glitches/problems could have been easily fixed. The hook of the game is that it is part shooter part sword fighter, but sadly the sword slinging is clunky and most of the time not much fun. The gun motion controls are also a bit of a problem, while most of the time they work fine some of the time they will freak out and you will start spiraling in a circle for about a second, but keep in mind this is very rare problem (it will happen once or twice the entire game.)The graphics of red steel are not award worthy or great because they are bland, gray, and overall terrible even for a wii game, but there are some decent explosions. Too add to this seemingly never-ending list of problems the story seems to be taken out of a d movie, and while some will laugh at this story other will just skip it altogether. Possibly the largest problem with this game is that it is only 5 hours long with no on line, but since the game now is the price of a wiiware game I guess that isn't a huge problem. Even though all these problems are true and in the game I am giving it a 6 because even though the game has its faults is also has many fun mini games, a variety of weapons, good local multi-player, an original idea, and most of the time fun fast paced shooting action. Now to recap I do not recommend this game to everyone, but to those who can accept its faults should definitely buy the game used or rent it. Full Review »
  3. DavidPerkins
    Dec 29, 2006
    The lower scores given out by reviewers smacks of nothing more than a review they were forced to rush to cover the Wii launch.

    The control
    system is different, but it's nothing like broken, and those who claim otherwise are simply wrong. The game is very on-rails, but that doesn't damage the otherwise satisfying gun and sword play offered here.

    It's not going to drop any jaws, but this is about as solid a launch FPS title the Wii could have hoped for. There's enough original ideas to call it well above average, and the control system is a real breath of fresh air.

    Complaints against the games technical side also seem unfair. Red Steel would be considered an extremely competent and visually impressive Cube title, and given that Ubisoft were working on GC development kits for most of Red Steel's development, they have done a cracking job.

    Most notable for me though, is the variety of locations and set pieces, within the games - admittedly straight forward - story, which makes the whole thing feel like an expansive adventure.

    Red Steel may not be a system seller, but if you've got a Wii and are looking for some solid FPS action, this is absolutely indispensable.
    Full Review »