E3 2014: Blue Estate Preview: 'a shot of Tarantino'

Screenshot - Blue Estate

 Blue Estate isn’t your typical first-person shooter, and that’s because it doesn’t want to be.

Viktor Kalvachev’s soon-to-be released on-rails shooter dodges the norm in favor of a territory only a handful of first-person shooter developers have dared to go: motion control without PlayStation Move or Kinect.

But similar to how it goes against its very own genre, Blue Estate argues the definition of motion control. You don’t wave your hands around like a buffoon in Blue Estate. And no, this game doesn’t try to double as a fitness title. Instead, you guide the PlayStation 4’s DualShock 4 controller around the screen to aim before you deliver the final, deadly blow.

“It’s like a shot of (Quentin) Tarantino and old fiction and Guy Ritchie with a little bit of ‘Get Shorty’,” Kalvachev told us. “It also adds old arcade games like Time Presses and House of the Dead told into a modern story where it’s told by a private detective who’s completely clueless and being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Procrastination. I mean, it doesn’t get any crazier basically.

“It’s a lot of fun. It’s jokes pretty much every minute. We try to keep you entertained and really make you feel like you got a new console this time.”

Blue Estate screenshot

Don’t twist Kalvachev’s words, though. Blue Estate won’t blow you away graphically. It isn’t “next-gen” in that way. However, the mechanic of you actually aiming around the screen makes this first-person shooter an interesting addition to the PlayStation 4 lineup.

Lets get this out of the way first though: yes, Blue Estate is on-rails. That word apparently strikes fear into the eyes of anyone who reads it, but in this game’s case, on-rails shooting helps make the motion control mechanic work fluidly.

We had a chance to play through 15 minutes of the game, shooting through bumping nightclubs, waiting rooms, and pretty much anywhere else a gun can-be-but-should-not-be fired (read: everywhere).

There is somewhat of a learning curve when you first pick up the DualShock 4 and use it to aim, but the game’s personality actually helps you overlook this. You won’t worry about improving your skills quickly because the game is set up to shoot, shoot, shoot. Fire as many bullets as you can at the enemies. If your aim is off, keep shooting and you’ll get them. This is Blue Estate.

“This is so cool because the lag is very minimal and it does feel like light gun, but you don’t have to buy any additional stuff,” Kalvachev said.

Blue Estate screenshot 2

A great feature has also been added in the game where you can reset your reticle to the middle of the screen. This is great as you learn the system because you don’t feel forced to go against the grain (read: game) like you often do in traditional motion control experiences.

As for the content of the game, we don’t know too much about the story. What we do know is that it’s lighthearted and will take you anywhere from three to four hours to complete. Jokes are around every corner or, at the very least, the face of a certain “Supreme Leader” that Kalvachev said jokingly, “Could be anyone.”

Blue Estate is coming to PlayStation 4 later this month for $19.99. The game also features local multiplayer co-op that will add replay value. And fear not Xbox fans, Kalvachev told us that publisher Focus Home Interactive is interested in bringing the game to Xbox One and Kinect, adding that a Kinect build has already been put in place.

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Tate Steinlage I write words about video games and sports. Hope you like them.
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