Codex Gamicus

Time Crisis 4 is the fourth installment in Namco's Time Crisis series. As with its predecessors, the game introduces new features to the gameplay engine alongside a new story and roster of characters. It was initially released for arcade circulation in 2006 and was ported to the PlayStation 3 in 2007.


The game begins in California, where intelligence officials from both the US Military and the V.S.S.E. learn about a top secret weapon targeted for terrorists' smuggling.

William Rush infiltrates a pier to gather more information, and finds that the enemy has already acquired the insect-like weapons (codenamed "Terror Bite"). After being told by Elizabeth Conway about an information leak incident at the airport, Rush then heads to the airport to rescue V.S.S.E. agents Giorgio Bruno and Evan Bernard, and advance further to subdue the weapons smugglers. After defeating all of the enemies, they discover U.S. Army dog tags on the enemies' bodies and realize that the terrorists are soldiers like Rush.

After Rush found out about the terrorists' identities (The Special Biological Weapons Research Unit, a.k.a. the Hamlin Battalion), he was forced to thwart the enemies' plot to destroy a dam alone. After having to put up with the battalion's destruction at the dam, Rush, Giorgio, and Evan fly to a secluded bio-weapons research facility in Wyoming only to discover the Battalion's alleged smuggling at San Francisco was actually an act of treason. Elizabeth Conway then tells the men that the Hamlin Battalion has hiijacked Buckley Air Force Base near Aurora, Colorado, prompting the men to rush to the AFB. As William, Giorgio, and Evan invade the AFB from the outside, a couple of Unmanned Combat Air Vehicles (UCAVs) departed the base without warning. The mercenary Wild Dog also appears and attacks the agents, forcing the agents to defend themselves. After they land their helicopter safely, they pursue Wild Dog into the base and defeat him, ending with Wild Dog detonating himself for the third time. In the PlayStation 3 port of the game, Rush encounters and defeats Wild Fang, Wild Dog's younger partner from the previous game.

Colonel Gregory Barrows reveals that he was the one behind the stealing of the Terror Bites and that he ordered the nuclear-armed stealth bombers, intending to destroy the United States as a retaliation scheme for the poor treatment he received from the U.S military. The two agents gun down Barrows. The UCAVs, which have already launched several nuclear missiles, self-destruct when the agents press a big red button on the control computers.

The PlayStation 3 port of the game contains plot elements not seen in the arcade game.[3]


Time Crisis 4 was first shown at E3 2006 prior to its recent final revision arcade release.

One major change is the addition of the multi-screen/multi-hiding system, introduced in Time Crisis: Project Titan. Unlike Project Titan, which players went on the offensive, players are placed on the defensive. In Project Titan, players had to hide and shoot arrows to switch screens. Screen switching has been refined to allow the player to merely point the gun outside the screen to move around.

Time Crisis 4 also utilizes a new light gun control with infrared emitters. Prior to this, all Namco light gun games used gun controllers that relied on cathode ray timing. Because Namco's light guns with cathode ray timing utilized memory chip-to-lens pointing, the arcade cabinet designers had to ensure that the infrared-emitting light gun controllers would provide the same accuracy as their cathode ray timing-based gun provided in the past. This delayed the game's release given past accuracy issues with IR light guns.

The player can choose to customize gun calibration and/or turn the blowback on or off with a pre-game code explained in the cabinet. Time Crisis 4, like its predecessors, is available either in a 29" standard twin cabinet or a 52" deluxe twin.

Time Crisis 4 also includes the multiple weapon system introduced in Time Crisis 3, with the pistol, shotgun, machine gun, and grenade launcher.[4]

The game also features a voice navigation system that guides players through different situations. Given the voice navigation system, the game can be voiced either in Japanese or English. Prior to Time Crisis 4, the game was voiced exclusively in English.

PlayStation 3 release[]

The game was released for the Sony PlayStation 3 exclusively bundled with the GunCon 3 light gun peripheral.[5] The release dates are as follows:

  • November 20, 2007 in the United States
  • December 20, 2007 in Japan
  • April 18, 2008 for Europe
  • April 24, 2008 for Australia

The PlayStation 3 edition features 480p (4:3) and 720p (16:9 widescreen) support and a specially-programmed first-person shooter mode, which players engage combat similar to a typical FPS game, but with manual gun pointing, aiming and firing in addition to arcade mode.[6] Players play as Captain William Rush for 5 levels and as VSSE agents Giorgio Bruno or Evan Bernard for 10 levels through the game's "complete mission", with footage not seen in arcades.[3][7] Much like its predecessors, it featured the Crisis Missions. The Crisis Missions has some backstories, starring characters from previous installments.

Time Crisis 4 will be re-released on the PlayStation 3 as part of Time Crisis: Razing Storm, set for release in September 2010, with support of the PlayStation Move controller.


The game received mixed reviews. Matt Miller of Game Informer gave the game a score of 4.25 out of 10,[8] citing a poor first-person mode, "ludicrous plot", and poor shooting mechanic.[8]

GameSpot gave the game a 5.5 out of 10[4] whilst IGN gave it a 8.0 out of 10.[9] GamePro rated Time Crisis 4 a score of 4 out of 5, saying the games plays just like the arcade, but replayability is an issue.[10] G4tv gave it a 4 out of 5.

One of the main key areas was the Guncon 3 controller included with the game. Miller states that the controller "feels cheap," with analog sticks that are "chintzy and hard to use." Referring to the left-hand subgrip which forces the main shooting handgrip to be held with the right hand, Miller claims that the Guncon 3 "hardly accommodates left-handed players."[8] Ryan Davis of GameSpot expressed that the complexity of the control scheme seems to contradict the pick-up-and-play mentality of the light gun genre.[4]


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