Sam Gideon is simply the coolest third-person shooter action hero on a modern HD console. Sure, Nathan Drake clambers up ruins and trains with expert skill and quips at the ready, and Marcus Fenix brutes and shoots his way through the Locust hordes. But neither of those fine fellows will kill an enemy with a lethal pirouette. Or slide across the floor like Tom Cruise from Risky Business while looking like Casshern. Nathan or Marcus typically take cover from a handful of bad guys against a conveniently located and sizable chunk of wall -- Sam can use even a tiny girder lying on the floor as cover against a screenful of incoming missiles. And take the time to coolly smoke a cigarette while under such heavy fire (which, as a gameplay element, is actually used to distract the enemy).
Vanquish, the newest title from development studio Platinum Games (MadWorld, Bayonetta) and videogame director Shinji Mikami (Resident Evil 4, God Hand). I mention all the titles in the previous sentence because they all feature something that Vanquish maintains: a distinct and effortless sense of style. Its plot, like a guilty pleasure action-movie from the '80s, is serviceable and amusing, while not being too intrusive or indulgent -- an improvement over Bayonetta's long-winded nonsense that served as cut-scenes.
In the future, a splinter group of Russians take over a space station, use it to destroy San Francisco, and demand unconditional surrender from the US under threat of taking out New York in the same manner. Sam and his experimental ARS (Augmented Reaction Suit) power armor accompany a detachment of Marines led by Lieutenant Colonel Robert Burns on a mission to breach the space station and take it back from the Russians. The dialogue alternates between traditional plot delivery and amusing banter that seems to openly mock the gung-ho bro-tastic dialogue in similar games.