Shooting is smooth and consistent, bumping up the sensitivity a notch helping to work within the pacing. Sam's abilities let him, literally, dive into the fight, sliding into robots before unleashing a kick of incredible magnitude leaving nothing but nuts and bolts (Ratchet & Clank would have a field day).
Those smaller skirmishes are fun, but familiar. This acknowledgment comes in the form of variety and scale, one fight in the third act (of five) taking place on a dizzying railway, the opposing robots flipping upside down and around. Gravity takes effect, explosions knocking debris down onto the players car, while the mass of cities whizzes by in the background.
Another section revolves around a gargantuan tank called a Kreon, dwarfing every building in sight, and taking down many as its lasers do their work. This makes a prior level, which has chunks of a collapsing tower rolling over the playfield, seem like nothing at all, the sense this war is taking its toll evident in the visuals and frenzied pacing of the action itself.
The final conflict doesn't resolve this same level of scale, that left to the final cinematics, but Vanquish makes an apology (so it seems) with a wildly kooky credits sequence that is entirely playable. That makes the sequel-ensured ending easy to swallow, or even forget in the face of a credits sequence that won't even stop the mass of shooting on display.
Vanquish is rated M (Mature) by the ESRB for Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Strong Language. This game can also be found on: PS3.