Concentration Mode, also referred to as simply Concentration in Call of Juarez: Gunslinger, is an ability present in the series that slows down time, allowing the player to take out multiple enemies with ease. In Call of Juarez: Bound in Blood it functions by allowing the player to carefully tag up to twelve enemies (as Ray McCall), or eliminate them (as Thomas McCall) before resuming normal time. In Call of Juarez, Call of Juarez: The Cartel and Call of Juarez: Gunslinger it works differently, instead having the player fire their weapon(s) while in slow motion.
Call of Juarez
Ray McCall and the Unidentified Deputy share the same Concentration Mode. They holster their revolvers, and pull them out. Time will slow down drastically, and one or two reticles (depending on how many revolvers are in the player's inventory) will pass across the screen, allowing the player to aim and shoot wherever they please. After the Concentration Mode ends, it takes roughly 10 seconds for it to charge up again.
Billy Candle's Concentration Mode, however, has less time. If Billy aims his bow, time will also slow down, giving him enough time to fire 1-2 arrows. Afterwards, he will lower his bow, although the player can aim it again within seconds.
Call of Juarez: Bound in Blood
Bound in Blood addresses the problems with Call of Juarez' Concentration Mode by requiring the player to kill six enemies in order to charge a meter; it is depicted by a revolver's cylinder in the corner of the screen, with skulls appearing on the chambers representing the amount of enemies killed. When fully charged, if the player doesn't use concentration mode within a 60 second countdown, the meter will drop to three chambers. When active, the Concentration Mode will cause the screen to have a blue tint, enemies have an orange hue and the reticule will turn into an eye.
In Ray McCall's Concentration Mode, when the player moves the right stick/mouse it will assign up to 12 targets on enemies, explosives and oil lamps. The amount of shots depends on how much ammo is in both revolvers. After the time limit runs out Ray unleashes a barrage of bullets that can only be avoided if an enemy had been ducking for cover.
Thomas McCall has two seperate Concentration Modes. The primary Concentration Mode slows down time, automatically picking up to six targets to shoot, in the order of how close they are to the player. To fire during bullet time, the player has to stimulate the action of pulling a revolver's hammer by moving the mouse/right stick backwards in quick motion to get as many shots in as possible, given the time limit. The second is used with the Bow, if the player aims the weapon time will slow temporarily, giving him a limited window to fire an arrow.
At certain points within the game, the player character will take up a position beside double doors, marked by red footprints, and the AI controlled brother will line up on the other side. Then they will burst through the doors activating another type of Concentration Mode more akin to Ray's in the original Call of Juarez. Using dual revolvers, the player must aim and shoot enemies manually in slow motion. Notably, these are the only points in the game in which Thomas is able to use dual revolvers.
Call of Juarez: The Cartel
The Cartel requires the player to get 12 kills in order to fill the Concentration Mode meter. Also, Concentration Mode can be used with any weapon except grenades.
Ben McCall's Concentration Mode slows down time, with Ben spouting various Biblical passages laced with profanity. Weapons will do double damage, and shotguns have the ability to send enemies flying onto their backs.
Eddie Guerra's Concentration Mode also slows down time, however, Eddie can quicky reload his weapons. Eddie will exclaim various references to gambling.
Kim Evans' Concentration Mode again slows down time, however, Kim can both move and reload faster. During this she will talk about her background as an FBI agent.
Call of Juarez: Gunslinger
Concentration is again more difficult to fill than in the first two titles, but even if it isn't completely filled it can be activated, but will last for less time than if it was full, growing lesser with shorter amounts of Concentration. Concentration slows time, and enemies are highlighted with a red tint. With no Concentration at all, the player can still press the activation button, as a way of locating enemies, as they will briefly flash red. The meter is represented by a revolver in the corner of the screen that, as more Concentration is gained, becomes more
complete as a picture. This icon is absent in the True West difficulty mode.
There are multiple skills that improve the effectiveness of Concentration Mode. From the Gunslinger skill tree, Making Time grants 50% faster movement and running while in Concentration, Cold Rage gives +50% damage, Cold Blooded bestows +50% longer Concentration, and Readiness ensures the player's active weapon will be fully reloaded when Concentration is begun. By the Numbers will refill the concentration bar after the player reaches a combo level that is a multiple of 6. In the Ranger skill tree, Headhunter gives 50% more Concentration for each headshot, and Exectioner opens a more unique Concentration Mode akin to Thomas's in Call of Juarez: Bound in Blood. It marks enemies for execution via headshots in exchange for all of the Concentration meter. Finally, in the Trapper skill tree, Waste Not makes the multiplier to stack by 2 levels instead of 1 each kill, Devil's Shotgun automatically reloads shotguns during Concentration, and Sixth Sense causes the crosshair to mark enemies for easier disposal.