I spent a small chunk of timing messing around with Gauntlet DS at Penny Arcade Expo this past weekend. The look of the game and sound of the game are spot on (the game uses some of the original sound files), a perfect fit for the DS and some fun portable play, but I wasn't totally enchanted with the games controls. Designed by Backbone for a release this fall, the game is a throw-back to the original retro action classic and it really nails most everything it's going for. And the problem with the controls aren't completely Backbone's fault. It's mostly because the game plays on a DS using the D-Pad and that just doesn't translate very well for me. The controls felt a bit mushy and having to turn to take on an opponent, especially with the elf, could be frustrating at times. I longed, while playing the game, to have a joystick to fine-tune my shots with.Fortunately, the game more than makes up for this one weakness with surprisingly robust multiplayer features including both cooperative and competitive multiplay. The game supports up to four player coop and in-game voice chat. It even uses it's own servers which means, I was told, no silly friend's codes to worry over and input. The campaign includes 40 maps in three realms. The competitive play (which they weren't showing at PAX) includes ranked multiplayer games like death match, team death match and treasure hoard mode played across 16 different maps. This seems like it's going to be a must by for fans of the classic Gauntlet.