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Mass Effect 3 Commander Shepard Play Arts Kai
Gifts & Gadgets
4 New from
I'm a huge lover of Mass Effect and the Play Arts series so it was like a dream come true when Square Enix confirmed it would be producing Mass Effect Play Arts Kai. However upon seeing the final products I could not be any more disappointed. Sqaure have produced a decent sculpt for the figure, articulation is very good and the accessories also have good variety but the paintjob is terrible. Especially across the face. I don't know why they feel it important to try to add 'shading' and darker tones because it just looks a mess. I don't really understand why the price of these figures keeps creeping up either. Play Arts started down in the 20-30GBP region and are slowly creeping up to a point where it's unreasonable (with only minor increases in size). Factor in the awful quality control from Square Enix regarding their Play Arts line and you have a lot of major concerns for a premium price. If you find this for 30GBP or less and just have to have Male Shep then go for it. I just can't recommend this for the listed price (55GBP).
Ashley suffers from the same issue as Male Shep. Garrus however is much better due to his alien face (Square just can't do humans it seems). He doesn't have a perfect paintjob but it's much more forgiving.
I really don't understand how Square let this series fail so bad when they have produced several other lines of far superier quality.
Saints Row: The Third
10 New from
Hello, I am a 21 year old female gamer who usually sticks to the fantasy adventures and RPGs but I took a chance on this game because I needed a new online game (COD was getting a bit repetitive).
It has a city map like your standard GTA (or similar game) but you can play online co-op through all the missions. Free roam throughout the city can be annoying when your friend keeps angering the gangs and cops but its a ton of fun playing with someone else. You customise your own character (male or female, race, voice etc) and you can buy some fantastic outfits including super hero costumes - lots of customisation! The graphics aren't pushing boundaries but I'd call them average (which isn't at all bad this gen). As always you get to pick between some radio stations while cruising around in your car (or tank or helicopter... or attack plane). The choices can make a difference too, ie at one point your decisions indicate whether you get a certain epic vehicle or not or other choices can net you respect or money depending on which way you go.
This game is overflowing with derp (stupid and funny things) and jokes. It doesn't take itself seriously at all. It's full of rediculous explosions, out of this world vehicles, a BDSM club, zombies and other strange and wonderful things! Well worth a play if you're looking for an unrealistic and crazy game. Personally I think more games should be made with this amount of derp.
Tales Of The Abyss (3DS)
20 New from
I was fortunate enough to preorder this game and got a copy at launch. So far it's been absolutely brilliant. There hasn't been too many JRPGs around recently so this definately is a breath of fresh air and really adds to the 3DS line up! It's just a shame it's so hard to get ahold of.
The 3D effects are not brilliant but the game has been ported and remastered from the PS2 version so do not expect effects to be as good as in Zelda or other Nintendo 1st party titles. If you do pick up this game however, I am sure it will be for the great storyline and gameplay as opposed to the 3D effects!
A nice touch is that the game is voice acted during cutscenes/story related parts. I know this is probably from the PS2 version but it's quite unusual for Nintendo handheld games to have voice acting so this was a big plus.
One other thing to note when getting this game is that it has so much story. Even when you are roaming through a dungeon/explorable areas you are often interrupted by long conversations. When in the field you get classic Tales series character conversations. These are skipable but they add a lot to character background. Personally I love this level of immersion but someone who just wants to get on and play the game may find this frustrating.
This is by far the best 3DS title around right now. It has all the magic of the Tales series and is a top quality JRPG. If you love Final Fantasy and Star Ocean then you'll love this game!
Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Shadow Wars (3DS)
22 New from
Shadow Wars is a rather simple type of SRPG with only got 6 core characters to level and each of them having a different role. Each of them has a personality though even if it is over the top American. The actual game play is very satisfying. I am quite fussy with my SRPGs only really liking Fire Emblem and Valkyria Chronicles but this game pleasantly surprised me. Despite the team being small the missions were fairly varied. One minute youd be blowing up a train or missile base and the next youd be supporting the local militia in a town and getting the civilians out. There are many defeat conditions such as never allowing one of your core 6 Ghosts to die and usually a few other conditions in most levels. Ive done 22 missions so far and my save file states Im only at 21%. Ive spent hours upon hours on it already so theres a lot of game play time here.
The levelling up system is basic. You earn stars for completing certain objectives in missions and at the end you can assign them to the members of the team who took part. I do have one or two issues here - you can only assign stars to the team on the completion of a mission and you can only increase a character by a maximum of 2 stars per mission. Its probably been implemented so you cant power level one character but its a pain when they show you the rewards per level (they are fixed so you cant choose). That doesnt mean to say youll have enough stars to level everyone evenly and you could probably save stars and repeat an earlier mission to assign them to the character you wanted but its a pain and could easily have been avoided with a character menu between the missions.
There is no online multiplayer. I wouldnt have used it but thought Id bring it up anyway. There is offline multiplayer where I believe you only need 1 3DS and you take turns on it but I havent actually tried this. There are also unlockable skirmish missions which I have also yet to attempt but I imagine they are quick maps for people to play on when they dont want to go through the hassle of the storyline. Ive unlocked 13 of these so far. One other random detail which people may wish to know is that there are 4 save slots for this game so quite a few people can play it if youre going to share the game.
The storyline is nothing special but not completely dire either. Its playable and just sets up some background for the game play. The rough gist of it is a corrupt Russian politician is trying to get in power and to do so hes causing a lot of conflict in other European countries. The American Ghost team are sent in to save the day. Very cliched and very American but makes fine background for those who arent picky about storylines.
I found the 3D effects to be very good and they certainly add to overall feel of the game. I find playing this on 2D not as exciting as the graphics are pretty poor even for DS standards. The character portraits I felt were very nice on a more positive note. The music is also nothing exciting but its fitting. It isnt voice acted but that doesnt bother me.
So overall this game is worth 4 stars to me and take note I am judging this on the fun I got out of it and not on the technical side. Its been quite some time since Ive been addicted to a game quite this much. The graphics music and storyline dont bother me very much for a portable game but this has some solid strategic game play and is a great launch title for fans of the genre. Just dont buy this thinking its going to a FPS because it couldnt be more different. I would highly recommend this to those who are looking for an introduction title to SRPGs however due to its low difficulty and simplicity.
Final Fantasy XIII
8 New from
Now I'm a huge Final Fantasy fan. I buy anything with it in the title even if is the extremely average Crystal Chronicals and Fables series. Square really haven't made a decent FF (I didn't get along with XII) in a long long time but I was pleasantly surprised about FFXIII.
GAMEPLAY-Putting it shortly, I found the battle system to be the best in the series. As a bit of background, it's a very quick ATB system and each character has a different role which you can switch on the fly. Medics can only heal, commandos attack, ravengers use magic, I think you get the idea. You do sadly only control one character but to keep the fierce pace of the battles it would be impossible to use more than one. For the first 20 hours of the game you are forced to use certain characters which I can understand people would have a problem with. I personally liked this because I was forced to use someone who I otherwise would never have touched.
Now I know people are majorly hating this game because of no towns or map travel. Well there are a one or two towns during the first 20 hours of the game but it isn't really appropriate for them to visit more. If you played the game you'd see that say, for example chapter # you played through a forest. Then the next chapter you'd play through a canyon. Then after that they would reach the town. It makes sense to me. Alright there is no world map but the characters are taking time to go places and don't suddenly end up there instantly. Another point I should make, sure the beginning of the game is linear (what beginning of FF game isn't?) but once you reach chapter 11 you have a huge Calm Lands-like area to explore, except it's waaaay bigger. There are also several places off of this which yes you CAN go back to explore post game and there a loads of difficult challenges plus 80ish missions to complete. I've been playing 75 hours so far and I'm not even halfway through this stuff.
STORY-Epic... Simply epic... Square do not fail with their stories and this was, for me, the best in the series. It had everything and each character had a key role in the story. You felt like there was no lead in game which was really nice. I do like Lightning but don't you just hate it when you play through an RPG and you get some random character who has no real meaning or participation in the plot?
Anyway the plot gets pretty complicated nearer the end but I like that. Also the game impliments a lot of flashbacks and I felt like I had a WOW moment in almost every chapter. I was just completely absorbed. I know some people complain that you get thrown into the game without any background. Fair enough. This wasn't a problem for me. I felt it was better you learned about the characters past slowly as you played rather than straight away.
MUSIC-I brought the Japanese soundtrack a few months before release of the game in Europe and at first I thought it ws kind of average except for the Blinded By Light battle theme. Anyway after a listening to it a few times I completely fell in love with it and playing the game has certainly strengthened that love. I will confess, the music doesn't seem to have the diversity of older titles but it is still of a very high standard. Oh and for all of you who are hating Leona Lewes right now, the song really fitted in well when it was played in game. I was pleasantly surprised how emotional it was. I've listened to the Japanese alternative and to be honest I found it a rather weak J-Pop song compared to the quality Square usually put in their games.
CONCLUSION-I could have gone on longer but I'm got no more room. For me, this game was perfect. Graphics were of course exceptional and just in general this was an amazing experience.
Bench Women's Buzz Zip Thru Knit (Black)
This is a great jumper, material is lovely and soft and it's a bit thicker than a lot of the other bench jumpers I own. A word of warning though I have quite a few other older bench jumpers and I have all of them in medium and they all fit pretty tightly. I got this in medium and it was a little big. It still fits and all, and I can wear it out fine but a small would have fitted much better as I prefer my clothes tight fitting. So yeah be warned which size you get. I think bench may have changed their sizes recently because I brought a t-shirt not long ago as well and had to get XS.