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Product Reviews

Reviewer:
jcmonkey
Reviews:
0
Votes:
18 (94% helpful)

Page 1 of 0

  1.  One Word - Unbelievable!

    Posted: 

    In Uncharted: Golden Abyss, Drake is hired by a shady, obnoxious man called Dante to go on a treasure hunt. As per usual, the hunt doesn't exactly go smoothly and Drake winds up in the middle of the jungle with a new love interest by the name of Chase. There's no indication as to where this fits into the timeline of the other three games, but roving reporter Elena is completely missing this time. Bend Studios has done a solid job of staying true to the series' roots, delivering a cinematic, character-focused experience from top to bottom. You do all the things you do in other Uncharted games - monkey your way across canyons, solve mysteries, and engage in cover-based combat.You wouldn't know, from playing through the game, that it was made by a different developer.

    The Vita's new gameplay mechanisms - the aforementioned touchscreen, rear touchpad, and gyroscope - are unavoidable. If you want to play the whole game through without getting fingerprints all over your Vita, you're out of luck. All of those features are compulsory at several different points in the game. Personally, I thought the use of those features was inventive - for example, you're required to take pictures of landmarks as you go along, and to adjust the zoom on the camera you have to drag your finger up and down on the rear touchpad. At other points, you have to make charcoal rubbings of engraved objects, which you do by rubbing your finger over the touchscreen. I recognise that some people aren't going to want to use those features at all, but their implementation was interesting. Golden Abyss makes use of absolutely everything the Vita has to offer.

    The game must also be pushing the Vita's graphics and processing power to its limits, as well. While it's not really comparable to the later PS3 games, the visuals are remarkable for a handheld device, and probably on par with the graphics of the original in the series, Uncharted: Drake's Fortune. Nowhere is this more obvious than in the animation, or lack thereof, in the characters' hair. Faces move and express emotions, but the hair framing them is dead still.

    My only critiscm of the game is the lack of multiplayer, however the single player campaign is of a good length only slightly shorter than its big brothers on the ps3 and collecting all the hidden objects and chasing trophies is going to take a vast amount of your time up.

    All in all i couldnt have asked for or expected a better game to launch the playstation vita with. Hopefully there will be many more adventures with Drake during the vitas LONG life cycle.

  2.  PS Vita's Visual Showcase

    Posted: 

    If there is to be one title that every Ps Vita owner should have on launch it's Wipeout 2048!

    The first thing that strikes you about the title is it's visuals. Blockbusters hits such as Uncharted Golden Abyss truly flex the Vitas muscles but for a showcase of the Ps Vitas new OLED screen then this is the game for you. Colours and visuals are vibrant and crisp all running at a smooth 30fps. With so much going on screen you will truly be impressed by the eye candy that wipeout 2048 offers, nothing else comes close to demonstrating the power of the Vita at present. Period.

    As with all titles in the franchise you will be expected to make clever use of you power ups and boost to outsmart your opponents as the AI has been ramped up significantly from previous games. With clever use of offensive and defensive tactics you will have to be quick on those analog and shoulder buttons if you want to stand a chance of progressing from track to track as your senses are pounded with awesome music, sound effects and visuals that will leave you feeling satisfied with the hard earned cash you just parted with (or not if you bought the 3G vita and got this amazing game for FREE).

    As expected there are a plethora of tracks and vehicles that can be unlocked as you further progress through the various classes. The campaign itself is impressively long which covers 7 whole seasons which increase in difficulty as you progress. As you move forward through the campaign you will encounter standard racing, battles, phase and lets not forget your standard time trial courses.

    The must publicised loading times have now been vastly improved with the release of the recent patch, and although some may still feel, they are slightly too long for a handheld game (30 secs average between races), I for one feel they are justified by the amount of detail and content this game produces.

    With it's gorgeous looks, heart pumping soundtrack from the likes of the Chemical brothers, DJ Fresh and more and gameplay that truly is as enjoyable as ever, Wipeout 2048 is worth every penny and should be one title every Sony Ps Vita owner should own. Go get your copy now!

  3.  An Amazing Pick up n Play Title

    Posted: 

    First things first, this is an arcade game. There's no ifs, ands or buts about it - Virtua Tennis 4: World Tour Edition is a game that is intended to be picked up and played with immediate accessibility, and given the fact that it's a portable title, it's all the better for it.

    Visually, VT4: WTE is a stunner. Despite the fact that it's running on a handheld system, it looks absolutely gorgeous from start to finish. The character models are flawlessly rendered, and player animations are up there with anything we've ever seen on a home console. Colours are bright and vibrant, making excellent use of the Vita's OLED screen and, perhaps most importantly of all, the game runs without dropping so much as a frame during play.

    In terms of what's offered from the game's play modes, there's certainly enough here to keep players of all interest levels happy. If you're planning on really getting stuck in, then the World Tour mode is the one for you. Here you'll be able to create your own player based on a pre-existing character model, with the option of taking a photograph of yourself and placing it onto your character, creating the novel experience of genuinely being part of the game.

    The main reason I love it, however, is the fact that it plays like an absolute dream. With relatively straightforward controls meaning that you're left to worry about your on the court performance rather than contorting your fingers, it really is a joy to play. No matter what play mode you opt for, there's always something new to see or do, and lessons to be learned.

    Aside from the World Tour mode, you can also take on a series of different single player modes, such as the obligatory Arcade Mode, as well as all the usual online modes (which play perfectly over WiFi), and the impressive new Vita exclusive play modes. While I'll be the first to admit that these modes are more gimmicky than anything else, there's a lot of fun to be had with them - if only for their innovative use of the Vita's technology. For example, you can play a match in first person perspective, where moving the Vita around will let you look around your in-game surroundings. It's a really novel experience and, somewhat surprisingly, it's one that works really well when it comes to actually playing, even if you will spend most of your time moving the Vita around in your hands.

    Another innovative game mode is the two player tabletop tennis offering, where you and a friend can take each other on using a single Vita. The court is viewed from a top down perspective, and you control your player's movements by dragging your finger around the court. You hit the ball by flicking in the direction you want to hit it in a timely manner. It's simple and it works. Arguably it's the most enjoyable feature to use in order to show your Vita off to jealous friends!

    Ultimately, if Virtua Tennis 4: World Tour Edition was a PS3 or Xbox 360 game, it would probably feel a little hackneyed due to its somewhat dated control scheme and it's arcade persuasions, but the fact is that it lends itself superbly to the portable nature of the Vita. It's made for being picked up and played in short bursts with friends or alone, and that's really what handheld games are all about. If you want something with a more serious tone, or that has more depth and difficulty, then this might not be for you, but when it comes to Vita launch titles, this is right up there with the very best.

  4.  Not perfect, but still the best handheld football game ever.

    Posted: 

    It took me a moment to realize what it was, but from first time I saw the FIFA Football box, I knew there was something missing. The cover art was the same as EA Sport's most recent release, the in-game menus were identical, and it looked exactly as I would expect. Then I realized what it was -- the "12" was missing from the title. That might seem like a minor quibble, but it turned out to be a telling omission. Many of the franchise's compelling new features, such as the Tactical Defending System, Precision Dribbling, and the Player Impact Engine are missing in this version of the game.

    However FIFA Football does features many of the bells and whistles of the console releases, such as Career Mode for managing one of over 500 teams and a Be A Pro mode where players can create their own athlete and lead them to legendary status.

    The game looks stunning on Vita, especially when it comes to player animations. They move as naturally as players might expect in a real footy match. And stadiums look lively with massive crowds surrounding the field.

    FIFA handles well on the Vita, too, at least when sticking with the traditional thumbsticks and buttons. Players can opt to use the front touchscreen for passing, free kicks and defense, or the rear touch pad to shoot at the goal. All are solid alternatives, but not as comfortable as standard controls.

    Players use the left thumbstick to move while the right stick is for special ball moves such as fakes. They work well, but it's tough to make precision passes using the left thumbstick. Also, I found myself accidentally tapping the rear touch pad on several occasions, firing off unintended shots on goal.

    FIFA Football is by far the best football game i have ever played on any handheld device however the game could have used a bit more polish overall, but it's a solid first endeavor for Vita. If this game is the basis for the inevitable future FIFA releases on the PS Vita then the future looks bright for EA.

  5.  Please Dont Waste Your Money

    Posted: 

    While bearing the official Rugby World Cup 2011 logo on the box and emblazoned across menus, in tandem with the iconic "World in Union" tune, in reality only around half of the international teams taking part in the quadrennial tournament are officially represented in the game. Australia and New Zealand, the world's top two sides, the latter of which is also this year's host nation, are present--but not in any authorised capacity. There are no Tri-Nations, Six Nations, or Sevens World Series tournaments to be found, and where developer HB Studios' Rugby '08 allowed you to relive more than two dozen classic World Cup scenarios, in its place is now a forgettable goal-kicking mode.

    Regardless of which of the handful of game modes you decide to take on, you'll fall victim to the inconsistent artificial intelligence. At the easiest settings, you can run straight through gaping holes left in the opposition's defensive line, run parallel to the other team without them taking the initiative to tackle, and watch as they forget what they were doing and give up chases early. The AI scales in difficulty as the tournament progresses, and teams do summon some enthusiasm on the way to the grand final, but expect a mostly unimpeded run for the silverware. At the easy and medium difficulty settings, rivals don't put up much of a fight, but cranking it up to hard provides significantly more challenge. At this highest setting, opposition players rush and lunge at you from a distance like over-caffeinated super cats as you attempt to clear from the ruck, and smother you before you can offload the ball after winning a line-out. Even when grossly outnumbered, the AI never attempts to hold you up in goal as you crash over the line. Fullbacks can be danced around with a late change in direction, and, once you've broken through, the opposition team follows you around like a pack of stray dogs chasing cars made out of steak.

    Rugby World Cup 2011 feels like a game rushed out the door to cash in on the popularity of its real-world namesake event. Broken AI and a limited number of single-player modes make this an irritating and short-lived affair with little replay value. While some fun can be had in local and online multiplayer, there are concerns about its long-term community support and the potential for finding competition. This is poor game that is hard to justify to even the most ardent of rugby fans who are willing to overlook its numerous flaws.

  6.  Superb in 2D - a Masterpiece in 3D

    Posted: 

    Even more than a decade after its release, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is still hailed as the perfect example of superb gameplay and captivating storytelling. Now a new generation will get the chance to venture through a rich and breathtaking world, meet tons of exciting characters, and fight through perilous dungeons- all in 3D.

    The Legend of Zelda series is synonymous with perfect gameplay and Ocarina of Time is the prime example. Combat is smooth and compelling, offering players a wide arsenal of weapons to defeat enemies, while the freedom to explore such a rich and complex world is unmatched. It's no surprise that Nintendo left the original gameplay and mechanics untouched- they're flawless.

    Being more than a decade old, Nintendo was wise to give the game a new coat of shine. It may not compete with today's generation of games, but the enhanced graphics undoubtedly make it visually superior to the original.

    If you're a gamer seeking flawless gameplay, an expansive world to explore, and one of the most memorable stories in video game history, Ocarina of Time 3DS is for you. The game that took the world by storm has finally received a well-deserved remake, giving us a fresh new chance to help Link conquer evil and restore peace in the land of Hyrule!

  7.  Standard Nintendo Launch Title

    Posted: 

    Pilotwings Resort sticks to the recipe like a fly to a jet plane's windscreen. You start on novice stage learning the basics of your environment (effectively, the skies above a quaint little holiday island) and your various craft. Then you work through bronze, silver, gold and platinum cups, each offering a selection of challenges. Sometimes you're flying your plane through a series of rings, shooting at targets; or you might be swooping gracefully over the town on your hang-glider, tasked with taking a glorious photo of a historic lighthouse. The control experience is different for each craft - the jetpack is all about careful bursts of speed and constant downward glances at the land below, while on the glider you must look out for thermal air currents to provide you with extra height.
    I cant help feeling that this game was released more so to show what 3d effects the 3ds was capable off rather than a true game that gamers can enjoy, and it does this nicely, out of all the launch games this has the best use of 3d yet. However this is also the only 3ds game i have played to date where i have had to turn down the 3d effect to halfway as the combination of bright colors really do hurt your eyes on full 3d after short time playing.
    The new analogue thumbpad works really nicely in this game, giving you intricate and comfortable control through some tricky aerial courses. However there was certainly room here to provide more in terms of options and activities, this was after all a key launch title for nintendo, so some sort of Street Pass implementation would have been welcome. But for gamers wanting a nicely sedate, yet increasingly fiddly and demanding challenge, Pilotwings Resort delivers.

  8.  Another Satisfying Lego Title

    Posted: 

    I doubt many people will even need to read a review for this game as im sure anyone who has even played a demo of one of the many Lego games knows exactly what to expect from this title. Like marmite you either love them or hate them. I personally love them, especially the simple pick up and play approach to these games particularly for a handheld console.
    Lego Pirates of the Caribbean is at its best when you're either constructing items from vibrant plastic blocks or bashing them and collecting the little pips that go flying everywhere. Equally fun is the game's silly, wordless retelling of the Pirates of the Caribbean films, with cutscenes as sly and charming as Jack Sparrow himself.
    Almost every cutscene has some silly surprise or another, and they are as colorful as the vibrant in-game visuals. The 3D effect definetly adds to the experience even just to give you a sense of how high you are or how deep the water your swimming in is, little things like this really make the graphics stunning (for a lego game anyway).
    The main adventures also feature duels, though these ones involve halfheartedly mashing a button and then participating in the world's slowest, most uninspiring quick-time event. The dreariness of duels is mirrored by the standard combat, in which one or two enemies might gang up on you, but the only one that fights back is the one you engage. If you hit the button five times, down they go--no fuss, no muss. It's so simple, you will likely never need any of the health-giving hearts that enemies drop, let alone actually die. Therein lies the biggest flaw of this game - its so easy, including the games puzzles (if you can call them that)but the joy is in the journey.
    You could complete all four stories in as many hours if you don't linger, though every level is filled with secrets that are accessible only by returning to them in free play which is a must to keep the longetivity of this game alive.
    Overall a very good game that im glad i invested in, and i enjoyed it immensely whilst it lasted. I think the best advice is if you've never played a lego game before buy one of the cheaper older ones first and if you enjoy that you will enjoy this.

  9.  3DS's New Fighting Champ

    Posted: 

    Had this game from launch and so glad i made that choice.
    Dead or Alive: Dimensions' cast of impossibly proportioned females makes it all too easy to dismiss it as a form of mere titillation, rather than a serious fighting game. Yet underneath its busty exterior lie fast-paced 3D battles that eschew complex button combinations in favour of agile reversals and counterattacks.
    Graphics are top-notch and a big smack in the face for anyone doubting the 3ds's capability - if games like this are being released so early in the consoles life then the future looks very promising for this wonderful handheld. With such fantastic graphics it also moves a an incredibly smooth rate with is i suppose the most important feature for a fighting game.
    What makes this game special is anyone can pick it up and pull off winning combos straight away (there is a fantastic tutorial tagged into chronicle mode also), but to master it will take a while especially considering there are 25 charaters all with different styles and combos to perfect. Perfecting the throw and counters will take dedication, but you will be more than willing to put the time into this great game.
    While most fighting games shoehorn their storylines into their arcade modes, Dimensions tackles things differently, with an ambitious mode called Chronicle. It tells the story of the first four Dead or Alive tournaments via in-engine cutscenes and prerendered videos, which are split across five separate chapters and interspersed with one-on-one battles. Trying to make sense of the story is a nigh-on-impossible task, though but it is a nice addition to the normal arcade, tag battles and online modes. Street-pass and spot-pass are very much part of this game also setting up throwdown challenges from people you meet through the 3ds.
    Overall, a great fantastic game. Everyone should pick this one up, especially since there isn't much out right now for the 3DS. Its worth the money to add to your library.

  10.  Another Magical Disney Classic!

    Posted: 

    What a film! As a family we sat down to watch this on blu-ray over the weekend with our 5 year old daughter and none of us could take our eyes from the screen.
    My daughter is princess mad (sleeping beauty being her favourite) but after watching this Rapunzel is now her favourite,
    The story is very simple as our most disney classics (prince, princess, villain - im sure you can guess what happens) but somehow disney manages to make simple storys into magical musical masterpieces and long may it continue.
    Its got everything comedy, action, adventure, unforgettable characters and some of the most beautiful songs disney has ever created. My wife and daughter could not help but shed a tear at the ending due to how fantastic the whole experience was (OK, maybe i nearly did too).
    This is such a fitting film to mark disney's 50th classic release and hopefully there will be many more for years to come - although they have set the bar very high with this.
    If your kids have any interest in disney films then do not hesistate to add this to your collection. I promise you the whole family will enjoy whatever their age.