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8 New from
Picked a copy up yesterday after enjoying the demo.
You can tell this game is going to be a little bit different straight from the off when it gives you a little task during the install process....I wont spoil this but...nice touch.
First impressions are this is going to be a decent game. Its a huge leap forward for this type of game and the characters and story line really keep you interested.
After a slow start and a little time to get used to the, lets face it, unorthodox control system the game really starts to come into its own. You play several characters in the story and it didnt take me long to become engrossed with the plot. Often some of the really nice moments in the game come in the understated areas of the gameplay (I enjoyed the virtual office choice) or the sudden moments when you need to make quick decisions and in turn these create differnt paths for the story to take. That said, im not actually sure you do anything wrong.
Visually the game is stunning which makes it believable. Crowds jostle, eybrows crease in anger, condensation on windows and the whole game just feels real as a result. The best I have seen in this department.
The only negative comment I have is the slight lack of a gameyness feel. It can feel a bit like you are on a narrative conveyor belt now and then.
All in all its been genuinly gripping so far and very different so am interested in any one elses opinion.
Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
22 New from
I will start by saying this is one of my favorite franchises but I will try and review this as fairly as possible.
Single player campaign: Firstly it IS quite short, I completed this on a hard difficulty in 5-6 hours. My personal opinion is that it is actually not as good as COD 4. For some reason I just did not feel as involved with the characters and the story line during the missions and was wondering why this was. I have come to the conclusion that some of the action is just far too intense. There are the usuall sniper missions where it calms down a little bit and you can employ a more tactical approach and take in some of the atmosphere and scenery in from the game which I really enjoyed, I just found too many of the levels gave me the feeling I was storming the beaches at Normandy or something. I found myself running through blankets of gunfire looking for cover and racing to the checkpoints on occasions. Im not sure this is a true reflection of Modern Warfare. It was fun but nothing groundbreaking.
Multiplayer: I am sure by now everybody knows this is what people will be buying this game for and I think its great fun.
The destructive environment is really improved and I am pleased to be back to the modern weapons which sound superb. One thing I would mention about the weapons though is that in this COD many of them seem a bit samey, and by this I mean you can rack up kills easily with nearly all of them. Im previous COD's I rapidly found a crowd favorite (M16 and MP5) but in this one the majority of them seem to kill equally as quickly and accurately irrespective of the stats.
The XP system is a much better idea as they reward things like headshots and shots from distance. I think the way you can customise the kill streak is also good although this has brought with it its own little issues. 11 kills is not enough for harriers and choppers in my opinion. When you combine this with the sentry gun and chopper at 7 kills these easily rack up kills for you as well so you race away 11 kills. The result is that some games are over in 4-5 mins. I dont envy new players to the game.
There have been a few small issues with the servers but they seem fixed now and i have found it much easier to get online with my freinds as you can also just jump into their games now without having to mess around with invites etc. Definite Improvement.
I STILL find it difficult to tell which direction people are coming from sometimes but have recently purchased the Turtle P21 headset from Play. It allows you to listen to the game sound and chat together (both volumes controlled independently so you can adjust as neccesary) and this absolutely helps and gives you an advantage as you can clearly hear the direction of any footsteps. I have a review on these as well if anyone is looking for a headset. I think this is the best one out there at the minute.
All in all its a game I would not be without but is still not perfect. Without doubt still the best FPS. 8.5/10
Turtle Beach Ear Force P21 Stereo Headset
3 New from
Ok, this is a decent headset but not perfect. It does feel a little cheap and plastic for the price but does what it says on the tin.
I have been using this the last couple of days on the new COD Modern Warfare 2 and it works well. Being able to hear the in game noises and chat (turned down) together really helps and the stereo sound absolutely helps tell which direction people are coming from more easily. Also really comfy which helps for longer sessions.Only real downside, and I think it was mentioned below, is that there is a little bit of static noise you pic up but apart from that im really happy with this purchase. 7/10
14 New from
Ok, I understand why people are saying this is'nt much different from 09, however, 09 was a great game. The game did'nt need a radical overhaul so why change a winning formula.
I have been playing this game for several days now both online and offline and I am conviced its evolved from 09 and is indeed an improved game as a result for the following reasons:
Yes, it is slightly harder to score but thats why this game is now considered better than pro evo. In the old days massive scorelines were not unusual in Fifa but the games have now traded places with Fifa being more of a simulation. If you are having trouble scoring and are getting tackled all the time then try working the ball around the pitch a little more. Pass along the back line and to the players in space instead of just trying to sprint forward in the hope of getting past the defenders. This doesnt happen in real football matches much.
The result: A very rewarding game. I dont agree that you can only score by deflections etc. I have scored 30 yard volleys by executing well placed lobbed through balls, plenty of headers and volleys from crosses (work the space) and if you are struggling to find the corners of the goal then try using R1 to place a more precise shot. Use the one two's, they work. I personally think some people need to give it more time and practice before posting some of these bad reviews.
Graphically and commentary wise, ok, its not much differnet, but at the end of the day I did'nt buy this game for either of those reasons, I bought it for the gameplay which I personally believe is outstanding. Free kicks are much improved and be a lot more careful about giving the opposition a free kick any where near the edge of the box. 360 definitely improves the gameplay and the manager mode is significantly improved. Online seems great so far, find it easier to get a game and no lag at all I have noticed.
Conclusion. probably the best, most accurate football sim ever made, so true football fans, enjoy !
Batman: Arkham Asylum
8 New from
This game has an excellent tale and a real feel of authenticity which is sadly missing from most superhero games.
At first Arkham Island does feel rather restrictive but as the game unfolds there is much more to the island than meets the eye. The island is littered with areas to use your gadgets and the vertical nature is not ignored in the level designs.
Visually the game is gritty and the characters movements are very fluid. Again, the voice production is top notch and the ambience of the game is near perfect. There is lots of backround noise, enemy and freindly conversations which all add to the game. (Reminds me of bioshock in many ways)
The combat system does seem a bit button mashing at first but you soon realise the system rewards timed attacks and counters. With a bit of practice you will be performing some great combos and this means more XP and more heath regeneration.
As you would expect there is also a significant stealth portion of the game and there are many ways to silently take down the jokers henchmen. My personal favorite is the inverted takedown so I would definitely make this your first upgrade. There is also an added element of a detective mode which will point out things of interest or clues to follow trails. Although fairly simple they do work well in terms of the plot.
As well as the main plot there are also the riddlers challenges, most of these you will probably overlook as you progress through the campaign and although I have not completed this game yet I already feel there will be large amount of re-play value as I have the feeling some of these will be quite interesting and tricky to solve.
All in all this is probably going to be right up there as on of the best games released this summer. Top notch.
The Da Vinci Code
2 New from
Really enjoyed this.
Its a good book despite what monkeydave says below. Personally, i think anyone with half a brain knows that a lot of the assumptions made by dan brown are quantum leaps from the historical facts.
It is only fair however to point out that there are a lot of facts in this book that are actually correct. If like me you don't take everything you read at face value and try to understand issues from a variety of sources (not just a fictional novel) then just take this book for what it is which, lets face it, is an engrossing read.
Ashes Cricket 2009
4 New from
This a very good effort and definitely the best cricket game I have played.
I started with a few of the tutorials which teach you the basics of batting, bowling and fielding and set you up ready head straight into a match.
At first there is quite a bit to try and remember but after about 10-15 mins you soon get used to the intuitive control system and the game flows really nicely.
The batting is much better than Brian Lara in my opinion as I have found it much more accurate when aiming to pick out gaps in the field. Manually playing shots off the front and back foot (rather than just playing a shot and leaving the computer to do this for you) makes this feel much more range of accuracy depends on the skillset of the batsman you are using.
Bowling is also good although I would say even when you hit the exact mark for a perfect bowl you do get hit for four a little more often than I would have liked. Now this may be that I am bowling at the wrong length but I did go back to advanced bowling tutorial to try and work out if I was doing anything wrong but could'nt really see that I was. Also, I didnt really find the cutters very effective for taking wickets, and personally, I have so far found the spin bowlers much more useful than the pace bowlers.
The hardest element of the game is probably the catching. If like me you skip the fielding tutorial I can pretty much guarantee you will drop your first two or three catches. lol. Depending on the fielding position you can have a very small window to hit the x button to succesfully make the catch. I would say this is realistic though, as the ball would naturally come to you quicker in the slips for instance.
Graphically, I would not say the game is in the same league as say Madden or FIFA and some of the player likeness are questionable at best. The crowd also looks pretty standard, almost 2D if im being honest but when you are actually bowling and batting looking at it from a lofted position they are more than adequate and the gameplay more than makes up for any graphical issues.
Commentry is pretty good, but I have found some of the background chitter chatter you can hear from the crowd can become a little annoying and repetetive.
Overall a definite 4 star game and certainly a purchase for any cricket fans.
Logitech G25 Racing Wheel And Pedals (PC / PS2 / PS3)
I will start by saying I have had a couple of other wheels in the past and they do not even come close to this.The wheel itself is rock solid and the leather an aluminuim materials real make it feel the business. It will mount solidly to any flat liped surface. The pedels feel great and the resistance levels for each are bob on with the accelerator accurately lighter than the break pedel. Again these are weighty and have carpet grippers so there is no danger of them slipping away from you. The only slight down side, as previous reviews have mentioned, is the gear shifter which does'nt seem to have quite the same build quality as the rest of the unit. That said, it does work perfectly and it doesnt cause any issues I have noticed thus far.So far I have used this on Formula 1, Grid and GT Prologue. Of the three the handling feels most accurate with GT prologue and you can use the full 900 degree rotation. On other games like F1 where this is not needed it simply sets itself to use 200 degrees only. You will also have to use the flappy paddle gearbox rather than the gearstick for this as well as with F1 there are 7 gears to contend with.All in all I would say for the price of £99 which I managed to get this for with the offer code I can safely say there is nothing else currently in the market place that compares.....dont believe me? Still think it is not worth the money? Just type in G25 and drifting on you tube and have a look for yourself.
4 New from
Ok, the graphics arent the greatest and don't really show the PS3 capabilities but the story line is very good and the world itself is very unique. Its defintely better than your average shooter as you can craft some really unique ways to kill enemies....and there needs to be. If you like games with unlimited ammo clips lying around then this may not be for you, if like me you prefer a little more of a challenge then you can't go far wrong with this at such a great price as well.With Bioshock 2 to hit the shelves this year its worht playing just to get a background on the story line as I am expecting good things.
Killzone 2 (PS3)
14 New from
As we know the original Killzone failed to make much of an impact. Originally hyped as a Halo-Killer it turned out to be nothing more than a mediocre FPS and actually not as good as games like Turok or red Faction much less the beast that was Halo. The biggest reason people loved the original killzone, myself included was the deeply satisfying multiplayer.Now onto Killzone 2 and I can safetly say the developers have put some blood, sweat and tears into this and started from the ground up.The post-apocolyptic world itself is in amazing detail and you really should believe the hype on the graphics for this game. It hammers home that this is a gritty, death ridden world.The game does an excellent job of immersing you in this hostile world. This is partly due to the, quite frankly, best AI I have experienced on any FPS to date and partly due to how well the game maintains this gloomey ambience throughout all the missions but at the same time forcing you through a rich variety of environments. You just dont get that deja-vu feeling as you run through similar levels that other games have (Gears of War for instance). i wont go into too much detail but there are some really goood scenarios during the game that break up any manotony of killing enemies that same way all the time.In terms of the combat this isnt a game you can just rush into the enemy hordes with guns blazing. It need to constantly be looking for cover and using the cover system to soak up the enemy bullets as you move from one shootout to the next.Multiplayer is also very good indeed and there is a lot of incentive to get stuck into this with the rewards system and if like some you are loath to getting creamed by 12 year old american kids you can also just play locally with your mates and use bots to populate the maps which is good.Ok, why not 5 stars. Two reasons. Firstly, there ARE framerate issues when the game is loading another area and quite simply its annoying. Secondly, the control system is no where near as bad as some people have said in these reviews and most issues you will have can be sorted by simply messing with the different control set-ups and sensitivity to suit your style. That said, I do sometimes find it a little frustrating aiming at targets that are at a distance. It can be frustrating unless you have a sniper rifle and for those (like myself) that have become accustomed to the precise aiming of the COD series.Ultimately this is still a must have title and these slight drawbacks should not overshadow what this game has got right, and thats a lot.