June 28, 2011
Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D is a remake of the original game which was released on the N64 in 1998. Many consider the N64 version to be one of the best games of all time. This game was the first in the Zelda series to be a 3D polygon world and it was also the first game that introduced the left trigger targeting system, which has since been used by everything from third person actions games to role playing games.
So What’s Different?
One of the major differences is the actual graphics themselves. The Nintendo 3DS version isn’t just a simple port of the N64, but more of a repainting. The game’s visuals have been completely revamped by Japanese developer Grezzo, but the game has kept the same gameplay engine. Grezzo’s intention was to try and make the game look like the original concept art rather than to make it look like Zelda Twilight Princess.Continue reading »
June 27, 2011
The Electronic Entertainment Expo (otherwise known as E3) is a strange and fantastical beast of a convention. Large companies forgo their everyday suits and shareholder meetings to install fully-fledged stylised buildings within Los Angeles convention centre’s great halls, complete with multiple floors, ventilation, windows, backrooms and theatres.
These strange architectures are then rammed with PR trying to sell games they understand little of, developers nervous and agitated at the prospect of doing hundreds of almost identical interviews and ‘booth babes’ clueless as to what’s going on at all. And thus a literal gaming city is erected for the sole purpose of hype; most of it we see, some of it, such as the all together more business-like buyer meetings and VIP rooms, we don’t.
This year’s E3 closed its doors to 46800 attendees, with what I imagine were very varied opinions, even more so than most previous years like E3 2010. Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo, the console companies, are usually the hot topics at E3, yet despite the Wii U’s reveal and an explosion of details concerning the PS Vita, the third party developers seem to have been the show’s natural focus, whether the big three liked it or not. Whether this speaks to the quality of the games or the hardware developers’ shortcomings is for you to decide.Continue reading »
June 22, 2011
It’s been a while since Deus Ex was first released. 11 years in fact, and I never actually played the original but I did hear that it’s quite an impressive game. Well now the long awaited action-RPG sequel is upon us which has pricked up my ears and made me pay attention. Just see what we thought of it when we were at E3 2011 in our Day 2 review.
From what I’ve seen of Deus Ex: Human Revolution so far, I’ve been quite impressed and I’m looking forward to seeing some more of the gameplay footage. The story follows an ex-SWAT specialist named Adam Jensen in the year 2027 who is hired to defend a biotech firm in America. Jensen is then badly injured during an attack on the biotech facility and is augmented with cybernetic technology against his will. Jensen then travels the globe trying to unravel to truth to a major conspiracy and not knowing who to trust.Continue reading »
June 11, 2011
Once again E3 attendees lined up as we did in previous days and once again lines gave way to pandemonium as the doors opened up for the final day of E3. I myself took the time to make sure I’d seen every thing I wanted to, and of course, to take in the generally insane atmosphere.
Metal Gear Solid Peacewalker HD
Though there’s virtually nothing new here in terms of game content, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to see how these classic games held up on they’re newfound platforms.
Peacewalker HD, part of the Metal Gear Solid collection coming to the PS3 later this year is an exciting prospect for me, as I decided against playing its PSP iteration due to my disgust of the single analogue control system.Continue reading »
June 9, 2011
As soon as I awoke this Wednesday to an uncharacteristically cloudy LA day, I had but one priority: to get my hands on the still very oddly named Wii U, as well as the portable powerhouse that is the Playstation Vita. So that’s exactly what I did once the show floor opened to a now very purposeful, hot and busy press.
As you might imagine, there are quite a few people looking to test out the new console, some important, such as company VPs and industry-hopping celebrities, and some not so. This meant a long wait and short play with the device, but I feel I was able to get a good impression, given the lack of software (and any games at all). The controller itself is around the size of an A5 piece of paper and is cast in the signature shiny white plastic of Nintendo.
The screen does feel unnaturally large for the device it is, but it is sharp and clear, despite not quite being able to put out 1080p. The bottom feels fine, with a ridge that houses the triggers and accommodates your fingers relatively comfortably, but the top is where the problems unfortunately arise.Continue reading »
June 8, 2011
Nintendo Press Conference
Nintendo kicked off the day with a conference that left many people confounded. I’m still not sure what to make of it myself, but nonetheless, we’ll try to make sense of the festivities. Project Café is dead, long live Wii U. The naming conventions continue to defy logic and suggest that this iteration isn’t in fact, a whole new console – which it actually is.
The Wii U features a 6.2-inch touch screen controller, as rumoured, complete with mic, camera and gyro sensor. It will be able to run 1080p, is backwards compatible (nudge, nudge Sony) and will allow for multiscreen play with the TV.Continue reading »
June 7, 2011
Well E3 is well and truly here, and on the day before the show floor opens up to a hungry press, two of the console companies along with EA and Ubisoft held press conferences to demonstrate their latest and (hopefully) greatest, and of course, to brag about games/consoles sold.
Microsoft Press Conference
First up, bright and early at 9:30 was Microsoft’s presser and their emphasis was as clear as day: lots of Xbox Kinect, much like last year. Aside from a few demos of intriguing, moan and groan filled Tomb Raider, from Crystal Dynamics, an utterly predictable dose of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, a demo of Gears of War 3 with Cliffy B and the ever enthusiastic Ice T and a few somewhat inevitable Halo announcements, the bulk of the show was given over to Kinect.
Core titles such as Mass Effect 3 were shown to utilise voice commands of the Kinect, to select dialogue and instruct your squad, along with Ghost Recon: Future Soldier, which demo’ed an insanely detailed weapon customisation system.Continue reading »
June 3, 2011
Gameloft is a company best known for its mobile titles, developed for iOS and Android smartphones, but since the introduction of the Mac App Store in the new year, the firm has widened its horizons to include development for the Mac.
One of the Mac titles released by Gameloft is Modern Combat Domination: a Counter-Strike-esque first person multiplayer shooter that allows you to play online in a multitude of modes and increase your level as you become more proficient at the game. Originally released for the Playstation 3 via PSN, Modern Combat comes with a low price tag to attract even the most casual of gamers, but is this a case of getting what you pay for, or can Gameloft’s latest title match up to the big games in the App Store? Let’s check it out!Continue reading »
June 1, 2011
L.A. Noire. The game that promised so much, the hype almost became unbearable, and the wait even more so. Having pre-ordered the game a couple of months back, May 20th just couldn’t come fast enough for me and as I scampered home on that bright spring afternoon, carefully peeled away Amazon’s stress-free packaging, and with bated breath waited for the seemingly eternal installation. There was only one question on my mind: How good will it be, being the good guy?
This is new territory for Rockstar, with previous esteemed titles such as GTA and Red Dead Redemption providing hour upon hour of sometimes hilarious criminal escapades and proving so popular, it’s certainly a bold step to adopt the same system with a complete role reversal. The problem is for me, that whilst street shoot-outs, car/horse-jackings and driving motorcycles from the top of the empire state building is unquestionably entertaining in the aforementioned titles, sprinting through the streets of LA armed with not a lot more than a pencil and a little black book isn’t quite so enthralling.
But, what we’ve got with L.A. Noire is quite the mixed bag.Continue reading »
May 30, 2011
Yet another first-person shooter (FPS) game hits our shelves. It seems to be that the majority of big titles released these days are FPS, with none of them really standing alone with something slightly different to make it stand out from the rest. But does Brink break that mould and bring us something new?
Most FPS games allow you to be pretty much a solo player, running around and doing your own thing, killing anyone that stands in your way. There’s been plenty of times when I’ve single handedly won a Deathmatch on Call of Duty doubling my entire teams score (I’ve also been on the other side) as you can work individually. This isn’t the case with Brink however, as it’s vital that you work as a team to achieve your goal, otherwise you’ll find it rather tricky to achieve any objectives.Continue reading »
May 17, 2011
Back in July of last year Steelseries announced two headsets specifically designed for Xbox 360 gaming: the Spectrum 5xb and 4xb, and over the last couple of weeks we’ve had our hands on the former of these to see how well it matches up not only to the pretty good pedigree that Steelseries have created for themselves but also against the competition.
The SteelSeries Spectrum 5xB Gaming Headset is their first (or more correctly, the better of their first two) headsets specifically designed for gaming on the Xbox 360 which means that not only do they come with the usual headset paraphernalia but also a neat little box that allows you to adjust the audio from your Xbox to ‘optimise your gaming experience’.Continue reading »
May 1, 2011
We all knew that this would be announced one day, even if it has taken longer for news of Wii 2 to arrive, well now Nintendo have officially come out with the announcement that the Wii 2 will be unveiled in June at E3 2011 with a release date of late 2012 and there’s now news and rumours appearing.
An official name is yet to be released for Wii’s successor, but it currently has a working title of Project Cafe and there are rumours of the console being called ‘Stream’.Continue reading »
May 1, 2011
Everyone is well aware of the recent PSN hack that has caused Sony no ends of problems, not to mention the 77 million PSN users whose details have been stolen. It’s been two weeks since the hack and still the PSN is down, infuriating gamers still. But Sony have released some details of their ‘Welcome Back’ offer to all registered PSN users.
Every user of PSN will get a free month subscription of Playstation Plus, including those who are already signed up to the service. On top of that, users will be receiving some free “entertainment content” which is going to be different for each region, but no details have emerged as yet as to what each region will get.Continue reading »
April 27, 2011
Back when Steam was finally released on the Mac, many users (myself included) got their first taste of the original physics-based puzzle game: Portal. It was unique in so many ways and earned rave reviews from even the most critical of judges thanks to it’s relaxing, yet challenging tests; humerous, yet at time frustratingly difficult characters; and altogether brilliant storyline, gameplay and visuals.
However, one criticism of the original though, was its length. It really was a game that could be completed in just a couple of hours, and that grinds with many people who were left wanting more of such a potentially classic title.Continue reading »
April 19, 2011
When Steam for Mac arrived last year, Valve decided to hand out free copies of Portal to anyone who registered on a Mac. It was then that I got my first serious taste of Portal, having only seen demos in the past, and it had me at hello. The original Portal was an outstanding physics-based puzzle game unlike any other, and now the successor has finally arrived: Portal 2.
The game is available on Steam for £29.99, though if you were on the ball and pre-ordered you could have saved yourself a few quid. Thankfully, I ordered mine last night and pre-loaded the game files in an unreachable encrypted state, and it was delivered playable to my computer early this morning upon release.Continue reading »
April 8, 2011
Everyone likes a bit of Sonic the Hedgehog and most gamers will have played the original Sonic either on the Mega Drive or when it was re-released on PSN and XBLA. Well this year Sonic turns 20, which makes me feel pretty old but we’ve been given a little treat.
As I’m a fan of Sonic, of course I ‘liked’ him on Facebook and the other day a teaser trailer was released showing a snippet of what’s to come in Sonics next big outing. But it wasn’t until the 32 second that I really took notice. Why?
Well Sonic was just running along a typical Sonic landscape as he does, then all of a sudden there’re two Sonics. The recent looking blue hedgehog and an old skool looking one.Continue reading »
April 4, 2011
Because I was born in the eighties, I’ve always loved Ghostbusters. I was too young to see the first film at the cinema, but did manage to see the second film on the big screen as well as watching the cartoons. You can see from my review of Ghostbusters: The Video Game that I was impressed with the game, so I was hoping for something to match it. The game starts, the eerie Ghostbusters theme tune kicks in…but that’s where the fun stops. Unfortunately Sanctum of Slime falls short.
The story follows on from Ghostbusters 2 with Janosz Poha being sent to the nut house after his possession by Vigo, and in there he meets another minion to a wanna-be God. He then gets duped into collecting a stone for the bad guy. So in come the Ghostbusters to save the day.
The time then moves forward to the present day, but it’s not the original Ghostbusters this time around as they’re too old and tired with all the ghost catching they’re having to do. So they take on a group of rookies to help out, one of which is the nephew of Janosz Poha.Continue reading »
March 31, 2011
The long awaited Nintendo 3DS is finally here and it would be a shame not to say something. I’ve held every Nintendo console in my hands and rushed to the store to procure the latest member of my little family.
Upon gently removing the new babe from its container I was quite pleased, the blue (I obtained the Aqua version) varies on different parts of the console and sparkles in the light just enough to distract me in a wonderful way.Continue reading »
March 29, 2011
When I was asked this question it did make me think. I don’t have a definite answer to this, as with me it all depends on the game. Before trophies and achievements were unleashed to the world, which gave games more longevity, I was quite content with just playing a game and enjoying it. Games like Jak and Daxter, Ratchet and Clank on the PS2 were just a couple of games where I could just sit and enjoy them for what they were.
Whereas games like Final Fantasy are at times a hard slog, and required you to put in around 30 hours minimum to complete. You’ve got side quests, extra weapons and spells to find etc and some people really enjoy doing this. But I prefer to get to the end of the story, and then move onto the next game.Continue reading »
March 26, 2011
Zath spent an evening at the Imagination Gallery in London last week, courtesy of THQ. The occasion? The launch of their new Wii peripheral; the uDraw Tablet.
As you might expect, the uDraw is a drawing tablet for the Nintendo Wii, aimed squarely at children. At 9″x7″x1.5″ (approx 23x18x4cm) it’s big to draw on comfortably in your lap while still being portable. It’s also wireless, hooked up to the Wii by plugging in a standard Wii Remote.
The docking space for the remote fits snugly, with enough space around to keep those connecting cables nicely tucked away. The tablet itself is powered by the Wii Remote’s batteries so there’s no need to worry on that account.Continue reading »