Category Archives: Action

God of War: Chains of Olympus (Review)

God of War: Chains of Olympus is a real slap in the face to other developers trying to wrangle a half-decent looking game out of the PSP. One look at these screens is enough to show that Ready at Dawn have an understanding of the PSP that nobody else is even close to obtaining. On top of that they’ve kept the God of War brand in great condition while Sony Santa Monica press on with God of War III.

This game is a prequel to the original PS2 title where Kratos is still on the Olympian’s payroll. The tale begins with Kratos taking on an invading Persian army before the true enemy, Morpheus is revealed. The gods believe Morpheus to be behind the recent disappearance of Helios, the Sun god. If Morpheus is not defeated soon, it may be the end of the gods.

Continue reading God of War: Chains of Olympus (Review)

Vanquish (Review)

Vanquish is the latest effort from Platinum Games, the minds behind Bayonetta. This time they’re looking to put a boot up the backside of the third-person cover-shooter genre. How? By combining rocket boosting, bullet-time and cover-shootouts that’s how.

The story is nothing more than a vague excuse for the fantastic setting on an orbital colony built on a looping surface with lots of bots and giant mechs to blast apart. It’s the future and a Russian rebel group are trying to take over the world (but in space). Just go with it. Continue reading Vanquish (Review)

Enslaved: Odyssey to the West (PS3 Review)

This adaptation of an old Chinese novel has been written by Alex ’28 Days Later’ Garland and Tameen Antoniades. Set 150 years into the future, many wars have taken place and the human race is almost nothing than a memory to the wastelands. People are outnumbered by the mechs; leftover robots from a forgotten war, still running the same programmes of kill anyone that they come across.

You play as the brutish Monkey who is forced to escort the slender young woman Trip back to her home after they escape from a slaver ship.  He’s forced because she slipped a slave headband on him that forces him to obey her and comes with the other downside of killing him if her heart stops beating. Continue reading Enslaved: Odyssey to the West (PS3 Review)

Kung Fu Rider (Review)

Well that didn’t take long. On the same day PlayStation Move arrives and impresses with a mighty 9/10 score for Sports Champions, we get our first stinker for the motion control device.

The concept is sound for a game idea, if not a little barmy. You slide down busy Hong Kong-esque streets on an office chair, baby seat or some other inappropriate device, aiming to get to the escape van at the bottom of the hill, while collecting cash and points along the way by kicking Yakuza thugs and performing tricks. If you can remember Tony Hawk’s Downhill Jam, you’re in the right ball park. Continue reading Kung Fu Rider (Review)

Car Jack Streets (PSP Minis Review)

It’s been a while since I’ve dusted of my old PS1 GTA games, so will this be a nostalgic experience or a grim reminder of why some titles are best left in the past?

The top-down view in the crime-sim raises obvious comparisons with the old GTA games, but for a £3.49 PSP Minis title it definitely has my attention. Continue reading Car Jack Streets (PSP Minis Review)

Alpha Protocol (Review)

‘What a difference a few extra months in development makes,’ was what we all thought when Arkham Asylum finally arrived. With an even bigger delay preceding the eventual arrival of Obsidian’s Spy RPG many gamers started to worry about the condition of the nevertheless eagerly awaited title.

The idea of being able to actively affect the story with your own choices in conversations and via your actions had minds swimming with possibilities of combining gameplay styles of the legendary JB trio of James Bond, Jason Bourne and Jack Bauer. Continue reading Alpha Protocol (Review)

Iron Man 2 (PS3 Review)

It might have the Iron Man 2 movie poster for the front cover, but this is pretty far removed from the film, with only Iron Man, War Machine and Nick Fury putting in a decent day’s work. At least their movie-counterparts faces and voices have made it in.

The game takes place ‘beyond’ the movie with the Russians stealing some tech from Stark Industries to make their own robot armies and so on. Players have the choice of playing as Iron Man or War Machine which is a nice touch, but the lack of a two-player option feels like a missed opportunity. You can at least change character at the start of each mission. Continue reading Iron Man 2 (PS3 Review)

God of War III (Review)

Kratos and God of War III have patiently sat atop Mount Olympus watching the likes of Bayonetta, Darksiders and Dante’s Inferno clamber their way upwards in their efforts to usurp him. He’s let them get tantalisingly close, before stirring and smiting them from the mountain in amused rage at their audacity.

The end of the trilogy begins where GOWII ended, with Kratos clambering up Mount Olympus with his new Titan buddies for the climactic war to kill Zeus and any gods that cross his path. There’s seemingly nowhere for the Olympians to hide anymore seeing as he’s dispatched pretty much every mythological monster they’ve thrown at him already. Continue reading God of War III (Review)

Yakuza 3 (Review)

How to describe Yakuza 3? Well it’s an RPG beat ‘em up stuffed with a huge variety of mini-games to distract you from the games story that involve multiple Yakuza gangs and government conspiracies in Tokyo and Okinawa. Oh and you look after an orphanage too.

Players new to the series are welcomed by detailed compilations of cutscenes from the first two games that make a decent effort of bringing you up to speed. Long story short, Kazuma (that’s you) climbed the ranks to become the 4th Chairman of the Tojo Clan of the Yakuza, didn’t fancy it and went to start an orphanage on the Japanese island of Okinawa. Continue reading Yakuza 3 (Review)

Way of the Samurai 3 (Review)

Set in Feudal Japan you star as an injured Samurai, regaining consciousness on a battlefield surrounded by corpses of other warriors after a bloody battle. From here on in you get to decide how to shape the story in this sedately paced Samurai-sim.

The series, which started on PS2, has always prided itself on the amount of choice it provided to gamers with multiple endings being a key selling point. This time there are over twenty of them.  Players are allowed a degree of freedom in shaping their adventure by selecting from multiple dialogue options, usually based around being nice or nasty. Continue reading Way of the Samurai 3 (Review)

Stop Stress: A Day of Fury (WiiWare Review)

The ‘Day of Fury’ part of the title probably gave it away, but this isn’t part of the Wii Fit-style wave of games. So there’ll be no breathing games or dragging out the balance board, instead it’s good old-fashioned hit-things-with-a-stick gameplay.

Everything in the game seems to be enraging your guy, so in order to keep his stress levels (like a health bar) down you need to smash everything up and occasionally calm yourself down by finding money or a brew. Continue reading Stop Stress: A Day of Fury (WiiWare Review)

Bayonetta (Review)

With no new Devil May Cry anytime soon, Kratos and God of War III probably thought they’d own 2010. Yet he’s having to face off a triple offensive of Darksiders, Bayonetta and Dante’s Inferno, one after another. Out of the three, original Devil May Cry director Hideki Kamiya has changed tactics the most by sending the sassy temptress Bayonetta in instead of yet another angry man. Hoping to charm her way in, before going berserk in a way we forgot Japanese games used to do. Continue reading Bayonetta (Review)

Darksiders (Review)

The hack n’ slash genre is back in force this year with the first quarter playing host to Bayonetta, Dante’s Inferno and God of War III. Amidst the hype of these three big names Vigil Games have been pretty quiet promoting their effort Darksiders. Turns out keeping their heads down and getting on with it has paid off as we have our first surprise of the year. Continue reading Darksiders (Review)

The Saboteur (Review)

You are Sean Devlin, an Irish racing car driver who becomes The Saboteur on his road to revenge against the Nazis. While the visuals are painfully average and the open-world gameplay offers nothing new, you might just get find yourself sucked right in anyway with fun gun battles and the optional stealth approach.

A neatly condensed Paris and its nearby countryside make up the landscape of the game. You help out members of the French resistance and British spies to help liberate Paris and send the Germans scurrying back to sausage country. Continue reading The Saboteur (Review)

Ratchet and Clank: A Crack in Time (Review)

Insomniac live up to their name once again by providing another Ratchet and Clank game that’ll keep you playing long into the night. The only problem facing the series is the lack of competition to keep it on its toes. Nevertheless this is still an awesome addition to the series.

Following on from the end of Tools of Destruction and Quest for Booty, Ratchet is still looking for his robotic side-kick, Clank, who has been kidnapped by the returning nut-job, Dr. Nefarious who wants to use Clank to gain access to the Great Clock that controls all time in the universe. So yeah, there’s a fair bit going on, but there’s a quick summary at the start of the game to refresh your memory and ease in newcomers (welcome by the way). Continue reading Ratchet and Clank: A Crack in Time (Review)

Brutal Legend (Review)

Eddie Riggs (voiced by Jack Black) is the best roadie in the business, but modern times have seen him forced to work with some awful bands as he’s seen his beloved heavy metal get watered down to suit a ‘tween demographic’. After saving one of the dipshit band members from certain death onstage, Rigg’s huge stage set collapses on him. As his blood drips into his Motorhead-esque belt buckle a metal monster erupts from the stage wasting the band, and Riggs is transported to a whole new dimension. It’s got the crazy turned up to 11 all the way from here on in. Continue reading Brutal Legend (Review)

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves (Review)

The team at Naughty Dog and Nathan Drake may just have saved the day for the PS3. The console has had plenty of great games, but many doubters still thought it was missing its ‘killer app’, a true system seller. No longer.

No other game tries so hard to entertain and excite you. Uncharted 2: Among Thieves is a constant barrage of ‘Wow!’ moments, one after another, just wiping out previous favourites with each spectacle. In just under ten hours the likes of Uncharted 1, Gears of War, Tomb Raider, Arkham Asylum, and God of War become just a footnote in gaming’s distant past. Continue reading Uncharted 2: Among Thieves (Review)

Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 (Review)

Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 arrives with memories of its predecessor filling most gamers’ hearts with a self-doubting terror from being made to feel utterly rubbish at games and having to call it a day by the time the motorbike ninjas arrived. Only the old school, challenge hungry, were really up for that madness.

Don’t worry if the first one handed your ass to you on a plate though as the sequel is much more accessible. That doesn’t mean you can happy slap it into submission, but you’ll probably make it half way and maybe even whisper it… finish it.

Continue reading Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 (Review)

Wet (Review)

Rubi: a hired gun, thief, errant son deliverer, car roof surfer, the works, with no questions asked. Along as said ‘Wet work’ involves shooting in slow-motion, wall-running, diving, sliding around on her knees (stop it) and stabbing things a lot. Gameplay wise it’s PS2-era Prince of Persia meets Stranglehold.

Style points earned from racking up combos of kills in slow-motion or with the sword can be used to upgrade Rubi and her weapons with extra health and moves or for extra damage, ammo and faster rates of fire. If you played the demo and felt a bit under whelmed it’s a pleasure to say that the full game does feel a lot better once you’ve got some upgrades under your belt. Continue reading Wet (Review)

Batman: Arkham Asylum (Review)

What is it that makes the world of Batman so cool? Costume? Detective skills? Unmatchable martial arts? His gadgets? The ability to strike terror into the hearts of criminals? The setting? The sheer madness of his foes?

It’s all of this and developers Rocksteady Games know it, and have shown the best understanding of the Dark Knight yet.

Story
The story begins with Batman delivering a gibbering Joker to Arkham Asylum. Only problem is that it seems he gave himself up way too easily. Like Michael Schofield in Prison Break, the Joker has a hidden agenda in getting locked up (ok, what he wants to do inside is slightly different). He manages to escape the useless Arkham guards before they’ve even put him in his cell, with a little help from the ever-doting Harley Quinn (brilliantly acted). So it’s up to you to chase after the Clown Prince while he leaves a trail of released psychopaths and familiar villains. Continue reading Batman: Arkham Asylum (Review)