Showing posts with label reviews. Show all posts
Showing posts with label reviews. Show all posts

Wednesday, April 25, 2018


MARVEL STUDIOS' AVENGERS INFINITY WAR MOVIE REVIEW - IT'S TIME! You have seen us do our trailer reactions to trailers 1, 2, 3, the final trailer, movie clips, etc. for Avengers Infinity War but now the time has finally come where we must give our reviews for the film, and this is something we've been waiting years and years to come! Was all this hype and all the build up worth it? Find out tonight in this funny video, and our epic Avengers Infinity War movie review!
And for more funny videos like this one head on over to for funny movie reviews and movie trailer reactions to official trailers of 2017 and 2018 livestreamed for your viewing pleasure all throughout the week:

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Double Toasted Reviews "I FEEL PRETTY"

I FEEL PRETTY MOVIE REVIEW (Starring Amy Schumer) - Amy Schumer is back and she brings along Emily Ratajkowski as the double toasted podcast review I Feel Pretty! Will this be as good as Amy Schumer's stand up? Although her stand-up comedy is not the best, we can't see this being unable to compare after seeing the trailer. Find out in this funny video and let us know in the comments below your thoughts on the film, and if you feel pretty.

And for more funny videos by the Double Toasted podcast, head on over to for funny movie reviews and movie trailer reactions to official trailers of 2017 and 2018 livestreamed for your viewing pleasure all throughout the week!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Games on the AVE: Gamespot reviews Call of Duty: Black Ops 2

Available for Xbox 360, PS3, and WiiU

Jetpacks with rigid wings. Gloves that can adhere to any surface and support your body weight. Advertisements that feature your face when you walk by. The campaign in Call of Duty: Black Ops II has some interesting ideas about the future of technology, but what about the future of this massively popular shooter series? On the one hand, Black Ops II introduces new mission types and dramatic decision points that liven up the campaign, as well as a league play option that represents a fundamental shift in the franchise's hallowed multiplayer mode. On the other hand, the campaign hits the same satisfying rhythms, the multiplayer captures the same frenetic intensity, and the cooperative zombies mode delivers the same stale undead-massacring action. Caught between striving for the future and remaining rooted in the past, Black Ops II finds solid footing, providing another great ride on the Call of Duty rollercoaster.
The ride starts off a bit rough as Black Ops II makes good on its pre-campaign warning of graphic content. Two early scenes linger on people burning alive, and while one ends up contributing to character development, the other is just gratuitous. Later cutscenes don't flinch from depicting gory violence, though of all the unpleasant sights you see throughout the story, the playful (and not at all gory) post-credits video might be the most appalling.
Fortunately, the campaign boasts an engaging story and a lot of entertaining action. It features the lead characters from the original Call of Duty: Black Ops, and though it references events from the past, a clear narrative thread emerges that is easy to follow. You jump between two time periods: the present, which is the year 2025, and the past, which spans about a decade during the Cold War. The narrative reflections of the elderly Frank Woods (a protagonist from Black Ops) weave these two timelines together, but the character that truly drives the story is the villain, Raul Menendez. During the Cold War missions, you follow Menendez's origin story and rise to power. In the 2025 missions, you desperately try to avert his catastrophic master plan. This parallel character development is deftly handled, infusing your missions with undercurrents of curiosity and urgency.
Things get even more intense when you are asked to make a choice. Press one button to kill a target, the other to let him live. The conditions of each choice vary and there are only a few of them, but even when you aren't responding to a prompt, you might be making a choice in a dramatic moment that will have consequences later. The main course of the campaign remains constant, but these decisions do affect the fate of some key characters. A few of these moments are sure to give you pause, adding some welcome weight to the proceedings, and there's a handy story rewind feature that lets you play earlier levels in order to see how different paths play out. There are also mission-specific challenges that give you ancillary goals to complete while you do so, further increasing the replay incentive.
You can also see some variance in the available strike missions, which are a new type of campaign level. These stages put you in a squad of soldiers and drones, and then let you choose which asset to control at any given time. Defending installations against enemy assault, escorting a convoy, and rescuing a hostage are some of the endeavors you might undertake. Though you have a team at your command, strike missions are still all about you gunning down foes. Your AI allies are only good at slightly hindering your enemies, so you end up doing the heavy lifting yourself, often while tracking activity on multiple fronts and hopping around to deal with advancing enemies. Having to consider the bigger picture is a nice change of pace for a series that has mostly involved just shooting what's in front of you, and these missions are a welcome shot in the arm for the familiar campaign pacing.
Of course, familiar as it may be, that pacing is still great. The campaign ebbs and flows as you move through a variety of diverse, detailed environments using an array of powerful weaponry to dispatch your foes, occasionally hopping into a jet or on to a horse for a short jaunt, or manning a missile turret to tame a swarm of hostile drones. A few neat gadgets and surprising gameplay moments satisfy the novelty quotient, but you still get the lingering feeling that you've done this all before. The new strike missions, dramatic decision points, and memorable villain help keep this concern at bay, however, and this fiesty, enjoyable romp is more enticing to replay than other recent Call of Duty campaigns.
Black Ops II's competitive multiplayer has seen some changes as well, notably in the way you equip yourself before going into battle. The COD points system from Black Ops has been ditched in favor of a new token system that still affords you some control over the order in which you unlock new weapons and gear. The more interesting change is the new loadout system, which gives you ten points to play with and assigns a single point to every element of your loadout (guns, attachments, perks, lethal and tactical items). It offers a bit of flexibility if, say, you don't use a sidearm much but could really use an extra perk, and the new wild cards allow some limited creativity. Put one of these in your loadout, and you can go into battle with two well-equipped primary weapons, or you can load up on perks and bring just a knife and your wits.
The millimeter scanner sight comes in handy for spotting cloaked enemies.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Games on the AVE: Gamespot Reviews Assassin's Creed III

Also available on PS3

In some respects, Connor is a vessel for ideas more than a force of nature in his own right, though few heroes could hope to outshine the charming and worldly star of Assassin's Creed II, Ezio Auditore. Noah Watts' unsure voice acting keeps Connor at arm's length, emotionally--though in some respects, the distance is appropriate, given Connor's uncertain path through a complex political landscape. It's the time of the American Revolution, and Connor finds himself a key figure on and off the battlefield. He fires cannons, commands troops, and jams his tomahawk into loyalist flesh. He rides with the delightful Paul Revere and conspires with Samuel Adams, thus allowing you to participate in some of the time period's most renowned events: the Boston Tea Party, the Battle of Bunker Hill, and so forth. Assassin's Creed games are well known for their incredible attention to historical detail, and Assassin's Creed III is no exception. Major and minor figures are depicted; the cities of Boston and New York are exquisitely re-created; and even minutiae like the lines of The Beggar's Opera are presented with fine accuracy.
Who is Ratonhnhaké:ton? He's the son of a British father, raised by his Mohawk mother and caught in a struggle between his own people and the colonists spreading through the American Northeast. He's an assassin who, like those before him, believes in the people's right to be free and make their own choices. He's also known as Connor, and he stars in Assassin's Creed III, the most thematically rich game in this ambitious and freewheeling series. 
Yet Assassin's Creed III is less about history and more about the broader themes of the franchise. The Assassin vs. Templar conflict deepens here. You've heard the Templar point of view before, often via the soliloquies of dying men who pleaded the good intentions of a philosophy that nonetheless paved an apparent road to hell. Now, the truth, such as it is, isn't so cut-and-dried. You hear the sincere and convincing words of the men you've assumed represent the wrong side of morality, and must wonder: are the ideas of good and bad so absolute after all? Are the men you cradle in your arms as they gasp their dying breaths necessary casualties, or do they whisper ideas worth hearing and understanding? As one character insists, "There is no one path through life that's right or fair."
Of course, Connor's dilemma is one of the past; in the present day, series constant Desmond Miles plays his own role, making his legend by carving his way through the here and now. Connor fights for the rights of his people; Desmond holds the fate of the world in his hands. Assassin's Creed III draws important parallels between the two men, both of whom navigate a thorny relationship with an estranged father. Surprisingly, given the series' past, Desmond's story tugs at the heart, not because of his newfound relationship with his aloof father, but because he learns more of the First Civilization, and their futile attempts to ward off the disaster that annihilated them.
The Desmond portions are even more fleshed out than before, allowing the former bartender to at last exercise his own stealth, parkour, and assassination skills, hinting at the possibility of full-fledged modern-day adventuring--though never quite arriving there. There does come an important revelation, however: the typically surprising finale that leaves you scratching your head, and in this case, forces you to consider an unpleasant truth about the nature of humanity. The finale lacks punch and falls short of Assassin's Creed II's jaw-dropping conclusion. But the inconclusive ending is designed to have you guessing, and you will ponder the implications over and over, trying to weave a tapestry of truth out of the conspiracies that have always buoyed the series' self-serious stories.
It takes time to reach that conclusion, or indeed, to experience the parkour flights of fancy that represent Assassin's Creed III at its best. In fact, it takes time for you to even meet its hero, though it's better to discover just how the game handles that introduction on your own. Suffice it to say: the opening hours are unexpectedly protracted as you discover that this is, indeed, a different kind of Assassin's Creed. It's no less joyous, once the stops are ultimately pulled out, but the game takes its time, trusting you to be patient with a slow-paced prologue that is concerned more with establishing tone and backstory than with allowing you free rein of its bustling cities.

Games on the AVE: Gamespot Reviews Need for Speed: Most Wanted

Also available on Xbox 360

Vehicles glide along invisible roads in the sky. Cars are borne out of twitchy, twisty clouds of darkness. Groups of police cruisers perform coordinated donuts, twirling about like dancers in a Busby Berkeley musical. In the creative and unusual pre-race sequences throughout Need for Speed: Most Wanted, you get the sense that the city of Fairhaven is a surreal land with dreamlike logic that might allow anything to happen at any moment. It's striking, then, that the actual game here is so typical and unsurprising, and that although it delivers plenty of the hard-hitting, white-knuckle racing Criterion is known for, it doesn't do so quite as well as some of the studio's earlier games.
The first game Need for Speed: Most Wanted may make you think of isn't a Criterion game at all; it's Need for Speed Most Wanted, the 2005 game with almost the same name. But while both games take place in open-world cities and involve plenty of police chases, the similarities aren't as significant as you might expect. One of the earlier game's most memorable elements was its hilariously over-the-top tale, told using some cheesy cutscenes, of a newcomer to the city of Rockport who has a personal vendetta against local street racer Razor Callahan. The premise gave you a terrific motivation for rising through the ranks of Rockport's street racing scene and taking Razor down.
Here, you also have the goal of defeating a number of street racers, but there's no narrative to back it up. The 10 racers on your list are identified only by their cars--they don't have names or faces or personalities--and without a personal investment in defeating them, doing so isn't nearly as satisfying here as it was in the 2005 game. It is merely a structural hoop to jump through; you do it simply because the game tells you that this is what you are supposed to do.

Well, that and the fact that driving, racing, and eluding the police are really enjoyable, for the most part. If you've played Criterion's earlier Need for Speed game, 2010's Hot Pursuit, the handling here will feel immediately familiar. Despite the stable of real-world cars, the driving isn't realistic. Cars have a great sense of weight and momentum to them, while still being extremely responsive, and as you'd expect from a Criterion racer, judicious use of the brakes and a bit of practice will have you blissfully drifting through corners at high speed. Unexpectedly, cars don't start out with boost, but fear not; boosting is a big part of racing in Most Wanted. Each vehicle has five events associated with it, and by taking first place in the easiest of these, you unlock the burn nitrous mod for that car. This enables you to boost after you build up your nitrous bar by doing things like drifting, taking down cops and rivals, and driving in oncoming traffic. Victory in each of a vehicle's events nets you speed points, which you need to earn a set number of before you can challenge each of the most wanted racers. Winning events also gives you access to other mods, including chassis that make you more resistant to impacts, gears that increase your acceleration or top speed, and tires that reinflate if popped by spike strips

Monday, October 22, 2012

Games on the AVE: gamespot REVIEWS "Dishonored"

Also available on PC & PS3

Dishonored is a game about many things. It's about revenge; armed with deadly weapons and supernatural powers, you seek vengeance upon all of those who orchestrated your downfall. It's about a city; the plague-ridden industrial port of Dunwall is lovely to behold, exciting to explore, and seething with secrets. It's about people; an array of vibrant characters await you, and as you get to know them, you are drawn further into their intrigues, hopes, and heartbreaks. But above all, it's about choice. The incredible variety of ways you can engage or evade your enemies makes Dishonored impressively flexible and utterly captivating. You play as Corvo Attano, former bodyguard to the empress and current death row inmate. The prologue chronicling Corvo's crime not only inflames your desire for revenge, but also sparks your affection for a vulnerable character. These dual fires foreshadow the choice you have to make each time you encounter an enemy: do you walk the bloody path of brutal vengeance, or take the nonlethal high road and rise above the violence that suffuses the city? Your actions have small, yet tangible consequences throughout your quest, and it's up to you to decide what kind of retribution you want.

A cadre of conspirators helps you escape imprisonment, and you find out that they are plotting to bring down the very men who wronged you. These characters embody familiar archetypes--the dutiful admiral, the egotistical nobleman, the cheeky servant--but Dishonored is not content with one-dimensional portrayals. An excellent voice cast (which includes a number of notable actors) and stylish character design help bring these people to life. As you listen to them talk (you remain mute throughout), read their journals, eavesdrop on conversations, and learn whispered secrets from an arcane, psychic item you acquire, you come to know the characters and the world they live in. This kind of knowledge is engaging, so even when the main plot follows some well-trodden paths, you're always interested and eager to press on.
Exploring Dunwall is another one of Dishonored's great pleasures. The city prospered from the whaling trade in the recent past, but has fallen on hard times since the influx of a deadly plague. Brick walls and wooden beams loom over alleys crawling with rats, while granite facades and metal barricades block off the cobblestoned plazas of the wealthier neighborhoods. Dunwall evokes a British city in the grip of the industrial revolution, but painterly coloring and slightly exaggerated proportions give the place a unique feel. Though some texture details can be slow to load in the console versions, the lovely artistic design is undiminished, making Dunwall an immensely appealing place to inhabit.
Of course, there are tangible benefits to exploration as well. Sewers, alleys, apartments, and estates all hide items that restore your health, reinforce your arsenal, teach you secrets, or allow you to gain new supernatural powers. The large areas you must traverse to get to your targets are riddled with out-of-the-way places to explore, and finding them reveals not only hidden goodies, but alternate routes as well.
Figuring out how to move through the environments is an enjoyable pursuit, and one of the first powers you get allows you to teleport a short distance. The quick pop and blurry whoosh of this power provides a nice audiovisual accompaniment to the thrill of defying natural law, and if you choose to supernaturally augment your jumping ability, your range of locomotion is drastically increased. Though you'll likely have some awkward moments as you try to go places that the game won't let you, Dishonored's level design is consistent enough to make such moments easy to avoid once you get the hang of things.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Games on the AVE: Gamespot REVIEWS Dance Central 3

The Dance Central series has already established itself as the best dance franchise available. It's known for its gorgeous animations, wonderful dance routines that cater to a wide range of skill levels, and Kinect tracking that gets your whole body into the groove. And in these regards, Dance Central 3 maintains the excellence of its predecessors, leaving the basic gameplay untouched. You still perform a wide variety of fun dance moves in routines that are expertly choreographed to match the music that accompanies them. But it's the elements that surround the dancing that make this sequel a standout. An appropriately absurd Story mode and a diverse soundtrack that reaches back through time to work in hit records and dance crazes of the past few decades elevate the game. But it's the outrageous and frequently hilarious Party Time mode that takes this sequel over the top and makes it the best Dance Central yet.

Of course, dancing is still front and center. A new difficulty level, beginner, keeps routines simple and lets even those who may have been intimidated by the easy mode in earlier games enjoy strutting their stuff. On the other end of the spectrum, dances on hard difficulty are complex, challenging more experienced dancers to keep up with intricate, physically demanding routines. The dances are performed by an assortment of impossibly attractive, stylish characters--most of whom return from earlier games--and their smooth, graceful animations make even the simplest of moves look pretty cool.
As in earlier Dance Central games, cue cards scroll up along the side of the screen, indicating which moves are coming up in the current routine, and should your actions not quite match the dance move being performed, the corresponding limbs on the onscreen dancer become outlined in red. It's a gentle, effective way to inform you that your performance is a little off, but this may not be enough to help you understand what you're doing wrong.
Thankfully, the option to rehearse specific dance moves or entire songs is back, and as before, you can slow things down and master a move at half speed if you're struggling. A new addition to Rehearse mode makes it an even better tool for helping you identify aspects of a move you might be having trouble with. You can now have the Kinect show live footage of you dancing next to the in-game dancer performing the move, making any discrepancies between your actions and the character's more obvious.
The dance moves range from extremely simple steps that anyone can keep up with, to much more intricate moves that all but the most seasoned dancers may need to practice to master. Generally, the Kinect's tracking of your moves is precise, though you can usually fudge any subtle hand movements involved in a dance step and still earn a rating of flawless. New in Dance Central 3 are a number of dance crazes from the past few decades, which consist of a few dance steps in a specific sequence.
When dancing to "The Hustle," a few dance moves come together to form the titular '70s dance craze. Similarly, when dancing to "Macarena," you need to put your pride aside, move your arms, and wiggle your booty to do the goofy dance that was inescapable for a brief period in the mid-'90s. (If doing the Hustle or the Macarena sounds too easy to you, don't worry. On harder difficulties, these crazes are mixed with vigorous steps that ensure the routines are no walk in the park.)

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Games on the Ave: Gamespot Reviews The Amazing Spider-Man

Also available on Xbox 360

In The Amazing Spider-Man, the webslinger dispenses quick wit almost as fast as he dispenses justice. More importantly, he gets room to show off his high-flying acrobatics with a freedom his last two outings were lacking. This time, Spidey has the whole of Manhattan as his playground. As you fling yourself above the city, swinging past skyscrapers and vaulting from towers, you get a dizzying sense of what it would be like to slip into the famous red and blue costume. 

It's a joy when The Amazing Spider-Man thrusts you into this wide-open world. By holding down a single trigger, you propel webbing from your wrists, swinging in whichever direction you choose. Expectedly, you don't necessarily see the webbing attach to anything nearby, which is fine: the joyous locomotion is all in the name of fun. Yet the game does a great job of providing the illusion that the laws of physics still vaguely apply. When you swish through a park that isn't near tall buildings, you stay near the ground, practically brushing the grass underneath you. When surrounded by stately superstructures, you rise toward the heavens, from where you can look upon the entire city and admire its vibrancy.

Out here in the concrete wilds, The Amazing Spider-Man is at its best, simply because moving around is so much fun. Hundreds of collectible comic pages twinkle on rooftops and flutter in the air. They are simple but nice rewards for the act of locomotion. Come near a page, and you hear and see its telltale glimmer, and note the button prompt inviting you to fling toward it. These signs are enough to have you scanning the screen, searching for the elusive paper. But there's more to the game than webswinging, of course: most of the story-based missions take you off the streets and send you into the sewers and other such interiors. Out in Manhattan, most tasks are optional and involve picking up asylum escapees and returning them to their institution, beating up muggers, and so forth.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Games on the Ave: Gamespot Reviews Lollipop Chainsaw

Also on Xbox 360

Juliet isn't having the best birthday. Sure, she's a chirpy, fresh-faced, popular 18-year-old cheerleader with a perfect body and a loving family, but her handsomely chiseled boyfriend has turned into a zombie, and things just aren't looking up. But Juliet's nothing if not resourceful, so she does what any right-thinking teenager would: she cuts off his head with a chainsaw, performs a bit of black magic, and ties his still-sentient head around her waist.
Clearly, you aren't supposed to take Lollipop Chainsaw seriously. You play as the sucker-loving Juliet, who, like the rest of her family, happens to be a zombie hunter. As luck would have it, her hometown is having a bit of trouble with the undead, and it's up to her and her chainsaw to slice and dice her way through her high school, across a baseball field, and through other mundane locales rendered all askew by vibrant neon-colored graphics and a general disregard for social propriety.
Just how improper is Lollipop Chainsaw? The opening cutscene features a just-18 Juliet welcoming you to her bedroom while the camera lovingly caresses her bare torso. She complains that she's getting fat from sucking on too many lollipops, though she has a physique women of any age would envy. Later, a high school classmate, saved from a zombie attack, happily calls out that he'll pleasure himself to thoughts of Juliet that night; elsewhere, a zombie-fied football player growls that he'll--well--let's just say the activity involves Juliet's noggin lodged somewhere you don't expect a noggin to comfortably fit.

Meanwhile, the screen explodes with pink hearts, yellow stars, and a million other bedazzlements, amping up the "cheerleader" theme just as Lollipop Chainsaw amps up its "sexual imagery" theme. Cheery pop tunes like Toni Basil's "Mickey" and "You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)" from Dead or Alive brighten the tone, too. With such touches, the game makes a clear attempt to take the pure pandering of Onechanbara (another game about scantily clad zombie killers) and twist it into something cheeky rather than downright crude. The first hour, however, takes these themes to the limits without doing much to outright parody them, which can be mightily uncomfortable. Eye-opening remarks about Juliet's breasts and anorexia references have shock value, but many of these early "jokes" are hardly clever.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Games on the AVE: Gamespot reviews Tom Clancy's GHOST RECON

Also available on PS3

The decades to come may be full of unknown potential for wondrous inventions, but in the gaming realm, the future is old hat. Invisibility, X-ray vision, and miniature floating cameras are modern marvels that have long since become familiar. Though these tools are potent in Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Future Soldier, there's precious little novelty in your futuristic arsenal, and this can make you feel like you're undertaking missions you've run many times before. So is Future Soldier just another by-the-book third-person shooter?

Fortunately not. Though there's plenty of familiarity to be found here, Future Soldier's brand of stealthy action and streamlined teamwork gives it a distinct appeal. The lengthy campaign lets you wield your AI allies like autonomous weapons; their guns are yours to command, but they handle their own maneuvers, pushing the action along at a slick pace. Replacing them with your fellow humans brings its own challenges and rewards, as does facing off against said humans in the lively competitive multiplayer modes. Though it's more of a product of the past than a vision of the future, Ghost Recon: Future Soldier is a robust package that provides plenty of satisfying ways to exercise your itchy trigger finger.
In the campaign, you play as the ghosts, a four-man team of elite soldiers. Cutscenes and mid-mission dialogue combine to create a nice sense of camaraderie among the crew, and hackneyed archetypes are downplayed in favor of more understated characterization. Personalities are colored in during small moments, like a song streaming out of earbuds, a fleeting facial expression, and a conversation about used trucks. Interactions with other military personnel reveal how isolated the ghosts are from the soldiers they break bread with and how oblivious those soldiers are to this fact. This segregation creates a connection among the ghosts that is a refreshing change from the familiar "bonds forged on the crucible of combat" trope.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Gaming News: Gamespot Reviews Rocksmith

With the oversaturated and ailing rhythm game genre in a state of decline, it seems ill-timed to launch a new guitar-focused music franchise. But Ubisoft has pulled one out of left field with Rocksmith--a guitar game that successfully bridges the gap between musical gaming and actual rocking. It's advanced enough to give seasoned guitar players a more realistic challenge than Rock Band or Guitar Hero, yet accessible enough to teach inexperienced guitarists the ropes of rock and roll.
There are a few minor hurdles to get through before you get rocking. Rocksmith requires you to own an actual six-string electric guitar and won't work with any old plastic peripherals you have lying around. It's a great excuse to dust off the old axe if you have one, but the high cost of picking up the Epiphone bundle or a separate guitar will be prohibitive for some players. That said, wielding an honest-to-goodness instrument of rock is what makes this game so fun. Once you have the requisite guitar in hand, you plug it into your system using the included 1/4-inch adapter cable, but it takes some fiddling to get a comfortable response time between the visual and audio lag. Running the sound out via analog audio cables into a stereo offers the best performance, though there are a few different options to explore. Once you get that mess sorted out, it's time to melt faces.

Gaming News: Gamespot Reviews GoldenEye 007 Reloaded

This title is also on PC & PS3

When GoldenEye 007 was released for the Wii last year, it proved that it is possible to successfully reimagine a classic. By combining the spy elements that made the Nintendo 64 original so engaging with modern amenities, it created a great experience that didn't use on nostalgia to be entertaining. One year later, GoldenEye 007: Reloaded comes to the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 with updated visuals, as well as a few other changes, and it remains an enticing change of pace from other shooters. Thoughtful missions force you to complete diverse objectives as you slink through enemy territory, and when you're spotted, Reloaded transforms into a hectic action game with razor-sharp mechanics and a variety of deadly weapons. GoldenEye 007: Reloaded doesn't rely on the memories of an aged shooter to be great; it earns that distinction on its own merits.

Friday, November 04, 2011

Gaming News: IGN Reviews Payday: The Heist

This title is also available on PS3

Heists figure into some of the most legendary plots in movie history, and now with Payday: The Heist, this cinematic trope becomes an interesting shooter concept. Overkill Software has done a great job with this innovative idea, which throws up to four players into robberies modeled along the lines of those depicted in flicks like Ocean's Elevenand Heat. The PC/PlayStation 3 game is geared for multiplayer, although the artificial intelligence is good enough that you can play solo without missing out on too much of the crazed intensity offered up by robbing banks and shooting it out with the cops who invariably want to stop you from making off with any ill-gotten gains.

Gaming News: Gamespot Reviews 'Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception'

Is it possible to have your expectations raised too high? Uncharted 2: Among Thievesdelivered a monumental leap over the first game in the series, and it might be easy to fall into the trap of assuming the same advancements would take place in every subsequent release. If that's your state of mind going into Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception, you might walk away slightly disappointed. But that's not a fair response. Though the third entry in this treasure-hunting franchise offers a similar experience to its revered predecessor, it's no less magical. Just about every element showcases the care and craftsmanship you would expect from the series. Combat is even more versatile than in previous entries, combining incredible shooting encounters with advanced hand-to-hand takedowns set in lavishly designed areas. When you need a break from the taxing physical endeavors, thoughtful puzzles allow you to explore your more contemplative side. And these two elements are punctuated by exhilarating set-piece events that leave you gasping. Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception is another superb entry in Nathan Drake's ongoing quest to find the world's many lost treasures.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Gaming News: Gamespot Reviews Battlefield 3

Title is Available on Xbox 360 & PS3 as well

When it comes to virtual battlefields, nobody does it quite like the Battlefield series. It has a long history of creating sprawling conflict zones where players have an exhilarating range of ways to make powerful contributions to the war effort. The competitive multiplayer mode in Battlefield 3 stays true to tradition, delivering an online combat experience that is amazingly addictive, immersive, and exciting, with refinements and new elements that make the familiar action feel fresh. Unfortunately, the stale single-player campaign fails to capitalize on the strengths of the series and feels like an off-brand imitation. The six cooperative missions fare better and offer a tougher challenge, but only the competitive multiplayer provides a compelling reason to buy Battlefield 3. With online battles this excellent, though, that reason is all you need.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Gaming News: Gamespot Reviews BatMan: Arkham City

This title is also available on PS3 and PC

Gotham City. This crime-infested metropolis has been famously imagined and reimagined in comic books, cartoons, and films. Now, we have a new vision of Gotham, and it stands not just as one of the most unforgettable incarnations ever of the city that Batman is devoted to protecting, but as one of the most richly detailed and exciting environments ever seen in a game. Building on 2009's outstanding Batman: Arkham Asylum, Batman: Arkham City sets you free in the intoxicating neighborhood of North Gotham, now a sealed-off superprison for the city's worst criminals. As the Caped Crusader, you struggle to bring some semblance of order to the chaotic streets, foiling the plots of supervillains and protecting the victims of those who prey on the innocent. With its atmospheric setting, thrilling movement, immensely satisfying combat, and tremendous assortment of secrets to discover, side quests to complete, and other attractions, Arkham City is a fantastic adventure game.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Gaming News: Gamespot Reviews Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One

It's all a matter of perspective. When you compare All 4 One to previous Ratchet & Clank games, you might think the biggest change is the addition of a cooperative mode. But given that you could team up in Ratchet: Deadlocked, that isn't quite true. Rather, a zoomed-out, fixed-angle camera is the biggest differentiator. You no longer view battles up close and personal with direct control over where your bullets fly. And this shift in how you look at and interact with the world makes the shooting portion of this space-faring adventure its weakest aspect. Thankfully, thoughtful puzzles and exciting vehicle sequences partially fill the void left by the so-so combat, and the inherent delight of joining forces with your friends ensures you're continually having fun. This may not be the Ratchet you've grown accustomed to, but whimsical charm and wacky hijinks make this another solid entry in the long-running franchise

Friday, October 14, 2011

Gaming News: Gamespot Reviews Crysis

Originally released on the PC, this title has been re-released for PS3 & Xbox 360

Any discussion of 2007's PC shooter Crysis inevitably turns to its graphics. It was--is--a beautiful game, boasting incredible technology that makes it one of the most lifelike adventures to date. For some, its excellence as a shooter is secondary, which is too bad: Crysis is a fun and challenging game that doesn't rely on its technological wonders to make an impact. Now, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 owners get to experience these wonders for themselves, and they should be pleased to learn that the game holds up well, due in part to some interface tweaks pulled directly from Crysis 2. The console Crysis isn't as beautiful as the PC original, or even this year's sequel, which may be why its flaws seem more readily apparent than before. Don't take that to mean that Crysis isn't a looker, though: It's absolutely attractive on its new platforms. More importantly, shooting humans and aliens amid lush jungle foliage and frigid ravines is as entertaining as ever. 

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Gaming News: Gamespot Reviews Dead Rising 2: Off the Record

This title is also available on Xbox 360

Be careful what you wish for. Since Dead Rising's release in 2006, players have been clamoring for a sandbox mode. In Dead Rising 2: Off the Record, you finally have a chance to tear through Fortune City without a leash pulling you through, and it's now clear why such an option was absent in the past. It's boring. Finicky controls and shallow combat have been a part of the series since the beginning, but it was possible to look past these problems because you were constantly pushed from one ticking objective to the next. Once the handcuffs are removed in Off the Record, these quirks become more apparent, and it only takes so long before the thrill of killing zombies dissipates. Story mode isn't much of a draw for series veterans, either, because it's virtually an identical retread of Dead Rising 2. For people who have never touched a Dead Rising game before, Off the Record is as good a place to start as any, but it's far too similar to the previous game to make it exciting for longtime fans or those who have never had interest in these wacky adventures.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Gaming News: IGN Reviews Spider-Man: Edge of Time

This title is available on Wii, Xbox 360, and PS3

Oh what a tangle web we weave, when first we practice to deceive. That sentiment, sadly, also applies to Edge of Time. It fails rather spectacularly to capitalise upon the potential of last year's Shattered Dimensions. Despite coming from the same developer, Beenox, it unstitches most of the things Shattered Dimensions did so well, creating a game that is in so many respects an unworthy follow-up. 
Whilst not a direct sequel to Shattered Dimensions, Edge of Time follows two of its protagonists – The Amazing Spider-Man and Spider-Man 2099. And the plot is fairly straightforward. In 2099, crazed scientist Walker Sloan, using experimental technology, travels back in time to establish the nefarious Alchemax corporation back in the 1970's.

He succeeds and time splinters, creating an alternate universe. In the process the original Peter Parker dies at the tentacular hands of Anti-Venom. So Spider-Man 2099 dragoons Peter Parker from the new, alternate timeline to help him rectify reality. Got it? Although this may read like an epic backdrop for a game, with the fate of the universe and the life of Spider-Man himself at stake, the way in which it is rendered makes it feel anything but. 

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