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Demon Souls Review

In February of 2009, a game called Demon’s Souls was released in Japan. Later that year in October 2009, the game was released in the USA. Now in June 2010, this title has finally hit South African shores. Developed by From Software and published by Namco Bandai, Demon’s Souls is an action role-playing game set in medieval times.

Demon’s Souls takes place in the kingdom of Boletaria. It has been enveloped in something called the “Deep Fog” as a result of the king using a dark ritual to gain power and bring prosperity to the land. The ritual was successful and brought prosperity to the kingdom, but the Deep Fog followed and covered the outskirts of Boletaria. The kingdom was cut off from the outside world causing other kingdoms to send scouts to investigate the lack of communication. However, none of them returned after wandering into the fog. Eventually someone did manage to breach the fog and tell the world about the terrible problem that burdens the kingdom of Boletaria. With the fog came bloodthirsty demons, hungry for the souls of mankind. Warriors tried to break through the fog to save Boletaria and some wanted to harness the power of the fog. Needless to say, they did not return. You play as a warrior who has made it through the fog and actually entered the castle. Thus begins your journey to defeat the evil awoken by the ritual and save mankind from annihilation.

The atmosphere in the game is incredible. It’s very dark in nature considering it’s the medieval period. It can be pretty dark at times and even with the brightness turned all the way up, you might struggle to see. The worlds that you will visit in the game are varied and very well done. They’re just beautiful in style and scale. The creatures that you will be facing really show good design. Props go to the developers for being original. Quite a bit of detail has gone into the animation for the main character. The animations change depending on your weapon setup and also if you’re holding the weapon with one hand or two. It’s a very nice touch. The graphics are really good except for a few hiccups here and there. There isn’t really music during the game until you face a boss and even then, the music could be better. The voice acting of the main cast is done well but the same can’t be said about the side characters as they really seem to lack energy. There were a few frame rate problems in the areas that were full of activity but it’s a very small problem in relation to the rest of the game.

The game starts with creating your own character and choosing the type of class you wish to use.  However, the great thing is that you are never restricted to that class’s skill set. The depth of upgrading is unbelievable. There are 8 different categories that can be increased such as Strength, Endurance and Luck. When you kill enemies, you will receive Demon’s Souls. These souls are what would be used to increase stats but it is also the game’s currency, so they would also be used to upgrade or purchase weapons and armour. However, as you increase your stats, your Soul Level does as well. This means that upgrading will become more and more expensive. You’ll never really have the option of upgrading a few things at once. More often than not, you’ll end up having to choose what to upgrade. There’s no denying it, Demon’s Souls is a very hard game. It’s going to beat you down and rub your nose in the dirt like a bully at school (But enough about my school life…Moving on). It’s not going to hold your hand at all. You are going to die and you are going to die a lot! When you die, you go right back to the beginning of the level. There is no pausing the game. When you hit the Start button, it will bring up a menu but the action will still continue. If you have unused souls when you die, you lose all of them. Yes, that’s right…All of them! When you respawn, you spawn in a phantom form. You can go back to the spot where you died and get all your souls back but all the enemies respawn. So if you’re killed while in phantom form, those souls are gone forever. Another feature to be mentioned is that the game is designed in such a way that if you keep dying, the enemies become tougher. It’s not a cheap way to kill you or to make you frustrated, the game is actually trying to teach you to play better. You’ll develop tactics, discover locations of treasure and notice patterns of enemies. You’ll also learn to take things slow and always defend yourself by blocking. The game is very hard, but it is a good change from all the relatively easy games out there.

The multiplayer in Demon’s Souls is pretty unique in that it has no lobby and there is no chat. No voice chat, no text chat. But if you do decide to go online while playing, you will be able to see ghostly figures of other players that might be exploring the same world that you are. The only difference is that they will be in another dimension. Also, if you find a blood stain, you will be able to see the last 10 seconds of the life of the player that died, which might alert you to hazards in the area. There is also an option to leave preset messages for other players online. You might want to alert them of possible dangers or maybe tell them how to defeat a certain enemy. Another really cool feature is the ability to summon other players to assist you with a tough situation. In which case, the summoned player will be in phantom form. The only real downside is the lack of chat in the multiplayer, which can be frustrating for players needing to communicate in a difficult situation.

Conclusion:
Overall, Demon’s Souls is a really good game. It might be very challenging but it is also very rewarding. If you come out of any battle alive, you’ll feel like a real badass. It’s a nice reminder of all the old school games from the NES that would have us pulling our hair out with frustration. You might want to pull out your hair with this title too, but probably not as much. If you want a real challenge and a really good game, then Demon’s Souls might be the next addition to your collection.

Predominantly reviewed on PlayStation 3.

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Blur Review

Shift into gear with a remarkable racing game! If you think your vision is impaired, wait till you play Blur!

Developed by Bizarre Creations and published by Activision comes a feature packed racing game with a difference.

So what’s the Big Deal?
Blur incorporates real-world cars and locations, with arcade style handling and intense vehicle combat, which is well implemented in this racing title with a difference.

Although the story-line is not so different from the rest of the titles out there, the game-play is well worth experiencing.

Massive attacks and power-ups await the gamer in this fast and exhilarating title, power-ups range from Mines, Shock attacks, Defensive Shields and Nitro speed boosts, which can be collected throughout the race and used all at once, creating some devastating combos to knock the opposition to the curb.

The Racing impact!
While not all the focus should go into the power-ups, Blur does focus on racing which is the most important part of the game. Get ready to face some tough AI in the story-mode which will test your skills on track. Blur is fast and when I say fast, I mean get ready to have an extra set of wet wipes handy to scrape the perspiration off your face as your reflexes will be tested!

Drifting is a nice addition to the game, but will take some getting used to as you sample each unique photo-realistic vehicle that this title has to offer. With some practice you will be flying past the opposition with style, elegance while dropping land mines to further hinder your rivals.

Bizarre Creations’ community-based interface enables gamers to acquire a network of allies, fans and those all important rivals, throwing in a unique personal racing experience that gamers will find truly fresh when it comes to racing games of this genre.

Can I play with my friends?
Blur features a 4 player split screen racing experience, as well as a 20 player online experience which consists of either, competitive or team based racing.

Blur is a game you will want to play online with a host of unlockables which can be acquired while dominating the online community. The online experience is addictive, so don’t think you will be letting go of that control anytime soon, as you will be looking to dominate the opposition over and over again!

Musically in tune?
Blur hosts a selection of artists which set the mood for this fast paced title, these artist include, The Emmy award winning Jacknife Lee, The Crystal method, Coldcut, The Qemists and The Herbalisers.

If these artists are not entirely to your taste, the option to turn off the music is located in the options menu, although they do intensify the racing experience of Blur.

The checkered Flag!
Blur is a great racing game, which is a blast to play.

The intense game-play is complimented by great visuals, especially when blowing away any rivals on course that take you on.

The AI is highly challenging and well worth taking on, although any frustration can be dealt with by dropping the difficulty level.

The online gaming is superb especially in the team-based racing modes, although, going up against 19 other opponents in competitive online racing, can be slightly frustrating at first but once you get the hang of it you will be dominating in no time.

The music has an impact in Blur it brings excitement to the intense racing world around you.

Bizarre Creations’ have definitely hit the sweet spot in this intense title.

Predominantly reviewed on PlayStation 3.

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Demon Souls Review

In February of 2009, a game called Demon’s Souls was released in Japan. Later that year in October 2009, the game was released in the USA. Now in June 2010, this title has finally hit South African shores. Developed by From Software and published by Namco Bandai, Demon’s Souls is an action role-playing game set in medieval times.

Demon’s Souls takes place in the kingdom of Boletaria. It has been enveloped in something called the “Deep Fog” as a result of the king using a dark ritual to gain power and bring prosperity to the land. The ritual was successful and brought prosperity to the kingdom, but the Deep Fog followed and covered the outskirts of Boletaria. The kingdom was cut off from the outside world causing other kingdoms to send scouts to investigate the lack of communication. However, none of them returned after wandering into the fog. Eventually someone did manage to breach the fog and tell the world about the terrible problem that burdens the kingdom of Boletaria. With the fog came bloodthirsty demons, hungry for the souls of mankind. Warriors tried to break through the fog to save Boletaria and some wanted to harness the power of the fog. Needless to say, they did not return. You play as a warrior who has made it through the fog and actually entered the castle. Thus begins your journey to defeat the evil awoken by the ritual and save mankind from annihilation.

The atmosphere in the game is incredible. It’s very dark in nature considering it’s the medieval period. It can be pretty dark at times and even with the brightness turned all the way up, you might struggle to see. The worlds that you will visit in the game are varied and very well done. They’re just beautiful in style and scale. The creatures that you will be facing really show good design. Props go to the developers for being original. Quite a bit of detail has gone into the animation for the main character. The animations change depending on your weapon setup and also if you’re holding the weapon with one hand or two. It’s a very nice touch. The graphics are really good except for a few hiccups here and there. There isn’t really music during the game until you face a boss and even then, the music could be better. The voice acting of the main cast is done well but the same can’t be said about the side characters as they really seem to lack energy. There were a few frame rate problems in the areas that were full of activity but it’s a very small problem in relation to the rest of the game.

The game starts with creating your own character and choosing the type of class you wish to use.  However, the great thing is that you are never restricted to that class’s skill set. The depth of upgrading is unbelievable. There are 8 different categories that can be increased such as Strength, Endurance and Luck. When you kill enemies, you will receive Demon’s Souls. These souls are what would be used to increase stats but it is also the game’s currency, so they would also be used to upgrade or purchase weapons and armour. However, as you increase your stats, your Soul Level does as well. This means that upgrading will become more and more expensive. You’ll never really have the option of upgrading a few things at once. More often than not, you’ll end up having to choose what to upgrade. There’s no denying it, Demon’s Souls is a very hard game. It’s going to beat you down and rub your nose in the dirt like a bully at school (But enough about my school life…Moving on). It’s not going to hold your hand at all. You are going to die and you are going to die a lot! When you die, you go right back to the beginning of the level. There is no pausing the game. When you hit the Start button, it will bring up a menu but the action will still continue. If you have unused souls when you die, you lose all of them. Yes, that’s right…All of them! When you respawn, you spawn in a phantom form. You can go back to the spot where you died and get all your souls back but all the enemies respawn. So if you’re killed while in phantom form, those souls are gone forever. Another feature to be mentioned is that the game is designed in such a way that if you keep dying, the enemies become tougher. It’s not a cheap way to kill you or to make you frustrated, the game is actually trying to teach you to play better. You’ll develop tactics, discover locations of treasure and notice patterns of enemies. You’ll also learn to take things slow and always defend yourself by blocking. The game is very hard, but it is a good change from all the relatively easy games out there.

The multiplayer in Demon’s Souls is pretty unique in that it has no lobby and there is no chat. No voice chat, no text chat. But if you do decide to go online while playing, you will be able to see ghostly figures of other players that might be exploring the same world that you are. The only difference is that they will be in another dimension. Also, if you find a blood stain, you will be able to see the last 10 seconds of the life of the player that died, which might alert you to hazards in the area. There is also an option to leave preset messages for other players online. You might want to alert them of possible dangers or maybe tell them how to defeat a certain enemy. Another really cool feature is the ability to summon other players to assist you with a tough situation. In which case, the summoned player will be in phantom form. The only real downside is the lack of chat in the multiplayer, which can be frustrating for players needing to communicate in a difficult situation.

Conclusion:
Overall, Demon’s Souls is a really good game. It might be very challenging but it is also very rewarding. If you come out of any battle alive, you’ll feel like a real badass. It’s a nice reminder of all the old school games from the NES that would have us pulling our hair out with frustration. You might want to pull out your hair with this title too, but probably not as much. If you want a real challenge and a really good game, then Demon’s Souls might be the next addition to your collection.

Predominantly reviewed on PlayStation 3.

Categories
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Blur Review

Shift into gear with a remarkable racing game! If you think your vision is impaired, wait till you play Blur!

Developed by Bizarre Creations and published by Activision comes a feature packed racing game with a difference.

So what’s the Big Deal?
Blur incorporates real-world cars and locations, with arcade style handling and intense vehicle combat, which is well implemented in this racing title with a difference.

Although the story-line is not so different from the rest of the titles out there, the game-play is well worth experiencing.

Massive attacks and power-ups await the gamer in this fast and exhilarating title, power-ups range from Mines, Shock attacks, Defensive Shields and Nitro speed boosts, which can be collected throughout the race and used all at once, creating some devastating combos to knock the opposition to the curb.

The Racing impact!
While not all the focus should go into the power-ups, Blur does focus on racing which is the most important part of the game. Get ready to face some tough AI in the story-mode which will test your skills on track. Blur is fast and when I say fast, I mean get ready to have an extra set of wet wipes handy to scrape the perspiration off your face as your reflexes will be tested!

Drifting is a nice addition to the game, but will take some getting used to as you sample each unique photo-realistic vehicle that this title has to offer. With some practice you will be flying past the opposition with style, elegance while dropping land mines to further hinder your rivals.

Bizarre Creations’ community-based interface enables gamers to acquire a network of allies, fans and those all important rivals, throwing in a unique personal racing experience that gamers will find truly fresh when it comes to racing games of this genre.

Can I play with my friends?
Blur features a 4 player split screen racing experience, as well as a 20 player online experience which consists of either, competitive or team based racing.

Blur is a game you will want to play online with a host of unlockables which can be acquired while dominating the online community. The online experience is addictive, so don’t think you will be letting go of that control anytime soon, as you will be looking to dominate the opposition over and over again!

Musically in tune?
Blur hosts a selection of artists which set the mood for this fast paced title, these artist include, The Emmy award winning Jacknife Lee, The Crystal method, Coldcut, The Qemists and The Herbalisers.

If these artists are not entirely to your taste, the option to turn off the music is located in the options menu, although they do intensify the racing experience of Blur.

The checkered Flag!
Blur is a great racing game, which is a blast to play.

The intense game-play is complimented by great visuals, especially when blowing away any rivals on course that take you on.

The AI is highly challenging and well worth taking on, although any frustration can be dealt with by dropping the difficulty level.

The online gaming is superb especially in the team-based racing modes, although, going up against 19 other opponents in competitive online racing, can be slightly frustrating at first but once you get the hang of it you will be dominating in no time.

The music has an impact in Blur it brings excitement to the intense racing world around you.

Bizarre Creations’ have definitely hit the sweet spot in this intense title.

Predominantly reviewed on PlayStation 3.

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WWE: All Stars Review

doned the series and games over time, we still see new games coming out of the woodwork. WWE All Stars is now on the shelves but the question remains, is it worth buying? Time to find out!

Past WWE titles have slowly but surely been morphing into what can only be described as wrestling simulations, it’s all fine and dandy to try and make these games as real as possible, but the problem is that when developers make games realistic most of the fun usually gets kicked out first! This is where WWE All Stars hopes to set things right. No more individual health meters for each limb, just one single old-school arcade style health bar. Characters are also no longer limited to ground based combat only but can also do more exaggerated over-the-top mid-air attacks.

The game offers numerous gameplay modes to treat fans to, such as Path of Champions mode, where you get to pick your favorite wrestler and then battle it out until you are crowned champion. However, there are many unique paths to discover that will make you want to come back for more. If anything, the only real blemish here is the fact that the main menu lags a bit. Veteran players will also probably find fault with the new health bar, since in previous titles it was somewhat possible to make a comeback from even the worst luck at the start of a match and escape defeat repeatedly… presuming you had enough skill though. Players will also be able to once again create their own character; just don’t expect them to look very life-like.

Everything in this game has a cartoon action hero feel to it, this includes the special moves that the characters execute. As mentioned before the special moves are greatly exaggerated, but this just makes it all the more sweeter when you manage to land one on an opponent that is down to his last bit of health. There is after all, nothing quite like rubbing it in and if you’re going to do it then why not over do it?

There doesn’t seem to be anything wrong as far as sound is concerned. By that, I mean that glitches where certain actions on screen are not accompanied by the appropriate sound does not seem apparent. This is a common glitch found in modern games today but it appears to be absent in WWE All Stars, which is a good thing. The bad news is that while the sound is working well the game doesn’t seem to have any wow moments either. Gamers who have a bass speaker attached to their console or a surround sound system may not feel as impressed as they may have hoped to be with the sound. At least it works though… right?

As I mentioned before the graphics are over-the-top and cartoon-like and each wrestler has a chest bigger than their real-life counterpart does. Frankly, this was just borderline freaky.

Some shortcuts have been taken with the character’s hair; you will never see a single hair on their head fall out of place. Honestly, this actually works and looks graphically better in my opinion, or at least as far as this game is concerned. If anything, at least it shows that the developers thought it was a good idea to remove this from the game and build on the strengths of the game engine instead of adding unnecessary elements. Special effects during special moves gives the game a very unique feel to it, but after a while they become slightly stale and offer nothing more than a giant “you are about to get beat up and you can’t do a thing about it” feel to them. Regardless of all this WWE All Stars is the best looking WWE game out there. (For each platform respectively).

Conclusion:
WWE games have always been loved by fans simply because they make great party games. If you and your friends both loved playing the previous titles and/or watching the shows. Then I suggest getting your hands on this title. It’s wacky, crazy and comes with a big fat dose of nostalgia… just be careful that it doesn’t all go straight to your chest. The downside is that all of this tends to get slightly stale after a while.

The Breakdown:
Gameplay – 7/10
Sound – 7/10
Graphics – 8/10

Predominantly reviewed on Xbox 360.

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Saw II: Flesh & Blood Review

There have been very few horror games that you just simply wouldn’t want to play. On the other side of things. There have been very few games based on movies that you would want to play… unless if you are a hardcore fan. So what would the final result be if a game was made that could be classified as both? Time to find out!

If you enjoyed the previous Saw title then you might as well stop reading now. Saw II merely tweaks what was on display in the first. For fans of the Saw movie franchise the main motive for buying this title will be the story which takes place between the second & third films.

The game helps clarify the movies better but unfortunately it doesn’t seem to share the same kind of horror aspect. Traps can be avoided with quick-time events; although the game fails at helping you feel any form of sympathy for the featured characters. They’re just not that well “fleshed out”. The puzzles in the game are also largely the same as with the previous game. The only noticeable change is that “circuit puzzles” no longer require you to match wires of the same colour. Instead now you have to match wires of the opposite colour.

The game is filled with “quick-time events” all the way through. It helps keep you on your toes but might get a bit stale the more you encounter them. Fortunately if you get sick of the typical combat you can try killing enemies using all kinds of rather gruesome devices placed all through the game at just the right locations. This is the kind of title you may want to play through twice, as the game has multiple endings, although the game will start to judge you from the very first moment you start playing.

Sound is one area of the game where the developers should have probably looked for a second opinion. Some of the atmosphere and effects just don’t seem to pack as much of a punch as they should. You’ll still get a jolt from the first shotgun trap that catches you unaware. The problem comes when you start to anticipate the traps, it’ll just all start to look & sound the same. To expect different reactions from the same traps might be unreasonable, but for the developers to use slightly different sound effects isn’t. At the very least they could have had two different sound recordings for each trap. This will probably only bother you if use something other than your TV’s speakers though.

Most of the gore in the game feels a bit artificial & just doesn’t have quite as much of a horrifying effect as you’d hope for. There are some bits that may leave you feeling like you wish you could look the other way, but this could perhaps rather be because of the way they’re implemented, rather than what you’re seeing on screen.

Locations all have that “horror movie feel” although they may not be the best looking, they’ve managed to stay true to the Saw films.

Bright colours & visual effects are reserved almost exclusively for areas of interest or locations & items the player should investigate. This helps to ensure the game always keeps you on edge & makes you feel like you are in a hostile environment.

Conclusion:
Saw II Flesh and Blood is filled with numerous thrills & puzzles that are sure to make that “lazy Saturday” just blissfully pass by. The game has does need improvement, but since most of it is either quick time or puzzle based you don’t need to be an experienced gamer to enjoy it.  As is the case with most games like this you may need some outside knowledge from the films to fully enjoy this game.

The Breakdown:
Gameplay: 5/10
Sound: 6/10
Graphics: 6/10

Predominantly reviewed on Xbox 360.

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Blur Review

Shift into gear with a remarkable racing game! If you think your vision is impaired, wait till you play Blur!

Developed by Bizarre Creations and published by Activision comes a feature packed racing game with a difference.

So what’s the Big Deal?
Blur incorporates real-world cars and locations, with arcade style handling and intense vehicle combat, which is well implemented in this racing title with a difference.

Although the story-line is not so different from the rest of the titles out there, the game-play is well worth experiencing.

Massive attacks and power-ups await the gamer in this fast and exhilarating title, power-ups range from Mines, Shock attacks, Defensive Shields and Nitro speed boosts, which can be collected throughout the race and used all at once, creating some devastating combos to knock the opposition to the curb.

The Racing impact!
While not all the focus should go into the power-ups, Blur does focus on racing which is the most important part of the game. Get ready to face some tough AI in the story-mode which will test your skills on track. Blur is fast and when I say fast, I mean get ready to have an extra set of wet wipes handy to scrape the perspiration off your face as your reflexes will be tested!

Drifting is a nice addition to the game, but will take some getting used to as you sample each unique photo-realistic vehicle that this title has to offer. With some practice you will be flying past the opposition with style, elegance while dropping land mines to further hinder your rivals.

Bizarre Creations’ community-based interface enables gamers to acquire a network of allies, fans and those all important rivals, throwing in a unique personal racing experience that gamers will find truly fresh when it comes to racing games of this genre.

Can I play with my friends?
Blur features a 4 player split screen racing experience, as well as a 20 player online experience which consists of either, competitive or team based racing.

Blur is a game you will want to play online with a host of unlockables which can be acquired while dominating the online community. The online experience is addictive, so don’t think you will be letting go of that control anytime soon, as you will be looking to dominate the opposition over and over again!

Musically in tune?
Blur hosts a selection of artists which set the mood for this fast paced title, these artist include, The Emmy award winning Jacknife Lee, The Crystal method, Coldcut, The Qemists and The Herbalisers.

If these artists are not entirely to your taste, the option to turn off the music is located in the options menu, although they do intensify the racing experience of Blur.

The checkered Flag!
Blur is a great racing game, which is a blast to play.

The intense game-play is complimented by great visuals, especially when blowing away any rivals on course that take you on.

The AI is highly challenging and well worth taking on, although any frustration can be dealt with by dropping the difficulty level.

The online gaming is superb especially in the team-based racing modes, although, going up against 19 other opponents in competitive online racing, can be slightly frustrating at first but once you get the hang of it you will be dominating in no time.

The music has an impact in Blur it brings excitement to the intense racing world around you.

Bizarre Creations’ have definitely hit the sweet spot in this intense title.

Predominantly reviewed on PlayStation 3.

Categories
PlayStation 3 Reveiws PlayStation Reveiws

Heavy Rain Review

A Different approach to the world of gaming! Developed by Quantic Dream and most definitely a PlayStation 3 exclusive, we wonder how this new style of game-play will affect our Sofa, our wrists and our cheese-puff loving Fingers. But before we get into that, let’s get straight to the Voice Talent.

With no voice we have no game, with no game, the only Heavy Rain Gamers will experience is accumulated thunder showers… Gamers need not purchase an umbrella as Heavy Rain will set the mood. The Voices are in my head? No they are on your screen! Quantic Dream used the voice talents of: Sam Douglas as Scott Shelby, who has featured in a variety of films, which include: Alien Autopsy, Agent Cody Banks 2, Snatch, and the upcoming release Tribe.

Leon Ockenden as Norman Jayden, featuring on a variety of television programs which include: Heartbeat, Heroes and Villains, Tripping Over and Hustle.

Judy Beecher as Madison Paige, in the English Version, her stacked up film career includes: Only in Paris, Simone, Perfect Pitch, Bloodline and the upcoming release Cameraman.

Pascal Langdale as Ethan Mars Featuring on a variety of movies and television programs Pascals arsenal of movies and programs include: My Family, Spooks, The Bill and J’auraid Voule etre un danseur.

With a phenomenal voice cast heavy rain delivers. But where are the Cheese-Puffs? Wait you will experience something far more tasty when digging into heavy Rain, now for those of you who want game-play let’s take a gander into the immerse world of Heavy Rain.

Six-Axis, which is what, will completely appeal to any Gamer out there.
With the usual use of the Six-Axis Controller, gamers feel more involved in the game-play; Quantic Dream has taken this to the next Level! With Gamers being prompted to move the Six-Axis controller in various motions and including vast amounts of Quick-time Events, Gamers are thrown into the world of heavy Rain, While throwing their control about like an individual that is allergic to bee’s, which proves quite entertaining, as the interactive level of game-play is something we have never witnessed before. While missing certain Quick time movements is not a train smash, the game does not end, if a certain character is wasted the story progresses to the next available character.

Tori Amos? Will not be making an appearance in Heavy Rain! Although the massive Story line is one that is emotional, riveting, gripping and pulls a few surprises on the Gamer, and no! Not pulling his pants down in front of a room full of people but by twisting and turning.

The Story revolves around the 4 Characters and the Infamous “Origami Killer” The game opens with Ethan Mars, spending his time with his family. He later loses sight of one of his Kids, at a busy shopping Centre. His Son is found lingering on the busy street, Ethan tries to save him from an oncoming car, which is probably driven by a (cheese-puff munching machine) tragically his son is killed, while Ethan is injured, which puts him into a coma for 6 months. Two years after the accident, Ethan has depression, he has blackouts that last for several hours on end, His wife has left him, and his remaining Son is distant and detached from him, Ethan also has a fear of crowds to add to his problems, while at a park Ethan has another blackout, and wakes to find his Son missing. This event is eventually tied to the “Origami Killer”.

Conclusion:
An abrupt Ending? Yes for those gamers interested in finding out what happens next, Grab yourself a Copy of Heavy Rain to experience a truly masterful release and PS3 Exclusive from Quantic Dream.

Slick Stylish Emotional and something you not going to put down! Your wrists, fingers and brain will thank you for purchasing this epic title. Look out For the Latest DLC’s from the PlayStation Network.

Predominantly reviewed on PlayStation 3.

Categories
PlayStation 3 Reveiws Xbox 360 Reveiws

Blur Review

Shift into gear with a remarkable racing game! If you think your vision is impaired, wait till you play Blur!

Developed by Bizarre Creations and published by Activision comes a feature packed racing game with a difference.

So what’s the Big Deal?
Blur incorporates real-world cars and locations, with arcade style handling and intense vehicle combat, which is well implemented in this racing title with a difference.

Although the story-line is not so different from the rest of the titles out there, the game-play is well worth experiencing.

Massive attacks and power-ups await the gamer in this fast and exhilarating title, power-ups range from Mines, Shock attacks, Defensive Shields and Nitro speed boosts, which can be collected throughout the race and used all at once, creating some devastating combos to knock the opposition to the curb.

The Racing impact!
While not all the focus should go into the power-ups, Blur does focus on racing which is the most important part of the game. Get ready to face some tough AI in the story-mode which will test your skills on track. Blur is fast and when I say fast, I mean get ready to have an extra set of wet wipes handy to scrape the perspiration off your face as your reflexes will be tested!

Drifting is a nice addition to the game, but will take some getting used to as you sample each unique photo-realistic vehicle that this title has to offer. With some practice you will be flying past the opposition with style, elegance while dropping land mines to further hinder your rivals.

Bizarre Creations’ community-based interface enables gamers to acquire a network of allies, fans and those all important rivals, throwing in a unique personal racing experience that gamers will find truly fresh when it comes to racing games of this genre.

Can I play with my friends?
Blur features a 4 player split screen racing experience, as well as a 20 player online experience which consists of either, competitive or team based racing.

Blur is a game you will want to play online with a host of unlockables which can be acquired while dominating the online community. The online experience is addictive, so don’t think you will be letting go of that control anytime soon, as you will be looking to dominate the opposition over and over again!

Musically in tune?
Blur hosts a selection of artists which set the mood for this fast paced title, these artist include, The Emmy award winning Jacknife Lee, The Crystal method, Coldcut, The Qemists and The Herbalisers.

If these artists are not entirely to your taste, the option to turn off the music is located in the options menu, although they do intensify the racing experience of Blur.

The checkered Flag!
Blur is a great racing game, which is a blast to play.

The intense game-play is complimented by great visuals, especially when blowing away any rivals on course that take you on.

The AI is highly challenging and well worth taking on, although any frustration can be dealt with by dropping the difficulty level.

The online gaming is superb especially in the team-based racing modes, although, going up against 19 other opponents in competitive online racing, can be slightly frustrating at first but once you get the hang of it you will be dominating in no time.

The music has an impact in Blur it brings excitement to the intense racing world around you.

Bizarre Creations’ have definitely hit the sweet spot in this intense title.

Predominantly reviewed on PlayStation 3.

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LittleBigPlanet 2 Review

Cute sack people, a cheerful soundtrack, a brilliant art style and challenging levels to play through were what made this game an instant hit. It also featured a Create Mode where players could create their own levels to play in and share with the rest of the LBP community. Over 3.5 million levels have been created by players. Designers, Media Molecule and publishers, Sony Computer Entertainment have released a direct sequel aptly titled, LittleBigPlanet 2. It seems that the creative genius behind the first game carries over into the sequel.

The story of the game is pretty simple: the inhabitants of LittleBigPlanet are sucked up into an inter-dimensional vacuum cleaner after it appears in the sky. Unfortunately, Sackboy suffers the same fate and ends up in a place called Craftworld. Here, he gets rescued from “The Negativitron” by a group called “The Alliance” and its leader, Larry Da Vinci. The Alliance is dedicated to fighting and defeating the evil Negativitron before it ultimately destroys Craftworld.

LittleBigPlanet 2, just like its predecessor, is a 2.5-D platform game at heart in which you make your way from Point A to Point B. You dodge obstacles, jump on enemies, pull levers and swing across gaps to get to your destination. You collect bubbles in levels to earn points. Sound familiar? Well, there’s more. LBP2 tends to mix things up in the levels a bit more than in the first game. In one level, you may be running throughout the level and in the next, you might be riding on the back of a bee, firing honey. You may even find yourself going vertical on the back of a caterpillar. There are also new gadgets and devices that will make completing a level just a little more fun. Firstly, there are jump pads that launch you high into the air to reach ledges and other possible secrets. Secondly, the “Creatinator” is a hat which Sackboy will wear that can be adjusted to fire any object that the player chooses. Thirdly, the “Grabinator” will give Sackboy the ability to grab and throw any object that is able to be grabbed (Did that make any sense?). The levels have really become more interesting than in the first game; making them unpredictable and ultimately more fun.

Replayability will not be a problem for this game, not at all! You might be able to beat the story mode in a short period of time if you play continuously, but you can bet that you will come back for more. There are high scores to beat, outfits to find, hidden stickers to find and challenges to unlock. The game also offers personal pins for different challenges so you have something to show for your effort and maybe just brag about how awesome you are. Also, just like the first LittleBigPlanet; LBP2 has multiplayer. You can play cooperatively with up to 3 other players so that means 4 players in total within a game. Also, what’s really great is that LBP is very easy to pick up and play so it’s suitable for all ages. The beauty of the multiplayer is that it can be played locally or online. For challenging other players, you can play games like basketball, pool and air hockey, which are unlocked through the Story Mode. I only had one real problem with the multiplayer. If playing a co-op game locally and one player decides to run ahead of everyone else, the camera will zoom out to try and keep track of all the players. This makes distinguishing your Sack person very hard. Also, the players left behind might be killed off and will only be able to rejoin at the next checkpoint.

Fans of the first game will know that it has a Create Mode where you are able to craft your own levels out of scratch. It was praised for its addition but not for it’s execution in certain areas as some people felt that it became too complicated. From what I’ve experienced, the Create Mode has been simplified for easier level creation. It also has so many more options for the player to choose from such as creating a racing level, one that incorporates shooting and you are also able to add cutscenes to your created level. However, things can become a little tricky when trying to use certain elements such as making projectiles actually register as projectiles. It can be fixed by digging into the Create Mode’s settings but it couldn’t really help with the complicated features. Not necessarily a big issue as it didn’t take that much away from the experience.

Not much can really be said about the graphics except that the game’s engine has shown some improvement in terms of lighting; it just looks better. The visuals are truly superb and show off some of the PS3’s potential. The level design is typical LBP style; very cute and colourful.

The audio in the game is great! Ranging from sound effects, to voice-overs of gibberish, to the soundtrack; everything is very well done. If you’ve played the first LBP, you’ll know what to expect from the soundtrack. It’s made up of cheery songs but not the kind that will drive you crazy. It’s the kind that is very catchy and will have you humming along while you play. You can also use the sound effects and tracks in your own created levels. Another great feature is that you will be able to record your own samples if you want your levels to be narrated. This can be done by using a headset or the Playstation Eye microphone. Fans of the first game will be pleased to know that Stephen Fry has returned as the narrator.

As I mentioned before, more than 3.5 million levels were created after the release of the first game. Well, I have some good news for you; LBP2 has backwards compatibility, enabling the player to enjoy all those levels plus all the new additions. Also, uploading your own created level is a breeze. Playing other people’s creations is simple but unfortunately, the load times can be quite long.

Conclusion:
In conclusion, LittleBigPlanet 2 is an excellent game. The developers took a formula that worked and mixed it up a little to improve on that formula. You just won’t know what to expect while playing through a level. It could be a racing segment or even a segment that involves shooting. I was not able to test the PlayStation Move with this title but hopefully in the near future. Great for all ages, LBP2 is great for playing with friends or family.

Predominantly reviewed on PlayStation 3.