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April – Month in Review

May 6, 2010 1 comment
SPlinter Cell

The writing's on the wall

For most people April was a welcome relief in the release schedules finally giving gamers a chance to catch up after the best start to a year ever. Depending on your platform though it wasn’t a completely barren month and definitely had a greater number of decent games than 2009. A theme for this month is perhaps games that have been previously released on other platforms or should have been released as DLC. Read more…

Next Generation Consoles – Must Have Features

Xbox 360 EliteWith Microsoft and Sony heralding the arrival of their motion controllers for this generation of hardware, the next generation seems like a very long way off. However, for those boffins that are beavering away in secret labs the feature set for the new consoles is probably being nailed down even as I write. What is likely to make the cut next time around? Read more…

Review: Wii Classic Controller Pro

Classic Controller Pro box shot

Annoyingly only available in black

Is the latest controller from Nintendo an admission that they need to support more standard methods of control for the hardcore gamer or a way to exploit those that have already bought the original Classic Controller? Making it exclusively in black is a sure way to encourage people to buy a black Nunchuck regardless of the logic of that first sentence. Purchased from certain retailers as part of the Monster Hunter Tri bundle it won’t put too large a dent in your wallet. Read more…

Super Mario Galaxy 2 Looks Awesome

Destructoid have posted a new video of Super Mario Galaxy 2 and it looks proper good, even if it does look like just more levels for the first game. Does it get you stoked?

I think there must be something wrong with me though, because I’m not really excited

Goomba's going to get you

about it. To give you the history I didn’t have an NES, so I didn’t play any of those Mario games and whilst I owned a SNES, I didn’t really get into Super Mario World, although I did play it a fair bit. When the N64 came out though I was all about Mario 64 and my wife and I played it relentlessly collecting all the stars and no game since then has ever given us as much shared enjoyment. Mario Sunshine missed for us because the difficulty just seemed to ruin the joy of making Mario jump around in his environment.

When Mario Galaxy came out though it seemed Nintendo were back on form and we avidly started playing again. Except we didn’t collect all the stars and in fact we collected less than half and I’m not sure why.

Have we just got bored with the Italian plumber or is it just the 3D platformer that’s grown old? Certainly I haven’t really returned to the genre, except for Banjo Kazooie when it hit XBLA. Before I buy the next Mario game I vow to try and return to the galaxy and finish it and find out whether I can rediscover the joy the jumping on goombas.

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April Release Schedule

After the deluge of the first quarter of 2010, April seems like a well-earned rest, although there are a few games coming that will definitely be worth your attention.

BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger

Voted by some in North America as their favourite fighter of last year, Europe finally gets a chance to try out this spiritual successor to Guilty Gear. Despite a deep and

BlazBlue

Bang Specials

rewarding combat system, the game makes it easy on new comers, by mapping many of the special moves to the right analogue stick. If you get the special edition, which is pretty cheap, you also get a DVD full of tips and how to perform each character’s moves. Not as many characters or unlockables as Street Fighter, but definitely worth checking out.

Tom Clancy’s: Splinter Cell Conviction

The 360 hasn’t got an exclusive for a couple of months whilst the PS3 seems to have been awash with them. If rumours are true this might not be as exclusive as you may might have thought. Anyway, the latest game in the Splinter Cell series is a break from the strictly stealth based gameplay of previous games and features many new game play mechanics, co-op and competitive multi player, so worth watching as there’s a lot of game here.

Monster Hunter Tri

Capcom are hoping that putting the game on Wii, dispensing with Friend Codes and

Monster Hunter Tri

Lagiacrus apparently

enabling Wii Speak, will finally see this franchise gain some traction in the west. It also supports the new classic controller, which I want very much. If you fancy hunting enormous beasts online with your friends and they haven’t sold their Wii’s by now, then this could be for you.

Super Street Fighter IV

Whether this should be thought of a sequel or a downloadable update, there’s no denying that Capcom have included a lot of new content. You get 10 new fighters, new specials and a new online mode featuring lobbies for the first time. Probably the fighter of the year (again) for many people.

2010 FIFA World Cup

We all say we won’t buy it, but we probably will. Just 6 months before the last FIFA game EA are releasing their world cup tie in. It features all the teams from qualification and all the stadia from the finals and they’ve remodelled the faces, making a big difference to likes of Crouch. Hopefully, there will be some new online features included to stop the dirty quitters ruining our world cup.

Other games you may enjoy in April include Afterburner Climax, Clash of the Titans, Dead to Rights: Retribution, God of War Collection, Iron Man 2, Lego Harry Potter, Neir, No More Heroes: Desperate Struggle, Sakura Wars: So Long My Love, Samurai Shodown SEN, Supreme Commander 2 and Warioware: DIY.

Not quite such an empty month after all.

First Spider Man: Shattered Dimensions Trailer

March 30, 2010 1 comment

Gamespot have the scoop on the Spider Man game and it looks kind of interesting and kind of scary at the same time. The rules for making super hero games changed last

Spider Man: Web of Shadows

Spider Man's last outing

August with the release of Batman, so can Activision take lessons from that and create a game worthy of the Amazing Spider Man?

It seems that developer’s Beenox (previously did Monsters vs. Aliens and Guitar Hero: Smash Hits) have decided to make things hard on themselves, delivering multiple takes on the Spider Man character. The dimensions of the title refer to the four different versions of the Spider Man character you will play as and two of those were revealed in this trailer. The two revealed dimensions are those of  the classic red/ blue Amazing Spider Man and the relatively unknown Noire Spider Man.

The different dimensions don’t just affect your threads, they will also change the game style with the amazing version looking very classic, but the Noire version is a much more stealth oriented game.

With two more variations still to be revealed, will these also have a different style in both graphics and gameplay? Are Beenox trying to make four different games? This is a feat beyond even the most talented development teams so it will be extremely interesting to watch this game. Bobby Kotick admitted sub par previous Spider Man games and promised a heavy hitter this time round. Let’s hope the plucky upstarts are up to the challenge, after all who believed in Rocksteady this time last year?

Ogre Battle 64 Hits Virtual Console

Not the first Ogre title to hit the virtual console, but it is the first N64 game for a very

Ogre Battle 64 Cover Art

Cover art from the North American release of Ogre Battle 64

long time and the first time this game has been available in Europe. A double celebration helped by the fact that it’s also one of the best strategy games on any console.

Ogre Battle 64: Person of Lordly Caliber to give it its full and frankly daft title was released in Japan in 1999 in Japan and 2000 in North America. It was developed by Quest who developed several other titles in the Ogre Battle series, before several key members joined Square. Those same people went on to work on the Final Fantasy Tactics series of games, so you can see why the Ogre Battle series has been so revered.

I’ll hopefully get some time to play the game and I’ll report back in a few days.