1991 was a historic year in the gaming world as Sonic The Hedgehog made his notoriously accelerated appearance for the first time on the Sega Magadrive. Many hours were plowed into ruthlessly attempting to reach the exciting conclusion with an excruciatingly difficult boss battle with the nefarious Dr Robotnik, and many more hours were squandered as I vainly attempted to acquire all the chaos emeralds throughout, all to no avail. The original Sonic title was followed by 2 very impressive sequels that really cemented Sonics status as a gaming icon, but things went down hill quicker then even Sonic himself could muster with some of the most misguided and self-destructive abominations, well…. ever! Sonic R, Sonic Spinball, Sonic Drift, Sonic 3D: Flickies Island……… and well you get the idea with that. But Sonic Generations could (and I stress the word COULD) redeem our quick footed friend and re-establish Sonic as a gaming icon once again.
Generations is returning to where Sonic has always been at its best and most comfortable, in 2D, and instantly making all of Sonics previous sins almost forgivable (almost) by granting veteran Sonic fans with the gift of reminiscing about the good old days, and how they’ve somehow been resurrected. Although it’s very much a more classic style Sonic title reminiscent of the 90’s heyday, it appears somehow fresh and original, especially after years of ill advised 3D interpretations. The 3D visuals havent been entirely abolished however, with Sonic attempting to make a frantic and accelerated escape from a rogue truck in one stage, and could actually prove to be a highlight for Generations. There are also returns of some familiar boss battles, but no news yet on whether doubled tailed fox Tails will be included. Sonic Generations is fast, frenzied and finally retaining the entertaining quality and speed that made Sonic a household name. Sonic Generations could prove to be the most defining moment for 15 years, but dont hold me to that.
Sonic Generations is released November 22, check out the link to watch the E3 trailer.
Can Sonic make a triumphant return? Do you even care any more? Let me know your thoughts and opinions, cheers.
“Whats that? Oh no!! Theres a deadly disease viciously circulating throughout are fair city, well damn and blast, I suppose we’d better make a hurried exit before we transform into flesh-eating mutants”. This is a very common scenario in the world of gaming horror and the foundation for which many survival horrors originate from, trapped in an impossible situation where you are forced survive in an utterly hopeless circumstance, so is Amy any different? In a sense, no, Amy still retains the tried and tested routine of a ravaged city overrun by zombie type creatures ready to disembowel you at any given opportunity, but where Amy stands out to its contemporaries is in its distinct approach to a very repetitive concept.
You play as Lana, an unfortunate individual trapped in the chaotic fictional locale of Silver City, accompanied by a minor known only as Amy. It’s your duty to escort this innocent (or so your lead to believe) child through the ravaged city, which is now inhabited by hordes of zombie-esqe creatures, so far, fairly undistinguished, but saving Amy isn’t just for Lana’s enormous sense of self-satisfaction but also for her own well-being. Lana has rather unfortunately contracted the infection which is rife within Silver City, but Amy is totally immune to the disease and acts as walking vaccine for Lana, as long as she’s within close proximity. Stray to far away from Amy however and something rather extraordinary occurs. Lana is capable of harnessing and utilizing the viral by impersonating the creatures which are rampant throughout, and avoid any unpleasant encounters with the snarling residents, but be wary as deviating for an extended period of time could lead to the virus taking over entirely.
Amy is a survival horror in the truest sense, totally stripped back. No guns with vast amounts of ammo, but rather pipes and 2×4’s will be your weapons against these unholy beasts. Amy is available for download in the Autumn. Click the link to watch the impressively creepy gameplay footage.
What are your first impressions of Amy? And do you think it’s a mistake to release it as download only? Let me know your thoughts, cheers.
In the vastly overpopulated gaming universe you can be guaranteed of many certainties, movie tie-ins will almost assuredly be woefully, unfulfilling disasters, their will be a zombie apocalypse themed game released on a monthly basis and aliens will never come in peace, as Xcom will highlight. But there is something different about these extraterrestrials, rather than leveling huge skyscrapers and eradicating vast populations of innocents, Xcom’s depicted aliens are little more cunning. Why announce your presence to the entire world so readily when you can invade in a far more subtle fashion and overthrow the planet one human at a time, and this is where you come in.
Commander William Carter is your name and protecting earth from the alien onslaught is your priority, but your up against it from the very beginning as it’s the aliens that are winning this confrontation. Your objective is to assemble a team of trained agents and send them to confront the laser gun wielding invaders with the intention of killing every last one of these unwanted guests, or perhaps not? Rather than just ruthlessly annihilating your adversary’s, you can take the risk of capturing your alien counterparts for the sole purpose of acquiring their technology and harnessing your own weapons and infantry, but taking such perilous actions in such immense battles could lead Commander Carter to a premature end.Before any chaos does ensue however, being the commander will grant you with the responsibilities to plan your attack to ensure that you and your agents not only win each individual fire fight, but to also claim a good haul of alien artifacts to aid you in future confrontations. Strategy is critical, as is the welfare and the training of your agents, some agents are good with weapons others are skilled in recon but all level up after each battle. Getting the balance right between your varied team of agents is paramount, so plan your attacks accordingly. Xcom wont be released until March 2012, but this 60’s style FPS/RPG combo is already shaping up to be a surprise hit for next year.
Check out the link and watch these slimy extraterrestrials in action.
Do the ideas in Xcom appeal to you? Let me know what you think, cheers.
Over its previous 2 incarnations, Assassins Creed has steadily improved on almost every aspect of Ubisofts mammoth stealth executiner, the difference in quality between the original Assassins Creed and Brotherhood for example, is startling. Cumbersome controls, sluggish gameplay and a thoroughly boring story were all too present in the original installment, but due to both Assassins Creed 2 and Brotherhoods innovations the series has clambered to new heights and achieved the success it so desperately deserved, so can Revelations produce further innovations?
Revelations mantra appears to be action, action and more action, which will leave many fans with a slight tinge of disappointment, as it seems the stealthier sections will play less of a role (which doesn’t make Ezio an Assassin then surely?). During one segment, Ezio annihilates an entire harbour with a flamethrower (yes you read that correctly) which is attached to a ship, after which Ezio launches across the harbour to slaughter anyone who was fortunate/unfortunate enough to survive Ezio previous violent attack, and mercilessly slaughter them before zip lining onto another boat and making a muted exit from the previous carnage.
Ezio isn’t shy when it comes to brutality, and he’s certainly comfortable with explosives too. Ezio can both purchase and create he’s own grenades for a variety of different results, sum will create smoke allowing you to drop in unannounced and stealthily take out enemy’s or use more potent grenades for a more instant and devastating attack’s. Free running is mercifully just as important in Revelations as it was in previous Assassins, and with the added hookblade which enables Ezio to zip effortlessly across Constantinople, things should move quickly and effectively. Revelations certainly isn’t subtle in its approach to violence, its frantic, aggressive and feeling more akin to an Uncharted sequel rather than Assassins, but moving away from the surreptitious and less brash gameplay is a huge gamble, and not one I’m convinced Ubisoft can pull off.
Check out the link to watch the E3 trailer.
Does the all out action gameplay sound like a good direction for Assassins Creed to go? Leave a comment and let me know your thoughts, cheers.
Zombies have become synonymous with video games to such an extent that its difficult for any developer to do anything new and credible to a rather stagnant and stale sub genre, Resident Evil 5 implemented a more action inspired zombie fest whereas Dead Rising 2 was more about decapitating packs of the undead in a variety of imaginative ways. But Dead Island isn’t attempting to alter the overall genetics that make a traditional zombie game, but rather fuse many different elements into one gory entity. Dead Island will unsurprisingly see you trapped on a tropical island with hordes of the undead attempting to spoil any chance you had of enjoying any quite time with that bikini clad beauty you were enticing with alcoholic beverages, and its up to you to maim, decapitate, electrocute and destroy all zombies that have the unfortunate luck of shambling towards you.
Crucially, Dead Island is about surviving, sure you can butcher numerous former tourists with your electrified machete until it becomes mind numbingly tedious (which it wont), but be wary that weapons, particularly ammo, are scarce, and with such a vast island being besieged by numerous cannibals you could very quickly become overwhelmed by their sheer numbers, and armed with only a baseball bat and your strong constitution’s. As you progress through the nightmarish island you will find moments of tranquility in the form of safe houses which are scattered all over, which are places specifically designed to give the player a break from the hellish surroundings, create and modify weapons and meet contrasting survivors who you can choose to either help out for unique bonuses or ignore entirely so as not to risk your own life, the choice is yours.
Another exciting aspect to Dead Island is the 4 player co-operative play, which allows other participants to drop in and out of the game despite your progress (preferably not dropping out as I’m desperately overwhelmed). Dead Island may not be pushing boundaries with their own take on the repetitive zombie apocalypse scenario, but why does it need too? As long as there’s an abundance of blood, guts and plenty of intriguing and fun alternative ways of killing your foes, then very little else matters.
Dead Island is released in September, click the link to watch “that” notorious trailer.
Will Dead Island live up to expectation? Or has it been too massively hyped up? Let me know your thoughts, cheers.
Aliens vs Predator was a great concept, that was very sadly, poorly executed. From the static and monotonous locations to the cumbersome controls (specifically with regards to the Alien missions), AVP was a throughly underwhelming game for 2 movie monster legends, but redemption maybe at hand (for one series at least) in the form of Aliens: Colonial Marines. Continuing where James Cameron’s spectacular Aliens left off, you take control of a select group of Marines sent in to uncover the paradox of the disappeared colony and the former rescue team, which opens up the possibilities to explore familiar locales featured in the blockbuster movie. You can scout the air ducts where Vasquez and Gorman sacrificed themselves to save their teammates, do you want to explore the area where Bishop’s entrails saturate the floor of the docking station after the brutal attack from the hands/tail of the Alien queen? You can, it’s even possible to locate the derelict ship which housed the Alien embryos from the original film.
But one of the most exciting ventures in Colonial Marines, is the proposition of co-operative play, bestowing you and your friends the unique opportunity to share the trepidation experienced by the franchises marines. From the pulse rifles to the now infamous motion tracking, they all assist in recreating the anxiety you felt witnessing this sci-fi classic. It’s difficult to believe that with such an abundance of familiarities and nods to the movies that fans and gamers alike wont be eager to destroy hordes of Xenomorphs, but will it be worth waiting for?
Aliens: Colonial Marines will be released next year, click the link to watch the trailer.
Could this be the Alien game we’ve all been waiting for? Let me know your thoughts.
Arkham City is Huge, it’s a living breathing albeit violent city, there’s almost nowhere you can’t explore, no thug you can brutalize, camouflage yourself in the shadows and become almost unstoppable, venture into the light and you could find yourself instantly outnumbered and hopelessly outgunned, but you wont be alone. Not only will you be joined by the boy wonder himself Robin, but Catwoman will also be a playable character in Arkham City, allowing you to experience more of the dark side in a particularly nefarious world as she joins forces with the caped crusader. Her sole purpose is to break up Batman’s constant battering of enemy’s and bestow the player with other more intriguing and alluring ways to defeat thugs. Whereas Batman is very heavy-handed in his approach to subduing enemy combatants, Catwoman is far more dignified in her approach to vanquishing adversary’s, rather than just barbarically pounding thugs to a bloody pulp, Catwoman is more teasing, alluring enemy’s in close before smashing all 2 inches of her hill into an opponents pupil.
Catwoman also posses an abundance of unique abilities that are infinitely varied to what Batman has at his disposal. From quickly ascending walls and flipping onto enemy’s to terrorising opponents with her bullwhip. Shes quick-witted, seductive, devious and brutal in equal measure, and with the added advantage of being able to upgrade her repertoire of skills, Catwoman’s claws become all the more dangerous. Besides Catwoman there’s also an extensive wealth of super villains for Batman to THWACK, including the glass bottled monocle wearing Penguin, Twoface and the ever cryptic Riddler, with the Joker playing a more subdued behind the scenes villain. There are many games that are still unreleased that are being tipped for the converted GOTY award, but I wouldn’t bet against Batman Arkham City claiming top prize.
Batman Arkham City is released October 21. Check out the link to watch Catwoman in action.
How impressed are you with Arkham City? Do you think it can really outdo Arkham Asylum? Let me know your thoughts.