Friday 29 June 2012

Google Nexus Tablet

Got Google?

Hot off the back of Microsoft's announcement of their Surface tablet last week, ASUS dropped the bombshell they’re teaming up with Google to release the Nexus 7.

Looking to replicate their smartphone success with their latest tablet offering, the Nexus 7 is set to be dinky, streamlined & most importantly a lot more affordable than its peers (er, hello?! At least half the price of an iPad); without compromising on appearance & abilities. Fighting talk, huh?

Google with ASUS are laying down the gauntlet with an affordable yet CeXy tablet. Will this new contender be the one to make Apple, Amazon & Microsoft nervous?

The Bling Bling

The Jelly Bean OS looks colourful, modern, easy to use & dare I say it, a bit more fun than an iPad.

Those who have had their hands on the device say you wouldn’t tell the low cost from it's appearance, the tablet’s design feels high end with a CeXy rubberized, textured back which makes it easier to hold (and we all know what slippery buggers they can be.)

The Nexus 7 has a shiny, silver rimmed 7 inch display with a smooth & clean reacting interface. Whilst it may not be retina quality, its clear, colourful & crisp. And more smudge resistant, which is HUGE news to me.

The tablet weighs 0.74 pounds, is 0.41 inches thick (the new iPad is 0.37 inches), and measures 7.8 inches tall by 4.7 inches wide.

And more importantly, Emoji has also been added as an optional key set. It's the little things in life.

The Nitty Gritty

Chugging away inside the Nexus 7 is a quad-core Tegra 3 CPU ,1GB of RAM, and 8GB or 16GB of onboard storage (the higher GB for more cash monies, obviously)

1.2mp front facing camera, but you can only use that for Skype & Google hangouts. Why you do that, Google? So frustrating. All phones, tablets, gadgets should have front and back facing cameras. Call me vain, I don’t care. BRB must tweetagram about it.

But that’s not all, there’s no camera app on the device. Word has it, you can find a third-party replacement but most of the popular camera apps don’t show up in the Play Store. Weep.

The Nexus 7 has Micro USB Connector, Bluetooth 4.0, 8hrs battery life without heating up like a hot water bottle when you ask it to do more than 2 things at a time, Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n, and has a GPS chip, NFC, gyroscope, compass, and accelerometer but no Micro SD slot.

But for a tablet this price, who’d complain?


I’ve never been able to afford a tablet. No, that’s a lie. I’ve always spent my money before I could save up for a tablet. But, the Google Nexus 7 is one I would strongly consider. It looks like it might be possible to create a low priced tablet, without scrimping on functionality & design.

Although I don’t think it’ll surpass the iPad, (Apple fans are notoriously loyal, y'see) I think it’s great competition for Apple and Amazon.

To be honest, If I REALLY need to take a picture I should use a camera or my phone.
Because this looks a little ridiculous:


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Friday 22 June 2012

CeX Art on the London Underground

If you're in London and passing along Platform 3 at Camden Town tube station, no doubt off to one of the many CeX shop in the area, you'll see a poster from CeX's very own Master of Pencils, Edward Hathaway. Ed also creates most of the designs you see gracing your local CeX shop. Look out for this design as it's bound to be in your local CeX shop soon:)

 Platform 3 at Camden Town


Ed Says "It's about traditional media and traditional values and how they translate to a digital "Cloud based" environment. The possibility of digital production being available to a wider audience- cottage industry on a global scale. How the meaning of "hand made," "hand produced" or even"craft" changes in the digital realm and hints at the possibility of a return to supposedly traditional values such as the reputation of a producer/seller/maker in a so-called global village.... Perhaps the availability of information as an egalitarian tool."

Click to enlarge.

The poster is on Platform 3 until 27 June and is part of the Art on the Underground exhibition.

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Tuesday 19 June 2012

Phone Unlocking at CeX

Trust CeX to unlock your phones to use any network in a jiffy at selected CeX stores across the UK and Ireland. The CeX phone unlocking service is done in store in minutes and comes with the peace of mind of a 12-month warranty that your phone will remain unlocked all compatible networks. Unlocking starts from £10 (€10 in Dublin) and is available in the following stores, with more stores being added very soon….

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Thursday 14 June 2012

EA E3 Press Conference

Here it is. CeX’s final press event coverage of E3 2012. Today I’m going to bring you up to speed with EA’s offerings including some blockbuster titles that will surely get you pumped for the upcoming year. EA are somewhat of a love-hate company with some gamers hating the giants while others accepting their ability to bring high-brand and quality to the gaming market. This is what EA had in store for us. 

The conference began with a bang as footage of Dead Space 3 hit the screen. Dead Space is my absolute favourite modern horror franchise clearly inspired by the brilliant Resident Evil 4 so I was very excited to see what was in store for Isaac in his third outing. The new footage unfortunately wasn’t what I was expecting. We saw Isaac crash land on an ice planet and do battle cooperatively against necromorph foes. It resembled Lost Planet very much and the idea of cooperative play in Dead Space doesn’t appeal to me because it will take away the game’s horror appeal. The playable demo pretty much confirmed my fears with a set piece segment showed off where Isaac and his partner had to hold off enemy forces while trying to destroy a malfunctioning drill threatening to rip them apart. Immediately after the pair are confronted by a group of enemy soldiers and Isaac rolled into cover (sigh another cover-based shooter I see) and proceeded to defend himself. The demo concluded with our two protagonists doing battle with a giant Necromorph monster before being inhaled and swallowed whole. The action looked larger than life and I’m sure this will be a huge title but at the same time I’m hoping what I initially love about Dead Space is not lost in transition. Dead Space 3 is slated for February 2013.

Madden NFL13 was next up on the big screen showing off the new mechanics and physics present. It looked like NFL13 took a leaf out of FIFA’s book by elaborating and implemented the player physics engine, something the series desperately needed. This Infinity engine certainly looked at home in NFL13. A bunch of new game modes including Connected Career were demonstrated suggesting Madden NFL13 will have unprecedented levels of interconnectivity between players while at the same time enhancing an already rich and enjoyable experience for American Football fans.

Talented development team Maxis were up next and they revealed SimCity Social for Facebook and a brand new SimCity for the PC. The latter looked especially entertaining with a brand new Glass Box engine employed by Maxis to revolutionize the strategy-simulator experience. A quick demo showed off vibrant cities coming to life and fans of the SimCity should certainly be looking forward to this.

Following the SimCity demo Peter Moore and DiCE representatives came on stage to discuss Battlefield 3’s new Premium Account option. Similar to Call of Duty Elite, gamers will be able to buy a subscription to obtain extra content, gain access to new maps, weapons, dog tags and all those other extra goodies. On top of that 5 new expansion packs will be arriving to Battlefield 3 over the next nine months.

MMO fans should be pretty pumped as Bioware came on stage next to reveal all new content for Star Wars: The Old Republic. A brand new space mission titled ‘Space Mission Assault’ will be available alongside a new operation ‘Terror From Beyond’, a new companion the ‘HK-51 Assassin Droid’, a new playable species ‘Cathar’, a new warzone ‘Ancient Hypergates’, a new world to explore ‘Makeb’, all intertwined with a new level cap and a host of new abilities. 

Medal of Honor: Warfighter was demonstrated next by the game’s executive producer Greg Goodrich. A quick playable demo went through all the things we’ve come to expect from a warzone based FPS – there were plenty of weapons, explosions, guns and because it ran on Frostbite 2, it felt all too familiar to Battlefield 3.

A quick look at EA Sports was next with a whole bunch of social features for Madden and FIFA coming to Facebook and Smartphones. Then FIFA 13 was shown off in a bit more detail including an in-depth look at precision dribbling and a whole host of the new features present. Rather surprisingly and to my delight, EA proceeded to announce a partnership with UFC and welcomed the President of UFC Dana White onto the stage to discuss the new possibilities for the franchise. I’ve been a massive UFC fan for a long time now and even though the games have been thoroughly enjoyable so far, I believe EA Sports can take the UFC experience to a whole new level.

My all time favourite racing game is Burnout Paradise. With this in mind, upon seeing the announcement of a new Need for Speed game subtitled Most Wanted ‘a game by Criterion’, I was incredibly pumped. A quick trailer showed off some fast paced driving and a whole host of cool cars and I’m really hoping this game gives me the same wonderful experience I had with Burnout. A quick playable demo showed off an open world racer that resembled Hot Pursuit, Criterion’s last venture in the Need For Speed franchise, but here’s to hoping this will be an even better racer than before.

The conference ended with Crytek announcing the third installment in their fantastic FPS series Crysis. A playable demo showed what we’d expect from Crysis 3, beautiful graphics, fantastic environments filled with plenty of bad guys to take down. If the other two are anything to go by, this will be one hell of game.

So there you have it, EA were straight to the point with their press event and I totally admire that. They came in with a purpose, to show off a bunch of cool games and they did just that. I’m by no means blown away by these announcements, but they look impressive and definitely have potential. EA are so huge in the video game industry that it’s hard not to notice their efforts and with that in mind, I have no doubt these games will all excel in their own way.

So there you have it for the E3 press events of 2012. Thank you so much for checking out CeX’s coverage and I hope this has inspired you all to go do a little bit of your own research to check out in more detail what the video game industry has on offer in the upcoming year.

Igor Kharin.

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Tuesday 12 June 2012

Ubisoft E3 Press Conference

After Ubisoft single-handedly saved Nintendo and pretty much spearheaded Sony’s conference, I was so intrigued I had to watch their main stage-show. This was in part to see whether more information would be revealed about the games already shown and to check out a rumoured brand new IP in the making by the French developers. Here’s a round up of everything that went down Ubisoft’s way.


The conference began with a group of dancers introducing Just Dance 4 and then Flo-Rida jumped on stage for a quick performance (take that Usher!). Ubisoft’s host for the evening Aisha Tyler gracefully arrived on stage and congratulated Flo-Rida on a ‘hot’ performance and moved onto emphasize Just Dance 4 as the number 1 dance game, but without showing any extra content or footage.

The big guns were out almost immediately with Far Cry 3 next on the big screen as Dan Hay and his lead designer began discussing what we already know about Far Cry 3 from last year’s announcement at E3 2011. The new footage showed the lead protagonist Jason amidst the local tribe on the island as he is initiated as one of them. Then Jason addressed the people and swore that the enemies invading their island will all fall and their freedom will be restored. Gameplay featured next as the player swam across to another island and grabbed what looked like a patrol guard, threw him in the water and stabbed him. Upon climbing up I was very impressed with the gorgeous visuals of Far Cry 3, it really looked like a beautiful game. The action got a little bit more heated as Jason attacked a camp of enemies, only to be stabbed from behind by Vaas, the main enemy – the game then turned into a weird psycho trip as Jason must have been dreaming or hallucinating from the stomach wound. The gameplay ends with Vaas saying “you are me Jason, and I am, you.” I am definitely looking forward to whether this will be more than a generic first-person shooter.

After a very successful showing at Microsoft’s media briefing, Splinter Cell: Blacklist was next for Ubisoft. The release trailer ‘welcome to forth echelon’ was up on the big screen for the audience. The trailer showed Sam Fisher enter an enemy complex and rescue a mystery target. Plenty of action and gadgets were on show in this fast-paced footage, all of which looked fantastic and made me want Splinter Cell that much more. More content was shown during Microsoft’s press brief so if you want, check that out.

Marvel Avengers Battle for Earth made its way onto the big screen straight after, showing off the incredible cast of characters and carnage we all expect from an Avengers game. My first impression was I actually didn’t like the art-style but that can easily be overlooked if the gameplay is enjoyable. The trailer had Wolverine take on Venom, Spider-Man swinging through New York to do battle with Magneto and then the camera panned out to reveal the Avengers standing on top of a building looking towards what seemed like an Alien spaceship and subsequent invasion of earth.

With that Ubisoft moved onto the Wii U and one of the most popular current platform franchises, Rayman. Senior Game Manager Michael Micholic jumped on stage with his team to demonstrate Rayman Legends for Nintendo’s new console. This demo was all about showing off the Wii U’s capabilities with Rayman, including first of all, the introduction of Murphy, the character specifically built for the Wii U tablet controller. Murphy essentially acted as a support character helping to move items across the level and grab a hold of bad guys while Rayman and his buddies could attack them. Rayman Legends looked a lot grittier than Origins, but it was still vibrant and had that same charm we have all grown to love. Up to 5 players will be able to play Rayman Legends on the Wii U using the Wii U tablet, pro controllers and Wii remotes.

Next up was what I considered to be the most impressive title for Wii U, the first-person shooter ZombiU. While no gameplay was shown (check out Nintendo’s conference for that) a quick trailer showed worldwide panic forming as the zombie apocalypse consumed humanity, which is pretty standard for this genre.

Ubisoft then recycled the same highlight reel we saw during Nintendo’s conference that depicts all the titles for Wii U. This included Assassin’s Creed 3, Rayman Legends, Avengers Battle for Earth, Just Dance 4, Your Shape, Sports Connection and ZombiU.

Arguably Ubisoft’s most popular franchise Assassin’s Creed was next up as a trailer for number 3 hit the big screen. The footage showed our assassin doing battle during the American Revolution and lead producer Francois Pelland came on stage to show playable gameplay from AC3. The demo began with our new assassin Connor swinging and climbing across trees as he stalked a group of deer. When he got close enough Connor unsheathed his bow and took down one of the deer but as he moved closer to finish the job, he was attacked by a group of wolves. After quickly countering their pounces Connor finished the predators and moved on through the snow. Upon accepting a new mission to infiltrate a particular fort and rescue someone, Connor came across a group of soldiers, which are eliminated in beautiful fashion thanks to the fluid gameplay of Assassin’s Creed 3. The combos and reversals reminded me heavily of Batman’s gameplay and this is by no means a bad thing. The action continued as a soldier tried to run away but the player chased him down and put a tomahawk straight into his back. When Connor finally got into the fort his goal was to assassinate the fort leader and with numerous ways to handle this goal, it was really exciting waiting to see how the player went about it. It was actually rather anticlimactic with it being a short gameplay demo as Connor blew up a bunch of exploding barrels then chased after the target and stabbed him in the back, ending the demo there.

Shootmania gameplay was next for Ubisoft as the event took a small step back from all the ridiculously awesome AAA titles present. This is a game played on the E-Sport circuit for major league gaming and with two all-star teams arriving on stage comprised of world champion Counter Striker players, this was sure to be an interesting divergence from what we’ve seen so far. A bunch of quick rounds were played showing off Shootmania but without playing it I can’t really point to anything that makes this game seem anything other than a generic FPS game. The E-Sports theme was rounded up with a quick highlight reel showing off Trials Evolution, The Settlers Online and Ghost Recon Online.

To round off the conference Yves Guillemot arrived on stage to discuss the future of Ubisoft. Finally, this was the fantastic new IP I have been hearing about from Ubisoft. Watch Dogs was revealed for the first time to the public with a beautifully envisioned trailer. This trailer discussed an alternate modern society in which all of America is run through a ctOS computer system that runs everything from trains, traffic lights to gathering personal and biological information of humans as a commodity. The notions of hacking and terrorism were clearly emphasized as the trailer ended and Jonathan Morin stepped out on stage to discuss this new IP. After a quick introduction and emphasis surrounding the entire city’s infrastructure will be at your fingertips to exploit and hack, Mr. Morin jumped straight into the gameplay. Watch Dogs looked like a clever mix of Grand Theft Auto and Deus Ex, with a very cyber punk artistic style present. The main character Aiden was able to hack into every single person he walked near, seeing all his or her darkest secrets and skills. A clever use of a signal jammer allowed Aiden to sneak into a charity gallery where he was looking for someone. After letting himself be known the player made a dash out of the building and used the traffic jammer to cause a horrific pile up, where he proceeded to engage with enemies and then find his target in one of the cars. After killing the guy, the demo ended and the presentation for Ubisoft concluded on a fantastic note with Watch Dogs being one of E3’s most exciting announcements.

With that came the end of what I consider so far to be by a LONG way the best presentation I have seen so far. With EA still to come, I doubt that they can top Ubisoft’s brilliant line up of games. Consistency I believe is really the key here with high profile titles across a wide variety of platforms with a brilliant new IP slotted in right at the end to get the crowd going. Well done Ubisoft, I thoroughly look forward to each and every game announced today (apart from Just Dance 4!).

Igor Kharin.

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Monday 11 June 2012

Nintendo E3 Press Conference

Coming into E3 it was obvious Nintendo were in a good position with new content to show off because they were the first company to release their ‘next-generation’ console. While Microsoft and Sony unveiled some exciting new games and software, a new machine always has a certain aura surrounding it. With this in mind I was prepared to be blown away, even though my initial response to the Wii U wasn’t wholly positive. Can Nintendo really support their new hardware with fantastic exclusive titles that can appease both casual and hardcore gamers?

Nintendo’s conference began with a cute introduction video of Shigeru Miyamoto relaxing in his dressing room before his time to jump on stage. As the camera panned around the Nintendo legend, a group of Pikmin wobbled their way across the dressing room floor before accidentally dropping into Miyamoto’s jacket pocket. He then proceeded to leave the dressing room and come on stage to rapturous applause – deservedly so may I add. Using AR the conference camera began to pick out members of the audience and put Pikmin all around them, receiving lots of laughs and applause from the rest of the hall.

With the help of a translator Miyamoto moved swiftly onto the Wii U, discussing the importance of their new machine to not be dependant on the TV in your living room. With this came the announcement of Pikmin 3, a highly anticipated title from one of Nintendo’s most popular modern franchises. A quick playable demo showed groups of Pikmin getting involved in new activities like building. The new Rock Pikmin was also introduced and these cool little guys could be used to break down tough environments and objects. The Wii U game pad will constantly show a map that gives players a better vantage point of how and where to move their Pikmin. Players will be able to join forces with up to 4 leaders to coordinate and control the Pikmin forces in what Miyamoto describes as deeper and more intricate gameplay. Pikmin 3 certainly looked like it was coming along nicely and after 10 years since the original in the series, it’s about time Nintendo brought back these lovable critters.

The big man himself Reggie Fils-Aime was up on stage next to emphasize that there’s simply not enough time to discuss all of the Wii U’s media functionality with platforms like Youtube and Netflix alongside the games this conference, so Nintendo was going to concentrate on the latter for this hour. A guided presentation of the Wii U controller was demoed before moving onto the Wii U’s home board, the Miiverse. This will allow players to interact with each other in a very similar fashion to Sony’s PlayStation Home. Miiverse will soon become available for the Nintendo 3DS, PC’s and Internet enabled Smartphones.

The ideals of interaction with other players on a global scale were intertwined almost immediately with the announcement of New Super Mario Bros. U. A demo showing off NSMBU revealed a brand new item for the Mario Universe, an acorn that allowed players to glide like a flying squirrel across chasms. 

It was now time to talk about third-party titles for the Wii U with Martin Tremblay from Warner Bros. Studios arriving on stage to discuss Batman Arkham City Armoured Edition. On-screen footage and a demo showed the Wii U controller being used to organize Batman’s utility belt, tools and gadgets, along with using the camera on the controller for scanning for clues in detective mode.

Next up was Scribblenauts Unlimited, a fully-fledged HD console version of this excellent puzzle game. Now players will have the ability to make up their own unique concepts instead of merely putting in words and having objects appear. I really feel that this should be a downloadable title and will be very frustrated if this is a full RRP release for the Wii U because I see no reason why anyone would pay full price for this when they can buy it for pennies on iOS and the market place. 

A Wii U montage was shown after the Warner Bros. representative left the stage with Darksiders 2, Mass Effect 3, Tank! Tank! Tank!, Tekken Tag Tournament 2, Trine 2: Director’s Cut, Aliens Colonial Marines and Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor’s Edge all making the highlight reel.

More footage hit the big screen as Fils-Aime introduced Wii Fit U with a first-look featuring a calorie counter and clever use of the Wii U controller to enhance the games and exercises, as well as perform them without the actual use of your TV. Nintendo’s notion of social and healthy gaming continued as Sing was shown off next. Using the Wii U controller as a board for lyrics, this sing-along dance game allowed players to face their friends instead of the TV while they performed. Other players could also sing along and dance while the main player sang into the microphone itself.

It was time to take a break from the Wii U and with that it was Scott Moffitt’s turn to discuss Nintendo’s 3DS handheld. It struck me that Nintendo were certainly finding it difficult to stray any distance at all from their roots with the announcement of New Super Mario Bros. 2. Although Mr. Moffitt claimed this title to be very different to NSMBU on the home console, I found this very difficult to believe despite a new ‘gold’ mechanic that saw almost everything on screen turn to gold coins for Mario to collect. Little information was provided other than a US release date of August 19, so let’s hope for a similar date in Europe.

Mario was certainly very popular this conference with Paper Mario Sticker Star also revealed for the 3DS. Now this on the other hand did look very interesting with the RPG mechanics stemming from stickers that you find in your adventure and use during combat. I’ve always been a huge fan of the role-play elements of the Paper Mario franchise and I hope this will end up being a staple for 3DS owners.

Last but not least the 3DS title I have been most looking forward to was shown off – Luigi’s Mansion Dark Moon. Luigi’s Mansion is still considered a cult classic amidst GameCube enthusiasts and it’s an absolute delight to see the green plumber return in what was one of my all time favourite adventure franchises. As Mr. Moffitt left the stage another montage reel highlighted the third party content we should be looking forward to on 3DS including Castlevania: Lords of Shadow – Mirror of Fate, Disney Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion, Scribblenauts Unlimited (didn’t we just see this as well … oh gosh) and Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance.

Nintendo’s new partnership with Lego was up next with Lego City Undercover being premiered. This ended up being an open-world Lego adventure game with tributes being paid to Grand Theft Auto, Mario and even the Matrix during the short video clip.

Moving swiftly on it was apparent that Ubisoft were certainly the big development group this E3 with them once again stepping out onto another conference stage to show off more of their impressive titles. First up was Just Dance 4 showing off the Wii U controller’s unique ability to change the dance moves the 4 players holding Wiimotes had to do. Next on Ubisoft’s agenda was the highly anticipated ZombiU, which was easily the most exciting title announced for Nintendo’s new machine. The Wii U controller acted as an inventory device, radar scanner, hacking unit, sniper scope and just about everything else you can hope for in a survival horror game. I was truly impressed with the way the footage showed off the gameplay and I hope it plays as smoothly as it looked during the presentation. The Ubisoft portion of the conference ended with a quick highlight reel of other titles coming out for the Wii U including Assassin’s Creed 3, Rabbids Land, Sports Connection, Rayman Legends, Your Shape Fitness Evolved 2013 and a Marvel Avengers title.

Finally Fils-Aime revealed Nintendo Land and allowed Mr. Eguchi (the producer behind Animal Crossing, Wii Sports and Wii Sports Resort) to elaborate on Nintendo’s new virtual property. Mimicking a theme park, you will be able to take your Mii to this resort where rides, attractions and games are shaped and influenced by some of Nintendo’s most iconic franchises – an example would be Luigi’s Ghost Mansion, which plays like a mix of Bomberman and Pac-Man. Once again, while these mini games might be cute and enjoyable, I believe Nintendo don’t quite understand that very similar mini games are available on tablets and Smartphones, so I don’t quite understand why people would waste their time playing these games.

Nintendo Land ended a pretty dismal conference from Nintendo. I felt that Nintendo simply can’t move into the future and constantly rely on us gamers to enjoy the same experiences over and over again. Ubisoft pretty much threw Nintendo a lifeline this event with some fantastic titles including ZombiU but I don’t really feel many people are that excited to play Nintendo’s first-party titles like New Super Mario Bros again and again. The Wii U while impressive on certain levels is yet to entice me, especially considering I know that this machine is only fractionally stronger than the Xbox 360, a current generation device. What will happen when Microsoft and Sony announce their new machines next year, well I’ll tell you, I’m 100% sure the aforementioned hardware will blow the Wii U straight out of the water, especially considering the PlayStation Vita and PlayStation 3 are already pretty much producing the same type of dual-content that Nintendo are pushing with their Wii U tablet controller.

Ultimately I predict a storm brewing for Nintendo because the gap in the market they so cleverly found using the Wii has now been filled with social gaming through Smartphones, SmartTV and tablets, which all provide the same experiences the Wii did, but for a whole load cheaper. Trying to plug away at those same consumers will prove ineffective this time round, which will be a huge blow for Nintendo. With that in mind, I don’t think the Wii U can offer something special that gamers will feel is a staple for their video gaming experience.

Igor Kharin.

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Friday 8 June 2012

Sony E3 Press Conference

Welcome back to my feature recap of the second press event of E3. After what I consider to be Microsoft’s absolutely poorest showing since I can remember, it shouldn’t be very difficult at all for Sony to lay down a concrete event full of great content for PlayStation hardware owners. I assumed that this event would be very Vita heavy since a lot of PlayStation 3 exclusives have already been announced prior to this event like Sony’s equivalent to Super Smash Bros and God of War Ascension. Nevertheless, here is my summary of what went down.

Sony’s press event opened in beautiful fashion with a terrific montage highlighting some of Sony’s biggest games already released and coming soon. Immediately after Sony President Jack Tretton arrived on stage to discuss the fantastic connection PlayStation has to its audience. He pointed out Kaz Hirai, the man responsible for the construction of Sony’s entertainment branch and really paid tribute to the gamers themselves for continuing to support Sony. Tretton then made way for the first game to be shown, Quantic Dream’s highly anticipated new IP after Heavy Rain.

Titled as Beyond, the audience was clearly very pleased to hear that Quantic’s new project was well under way. It was also announced that Ellen Page will be playing the lead role Jodi Holmes and in-game footage showed off Jodi as she was being questioned by a police officer. A real sense of tension was present in the clip and it’s clear that Jodi has some sort of psychic powers as a cup of coffee went flying across the room when the officer tried to touch her. A breathtaking montage concluded Quantic’s presentation of what is undoubtedly going to be one of Sony’s prized titles.

Tretton continued Sony’s conference by discussing PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale, or as I like to call it ‘Sony Smash Bros’. Sony’s new brawler will be available for the Vita and will also be cross-compatible between the home console and handheld device. A quick demonstration showed off a 4-player battle between Kratos, Sweet Tooth, Sly Cooper and Fat Princess. The aim was to charge up your super meter and use their respective super move to get kills. With three levels of super to charge up, the stronger moves are obviously more deadly. Very cool interaction between the players and the environment occurred as the Hydra from God of War 1 burst through the floor and started attacking players mid game. The game looks incredibly similar to Super Smash Bros and with such an expert group of game designers behind this project, expect it to be a staple multiplayer experience on the PlayStation 3 and Vita. To conclude the PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale presentation, the team behind the project announced two new characters to the roster, Nathan Drake from Uncharted and Big Daddy from Bioshock.

Jack Tretton emphasized the importance of cross-play and the idea of using Vita as a cross-controller. A new DLC pack for LittleBigPlanet 2 that will allow players to use the Vita in conjunction with the game was announced with brand new story, collectables and typical LBP goodies.

Tretton moved swiftly onto the PlayStation Network and the brilliant list of exclusive independent games on the online platform. New games like Dyad, Papo & Yo and The Unfinished Swan are all exciting titles coming to the Network in the future. The PlayStation Plus horn was blown next and a quick recap of all the free games and pounds saved using the service was cheekily mentioned and a free 1-year membership was given to every single attendant of the conference – lucky.

The conference began leaning towards the PlayStation Vita as digitally exclusive titles for the Vita will also continue expanding the handheld’s portfolio and PlayStation 1 classics will also be coming soon. Media application including Youtube will also arrive on Vita. On a more impressive note, Call of Duty: Black Ops: Declassified was announced for the handheld, meaning for the first time a proper AAA first-person shooter title will be available in the palm of your hands, very exciting. Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation was next to be revealed for the Vita with for the first time, a female protagonist. Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation will also be part of a limited edition Vita bundle that includes a crystal white machine, a 4GB memory card and the game.

Ubisoft continued their software presentation by coming on stage to show off Assassin’s Creed III itself. A new playable demo took lead protagonist Connor to the high seas as he controlled a ship and took down other vessels using the cannons on the ship. After a dramatic battle on the water the ships link and the demo finished with Connor jumping across ready for melee action. Assassin’s Creed III will be released October 30th 2012 and also with a special PlayStation 3 hardware bundle.

Ubisoft were clearly big players for Sony this press conference with Far Cry 3 up next. Although already announced, Ubisoft managed to keep their 4-player coop a secret and revealed it with a playable demo. The more I see of Far Cry 3 the more psyched I am for this first-person shooter but I won’t be putting my expectations up too high because the market is flooded with games of a similar nature.

Tretton continued heaping praise on upcoming PlayStation titles that will be enhanced by Move including Bioshock Infinite, Dust 514, Epic Mickey 2 and LittleBigPlanet Karting. Tretton left the stage for a brief moment to let President and Group CEO of Sony Entertainment Andrew House who opened his speech by concluding that the PlayStation is all about “transformative experiences and innovation,” I’ll leave you to decide for yourselves whether this is entirely true. With this the PlayStation Wonderbook was announced, a unique tablet-like device to be used in conjunction with the PlayStation Eye. Andrew House emphasized that brand new experiences ranging from educational and scientific will all be available for the Wonderbook including Moonbot Studios stylish Noire themed Diggs Nightcrawler. The first game to be published for Wonderbook however will be in conjunction with J.K. Rowling and is titled the Book of Spells. A quick demo showed players learning and using spells from the book and the whole process was very similar to AR cards on the 3DS and PSP.

PlayStation Suite was up next with Sony’s goal to bring the PlayStation brand to all Android devices in the foreseeable future. HTC will be the first partner for Sony in trying to achieve this goal. It was then announced that PlayStation Suite will now be called PlayStation Mobile.

Moving back to AAA titles Sony Santa Monica Studios was up next to show off the eagerly anticipated PlayStation exclusive, God of War: Ascension. In typical God of War fashion Kratos unleashed hell upon a group of Minotaur like enemies and then an interesting new gameplay mechanic allowing Kratos to rewind time and rebuild a broken structure was shown. This ability was clearly on a timer but standing on particular spots allowed Kratos to summon this new power and then climb the rebuilt wooden tower. The demo then showed off Kratos tackling numerous huge enemies each falling to a more gruesome Kratos finisher and finally running up a giant Kraken and engaging it just before the demo finished. God of War: Ascension looked absolutely fantastic and perhaps even more gruesome than any other game on show this E3, but it’s absolutely one to look out for. The release dated was scheduled for March 12th 2013.

My favourite developer Naughty Dog were up next to close off Sony’s press event with a gameplay demo of The Last of Us. This particular title definitely looks like game of the year potential when it finally sees release. The demo once again introduced us to the two main protagonists as they traversed through a deserted city. A beautiful design reminiscent of course of Uncharted was present, especially when what looked like ravages and bandits attacked the protagonists. The close quarters combat was very striking and ammo very scarce. The Last of Us looked incredible and was definitely one of the most impressive titles on display for Sony. Considering the Uncharted series is one of, if not the most technically impressive title on any home console, expect this to be incredible.

To conclude another relatively stellar performance that didn’t really pack more of a punch than Microsoft’s conference. However, the first party support is very impressive for Sony, with games like Beyond, God of War and The Last of Us really leading the pack as games that will clearly challenge for honours next year. The Wonderbook, while a cool idea, I feel won’t be that successful but kudos for trying something inventive with PlayStation Move, that I can appreciate. Overall however, I was very happy to see great games both from first party developers and independent developers making their way onto the PlayStation 3. What will happen to the Vita, nobody really knows but one thing’s for sure, the handheld needs a price cut as soon as possible.

Igor Kharin.

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Thursday 7 June 2012

Microsoft E3 Press Conference

It’s that time of the year once again as the video game industry’s biggest giants get together in Los Angeles to show off all their new upcoming content. With the Internet full of rumours it’s difficult to judge what exactly the likes of Microsoft have under their sleeve but whatever the case, those watching are always in for an entertaining show full of cool content. Here’s a summary of the event for those of you interested in what Microsoft have coming out in the foreseeable future.

Microsoft kicked things off with a bang by revealing new footage from Halo 4. The action demo began with a beautiful cinematic detailing a UNSC cruiser Infinity going into space for the first time without war being the intention. After some sort of gravitational breach the ship begins its descent onto a planet where none other than Master Chief himself stands and watches the giant vessel plummet. A target marker is set and it’s up to Chief to find the Infinity as a very familiar HUB opens up and control is given to the player. Early on in the demo Chief spots a Covenant patrol and while he takes out a few of the enemies, an orange laser vaporises an Elite and leaves you with questions on the tip of your tongue. Soon after Chief encounters mysterious biomechanical creatures with weapons that release the orange laser we saw before, which makes it obvious that there is a new type of enemy and potentially race present. The demo ends with Chief being overrun by these things and then a small montage wraps the Halo 4 presentation up – very cool stuff.

President of Interactive Entertainment Don Mattrick was on stage next and after a bit of Xbox number crunching and tooting, he gave way to the next reveal, Splinter Cell: Blacklist. The demo was set in a Middle Eastern war camp and unveiled Sam Fisher as he took down a bunch of guerrilla soldiers in a small tent. When the in-game action begins fans of the previous games will immediately feel right at home as Sam has access to all the standard gadgets and weapons. What was perhaps most exciting was the ability to fluidly move through the environment and use the Execute mechanic that allows players to target and one-shot a group of enemies in succession like in Conviction. The demo continued to impress with Kinect voice recognition as the player lead a guard to the edge of a drop by saying “hey you,” and then flung him over the rooftop. This fantastic Kinect integration went even further as the player was allowed to load up and use a missile (similar to a Predator Missile from COD) and take down an armoured target. I was certainly very impressed by the time the demo came to a close as this smooth Splinter Cell experience looks like it could be an absolute blast. We should be expecting Splinter Cell: Blacklist during Spring 2013.

The head of EA Sports Andrew Wilson was next up on stage to announce that Madden and FIFA 13 will become ‘better with Kinect’. New gameplay integration was then shown off on FIFA with on the fly substitutions, changes in tactics and on-field instructions all done with voice commands. Madden 13 was even more impressive with actual plays and commands shouted out before the plays begin. It really looks like the Kinect is coming into its own.

Fable: The Journey had the pleasure of being the next trailer and it pretty much confirmed what we already knew, a first-person rail adventure game designed especially for the Kinect. With very little to go by its impossible to comment at this point.

Head of Microsoft Phil Spencer graced the stage next to introduce the next chapter in the Gears of War saga, GOW Judgment. A very quick trailer showed that Baird was handcuffed by his own people, so perhaps a theme of treason might be the main plot here. Nevertheless, I can’t wait to see more in the upcoming months.

Following Gears of War Judgment another Xbox exclusive hit the screen, Forza Horizon. A whole montage with loads of beautiful cars and circuits showed off what will undoubtedly be another brilliant racing simulator.

The next section of the press event concentrated on Kinect’s ease of use in the media sections like film and music. Nickelodeon, Paramount Movies and Machinima are among a number of companies to now fall under the Microsoft umbrella. New sports channels including NBA and NHL also join the UFC and MLB on the Xbox. Finally, the new Xbox Music channel was revealed.

Next up was a pretty big announcement for something that quite frankly, didn’t warrant such mass attention. Nike have partnered up with Microsoft to create a new fitness game Nike Kinect Training. It has the ability to link with Nike’s calorie counter and can be accessed on your phone, but aside from that it looked like a generic fitness game with poor graphics and standard exercise routines.

Microsoft’s SmartGlass technology was next to be revealed. This clever application will allow gamers to merge their TV, tablet and smart phone into one synchronised apparatus. For example, gamers who are playing can use a tablet to acquire extra information, or use their smart phone as a touch screen to browse the Internet. Clearly the idea or merging and syncing all content is very important to Microsoft and everything that will be using Windows 8.

Back to games as Crystal Dynamics were up on stage to demo some new content from their highly anticipated Tomb Raider remake. The new Tomb Raider created a huge stir when it was first revealed last year but now gameplay footage shows a third-person cover-based shooter similar to Uncharted. Nevertheless, it looks very impressive on all fronts from gameplay to visuals so this is absolutely one to watch out for.

Three Xbox Live exclusives were unveiled next. Ascend: New Gods had a very Infinity Blade feel to it with a bunch of orcs and monsters running around killing each other. LocoCycle showed nothing but a futuristic bike and Matter looked like a puzzle game with the same vibes as Portal but built specifically for Kinect. With little to go by again we can only speculate and only time will tell.

Microsoft kept pushing the big titles with Capcom up on stage next showing off new gameplay from Resident Evil 6, which I’m already calling game of the year for 2012. The playable demo showed Leon trying to escape a zombie infested Tokyo and the whole way through I was sitting on the edge of my seat. A bunch of quick-time events and fast-paced shooting littered the playable demo all the way to the final scene where Leon and his female partner fell into a dome full of zombies. The Resident Evil franchise rarely disappoints and I have only the largest expectations for this to be incredible.

Another Xbox Live title Wreckateer premiered and the demo consisted of launching wrecking balls at castles, very much like Angry Birds. This was easily the weakest announcement and seemingly out of place after Resident Evil.

Rather amazingly the creators of South Park Trey Parker and Matt Stone came out on stage next to reveal Obsidian’s new RPG South Park: The Stick of Truth. If previous South Park games are anything to go by then this will probably be average at best, but I’m a massive South Park fan so here’s hoping.

Dance Central 3 is set for the Xbox and an out of place live performance from Usher was next as he revealed his choreography is in the game, oh joy …

To conclude the conference Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 was shown off but this isn’t anything we haven’t seen before. As always exclusive content will be on the 360 first.

Overall I wasn’t very impressed with Microsoft’s press conference. It seems their priority is clearly to try and make their machine a media entertainment system and the emphasis on this over video games is disappointing. However, some big games were shown off, in particular interest is of course Halo 4, Gears of War Judgment and Resident Evil 6, which you should all totally be stoked for. Now that Microsoft have shown their hand it’s up to Sony and Nintendo to try and trump them.

Igor Kharin.

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Friday 1 June 2012

Max Payne 3

“Rockstar seamlessly intertwine a breathtaking story with gruesome combat to set the scene for Max Payne to tell the next terrifying chapter of his life.”

It’s almost impossible to give the Max Payne all the credit and praise that the series deserves. To put it simply, if it wasn’t for the original Max Payne games, modern third-person shooters perhaps wouldn’t be how we know them today, that’s how influential this franchise has been on the video game industry. Now Rockstar have taken up the job of bringing the third installment of the series to the masses and what a fantastic job they have done. Max Payne 3 is a shining exemplar of fantastic gameplay, brilliantly story-telling and intricate pacing. This isn’t the Max Payne you remember, our protagonist is older, wiser and a lot angrier, making this a bloodthirsty adventure you won’t soon forget.

Max Payne 3 sees our hero leave New York to flee from his demons and take on a security job in Sao Paulo. The millionaire family and their lifestyle certainly don’t mix with Max, but any opportunity to drink is taken with open arms from the man yet to kick his drinking and pill habits. Max Payne 3 is more than just a third-person shooter; it’s a tale that delves deep into the psyche of Max with James McCaffrey reprising his role perfectly. Max narrates the story from his twisted and introverted perspective, making for an engaging and amusing plot line as you watch things go from bad to worse. While Max is engaging with you the storyline is told in beautifully designed cut scenes that pay homage to the traditional way Max Payne’s story was told. Clever use of blurring and varied colours makes the screen distorted and this intertwines cleverly with Max’s drug and alcohol habits, giving these moments in the game a little more depth.

It’s absolutely apparent that Rockstar are masters of story telling and their skills are showcased exquisitely here. This revenge story dwells much deeper than simply hunt and kill. Max Payne and all the characters around him show certain levels of depth that you’d expect from a Rockstar venture and it’s clear for all to see how the Max Payne story has evolved way beyond its original roots.

When you’re done absorbing Max’s story and the beautiful world he finds himself in, you will eventually be forced to draw your weapon and protect those who fund Max’s intoxicating habits. Max Payne 3 is a third-person shooter that doesn’t stray far from the original formula allowing you to run and gun using the series’ trademark bullet time mechanic. This time round however, enemies are a lot more dangerous and Max is certainly more fragile; as a result a cover mechanic has been implemented to allow Max time to plan his assault. The bullet time mechanic also offers you extra time to carefully place your bullets for that deadly and satisfying kill. Max Payne 3 is all about the gruesome kills and the slow motion bullet camera that occurs when you kill the last enemy in any location. The last bullet is followed and you can continue pumping lead into the poor soul who dared to take you on – messy stuff.

Max Payne 3 is by no means an easy game and as a result you have the option of not only changing the difficulty settings but also aiming options. Gamers looking for the most challenge should use free aim where all the work has to be done by you. Those wanting a little bit of help can opt for soft lock, which sticks the reticle to enemies who are in your sights. Novices can use the game’s handy hard lock system that automatically targets the nearest enemy. Playing using the former two ensures you have a challenging and engaging time with Max Payne as tough and intelligent AI ensure you don’t get through unscathed, but clever use of cover and bullet time will leave you the eventual victor of every conflict.

Once you’ve become accustomed to Max Payne 3’s gameplay mechanics, you’re surely going to want some bigger weapons to play around with. There’s a whole arsenal to choose from and Max has the ability to dual-wield smaller weapons for maximum damage. Launching yourself through the air in bullet time and spraying double Uzi’s has never felt so awesome and there are plenty of opportunities to really make the most out of the action here. There are event golden gun variants of each gun in the game, with 3 pieces of each weapon scattered in secret locations across each level. When you find all 3 pieces you get the golden gun version of that particular weapon next time you pick it up with extra bonus abilities.

The campaign sets these incredible set piece battles so well and pacing is impressive throughout. From dramatic moments like shooting rockets out of the sky in bullet time to the slow paced walks through the slums of Brazil, the campaign takes you on a rollercoaster ride full of fantastic highs and dramatic lows that are sure to cater to fans of story-driven games.

When you’re done with the campaign then perhaps you might be intrigued enough to try the multiplayer. Standard game modes are present with a variety of load outs available to unlock. The perk system known as bursts also help make the action more intense by providing players with a whole variety of abilities like increased damage, bullet time-like abilities, powerful weapons and health boosts. Of particular interest are the two game modes Gang Wars and Payne Killer. The former is a five-round objective game with each round spawning a new objective. The latter has you trying to kill whoever is Max Payne or Passos and then trying to stay that character for as long as possible. The multiplayer isn’t extraordinary, but it’s certainly fun and the tight mechanics Rockstar have created here ensures you’ll have a fun time online.

Altogether then Max Payne 3 is a wonderful package that shines with the expertise you’d expect from Rockstar. A fantastic campaign with one of the best protagonists is intertwined with excellent gameplay and supplemented with a very engaging online multiplayer. I feel that it’s almost impossible for Rockstar to make a bad game and as usual, it’s an absolute must have for everyone.

9.0 | Gameplay |
Excellent gameplay that oozes with style and brutality makes this one of the best third-person shooters on the market. Max Payne’s fantastic bullet time mechanic keeps the action fierce and bloody and the camera slow down implemented for every last kill just never gets old.

10 | Presentation |
An incredible story is told through the eyes of Max Payne, a well thought out and interesting protagonist. Fantastic script writing and dialogue make sure you’re invested in all the characters and everything Max has to say. His pessimistic view of the world and the rich is intriguing and the battle with his inner demons makes for a thoroughly entertaining and dramatic tale. Max Payne is without a doubt one of the most interesting heroes in modern gaming.

8.5 | Replay Value |
You have the options of playing through the campaign again on harder difficulty settings or opting for leaderboard runs in arcade mode. Finding all the hidden clues and golden gun parts is a blast and the online offering is definitely worth checking out. There’s a lot to do throughout this challenging campaign and I’m sure you’ll want to do it more than once. Even if you don’t, the variety of content to unlock in multiplayer could have you hooked on gang wars for a lot longer than you initially expected.

9.0 | Final Thoughts |
It’s obvious that Rockstar are iconic video game developers as each project they take on comes out with a golden lining. The Max Payne series has a serious following so bringing out the third and appeasing all the fans and newcomers alike would not be an easy task. As per usual Rockstar made it look so easy as Max Payne 3 delivers a breathtaking campaign alongside excellent and technically sound gameplay mechanics. There’s something hear for fans of story, narrative and gameplay alike and together these features combine to create one of the best games we shall see in 2012.

Igor Kharin.

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Sniper Elite V2

The idea of sniping has always been wholly satisfying throughout gaming history. There really is nothing like biding your time, aiming down a sight, breathing in and taking down a mark. Sniper Elite v2 certainly has you covered in this department as this sequel to 2005’s Sniper Elite arrives in quite stylish fashion as Rebellion Development (the guys behind the recent NeverDead) have ensured fans of strategic and distance warfare will certainly get some kicks out of this WW2 sniper simulator. While it may not be perfect and occasional hitches hold up this third person shooter, it nonetheless caters to many of our gory needs.

Sniper Elite v2 takes you back once again to last remnants of WW2. Lead protagonist Karl Fairburne is sent to Germany to take down leading Nazi scientists involved with the German V-2 ballistic missile project before the Russians can recruit them and gather valuable and potentially deadly information. So most of your time with Sniper Elite v2 will be spent rummaging across a ruined Berlin, which isn’t a bad thing as generally level design is good and with different ways to traverse maps and lots of different sniper spots, it makes for quite an engaging experience.

Obviously the aim of the game is to be use stealth to your advantage. Avoiding guards, timing your kills with background noise and scurrying through destroyed buildings are all options to keep you from being discovered. If things don’t go as smoothly however, Karl has the option to pull out his side-arm weapons and tackle enemies face to face, but his fragile nature almost ensures you won’t be employing this tactic more than once. What is interesting is Karl’s ability to use explosives as traps to lure enemies and avoid direct confrontation. You have land mines, grenades and a bunch of other cool old-school gadgets to try out and they provide a huge help in keeping enemies at bay while you pick them off with your rifle.

The core of Sniper Elite v2’s gameplay comes from of course, the sniper rifle. There’s no greater satisfaction than finding a perfect hiding spot and placing a bullet between the eyes of your target. What makes this even more awesome and totally not gruesome at all, is the X-ray kill cam reminiscent of Mortal Kombat 9’s system. When you successfully take down an enemy, you are rewarded with a slow motion camera pan that follows your bullet as it goes in and out of your enemy. During this time you get to see all the vital organs and bones break into pieces as your bullet does its job, cool right? This addition to the gameplay makes every kill so satisfying and no matter how many times the x-ray kill occurs, you never get bored of it.

Sniper Elite v2’s gameplay is ruined somewhat by the stupid AI. When you are spotted your position is rushed upon instantly and the game gets pretty difficult, but sometimes the computer won’t know where you are or they might run out in an orderly line just waiting for you to put a bullet into row of soldiers. One by one soldiers might line up to try and get on a machine gun turret as you laugh and pick them off, stuff like this ruins the experience considerably and really takes you out of the immersion Sniper Elite v2 tries so hard to set you up for. Thankfully it doesn’t happen all the time and on the game’s harder difficulties things get a whole load tougher and more realistic, especially enemy snipers who can take you down quickly if you’re not careful.

It’s nice to see that the campaign has considerable length, clocking in at around 10 – 12 hours. It can also be played cooperatively online, which is a cool bonus. Sniper Elite v2 offers other multiplayer ventures too like Kill Tally, which is a horde mode and Bombing Run where the goal is to salvage mission airplane parts on a map. The most interesting game mode is Overwatch that puts one player up in a sniping position while the other is a grunt carrying out and completing objectives while the sniper protects. This provides an interesting sense of teamwork but undoubtedly being the sniper is a lot more fun than the grunt.

From a technical perspective Sniper Elite v2 is hit and miss. The graphics, audio and narration are generally good but inconsistent gaming elements hinder the experience. The controls hold out well, which is important for such a precise shooter but on harder difficulties you will have to be lightning fast to get those shots out before another sniper takes your head off.

Ultimately Sniper Elite v2 impresses more than it frustrates and the highlights of this game are certainly highly enjoyable. Pacing can be a huge problem here and the difference in difficulty levels makes it very difficult to recommend where to start. If you’re a fan of the sniping experience and don’t mind a bit of buggy AI, then you can’t go wrong with Sniper Elite v2.

8.0 | Gameplay |
The sniping gameplay is very impressive and clever use of traps and explosives keeps the game exciting and fresh. It’s obvious you’re not supposed to engage enemies face to face so trying to keep yourself concealed and in the best hiding spots provides excellent tension and a new level of gameplay. Moving up to higher difficulties provides serious challenge and can sometimes be overwhelming, so it’s recommending for the more resilient gamer.

7.0 | Presentation |
Sniper Elite v2 depicts a ravaged Berlin during the closing days of WW2 and this vibe can certainly be felt. The level design makes for some very interesting ways to traverse the battlefield and take down enemies. The story as well, while not incredibly deep, keeps the game moving forward as you continue taking down scientists and keeping them away from the Russians. The x-ray kill cam in particular is so amazing and just never gets old as you watch bones and organs explode on screen.

6.0 | Replay Value |
Sniper Elite v2 provides a decent multiplayer experience, but nothing particular overwhelming that will keep you coming back for more. The cooperative online campaign is a lot of fun and playing the game again on a higher difficulty level is certainly a challenge, but I just can’t see the need to play the game over and over again.

7.0 | Final Thoughts |

To be honest, I can’t say anything really bad about Sniper Elite v2 other than the slightly inconsistent AI but there’s nothing really here other than the x-ray kill cam that really stands out and makes you go “wow.” Sniper Elite v2 depicts war time Germany well and is technically and impressive game, but there’s something about the slow pace of the game that while is satisfying when played, can sometimes still feel a little boring in places. So if you fancy wielding a long-barreled sniper and enjoy the idea of stalking your prey before you take them down, then I’m sure there is something here for you. While gamers looking for a more fast-paced run and gun experience are probably better off looking elsewhere.

Igor Kharin.

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