Right out of the gate “Mafia II” starts hitting you with surprises. The game opens with you in Italy during World War II fighting for the United States. While that may seem a bit removed from the overall concept of a “mafia” game, it’s woven quite well into the story, and introduces you to the game’s main character, Vito Scaletta. This opening chapter of the game is indicative of what players can expect as they work their way through the title; action, surprises, unexpected locations, and an interesting narrative. Read the rest of this entry »
Nowadays, music games come in all shapes and sizes, but there was a time when they didn’t. Some games attempted to incorporate music as an element of their gameplay mechanics instead of making it the focus of the game. While most never really reached any astounding level of commercial success, some impressed critics while others improved on the missteps of their predecessors. The latest DSiWare game from Neko Entertainment, “Maestro! Green Groove,” reminds me of those early music games that invented new ways for players to interact with notes, blending platforming and rhythm in a unique way. Read the rest of this entry »
It isn’t uncommon in the game industry to mimic other game’s successes. For example, when “Street Fighter 2″ was released in the arcade, many companies jumped into the fighting genre bandwagon in hopes to mimic that game’s success. “Blacklight: Tango Down” follows this concept by using the “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare” series as the source of their influence. The major difference being is that “B:TD” is an Xbox Live Arcade game for $15 and it is strictly focused on online play, whereas “Modern Warfare” was a retail priced game with a single player campaign attached to the package. While all of this sounds like a decent idea in terms of gaming, is it really worth the bargain price tag? Read the rest of this entry »
Some title have a very distinct art style, or feel about them where you just know that everything just fits when it comes to that game. “Mafia II” is one of those games. The 1940s and 1950s are the perfect setting for the upcoming third-person shooter from 2K, and the developers at 2K Czech have done an expert job crafting one of the most distinct periods in this country’s history. Well, recently “Mafia II”’s style manifested in real life for me when the lamp below showed up at my doorstep. Read the rest of this entry »
If you think Bethesda did an amazing job with a post-apocalypse Washington D.C., just take a look at what they can do with Las Vegas. Hit the strip, catch a show, or just blow you savings at the tables, but just make sure you can handle the local riffraff if you have to. Fortunately for fans of the series, whatever happens in Vegas won’t stay in Vegas.
Last year, I wasn’t impressed by UFC 2009. It was a game that relied too much on its license without creating a functioning game. It had lousy AI, an underdeveloped career mode, buggy multiplayer, unresponsive controls, and an unbalanced fight system. Fast forward a year to the release of UFC 2010; after a year of players’ feedback and tweaking, is UFC 2010 worth entering the ring again, or should it just retire? Read the rest of this entry »
Every game has to have a gimmick to make it stand out from the rest, and if there’s one genre where it is essential to offer something different, it’s racing games. There’s just something about that genre that makes it hard for new games to stand out, fortunately, developers keep coming up with new ideas to keep the genre fresh. Disney’s Black Rock Studio are the latest to bring something different to the table with “Split/Second,” or, as I like to call it, “the racing game that does action better than most action games.” Read the rest of this entry »
If “Test Drive Unlimited” was any kind of indicator, “Test Drive Unlimited 2″ is going to be hours of racing fun. The original was simple compared to many of the other racing games on the market, but it was so perfectly paced, and had such an interesting setting that it is still one of the most engaging racers on the 360, and based on trailer above looks like “Unlimited 2″ is going to just as good.
Twenty-one years ago the classic “Final Fight” was unleashed on arcades around the world, and it was seen as one of the best co-op experiences that you can have at an arcade. One year after that the action-platformer “Magic Sword” was released to slightly less fanfare, but managed to arouse a dedicated fan base. Aside from the fact that Capcom published both games, they have pretty much nothing else in common, except for the fact that in 2010 they have finally joined forces to be released together as “Final Fight: Double Impact.” It’s by far the oddest pairing of games ever, but the outcome should manage to keep retro game fans happy. Read the rest of this entry »