Category Archives: Xbox 360

‘I Get Knocked Down, But I Get Up Again’ – Lost Odyssey Review

(First published on Gamepad Magazine, 31st January 2011)

LOST ODYSSEY (2008) – MISTWALKER

Not enough people have played this game - don't you make that mistake as well
Not enough people have played this game – don’t you make that mistake as well

The classic Japanese RPG is somewhat of a dying breed. Whereas at one time it was considered ludicrous not to have a turn based system in an RPG, over the last decade Western RPG’s such as The Elder Scrolls: Oblivion and Mass Effect have shifted the goalposts, and sadly the JRPG started to die as new approaches to battling were introduced, primarily in the Final Fantasy series. Not every developer has been persuaded to change though: Mistwalker (a division of Microsoft headed up by the creator of Final Fantasy, Hironobu Sakaguchi) has continued the old fashioned trends, initially in Blue Dragon, and now in Lost Odyssey. The point is though, does it have the quality necessary to revive the genre? Continue reading ‘I Get Knocked Down, But I Get Up Again’ – Lost Odyssey Review

The Game For John Wayne – Red Dead Redemption Review

(First published on Gamepad Magazine, 21st January 2011)

RED DEAD REDEMPTION (2010) – ROCKSTAR

Don't let this fool you - John Marston uses revolvers instead
Don’t let this fool you – John Marston uses revolvers instead

When you come to think of it, the Wild West is the perfect setting for an action game. Just think; shootouts on horseback, duels in the street, John Wayne strutting around in a big hat, you can’t go wrong. Strangely though, the gaming world has never really picked up on it. There have been a few attempts to bring the idea to life, (most notably in Neversoft’s overlooked title GUN), but it is only with the arrival of Red Dead Redemption that the action of the Frontier has been truly recognised. Dubbed as Grand Theft Horse, RDR takes the work that was put into GTA4 and applies it to the Wild West with stunning results. Continue reading The Game For John Wayne – Red Dead Redemption Review

This Is Gonna Hurt – Trials HD Review

(First published on Gamepad Magazine, 15th January 2011)

TRIALS HD – REDLYNX (2009)

This man is in for a world of pain...
This man is in for a world of pain…

I will say at the outset that Trials HD is one of the most frustrating games I have ever played. What starts out as an easy blast through some very fun levels becomes an experience that will have you screaming with rage, smashing your controller along the way. But, for whatever reason, there is always an excuse to give it another go, and therein lies the beauty of Trials HD:  good old fashioned fun! Continue reading This Is Gonna Hurt – Trials HD Review

Man vs Boulder – Resident Evil 5 Review

(First published on Gamepad Magazine, 13th January 2011)

RESIDENT EVIL 5 – CAPCOM (2009)

It took me ages to recognise that's Africa in the background!!!
It took me ages to recognise that’s Africa in the background!!!

Let’s face it, you can’t talk about the Horror genre in gaming without making mention of Resident Evil.  Whilst others, namely Silent Hill and Dead Rising, have tried to replace it, Resident Evil is the undisputed King of the Horror world. Though its premise has always been simple; to survive in a environment that has become infected and to kill zombies by the bucketload, it has maintained great appeal.  Resident Evil 5, the latest in the main strand of the series, was released in 2009.  It uses many of the same dynamics that had been employed in Resident Evil 4, which greatly changed the way the series played and received some serious acclaim for it. So, how does 5 stack up? Continue reading Man vs Boulder – Resident Evil 5 Review

Graphics Aren’t Everything – Far Cry 2 Review

(First published on Gamepad Magazine, January 4th 2011)

FAR CRY 2 (2008) – UBISOFT

Flaming bullets not included in sale
Flaming bullets not included in sale

When Far Cry 2 was announced, there was a lot of positive hype for it. The original Far Cry had been well received, and when Ubisoft confirmed that the sequel would be set in over 50km-worth of African sandbox gameplay, anticipation rose.  My word it looked beautiful!  Ubisoft promised us highly realistic environments along with some new touches, such as fire propagation over large areas of terrains. So, did it do the trick? Continue reading Graphics Aren’t Everything – Far Cry 2 Review