Posts Tagged ‘Game Review

27
Sep
09

WET Review (X360)

3rd person action games over the years have been pretty hit or miss. A good couple of hits have been, Max  Payne, God Of War and Devil May Cry. Does WET fall in to that category?

hmm.

wet1

You play as a hired gun called Rubi Malone. You are a ruthless, brutal and very skilled woman who loves to get the job done in style. At first you are hired by a Londoner called Trevor Ackers to collect a heart from the black market in order to save Trevor’s dieing father. Someone gets to the deal before you and it’s your job to get back what is rightfully yours/Trevor’s. After a couple of levels you get it back, save Trevor’s dad then skip forward three years.

You are then approached by a guy who claims to be Trevor’s dad three years later. You’re then hired to collect Trevor and bring him to his father. Over a couple more mission you do so and the guy murders Trevor which is a bit weird. You then find out that he isn’t the guy who he said he was and all hell breaks loose. Not a bad story really, simple but effective, I found myself getting a little into it at some points, but it was kind of predictable once it got rolling.

What really swung this game for me when I played the demo was the game play. A lot of people have compared the gameplay to John Woo’s Stranglehold. I haven’t played Stranglehold so I dived into the game relatively fresh-faced. If you didn’t catch up on my demo review, here is the low down. You are armed with a sword and fire arms for combat, you also have abilities such as wall run, slide and jump. If you do these moves coupled with the firing of your weapons you will go into a slow mo mode, kind of reminiscent of Max Payne’s bullet time, where you can aim at you enemies. What I really love about this style of combat system is you could link moves together. For example you can wall run, jump then slide while you were gunning thugs down, and the beauty of this is the gunning in slow motion has a total 360 degree view so you you could shoot pretty much anywhere. The icing on the cake here is you can aim one gun at one enemy and your other gun at another, making for some pretty sweet shooting action.

On top of that you have your sword attacks, they are a nice addition but not exactly Devil May cry. You have the ability to link sword attacks after slides etc for some good chain kills, but for me the sword fighting could have been a little more in-depth.

Depending on how stylishly you kill your enemies you are given style points, which at the end of every level you can upgrade  Rubi’s abilities and weapons. What I though was a bit rubbish about this upgrade system is that some of the moves that you had the opportunity of unlocking were pretty mandatory moves, these should have been there right at your disposal, right from the start, like dodge roll for example, or mid air sword attacks. They could have done so much better with the upgrade system if they gave Rubi the fundamentals at the start then thought of more impressive/inventive moves to unlock.

The level design at the start of the game was pretty good I got pretty into it all. The Levels consist of killing enemies and basic Tomb Raider esqu platforming/scaling of enviroment. There is also some interesting sections where you were put into an open area with enemy spawn door, the idea here is to shut down all the spawn doors and kill all the enemies, again simple but effective. Then there was the rage sections of the level, each of these section started off with Rubi gunning a guy down, getting blood on her face which then triggered off her rage mode. The whole screen would turn black and red, kinda reminiscent of reservoir dogs, and you would play the level in this mode getting scored on kills alone. All these sections sound good in writing, but as your progress through the game, they kind of got predictable and tedious, which is a shame. The game tried to steer away from repetitiveness with levels here you would be riding on top of cars gunning people down, there is also a level where a plane has been blown up and you gunning thugs down while you free-falling through the air. A nice touch but it wasn’t enough to steer away from the repetitiveness of the later levels. They even tried to throw in some Quick time events, but I tell you this now, not trying to spoil the game for anyone here but the use of Quick Time Events in his game are over used and really, really should not be used in some places.

After completing the game you have the opportunity to do challenges, these challenges come in two flavours. Rubi’s boneyard challenges, which consist of speed trials where you have to run and scale the enviroment, while going into slow mo to take out targets, which in turn take seconds off your time. And there is the point challenges, where you pick any level and score the most point possible. Some pretty cool gameplay to keep the game going after you have completed the story.

Visually the game had really good potential, the game was going down the whole ‘as if the game were a film’ route, with screen scratches (which thankfully could be turned off), breaks every now and then which consisted of 70’s american style cinema adverts, and the overall feel of the game was very Quintin Tarrentino/Guy Ritchie. Grimey, dirty street crime with no good manners at all. Kind of like a drunken hobo in that sence. Which would have been great if done properly, instead it felt like a half assed attempt, more work could have gone into it. What I really did notice though was the amount of screen tearing and glitches the game had, there was even one point where the game went out of focus for me. Not good.

wet5

What I really did like about this game was its soundtrack, the songs from the game fit in really well with the whole theme, and there is one from the very beginning of the game that still gets stuck in my head. The voice acting is well done, With Eliza Dushku (Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Tru Calling and Doll House) taking the roll of Rubi, she does a great job of voice acting the part but sadly her death cries are pretty rubbish. There are some other famous voices such as Malcolm McDowell (Heros, Doomsday), who plays the voice of the main bad guy, Rupert Pelham.

WET tries to be such a good game, there is apart of me that still wants to really like it, so I might go back for a second helping sometime, but all in all the repetitiveness of the levels, the glitches in the graphics and the overuse of Quick Time Events back this game fall into the Mediocre pile. This game is More…moist, and believe me, thats not in the good way either.

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17
Mar
09

Prince Of Persia (X360)

Should of done this review a while ago now. But hey ho as they say better late than never!

First off for the past couple of years I have to say the 3rd person game type has grown on me. The only thing that make me not love the game type from the start was a crappy ps1 3rd person shooter i played. It was part of the die hard trilogy and thats exactly what i did. I died HARD! Anyway so ever since my Leon introduce me to Devil may cry i have loved the genre ever since. (but will not go near that die hard game ever again)

So when  got Prince of persia for my birthday last month i was very pleased. The graphic style looked out standing (from the videos I’ve seen on various sites) and  the platforming look really good. Jumping into the game I could not help but look at the cell shaded graphics and go ‘wow’ I’m not a big cell shaded fan as it goes but POP does it fantastically. So I got stuck into the game, the game play I thought when i played was very simple. It was just about timing and stringing button taps together to get across the level. This i didn’t have a problem with. The combat though its not the key focus of the game is pretty decent. Each enemy has a health bar which you have to deplete with a flurry of attacks. Pretty standard really. Again all about timing and quite easy to get the hang of.

There are puzzles in the game. some were good noodle scratchers for me and i enjoyed them. Things like getting things into a certain sequence, etc defiantly varies the game play and were very enjoyable.

Back to the platforming, which is the main focus of the game. As i said before its all about stringing button taps and timing your moves so you don’t die. Well I say die and this is where POP kind of fails in game play in my opinion. If you unfortunately get your timing wrong or like me sometimes panic hit the wrong button and mess up what you are doing, you will most defiantly fall. But you will get saved by Elika. Who follows you around as you play aiding you. Now i could understand if the saving you took you back to a check point or a start of a room. But the saving just takes you back to the start of the jump or wall run you were doing, to me it just feels like i am cheating the game and makes it far to easy. She even saves you during combat so you can’t die there either. Other than that big bomb shell the game flows beautifully i find it very satisfying mixing all these platforming moves together without stopping. Makes me feel, well….awesome :p

prince-of-persia

The story is simple but effective. You the prince have stumbled into the middle of a escape by a princess (Elika) toy save her just because you can then you learn that her father  is controlling a dark power and is taking over the kingdom of light. As i say simple but effective. The aim of the game is to turn all the dark sectors in the kingdom into light therefore restoring the kingdom. The story between elika and the prince is about as surprising as ice cream melting in the sun. They don’t know each other then they do know each other and oh look they love each other aww. Basically it typical Star Wars love line. “you are a woman, i am a man, are we in love now? yes!” but hey its not exactly a bad thing its just predictable.

Well all in all prince of ersia is a good game. Its a real damn shame about the constant saving my elika otherwise this could be an awesome game. It has potencial but i still feel like i am cheating the game everytime i supposidly fail.

score: 7 out of 10

10
Mar
09

Watchmen: The End Is Nigh First Impressions (X360)

When it comes to Watchmen I am a huge fan as some of you may well know. With the release of the film (which i am seeing on Wednesday night and cannot wait) They have released the first of the episodic downloadable games for the PS3 network and the Xbox Live Market place.

I have been skeptical about this game, as with my previous posts i have outlined what i feel about game t film film to game conversions. Never the less i downloaded the watchmen: The end is nigh Trail and went into it with a open mind.

The game starts off with you choosing 1 of 2 characters. You can either play as the blood thirsty horse voice vigilante Rorschach or the gadget equipped Night Owl II. I of course chose Rorschach  because he is beyond awesome in the whole Watchmen story. So i picked him.

The game then opens with a comic book style cut scene which i can see is trying to stay loyal to the graphic novel it self. But to me look very amateur. The idea of a still image with elements slightly moving just to get the idea across that people are Moving comes across a little half arsed in my opinion. But never the less as the cut scene progressed I was pretty impressed with the voice acting of Rorschach. He’s just as i imagined his voice to be in the book, but Night Owl II on the other hand sounded a bit like Fred from the scooby doo gang and i didn’t like it. You had some narration from Rorschach via his journal like in the book which then tell you that its 14 years before the events of the graphic novel, there was a specific line in the narration that brought a smile to my face. “The city is dark, as dark as Molochs heart” Which shows you that the script writers have been doing their research.

watchmeneinsceen

Then eventually the game play came in. Both the vigilantes landed in the middle of sing sing prison during a prisoner riot. My first reaction to the graphics was a good one, the game looks dark kinda reminiscent of the first man hunt game but for the next gen. And i liked the grimy feel of it, what really stuck out like a saw thumb was the HUD. you have 2 bars which look like something ripped out of clip art. One with health written next to it in horrible impact font (beware my graphics know how is boiling up :p) and the other in the same font but with rage written next to it. The contrast between these 2 bars and the gaming environment is horrible and really needs looking into. I understand the font and bright yellow colour link. But seriously? It look bad!

Then the enemies started to appear. I was Rorschach so i though great brutal killing time! Take down the first 2 guys with the X and Y buttons fine, then i start to realise there is a lot of rinse and repeat. Mashing of the Y button, then mashing of the X button, and some times if your lucky you get a Que to bash with Y then X. So we cleared the courtyard of bad guys and headed into the prison. Where we were stopped again, another group of bad guys spawn and hey ho you have to kill them all before you progress forward. So we did that, moved onto the next room and low and behold the room fills with bad guys and omg! you have to kill them all with repetitive button mashing to progress. My god this is awesome! *cries*.

As you can ell by this point, say about 10 mins into game play I am already weeping for what is such a great graphic novel.  Anyway so i painfully progress through the trial, there were a couple of bits where you had to work as a team with you accomplice but nothing special. And as i progressed i learned new moves such as throw (which was pretty cool when i thew a guy over a ledge onto the concrete ground) and stun. Rorschach also has some good finishers when you beat people up enough. He can also use weapons and have a special move which uses up your rage meter.
For the greater good of gaming I then went through the trial game as Night Owl II. Now  I come to think of this why the hell did I choose too? He is pretty much exactly the same as Rorschach but instead cant pick up weapons, and gets hit more. Awesome! :s. I didn’t make it through the end of the trial it was the painful to my soul.
So to some up this game I’m gonna say, there are some good references within Rorschach’s dialogue in the cut scenes which make you smile but as for game play? I’m gonna say this is trying to be streets of rage and man hunts Crazed love child trying to hard to be cool.

10
Mar
09

X Blades (X360)

X Blades is a game that I didn’t really hear of until it hit the shelves late February. I picked it up a couple of times (no doubt partly due to the scantily clad female warrior on the front cover) but didn’t really know anything about it. However, I saw it was on special offer for half the price, only £19.99. I had another look at it, and examining the case thought it looked as though it could actually be quite a good game, what with it’s gun-blading hack-n-slash gameplay with magic spells to mix it up a little. In truth I didn’t know what to expect, but with the low price tag and some store credit I had to spare I got it for around a tenner.

So, when I got home, after a few rounds of SFIV I booted the game up. The visuals on the intro were quite nice, and I was looking forward to starting the game. So, after watching the introduction briefly explaining Ayumi’s finding of an artifact that acts as a map to a great power, the first stage starts, at the ruins she has been lead to. My initial response was that it looked quite good – graphically the level looked quite well done, good texturing and nice use of colour. Upon moving, I noticed that Ayumi animates pretty well, with a fluid sprint that looked pretty cool. So, a little further on I fought a few enemies, the melee combat wasn’t amazing, but seemed alright. The game then introduces the upgrade system – when you kill enemies you earn souls, which act as upgrade points, allowing you to purchase skills at any time through the menu screen. I purchase the Earthquake attack as I’m instructed, and allocate it to the Y button. I then give it a shot, spending some of my ‘rage’ meter to execute the magic attack, which was a pretty cool animation, a sort of slow-mo jump and ground slam which created shockwaves, killing the enemies around me. Seems cool, so I progress to kill the rest of the baddies, and then the game introduces the first flying enemies, some giant bug like things, which I then dispatch using the shooting feature of the gunblades. A bit further on, I encounter a floating ice elemental which I can only kill using magic – so I purchase the fireball spell and kill it off, before moving on, finding myself before a boss. The boss consisted mainly of fighting off endless minions to fill up my rage meter, and using that power to fire off fireballs and eventually take down the boss. Took a while but didn’t seem too bad.

At this point, the game seemed alright. However, from here it went a bit downhill. The next level begins in an impressive beach area with a large stone structure with huge columns. Here, I get attacked by a dark orb thing, called the ‘curse’, which evidently spawns enemies. First off, came little crab things, and I find that my melee combos don’t seem to work, appearing to slice above them. So I proceed to use my guns to fire at them, and was doing this for quite a few minutes until I was attacked by some big bugs. After what felt like a good five minutes or so, maybe more, I actually end up dying – the enemies just seemed to keep coming and I couldn’t find anywhere to go. Anyway, according to the in game bestiary the ‘curse’ would recede after killing the demons it spawned. So, I proceeded to slaughter the enemies as quickly as possible, using earthquakes to kill off the ground enemies as my rage meter fills up. I keep doubting that I need to kill all of the enemies, as they just seem to keep coming, but eventually they stop, and the door opens to the next area. I was quite shocked at the sheer amount of enemies I’d had to kill to progress, but assumed it was simply a further introduction to fighting.

Next, however, I find myself in a big open area with a large four legged creature in the middle, and lizards around it. A sort of boss, I assumed, but I wasn’t too intimidated. I headed straight for it, and found it firing fireballs right at me. Managing to get up close to it, I proceed to melee attack and shoot at it, finding that the attacks seemed to do absolutely nothing, and getting fireballs in the face, and swarmed by lizards that seemed to follow me everywhere. I fought the lizards off for a bit, occasionally getting hit by fireballs, and using the earthquake spell for some crowd control, noticing the big create falls down when I do so. However, it stands back up again, instantly, so I have no opportunity to attack it in a weakened state or anything, and I’m unsure if I’m hurting it.

Now, one thing I need to explain is this – when fighting a group of enemies, the collective total of their HPs is displayed as a single health bar on the bottom right of the screen. Personally, my tv cuts the bar off a little, so I cant actually see it fully, but as I’m fighting the beast I cant tell if the health is dropping or not (since I can only see the first 3/4s of the bar. However, with the amount of times its fallen down I assumed it would be showing by now, if my current actions were doing anything. I even found myself stuck in funny places, either on top or caught under the beast, which seemed a bit glitchy. I died a few times on this boss, unsure of what exactly I was meant to do, and just generally having my health chipped away until I died. After some searching of the beastiary, I find that it is supposedly vulnerable to fire, so I start hurling fireballs towards it at every opporunity. However, firing them leaves Ayumi vulnerable on the spot for a second, so I was still getting hit a lot. After about a half hour of losing to this boss, I eventually manage to get a rhythm of dodging, slashing lizards, firing fireballs, repeat. The lizards are annoying as hell, constantly swarming a ceaseless assault, always being replaced if any die. However, I eventually kill the beast and the level is complete.

Progressing, I find yet another room of enemies. This is when I realised, this is all the game is ever going to be. Its just a constant swarm of drawn out battles, and the more you fight the more you can see the flaws – enemies dont recoil *at all* to some attacks, your swords simply slicing through the enemies as if they were made of air. There are flying enemies that require way too much constant fire, which all gets a bit repetitive, and then the odd boss, each as frustrating as the last – each with health bars that are huge, and sometimes hard to tell if you are even scratching them. Every boss has ceaseless minions that only serve to feed your rage bar, and frustrate you as they just get in the way. Here I am trying to use a special move on the boss, and it ends up being wasted on a minion, serving me no purpose whatsoever than to take me back to having no rage left so needing to kill more minions to fill it up again. All the bosses seem to follow the pattern of killing enemies (which always swarm around, annoying you and getting in the way) to fill up your rage meter so you can spam one of the special attacks to scratch the bosses’ hp. The upgrades provide some cool moves, but the uselful ones all get very old very quickly when you have to use it 20+ times on the same boss.

Often in the game, I’m not sure if I’m doing the right thing because after a while, nothing seems to have happened. A little way in, you get trapped in a room with spikes jutting up in patterns across the floor. After deciding there’s no way out, I proceed to avoid the spikes as they pop up and down in different formations, but eventually they start the patterns from the beginning again. Now I wonder if I can escape, so I start looking for an exit, until eventually the spikes come to a final formation and a cutscene kicks in (not very well acted, I might add), and I get out. This was one of the few bits of variation in the game I have seen, but its all rather drawn out and boring.

Its a shame, because this game could easily have some good platforming, in the vein of games like Jak and Daxter, or maybe even like the few bits Ninja Gaiden had to offer. However, the game offers little more than constant mediocre fights that are drawn out way too long. Its Devil May Cry without the decent combat, or Chaos Legion without Legions. Its an alright base, but its just dragged out and offers no real flair. I’m sure the fights were made long to make the game longer and more challenging, but it all just feels artificial, like it holds you back just so it takes longer to progress.

The enviroments are beautiful, hard to capture in a single screenshot

The environments are beautiful, hard to fully appreciate in a still shot

The game does look great. Visually, I think the enviroments are stunning in many places, and I cant honestly say that I don’t like the way Ayumi looks, shes obviously aimed at the male market, and they did a good job with that. It just feels like beyond the beautiful exterior, X Blades is a very shallow game. Maybe later on it might get better, but I cant see why many people would put up with the game long enough to find out. I will continue to play in the hopes I can discover something solid at the game’s core, but its looking unlikely.

The game looks great, but thats really not enough.

-Leon

04
Mar
09

Street Fighter IV (X360)

When it comes to fighting games to be honest i am not that great at them, With a bit of practice over time i get used to them but in the end i get ahead of myself and forget to block which ends in a reasonably quick death.

So now you ask “Garv, if you are not that great at beat em ups why the heck did you get street fighter IV in the first place?” And you would be right in thinking that. But ever since i saw videos of this game I have had a craving for it. It happens sometimes. and I’m glad it did.

15 years since the last installment in the street fighter series Street fighter IV visually looks like a fresh new installment to the franchise, with its 3d graphics, but it still has the 2D fighting which long times veterans of the franchise have, the game play is still pretty much the same but the fresh new look looks amazing on the next gen.

There are 25 characters to choose from 9 of which have to be unlocked giving the arcade mode of the game that extra bit of achievement that is pretty standard when it comes to fighting games. The characters are very well designed and there 3D interpretations look amazing. If you are new to the street fighter series like i am then the button combination for the special attacks take some getting used to (it took me about a day to pull off my first shoryuken) but once you have grasped the buttons then you will have a chance to win against the computer in arcade mode. There is also the opportunity during a match to unleash an ultra combo if you getting your butt kicked, this is think is a great way to sway the fight if your really having trouble. And super combos are avalible as well. Always good to have a bit of power at your disposal 🙂

SFIV looks amazing your eyes will light up when you throw your first hydoken

SFIV looks amazing your eyes will light up when you throw your first hydoken

If you have been snooping around the net, it would have probably come to your attention that you ‘need’ an arcade stick to play this game. Need i think is such a strong word, i have been using a standard xbox 360 controller and i have been doing fine. Sure my hand gets tired after a while but hey it goes with the territory.

The game play in this game is nice and challenging. You have a good number of modes to choose from. There is challenge mode where you do things like survival mode and trail mode (which is dead handy if you want to learn the moves of a particular character) Then there is arcade mode which has a number of difficulty settings ranging from easiest right through to hardest (surprisingly) but then you have modes like very easy, medium hard, very hard etc so here is a good amount there to help you progress. Ok so i ranted about him in my last blog so i won’t say too much here but the end of arcade mode boss Seth is a bugger, he is cheap and nasty and in my opinion brings down the game play in arcade by a fraction.
The online play is where this game shines, thee is nothing like challenging your mates or someone you don’t know at all on xbox live. I love it and its what brings up the game as a whole even if the arcade boss is an arse. One thing they are missing with the online play though is party play, where you have a lobby of more that 2 people in it.Lets just hope capcom realize this and put it in the next Street fighter IV patch.

So to some up for all of these who don’t like reading lots Street fighter IV is a great game. And is a must for any fighting fan. Don’t believe the rubbish you hear about needing an arcade stick to play the game, and beware of the arcade boss seth he is cheap and over powered. But the online play is great 🙂

Score: 8 out of 10

30
Jan
09

The darkness (X360)

If you have been rooting around the bargain bins recently you would have more than likely have come across this game. I’ve gotta say just because its in the bargain bin do not be put off by it if your an avid FPS fan like myself please read on if not well you can read on if you want but in a nut shell this is a run of the mill FPS game which brings little new to the genre.

Anyhoo this game is based on the graphic novel of the same name. And you play a guy called Jackie. Who was orphaned then taken up by his uncle who is the head of a mafia crime syndicate. On your 21st birthday you escape death because your uncle is now trying to get rid of you (good old classic mafia). So you cheat death but you manage to gain a dark power, the power of the darkness. Meaning you now have control of a demonic creature that lives inside you which feeds off darkness.The story itself is quite in depth and a joy to play through. I love the way it combines organised crime with classic demon from hell horror.

Visualy awesome. The arkness bring horror and organised crime into a great FPS game

Visualy awesome. The darkness bring horror and organised crime into a great FPS game

The game play is pretty straight forward as it goes. Typical first person shooter which can be played in the 2 classic ways. My approach of all guns blazing or the approach i never get on with which is the pick people off approach i would like to say here the aiming does like to trail off a little and aim for peoples heads all the time, which is well and good but can be a little annoying for FPS veterans. So it brings nothing special to the FPS genre. The darkness powers you acquire throughout the game are a nice touch. There are 4 powers in total. Creeping dark, which lets you take control of one of your darkness serpents and creep around stealthy while you sit in a corner. Demon arm which lets you impale people, lift up cars and objects or take out street lights so you can feed off the darkness. The darkness guns which i won’t say much about as they are a part of the story and the black hole ability which you summon a black hole and see your enemies fall int it. Most fun!

Graphically this game is a pleasure to look at. A lot of time has been spent on the visuals here with locals looking rich and vibrant. Even if the game is all set at night and in the dark the low lighting effects just add to the suspense an the atmosphere of the game. One gripe i do have if i had to have one is the lip syncing when he characters talk. Jackie’s mouth hardly moves, but for me that is not a big deal.

The voice acting in this game is the best i have heard in a long while. The voice of Jackie is amazing and it defiantly feels like I’m in a movie. I love it. Oh and a quick nod to Mike Patton (Faith no more) who is the voice of the darkness. awesome!

So if your an FPS fan like me and want another game to add t your collection defiantly pick this up. The story is in depth (why shouldn’t it be if its based on a graphic novel) and it is a pleasure to look at. Defiantly one for FPS fans mind.

26
Jan
09

Ninja Gaiden 2 (X360) (Contains Gory Image)

In recent years i have grown a love for the 3rd person hack and slash action game (as you may well know already) As i was brought int the 3rd person action world with DMC 3 i was a bit sceptical as to why ninja gaiden 2 was going to hold. The 1st ninja gaiden game was good but was nothing compared to the dmc i still play and love.

When i first saw the graphic detail in the cut scenes of ninja gaiden i couldn’t help but smile. The art directors etc have done well. With the sky city Tokyo looking amazing from the start an all the locales within the game looking mostly very sharp (bar one which is just a big green tunnel which you could tell the designers were getting stuck for ideas around then) Ninja gaiden has made a great port to the next gen with great graphics which make you want to play to the next mission just to see what its like (The mission when it rains blood…..awesome) Speaking of which the sheer amount of gore in his game is nuts. With hack and slash games like DMC where the enemies get slashed up n just fizzle out. In NG2 the limbs go flying and yo can dismember enemies and they will still come back for more. I think this is a nice touch even though it is a bit Monty python (it’s a mere flesh wound…come here and ill bite your legs off) It is used well. If you lop a guys arm off, he will become a bit stronger, leave him for too long and he will kamikaze. But hit the Y button and you pull of an amazing finisher on him. Little bit like mortal combat fatality in that there is a lot of blood and very flashy.

Bloody as it is NG2 is a joy to look at

Bloody as it is NG2 is a joy to look at

The game play has a nicer learning curve than it did in NG1. With a basic tutorial guiding you through the first level. At his point mashing the Y and X buttons will get rid of your opponents nicely. But as the game progresses tactics are key an you can’t just rely on simple button mashing to get you through which appals to me a lot. Meaning you can’t just blag your way through this game. OK eventually  the enemies will feel incredibly cheap shooting at you from 6 miles away but your a ninja and dodging is one of the things ninjas are good at :p.

There is a brilliant amount of weapons you get as you progress. different weapons suit different people for me when i get the scythe (yes the one on the box art) there is noting more satisfying than going all guns blazing into a group of spider clan ninjas. The level up system for each weapon is great too. Meaning you get a lot of game play for your moneys worth!  The attacking doesn’t stop at melee weapons, you also have nimpo (awesome ninja magic spells) and projectile weapons, which you also find as you progress through the story and can also level up as you go.

The story is your typical evil thing wants to take over the world so you must stop it by killing demons and it. But with a game with so much in depth game play (for a hack and slash) the story is not your main concern. I found when i was playing it i wasn’t bothered by the story really, it was the game play that had me hooked which is quite rare in this gaming age.

Boss fights are challenging which is what i like to see. Getting you frustrated enough to actually not put the controller down until you kill the bugger. There are some hidden skulls t find which will keep you exploring each vibrant level and there are also tests of valour. Meaning if you kill everything and survive we will give you a shiny gift, which is always nice. And there is a healthy amount of DLC out for it. But if you do get the costumes be warned. I have found myself not being able to play the game when i take my harddrive to a friends house and plug it in their 360. Because of the licencing on the 360 for the DLC it wont let you play the game at all which i find extremely annoying.

As hack and slash games go this ranks very highly. Good way to vent anger nice easy-ish learning curve (not like NG1 when you die in the tutorial :p) and a solid amount of game play. Also is pleasing to the eye. Just a real shame about he DLC rubbish

Score: 8 out of 10