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Posted:
2010-05-06

homer

Super Gamer Dude

8.1

EA has taken over the Wii creation of the system and the golfing experience of the Game Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10. The feedback on the game is great and the experience of golfing is terrific. The way the gameplay is created has really answered the needs of gamers. The game just allows you to get immersed in it. It is the best entertainment in golf that money can buy. Moreover, PGA Tour 10 also features a wide selection of new courses with a realistic weather effect. The star of the game is the long awaited MotionPlus swing controls. This offers a very realistic recreation of real golfing. If you are still deciding whether or not to buy the MotionPlus, here’s a tip: YES! Buy one already. It is really THAT good.

The gameplay is really one fantastic feature. The menus in the game are slick. The style is very good and the pointer controls are well done. However, the game is still not a major revolution. The fundamentals of the previous edition are still intact; EA has just added and then subtracted some features to improve the game. And there are several game type modes, but the biggest part of the single player game is on the “My Career” mode. It is specially detailed that you are able to create a golf player basically from scratch. You may also customize as much as you want in the game. And when your player is ready you can take him to several tours like the PGA tour, the FedEx Cup, and Tournament Challenge. This type of career mode, I would definitely recommend to golf fans because the tournament is filled with seasoned PGA real life players as your competitors.

The game not only has the career mode, but it also features more than ten mini-games. These games range from cart competition to target practice and then to ring scores. Well, this mode actually featured in the previous edition; which up to four players - and the fun just keeps getting better.

Then there’s the online mode. The features in the last edition are still there, but some new fantastic live tournaments have been added. In this edition, you may join a tournament on a daily or weekly basis. You can even play with the pros in the ranked tournaments. And when you add this to the real-time weather feature of the game - the weather forecast - you’ll encounter unpredictable environments which just make the game a bit more challenging.

The Graphics of the game is superb when it comes to fluidity and the course looks realistic enough. However, the textures in the game can do with some improvements. The sound on the other hand is just average. The sound on the menus is decent but is not a stand out. And the sound effects in the gameplay are not that good either.

Despite the minimal drawbacks, Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10 for Wii can still be considered one of the best. It’s filled with content and the game is made excellent with the addition of the MotionPlus, along with the great Disc Golf expansion and the online mode that add some other dimension to the game. Don’t be surprised if this game hits the top of the charts.

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Posted:
2010-09-21

rogerbunce

Super Gamer Dude

7.5

The Beatles Rock Band On the Wii is another project of Rock Band that follows suit to the new era of full band rhythm of games, but Beatles stand out from the rest of the competition as it is the only one with a real life band. The all Beatles play list has made a sense of strong continuity between the sons, while maintaining the musical diversity enough to keep things interesting and varied. Rock out as one of the Fab 4 in the Story Mode, and you’ll unlock a bevy of photographs and videos that translates the humanity of the larger than life members of The Beatles.

The Story Mode starts with a theatrical trailer that will give you a brief history and insight into the Beatles’ musical and artistic careers. As you progress in the game, the connection between you players and the band members is reinforced as you play in legendary venues. Cutscenes bring to life and bridge the chapters in the Story Mode while unlockable photos and video clips provide snippets from the Beatles’ career. Plating along the songs gives you a visual treat as well due to the artistic elements incorporated. Each song has a one of a kind video that accompanies it, and it reflects the song’s themes and its place in the career of the Beatles.

Of course, by playing this version of Rock Band, only Beatles content is entertained. There is no character creation, you cannot customize the looks of the band members and songs previously downloaded won’t work in this version. There are cooperative and competitive online modes, but as with all Rock Band games, they all shine singularly. The most significant new game play feature is the vocal harmonies.

Before you play the song, you choose which of the two vocal harmonies you are: either solo or harmonies. Harmony parts are displayed in the same area as the lead vocals. Visually, the differentiation did a great job, but it’s up to you to sing them. If you have trouble harmonizing, there is a practice mode available to sort things out. You can highlight the part you want to learn, and then you can drop the pitch out to make sure you got it.

This game is already great since the Beatles and their music legacy is great; but the real exquisiteness has been captured by the way it causes excitement I playing as a united band. The Beatles Rock Band is not just about playing their music; it transcends into a more personal level and knits your band mates closer.

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Posted:
2010-12-17

demonic

Super Gamer Dude

6.4

The Sims series is not all blood and guts action that some gamers prefer. Neither is it an out and out fantasy adventure. It is in fact at heart, despite some of its wacky ideas, fairly true to life as far as the characters go. Now we have Sims 3, its the same old thing with the same old welcome variations. That is not a criticism, the formula works and if it doesn't need fixing don't fix it.

Each Sim has an aim in life, chosen by you, and in the end that is what you aim to achieve for it. But like real life, there are smaller, short term aims, and obstacles which require attention now rather than later. This of course is allowed by the now traditional open Sims experience. Success in these lesser aims earns Lifetime Happiness Points to unlock Lifetime Rewards of various kinds. It seems there is a limitless rainbow of situations and opportunities provided by the The Sims 3. There are still interactions between the Sims, many trivial and true to everyday life, and all the more amusing for that.

Every self respecting Sim wants a career, but you don't get to see them at their work, you only have control of certain aspects relevant to your life situation, such as enhancing promotion prospects or dodging work for a day. There are too mmany jobs and rewards to mention here and it will take you a long time to explore them all.

Much of the experience involves looking after your Sims and keeping them happy, and again with so many possibilities for happiness and unhappiness thhis is quite a complicatedd task when you realize all the possible complex interactions that are pesent.

There is also much online functionality with players being able to share custom made videos and content. It is a great shame that add ons, such as new towns are not available for download. There are other tiny drawbacks, like the boredom of wathching sleeping Sims, but many of these have not been a major problem in the past, so why should they be now. Hopefully these things will be resolved in the future.

No-one claims that the Sims experience is perfect, but then, nor is life. Its my sort of game.

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Posted:
2010-12-28

Wiiuser

Super Gamer Dude

6.3

Like all great things that don’t last forever, Mickey Mouse just isn’t the same icon he once was anymore. Mickey’s fame and popularity slowly waned and has become more of a corporate symbol rather than the vivacious character capable of sustaining grand adventures.

Epic Mickey was created by Warren Spector and his Junction Point team in an exceptional manner to pay tribute to Mickey Mouse and bring him back to the spotlight as an icon in films and games. Mickey Mouse was already gradually being forgotten, but with this new game it can be said that Mickey Mouse is back in action. The game was made to showcase the traits that all people love about Mickey Mouse. Playing the game can lead players and fans alike to think that Mickey is still one of the best out there and given the right break, can still hold up to among and against any Disney characters.

The concept of the game is all about Mickey needing to destroy Phantom Blot to save wasteland. Mickey was the culprit in unleashing the hideous creature when he destroyed a magical world with powerful paint and thinner chemicals. He eventually realizes that he needs to redeem himself and save Wasteland from total demise. Thus, when he was pulled back to Wasteland, courtesy of Phantom Blot, Mickey discovers the reality behind Wasteland and the presence of Oswald, the Rabbit adds to the element of excitement as the game unfolds and really portrays the goodness and the best of Mickey Mouse that appeals to all, whether young or old.

The game is loaded with full CG sequences but lacks in-game voice acting. It was made into 2D visual to depict the Mickey we all love. With such retro technology, Mickey can easily convey and relay his emotions that make him as charming as ever.

However, the game is not perfect and has too many loopholes; such as the failure to show and give way to permanence in the game, which is kind of disturbing. The game ultimately becomes a choice and consequence type, but fails in the aspect where you’re supposed to create something in a certain place, only to find it gone when you come back for it. Your work disappears and the place is back to its normal appearance when you first came. With this problem, the choice and consequence mode of the game is not completely enhanced and may be deemed a failure as a result.

The most annoying aspects of Epic Mickey are the control setup of the game and even more so with the camera views. It’s like the camera has a mind on its own. It brings a lot of stress as I couldn’t even control the unnecessary movement of the camera in the game. This problem has resulted in several “untimely demise”, which was quite irksome as the camera issue aggravates the setup. It was very hard for me to concentrate on my character especially in fighting scenes because of the quirky and constant movement of the camera.

With all the problems that besieged the controls and the camera views and angles, the game is saved by its very impressive graphics. This, at least has made me feel like it’s a wonderful gaming experience, after all. In the same breath, the creators likewise made an effort to portray and show the history of the relationship of Oswald and Mickey in the game so as to give variety rather than concentrate on one aspect, which is to kill the Blot.

It’s kind of funny how Spector and his team can create an exceedingly impressive base to make Mickey Mouse get counted again; yet the small stuff that they’re not supposed to sweat are so flawed, they could pull down to the ground and damage the larger, more significant experience. Don’t fret, though. Epic Mickey and its positive elements do manage to ultimately make this move worth the shot. Although you could say, I was guilty of losing my patience, if you keep your expectations a bit lower and manage to keep your frustrations under control, there shouldn’t be any reason for throwing the Wii Remote – or at least keep the throwing episodes to a minimum. Watch out that the wrist strap is wrapped tight.

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Posted:
2011-01-22

demonic

Super Gamer Dude

6.0

If you have tried any snow sport, you would probably describe it as cold (obviously), expensive (think of all those layers of clothes you have to put on, not to mention put up with, Ugh!), and short (you certainly couldn’t prolong winter, and you absolutely can’t stay out in the cold for long either).

For those who don’t want to miss out on the “fun” of winter sports (if only to show that you know something about it) but hate to be out there in the cold; here’s some good news. Three cheers for Family Ski and Snowboard video game. You don’t need to go anywhere except in your living room or playroom, all warm and comfy, while skiing and snowboarding. Cool! Here’s the crucial question: Is it any better than its predecessor, Family Ski? This, I’ve already established, would have been better off with a title such as Collective Crotch Flailing – or something similar. Let’s find out.

To play Family Ski and Snowboard, you have to use the Wii Remote and Nunchuk much like you would the ski poles. You need to wag them in an up-and-down motion to gain speed just like in real skiing. However, you could also gather speed in other ways by simply twisting the controllers and then tucking in your arms. This sometimes present a problem as you may have a hard time twisting the controls you’re your arms all tucked under. Possible solution is to just use the Wii balance board. You just place the board parallel to the TV set if you want to ski; or perpendicularly if you go for snowboarding. Both require you to tilt your weight so you can steer.

It might look a bit intimidating but don’t get too anxious; the balance board is totally responsive. You would probably need to train a bit, though because it can be very sensitive to the slightest movements. The board can actually sense when you do jumping motions along with the shifts from a crouching position to a standing position. A word of caution…never do a real jump; it could damage the technomagical innards of the board. Using the board is definitely more fun than just using the Wii Remote and Nunchuk. Though for fancier moves you might want to perform some extraordinary twirls and spins using the remote and the Nunchuk. To feel the real vibe of skiing, however, using the board is a much better option.

Similar to the original game, there’s a free-roaming resort that you can get to explore. You can play in the slopes at your own pace, or you could join in races, trick competitions, mogul races and much more. You also meet a lot of characters including ski instructors and random people whom you can ask for help. All these stuff contribute to the game having a more realistic feel to it. Still, it’s easy to notice that it’s actually a bit unstructured. For players who are used to having linear progression in playing, you can’t find that in this game. You just randomly play without even getting to unlock new stuff as you successfully finish a game. For the most part, it’s just a lot of maneuvering in flat stretches of slopes to get to the event you have chosen. If you want to join some competition with your friends, lucky for you; there’s a Competition Mode and you can flaunt your skills in skiing or snowboarding there.

Family Ski and Snowboard in Wii can be fun, especially for those who play it for the first time. What it lacks is some progression from previous version. But if you definitely want to experience the tediousness of snow sports, then by all means; give it a try. You can always stop when the boredom becomes unbearable.

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Posted:
2013-04-14

epicure

Newbie

7.5

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm is the third of four expansions for the wildly popular MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role-playing game), World of Warcraft. Cataclysm introduces entirely new areas as well as updating the game overall and revamping the original areas. As an expansion it received wide renown, generally getting ratings of 9/10 and up. The expansion was revealed accidentally in February of 2010 and officially unveiled in May of the same year; it was released on December 7, 2010.

Cataclysm expanded the leveling system from 80 up to 85 and introduced two new races, one for each main faction. The Alliance gets the Worgen while the Horde receives Goblins. The new races come with new abilities, skills and story lines; Cataclysm also gives more in-depth back stories to the original eight races.

The expansion adds a ton of new content, with IGN's review stating that you can "expect to play for well over a hundred hours before you've really touched upon everything Cataclysm has to offer." Ten new dungeons and five new raids have been added along with 3,500 new available quests, and other quests have been restructured and improved. Archaeology was also added as a new secondary skill.

It also brought a huge update to the game, with major redesign of the original two continents with new areas and a somewhat different appearance, as well as allowing for flying mounts which weren't in mind during the original WoW release. The UI (user interface) was also updated as were the graphics for the game.

The plot for Cataclysm revolves around the reawakening of a dragon that hasn't been seen for two in-game decades (an aspect of the dragon appeared during the real-time strategy game Warcraft II). The dragon, formerly known as Neltharion the Earth-Warder, makes a return as Deathwing the Destroyer. The game also makes use of the current political atmospheres of the Horde and Alliance factions, which saw a number of changes with the new expansion pack due to Blizzard's habit of having expansions reveal in-game history in the making.

Reception of the expansion was extremely good. 3.3 million copies were sold within 24 hours of release, putting it second all-time in one-day sales. Anecdotally, the game in the number one spot, Diablo III, was created by the same developer (Blizzard Entertainment). Metacritic, the aggregate ratings company, gave it a 90/100, which usually means universal acclaim. IGN gave it a 9/10 and is cited as saying that, "Cataclysm is far and away the most impressive expansion to an MMO ever made." GameSpot rated it 8.5/10.

Essentially, Cataclysm is a good expansion to a well-loved MMO. The millions of sales should tell you that if nothing else. If you're a fan of MMOs and RPG-type games, or already are playing World of Warcraft, this may well be worth your time and money. It prices for $10 on the Blizzard Store website.

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Posted:
2013-05-29

wetwet

Super Gamer Dude

5.0

Marvel Super Hero Squad for the Wii, developed by Blue Tongue Entertainment, features miniature versions of everyone's favorite Marvel super heroes, and was published by THQ. The characters featured are Iron Man, Wolverine, Storm, Captain America and the rest of the super hero squad cast, from the toy line and television show. As a result the graphics for the game are, understandably, a bit cartoon like, and the music is suited to a younger audience. This is a beat 'em up game where players use the powers from their favorite Marvel super heroes to fight off all the villains that get in the way of the saving the world.

The comic storyline of the game has been simplified so that children can understand the story from a their perspective. You get to venture into places such as Asteroid M, Asgard, The Vault, Villainville and Super Hero City. The plot develops as Doctor Doom aims to collect enough fractals to create a complete Infinity Sword, in order to become one of the most powerful villains in the universe.

The game starts in a S.H.I.E.L.D missile base where MODOK and A.I.M. appear, and take an Infinity Sword fractal to Doctor Doom. This is the beginning of the serious plot that develops which involves Doctor Doom working in coordination with some of the most powerful and menacing villains. Some of the undesirables which you must face are The Juggernaut, Magneto, Mystique, Loki and The Abomination. This makes it hard for the super hero squad to thwart Doctor Doom's evil plot to take over the world. Luckily, the Super Hero Squad, team up with your favorite friends in order to take on the evil Doctor Doom and all of his colleagues as they try to make the world their own.

The game received decent reviews and will probably be seen as an average game by experienced gamers, but is the perfect game for kids, who are its target audience. The multiplayer aspect of the game is another feature that makes it good for children as it encourages teamwork.

There is also battle mode to the game where players can choose to play their favorite Marvel characters to fight in an arena. The battle mode is a simple fighting game mode where people have life bars and use their powers to battle it out until there is only one person standing.

Note that the game has a sequel which gives this game added play value. Marvel Super Hero Squad, The Infinity Gauntlet was released in 2010 and expands on the story presented in Marvel Super Hero Squad.

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Posted:
2013-12-11

monk

Super Gamer Dude

8.0

First of all, I recently watched LEGO: Marvel Super Heroes: Maximum Overload which I loved. I thought the unique use of LEGO graphics was genius and fun to watch at the same time. So, when I came across the LEGO Marvel Super Heroes video game I was doubly pleased. The graphics are amazing! The style, look and feel of the game is comparable if not better than the movie. You even feel like you're part of an extended sort of choose your own adventure version of the movie when playing. I have good memories of LEGO from my childhood and Marvel Super Heroes was another favorite, so this game has combined some of my favorite things together in one, making it even more enjoyable to play.

The game takes place in a highly populated New York City and offers you the choice of a wide range of Marvel characters, both heroes and villains. Following the Marvel comics story line, the basic idea of the game is to stop Loki and the other villains from destroying the world with a super-weapon they are trying to create. You get the choice of which characters you control, and by using their different abilities like Spiderman's web action. You also get to build new constructions in the city, smash them up, solve puzzles and travel through various environments. Some of the places you will travel through are the Green Goblin's Oscorp Tower, Grand Central Station and Doctor Doom's Castle. You can also sky dive and explore the city in between missions and do so many other things. In fact, you really must explore the city in order to uncover all the secrets present within the game.

Each mission or level is quite involved and the secrets are very well hidden. Through exploring you will be able to unlock over 100 characters you can play and discover other things like hidden bricks. Every character has a unique voice and animation, making the game even more memorable. Most of the characters have multiple abilities. It's fun to figure out what character abilities are need to move past the various challenges. Personally, my favorite Marvel characters are Captain America, Spiderman and the Incredible Hulk.

A really nice feature of the game is the ability to control multiple characters by pressing a button. In order to move forward in the game, you have to use a mixture of the super-hero powers and battle the bad guys. There's plenty of humor packed in the game as well that makes it even more entertaining. During the game there are plenty of tutorials and prompts to help you play.

Overall I really think the LEGO Marvel Super Heroes game is fun for all ages. Visually, it's bright, interesting and full of a narrative that offers plenty of fun jokes. Effects like cascading water, debris flying around and super hero powers are very entertaining to the viewer. It's also reasonably priced at about $25. It's also available on all major consoles, so anyone who loves video games can easily purchase it. Christmas is coming up so it's a perfect gift for all the game lovers in your life.

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Posted:
2014-01-15

pamh

Super Gamer Dude

6.5

Sometimes when a video game makes the transition from one type of entertainment to a home console the results are outstanding, but Toy Story Mania¬Ě for the Nintendo Wii just does not deliver on the experience made popular by the theme park attraction. Basically, one to four players compete in various shooting gallery type events, and the highest score wins.

The shooting gallery mechanic is something that is often explored by games for the Wii, and this one incorporates Buzz, Woody, and the rest of the Toy Story gang by using ring toss, eggs, and even the old suction cup gun to dial into the kid factor in all of us. However, if you have been to Disney World in Orlando and ridden the Toy Story ride in Disney's Hollywood Studios, you will be a touch disappointed with the results of this game.

While the graphics are great and the sound effects are interesting, the jerky motion of the Wii controller makes it difficult to find a knack for hitting your target. Largely, a game of tossing rings is difficult anyway, but the game seems to lack the polish of a finely tuned first person perspective. Of course, mastering a game is not a prerequisite for finding it playable, the thing is there is just not too much here for long-term enjoyment. Sure it's fun for a little bit, but every title has a shelf life. Unfortunately, after a few rounds between the family and friends, the action gets old quickly.

Toy Story Mania for the Nintendo Wii makes good on its claim to deliver a shooting gallery experience. Still, this title has a certain amount of appeal for players just looking to enjoy the famous characters and throw a few eggs at some targets. However, anyone not in that particular target market will find little more under the surface of this particular game because it is exactly what it promises to be.

Toy Story Mania also comes with some three-dimensional effects that do not necessarily translate well from the Wii console. The Wii has never been noted for having performance enabled hardware, and while the manufacturers should be given some credit for trying something new, it just does not work that well with or without those paper glasses.

The multiplayer modes add a bit of excitement and competition, but everyone tends to be jockeying for the same position in co-op mode, which makes playing the game feel a bit crowded. The friendly competition again gets old replay after replay as well, which does not help the title out enough to justify a purchase.

In the end, Toy Story Mania makes good as a shooting gallery game played once a month, but anyone thinking they will relive the family vacation through the Wii is mistaken. The game tries, but ultimately the Wii just does not have the horsepower to deliver a top notch performance for what producers were aiming for. Unfortunately, this is one toy that will find itself on the shelf more often than in the console.

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Posted:
2014-06-03

Nothing much new but lots to do.

8877two

Super Gamer Dude

6.5

When a hardcore gamer sees that a 'licensed' product, their likely reaction is to be something between revulsion and/or passive aggressive detest. These products are normally rushed, usually buggy, and with few exceptions cash-ins pushed out the door to strike while the 'iron is hot'. Thankfully, games like The Chronicles of Riddick, the recent Batman series, and even the venerable Goldeneye have proven that licensed quality can be had if games are made with the right goals in mind. Unfortunately, Beenox's fourth foray into the Spider-Man universe (among many other tie-in games), fairs about as well as one would expect amidst little change, rushed development, and a release across seven platforms that run four different generations deep.

Dating back to the well-liked Spider-Man 2, the series has been an open world staple and this iteration is no exception. Players can emulate their spidey hero and swing to their heart's content while finding missions and unearthing various collectibles along the way. This freedom delivers tangible thrills to the player but the newness doesn't have quite the same appeal, and because it hasn't really changed since the early 2000s (we're talking 2002), it can feel like an exercise in redundancy. Sure, the fidelity of the city and the animation have improved, but the sensation of flight has aged into mundanity despite its superhuman trappings.

Aside from this selling point, and it definitely is to fans, the game offers a host of collectibles and a ton of missions to pursue. In order to hit all of these side missions and goals, players are offered up a more robust combat system that attempts to borrow the look and feel of the newer Batman titles. Sadly, there's little added nuance within the increased complexity of the mechanics, and while there's a move set to expand and some experimentation to be had, players can easily dial back to a couple of simple, and early-available combos. Why press seven buttons and swivel the analog stick twice when you can mash X and accomplish the same result more efficiently?

However, a bright spot in regards to the open world traversal are the hidden collectables strewn throughout. While their placement bounces between arbitrary corners and un-ironically lazy, these items actually give players a reason to look around. Not only are devotees given expansions to their move sets, they're also afforded neat pieces of Spider-Man lore and nuggets of outright fan service. This is a certifiable bright spot amongst the familiarity of the title, and if anything, should represent a selling point to die-hard Spider-Man fans.

Aesthetically, the game is fluid and presentable but caught between generations. If you're looking for a next generation showpiece look elsewhere. Really, on any level, it doesn't do any of the systems it's on a great service (considering the stretch of development platforms should we be surprised?). Aurally, the game carries itself okay; fitting in one-liners and an acceptable score that helps to not let the buildings blend together. The best way to describe the presentation here, outside of the mediocre story replication, is serviceable. It gets the job done between moments, but it does not, in any way, add to or enrich the experience.

On the whole, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is a forgettable experience. It's charms are few, its trappings are many, and as a fourth go-round for a developer it puts forth many of the qualities that gamers have grown to dislike about licensed products. There isn't much growth here, and it would be a difficult proposition to suggest that there is a light at the end of the tunnel if this continues. Still, collectibles are the highlight here and while some may argue that's a valid point to fans; this game is made for those looking for a Spider-Man experience, not for those looking to relive it for the umpteenth time in new fidelity. As it is, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is not worth its full asking price (on any platform), and it will only serve those absolutely desperate for their spider-fix.


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