Assassin’s Creed

We’ve been seeing previews for Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed for about a year now, and the finished product lives up to nearly every expectation that’s been set .

The first thing that surprises you about this game is its setting. Contrary to what the trailers would have you believe, the actual setting for this game is in the near-future. All of the Crusade-era stuff is actually a virtual-reality representation of Desmond Miles’ genetic memory. So while Mr. Miles is a simple bartender, his ancestor was Atair Ibn La-Ahad – a member of the ancient order of assassins. He’s been captured by a secretive organization, Abstergo Industries, that’s probing his ancestral past for a hidden memory. The catch is this crucial memory can’t be accessed unless he relives the memories that preceded it. Continue reading “Assassin’s Creed”

Guitar Hero III: Ten Things They Forgot

10 things they forgot to put in Guitar Hero III

1. Pedal accessory
Everyone was excited when they picked up their Guitar Hero II games for the 360 because it had an expansion port on it. The game even came with a diagram that labeled it as the “pedal expansion port.” If it’s not in GH II or in GH III, when are we going to see this? Rock Band lets you change the guitar effects right on your axe, so where’s our pedal?

2. Cheaper DLC
If you look back to the interview I did with Bryan Lam from Red Octane, you’ll see I delved pretty deeply into the price per song of the various guitar/rhythm games on the market. Downloadable songs cost you twice as much: over $2 per song! I guess Red Octane and Neversoft are making serious money at that price point and a lot of people are buying the songs because I don’t see a change in this any time soon. Continue reading “Guitar Hero III: Ten Things They Forgot”

Fallout 3: Heaven or Hell?

Image from the Fallout 3 teaser

If you who haven’t already seen the teaser (I recommend it, if only to kill a couple of minutes), I’ll give you the condensed version:

Vacuum tubes, Inkspots music, radio panning out to an abandoned bus, panning out further to a ruined bus, panning out further to a ruined cityscape (arguably Washington D.C.), pulling back over craggy destroyed cement, Fall 2008 release date. The End.

… Oh, yeah, and a guy in Brotherhood-of-Steel-style power armor. Continue reading “Fallout 3: Heaven or Hell?”

Halo 3 Beta: Let the Carnage Continue


Having missed every opportunity to get into the Halo 3 beta for free, I – like many others – opted to purchase my beta key for $60 in the form of Crackdown. Now Crackdown isn’t a bad game, in fact it’s pretty good, but we all know I only bought it for Halo 3. Thank god it’s finally here.

The public beta was launched this past Wednesday, unfortunately a minor glitch kept the players with the Crackdown key from downloading and playing the game until late Wednesday and even then errors persisted. Continue reading “Halo 3 Beta: Let the Carnage Continue”

Guitar Hero II: The Future of Red Octane’s Crown Jewel

Like many, I have been eagerly awaiting the release of Guitar Hero II for the Xbox 360 since it was announced. Despite already owning the game for the Playstation 2, I picked up another copy because the game quite obviously has the potential to be the far superior product.

Unfortunately, almost 48 hours after launch, a large number of people have reported through various forums that their X-plorer controllers are defective, particularly the whammy bars. Some complaints even go so far as claiming to have completely non-functioning guitar controllers. Continue reading “Guitar Hero II: The Future of Red Octane’s Crown Jewel”

Crackdown: Police Brutality with a Superhuman Edge

I haven’t dabbled in the world of sandbox games since the days of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City. Although not much has changed since then, this game takes a refreshing step in a new direction.

Crackdown borrows heavily from the conventions of the GTA series in much the same way most new shooters borrow heavily from Halo (don’t mess with something that works). Although you now play the role of a law enforcement agent instead of a criminal, little has changed in the mechanics and conventions of this game. While you can’t pay and then kill prostitutes in this game, you can appropriate any vehicle you please as long as you stop it or catch up to it.

There are still radios playing in all the cars you take, providing the soundtrack for the game. For instance, in the area dominated by the Latin gang, the majority of the cars will have Latin music. Not tejano or mariachis, but some of my personal favorites like Molotov and Control Machete, two deliciously heavy Latin bands. Continue reading “Crackdown: Police Brutality with a Superhuman Edge”

Lost Planet: Extreme Condition

Lost Planet comes to us from the creator of Mega Man and Phoenix Wright, Keiji Inafune. With such a diverse pedigree it can’t help but be a fun gameplay experience. The graphics shine on the Xbox 360 as they should, with absolutely no slowdown even with uncountable enemies on the screen.

The action of the game takes place throughout the frozen world of E.D.N. III, a world in the midst of colonization in the future. No word is given on why humanity felt the need to abandon their original home, but their determination to colonize is firm, motivated in no small part by the newfound thermal energy within the bodies of the planet’s only inhabitants, the insectile Akrid. You play the role of Wayne, an amnesiac who can only remember two things: his name and the death of his father at the hands of the giant Akrid Green Eye. Continue reading “Lost Planet: Extreme Condition”

Gears of War

Gears of War is the embodiment of all the hype over the current generation of consoles and what they’re capable of.

Maybe we had just become too complacent with Sci-Fi shooter genre (Halo, Quake, Unreal, Doom . . .) to expect any really new or surprising innovations.

Finding cover has always been important in 3-D shooters, but it’s never been integrated so seamlessly into the game play. Before, you could just “run and gun” your way through a game with a healthy margin of success, but in Gears if you don’t cover, you die. Continue reading “Gears of War”