Given the long wait since the city-building simulation SimCity 4 (and especially given that series creator Will Wright is sealed up in a bunker somewhere obsessively laboring on his next game, Spore), it was inevitable that somebody somewhere would jump in and try fill that niche. After all, there's no denying the fun of ruling the lives of an entire municipality's worth of little, virtual people. Whether or not City Life can fill the legendary SimCity's shoes remains an open question, of
Friday 21 April 2006
If you're reading this on the same day we publish this article then it's 48 days until the World Cup kicks off. 48 days! That's only 1,152 hours, and if you sleep for eight hours a night, only 768 waking hours!
As you might have gathered, we're quite excited about the whole thing and will be bouncing up and down with unadulterated joy until Ronaldinho inevitably single-handedly tears England apart in the semis and we're left sitting on the pavement outside the pub, our
Wednesday 19 April 2006
The world of digital distribution is making 'going down the shops' as old-hat as, well, an old hat. And that's a leather one with a feather in it. The most convincing example of online shoppery is Steam, a powerful system from the creators of the mighty Half-Life games.
Steam is to games what iTunes is to music. Valve's creation may work on a smaller scale than Apple's huge store, but it solves more problems.
While music and video stores simply upload files and take
When Microsoft launched Xbox Live Arcade in late 2004, people laughed. Who would pay five bucks to play PC freeware and old coin-op games on the Xbox? Oh, how times have changed. Now everybody's got at least one guilty pleasure lurking on their Xbox 360 hard drives, whether it be a frantic shooter or a maddening puzzle game. The games are easy enough to obtain, but why should you drop your hard-earned Microsoft Points on just anything? We're crashing through every Xbox Live Arcade game on 360
Back to Day 4
The Final Push
While gil, items and experience points can take you pretty far in Final Fantasy XI, they're not always the answer. Today we'll help you through some of your first major milestones before pushing you out of the proverbial
Set in a fractured futuristic land of oppressive government rules and bleak dystopian perspectives, Dreamfall - the sequel to the classic adventurer Longest Journey - pits you against forces that are seen and unseen.
There are three major characters in Dreamfall that you'll need to assist in their struggle to discover the dimension-spanning conspiracy that threatens us all. Zoe is an apathetic youth who's lost her direction (having broken up with her boyfriend and quit college) when her life
We die-hard baseball fans are a bit more, um ... odd than those who obsess over other sports. Over the course of a season, we chew on enough numbers to make any accountant weep and bandy about statistical terms, as if everyone should know exactly what we're talking about.
It's this kind of crazy that makes us drool over the potential of Ultimate Baseball Online 2006, a long-in-development, ultra high-concept project that only a baseball nut could love. UBO boldly attempts to give us crazies
We've been manipulating furry little critters in video games for years, so how come playing third-person platform actioner Over the Hedge didn't hit us as an exercise in boredom? The short answer: multiplayer. The slightly longer answer: a decent sense of humor.
Over the Hedge takes its characters from an upcoming Dreamworks animated feature (code for "kiddie cartoon") in which a bunch of woodland creatures mount an assault on suburbia. As you can imagine, the idea is that hilarity then
Thursday 20 April 2006
For a game most often name-checked for its menu system, Secret of Mana always had a wealth of other pleasures to offer, from its lush environments to its absorbing combat and its engaging story.
And, at first sight, Children of Mana looks set to top it, with sumptuous locations and rambunctious, punchy action. But there's a caveat: this isn't an adventure.
There's no story, no towns to explore, no elemental powers to unlock. A pure dungeon crawl, Children of Mana limits
Back to Day 2
Day 3: MMO Boot camp
If you've never played an online RPG before, be prepared to change the way you think. Sometimes it seems like the game bashes you over the head with rules - written and unwritten. So why do people bother? Because it turns out these rules actually help more than they hurt, most of the time - and the games are so addictive, anyway. In Final Fantasy XI, many of the rules are designed to force players to play with one another, and others simply aim to get them