We're sure a good amount of you Xbox 360 owners don't remember the days of wallet-murdering arcade games. The claustrophobic dungeon crawler Gauntlet was the worst kind - one quarter wouldn't cut it. As you ran through overhead, labyrinthine passageways packed with monsters, you were constantly losing health. To keep it up, you had to find scarce items like food, or keep pumping Washington's skull into the arcade
Blending unmatched twitch-action with an incomparably oppressive atmosphere and multiplayer that will monopolize your broadband for months, Gears of War is the game the 360 was designed to play.
Talked up for months in a marketing campaign whose cost undoubtedly dwarfs the gross national product of most third-world nations, we can safely announce that Gears of War delivers on the promises developer Epic has made. Here's how it suckered us...
Gears of War zigs when you expect it to zag - where
There’s a moment at the end of the second act of Gears of War 2 where, all of a sudden, the infamous Unreal Engine 3 ‘Meatcube’ demo makes sense. At that point, you’ll realize why Epic thought it so important to show Marcus Fenix blasting around a giant hunk of meat at the Games Developers Conference, and just why getting those wibbly-wobbly meat physics right were so important.
We won’t tease you for longer than this sentence – Gears of War 3 is awesome. The campaign is epic, with action sequences that are more intense, weapons that are more powerful, enemies that are more formidable and heroes that are more relatable than ever before. The multiplayer is extremely generous, with a horde of new maps and new modes that are instant classics, as well as perfectly suitable for either competition or cooperation, experts or beginners. All aspects considered, this is a spectacular shooter.
Gears of War 3, however, is not just another shooter. This is the end to a trilogy, the final (for now) chapter in one of this console generation’s defining franchises. As such, it arrives with a lot of lofty expectations. Fans want much more than an awesome game. They want the absolute best game in the series, and a satisfying conclusion to the story they’ve invested in for half a decade. By those high yet not unreasonable standards, Gears of War 3 falls short – only by a little, but enough to affect our score and our discussion. First, though, the awesome…
Gears of War's trilogy might be over, but a COG's work is never done...
Most adventure-gaming devotees love nothing more than to slip on their unauthorized commemorative Grim Fandago T-shirts, sigh longingly, and bemoan the fact that the genre is as dead and buried as that game's skeleton protagonist, Manny Calavera. And unless they've been willing to indulge in short episodic offerings from bigger studios like TellTale or iPhone re-creations of classics like Monkey Island, they'd be right. But the emergence of the new sci-fi noir adventure game Gemini Rue from indie studio Wadjet Eyes, with its substantial length, small winking references to LucasArts classics (a dialog option to sell jackets, among them), and ambitious dual-pronged narrative show there's plenty of life in the old point-and-click girl yet...
We came, we saw, we conquered. Thousands of years in the future, mankind has dominion over all species in the universe, ruled by a militaristic religion founded on the Savior, whose martyrdom 3000 years before saved humanity and established the empire that now spans the known universe.
Genesis Rising is publisher DreamCatchers newest, a real time strategy game set in space. DreamCatcher is known mostly for point-and-click adventures like Syberia, so we expected a lush, beautiful setting
If you're lucky enough to get a PS3 on launch day and you've got a burning hack-and-slash itch, Genji: Days of the Blade might look like a pretty good way to scratch it. It's stylish and pretty, and its Onimusha-style samurai-on-demon action is fast and visceral. But while its dazzling visuals and animation are a decent showcase for what the PS3 can do, don't be fooled - scratch the surface, and there's very little here that qualifies as next-gen.
Set in ancient Japan during the legendary
Nov 20, 2007
At its core, Geometry Wars: Galaxies is pretty much the same as Retro Evolved on the 360, and that's a good thing. You still pilot the same old claw-shaped ship and must survive never-ending waves of hostile shapes that attack you from every angle for as long as possible. Dodging death by mere pixels, while blasting your way through swarms of enemies amidst the colorful chaos is still mesmerizing on the Wii, but does Galaxies have enough meat to warrant the price of a full game?
So it turns out Windows Vista was one big Trojan horse to get Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved on the PC. Vista crept onto the newest PCs, waited until darkest midnight then Pow!, delivered a Xbox 360 Live game straight to the back of the head. We're still throbbing.
You're a little claw-shaped ship at the center of a swarm of enemies. Movement and shooting are controlled separately, both with a full 360 degrees of freedom so that you can slip away and fire at the same time. All you need to do is