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Modern Warfare 2 may have received all the hype (and a good-sized dollop of controversy), but no less than three Call of Duty games were released on November 10. While PS3 and 360 owners got their hands on the latest game, and DS owners got a rejigged handheld version, Wii owners were ‘treated’ to a port of its two-year-old predecessor instead.
Legend tells of an online forum populated by the dead. Forumites, faces gaunt with a deathly pallor, lure you in with smileys, before plunging the knife in your back. But enough about ngamer.co.uk. Ho ho. We’re talking about The Black Page, an allegedly haunted chat room. You log in, LOL, ROFL, pretend to be a 17-year-old girl, meet a ghost. Wait. G-g-ghost?! Turns out the dead have pretty reliable internet access.
It's not usually a good sign when a game wears its "influences" too plainly on its sleeve. Usually, it means that the experience is creatively bankrupt, and hopes to rely on good will towards the game it's copying instead of coming up with good ideas of its own. It's not always the case, but it's infrequent that a game that can legitimately be called a "clone" will ever end up being any good. We really hoped that this wasn't the case with Punch Time Explosion, and we had visions of playing Smash Bros. with our favorite Cartoon Network characters and having a grand old time. Sadly, that wasn't exactly what we got...
Castle of Shikigami is one of those games that we really wish we saw more of these days. It's a vertical "bullet hell" 2D shooter, which basically means there are more pink death blobs in the in-game sky than there are paparazzi hanging out at Britney Spears' neighborhood McDonald's. It's challenging, it's colorful, the controls are blessedly simple (no motion-waggling required), its dialogue is wonderfully campy and wacky. It has no fewer
When you first fire up your copy of Castlevania: Judgment – if you’ve been perverse enough to buy it after reading all we’re about to say about this ill-advised brawler – you’ll find there’s hardly anything to do. Only two fighters will be available – Simon Belmont and Alucard. All of the other 12 must be unlocked.
This isn’t a spruced-up port of the NES original, nor is it a remake of its Game Boy namesake. Instead it’s an all-new Castlevania designed to emulate the style of the series originals and made to look a little bit like the SNES’s Castlevania IV. Which makes for an odd combination, truth be told.
Mystery Case Files: Millionheir was a surprise hit on DS, as the ‘seek and solve’ genre had previously been the preserve of PC-owning types with too much time on their hands. It’s not too hard to see the compulsive appeal of scouring complex images for hidden objects, but as with Millionheir, Cate West is one for puzzle fans only. Ideally, puzzle fans with short memories and superhuman sight.
Cave Story is firmly on the 8-bit tip, but manages to feel modern, fresh and brilliant because of it.
Things to see before you die: the crumbling sphinxes of Egypt, the ever-dwindling Barrier Reef, Fergie from the Black Eyed Peas trying her hand at the medieval Scottish sport of curling. Okay, not the last one. Only a brain infected with stupid syndrome would consider pairing such a perverse combination. It’s like looking out of your window and seeing bitchy pop-mogul Simon Cowell collecting trash.