Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Preview: The Sims 3 Showtime

Become a superstar!

The Sims 3 Showtime follows up on an expansion for the first Sims series: The Sims Superstar. We are promised a new social feature, so that you can share everything you do in the game, at once while you’re still playing.

Venture into a new world and live the dream as singers, acrobats, magicians and DJs. Using the all-new SimPort feature, send your Sim into a friend's game to perform in their world, book gigs in your friends' town, go on tour and be reviewed. You can also build custom stages for your Sims to perform on and use them for your own show later.

We are also promised new traits and lifetime wishes, so the players have more tools to tell their story. A new achievement system has also been confirmed and you can earn points that you later can post to your walls of facebook, twitter or any other social posting device. The Sims 3 Showtime is set for release in early March.

UK RELEASE: 09-March-2012 | NORDIC RELEASE: 08-March-2012 |  US RELEASE: 06-March-2012

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Review: International Volleyball 2009

Some fun in volleyball games

Before International Volleyball i had my doubts again. The third time testing a sports game for a sport that doesn’t had many games. One failed (Handball Simulator 2010), one was surprisingly good (Rugby Challenge 2011). This one? It’s in the middle of those two.
Serve's up!: You can serve in three different ways in IV2009.

Again, I thought this would be a game with a lot of controller trouble, but it really isn’t. If you enter training mode as soon as you start the game, you will learn that volleyball on the computer is really easy. It’s basically four or five buttons you use a lot. Then you have your own choice what kind of shot or serve you are going to use and it really doesn’t matter if you hit the right buttons, as long as you hit one of them. The game is surprisingly fun and good for some time, but gets boring when playing long matches. Volleyball isn’t the ultimate sport to make a PC game from.

Not again: I didn't even know Luxembourg had a volleyball team.

Got this one: I got all the time in the world, piece of cake to catch this one.

That being said it simulates volleyball the way it should be done. You sometimes feel that you play volleyball for real and even if the graphics doesn’t match on the pitch, the game got some cool animations. The replay feature where you see the point ball from the net is also brilliant. The audio isn’t really so good, but I heard the crowd shouting for their national teams several times. Credits for bringing that in the game. This game surprised me a lot and is a lot of fun, but not for too long.

Failed blocking: If you don't stand right in front of the shot, you're not going to block it!


International Volleyball 2009 (2009)

Graphics: The graphics hasn’t been in the creators mind for one second and everything looks pretty boring. Some fine animations now and then, but it isn’t enough to bring the score upstairs. 2/10
Audio: There isn’t really much sound present, but you’ll have the basic volleyball sounds you’re problaby so familiar with. The audience was unusually loud sometimes and this made this game a lot better. Nothing is worse than playing in front of an audience that just sits there and shuts up. 4/10
Gameplay: A very fun game indeed. Full of surprises these “not so famous” sport games. Well, it’s fun for one or two matches, but then things start to get to familiar to what you just watched. No licenses of real volleyball players and every player are named from “Number One” and further. Would have been funnier if they at least used real fake names. 5/10
Controls: As mentioned, the controllers looks tricky at first eye, just like Rugby Challenge. After some practice and the gaining of skills, you will manage to get some points. Maybe not win some matches, because the game is pretty hard, even on easy. You steer all the players on your team as if they were just one and this works very well! 8/10

Overall Score: International Volleyball 2009 isn’t a big game and maybe I’m giving it some sympathy votes, but the game was actually pretty fun for a while. As this one being the only volleyball game I know of (except for blubby volley), it’s get the first place on volleyball games list hall of fame! 5/10

Review: Helldorado

A wild west where no one survives

Helldorado brings the game further away from the old Desperados series, but the game shoots itself in the foot a lot of times. It can be fun at times, but to many bugs and errors destroys the good game feeling.

3rd person: There is even a third person cam added to Helldorado, but it could have worked better.

This is a classic western story, where you will play both cowboys and girls with cowboy hats. It’s a strategic tactial game, like Commandos, so sneaking is more important in this game than just flying around having a blast at everyone. You can do this also, but it wouldn’t do you good, unless you want your characters killed freely. Every character also got a special skill they can use. For example John Cooper is a typical muscle man who can lift enemies after he’s killed them and is always fast with his six shooter, Hawkeye is an Indian who can make war cry to trick the enemies and shoots with a bow and arrow, while Kate O’Hara is a woman who can seduce enemies and poison them with her perfume.

Ready,set,go!: Situations like these are always 50:50.

Help from the woods: Indians and cowboys live in peace in Helldorado.

The difficulty in this game is something else, when it is out of this world. Helldorado can be so hard and tricky at times, that you just give up and want to quit the game. The easiest difficulty seemed hard so I’d rather not think about what this is like on medium or hard. The game’s story are good at times, but a lot of details is let out, so you don’t really understand why different things are happening now and then. Graphics and audio for this game are pretty mediocre for a 2009 game and not really what i would have expected, but it have its glance moments sometimes.

Better graphics: Not all the particles are ugly.


Helldorado (2009)

Graphics: Looks very cartoon like when zooming out and a little better when seen close up or in third person. The game is anyways outdated and out of standards for a 2009 game. 4/10
Audio: I wish the game characters would have told us a little bit more, instead of just: Okay! Roger that boss! Sure can do!, when clicking where they have to go or run. The music is not so god either. 4/10
Gameplay: Are fun when you manage to pull missions off, but this happens only after a giant amounts of tries. The game is clearly too hard and would have benefitted from being a little bit easier. When it comes to the story, it is an okay western adventure story, but the lack of details around missions and why we really are doing things at all are a problem. Should have known a little bit more about what’s really going on here. 4/10
Controls: This is maybe the game's ace. Works well in best commandos style, where you can sneak up on enemies and have many opportunities to lay them to the ground. The game is usually played with mouse, with some keyboard features. 8/10

Overall Score: Helldorado can be a great game sometimes, when it’s not too hard or the missons are random. Desperados was a good game and i would thought that Helldorado would be to. Western fans will find this amusing either way, but if you’re not into the wild west from before, this could clearly be walked past. 5/10

Newsflash: Max Payne 3: Release date postponed until June

The Third game in the Max Payne series was supposed to come in 2009, but have had been postponed several times. The Rockstar owner Take-Two say in a press release today, that the game will be released June 1. in Europe, while the Americans will have it the 29. May. Take two director Strauss Zelnick also says that the extra couple of months will give the game something more and that the game will be better that way. We will sure be waiting.