September 2010

At Nintendo’s 3DS-centric press conference, the company announced it is launching the handheld in Japan on February 26, 2011. It will sell for 25,000 yen (roughly $300). A North American and European launch is scheduled for approximately one month later, but no price point has been revealed for those regions yet. READ MORE

Yesterday we had an opportunity to participate in a conference call with Erick Boenisch, Producer, and Rob Jones, Gameplay Director, of 2K Sports on the upcoming NBA 2K11. The call covered the changes to this year’s game, what role His Airness, Michael Jordan, plays in the game, and even what current players think of their digital counterparts. READ MORE

Worms 2: Armageddon

September 27, 2010

Worms, for many gamers, is a love or hate series. Not much has changed over the years, despite the attempt to revitalize it with a few 3D titles. Although for fans of the series, this definitely is not a bad thing. Worms 2: Armageddon finds its way to the PlayStation Network after being out on Xbox Live Arcade for over a year, and if you’re a fan of the series, it probably has been worth the wait.

The same crazy weapons, levels, and different styles of play are all available here that you remember from the previous 2D Worms games. There is a single player campaign that takes you through 40 different levels full of very odd and sometimes demanding challenges. They start off simple, but once you get towards the later levels you find the challenge ramping to the point where it just no longer enjoyable. 

Your A.I. opponents always find ways to make just the right moves that will constantly mess you up no matter what difficulty you are on. The challenge here begins to increase as you find most of your worms starting off in very inconvenient locations which reduces a lot of the levels to trial and error. It removes a lot of the fun you may remember having with a Worms title. And aside from the campaign, there isn’t much reason to ever play this game solo.

The big plus is the multiplayer is as solid as ever, and the basic turn-based gameplay mechanics still work just as well as they always have with a group of friends. Local multiplayer is a blast and there are plenty of options in terms of game customization, rule sets, and maps. The online is fine as well, but fairly often you will find yourself running into very laggy matches that turn a simple game of Worms into something much more tedious and unplayable.

Worms 2: Armageddon is still a solid game that will keep fans of the series busy for some time. However, it is held back by some technical issues and poor single player options that may hamper the experience for some players. You probably already know if you’re a fan of this series or not; that alone is enough to determine whether this downloadable title will be worth your money.

Pros: The basic gameplay still holds up very well; plenty of multiplayer options

Cons: The single player modes are lacking; A.I. opponents are almost too accurate at times; online can be very laggy


Ace Combat: Joint Assault is the latest entry in a series that has survived a few system generations now, so the gameplay is pretty well-defined at this point. You’re dogfighting over the skies of wherever you happen to be, using the various planes and weapons at your disposal. Unlike previous entries, this one uses real-life locations like London and Tokyo. (No, it doesn’t really matter.)

The options here are basic but myriad: the game defaults to third-person view, but there are first-person and cockpit views available. There are unlockable planes, interchangeable weapons and options to turn the heads-up display on and off.

The campaign is pretty bland. The writing is awful, the voice acting is painful at times and the general plot isn’t really believable as a motivation for war. That said, it’s irrelevant. This game’s about tracking down and shooting planes, and however it wants to frame the reasons behind tracking down and shooting planes is fine.

The real selling point for this game is multiplayer. The entire campaign can be played with three others, and the standalone multiplayer modes are playable with up to eight. (If you’re worried about finding seven friends with PSPs, don’t fret: Joint Assault supports Infrastructure mode as well as Ad-Hoc.)  

Joint Assault is a solid installment in the venerable franchise, and will please fans of the previous games. Just don’t fly alone.

EA announced today that they would be delaying the reboot of their NBA game franchise, NBA Elite, indefinitely. According to Peter Moore, President of EA Sports, “Feedback from consumers is a very important part of the process .  NBA ELITE had the benefit of play-testing, a demo and a lot of our own research.  All that feedback revealed some concerns about gameplay polish, so we’ve listened to your feedback, and made a judgment that the game would benefit from more time in development.” READ MORE