Top 100 Single Player PS3 Games: Part 6 (50-41)

DeusEx HR 8

Wow, I can’t believe we’re already at the Top 50!

If you’ve missed the previous installments, catch up here!

Part One (100-91)

Part Two (90-81)

Part Three (80-71)

Part Four (70-61)

Part Five (60-51)

Please bear in mind this list doesn’t take into account multiplayer aspects of games, it’s based solely on single player experience.

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50. Call Of Duty: Black Ops II

BlackOpsIIMain

I’ve really enjoyed the last few campaigns in the Call Of Duty series so when I heard that Black Ops II had the best one yet I was pretty excited to give it a shot. Unfortunately my initial time with the game did not go well. During the opening hour I got trapped in a game breaking glitch and after getting through that my PS3 froze up. I also had some pretty weird instances of character models getting stuck where they shouldn’t be and the game just felt really unpolished.

However beyond those issues, the campaign *is* the best in a Call Of Duty game to date. I know a lot of people just buy the game for the multiplayer but really you should check this story mode out. It flits between the 80’s and 2025 but is far less confusing than previous games. I always had a sense of which character I was controlling, something that hasn’t always been the case in former iterations of the titles.

The story is formed (and endings chosen) as you go through the game and the coolest thing Black Ops II pulls off is that half the time you’re not even aware you’re making a choice or triggering something that will change the story. Very refreshing.

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49. Kane And Lynch

You take control of Adam ‘Kane’ Marcus, a criminal on his way to death row for crimes committed in Venezeula. Kane is busted out of his prison van by a mysterious group called The7 who he worked with previously. They think Kane stole the money from their last job and stashed it somewhere.

If he doesn’t get them the money back in three weeks his wife and daughter will be killed. Kane claims he doesn’t know where it is but he does know who took the cash and will hunt them down. And so begins a thoroughly enjoyable ride into the desperate life of Kane…

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48. Vanquish

From the makers of Bayonetta, Vanquish tells the story of Sam Gideon, a member of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), who is tasked with rescuing a scientist that was working on the O’Neill Cylinder Space Station when it was hijacked by Russia. Russia are holding the USA to ransom, destroying San Francisco and targeting New York next unless the Americans comply with their wishes – total surrender.

Got all that? Right now forget all about it and SHOOT THOSE ROBOTS!

Vanquish is certainly an experience I’d recommend and for a few sessions of a couple of hours each it is a blast to play. It doesn’t quite have the same depth as Bayonetta with regard to the characters but it can hold it’s head high in terms of a single player experience.

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47. Red Faction: Guerrilla

Red Faction: Guerrilla is a bit of an underrated gem. It’s your basic David vs Goliath battle with the Red Faction resistance (you guys) taking on the evil Earth Defence Force who have taken advantage of their position in power on Mars.

But the main part of the game is the destruction. Buildings fall realistically and weakening them structurally can often mean a delayed collapse.

I heartily recommend Red Faction. It’s not massively difficult but it has a good solid story and is insanely fun. You can pick this up for about £15 pre-owned in most places and it will be money well spent.

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46. Deus Ex: Human Revolution

You play as Adam Jensen, who works security at Sarif Industries – a biotechnology firm specialising in human cybernetic enhancement. Adam is severely injured and patched up using new cybernetic augmentations. Adam returns to action 6 months later with Megan and several other colleagues having died in the attack that injured him.

Running and gunning is an option in Deus Ex, it’s just a more risky strategy than taking the non confrontational approach. But that in a nutshell is the beauty of the game. There is almost always a whole host of ways to approach situations – depending on what augmentations you choose.

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45. Mafia II

Mafia II tells the story of Vito Scaletta, a returning war veteran who comes home to find life has changed while he’s been away and soon fins himself mixed up in the world of the Mafia.

This game is an interesting beast, as during a lot of the promo leading up to its release we were led to believe it would be open world (ala GTA) at least in some parts. In reality this is a very linear experience and that has led to some negative feedback.

Personally while that discovery came as a disappointment if you can look beyond it then you will find a strong, solid single player experience with a well crafted and immersive story.

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44. X-COM: Enemy Unknown

XCOM

I hadn’t really played many RTS (Real Time Strategy) games before embarking on XCOM: Enemy Unknown. I wasn’t sure if this was one that I would enjoy and really get into – in the end I surprised myself by how involved I got.

You take control of the XCOM Initiative, a coming together of lots of countries to fight together to stop alien invaders. You’ll be destroying enemies, capturing them and using their tech to create fantastical new weapons for your soldiers.

You don’t play this game as you would a third or first person shooter – you only have a set amount of moves per turn and will have to be very careful in planning them. XCOM is a brilliant, and challenging, game.

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43. Fallout: New Vegas

Fallout: New Vegas sees you play as The Courier, a… ahem… courier who has his package stolen, is shot in the head and left for dead in a shallow grave. Saved by a passing robot you end up, not only conscious, but looking for revenge.

In New Vegas there are various groups that you can align with and you can play factions off against each other up to a point but as you get towards the end of the game, you’ll need to decide where your loyalties lie.

Overall Fallout: New Vegas is a very good game. While it doesn’t do a great deal of new stuff it delivers a worthwhile experience that will tide fans of the series over until Fallout 4 arrives.

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42. Resistance 3

Resistance 3

In Resistance 3 you play as Joseph Capelli but a lot has changed since the 2nd game in the series. The humans lost the war. Resistance 3 is about survival. Beaten down and living mainly underground, Capelli and his fellow survivors get on with life as best as possible. These are not just soldiers, there are children and non-fighters as well, just trying to get through each day.

You’re outnumbered and underpowered for the most part but the game’s great controls and wonderful weapon selection make it joy to blast through the levels. There are small victories here and there but as a battle heats up you’ll likely find yourself running away to survive.

Unfortunately the campaign loses it’s way in the last few hours and the final battle/ending was a touch disappointing to me. But make no mistake – despite tailing off towards the end, it had one of the best campaigns I played that year.

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41. Tomb Raider

TombRaider2

Crystal Dynamics delivered on their promise of a reboot for Lara Croft. Gone is the Lara of old with the wonky body shape and in her place is a more realistic Lara, both in terms of appearance and character. As a wannabe archaeologist Lara is not a trained hunter/killer and is still wet behind the ears after coming out of college/university.

The opening few hours are definitely the strongest here – Tomb Raider is at it’s best during tense moments with just one or two enemies. With Lara coming to grips with the fact she’s going to need to do whatever it takes to survive. It’s been talked about a lot but her first kill is handled perfectly.

Tomb Raider is a fantastic game. There are a few annoying difficulty spikes here and there but that’s par for the course in most games. Lots of action packed set pieces and climbing/falling moments raise the bar but it’s the quieter moments in Lara’s journey that really struck a chord with me.

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Another ten games down and more coming soon – stay tuned!

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Red Faction Armageddon – Review (PS3)

Red Faction: Guerrilla was a bit of a sleeper hit with it’s mix of open world missions and insanely fun destructability.

When a follow up was announced I was looking forward to causing more carnage and seeing even bigger buildings crumble via my fair hand.

Unfortunately for some reason Volition decided instead to abandon the previous game’s direction and head down a more enclosed route.

Perhaps the game would benefit? Guerrilla certainly wasn’t perfect – the mission unlock structure was wonky at times and the game was probably 2 or 3 hours too long. Maybe moving the whole thing under the surface of Mars would improve the experience?

The simple and disappointing answer is ‘no.’

Armageddon is nothing like Guerrilla. Apart from the similar look of the main character (they are related after all) and sharing some of the weapons from the first game THQ could’ve called this game anything… a new IP possibly?

The story here is set 50 years after Guerrilla and you play as Darius Mason – a distant relative of Alec Mason from the previous game.

The people of Mars were forced underground a few years ago when Darius was tricked into destroying the terraformer that kept the weather on Mars stable. Unfortunately an alien race (well technically the humans are the aliens but you get what I mean) has been disturbed and is looking to get rid of the humans.

And so you plough through enemy after enemy, for the most part in underground corridors. With the odd walker section thrown in for good measure.

While I applaud some of the weapon design – the magnet gun in particular was a good addition – the way the game has been made doesn’t really encourage experimenting with weapons because as you’re swarmed by 6 or 8 enemies all you need is your assault rifle to see them off.

The enemy design is tragically generic. Both in terms of look and design – normal enemy, crawly enemy, enemy with ranged attack, big enemy etc.

As for the online side of things I couldn’t find anyone else playing the game when I tried so had no experience with it.

For me normally the biggest crime a game can commit is to be boring – I can tolerate a poorly designed game if I have to as long as it’s enjoyable. Red Faction Armageddon was a boring game to play through but that isn’t the issue that troubles me the most.

For some unknown reason the makers decided to rip out almost everything that made Guerrilla a unique game and put out a title that, unfortunately, disappoints when compared to the previous game. I just can’t understand it.

Red Faction Armageddon might be worth a play through if you’re really interested in the fiction but for most people I’d say there are better games in the genre to play.

If you want to play a third person shooter, with close corridor shooting against creepy alien type monsters I’d recommend picking up either of the Dead Space games instead.

Rating: 4/10

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Top 50 Single Player Games: Part Two (40-31)

So here we go with Part Two of my Top 50 Single Player Games, appreciate the comments on the first part (which can be found here) so keep ’em coming. As I said before I’m mainly focusing on good story based experiences, so things like Gran Turismo 5 won’t be appearing on the list.

Let’s get started:

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40. BIOSHOCK 2 (NE)

Bioshock 2 brings you back 8 years after the events of the first game (1968) to take control of a Big Daddy who has no memory of the last decade and wants to find the Little Sister he was originally paired with.

A sequel to such a unique title was always going to be tricky to pull off. However 2k Marin have done well to recreate the atmosphere of the original game while keeping it different enough that you can tell time has passed.

At the end of the day this is definitely a title that revels in the world created for it by the previous game. You don’t have to have played the original to enjoy this game but you’ll probably get more of it if you have.

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39. BULLETSTORM (NE)

Telling the story of Grayson Hunt, a space pirate in the 26th century, who crash lands his crew’s ship on an alien planet following a (failed) drunk attempt at revenge on a huge spaceship. As you try to battle your way off the planet all hell breaks loose, with various factions taking each other on as well as fighting with you.

The game mechanics work well and some of the ways you can dispatch foes have to be seen to be believed.

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38. BORDERLANDS (24)

Borderlands has a distinctive cartoon, tongue in cheek style that is perfectly suited for the game and while the story isn’t particularly amazing, the colourful characters will have you chuckling along.

Borderlands is all about the loot. The game creates random weapons as you go along so it’s unlikely two people will ever get the same set of weapons throughout a playthrough, which is pretty cool.

It’s one of the longer games I’ve played recently – clocking in more towards 20 hours for a first playthrough – but it’s definitely a universe that should be experienced.

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37. MORTAL KOMBAT (NE)

After a fair few lacklustre versions, culminating in the widely derided Mortal Kombat Vs DC, Nether Realms Studios decided to go back to basics for this, the ninth Mortal Kombat game.

For the first time in a long time the storyline of a fighting game ties together nicely. Rather than choosing a fighter and playing through their story, in Mortal Kombat you play as various characters (usually for 3 or 4 fights each) as the story progresses.

This is a great idea. Firstly because it means the overall story is the focus as opposed to one character, and secondly becuase it forces you to use characters you may never have chosen and therefore before a better all round player. Recommended, even for people with only a passing interest in fighting games.

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36. VANQUISH (NE)

From the makers of Bayonetta, Vanquish tells the story of Sam Gideon, a member of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), who is tasked with rescuing a scientist that was working on the O’Neill Cylinder Space Station when it was hijacked by Russia. Russia are holding the USA to ransom, destroying San Francisco and targeting New York next unless the Americans comply with their wishes – total surrender.

Got all that? Right now forget all about it and SHOOT THOSE ROBOTS! 😆

Vanquish is certainly an experience I’d recommend and for a few sessions of a couple of hours each it is a blast to play. It doesn’t quite have the same depth as Bayonetta with regard to the characters but it can hold it’s head high in terms of a single player experience.

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35. RED FACTION: GUERRILLA (23)

Red Faction: Guerrilla is a bit of an underrated gem. It’s your basic David vs Goliath battle with the Red Faction resistance (you guys) taking on the evil Earth Defence Force who have taken advantage of their position in power on Mars.

But the main part of the game is the destruction. Buildings fall realistically and weakening them structurally can often mean a delayed collapse.

I heartily recommend Red Faction. It’s not massively difficult but it has a good solid story and is insanely fun. You can pick this up for about £15 pre-owned in most places and it will be money well spent.

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34. RESISTANCE 2 (22)

After saving England in the previous installment Hale is back in business to rescue the U S of A – since his incapacitation the Chimera have launched a full attack on America and Hale, as part of the Sentinal squad (made up of soldiers injected with the Chimera virus but kept under control), have to step in and stop them in their tracks.

A hard hitting but fun first person shooter.

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33. MAFIA II (NE)

Mafia II tells the story of Vito Scaletta, a returning war veteran who comes home to find life has changed while he’s been away and soon fins himself mixed up in the world of the Mafia.

This game is an interesting beast, as during a lot of the promo leading up to its release we were led to believe it would be open world (ala GTA) at least in some parts. In reality this is a very linear experience and that has led to some negative feedback.

Personally while that discovery came as a disappointment if you can look beyond it then you will find a strong, solid single player experience with a well crafted and immersive story.

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32. JUST CAUSE 2 (NE)

Just Cause 2 is like the evolution of Mercenaries 2 – it excels in many ways and also has the added bonus of the carnage you can create with Rico’s grappling hook, which can hook enemies as well as grappling to walls etc.

With a story featuring rebels and dictators, Just Cause 2 doesn’t tread any new ground in terms of narrative but you probably won’t care as a mountain of explosions gather behind you. As well as the main story missions you’ll need to complete lots of side missions to create as much Chaos as possible.

As an example of how crazy this game is one of the side missions involved me stealing a fighter jet 😎 and then using it to shoot down a recently launched SPACE SHUTTLE 😯

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31. MIRROR’S EDGE (21)

Mirror’s Edge wowed everyone with it’s crisp, clean graphics and it’s unique first person perspective. The view takes a while to get used to and it had a few really annoying parts where it was difficult to time jumps etc because of the view but Mirror’s Edge is certainly worth playing through as it offers a style of gameplay that is totally unique in the current games market.

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So there we go, another part down and we’re hitting the Top 30 next!

As always thanks for reading and feel free to leave a comment on the games so far and whether you’d have placed any of them higher/lower.

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Top 30 Single Player Games – Part One (30-16)

A huge amount of awesome single player games over the last 18 months or so has meant that my Top Single Player Games list has become a bi-annual feature for the site.

Despite the boom in multiplayer online play sometimes you just wanna kick back and enjoy a decent story on your own.

So here is another updated list – extended from 20 to 30, with added games and also a reassessment of some of the titles already in there.

Previous chart positions are included in brackets and you can click on the titles of the games to read my full reviews (where possible).

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30. BATTLEFIELD: BAD COMPANY (14)

Bad Company

Chock full of explosions and with some really impressive destruction of buildings etc, Battlefield: Bad Company is like a huge big budget Hollywood blockbuster.

It’s a great, mindless blast of a game. Add some memorable characters into the mix and you’ve got yourself a very enjoyable, and playable, package.

 

29. ASSASSIN’S CREED (12)

AssassinsCreed

In Assassin’s Creed you play through Desmond Mile’s repressed ancestrial memories as Altair in the Medieval Holy Land (with brief interludes as Desmond struggling to find out what is going on in the present day).

You will need to research targets and carry out assassinations using a variety of options – sword, hidden blade, knife etc.

This game is great fun and definitely one to check out.

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28. ARMY OF TWO

Salem and Rios are guns for hire – private contractors that go in and sort out the crap that the army or whoever can’t deal (or can’t be seen dealing) with.

There is convoluted conspiracy theory plotline but to be perfectly honest the story isn’t really the main attraction here – it’s all about the carnage.

Army of Two is like playing an ultra violent cartoon and overall I would say this game is a fun 5 or 6 hour blast. While it does become repetitive at times it makes no excuses – in fact Army Of Two is likely to hand you a  rocket launcher, spawn 20 new enemies and tell you to ‘get the f**k on with it.’

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27. THE SABOTEUR

The game takes place in and around Paris in the 1940’s with the Nazis occupying the majority of the city and it’s surrounding areas. You control Sean Devlin, an Irishman, who gets involved with the French resistance following a traumatic experience at the hands of the Gestapo.

The Saboteur is a game that I feel should be played but if you are looking for a high quality experience, this isn’t it. The odd bug here and there and a general unfinished feeling hamper the gameplay but if you’re willing  to give it a shot The Saboteur is worth a playthrough.

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26. LITTLEBIGPLANET

While often thought of as a multiplayer experience, LittleBigPlanet is just as much fun when played solo.

Sackboy has become a wonderful mascot for the Playstation 3 brand and this game really shows why. Customising your character and playing through the various crazy levels (loved Uncle Jalapeno!) is great fun.

*Shameless Plug* My created level is called ‘Kitchen Kaper’ by GregHorrorShow. Had a lot of complaints it’s too hard, let me know what you think.

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25. PROTOTYPE (20)

Prototype

In Prototype you take on the role of Alex Mercer as he awakens during his autopsy ,wondering what the hell is going on. He quickly escapes, realising he now has various superpowers.

Mercer needs to find out what the hell has happened to him and why New York is infected with a virus that has turned half the population into zombies.

Prototype is definitely a game worth playing despite it’s various faults – it was a blast to play through if a little frustrating at times.

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24. BORDERLANDS

Borderlands has a distinctive cartoon, tongue in cheek style that is perfectly suited for the game and while the story isn’t particularly amazing, the colourful characters will have you chuckling along.

Borderlands is all about the loot. The game creates random weapons as you go along so it’s unlikely two people will ever get the same set of weapons throughout a playthrough, which is pretty cool.

It’s one of the longer games I’ve played recently – clocking in more towards 20 hours for a first playthrough – but it’s definitely a universe that should be experienced.

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23. RED FACTION: GUERRILLA

Red Faction: Guerrilla is a bit of an underrated gem. It’s your basic David vs Goliath battle with the Red Faction resistance (you guys) taking on the evil Earth Defence Force who have taken advantage of their position in power on Mars.

But the main part of the game is the destruction. Buildings fall realistically and weakening them structurally can often mean a delayed collapse.

I heartily recommend Red Faction. It’s not massively difficult but it has a good solid story and is insanely fun. You can pick this up for about £15 pre-owned in most places and it will be money well spent.

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22. RESISTANCE 2 (19)

Resistance 2

After saving England in the previous installment Hale is back in business to rescue the U S of A – since his incapacitation the Chimera have launched a full attack on America and Hale, as part of the Sentinal squad (made up of soldiers injected with the Chimera virus but kept under control), have to step in and stop them in their tracks.

A hard hitting but fun first person shooter.

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21. MIRROR’S EDGE (18)

Mirrors Edge

Mirror’s Edge wowed everyone with it’s crisp, clean graphics and it’s unique first person perspective. The view takes a while to get used to and it had a few really annoying parts where it was difficult to time jumps etc because of the view but Mirror’s Edge is certainly worth playing through as it offers a style of gameplay that is totally unique in the current games market.

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20. RAINBOW SIX VEGAS (17)

Rainbow Six Vegas

If you like your first person shooters with a bit of brain behind the brawn then Rainbow Six Vegas may be the game for you.

With a good old fashioned SAS vs Terrorists style plot and lots of fun set pieces Rainbow Six Vegas is definitely worth a shot.

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19. RESIDENT EVIL 5 (16)

Resi Evil 5

For all it’s faults Resident Evil 5, taken as a whole, is a brilliant game and one that I would recommend. Graphically it’s stunning and while it isn’t a hugely difficult game you’ll enjoy playing through and unravelling the story.

It survives the huge expectation of following Resident Evil 4… just. This is a game that everyone should play as Resi comes to the new generation of consoles.

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18. DRAGON AGE: ORIGINS

Dragon Age: Origins sees you create a fantasy character to take on an epic journey – starting with your very own prologue.

After playing the backstory your character is enlisted to become a Grey Warden – an elite group of fighters whose main role is to destroy the Darkspawn – evil creatures that have begun to overrun the world.

I really enjoyed the storyline of Dragon Age: Origins and it was nice to see characters develop over such a large amount of time – of course I understand that this may be the norm for you regular RPG players but for me it was a nice change of pace.

This is a mammoth game (over 25 hours) but it is certainly worth your time if you’re willing to lose yourself in it.

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17. KANE AND LYNCH: DEAD MEN (15)

Kane And Lynch

You take control of Adam ‘Kane’ Marcus, a criminal on his way to death row for crimes committed in Venezeula. Kane is busted out of his prison van by a mysterious group called The7 who he worked with previously. They think Kane stole the money from their last job and stashed it somewhere.

If he doesn’t get them the money back in three weeks his wife and daughter will be killed. Kane claims he doesn’t know where it is but he does know who took the cash and will hunt them down. And so begins a thoroughly enjoyable ride into the desperate life of Kane…

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16. BATTLEFIELD: BAD COMPANY 2

The single player campaign is a wonderful blast through several impressive set pieces and the feeling of being in ‘B’ Company really adds to the experience.

That sense of community and closeness to the characters is a big bonus and probably the main reason Battlefield’s campaign stands head and shoulders above Modern Warfare 2.

Clocking in at around 8/9 hours it’s also almost double the length of Infinity Ward’s offering but it occasionally lacks the polish of Call Of Duty – perhaps down to the fact that everything is destructable in the environment. Overall though this is a great single player experience.

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So there you have it the first part of the run down, the remaining 15 games will be hitting the site next week!

Let me know if you think any of these should’ve been higher up in the chart 🙂

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GregHorrorShow’s Top 10 Multiplayer Maps

 

With the increase of online gaming, and the fact that almost everything released now comes with an online component, the design of multiplayer maps has never been more important.

So I’ve got together a list of the best 10 multiplayer maps out there – the fact that 8 of the 10 maps come from just 4 titles goes to show the excellent work that those designers are doing.

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10. VISTA (Red Faction: Guerrilla)

(Apologies for the poor quality of the video this is literally the ONLY video anywhere I could find)

We start our round up, funnily enough, with a map that is actually played offline in local multiplayer.

‘Wrecking Crew’ mode in Red Faction: Guerrilla tasks each player with causing the most damage to the buildings in the area within 1 minute.

The mode is as fun as its sounds and all the maps are pretty well designed but Vista’s mix of the namesake tower and large scale buildings mean this is the most requested map whenever we play.

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9. HIGHRISE (Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2)

I’m not a massive fan of MW2 but the multiplayer is pretty fun in short bursts and the Highrise map is one of the highlights.

Set, essentially, in the upper floor of two buildings and on another building’s rooftop inbetween – this is a close quarters map with plenty of scope for sneaking into the enemies’ tower.

One of my favourite tactics was using the lower walkways to get into the opposite tower and launch an attack behind the enemy – that is of course if I could get in without being spotted… easier said than done 😆

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8. ROOFTOPS (Resistance: Fall Of Man)

Another roof based map but this time set in the alternate sci-fi universe of Resistance.

Apart from the futuristic weapons this has one major difference from the other games on this list. There are several air cannons on the ground that you can walk over and be boosted skywards and back onto the rooftops.

Unlike Highrise (above) you won’t die if you fall off the building giving you the option of staying up high on the roof and shooting from distance or getting down on the streets & alleyways for a more intense firefight.

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7. INVASION (Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2)

Easily my favourite Call Of Duty map, I have had a fair few successful rounds in this small deserted town in Afghanistan.

With plenty of buildings to search and/or hide out in Invasion has just the right mix of open and enclosed areas.

It’s also big enough to have quite a bit of freedom of movement and also has a few different routes to various parts of the map so it’s best not to stay in one place too long.

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6. THE FORT (Uncharted 2: Among Thieves)

This is one of those few occasions where a DLC map (free I might add) turns out to be better than some of the maps the game shipped with.

The Fort is based on a level from the single player of the original Uncharted and it says a lot that this level is fantastic whether you’re playing the standard modes or co-op.

The amount of places you can get to in an attempt to outwit your enemies is great – whether you’re up above the open part of the map or underground near the tombs battling it out (or trying to get the rocket launcher :smile:) you can be sure you’ll be using as much of this brilliant map as possible.

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5. THARSIS DEPOT (Killzone 2)

It’s got to the stage, having played over a year’s worth of Killzone (not literally :lol:) that myself and my mates have a few favourite maps to play on.

One of these is Tharsis Depot – big enough to accomodate a full 16 v 16 but at the same time small enough that even 2 v 2 doesn’t feel too spaced out.

Set on the same refinery as the single player mission, Tharsis Depot is full of steel and has an elogated bottleneck between the bases down one side of the map. Co-incidentally 🙂 that is also where one team has to defend in search and destroy – which usually leads to all kinds of chaos.

With two floors to choose from there are plenty of ways to surprise your enemies and I am a HUGE fan of waiting around in the corridor just off the main room in the middle to shotgun any enemies that come my way 😎

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4. PORT VALDEZ (Battlefield: Bad Company 2)

This was one of the maps from the Battlefield: Bad Company 2 beta and it is still one of my favourite maps on the game.

The balance between defence and attack (in Rush mode) in terms of positioning of buildings etc is truly superb.

The last few bases of this massive map are fantastic and you really do have to consider your tactics. Making a run for it is all well good but you can almost guarantee a host of snipers will have their sights trained on the entrance of whichever base you’re at.

A really well designed map, especially considering the size and amount of bases in it.

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3. THE SANCTUARY (Uncharted 2: Among Thieves)

This map is my personal favourite from Uncharted 2. Whether it’s plunder, elimination, deathmatch or whatever – The Sanctuary almost always throws up a great match.

The underground tunnels are a fantastic addition in that they effectively add a third layer to proceedings and the risk/reward of positioning the Hammer on the exposed ledge is a stroke of genius.

In fact you can also climb to the top of the tower in each base, above the main rooftops so technically The Sanctuary has FOUR levels to play with. 😮

A monster of a multiplayer map considering how compact it is.

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2. VALPARAISO (Battlefield: Bad Company 2)

As with most of the Battlefield: Bad Company 2 maps Valparaiso has plenty of scope for both long range attacks and also close quarter battles.

It’s even possible to trek up to the top of the massive lighthouse to the side of the map for sniping opportunities – though heaven help you if you get spotted in there as you will be swiftly dealt with 😆

With plenty of hills to fight up/down on, this is a wonderfully varied map boasting four differently styled bases that will keep you entertained for ages.

The mixture of jungle environments just within this map is a testament to how well made it is – you’ll start in dense jungle before breaking into the open for a while until eventually you’ll find yourself in another dense jungle setting for an enclosed final base.

Most definitely my favourite multiplayer map for a long time but even then Valparaiso doesn’t take the number 1 slot…

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1. RADEC ACADEMY (Killzone 2)

Yep, the daddy of all multiplayer maps 😎

Radec Academy is a superbly designed map with both open areas and some really tight corridor and stairway areas which lead to some intense firefights.

The positioning of the search and destroy targets (for both teams) is inspired – essentially requiring you to hold a room that has three or four different entrances.

Meanwhile there is the opportunity to snipe from the balcony overlooking the square – but you’ll have be quick to take those chances as people don’t hang around… unless you’re lucky enough to find an unsuspecting soul taking stock in one of the doorways opposite 😎

Then of course you have the tunnels that run between each base and the building at the back of the map which can get quite crowded if a speaker spawns down there.

Overall for me personally, it’s tough to think of what more they could’ve done to improve Radec Academy – I sincerely hope it makes an appearance in the multiplayer mode of Killzone 3… whenever that appears.

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So there you go – my top picks for multiplayer action. Let me know via the comments if you agree? Maybe I’ve missed some out or perhaps you prefer a different map from those games?

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Red Faction: Guerrilla – Review (PS3)

As I said in my demo impressions, the main thing I took away from my brief glimpse of the game was how much fun it was.

And the full game is even more of a riot.

I’m beginning to feel that Red Faction: Guerrilla is a bit of an underrated gem. The guy in the game shop actually said to me ‘that is a great game’ when I bought it which is a first.

It’s your basic David vs Goliath battle with the Red Faction resistance (you guys) taking on the evil Earth Defence Force who have taken advantage of their position in power on Mars.

You’ll be tasked with various missions and side missions to weaken the EDF’s stranglehold on the colonies.

Red Faction isn’t a game you can rush through as to unlock the final main mission for each section you’ll need to perform 4 or 5 side missions (or destruct some serious EDF property).

Luckily the side missions are pretty cool and there is enough variety to stop things getting boring.

You could try House Arrest – getting into a building to rescue hostages and escaping with them – or Guerrilla Raid – taking out a specific building for the resistance. If you like driving you could try Transporter, which is essentially a timed race across the map to a safehouse. There is a lot to choose from.

But the main part of the game is the destruction. Buildings fall realistically and weakening them structurally can often mean a delayed collapse.

In one mission I started taking out a smoke chimney/tower from the base and it flashed up ‘destroyed’. I made a run for it, looked back and saw it was still standing. Noticed a few bits falling at the bottom of it as the EDF troops turned up in jeeps and started firing at me. Then, with a massive creak, the entire tower fell sideways in one piece RIGHT on top of the EDF, killing them all! 😎

The weapons are brilliant, ranging from the standard rifle and timed mines to rocket launchers and the superb Nano Rifle – which effectively disintegrates matter. Awesome for making supporting walls/beams disappear from a distance 😆

You can even unlock a jetpack if you get enough currency, which makes getting around a lot easier, even if you can only use it sporadically.

The carnage continues in multiplayer with your usual modes chucked in amongst the falling buildings. A special word goes to the offline multiplayer which is basically a pass the pad and see who can cause the most damage affair – it’s so addictive that you just have to keep playing it!

Overall then I heartily recommend Red Faction. It’s not massively difficult but it has a good solid story and is insanely fun. You can pick this up for about £15 pre-owned in most places and it will be money well spent.

Rating: 8/10

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MOST WANTED GAMES 2009/10 – PART ONE

This list started life as a Top Ten but as I began putting it together I thought I might as well just list everything that PS3 owners can look forward to in the future.

There were too many to fit in one blog so I’ve broken it down into two parts. The second part will be in the next week or so and will feature games that are further away on the horizon.

And so in no particular order, here’s what’s hot on the radar:

 

Terminator Salvation

Release Date: 19/05/09

I’ve read several previews of Terminator Salvation saying the game has ripped off Gears Of War and is similar is style. It certainly looks like Terminator has taken it’s inspiration from there.

And is this a bad thing? Obviously it’s great to have groundbreaking titles with fresh ideas but film licences are notoriously bad games (Iron Man anyone? :lol:).

If they can make a game half as good as Gears Of War with Terminators in it then I for one think that’s cool.

My only reservation is that the footage I’ve seen looks a little repetitive in parts but hopefully that won’t be a problem.

At the end of the day it’s been too long since we had a chance to shoot up some Terminators!

Here’s hoping for a downloadable Arnold skin for the main character at some stage!!!

Will certainly check the demo before buying though!

 

InFamous

Release Date: 26/05/09

InFamous has crept into this list at the last minute and the main reason I was reluctant to include it is the game’s apparent similarity to the forthcoming Prototype (see below).

Now I understand these two aren’t exactly the same but I do feel InFamous may not have the same impact as Prototype because the character is limited to a superpower based on electricity rather than a selection of powers.

Your character is called Cole, a man who not only survives a huge electrical explosion but actually gets powers from it. You’ll be chucking balls of electricity at enemies and using your electrical charge to glide through the air among other things.

Recent trailers & footage have hinted at some cool features and the good/bad karma angle seems interesting.

Graphically it looks great and it’s a PS3 exclusive so I suspect I’ll check it out at some stage depending on how much I enjoy the demo.

 

Prototype

Release Date: 09/06/09

Well it always seems the way – a style of game doesn’t get touched for ages then two come along at once.

I see absolutely no reason not to own both Prototype and InFamous if they are good enough. Both have a different story to tell and have been made by different people.

You play as Alex Mercer, waking up in the morgue and wondering what the hell is going on. You have no memory but luckily for you (not for everyone else :lol:) you can absorb other people’s appearances and memory by killing them 😮

And so the story begins as you try and piece together what the hell is going on and where your superpowers have appeared from.

Prototype seems to take itself less seriously than InFamous (performing an elbow drop on a tank :cool:) so I’m not sure how the story will play out.

Either way I’ll be getting this when it comes out in the Summer.

 

Batman: Arkham Asylum

Release Date: 09/06/09

I don’t think we’ve ever really had a great Batman game, although a friend vouches for Batman Begins, but Arkham Asylum looks like it could be something special.

Not restrained by being tied to a film the game has a level of freedom in design and story that isn’t often present in licensed games.

Basically Batman falls into the Joker’s trap by arresting him and taking him to the Asylum. The Joker escapes his chains and releases the inmates to take over the Asylum.

It’s up to Batman to punch, kick and batarang his way through.

It all looks great and the options for stealth or attack look pretty cool but I feel this one will come down to how they implement the control system.

Hopefully it’ll be easy enough to play and I’m looking forward to the demo, which should be with us in the next few weeks.

 

Red Faction

Release Date: 09/06/09

Another one that has crept into the list, Red Faction: Guerrilla makes an appearance based on how much fun the demo was.

I watched plenty of trailers and footage for this game without being overly impressed. The main selling point seemed to be the way everything destructs realistically and to me that wasn’t something of great interest – as long as it crumbles I don’t mind how it goes down. 🙂

But I’d underestimated how much fun it is to destroy things. Especially with an oversized hammer 😀

Might be worth a rent before I decide whether to invest but I’ll be keeping an eye on the reviews for this one.

 

Ghostbusters

Release Date: 16/06/09

Well we’ve certainly waited long enough – after being dropped by Activision Ghostbusters is almost upon us.

From the footage I’ve seen this could be a great game and to be honest with the original cast and the sound effects of the proton pack, Ecto 1 etc it could be a re-skinned version of any generic third person shooter and I’d be happy. 🙂

As it is the game seems to be getting ok feedback, maybe just above average, and apparently the script and delivery are excellent.

As someone who grew up with the films and cartoon TV series a decent Ghostbusters game has been a long time coming.

My inner child cannot wait to fire up his proton pack and bust some ghosts 😎

*sings On Our Own by Bobby Brown*

 

Call Of Juarez – Bound In Blood

Release Date: 30/06/09

And so we have the second of the Western themed games and this one seems a lot more linear and story driven than Rockstar’s Red Dead Redemption (featured in Part Two).

You control two brothers and have the option to use either as you progress through the levels.

Both of them have different special abilties, one is great with long range weapons and the other can target multiple opponents before letting loose with both barrels.

I like the look of this and while the game looks to lack a degree of freedom I think that in some cases it’s nice to play a game and be led by the story.

Again one to check the demo first but a probable purchase.

 

Fight Night Round 4

Release Date: Summer 2009

I enjoyed Fight Night Round 3 but, quite frankly, it was just the PS2 version with shiny graphics.

This is a whole new game engine built from the ground up and based on physics.

It looks incredible and the movement of the fighters is much improved. Also the boxers can now get right up close, the ‘invisible wall’ from Round 3 has been removed.

The knockdowns are much better, the repetitive knockdown animation is gone and each knockdown will happen in real-time, which looks brilliant.

The roster has been increased and Lennox Lewis & Mike Tyson are both welcome inclusions.

This will be great to play with your mates and I should imagine online will be great (EA certainly does online very well) but I’m hoping for an extended career mode in single player.

A demo is pencilled in for mid May so it’s not long until we get a chance to try it out.

 

Alpha Protocol

Release Date: October 2009

Alpha Protocol is a spy-RPG (Role Playing Game), meaning effectively that you have a say in how your characters statistics develop through the game.

Want to be a crack shot? Level up your gun skills. How about a deadly weapon with your hands? Level up your martial arts skills.

You take control of an agent who is so deep under cover even your fellow agents don’t know about you. You get to mould his skills to suit your style of play as you go from location to location completing missions.

This game sounds like it could be really fun.

Added into the mix is what sounds like an excellent decision making mechanic whereby you are given three answers to choose from when asked a question but instead of sitting deliberating (“well if I say that x might happen but if I say y this might happen”) you get 5 seconds to answer or (I believe) it picks a passive answer for you.

It’s nice to see developers putting out games that don’t necessarily sit in one genre and I think Aplha Protocol could be an awesome story-based gaming experience.

 

M.A.G

Release Date: TBC 2009

MAG stands for Massive Action Game. It would have to be a pretty big game to actually label itself ‘Massive’ wouldn’t it?

Most games have 32 online players, there are a few that can support 64 players at a time. So what would constitute ‘Massive?’

80? 100? 150 surely? 200?!

Try 256. All human opponents. 128 players a side.
We are pretty much talking an actual war here 🙂 and judging from the trailer above this could be great fun, complete chaos but fun nonetheless.

I’m interested to see if they can actually pull It off successfully. This could be the game SOCOM wanted to be.

 

Heavy Rain

Release Date: TBC 2009

Now this is an interesting one, Heavy Rain is aiming to be a whole new gaming experience – more interactive and filmic than ever before.

Very little is known about the story itself and several rumours have been flying around regarding gameplay etc

The most interesting of which is the idea that the story continues until the end regardless. If you die you don’t replay the level you switch to another (different) character and continue the story from their perspective.

If that’s true it sounds awesome. Regardless of the rumours the game is shaping up to be one of the best looking and innovative title that is on the horizon.

 

God Of War 3

Release Date: TBA (2009/10)

Do I need to write anything here? 😆

Seriously it’s shaping up to top the previous two games, which is really saying something.

This is one of the jewels in Sony’s crown. Critically acclaimed and loved by gamers, the God Of War franchise is edging ever closer to it’s next-gen debut.

The footage above is obviously from a conference on a big screen but it still looks great – the movement of Kratos has obviously been improved and the the gameplay seems to flow better.

This will be massive and I cannot wait for it to arrive.

 

So there you have it – the first part of my most wanted games. I honestly don’t think there has been a better time to be a gamer – whether it’s on PS3, X-Box or Nintendo.

The scope, scale and production values on games is immense and there is a real value for money feel to most games nowadays, with almost all titles clocked in between 8 and 10 hours of gameplay in solo player campaigns. Not to mention multi-player.

Hope you enjoyed the list and Most Wanted – Part Two should be up next week.