Top 20 PS3 Single Player Games

Metal Gear Solid 4

Looking back through some old articles I came across this list of the best single player games on PS3: Linkage.

This list was only written in April and yet the time since has probably been the best 6 months of my gaming ‘career.’

Not only have some fantastic solo player campaigns been released but I have also caught up on some single player epics I missed when they came out.

I knew the list needed to be extended and improved, as too many great single player games were missing.

So here you go – the top 10 is now a top 20 and any game from the initial list has it’s original chart position in brackets. You can also check out my full reviews (where possible) by clicking the title of each game:

20. PROTOTYPE

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.

 

19. RESISTANCE 2

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.

 

18. MIRROR’S EDGE (10)

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.

 

17. RAINBOW SIX VEGAS (9)

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.

 

16. RESIDENT EVIL 5

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.

 

15. KANE AND LYNCH (8) 

 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…

 

14. BATTLEFIELD: BAD COMPANY

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.

 

13. HEAVENLY SWORD (7)

 Heavenly Sword Main

Another game that didn’t garner the respect it deserves, primarily because it didn’t live up to the pre-release hype.

If you like God Of War you will like this game as it’s similar in style but it looks gorgeous in HD and I believe did a few bits (combos/blocking etc) better than the first two God Of War games.

12. ASSASSIN’S CREED (6)

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 I’m looking forward to the sequel which is on it’s way shortly.

 

11. GHOSTBUSTERS: THE VIDEO GAME

Ghostbusters

Ghostbusters: The Video Game’s plot is essentially the third movie – set in 1991 you’re a rookie who’s been drafted in to help with the ever increasing ghost workload. A huge paranormal blast sets off a chain of events that only one group of guys can deal with…

For me Ghostbusters was a short (5 hour) game that had me chuckling and geeking out despite it’s flaws – it won’t be to everyone’s tastes but it has a good single player storyline.

 

10. KILLZONE 2 (5)

Killzone2 2

Killzone 2’s biggest achievement is, possibly because of the brilliant graphics, sound and AI, that you feel involved and become embedded in the Killzone universal whenever you pick up the pad.

It’s not perfect by any means but it’s easily the best first person shooter I’ve played and I recommend anyone with a remote interest in this genre to check this out immediately!

 

9. BATMAN: ARKHAM ASYLUM

Batman

With some wonderful voice acting from the cast of the animated series, Batman: Arkham Asylum’s story moves at a good pace and familiar enemies are used to good effect throughout.

With such a vivid setting and a memorable selection of bad guys from Batman’s career it’s no surprise that Arkham Asylum is such a great game.

Despite the odds being stacked against it, Batman: Arkham Asylum is a quality title that has had a lot of care put into making it. I’d recommend this to anyone.

 

8. INFAMOUS

Infamous

So good it’s the only game this generation I’ve played through twice (seeing it’s rating bumped from 8/10 to 9/10), Infamous is a great game.

You control Cole McGrath, a courier who just happens to be carrying a package containing an electronic bomb when it goes off, devasting the city. Somehow Cole survives and, after coming out of a coma, realises the explosion has given him electrical superpowers.

From there on out the city is your oyster and there is plenty to do as you try to track down the people behind the explosion.

 

7. BIOSHOCK

bioshock

Bioshock has a great story to tell and it does it well with some interesting objectives and brilliantly designed levels.

There are several twists and turns in the plot, most of which are not obvious and it’s no surprise to me that a film version is in the works (although I believe currently suspended due to budget concerns).

Dark worlds like Rapture aren’t to everyone’s tastes but you really would be missing out on an awesome story if you decided not to book a trip to the underwater city.

 

6. GRAND THEFT AUTO IV  (4)

GTA IV

One the biggest selling games of this generation GTA IV features the fortunes (and lack therof) of Niko Bellic – an immigrant arriving in the US at Liberty City to find empty promises and broken dreams from his cousin Roman.

As you work your way up the criminal ladder you’ll encounter all sort of dodgy characters and befriend even more.

Liberty City is a wonderful, if run down, place and Niko Bellic’s story is one you will enjoy playing through so make sure you pick this game up as soon as possible.

 

5. FALLOUT 3

 Fallout 3

After a tough few hours at the start you will find yourself rewarded greatly for sticking with this awesome FPS / RPG.

The story line sprawls across the world depending on your actions and you’ll find yourself taking a break from main missions to explore the wasteland or help out other characters.

I could go on and on about various things that happened and how cool it was, how great the story was or whatever.

But Fallout 3 is a game that needs to be experienced first hand and your story will no doubt play out differently to mine.

 

4. METAL GEAR SOLID 4  (3)

Metal Gear Solid 4

Hideo Kojima’s tale of Solid Snake’s final mission is a brilliant showcase of the Playstation 3’s power.

This is a game that often gives you three or four different ways of approaching things – whether you realise it or not.

Metal Gear Solid 4 rewards those patient enough to stick with it by giving them a great gaming experience, with some memorable boss battles, that they won’t forget.

 

3. DEAD SPACE (2)

 Dead Space

Coming on somewhere between Event Horizon and Aliens, Dead Space is a third person survival horror game.

You take on the role of Isaac Clarke, a ship engineer who finds himself trapped onboard a stricken spaceship infested with an alien outbreak which is threatening to take over the ship.

This was one of the best games I played last year, it’s use of sound is immense and the fear of the unexpected they create is awesome.

I am not a big fan of horror movies or being made to jump all the time but Dead Space kept on the right side of all that by being unpredictable enough to be enjoyable as a ‘horror’ experience.

 

2. UNCHARTED: DRAKE’S FORTUNE (1)

Uncharted Drake's Fortune

Uncharted maps the  journey of Nathan Drake as he tries to find the lost treasure of El Dorado encountering, among other things, rival treasure hunters and mercenaries.

The graphics are unbelievable and the gameplay is well paced and well thought out. The characters and story and really well conceived and Nolan North, who voices Drake, is absolutely spot on with his irreverent humour and wisecracks.

At its heart Uncharted is an action adventure game much in the vein of Indiana Jones or Tomb Raider but, and I say this as a fan of both of these, it is better than either of them.

 

1. UNCHARTED 2: AMONG THIEVES

Uncharted 2

Uncharted 2 is a complete gaming package. There is plenty of taking out bad guys, lots of puzzles and some wonderful dialogue.

Naughty Dog really have done a great job on the voice acting and the expressiveness of the character models. It is easily the best I’ve come across (though Heavenly Sword was a close second).

I won’t spoil the story but for those who don’t know, Nathan Drake gets pulled back into that murky world of treasure hunting for hire. I loved the story of this game – with a few twists I saw coming and a few I didn’t.

If you own a PS3 there is no reason not to own this game – if you only have an XBox 360 or Wii then get yourself a PS3 Slim and enjoy one of the most finely crafted games I’ve ever experienced.

—————————————————————————————————————

So it’s a double for Nathan Drake as he takes the top two spots with his exploration adventures.

With 5 new games in the top ten it’s great to see the wide variety of game styles on offer to PS3 owners these days.

Hopefully people out there will find this list helpful – feel free to drop me some comments below on the games or if you’d have put anything else in the list?

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“I’m Not Crying, It’s Just Been Raining On My Face…”

Ghost Whisperer

NOTE: This piece contains potential spoilers regarding the following TV Shows and Games: 

  • Ghost Whisperer
  • Firefly/Serenity
  • Buffy The Vampire Slayer
  • Terminator: Sarah Connor Chronicles
  • GTA IV
  • Dead Space

If you plan to watch/play these DON’T READ THIS ARTICLE!!!!

So now that’s out of the way let me explain.

A few weeks ago a main character died on a TV show that I watch and I found myself a little choked up. That in itself is not really a surprise as I’m not the most difficult person to get an emotional response from – though we’re talking lump in the throat as opposed to actual tears.

It got me thinking about the reasons I would feel these emotions about fictional characters – was there some sort of checklist the programme-makers tick off to evoke these feelings? Or is it just that the makers/actors create the illusion differently each time?

Likewise with games, although it seems harder to trigger that same response (for me personally) – I haven’t really choked up over a game but I have often found myself shaken, or perhaps stunned is more accurate, by characters deaths.

Emo2

I discovered that research into this sort of thing has been going on for decades.

Back in 1956 an article entitled “Mass Communication and Para-Social Interaction” was written by Donald Horton and R. Richard Wohl. They discussed how the general public (or audience) felt connected to the TV presenters at the time because they were addressing the screen (and therefore the viewers) directly.

Research continued in the 70’s and 80’s and the term ‘Para-Social Interaction/Relationship’ came to mean the affection that viewers feel with the characters or personalities they see on screen.

So why was I upset when Jim died in Ghost Whisperer? Or knocked for six when Kate got shot at the end of GTA IV? I am a rational person – I have no delusions that these are real people, so what’s going on?

The answer it seems lies in further research…

Viewers attach themselves to characters – that is an obvious statement. If no one cared about the characters no one would watch the show. However it’s the depth of the attachment and the reasons for it that seem to cause these Para-Social Relationships.

Some people identify with characters, or at the very least facets of them, and invest emotionally because they feel a sense of familiarity when watching.

Emo3

Others idolize the characters or see them as role models. Someone they look up to perhaps, or aspire to be like.

Either way you’re drawn to these works of fiction and invest a great deal of emotion and time (especially in TV shows and games which can both last for hour upon hour) in them.

That is certainly a reasonable explanation – especially looking at something like GTA IV where you have crafted out a relationship with Kate for Niko (the character you control) by actually spending time with her and going on ‘dates’ etc. 

Several deaths in Buffy The Vampire Slayer shocked and moved me but for very different reasons.

The death of Buffy’s mother Joyce was possibly more to do with the way it was handled – with Buffy finding her stricken on the sofa, eyes wide open but unresponsive following a brain tumour. It was powerful stuff anyway but the bleakness and honesty of the scene was both upsetting and slightly disturbing. The fact that they showed the scene repeatedly during the episode also made it hit home harder.

Whereas the death of Anya, right at the end of the last season was upsetting in that a) she was a main character and b) in the chaos of the fight she was struck down almost without a death scene as the action continued.

Anya

Having said that Joss Whedon has a history of killing off main characters unexpectedly – in Serenity the ships pilot Wash is killed during a crash landing but at least with that death we got to see his wife’s reaction and emotion.

In Terminator: Sarah Connor Chronicles, Derek Reese is killed quickly and while the shock did hit home it wasn’t as emotional as the other deaths I mentioned, say Jim in Ghost Whisperer, which had a longer build up.

So is there a reason some deaths effect us more than others? Is it solely down to our relationship with the characters and how we feel about them? Or do the makers of these programmes have some tricks up their sleeves? 🙂

I suspect it’s a mixture of both. Of course the director can use certain shots/angles or a powerful piece of music under the scene to help things along but if the actors don’t put the performances in the response won’t be as strong.

Maybe the groundwork has already been laid by the director in revealing the character to you in a certain light to motivate you to like and identify with them?

Going back to the former point about actors, perhaps that is why the emotions I feel during games are weaker than TV/Film? As great as the graphics are in games these days they are not entirely lifelike and often the person voicing the character is doing so months before the character is even properly created.

I expect you would get more of an emotional tie to a character you’d created, say in something like World Of Warcraft. If a character you’d built up from scratch and moulded however you wanted was killed it would hit you harder I would guess. I don’t play those types of games so I couldn’t answer that question directly.

The closest I’ve ever come to that is when I tried the Sims in 2 player with my wife. We created ourselves but unfortunately I died in a house fire 😮 I certainly wouldn’t play that again 😦

Emo6

Either way I’m glad to feel those emotions watching. It restores a little of my faith in TV/Film that these shows can evoke feelings of emotional shock or choke me up – especially when so called ‘reality’ television seems to be taking over the TV schedules more and more all the time. Certainly a worrying trend if ever there was one.

As for games I look forward to increasingly improving stories – more of stuff like Fahrenheit, Bioshock, Infamous, GTA IV and Dead Space. Games that made me feel something.

As the world of gaming evolves even further I think we have plenty of great stories to look forward to playing through. 😎

 

Note: I found the website below really helpful in researching this article and I’m not one to take unwarranted credit so please check it out if you’re interested or want more information:

http://encyclopedia.jrank.org/articles/pages/6428/Attachment-to-Media-Characters.html

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TOP 10 SINGLE PLAYER PS3 GAMES

There are a great deal of amazing online games you can play with your mates *coughs* Killzone 2 *coughs* 😆 on your PS3.

While these are often really rewarding experiences it’s true that sometimes you just fancy going solo, staying ‘signed out’ and hitting some single-player action. Or you haven’t got the internet (Andrew (@shandation) I’m looking at you).

So for those of you looking for something a bit more story based that you can enjoy on your own here is my list of the top 10 best single player games:

10) MIRROR’S EDGE

Mirror’s Edge wowed everyone with its crisp, clean graphics and it’s unique first person perspective.

Obviously a lot of games have a first person viewpoint but most of these are ‘shooters’ whereas Mirror’s Edge is more of a parkour style run and jump adventure.

The game takes place in a slightly futuristic setting, in a city that is totally controlled by the government. They keep tabs on the general population by using surveillance cameras and tracking all forms of electronic communication.

You take on the role on Faith, a “Runner”, who uses rooftops and other means to help deliver physical messages between revolutionary groups within the city. Following on from a set of dramatic events Faith finds herself being hunted by the authorities and has to try to stop the government silencing her.

The perspective 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.

9) 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.

You play as Logan Keller a member of the elite Rainbow Six team. Initially sent into a small Mexican border town to flush out a terrorist ringleader. Soon after your escapades south of the border you’re deployed to Las Vegas where a new terrorist threat is imminent.

This game is a lot more tactical than your average fps, for the majority of the game you’ll have two AI teammates with you who you can order to move into position and even get them to ‘stack up’ (ie get ready to enter) at unopened doors.

And you’ll need all the help you can get. This isn’t an easy game and Ubisoft have gone for a more realistic tone. You’re probably looking at two shots before death and it’s possible for enemies to catch you with a headshot and kill you with one bullet.

Luckily your team mates are pretty intelligent and commanding them isn’t a problem.

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

8 ) KANE AND LYNCH

The first of two, in my opinion, vastly underrated PS3 games that make this list.

While not setting the world on fire and suffering from some control/camera issues Kane and Lynch was a brilliant gaming experience.

You take control of Adam ‘Kane’ Marcus, a criminal on his way to death row for crimes committed in Venezuela. 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…

My full review is available here: https://greghorrorshow.wordpress.com/2009/01/26/lynch-do-this-lynch-do-that-lynch-stop-murdering-the-hostages/

While this game is fairly linear some of the set pieces are really impressive, the bank job and the jailbreak spring to mind immediately as stand out levels.

You can pick this up for as little as £14.99 pre-owned and it’s certainly worth a play through.

7) HEAVENLY SWORD

Another game that didn’t garner the respect it deserves, primarily because it didn’t live up to the pre-release hype.

I played this a while after it came out and wasn’t really effected by the previous hype so I really enjoyed it.

If you like God Of War you will like this game as it’s similar in style but it looks gorgeous in HD and I believe did a few bits (combos/blocking etc) better than the first two God Of War games.

Heavenly Sword tells the story of Nariko, a brutal female warrior whose clan protects the “Heavenly Sword”, a sword from the god’s that actually drains the life from whoever uses it. King Bohan, ruler of the land, wants to get the sword and use it for his own means.

The battles are frantic, often with hundreds of soldiers onscreen at once and the cut scenes have some of the best production values I’ve ever seen.

Heavenly Sword has a great story but is fairly short by game standards – you’re probably looking at around 5-6 hours to finish it however they will be a fun filled few hours!

6) ASSASSIN’S CREED

Assassin’s Creed is the story of bartender Desmond Miles who is kidnapped by a nameless company and awakens to find himself strapped into a machine (The Animus) that unlocks deeply buried memories from Desmond’s ancestors that are intertwined within Desmond’s DNA.

The memory they are interested in is of a man called Altair, an assassin around the year 1191 in the Holy Land.

Effectively you play through Desmond’s memories as Altair (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.

The only problem I had with this game was the initial scouting – you cannot progress into certain areas (your memory is blocked 😮 ) until you have scaled a huge building and surveyed the surrounding area. I found this a bit boring and repetitive however you must stick with the game past this part to get the best of it.

This game is great fun and I’m looking forward to the sequel which is on it’s way.

5) KILLZONE 2

Don’t need to say much about this game really, my review can be found here: https://greghorrorshow.wordpress.com/2009/02/16/killzone-2-review-ps3/

The multi-player is what everyone has concentrated on and rightly so, however the solo mode is definitely worth playing.

The cinematics are brilliant and some of the set pieces really do feel like you’re there.

While it might not have the best storyline ever written if you have a PS3, whether you plan on getting online or not, this is an essential purchase.

4) GTA IV

One the biggest selling games of this generation GTA IV features the fortunes (and lack thereof) of Niko Bellic – an immigrant arriving in the US at Liberty City to find empty promises and broken dreams from his cousin Roman.

As you work your way up the criminal ladder you’ll encounter all sort of dodgy characters and befriend even more.

The amount of things you can do in GTA IV is mind boggling but never feels overwhelming.

Once you get the hang of the aim and cover systems you will be blasting your way round the city in no time.

This is one of those games you really have to play to believe. The way the world carries on around you, the overheard conversations of other pedestrians, the fact you could play this game for hours experiencing new things without even touching the missions.

Liberty City is a wonderful, if run down, place and Niko Bellic’s story is one you will enjoy playing through so make sure you pick this game up as soon as possible.

3) METAL GEAR SOLID 4

Well, well, well. If it isn’t the Magnum Opus of the PS3.

Hideo Kojima’s tale of Solid Snake’s final mission is a brilliant showcase of the Playstation 3’s power.

Metal Gear Solid 4 is set seven years after the events of the 2nd game (Metal Gear Solid 3 having been a prequel) and sees Snake back in action – but this time as an old man. Because of his accelerated aging process (play the other three games to find out why 😀 ) we find ourselves playing as a hero who is, I suspect, about 60.

Obviously this doesn’t really hamper him too much apart from the odd moan about his back giving him jip 😆 and where the previous games featured mainly stealth, Metal Gear 4 allows you to be a bit more gung ho.

This is a game that often gives you three or four different ways of approaching things – whether you realise it or not.

One thing about the story is that the cut scenes can be long – and I mean long. Some of them clocked in well over half an hour and obviously that’s a fair while to just sit watching.

But this is one game that rewards those patient enough to stick with it by giving them a great gaming experience, with some memorable boss battles, that they won’t forget.

2) DEAD SPACE

Coming on somewhere between Event Horizon and Aliens, Dead Space is a third person survival horror game.

You take on the role of Isaac Clarke, a ship engineer who finds himself trapped onboard a stricken spaceship infested with an alien outbreak which is threatening to take over the ship.

Full review of the game here: https://greghorrorshow.wordpress.com/2009/02/10/dead-space-review/

Needless to say this was one of the best games I played last year and it deserves to be above both GTA IV and Metal Gear 4 for its storytelling and atmospheric setting.

The use of sound is immense and the fear of the unexpected they create is awesome. I am not a big fan of horror movies or being made to jump all the time but Dead Space kept on the right side of all that by being unpredictable enough to be enjoyable as a ‘horror’ experience.

1) UNCHARTED: DRAKE’S FORTUNE

Nathan Drake, the character you control, is an explorer and treasure hunter.

Uncharted maps his journey as he tries to find the lost treasure of El Dorado encountering, among other things, rival treasure hunters and mercenaries.

Initial impressions article here: https://greghorrorshow.wordpress.com/2009/01/26/uncharted-drakes-fortune-quality/

I still maintain this is possibly the best PS3 game I have played as an overall experience.

The graphics are unbelievable and the gameplay is well paced and well thought out. The characters and story and really well conceived and Nolan North, who voices Drake, is absolutely spot on with his irreverent humour and wisecracks.

At its heart Uncharted is an action adventure game much in the vein of Indiana Jones or Tomb Raider but, and I say this as a fan of both of these, it is better than either of them.

There is no reason for anyone not to buy this as it’s now in the platinum range (£19.99) and can actually be bought online for as little as £14.99. Get it.. now!

So there you have it.

This list is obviously based on stuff I have played and enjoyed so there are bound to be a few great games missing (Bioshock, which I must get at some stage, Call Of Duty (although again I’ve heard that is stronger in multi-player?) and Resi Evil 5 but I’ve only played a couple of levels of that so far).

I have to give an honourable mention as well to Fallout 3 – I am nowhere near finishing this as the game is absolutely huge with tons to do and lots of different ways for your character to affect the story. If you’re looking for a game to get lost in for ages, as opposed to the usual 8-12 hours, I would give this a thumbs up.

The list above was formed with shorter bursts of gaming in mind and with a view to gamers who’d rather finish a few 10 hour games than start four or five 30+ hour games and never get to the end of them!

Feel free to add any games you’ve enjoyed in the comments that might have been left off the list.

Killzone 2 – Initial Thoughts

So I managed to get my hands on a (legal) copy of Killzone 2 yesterday and last night played through the first two levels.

Let’s start off with the bad…

The main failing for me in the game is the stutter as parts of the level load up. Why couldn’t they have just sorted an install on the hard drive like every other game? It’s a minor issue but really when you look at the production values of the game itself it jars with everything else. 😡

Only other thing I had a problem with from my time with it was that while your buddies AI is realistic with taking cover, backing off etc a few times they just stood still in front of me in a corridor. Obviously waiting for me to trigger the next scene but being stuck behind them. (Tip: L1 to melee attack them round the back of the head and they soon move 😀 )

That was it for the gripes and to be honest I think it’s mainly the high expectations the game has set itself that made these stick out.

However Killzone 2 is an absolute blast – I had read how hardcore the enemies are but experiencing it first hand is brilliant.

They take cover, give each other covering fire and actually advance from cover to cover towards you unless you keep them pinned in. 😮

You go in guns blazing and you’re dead. Simple as.

For any sort of accuracy you’ll need the zoomed in view for your gun. The normal view is more for scatter fire and should only be used in close quarters – or panic moments 😆

Obviously mutli-player isn’t up and running yet so haven’t been able to test that out – although I suspect that is where the majority of gameplay will come for Killzone 2.

I thoroughly enjoyed the opening couple of levels and I will hopefully get stuck into this more at the weekend and let you know how things go (spoiler free of course!). 😎

Dead Space – Review

‘In space no-one can hear you scream…’

But in my living room they can.

I’m happy to admit to being a big old scaredy cat when it comes to shocks and jumps. I can take the gore and guts without problem but repeatedly being made to jump is something I find extremely annoying.

So I began Dead Space with positive endorsements all round but a slightly heavy heart with regards to what I was letting myself in for. 😦

It probably would’ve been easier for the game studio to pack this game full of shocks and it still would have been received well. However what they have done is create a tension filled feeling of unease that starts almost as soon as you enter the stranded USG Ishimura.

And it’s that feeling of vulnerability, the pull in your stomach – actually hoping there is a shock around the corner rather than some crazy event that leaves you wondering what the hell is going – that makes this a stand out game for me.

You play as ship engineer Issac Clarke, part of the crew on a repair/salvage spacecraft that is on it’s way to the stricken USG Ishimura, a mining spaceship upon which Issac’s girlfriend Nicole is stationed.

No-one is responding on board so you’ve been sent it to find out what the problem is and see if they need any help.

So far so Sci-Fi, the difference here is that you aren’t a marine or soldier – you’re an engineer. As such you don’t have super-human strength or machine guns, just the tools of the trade. Ok so it’s tools of the trade from the future but nonetheless, it’s not what you”d want (or expect) given the circumstances.

Before I go any further I have to mention the fact that the entire first chapter of this game, and the introductory fmv sequence, is among the best openings I have played in a game. The set up is exquisite and I won’t spoil too much for you within this review.

After entering the ship you become seperated from the rest of your crew, your only communication being over your audio/visual headset.

There is no HUD (Heads Up Display) in Dead Space – your health bar is a strip on the back of your spacesuit and any objectives/information come via hologram projected ahead by your headset.

This makes for a fairly immersive experience. I don’t need to look anywhere other than the action to see how much life I have left – same for ammo, it’s projected just behind the weapon so you can see it as you aim without looking away.

I have often heard Dead Space called ‘Resident Evil meets Alien’ but to be honest I suspect a better description is ‘Resident Evil meets Event Horizon.’

The shocks are broken up by some particularily freakish moments, often involving no input from the player – we merely spectate – as the virus/disease that has hit the ship takes hold. 😐

Another thing I liked about this game was the fact that it also challenged my notion of gunplay. In other games, regardless of whether you’re shooting soldiers in World War 2 or zombies in Resident Evil, a well placed head shot (or two) is sufficient to kill off your enemy. Not so in Dead Space.

Because of the nature of the infected beings you have to dismember them one limb at a time. You shoot it’s head off it still comes for you. You shoot it’s legs off it drags itself by it’s hands to you. 😥

This instills even further panic as you know you’re looking at probably four shots to kill off an enemy. At least with the Plasma Cutter, which is your main weapon.

You also have a glorious weapon called a Ripper which is effectively a circular saw on an extendable rope that you can flail round madly cutting up all and sundry. 😆

Different weapons and equipment can be bought at stores strategically placed throughout the chapters and each of the weapons has a different feel, which is great.

The story is kept fresh with a few twists and turns – along with the introduction of further characters and new enemy types, which helps greatly with the pacing.

There are a few sections of Zero gravity, which show off the game’s amazing physics engine and while these are very well done it was the few moments venturing outside the ship which I found stunning.

As you come outside a clock races down on your back indicating your oxygen level and the sound of the game drops out completely. All you can hear is Issac’s breathing. The view of space at these moments is immense and I often had a mad scramble to get back to the oxygen filled ship after staring too long at the scenery!

Overall Dead Space was one of the best games I played in 2008 and with a playthrough time of under 10 hours is a perfect pick up and play game. Something to run alongside your 40 or 50 hour game of Fallout 3/GTA IV.

I would recommend this to anyone (over 18!) for it’s brilliant gameplay, amazing sound and great storytelling.

Rating: 9/10