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Ape Escape The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D Transformers: Dark of the Moon Captain America: Super Soldier Cars 2 and more...

Mini Zombies

Resident Evil:The Mercenaries 3D

Family Matters F.E.A.R. 3

New West Call of Juarez:The Cartel reviewed

I S S U E 2 6 / Vo l . 3 August 2011

w w w. g a m e c c a . c o. z a


Inside 6 From the Editor 8 Unstuck Army of one... 10 History Fate twists through the Call of Juarez franchise... 16 Previews All the threes... 13 games to look forward to! 42 PS Zealot A little head movement, please! 44 Xbox Beat Summer of Arcade time 46 House of Mario 25 years of Zelda 48 Blood Ties A different kind of family enterprise... 52 Reviews 14 titles to try 88 Flashtastic Run! Just run! 90 Mobility Some fresh names in mobile gaming 92 Essential Classics Zombies... gotta love ‘em! 94 Hardware Great gear for gamers (and everyone else, too!)

THIS MONTH’S COVER Same location, different era for Call of Juarez... Read our review on page 54.

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106 From Space An open letter to Turn 10 Competitions 33 Call of Juarez: The Cartel

gamecca contents • issue 26 • August 2011


Previews

18

Battlefield 3

20

The Sims Medieval: Pirates & Nobles

22

Gears of War 3

24

NHL 12

26

Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception

28

FIFA 12

30

Resistance 3

32

X-Men: Destiny

34

The Darkness 2

35

F1 2011

36

Ace Combat: Assault Horizon

37

Dark Souls

38

Tropico 4

GAMECCA Vol. 3 Issue 26 August 2011 Editor: Walt Pretorius walt@gamecca.co.za Writers: Alex Scanlon Alexia Pestana Brian Murdoch Bryan Banfield Charlie Fripp Christo van Gemert Dion Scotten Dylan Bouch James Francis Lein Baart Suvesh Arumugam

Reviews

Letters: letters@gamecca.co.za

54

Call of Juarez: The Cartel

58

F.E.A.R. 3

62

Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D

64

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2

68

Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D

70

Transformers: Dark of the Moon

72

Ape Escape

74

Wii Play Motion

76

PlayStation Move Heroes

78

Theatre of War 3: Korea

80

Cars 2

82

Captain America: Super Soldier

84

Alcatraz

86

The Next Big Thing

Competition Entries: competitions@gamecca.co.za Newsletter Subscriptions: www.gamecca.co.za Design & Photography: 1337 Media Technical Support: Brian Murdoch Marketing Contact: Katia Taliadoros katia@gamecca.co.za

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gamecca contents • issue 26 • August 2011

Copyright © 1337 Media CC 2009 - 2011

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In Threes... From the Editor

by Walt Pretorius

I

seem to recall that I mentioned something about ‘threes’ last month. It was because of all the threes that are coming out in the gaming world this year, and because we had just started our third volume. Something like that. Well, I am not sure if I jinxed it, but it has been a month of threes in the Gamecca office - as in ‘bad things come in threes’. Anyway, the culmination of one of these threes left one of my trusty consoles twitching on the corner of my desk, resulting in the need to get a new one. So I bought a new one. That’s not particularly unusual, but as a video game journalist, I am somewhat spoiled - or I expect to be, at least. Having to buy hardware is something that doesn’t sit well with

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me. OK, I’ll give you a moment to get over your anger with me for saying that... What it did do is lead me down a meandering mental path through the state of the video game industry in this country - or rather, the attitudes of overseas towards South Africa as a video gaming territory. First off, I need to say that I respect our local video game distributors immensely. It’s not really easy in this country, largely because we are still considered an emerging nation. Gaming isn’t as widespread here as it is in, say, America or Europe (on a per capita basis, of course) so the challenges that our local guys face are immense, at times. And yet they make it work. We generally get games on time, and we are not really left wanting for titles. A large

percentage of the new releases make it here. But they don’t just face the challenges of our own country - at least I don’t believe they do. They are also faced with attitudes from overseas. Yes, there are some companies that see South Africa as a valuable territory, sure... but I think that there are many that don’t see the potential that is to be found here. We are a drop in the ocean, really, particularly when it comes to sales. And then, on the other side of the coin, you get local consumers who love to complain about things, and expect that we get the same treatment as the rest of the world - video gaming journalists included. That, friends and neighbours, is simply not going to happen, not until we become truly competitive in the market. And that is still a long way away. So here’s a thought - and it’s going to sound a bit like something Oprah would say, if she was a gaming journalist... next time we want to complain, let’s rather take a long, hard, realistic look at the situation, and be grateful that there are people brave enough to take on the challenge of bringing video games to South Africa. It’s not the easiest market to supply, after all. And we do, when you really look at it, get almost all the benefits that we expect... and we are hardly entitled to them, because video gaming ain’t exactly a human right. OK, that’s it for the preachy bit... let’s get on with the mag. It’s 108 pages of gaming goodness - a number which is divisible by three... creepy. g

gamecca column • issue 26 • August 2011


All By Myself Unstuck

by Charlie Fripp

T

here was a rather interesting article published recently, wherein the author questioned whether single-player games are doomed or not. I can understand his point that gamers already pay huge amounts for games, and they almost expect the title to have added-extras like free DLC or multiplayer. He was leaning more towards the thought that single-player-only games need to change in order to stay relevant in the market, but I kind of disagree. While I can see his point, I still enjoy a very good solo game. I might be one of a few, but I don’t really care if a game has multiplayer or not, as long as the story and all other aspects of the title is up to par. There is nothing worse than playing a game that could have been developed a lot better than what it actually was. On the other side of the spectrum (and this is where I kind of agree) Fallout 3 is a good example of a brilliant game that should have had multiplayer. It would have been absolutely awesome to trek through the wasteland with a friend and take on some of those really ugly monsters as a team. I don’t know how many times I thought to myself that it would have been super cool to have had a partner round about now. Thinking quickly, the first BioShock would have gone down rather smoothly with multiplayer as well. There were some parts where a partner would have come in real handy, and it also creates a sense of accomplishment when big targets are taken down together. But then there are also some games that didn’t really benefit from multiplayer, like Fable 3. It was cool in

8

the beginning, but it’s really a game that should be completed by the player alone. Sure, doing the money glitch was fun, but the multiplayer didn’t really have a point. Yeah sure, you could complete all the missions with a friend, but the game wasn’t that hard to begin with. Jumping around topics (it’s just the way they are popping into my head), one of the best multiplayer additions to a game was for Portal 2. The first game was pretty good by itself, but when the developers added 2-player to Portal 2, it completely changed the tone and feel of the game. It’s truly one game that reaped the benefits of multiplayer. But with that said, I don’t think that the industry has to do a major rethink about single-player versus multiplayer games. We have seen it before, and games that were previously multiplayeronly have now included singleplayer campaigns as well, like the upcoming Battlefield 3. There are some games that warrant multi-player and some that obviously need single-player, but there should be a tug-of-war to include both. The developers have to look at the overall quality of the product, and

if they are satisfied that one aspect won’t detract from the other, then they should include both modes. Ok, virtually all FPS games will include multiplayer, but titles like the first Dead Space did perfectly fine without it. Players of the sequel will also testify that the multiplayer of number two wasn’t exactly anything to write home about, hence the fact that it could have been left out. I have been playing games for a very long time, and I can truly say that I have never looked at a game and thought that it should have only had the one or the other. Each game is perfect in their own right and I respect the developer’s decision to either include multiplayer or not. Although, Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood totally should’ve had co-op. g

gamecca column • issue 26 • August 2011


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OUT 9 SEPTEMBER 2011


Feature

History Recurring and otherwise…

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gamecca feature • issue 26 • August 2011


by Walt Pretorius

S

ometimes fate twists and turns and snakes its way through history, tying people and families together across vast expanses of time. That’s a concept that is popular in fiction, from movies to books – and even video games. For a prime example, take a look at Techland’s Call of Juarez franchise. This series, which has just enjoyed its third title release, may have many characters in it, but it really revolves around two families, and a stash of treasure dating back to the days of the conquistadors. The original game was released in 2006 for PC, with an Xbox 360 port released around a year later. It told the story of two men; William “Billy Candle” Mendoza and Reverend Ray McCall. Mendoza was a young drifter, a Mexican ne’er-do-well hunted by the law and constantly getting himself in trouble. McCall was a gunslinger turned preacher who pounded the Bible as fast as he fired his six-guns. While on opposite sides of the law, these two find themselves forced together when a bandit leader named Juarez (after the town he lives in) enters the picture. The bandit leader is after an amulet that Billy has, which will show the location of a fabled treasure – the Gold of Juarez. The legendary treasure was believed to be a ransom to be paid to Spanish conquistadors to secure the release of Montezuma, the leader of the native Mexican Tenochtitlan people. As fate would have it, Juarez’s real name is Juan Mendoza, and he is Billy’s real father (and is also responsible for the death of Billy’s mother and step-dad.) When Ray rises to the challenge, he is bested by Juarez, leading to a fight between Billy and the bandit. Ray recovers just long enough to kill Juarez from behind, allowing him to die happy. The original title got mixed responses from the press and public. Excellent voice acting, good graphics and a solid

gamecca feature • issue 26 • August 2011

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Feature

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gamecca feature • issue 26 • August 2011


multiplayer experience all got praised, but the game was demanding on PC requirements, and sometimes showed physics problems. However, possibly the best appreciated aspect of the title was its setting: Wild West games were (and still are) few and far between. Mid-way through June of 2009, a second game was added to the franchise. Instead of being a sequel, Call of Juarez: Bound in Blood investigated the early days of the popular Reverend Ray McCall, and his brother Thomas. This was before the days that Ray had found his calling, and the two brothers go from standing side by side in the American Civil War to being bitter enemies. With their home destroyed during the war and on the run from the law, the McCall brothers (along with their younger sibling, William) decide to high-tail it to Mexico, in the hopes of finding the Lost Treasure of Cortez, with the view to use the money to rebuild their family farm. There they meet a woman named Marissa, who it turns out is the mistress of a dangerous Mexican outlaw named… that’s right, Juan ‘Juarez’ Mendoza. See that fate thing in action? Things go horribly wrong in Mexico for the McCalls, with greed and lust driving a wedge between the older men, while William tries to keep the peace. While rescuing William from the nefarious Mendoza, Ray realises that Thomas has fled with Marissa, who knows how to unlock the secret of the treasure. A final confrontation sees William killed as he tries to prevent Ray from murdering Thomas. Thomas marries Marissa, and the devout William’s sacrifice inspires Ray to become a man of the cloth (sort of – he’s still a gunslinger later on, after all.) Although criticised for lack of variety, the co-op play and general presentation of Bound in Blood received good reviews. The third instalment of the series, the recently released Call of Juarez: The Cartel gamecca feature • issue 26 • August 2011

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Feature

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glamecca feature • issue 26 • August 2011


(reviewed on page 54 of this issue) makes a major break from the rest of the franchise, while still keeping to the ‘twists of fate’ idea. Instead of being set in the Wild West, the game takes place in modern day Los Angeles, as a special task force spanning three law-enforcement agencies takes on a dangerous Mexican drug cartel. The main characters in the game come from very different backgrounds. Kim Evans is an African-American FBI agent whose brother is involved with all the wrong kinds of people. Eddie Guerra is a DEA operative who seems to have some dodgy dealings with elements on the wrong side of the law. And representing the LADP, none other than Ben McCall, a descendant of the characters played in the first two games – he is still a gun-toting, Biblequoting warrior. And, as fate would have it, the cartel they are fighting against… none other than the Mendoza family. Techland’s decision to move the franchise in what is a rather different direction, complete with three-player co-op and a new setting, has been getting very mixed responses from the industry. There is an attraction to the whole Western idea, whether it be in games, films or books. This fascinating period of history serves games set in it very well, and moving away from it – despite the fact that the developer tried to keep a very Western feel in the new game – is a questionable decision. Whether the move to a new setting and a more modern feel marks the end of Call of Juarez, or whether the franchise will return to its historical roots is unclear. The third game has only just been released, after all. But what does stand out for the franchise is the continuity that Techland have created within it, the twists of fate spanning many decades. Perhaps the next outing will see the McCalls and Mendoza’s doing battle in a futuristic setting? Time will tell, and if the franchise is so-fated, we will almost certainly see more from Call of Juarez. g gamecca feature • issue 26 • August 2011

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Previews Highlights 18 Battlefield 3 Combat on the streets 20 Gears of War 3 Is this the end? 22 Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception Back in action! 23 Resistance 3 The final fight...

A

s the end of the year slowly approaches, we’re starting to see more news about big name games. There are a lot of worthwhile titles on the horison, giving us just a little bit of time to catch up on any last-minute gaming we need to do with those older games... The end of year awesome game rush is almost upon us; prepare yourself! And does anybody else find all those ‘threes’ weird? g

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gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011


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Battlefield 3

Grab Your Gear The fight is going street-level

F

or as long as gamers can remember, the Battlefield franchise has been the source of heated action, excellent plots and riveting multiplayers sessions. The franchise has come a very long way in delivering all the action that gamers have come to expect, and with a whole bunch of add-ons and expansion packs, it’s truly one of the most expansive gaming experiences. The next iteration of the franchise, Battlefield 3, is set to launch in October and there are many gamers who simply can’t wait to get their grubby little paws on it. It has been rumoured that this one will be the biggest and grandest of

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by Charlie Fripp

all the titles. In terms of gameplay, it will feature all the great elements from the previous games, such as snipers, engineers and tanks. Battlefield 3 will also include a whole host of extras, such as jet fighters, the prone position and 64-player multiplayer matches on the PC. Because of the limited amount of players on consoles, the space has been reduced, but the flying areas have been kept the same. Battles will be ringing out in places like Paris, Tehran, Sarajevo, New York and Wake Island, just to name a few, but the bulk of the action will be down on street level,

gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011


urban areas and landscapes that will make vehicle combat easier. For the single-player campaign, the story will take place in 2014 with players assuming the role of Sergeant Henry Blackburn and Marine Sergeant Miller. For Blackburn’s tour of duty, players will lead a five-man squad to locate and find an investigating squad of US soldiers, who have been in search of chemical weapons. After engaging some enemies, the team members are caught in a massive earthquake and it can be assumed that they will have to make their way to safety.

For multiplayer, the class-based system will return with a couple of slight changes. The classes will be Assault, Support, Engineer and Recon, and while there is no medic on-board, the Assault soldier will be able to carry a defibrillator unit and med-kits. For the gamers who frequently use LMGs, they will be happy to learn that they will now come equipped with bipods, which can be deployed at any time. Other changes include the way suppressive fire affects the party being shot at. It will blur their screen and make them less accurate with firing back, while the engineer will receive a flashlight that can blind other players. g

AT A GLANCE: Developer: Dice Publisher: Electronic Arts Distributor: Electronic Arts gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011

Oct 2011 Platforms

On a grand scale, Battlefield 3 will be a definite winner.

PC X360 PS3 Wii PSP DS 3DS

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Let’s hope the pirates add some ‘cool’ here…

by Alex Scanlon

I

t was, everyone will agree, inevitable. Although The Sims: Medieval perhaps left a little to be desired in terms of its game ideas, anything with the name “Sims” on the cover turns into gaming gold when it comes to sales… and so a follow-up to the original release was never really in question. The Sims Medieval: Pirates & Nobles is pretty much an expansion pack, adding new adventures and objects to the world. There will be one new kingdom ambition, new quests (which apparently follow an epic story arc, although we’ll argue the use of the word epic), new

signature objects, new traits, 140 themed objects, outfits and a new treasure-hunting activity. What it won’t have is anything that adjusts the way the game is played. If you enjoyed the original release, this one will likely be right up your alley, as it delivers more of the same. If you felt that there were things lacking in the final execution of the original, it seems unlikely that this expansion will change your mind. Still, it’s good to see that this new spin-off is getting a bit more attention. Perhaps a level of continuity between ambitions will be on the cards for a later product. g

AT A GLANCE: This first Sims Medieval expansion looks like it will offer the player more of the same, without any game changing elements. Developer: Sims Studio Publisher: Electronic Arts Distributor: EA South Africa

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Sep 2011 Platforms

The Sims Medieval: Pirates & Nobles

More of the Same

PC X360 PS3 Wii PSP DS 3DS

gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011


Gears of War 3

Gearing Up for War This is going to be bloody

T

he Gears of War franchise has been keeping gamers glued to the monitors for a very long time, and now the series will finally come to a spectacular end. Well, the franchise is supposed to come to an end, but we all know that developers don’t like to let go of moneymaking machines. Take Halo, for example… The Gears of War 3 multiplayer beta launched a while back, and although it has already closed, it gave players a bit of an insight as to what to expect. The graphics

22

by Charlie Fripp have pretty much stayed the same, but there have been some noticeable differences in detail. As expected, the control layout has been kept identical to the previous two versions, which is a good thing for returning players. In terms of the plot to the third title, players will once again assume the role of Marcus Fenix, but this time the Gears team has moved on to the island of Vectes, and lives in an aircraft carrier called Raven’s Nest. The story also takes place 18 months after the events of the second

gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011


game, which concluded with the fall of Jacinto. The story was written by Karen Travis, who has been responsible for three Gears of War novels, and is currently working on two more. Due to a series of really unfortunate events, the Locust have started to become infected and mutate into the Lambent. This, naturally, is a problem for the Gears team, and the Lambent are evolving into a completely new enemy. There is also a new threat on the island, in the

form of the Stranded, who has been living there with the other survivors. Developer Epic Games’ Cliff Bleszinski said that the third and final game in the franchise will answer a lot of questions that players might have about the world and the history of it. For the first time in the series, the game will also four-player co-op, which is a very welcome addition to the franchise. At certain parts, the player will also be able to take control of other playable characters, as well as a mech suit. g

AT A GLANCE: Developer: Epic Games Publisher: Microsoft Distributor: Microsoft gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011

Sep 2011 Platforms

With the conclusion of the franchise a lot of questions will be answered.

PC X360 PS3 Wii PSP DS 3DS

23


NHL 12

Boxing on Ice …and some hockey, too.

T

he Americans call it ice hockey but I like to think of it as boxing on ice and this newer title of NHL looks to be a cracker. With an all new full contact physics engine the gamer will almost taste the blood in his mouth. It’s not just the fighting that can hurt your opponent; smash them into the walls and shatter glass, knock players down and cause all kinds of pain. Also new to this year’s title will be balance… if you’re being pushed and shoved while skating you can use you balance to shrug off opposing players as well use it for faster skating, or even to help to slow down. NHL will also have a Be A Pro mode, just like FIFA, in

by Dylan Bouch which you can build your own personal career in the team of your choice. This year’s title will also have dynamic goal keepers, which makes them fair game while charging down the ice for a goal. They will also be able to move more freely than ever before and you can even play as a goalie in Be A Pro mode. The introduction of anticipation AI will have the computer controlled characters more aware of the game around them and the AI characters will also have more personality. Some players which are aggressive will tend to make more player contact and fight, for example. g

AT A GLANCE: Developer: EA sports Publisher: Electronic Arts Distributor: EA South Africa

24

Sep 2011 Platforms

Overall the game is great but if you don’t understand the game or the rules, this won’t fun for long.

PC X360 PS3 Wii PSP DS 3DS

gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011


” are trademarks or registered trademarks of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. “

” is a trademark of the same company.“Ô” is a registered trademark of Sony Corporation.

Resistance 3™ ©2011 Sony Computer Entertainment America LLC. Published by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe. Developed by Insomniac Games. “Resistance 3” is a trademark of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe. All rights reserved.

“2”, “PlayStation”, “PS3” and “

18V


Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception

Into the Wastes

More awesome adventure with Nathan Drake

S

ony’s PlayStation exclusive Uncharted franchise will be seeing a third instalment arriving towards the end of the year, amid much excitement from fans. And why shouldn’t they be excited? The Uncharted series has managed to deliver excellent, plot-driven game experiences since the word go. This, combined with truly high-end visuals and great voice acting, not to mention tons of really addictive action, has become a hallmark of this much loved set of games. The third instalment of Uncharted, subtitled Drake’s Deception, will see the protagonist Nathan Drake return as he heads for the fabled “Atlantis of the Sands.” As he makes his way into the shifting wastes of the Arabian desert, Drake and his mentor, Victor Sullivan, will clash with a shadowy organisation, leading them to test their limits and ultimately face their deepest fears. Games that play out like movies make for great entertainment, particularly if there are strong characters

26

by Walt Pretorius

and plots build into them to back the idea up. Considering the Uncharted track record, Drake’s Deception will almost certainly deliver just that kind of experience. But there’s more to this game than a compelling tale and characters that are believable and generally awesome… Naughty Dog are going bigger this time around, in every way they can. That means bigger set pieces, improved combat (including deeper gunplay), improved graphics, better physics and revamped environmental effects. The game will also see improvements to its multiplayer offering, with competitive and co-operative gaming on the cards when it hits shelves in November of this year. In all, there’s a lot to be excited about – even if you don’t read the above improvements and new ideas. The franchise has never failed to impress, and we see no reason why it should start now. Fans and newcomers alike will undoubtedly get a kick out of Nathan Drake’s third adventure. g

gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011


AT A GLANCE: Developer: Naughty Dog Publisher: SCEE Distributor: Ster Kinekor gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011

Nov 2011 2011 Platforms

With a sterling track record for the franchise, Uncharted 3 will likely deliver an awesome experience for adventure fans.

PC X360 PS3 Wii PSP DS 3DS

27


FIFA 12

Round 12

Taking the ball to new heights by Charlie Fripp

T

he FIFA franchise hardly needs any introduction, and now in its twelfth edition, there isn’t a lot more that gamers don’t already know about the title or haven’t experienced for themselves. It seems as though Electronic Arts are just going from strength to strength and there is no stopping them. The FIFA franchise has cemented itself as one of the best football games on the market at the moment, but even with the high success rate, there is still room for a bit of improvement. FIFA 11 gave gamers the opportunity to play as the goalie, but that didn’t go

down too well with most. In terms of graphics, the visuals have just become the best in the genre. As console and PCs become stronger and new coding is developed, the ability has also arisen to create the most life-like characters in any sports title. The control scheme is expected to stay the same and all the great clubs from around the world will also be included, while players lead their team to the ultimate glory. It is by far one of the most successful franchises in its genre, and regular as well as new players will definitely not be disappointed. g

AT A GLANCE: Developer: EA Sports Publisher: Electronic Arts Distributor: EA South Africa

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Sep 2011 Platforms

With all the changes, this one should be the best we have seen so far.

PC X360 PS3 Wii PSP DS 3DS

gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011


Resistance 3

Rise Up! Retaking the planet

W

ar… dun dun… what is it good for? Well, in the case of the Resistance franchise, apparently absolutely nothing, as the song says. The start of the third instalment of this popular PlayStation exclusive first-person shooter franchise shows that the invading Chimera forces were victorious, and America has been lost. It’s 1957 – four years after the previous game – and Nathan Hale is dead, while Joseph Capelli has been dishonourably discharged from the military and lives in hiding with his new wife and child. His resignation to this fate is soon shattered, though, when a scientist approaches him with a plan that will deal a devastating blow to the Chimeran forces occupying the planet. As the world’s climate collapses, Capelli will make his way to New York City to fight the terrifying invaders once again in Resistance 3. Developers Insomniac Games are putting a lot into this title, it would seem. Not least of which, we have Capelli’s epic journey from Oklahoma to New York (and if you know your geography, you’ll know that’s a long way, even when

30

by Walt Pretorius you don’t have a bunch of nasty aliens shooting at you.) The game will feature a whole lot of upgradable weapons, including the return of a few favourites, managed by a weapon wheel, just like before. While we’re certainly expecting improvements to all technical aspects of the title, the new AI looks to be really exciting. Using what they call “cinematic traversal technology”, AI enemies will now be able to travel across any kind of environment and obstacles to reach the player; no more hiding. This will certainly up the game’s already tense atmosphere by quite a few notches. In addition, the multiplayer aspect of the game will make use of a progression based system, allowing players to take part in a global resistance online, featuring pockets of action around the world. Additionally, two player co-op (online and local) will add to the thrill of this third title in the series. Fans shouldn’t have to wait too long to take the fight back to the Chimera. Resistance 3 is slated – at the moment – for an early September release. g

gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011


AT A GLANCE: Developer: Insomniac Publisher: SCEE Distributor: Ster Kinekor gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011

Sep 2011 Platforms

The third Resistance title will see the player undertake an epic journey to take on the invading Chimera forces.

PC X360 PS3 Wii PSP DS 3DS

31


X-Men: Destiny

Power! Power!

by Walt Pretorius

O

ne of the sadder aspects of super-hero games is that they dictate a hell of a lot to the player. Sure, when you’re making use of existing characters, you have to stay within the paradigm that is the character. But some of us would like the freedom to have more control and choices over the characters we use. Another sad aspect stems from the fact that these games are often released in conjunction with films, and therefore have a rushed feel to them, delivering a less than satisfactory gaming experience. X-Men: Destiny looks to combat both of these issues.

It’s not tied into any film (although it does appear to be set after the death of Charles Xavier in the third movie. The characters also look like their comic-book counterparts, rather than the slicker silver screen personas. And the player, while not able to create original characters, will be able to shape the destiny – and powers – of three new characters created for the game. How much control we’ll have over the powers remains to be seen, but it looks like there will be a fair bit of mixing and matching going on, which will be a refreshing change. We’ll have to wait until the latter part of the year to find out for sure. g

AT A GLANCE: Developer: Silicon Knights Publisher: Activision Distributor: Megarom

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Q3 2011 Platforms

How cool this game will be depends almost directly on how much control the player will be given over their character.

PC X360 PS3 Wii PSP DS 3DS

gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011


c om p eti t io n • c omp eti ti o n • com pe t ition • com pe tit ion • compe t it ion

PROTECT & SERVE!

WIN

A copy of Call of Juarez: The Cartel Courtesy of Megarom and Ubisoft TO ENTER: Send an email to competitions@gamecca.co.za. Tell us the name of one of the characters in this game. Tell us whether you would prefer Xbox 360 or PS3 Insert ‘COJ competition’ in the mail’s subject line. Subscribe to www.gamecca.co.za Become a fan on Gamecca’s Facebook Page Competition closes 31 August 2011. Gamecca subscribers only. South African residents only. Prizes may not be exchanged for cash. Games may be ‘white label’ products. Hampers may not include a copy of the game. Competition closed to employees (& employee’s family) of 1337 Media CC, Megarom and Ubisoft. The judges’ decision is final.


The Darkness 2

Beware The Brotherhood Hello darkness my old friend…

by Alexia Pestana

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he Darkness 2 takes place two years later in the life of Jackie Estacado, the current wielder of the Darkness who has used his powers to become Don of the Franchetti crime family, and for The Darkness 2 his personality and characteristics have been said to be more ‘well rounded’. Jackie has been able to shake the thoughts of his dead girlfriend Jenny Romano since he contained his supernatural powers but now the Darkness wants out. A sudden unprovoked attack on Jackie’s life heralds the start of a full scale mob war, which has clearly been orchestrated by some outside force. The botched attempt opens the door for the Darkness to re-emerge, sending Jackie on a mission to discover the mystery of the attack and motivations of the Darkness himself.

The bad guy here is Viktor, the head of a mysterious organisation known as The Brotherhood – an ancient order formed hundreds of years ago for the sole purpose of destroying and/or controlling the Darkness, once and for all. Digital Extremes has spent a considerable amount of time honing the way Jackie’s powers work with his ability to wield handguns. To that end, one of the biggest tweaks to the game is the upgraded ability to ‘quad-wield’, which is when Jackie is dual wielding guns and using his Darkness powers at the same time. The Darkness 2 is shaping up to be an immersive narrative-driven game with its graphic novel style character designs and textures proving that it can be considered a lot more than merely standard. g

AT A GLANCE: Developer: Digital Extremes Publisher: 2K Games Distributor: Megarom

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Feb 2011 Platforms

Jackie is on a journey to hell and worse. Unravel the mystery behind the attacks with new welcome upgrades.

PC X360 PS3 Wii PSP DS 3DS

gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011


F1 2011

In Pole Position Live the life

by Dylan Bouch

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ace day will be any day or time you turn the console on. Gamers will “be the driver, live the life and go complete” on and off the track and be more involved than ever before. F1 2011 will have all the official teams, circuits and drivers. With the available screen shots the graphics seem to have been kept up to standard. This title will introduce the safety car, which a gamer could get stuck behind after an accident on the track. The safety car won’t be the only new feature for the hard core gamers; in addition to mechanical failures which could happen at any moment, damaged has also been revamped

and will be a big part of the game and your performance. But this is all up to the gamer and how he drives the car. This year’s title will be more like a simulation racer than an arcade game. “Be the driver, live the life and go complete.” This concept will have the gamer in a story mode, almost like a manager mode in other sporting games. You will have a backstage pass to the F1 driver life, before and after race paddocks (which were also in F1 2010 and Dirt 2). Here you can manage your whole career, chill in your tour bus or help the mechanics fine tune your vehicle for the next race day. g

AT A GLANCE: Developer: Codemasters Publisher: Codemasters Distributor: Megarom gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011

Sep 2011 Platforms

F1 2011 will suit the hard core gamer more but looks be great fun all round.

PC X360 PS3 Wii PSP DS 3DS

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Ace Combat: Assault Horizon

Ace in the Hole Kick the tires and light the fires

by Dion Scotten

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ce Combat: Assault Horizon probably has the attention of every flight combat junky out there already. The developers, Project Aces, promise a closer than usual dogfight experience and want players to be immersed in the action of battle rather than just linking dots on a targeting system. Set in the not too distant future, the plot involves the battle for control of a new super weapon named ‘trinity’. The player is the leader of the Warwolf squadron who run air missions for the 108th Task Force. Enemy insurgents also have plans for the weapon and have acquired the services of the mercenary Russian ‘Shark’ Colonel Andrei Markov. Bad guy showdown imminent.

Helicopter, bomber and support gunner missions will be available in addition to the typical fighter jet missions. The setting of each mission will range across the globe as the story unfolds from Miami to Africa to Russia. The maps themselves promise to be as realistic as possible, with the developers using actual satellite imaging as a guide. One of the most interesting features has to be the multiplayer missions featuring a ‘capital conquest’ mode involving up to 8v8 fighter combat. Players will get to choose the type of aircraft they want to use and, of course, each will have their own strengths and weaknesses. The real test of a pilot is in the air and against real opponents so flight combat fanatics shouldn’t miss out on this one. g

AT A GLANCE: Developer: Project Aces Publisher: Namco Bandai Distributor: Megarom

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Oct 2011 Platforms

Up close and personal dogfighting action, including 8v8 multiplayer combat mayhem.

PC X360 PS3 Wii PSP DS 3DS

gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011


Dark Souls

Take That! Tougher? You bet!

by Walt Pretorius

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id you play Demons’ Souls? Remember how unreasonably freakin’ difficult it was? Well, it seems like developers From Software are taking a “you ain’t seen nothin’ yet” approach with its sequel, Dark Souls. It looks, for all intents and purposes, to be an even tougher proposition than the first, which may (or may not) be a good thing. Set in a dark and gloomy fantasy world, Dark Souls will offer a seamless experience, with very little loading and few discernable “levels”. Freedom, in other words… or perhaps a case of giving players enough rope. But the idea seems very fun, and the inclusion of a simple new aspect to the game will make it far more bearable than the grind

we had to face, constantly restarting levels in the previous title. This aspect is the Beacon Fire, which will serve as a recovery point (to restore health) a restart point (for when your character dies, which they will) and a sharing point (to enable players to share experiences online.) The developers aren’t saying whether there will be many Beacon Fire points, or just a few. However, if handled correctly, this new feature could raise the accessibility of this complex and challenging title to the realms where it no longer is a very niche game. We’ll find out around October, when the game is currently set for release. g

AT A GLANCE: Developer: From Software Publisher: Namco Bandai Distributor: Megarom gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011

Oct 2011 Platforms

It will probably be harder than the first title, but may just be a little more forgiving at the same time.

PC X360 PS3 Wii PSP DS 3DS

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Tropico 4

Corruption A national sport in Tropico

by Walt Pretorius

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fter Tropico 2, the franchise all but disappeared… and then we get two new games in relatively quick succession. Tropico 4 will be hitting shelves late this month (in theory) and brings with it more of the same, as well as a few more things to get done. In other words, the player will once again step into the role of El Presidente, tyrant of the banana republic Tropico, and will be able to pass dodgy laws and corrupt policies in an effort to stay in power for as long as possible while stuffing his personal coffers. In addition, he will have more super-powers to negotiate with, new disasters to deal with, ministers that

he can appoint to further his goals and 20 new missions across 10 original maps. Oh, yes, and did we forget to mention that the game will be available on Xbox 360 as well, dragging the franchise onto consoles for the first time? That may well be a good thing, but time will tell, in the end. The PC version will also feature Twitter and Facebook integration, so that you can display your dastardly ways to all your friends. More Tropico? We’re sure that management fans are saying “yes, please”… even if just due to the fact that we seem to be in a bit of a slump in that genre these days. g

AT A GLANCE: Developer: Haemimont Publisher: Kalypso Distributor: Nu Metro

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Aug 2011 Platforms

More dodgy politics for management fans, this time on Xbox 360 as well.

PC X360 PS3 Wii PSP DS 3DS

gamecca preview • issue 26 • August 2011


In ICO, released in 2001, you assume the role of ICO, a courageous young boy born with horns who has been delivered to a mysterious castle to be sacrificed so that, according to legend, the community will be saved. Attempt to escape the grounds and save a princess through a variety of mazes, brainteasers, and other puzzles. In Shadow of the Colossus, players take the role Releasing: of a young man seeking the truth of an ancient tale September 2011 of power hidden in a mystical land. Shadow of the Colossus is a majestic journey through ancient lands to seek out and destroy gigantic mythical beasts.

High atop his penthouse office, a mysterious ringleader named Calypso lords over the contest of vehicle combat known as Twisted Metal. He returns again to host the ultimate contest of skill and destruction. Contestants have been chosen to compete and, should they emerge victorious, win whatever prize their heart desires. Twisted Metal, the longest running franchise in PlayStation history, is now back, exclusively on the PS3 system. With four factions battling for control, players step into the combat boots of a twisted disciple in a high octane, highly destructible world.

Releasing: Unknown

Fortune hunter Nathan Drake is catapulted headlong into an adventure that takes him on a daring trek into the heart of the Arabian Desert in a search for the fabled “Atlantis of the Sands.” This journey pits him and his mentor Victor Sullivan against the occult treachery of a shadowy clandestine organization and its ruthless leader. When the terrible secrets of this lost city are unearthed, Drake’s quest descends into a desperate bid for survival that strains the limits of his endurance and forces him to confront his deepest fears.

Releasing: November 2011

In Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One, we find our heroes in the midst of a dilemma of intergalactic proportions when Dr. Nefarious’ latest evil plan goes awry leaving Ratchet, Clank, Qwark and Nefarious himself caught in the snare of a powerful and mysterious machine. Begrudgingly, the Galaxy’s biggest do-gooders and its most sinister criminal must work together to discover a means of escape in this action-packed installment of the Ratchet & Clank series.

Releasing: October 2011


The Empire of Tamriel is on the edge. The High King of Skyrim has been murdered. Alliances form as claims to the throne are made. In the midst of this conflict, a far more dangerous, ancient evil is awakened. Dragons, long lost to the passages of the Elder Scrolls, have returned to Tamriel. The future of Skyrim, even the Empire itself, hangs in the balance as they wait for the prophesized Dragonborn to come; a hero born with the power of The Voice, and the only one who can stand amongst the dragons.

Releasing: November 2011

Rage is a groundbreaking first-person shooter set in the not-too-distant future after an asteroid impacts Earth, leaving a ravaged world behind. You emerge into this vast wasteland to discover humanity working to rebuild itself against such forces as raider gangs, mutants, and the Authority -- an oppressive government regime that has a special interest in you in particular. Featuring intense first-person action, vehicle combat, an expansive world and jawdropping graphics powered by id’s revolutionary idTech 5 technology, Rage continues the legacy of design studio Id Software in delivering an experience like no other.

Releasing: October 2011

The biohazard threat has not ended: Just when it seemed that the menace of Resident Evil had been destroyed, along comes a new terror to send shivers down player’s spines. Chris Redfield, returning Resident Evil hero, has followed the path of the evil literally around the globe. After joining a new organization, Chris heads to Africa where the latest bioterrorism threat is literally transforming the people and animals of the city into mindless, maddened creatures. He is joined by a new partner, Sheva Alomar, who lends her strength, intelligence and sharp-shooting skills to the mission.

Releasing: Unknown

Dead Rising 2: Off The Record, sees Wilamette survivor and hero of Dead Rising, photojournalist Frank West, take centre stage as players experience a very different interpretation of events in this, a reimagining of the Fortune City outbreak. This alternate storyline means an all new Dead Rising 2 experience; with Frank facing new missions, new enemies, new combo-weapons with which to defeat them plus a brand new Fortune City attraction to explore.

Releasing: October 2011


Motion Commotion PS Zealot

by Suvesh Arumugam

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he talk that headlines all the major gaming conferences and exhibitions for the last three years has been motion controlled gaming. It’s generally accepted that Nintendo’s Wii is still the leading console of its generation, though gaming sales have increased rapidly all round since its arrival. Since the Wii was first introduced in 2006, every console developer, including Nintendo, has spent billions of dollars developing motion products, but also trying to forecast what the next leap in gaming technology will be. Though the technology has moved from infrared to Bluetooth to Kinect, Wii changed the frontier of gaming by its concept, not its design. While the Wii U definitely looks great, it improved on existing ideas. The PSP was already not far from achieving the same level of

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integration with the console as the new Wii remote. Clearly one of the big three must make the next leap in gaming evolution, but nothing so far has revealed anything of the like. Having finally got a holiday, I got to play quite a few more games than usual, including a few Move titles. These included a few shooting, fighting and various party games. I had previously played mostly games like Start the Party and Sports Champion, and now I really got a taste of the variety of games the Move offers. I started out with a couple of shooters, Killzone 3 and Time Crisis: Razing Storm. Firstly, neither of these games

is worth playing on Move unless you have a gun. I got to try the Logic 3 Move Machine Gun, which makes navigation reasonably bearable. It may be an “old dog, new tricks” thing, but I’m pretty sure that I’m always gonna to set a higher score on the six-axis than on the Move. Time Crisis spares you the navigation ordeal in the arcade version, but then you have no control (including not being able to make the trademark duck behind objects). The G3con gun gives you options, but then its wires and cables and eventually “whose idea was this anyway?” The basic problem is - your gun is not your head! The way we move our heads and line of sight just doesn’t translate. The Fight looked more promising, but after mastering Fight Night Champion, I quickly realised the biggest flaw in the game, you can’t move your head! Now although there is a head-tracking calibration, it’s one of those things that only work at the stroke of midnight, in Outer Mongolia, and only if a purple cat sings “Superstitious” outside your window! Otherwise, it doesn’t work! Even though other consoles use different approaches, this is the same problem, and one you figure would come up in testing. But I think the battle for consumers is so hot, that any product on the market is better than nothing. So, to the product developers and CEO’s and janitor’s with ambition… give us a way to move our freakin’ heads. Maybe a headset with an accelerometer somewhere. That should be enough to tide us over until one of you invents the next wheel (or Wii). g

gamecca column • issue 26 • August 2011


The ultimate aim in the ongoing PES series is to match what people see when they go to a match or watch a big game on TV with what they experience on their console. To this end, PES 2012 continues KONAMI’s determination to work with fans of both the PES series and football in general, to create a truly realistic, immersive and utterly playable take on the modern game.

Saints Row®: The Third™ gives you control of the Saints at the height of their power, and you live the life to show for it. Now Steelport is ripe for the taking, and it’s up to you to make the city your own. Mold the skyline based on your choices, outfit your crew in classy gangster gear or furry costumes, and make life-or-death decisions that will change Steelport, and the Saints, forever. This is now your city. These are now your rules. Strap it on.

WWE® ’12 will celebrate the rebirth of the iconic and authentic simulation franchise through a bigger game, badder presentation and better gameplay than ever before, delivering long-awaited critical improvements to the core gameplay experience, the most creative and extensive feature set to date and a visceral, edgy and polished presentation. Players will become part of WWE through extensive gameplay advancements, including the brand new Breaking Point submission system, new Attributes and control layout as well as significant improvements to other key gameplay systems.

WRC 2011, the official video game of the 2011 FIA World Rally Championship, features all: drivers, teams and rallies of the 2011 WRC calendar. WRC 2011 boasts significantly more content than its predecessor with 90 stages, 15 different locations, 25 different terrain/ weather conditions and 9 car categories. In addition to exciting and trying new Game Modes, such as: a 16-player online mode, a completely revamped Career Mode and many other improvements in terms of contents, game play features and visual effects to deliver the most realistic off-road racer ever seen.


Summer in Winter Xbox Beat

by Bryan Banfield

X

box Live - Summer of Arcade is here again. For those of you who are not familiar with this wonder time of the year, allow me to explain. Xbox Live Arcade has become a massive success on the Xbox platform, with a number of astounding developed independent titles making this service a massive selling point for Xbox 360 platform. Around this time of year the Xbox team select five hot new Xbox Live Arcade games and release them in one week intervals. This year we are almost in the middle on our Summer of Arcade with two titles already out! Let’s take a look at what the Xbox team have lined up for us this year. Bastion (Released on the 20th of July 2011 - 1200 Microsoft Points) Bastion has you play as a character named The Kid. You find yourself in a world that is very literally falling down around you. You challenge is to

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learn as much about the secrets of the calamity and assist in rebuilding this magical world. From Dust (Released on the 27th of July 2011 - 1200 Microsoft Points) Fans of the PC based Black and White series, this one if for you! You take on the role of assisting a small tribe in their quest to discover and learn the secrets of their ancestors’ powers and shape a new life. Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet (To be released in the 3rd of August 2011 -1200 Microsoft Points) This 2-D action-adventure game will have you in an out of various unique environments as you discover some rather bizarre creatures and slowly make your way to the center of a strange planet known as Shadow Planet. Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet features exciting puzzle solving and will have you

upgrading your ship with various alien technologies as you fight to save your home-world. Fruit Ninja Kinect (To be released on the 10th of August 2011 - 1200 Microsoft Points) Fancy your arms as blades? Always wanted to be a ninja? Now you can! Fruit Ninja will be coming to Xbox Live Arcade. Your time has come and fresh produce is the only thing standing in your way. Slice and dice your way to victory with a number of fun and exciting multiplayer modes that can turn any quiet family night into a sticky mess! Toy Soldiers: Cold War ( To be released on the 17th of August 2011 -1200 Microsoft Points) When ‘80s-era action toys come to life the Cold War begins. This is a very interesting take on a tower defence style of game. Play as a host of different action toys. Battle waves of attackers as players use the troops they have access to. This first instalment of Toy Soldiers was amazing addictive. Toy Soldiers: Cold War is set to deliver at the same pace. So there we have it. The five titles that make up this year’s Summer of Arcade. As an added bonus Microsoft have added in something extra for us. Its works as follows: when you purchase all the Summer of Arcade titles during the Summer of Arcade promotion, Microsoft will send you a promotional code to be redeemed for their hotly anticipated Crimson Alliance. Not only will players receive this title for free but players will also receive all three of the playable characters for free, too. g

gamecca column • issue 26 • August 2011


Happy Birthday Zelda! House of Mario

by Brian Murdoch

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his year marks Zelda’s 25th birthday and this month is as middle as we could get it between the two big (re)released Zelda titles: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time remake for the Nintendo 3DS and The Legend of Zelda: Skyword Sword, to come out on the Wii soon. So let’s talk Zelda! The “Legend of Zelda” was not only first Zelda, but is also one of the first open-world games. It was released for the NES in 1986. It only had a few lines of text to guide but it presented brave new possibilities in videogames. The immediate sequel “Zelda II: Adventure of Link” was released as a side-scrolling action game rather than an open-world adventure. It had a surprisingly complex combat system and quite a lot of game to it. “A Link to The Past” was a prequel to the first two titles and this topdown 2D adventure split Hyrule with portals to see the parallel good and evil side of the land. “Link’s Awakening” came out on the Game Boy in 1993 and was the first Zelda game to have a real story. It was the true influence for Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask. Ocarina of Time came on in 1998 and it immediately sold out. The Zelda games continued on and not many people were able to piece together the story into one whole; after a while because it became so entangled. I don’t worry because there does not seem to be any point at this late stage. The Zelda games are to be played as if they are not a part of one bigger story because they are big enough on their own. There are some secrets in the game but players tend to make up some

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more that just are not there. Let’s go through some of these and clear it up. The following are not true: The fact that you can obtain the Triforce as a secret item. There were Beta screens that showed Link holding it, but there is no game that Link, or whatever name you give your character, can obtain it. There is a great fabricated How-toGuide on the internet. Enter “Zelda” to unlock a secret second quest. There were a few liars with this one claiming that it would enable content and give the game extra length… they were wrong. All this would do is really is confuse the text story and you would not know which Zelda they were talking about. Unfreezing Zora’s Domain. This is a player’s overactive imagination making up different complicated ways to unfreeze it and

wander its secret caves for untold rewards. Golden Equipment (not the standard Green}. There is no golden tunic, cap or any other equipment that can be unlocked or found. The only golden thing was the Ocarina of Time limited edition cartridge when it first released. Almost every game developer has been touched in some way by Zelda games and always in a positive way. I thought that I had played RPG games and was really good at puzzles until Zelda came with her heavy plank and woke me up from that stupor. The Legend of Zelda games need more than just an orchestra entry into E3 but a worldwide standing ovation and I’m sure the players of the games would all stand and clap at the same time if they were asked. It’s been a better gaming world with Zelda for the last 25 years. g

gamecca column • issue 26 • August 2011


wii care

faq@nintendogamer.co.za ...for DS too

You won’t only find reviews, news and great community features at www.nintendogamer.co.za. You will also find extremely informative FAQs all about the Wii & DS platforms, and the games you can play on them. At www.nintedogamer.co.za, we want to make sure that the most accurate information & support is free and easy to find.

www.nintendogamer.co.za


Feature

Blood Ties The perfect little family…

by Walt Pretorius

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gamecca feature • issue 26 • August 2011


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amily is important. But when you have a family like this, it might be better to turn your back on the ties of blood… The original F.EA.R. game was released by the ill-fated Vivendi-Universal in 2005, after development by the near legendary (and also long-gone) team at Sierra. It introduced players to a world where survival horror and first-person shooters collided in a game that was emotionally charged, powerful and often terrifying. As the Point Man of the First Encounter Assault Recon team, the player first entered the world of F.EA.R. in search of Paxton Fettel, a man imbued with numerous supernatural powers. Fettel, leading an army of telepathically controlled soldiers, seized control of Armacham Technology Corporation headquarters, killing everyone inside the mammoth building, and it was up to the F.E.A.R. operatives to apprehend him. During the mission, Point Man was afflicted by visions of a small girl in a red dress. Information uncovered during the mission revealed that the child was named Alma, and that Paxton Fettel was her son. It was further uncovered that Fettel was trained to be a telepathic military commander under Project Origin. Alma, as a powerful psychic, formed the backbone of Project Origin. It also became plain that Alma had another child. As the story progressed, it became clear that Alma was not a willing participant in Project Origin, and that she was controlling Fettel as a means of revenge on those that harmed her. Fettel and Point Man were almost on the same mission – seeking the Project Origin facility to find Alma. When Point Man and Fettel finally met, the truth was revealed: Point Man was Alma’s other child, and Fettel’s older brother. This knowledge enabled Point Man to put a bullet through Fettel’s head – but Alma’s revenge was far from complete. The head of Project Origin, Harlan Wade, (and also Alma’s father) freed her during a moment of angsty guilt. Point Man raced to destroy the Project Origin facility, after which he was rescued by a helicopter. But a last-

gamecca feature • issue 26 • August 2011

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Feature

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gamecca feature • issue 26 • August 2011


second appearance by Alma in the chopper showed that her revenge was far from over. Although there were a number of releases to support the original game, Vivendi-Universal’s woes seemed to indicate that a full sequel was unlikely. But the franchise was acquired by Warner Brothers, and F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin hit shelves in early 2009. Starting out around 30 minutes before the end of the original game, this title saw the player in the role of Michael Becket, a Delta Force operative sent to take Armacham president Genevieve Aristide into protective custody. After a short fight with an Armacham black ops team, Becket was told by Aristide that he and his team were the only way to stop Alma… and, at that point, Point Man succeeded in destroying the Project Origin facility. When he recovered, Becket found himself being experimented on by a team of doctors under Aristide’s control. During his bid for freedom, he was assaulted several times by Alma, who wanted to absorb him due to the psychic signal he now gave off. He found an Armacham scientist who explained that a psychic amplifier on Still Island would enable Becket to destroy Alma once and for all. Once there, however, he was once again tricked by Aristide, and is locked up in the amplifier with Alma. There, she sexually assaulted him, and fell pregnant with his child. F.E.A.R. 3, reviewed on page 58 of this issue, is the second title in the franchise published by Warner Brothers. It sees the return of Point Man as he, accompanied by the ghost of Paxton Fettel, races to find Alma as she prepares to give birth. The combination of first-person shooter and survival horror, combined with excellent atmosphere, has proven itself time and again in the F.E.A.R. series. Whether we will see another release is not certain, but something else is: the teams behind these games have proven that engaging game play, coupled with good stories and excellent dynamics, are not just things that gamers need to dream about. g gamecca feature • issue 26 • August 2011

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Reviews Highlights 42 Call of Juarez: The Cartel Bad cops... 46 F.E.A.R. 3 Family matters 52 Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D Itty-bity zombies... 56 The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D Rerelease awesomeness

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hey’re starting to appear, slowly... like furtive woodland creatures, the big name titles that will define this year are peaking out from under logs and behind bushes... just before they leap on us and savage uf with their gaming awesomeness! But, for now, we have to bide our time. There are a few big names drifting around... but soon, soon, my friends... All kinds of gaming is gonna break loose! g

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gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011


THE BIGGEST LAN IN THE SOUTH OF JOBURG

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Call of Juarez: the Cartel

Bad Cop, Bad Cop The modern Wild West

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by Walt Pretorius

g agma emceccac ar ervei ve w i e w• i•s si suseu e1 72 6• N • oAvue gmubset r 22001110


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few years ago, when the original Call of Juarez made its way to store shelves, it presented the player with something out of the ordinary; a shooter set in the Wild West. And even though we have seen a few of these titles in the interim, they’re still rare, so when the sequel to the original Call of Juarez, Bound in Blood, popped up, it was just as exciting. The third game attempts to carry the lawless feel of these previous two titles but things are rather different in Call of Juarez: the Cartel. The biggest difference comes from that very idea that the games move through history… it’s set in modern times. Going from the early West to the American Civil War wasn’t too much of a jump through history (it was a move backwards, in fact), but setting the game in modern day Los Angeles is perhaps too much of a step ahead. There were a good many decades between then and now that could have been covered by the game. But modern it is. This, realistically, isn’t a big problem (other than speeding through the McCall family history). In fact, many were rather excited at the prospect of the game being set in the modern day, a time resplendent with fully automatic weapons and street gangs to aim them at. The developers, Techland, even managed to keep a bit of a lawless Wild West feel in the title, thanks to the sound track, as well as some of the game’s settings (including ghost towns and vast desert areas). In addition to the excitement that was created by the modernising of the franchise, the core idea of the game also caused a lot of excitement. The Cartel tells the tale of three law-enforcement types, thrown together to form a special task force charged with investigating a powerful Mexican drug cartel. Each of

gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011

the characters is playable, either in single player, or in the co-op campaign. There’s Eddie Guerra, a street smart Latino DEA agent. There’s Kim Evans, a sassy African-American FBI agent. And then there’s Ben McCall, a grizzled LAPD detective (and descendant of the characters of the previous games) who quotes expletive-ridden Bible passages while he guns down his foes. Each of these characters has different strengths and weaknesses; Evans acts best in long-range, while Guerra is a mid-range fighter and McCall gets up-close and personal. Even better, each character has their own story and agenda. Each will be tasked with little ‘sub-missions’ that need to be completed during main missions, while the other two characters aren’t looking. Each has a slightly different story in the game, meaning slightly different endings to the single player campaign, depending on which character is used. That, of course, would mean that the player would want to play the game through three times… something which might not be the case. See, in converting the whole thing to a modern day shooter, Techland seems to have lost the plot a bit. Their puzzling performance with Nail’d aside, it seems that the company was either in a rush to get the latest Call of Juarez out, or they just weren’t sure where to go with it from the very start. The good ideas that were brought into the game feel somewhat squandered on the final product. The game dynamic has something going for it; it is fun to play. The guns are fun, and there is a lot of them to use. And there are tons of AI enemies, which are generally fairly smart, to take out. But that really is all that the game is about. Aside from a few bits of lacklustre driving, the player is going to be stuck in a

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really repetitive loop. The scenery may change, but the action doesn’t. Even the slowed time mode gets old rather quickly. While it may seem that the three player co-op, complete with its sneaking around to do things behind the other players’ backs, may improve the situation, it doesn’t really. The action is still repetitive. In fact, with the AI for the player’s partners being fairly smart, it’s likely that people may find the title more enjoyable in single player modes… the AI is good at taking out enemies, plays to the character’s strengths, and doesn’t get taken out. Ever. It also plays tactically, allowing the player to get into guided flanking positions… something that will only happen in co-op if you’ve got a set of decent partners. The co-op is fun, sure, but it’s not a better experience. While the game could have been saved by the story and interesting characters, Techland failed to capitalise on these, too. The story is fairly shallow, and rather predictable. And the characters… well, they’re foul mouthed, unlikeable stereotypes that leave the player with very little to engage with. The voice acting is hammed up, and the dialogue is often laughably ‘cool’, with tons of swearing and inappropriate slang thrown in. While the AI can help the player with audio prompts, indicating where the enemies are and when to sprint to the next bit of cover, these are sometimes miss-timed. On the graphics side, The Cartel is also a little disappointing. It feels dated, with textures that could have been better, and some models that lack important detail. The control side of things isn’t too bad, with a decent set of preset controller layouts. The controls are fairly responsive and won’t let the player down, although the characters may inexplicable get hooked up on geometry every now and then, and the AI characters will, at times, do their best to get in the player’s way. Call of Juarez: the Cartel could have been a much better game, when all is said and done. The co-op ideas behind the title are very good (although the general multiplayer doesn’t even bear mentioning.) The three stories woven into one is also a nice idea, but should have been explored further. The action is intense and often fun, but needs some variation. However, it’s not what one would consider a complete waste of time, either. While it is not a ‘must-play’ game, it does offer a decent amount of action, an often challenging set of AI enemies, and lots of guns to play with. It will require a lot of patience and forgiveness from the player, though. It is not a step forward for the franchise… in fact, it might even be a bit of a step in the wrong direction. g

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gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011


It offers some fun, but The Cartel is certainly not of the calibre that one would expect from a modern FPS title. Developer: Techland Publisher: Ubisoft Distributor: Megarom

Parental Advisory Violence Language Sex Drug Use Prejudice

18+ gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011

Accessibility Hard-Core Medium Casual

X360 Platforms

AT A GLANCE:

PC X360 Kinect

PS3 Move

Wii PSP DS 3DS

Score

60 57


F.E.A.R 3

Family Matters Alma’s at it again…

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he third instalment of the F.E.A.R franchise, which is alternately called F.3.A.R or F.E.A.R 3, has been expected for some time, and provides a welcome approach to first-person shooters. It’s more of a sequel to the original game than the second, with the player reprising their role as the genetically enhanced supersoldier known, tritely, as Point Man. The story is simple enough – Point Man needs to break out of prison and stop his mother, Alma, from giving birth. Accompanied by the apparition of his brother Paxton Fettel – who he supplied with a bullet to the brain at the end of the first game – Point Man has to blast his way through hordes of Armacham troops (working for the same company that ‘created’ him in the first place) to prevent Alma from delivering a potentially

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by Walt Pretorius horrific abomination. Fettel has other ideas, though… Incidentally, the kid that Alma is carrying was fathered by the protagonist of the second game in the franchise. Although the name implies a tense survival-horror blended with a first person shooter, one of F.E.A.R 3’s shortcomings is that it isn’t really very scary. There are more than a few tense moments and a handful of well times frights, but playing as Point Man – an extreme badass in many ways – helps the player feel somewhat secure in the knowledge that they are going to make it. Not that the game is easy, even at the easiest difficulty settings. F.E.A.R 3 is out to challenge the player, and it does so beautifully. See, F.E.A.R 3 is a more than decent shooter. While it may not be top-of-the-line, it certainly does a lot that

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will please shooter fans. It makes use of an extremely effective cover system, which is almost crucial to the game dynamic, without making it the only way to play. Occasionally the player will be able to run-and-gun as well. And with the cover-system comes an enemy AI clever enough to know how to flank the player and flush them from the cover. Add to that the fact that the cover (some of it, at least) can be destroyed and the battles get very intense at times. In fact, the game should probably have been called T.E.N.S.I.O.N, rather than F.E.A.R, because that’s what the player is going to feel a lot of – not the cold clammy terror one would expect, but rather a sweaty-palmed, edge-of-the-seat tension that gets the adrenaline going. A lot of this is thanks to the atmosphere that the developers

gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011

built into the title. It’s almost pitch perfect, with varied, atmospheric environments complemented by very wellproduced sound effects and music. This, combined with a decent shooter dynamic, makes for an enjoyable experience. What makes it addictive is something else entirely. See, progress within the game – in other words, increasing your character’s abilities, comes not from a standard experience point system, but rather from a collection of achievements. So, for example, killing a certain amount of enemies with a specific weapon will get you a bunch of points, or spending a certain amount of time behind cover will earn you a similar reward. These point awards add up towards increasing the player’s level. Which in turn unlocks more health, longer time-slowing periods and

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similar bonuses. The player can check their progress in these rewards at any time, and getting better scores will keep you coming back for more. In addition, the game offers a fair amount of freedom, considering that it is pretty much a linear experience. In areas that are off the beaten track, the player will find collectable items that further increase their point tallies. While the above-mentioned linearity does hamper the game, the levels are cleverly designed, and players will be able to take a number of approaches to completing them. The developers were generous enough to provide the tools to do so – so a player can pick between a stealthy sniper approach or a guns-blazing one, for example. Speaking of guns, F.E.A.R 3 doesn’t offer too many – in

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fact, it features just enough, allowing the player to use the kind of weapon that suits their overall approach, rather than being overwhelmed by statistics and options. There are grenades in the game too, but for the most part the physics in using them are just a little wonky… unless the player scores a direct hit, hand-held explosive projectiles are a bit useless. Once the player has completed a level in the campaign with Point Man, they can go and replay it with the other brother, Fettel. This apparition doesn’t use guns, but rather lays waste to enemies using psychic powers and possession. The game can also be played co-operatively, with one player controlling each of the brothers. While good team work in this mode makes for an awesome experience

gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011


dynamic is extremely addictive… it was played through multiple times for this review. All achievements are kept from one play-through to the next, and carry over from single player to multiplayer games, and vice versa. So while F.E.A.R 3 might not be the finest shooter around, it certainly is up there, delivering an experience that is far more than the sum of its parts. It might not be overly terrifying, but it does get the player right to the edge of their seat, offering moments of extreme tension along with awesome satisfaction when getting through tough situations. If you’re looking for a shooter that offers something a bit different, as well as more than decent longevity and an overall solid approach, F.E.A.R 3 is a reliable, fun option. g

AT A GLANCE: It might not be revolutionary, but F.E.A.R 3offers enough freshness and good design ideas to be well worth playng. Developer: Day 1 Studios Publisher: Warner Bros Distributor: Nu Metro

Parental Advisory Violence Language Sex Drug Use Prejudice

18+ gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011

Accessibility Hard-Core Medium Casual

PS3 Platforms

(which is still slightly competitive, given the brothers’ different motives) the game really shines as a single player experience, where the isolation enhances the atmosphere. That is until you turn to the game’s four multiplayer modes. These are excellent, and offer quite a bit of originality to the player. The approach taken by the developers to these modes keeps them fresh and addictive, with scenarios ranging from the very familiar defending of a location through to fighting off enemies while running away from a toxic cloud. While the campaign is a bit on the short side, F.E.A.R 3 offers the player a lot to do. The graphics are a little dated here and there, but the overall presentation – including voice acting and atmosphere – is good. And the achievement-based game

PC X360 Kinect

PS3 Move

Wii PSP DS 3DS

Score

86 61


Resident Evil:The Mercenaries 3D

Zombie-Shoot

Just ‘cause they’re smaller doesn’t mean they’re nicer… by Brian Murdoch

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his is the most unexpected Resident Evil title ever. There will be a few people that pick up this title expecting one thing and getting something maybe just as fun, but very different. This game is based on the mode unlocked in previous games called “Mercenaries Mode”, and involves time trials to kill zombies and score as many points as you can. How can one bonus mode be turned into a whole game? Well, this mode got so much attention in the other games that there were competitions and guides created specifically for it. It has become its own entity, just like DotA. The game is very slow to start. They teach you how to run in the first training season. And after working out how to change to the next stage (yes I did the running stage 3 times because I thought I had done something wrong [so did I – ed]) then the game can continue. It is

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quite funny; running is something you would teach a new comer to gaming and this first time gamer is going, “I’d like my first game to be a survival horror just for that extra bit of challenge.” After its slow start the game turns into quite the challenge. Even when in co-op mode the players need to work together to pass or get high scores, which is a challenge playing online but easier in local sessions. Work your way through levels and hordes of zombies to face some epic boss battles. Each character that is unlocked comes with their own set of weapons and moves, with strengths and weakness. The weapon set can be swapped between players but then the character is lost a little. Close combat is a little challenging to start with but worth it in time. The controls for the 3DS introduce simultaneous moving and shooting for the first time in any Resident Evil game.

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The Mercenaries

AT A GLANCE: A different way of killing zombies but a dead zombie is a dead zombie, right? Developer: Capcom Publisher: Capcom Distributor: Core Group

Parental Advisory Violence Language Sex Drug Use Prejudice

18+ gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011

Accessibility Hard-Core Medium Casual

3DS Platforms

It’s not an easy adjustment and there was many a time that I wanted to plug in my Xbox controller and play with two control sticks. Learn to live with it and enjoy zombie killing on the go. The save game in this title has been the cause of a lot of frustration but some of us just really don’t care at all. The save file cannot be erased by any normal or approved method. This means that the reselling potential of the game is reduced because who wants to play a game where everything is already unlocked? (Street Fighter does come to mind) Most players don’t use or need this function so let’s leave that there. Be sure to play the demo of Resident Evil Revelations, the next RE title to come to the 3DS. It’s only around 4 minutes of gameplay but if played the right way will get you very excited for the next title. g

Hunk A member of the Umbrella Special Forces unit, Hunk featured in a hidden mini-game in Resident Evil 2, in which he had to escape from Racoon City. Another appearance in the Mercenaries mode of Resident Evil 4. Jack Krauser The most fitting for the title of mercenary, Jack Krauser is an archery expert armed with a bow. Unfortunately (or fortunately) he has the T-virus coursing through his veins so don’t share his tooth brush. Claire Redfield The Resident Evil 2 protagonist and later Code Veronica brother-hunter. Claire Redfield also appears in the RE films, played by Ali Larter. Chris Redfield The Resident Evil 1 protagonist and later Code Veronica sister-hunter, Chris Redfield only reappeared in The Umbrella Chronicles. He showed up again as one of the main characters in Resident Evil 5, and he’s also responsible for uttering some of gaming’s most infamous one-liners.

PC X360 Kinect

PS3 Move

Wii PSP DS 3DS

Score

82 63


Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2

The End?

Will this be Harry’s last gaming adventure?

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hose that already finished JK Rowling’s series of Harry Potter books in a timeous fashion know what to expect from the movie – more or less, thanks to massive gaps that the film makers saw fit to inject into Harry’s last appearance on the silver screen – and consequently, what to expect from the game. This is because the game manages to stick to the film plot pretty faithfully. Let’s not fool ourselves here… these days, the film carries more weight than the books (sad but true). And those that played the previous Harry Potter game will have an even better idea of what’s coming their way; this new title makes use of a similar third person cover based shooter system. But while the developers of the previous game seemed to get things largely wrong (including the use of motion based controls) this time around the whole idea is a lot better. Not that we’re singing this title’s praises, because we aren’t. We’re just saying that it’s better than before…

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by Alex Scanlon

which may not be saying all that much. The player gets to take to the battlefield in the guise of several characters from the film, including Harry, Hermione, Seamus and Neville. And, as these different characters, they get to do more or less the same thing over and over again; run from one batch of obvious cover to the next, take out a few waves of bad guys when they’re there, and move along. The action is extremely repetitive, even though Bright Light tried to introduce variation in the form of slightly different mechanics in some missions, like giving another character covering fire, or running away from danger while avoiding obstacles. In fact, these mission don’t feel like they’re breaking the pattern at all… they’re just adding to it in slightly varied ways. Instead of weapons, the character gets various spells, each of which could be equated to a weapon in games that have guns. There are rapid fire spells, and big explosive

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combat. They may well forgive the game dynamics and short campaign play time. But they shouldn’t have to – a property like this could have gone a great many places, and a large number of those places would have delivered a better gaming experience than is currently to be had with Harry Potter and the Deathly hallows Part 2. But the game is what it is – crying over lost potential isn’t exactly productive, and one doesn’t expect too much from titles based on movies. That’s a sad fact, really, because these games could be so much better. Whether this will be the last game in the franchise or not is unsure. After all, movie series like the Lord of the Rings are still seeing games released, and it’s doubtful that EA will let go of this lucrative series very quickly. If they do carry on with it, though, here’s hoping that any subsequent titles avoid being rushed out (which really is what all the problems in this particular game come down to.) It would be good to see a great Harry Potter game. g

AT A GLANCE: None of the Harry Potter games have been awesome, and this isn’t the best of them, either. Developer: Bright Light Publisher: Electronic Arts Distributor: EA South Africa

Parental Advisory Violence Language Sex Drug Use Prejudice

12+ gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011

Accessibility Hard-Core Medium Casual

X360 Platforms

spells, and even sniper style spells. These are accessed very easily, thanks to the face buttons, and switching between the various spells quickly will provide the player with a tactical advantage as situations demand it. But even this variation, and the graphically pretty effects that the spells have, don’t do much to elevate the title above the status of ‘rushed-out movie-game’. Another area that offers a bit of variation is the game’s settings. These will be familiar to those that saw the film, and include Gringott’s Bank, Hogsmead village and, of course, Hogwarts. But the variation in settings doesn’t mitigate the repetitive action. Add to all of this the fact that the game is painfully short, and doesn’t offer any real replay value, and its exploitative nature becomes more than obvious. Big movie equals big game sales. And any fan that isn’t a particularly serious gamer will likely enjoy the game for what it is. They will probably look past the stilted animations and repetitive

PC X360 Kinect

PS3 Move

Wii PSP DS 3DS

Score

55 65


18V


The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D

Water Temple Again? Re-release an almost perfect game!

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iecing the Legend of Zelda story order together is left for editors of wikis and those that want a headache, but read the House of Mario column on page 46 for a quick summary of the trail leading to Ocarina of Time. The first Legend of Zelda was not just the landmark of being the first Zelda game but also one of the first openworld games. It rolled on as a platformer in the second version (The Adventure of Link) but returned after that. Zelda is very well known and there are far too few people out there that acknowledge the title for the trend setter that it is. Ocarina of Time came on in late 1998 and immediately sold out; there were no copies available to buy around Christmas time. At this early stage Ocarina of Time made true break-through in open-world 3D gaming that would become a standard in future games that no one

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by Brian Murdoch

could live without. An open world, free to roam, in which players see the horizon and then decide to walk to it – and pretty much can. “Link, that mountain over there is where we need to go, starting running…” Zelda games tend to have these strong morals that give the sense of growing up but only in Ocarina of Time did Zelda grow up for the first time. Players start the game as the little elf boy Link, unaware of the evils of the world outside of the safe Kokiri Forest. After getting trapped in the Temple Of Time and emerging as an adult back to a world now in ruin, the player would then go back to some of the same areas to find the puzzles and challenges changed and different from before. The new control scheme seems a lot better, with items being assigned to easy keys, and the circle pad and even the 3DS gyros helping with aim and looking around. I was in a discussion over screenshots before it came

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Rundown of re-releases Ocarina of Time has been re-released a few times - here is a quick rundown. Master Quest on GameCube in 2003: It came as part of the Zelda Collection Disc for GameCube and was a bonus with a pre-order of Wind Waker. It’s an emulation on the GameCube and looks much better in high resolution. There was some extra content in this version. Wii Virtual Console on Wii in 2007: This was my first attempt at a Zelda game; I was glad to find out it is identical to the original, other than Ganon’s blood being green and the rumble missing. Ocarina of Time 3D on 3DS in 2011: This is the game in question. Planned coincidence that the first 3D Zelda game to be the first remake for the 3DS. There are good strong hints that it’s not going to be the last.

AT A GLANCE: The remake of the near-perfect game comes to the 3DS. Developer: Nintendo Publisher: Nintendo Distributor: Core Group

Parental Advisory Violence Language Sex Drug Use Prejudice

12+ gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011

Accessibility Hard-Core Medium Casual

3DS Platforms

out and fans were expecting and wanting more out of the modelling and redone graphics. Having switched and restarted from the virtual console version to the 3DS, I needed to clean the pieces of my brain left on the wall behind me! The game feels the same, other than the extra help and Boss run mode, but they did not even need to do that to make the game great. The ability to switch to gamer notes and a web browser on the 3DS is priceless when getting stuck in the many puzzles that only Zelda games have to offer players. Don’t expect to pick up your first Zelda game and race through it. The game will require a lot of your time and attention and rightfully deserves it. The title is a long story waiting to be played. I don’t think I’ll go back to the Virtual Console version again… this remake is far superior, and mobile. g

PC X360 Kinect

PS3 Move

Wii PSP DS 3DS

Score

97 69


Transformers: Dark of the Moon

Eclipsed A trilogy in four parts?

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ow that the Transformers movies can be called a trilogy, we can say the same about the video games… no, wait, we can’t. There are now four games, not three, including last year’s War for Cybertron. At the time of its release, War for Cybertron was the best Transformers game made, and, after the release of Dark of the Moon, it retains that title. Sadly, the ingenuity and different ideas that were injected into War for Cybertron have all but disappeared from Dark of the Moon. Is it a coincidence that the better game did not come out at the same time as a major movie release? No. No, it isn’t, because the kind of rushed schedules and silly stuff that go into movie-games weren’t around to plague War for Cybertron. But they’re there in full force for Dark of the Moon. The plot of the game precedes that of the movie (thankfully) and takes the player through numerous battles that lead up to what happens in the film. The

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by Alex Scanlon player will take the part of several Autobot characters as they fight off Decepticons in a number of varied locations and environments. The Autobots themselves are beautifully handled, in terms of graphics, but the Decepticon enemies leave a lot to be desired – they seem to be the same robot-guy, over and over again. In fact, the graphics in general aren’t too bad, but the presentation is let down by poor dialogue and sound effects that just don’t have the punchiness they should. This time around, the player will be able to take on three forms: cool, shiny vehicle; big, bad-ass robot and then something that sits in between the two, called stealth mode. In stealth mode, the character looks like a modified version of their vehicle form, with lots of guns. This mode allows for free movement, and makes the character a considerably smaller target. It also makes the character tougher, and eliminates the need for reloading weapons (like the player will have to do in robot mode.)

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replayed over and over again, because there are lots of relatively cheap deaths in store for the player. The game won’t punish the player too much for that, aside from making them sit through one of the game’s lacklustre cutscenes over and over again. Dark of the Moon is far from being an unplayable mess. In fact, it can be quite fun, particularly in multiplayer games. The problem is that it just doesn’t live up to its predecessor. If War for Cybertron had never been released, this would be the best Transformers game around. Unfortunately, though, it doesn’t live up to the expectations created by the previous game, which is sad. A little more love, a touch more effort and a smidgeon more time would have done Dark of the Moon the world of good, perhaps even elevating it way above the average movie-based game. That isn’t the case, though. g

AT A GLANCE: Sadly, this title does not live up to its predecessor, but still provides some enjoyment. Developer: Developer Publisher: Publisher Distributor: Distributor

Parental Advisory Violence Language Sex Drug Use Prejudice

12+ gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011

Accessibility Hard-Core Medium Casual

X360 Platforms

The end result is that the player will likely spend most of the game’s 5 hour campaign in this mode, only resorting to vehicle or robot modes when they absolutely have to. Excuse me for being a doubting Thomas, but that doesn’t seem very Transformer-like to me. This new form has also changed the balance of online multiplayer, because the same thing is going to happen. Players silly enough to strut their stuff as robots against other humans are going to get taken out by those in stealth mode. One of the sadder aspects is that the more imaginative level design we saw in War for Cybertron has made a run for the border. Dark of the Moon presents the player with levels that are achingly linear and extremely repetitive. The player will, without fail, fight off waves of robot enemies, before taking on either a horde or a boss in a room that will stay locked until the battle is done. And, thanks to sparse cover, these battles will probably need to be

PC X360 Kinect

PS3 Move

Wii PSP DS 3DS

Score

69 71


Ape Escape

Monkey Madness! Ape Escape goes Move!

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n its bid to launch the Move and get ahead in the Motion Wars, Sony have converted several successful titles into Move games, including the long running platform series Ape Escape, from Sony Japan. From the original PlayStation One game to its sequels and spin offs, this is one the best selling game franchises worldwide. Unlike others in the series, Ape Escape Move is more like a first person shooter than a platform game. The story is pretty much the same, as explained in some humorous Pokémon style cut scenes: You are Spike, a young boy, and a high school science experiment gone wrong has drawn millions of monkeys in spaceships to Earth, and into your living room! They are led by an intelligent monkey named Spector, who was once a circus monkey, until a futuristic helmet increased his intelligence (and need for world domination). He and his army are terrorising (or maybe irritating) the known world and you are handed a Move controller (literally)

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by Suvesh Arumugam and your quest is to prevent an impending space invasion by capturing them (and stealing all their bananas, of course) begins. If you think the premise is simple, that’s because it is. There really isn’t much story, and after a brief explanation, you’re thrown into the monkey house. The game gives you eight story levels, each in arcade style location like Haunted House or Mystery Cave, as well as a host of minigames for multiplayer. Stray monkeys have to be caught in a net by waving the Move controller. The control can be switched to a slingshot, which can be used to destroy objects, annoy the monkeys and (you guessed it) to steal their bananas for power-ups! It can also change into a fan to bat away rogue bananas and bombs. A nice feature is that the controller responds to the motion; press trigger to fire slingshot, fan from side to side to activate the fan, or swing the net around to catch monkeys. Players are moved automatically from position to position, and all that

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The game also has a few mini-games, which are also fun for multiplayer. They’re pretty much the same as the story, in terms of being fairly easy for anyone to play, with easy tasks to accomplish. The game is way too simple to interest any serious gamer, and does not have the novelty or party factor to have it worth lying around, unless you’re a die-hard fan of the series. However it is a lot of fun for young kids, who will find the controls easy to learn, and the characters engaging and cute; and Ape Escape is going to shower them with praise, big music celebrations and bonuses at each turn. There is just enough challenge for a 12 year old to want a few tries on the hard stages. There’s zero educational value though, unless monkeys do originate from space and are moments away from developing their world domination weapon – the atomic banana! g

AT A GLANCE: The world goes bananas! This Move edition of the popular franchise is great for youngsters. Developer: SCEJ Publisher: SCEE Distributor: Ster Kinekor

Parental Advisory Violence Language Sex Drug Use Prejudice

A gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011

Accessibility Hard-Core Medium Casual

PS3 Platforms

is occasionally required is to look left and right with the X and O buttons. Combining move and trigger gives you your only super-move, either a Monkey Vacuum or a Nuclear Banana. The super moves require power battery pickups, which are pretty easy to find, so you can use them pretty often. Catching monkeys gets a little trickier, and if you miss them they steal your bananas, which is basically your life. Using the Monkey Vacuum makes it really easy, and even the extremely cheeky space monkey at the end of each level goes without a fight. The game seems to be designed for young kids, lots bright colours and plenty of cuddly characters making the right gurgly noises. Each of the monkeys has a name and personality, and there are hundreds of different ones throughout the game. The controls are extremely basic, and just waving the controller around will pretty much get you from stage to stage. The story levels are even labelled easy to hard; hard being “dad’s help required”.

PC X360 Kinect

PS3 Move

Wii PSP DS 3DS

Score

70 73


Wii Play Motion

Motion Plus Demo Actually, a bit more than just that…

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ii games that come with hardware sell very well. With this fact in mind you wonder why third party titles seldom have hardware as a general addition to their game. The hardware sold with games is, most of the time, something that is required to play the game, like a Motion Plus. Wii Play Motion comes with an extra controller that has built in Motion Plus. There will be some families that don’t have any form of Motion Plus and this will be great addition to their Wii remotes. Wii Play, the predecessor of this game, came with an extra controller for almost the same price. And Wii Play sold 26.71 million copies! Just like most first party side-line games, Wii Play Motion’s main purpose is demonstration of the Motion Plus. We have had the Motion Plus for over two years now, so why would a demonstration be required? Well, why not? The set of 12 games that come with the new

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by Brian Murdoch

title have enough meat on them to not be considered a simple demonstration, though, although after a few sessions they will become very easy... just like after a few sessions of Wii Sports. The entry level of the game could actually be as low as five years old. The games are playable by everyone, and while there is a recommendation of 10+, I have seen plenty children under the age of ten enjoy themselves with this title. There is precision needed and a few tricks to learn but when it comes to balancing ice cream scoops on an ice cream cone there is fun to be had without to much challenge. The group fun that can be had with this title is unbelievable; just when you think that a game is going to be boring because of each person is taking turns to play, it unlocks a combination mode for two players to play at the same time. In Treasure Twirl it’s fun to dive by yourself to

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are at least two ways to play each game, but some have as many as six. My favourite to watch was Veggie Guarden which I fell into the habit of calling “Whack-a-Mole”. Players will soon find their own nick names for the games and everyone will understand which game they are talking about. When helping make the South African Nintendo TV adverts it was a blast to watch the families uncontrollable smacking of the Wii remote to stop the moles from stealing the veggies. Then, after being informed that this was a competition and points were gained I laughed harder at the sabotage that was done to get more points. There is no way to cheat in the game but sitting on your opponent and pinning them down does slow their score rate. Favourite games and activities are made and passed down through families and this title will be pasted down in mine. g

AT A GLANCE: A set of Motion Plus demonstration games that turn into more when other players are added. Developer: Nintendo Publisher: Nintendo Distributor: Core Group

Parental Advisory Violence Language Sex Drug Use Prejudice

A gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011

Accessibility Hard-Core Medium Casual

Wii Platforms

get the treasures but true team work is needed when each person has a side of the big cage to carry the treasures to the top without getting hit by an array of sea creatures. Friends are really needed when searching for ghosts around the house. Spooky Search might be confusing at first but turns into a very thrilling fight when needing two or more players to catch a ghost. Watch out for in the later stages in that the ghosts start taking back their own. Jump Park and Flutter Fly are the worst games but that could just be because my friends and family are better at the games than I am. We generally make a competition of the games and take score of the positions player get in the games. The scoring gets very creative with some of them as it’s a general team effort but we seem to come out with a winner at the end. The first time we tried this, the games were practised once and then played. This took around six hours and we only played one version of each game. There

PC X360 Kinect

PS3 Move

Wii PSP DS 3DS

Score

85 75


PlayStation Move Heroes

All the Heroes!

Our favourite swashbucklers in one fun adventure!

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ake three of the most popular game franchise duos (minus a certain pair of spaghetti eating plumbers) and mash them up into one action adventure romp - at least, that was the idea with PlayStation Move Heroes. The game combines the talents of Jak and Daxter, Rachet and Clank, and Sly and Bently; each stars of their own successful franchises. This platform style game was developed by Nihilistic Games (a fledgling developer comprised of ex-Lucas Arts & Rogue Entertainment developers), who had no involvement with any of the three original franchises. Naughty Dog (Jak & Daxter), Insomniac Games (Rachet & Clank) and Sucker Punch (Sly Cooper) are the original developers, none of whom contributed to this game. However, fans of either series will not feel disappointed; each character is true to their wise-cracking nature and there are many references to the individual game storylines. The game also features maps based on various levels from the original games,

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by Suvesh Arumugam

making it fun for fans. The story is simple; our heroes have been teleported from their native worlds by two surprisingly small looking reptile things, and are forced to compete against each other for the crown of Ultimate Hero. At first, our hero’s competitive nature has them trash talking each other, but they soon realise that the planet is full of creatures called Whibbles, who are extremely cute and loveable. However the Whibbles are enslaved by their cruel masters, and their planet has been decimated by the energy required to host the competition. Eventually our Heroes must team up and rescue the creatures from slavery, and also free their planet’s energy source (along with saving the universe, of course). The game is not very complex, comprised of four worlds: Paris, Metropolis City, Haven City and Planet X (one from each series and one original world), each broken up into various locations; representing a group mini-

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get those extra bonus points. It has enough challenge to make playing against one another for score or elimination fun, and it’s the type of game you can practice to death to achieve perfect scores. Once you’ve completed the story, the game still allows you to go back for bonus crystal and high score runs. Since the days of “Crash Bash” (which I still think is the most fun four people can have without getting arrested), there just haven’t been enough good party games. This is a perfect game to buy for the family, especially if the Move is a new addition to the household. Easy controls for fun, uncomplicated games are a great bonus for those big family occasions, and the quirky characters and loveable Whibbles will appeal to young gamers. The multiplayer cooperative mode is limited to two, which is a drawback for this type of game, but otherwise it’s a great laugh to team up as your favourite dynamic duo and bash some insolent robots! g

AT A GLANCE: Your favourite heroes in one game! A great family game and good for the kids, too. Developer: Nihilistic Software Publisher: SCEE Distributor: Ster Kinekor

Parental Advisory Violence Language Sex Drug Use Prejudice

10+ gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011

Accessibility Hard-Core Medium Casual

PS3 Platforms

games. The mini-games come in four varieties: Bowling, Frisbee, Shooting and Hack & Slash. There are some small variations in-between, like sometimes they give you laser whip to crush your enemies, other time the character’s signature bolt or crook is all that is needed. The game mostly decides what weapons you can use, though your choice of character will also affect the kind of weapons slightly. In general though, the mini-games are all very similar, and there are altogether about 50 levels. You can get a buddy to play as your side-kick, if you want to be any one of the famous hero teams. The mini-games themselves are fairly easy to pick up, and it’s hard not to score gold on all but a few of the levels. The game has a very linear direction, from level one to final boss, so not much thought is required. Having said that, it is very easy to play and a lot of fun. The game controls are generally simple, but the frisbee and bowling games require some complex twists and turns to

PC X360 Kinect

PS3 Move

Wii PSP DS 3DS

Score

75 77


Theatre of War 3: Korea

The Forgotten War Simulator As real as it’s ever going to get

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aving never played any games in the Theatre of War franchise, I was initially daunted at the task of taking on a RTS in a series renowned for its high level of realism. The first thing that was apparent was that the developers, 1C Company, had taken great pains to accurately recreate the Korean War, though the campaigns are limited to only the American and North Korean armies. ToW 3 boasts an extraordinary amount of information for almost every vehicle and weapon used in what has become known as the Forgotten War. Individual soldiers, including the crew of vehicles, have their own stats and the game even keeps track of their ammunition. This overwhelming level of complexity is not helped by the tutorial. It’s short and lacking in information, making the manual a required read in order to have the faintest clue as to what exactly is happening on the screen, let alone actually commanding an army. This makes it

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by Lein Baart fiendishly hard at first for newcomers to the series, and the first couple of battles will likely be a lesson in patience as you learn the intricacies of command. ToW 3 features no set story line, nor actual historical battles. Rather play takes place in two stages, the first being a map of the Korean peninsula, and the second the battlefield. The majority of the game takes place at the battlefield stage, and it’s here the true depth of the title shows itself. You either are on defence or offence, depending on what happened in the first stage, and this limits the amount and type of units you have at your disposal for the battle ahead. You are able to select which units from the regiment are to be taken in, and are even allowed to swap individuals in and out of a unit from your reserves. The battle itself can be rather slow, especially when manoeuvring your army on the map. Once bullets start flying though, things quickly heat up to a frenetic pace

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leaving you with still shots of explosions and smoke as you try to figure out if you’re actually winning. The game also crashes often, both in and out of combat, and can leave you tearing your hair out as you crash just when you’re about to win a battle. Finally you’re left with the AI’s rather stupid pathfinding. Often units will fail to heed a simple movement order, or will travel in circles trying to reach a destination, frequently straight into a fortified enemy position. They fail to take cover when under fire, and after combat they continue to crawl on the ground, if you are lucky to get them to move at all. ToW 3 is not an easy title to come to grips with. Its brutally steep learning curve and level of intricacy can be off-putting to those not familiar with the series, and will surely frustrate many newcomers. However, given time the game does come into its own, and no doubt hardcore RTS enthusiasts will find great joy in this title. g

AT A GLANCE: Despite being hampered by numerous problems, ToW 3 is a worthy title if you are patient enough. Developer: Developer Publisher: Publisher Distributor: Distributor

Parental Advisory Violence Language Sex Drug Use Prejudice

16+ gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011

Accessibility Hard-Core Medium Casual

PC Platforms

as you order your units about in a desperate attempt to secure victory. Combat can be disappointingly linear, with the majority of tactical thinking required during manoeuvring. Usually things devolve into a mad rush to push as many units to the objective point, while many times a battle can be won, or lost, for no clear reason. Theatre of War 3 looks great. The maps, though limited in number, are beautifully detailed and suitably epic in scale. While individual models may be somewhat bland, they are smoothly animated and suitably defined, making it easy to pick out individuals from the veritable horde usually on screen. The game features no soundtrack, which while odd at first makes battles intense as the boom of exploding shells and the rattle of machine gun fire adds to the frenzied atmosphere of combat. ToW 3 suffers heavily from a number of issues, the most noticeable being the heavy toll it takes on your system. During battle the game slows to a virtual crawl, frequently

PC X360 Kinect

PS3 Move

Wii PSP DS 3DS

Score

70 79


Cars 2:The Videogame

It’s a Race… And that’s pretty much it.

And that is one aspect where it shines: the voice acting. The voices are incredible, and players who saw the films will immediately recognise them all. In terms of the racing, players will have to make it around a variety of tracks and naturally end in pole position. The racing is nothing new, as racers will get different kinds of special weapons such as oil slicks, rockets and machine guns to mow down the competition. It does become a bit repetitive after a while, but then again, the game is aimed at the younger players. With that said, it doesn’t mean that older players won’t find joy in it - even though it might be short lived. The graphics are fairly good, the voice overs are terrific and the controls are incredibly easy. It’s best suited for fans of them film, but it will also kill a couple of hours on a Sunday afternoon. g

AT A GLANCE: Although it’s not really intellectually stimulating, it’s fun for younger players. Developer: Avalanche Software Publisher: Disney Interactive Distributor: Prima Interactive

Parental Advisory Violence Language Sex Drug Use Prejudice

3+ 80

Accessibility Hard-Core Medium Casual

X360 Platforms

I

t is a drum that has been banged too many times, but games based on movies tend to be more on the horrible side than actually being good. While Cars 2 don’t exactly fall into the horrible category, there are a couple of missed aspects that would have helped it to almost break free of the stereotype. As gamers will guess, the game is loosely based on the film, where players are engaged in all sorts of races. While the film has a fairly hilarious plot, the game virtually has none. The training missions are quite simple, but it’s rather difficult to distinguish where the training ends and the main mission’s racing starts. One great thing about the game is that players have a huge variety of characters to choose from, all of them voiced by the actors of the film (or very close imitations thereof).

by Charlie Fripp

PC X360 Kinect

PS3 Move

Wii PSP DS 3DS

Score

79

gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011


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Captain America: Super Soldier

Ultimate Warrior A surprising game indeed

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t’s not often that a game released to support a movie franchise does anything spectacular. So, when Captain America: Super Soldier arrived for review, there was much rolling of eyes, and even a little gnashing of teeth. But, quite honestly, this is one of those games that falls into a different category – it’s still a movie-based game and it’s far from perfect. But when compared to any of the other movie-based titles that hit the shelves of late, Captain America rises up above the competition. Naturally, the player assumes the role of Captain America, the World War II super-hero that takes on the forces of Hydra, led by the enigmatic Red Skull. In this role, the player becomes a one-man army, taking on a whole bunch of the Skull’s genetically altered minions. It could easily have devolved into a linear button-masher but, while it does still feature elements of hammering the buttons and an often linear story-line, Captain America manages to save itself from becoming ‘just another

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by Walt Pretorius movie game’ with some clever elements that really set it apart. First off, there are the game’s looks. They’re pretty good for a game of this type, with highly detailed environments and character models, complemented by good animation. The voice acting isn’t bad, either, although you’ll have to deal with that ridiculous Hollywood version of a German accent that turns every ‘s’ into a ‘sh’ sound. There are some big names behind the voice talent, including some of the actors from the movie, like Chris Evans, Tommy Lee Jones and Hugo Weaving. The real delight comes from the combat, though. On the surface it’s pretty simple, with one button for melee attacks and another for throwing Cap’s shield. But the apparent simplicity of the combat hides a system that is a bit more tactical than one might assume. When combined with counters, grapples and acrobatic moves, the whole affair ends up being rather enjoyable… not brain-busting, but good fun.

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And then there’s the movement, divided between normal running around and slick movement puzzles that test the player’s timing and allow Cap to show off his acrobatic skills. Extra experience points can be earned by playing through the game’s challenge mode. New challenges are unlocked periodically, with missions ranging between beating up a certain number of bad guys within a given time period through to puzzling out how to reach hidden objects, and even navigating a maze in a mission extremely reminiscent of Pac-Man. While Captain America: Super Soldier is not a perfect game, it is surprisingly good when considering that it is here to support a movie release. The most obvious problem with the game is that it is a little too easy, but it does have variable difficulty levels to help mitigate that. In the end, it’s a game that is fun, if nothing else, and fans of the film will enjoy this often amusing and rather addictive combat adventure title. g

AT A GLANCE: Captain America: Super Soldier is proof that games based on movies can be fun and put together fairly well. Developer: Next Level Games Publisher: Sega Distributor: Nu Metro

Parental Advisory Violence Language Sex Drug Use Prejudice

16+ gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011

Accessibility Hard-Core Medium Casual

X360 Platforms

The linearity of the game is actually fairly minor. While the game’s story is delivered in such a fashion, and there are no side missions to speak of, the player has quite a bit of freedom within each mission, and can even take different approaches to achieving the same goal, at times. The story is set in a massive castle complex and, within its confines, the player’s movement is almost free. Every now and then Cap might comment that he is straying off of the right path, but this doesn’t happen too often. The missions will also offer varied activities, from time to time. The game also offers a ton of collectable items and minitasks, like blowing up anti-aircraft guns and destroying sculptures. One of the joys here is that the player will be able to complete tasks like these without finding every single item: collecting fifty ceramic eggs, for example, can be achieved because there are more than fifty within the game. Collectibles also add to experience, to upgrade Cap’s combat abilities, and may unlock film reels and diary entries to give the tale a little more depth.

PC X360 Kinect

PS3 Move

Wii PSP DS 3DS

Score

79 83


Alcatraz

Short But Not Sweet You don’t always have to feel bad for the small guy…

General turned terrorist. While the setting is unique, that’s about as good as it gets. And it sounds a bit like the plot for The Rock, too… The plot is paper thin, serving as an excuse to shoot people more than anything else. Graphically the game is horrible, though I am inclined to be forgiving on this ground due to its indie status. The soundtrack is uninspired and repetitive, and the voice-acting is poor. The game also suffers from weak A., the multitude of terrorists you will gun down seem to have super senses but no actual grey matter. Alcatraz is mercifully short, with the game only lasting 3 hours or so. In this time however you will be, uh, treated to hordes of AK-47 wielding enemies, while you run from point A to B, shooting everything in sight. The title does have one or two interesting set-pieces, but these are short lived and can be as frustrating as they are unique. g

AT A GLANCE: A flawed game that, while having some potential, has been poorly designed. Don’t bother with it unless you’re very bored. Developer: Silden Publisher: City Interactive Distributor: Apex Interactive

Parental Advisory Violence Language Sex Drug Use Prejudice

16+ 84

Accessibility Hard-Core Medium Casual

PC Platforms

I

ndie games, short for independent games, are not generally known for their amazing visuals or incredible sound. It’s understandable, these games did not have the financial backing of a major publisher and thus cannot be judged to the same standards as triple A titles. Instead they usually rely on creativity and ingenuity, something that will draw players in and keep them coming back. These titles can be unbelievably addictive when they get it right as they bring something fresh and exciting to the table. Alcatraz, however, seems bereft of these qualities. Developed by small Polish studio Silden, it’s more of a stunted clone of titles such as Call of Duty: Modern Warfare than an innovative approach to an already crowded genre. Alcatraz has you take the role of Captain Joe Harmsky, a marine sent in as a one-man-army to Alcatraz Island when it is taken over by a former U.S.

by Lein Baart

PC X360 Kinect

PS3 Move

Wii PSP DS 3DS

Score

40

gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011


The Next Big Thing

Adventure is Back... The best adventure game you have probably never heard of.

by James Francis

A

dventure games. Instead of writing an actual review, I thought it better to do some navelgazing. Here you have a decent adventure game. Not brilliant, but it is decent and falls just short of glory. I’ll get to that later. The fact is that it can beat the pants off half the triple-A games out there. The cardinal sin of any game is to not get the genre right. You might have the nicest this and the best that, but misstep on the genre and you are toast. If a game is aimed at a Half-Life 2 audience, you will need to follow the book Half-Life 2 wrote. Don’t get too creative, but please bring something new to the table. Give us what we like and then surprise us. The Next Big Thing does that. It’s a whimsical pointand-click adventure that I’d happily compare to the greats of the genre - the Lucasarts catalog, for example. In fact, I would cry tears of joy if this studio got handed

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the task of a Grim Fandango update - the same game, but done with this game’s interface and beautiful shaded visuals. It stumbles a little here and there - at times the story is shaky and the jokes fall flat - but I personally have not laughed as much during an adventure game since replaying the Monkey Island special editions last year. Before that I hardly laughed at all since the ‘90s. I am not a happy person. But this game made me happy - and that is fantastic. It speaks volume for the quality at work here. The Next Big Thing also scratches that itch the Telltale games seemingly refuse to reach (bar the excellent first episode of Hector): object combination puzzles and smart dialog problems. One beauty of a puzzle has you find ways to torture the Poet of Pain to get the best answers for a twisted psychology exam given by a mad Professor Fly. Perhaps that needs more explanation. In The Next Big

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sort of casual angle. Oh, you can get this for the casual gamers in your life. The Next Big Thing outshines all other hint systems before it. The experience is rich and the world is wonderful. But it seems so wasted. Why are we twiddling our thumbs, watching games like Homefront tank, while something like this has to to slink around in casual and bargain obscurity? It just doesn’t seem fair. Why aren’t adventure games popular anymore? Why is it that if I walk blindly into a shelf in a game shot, I’ll likely scatter shooter cases to the floor? Well, maybe it’s because we like shooting things. I like shooting things too. Maybe adventure just went past its sell-by date. Maybe the iPad will rescue it. Whatever. I’m going to play some more of this game. g

AT A GLANCE: A smart and beautiful adventure game that plays by the book of classic point and click. Developer: Pendulo Publisher: Focus Distributor: Apex Interactive

Parental Advisory Violence Language Sex Drug Use Prejudice

12+ gamecca review • issue 26 • August 2011

Accessibility Hard-Core Medium Casual

PC Platforms

Thing you largely play as a maverick sports writer who is tracking down a missing younger female reporter, because she has his tickets to a big boxing match. The story revolves around monsters - movie creatures, to be specific. In this world, monsters are real and they make a living on the big screen. Conspiracy and malice is obviously afoot this can’t all be for boxing tickets - and it is quite a ride. The game does fall short, though. The fun logic puzzles are not as frequent as I’d have liked and at times the jokes don’t really translate well (this was originally a Spanish game). But while it might rue its silver medal, I don’t. This is a hard race - you don’t just walk into a silver. At one point you engage in a circular conversation with the mad professor, involving the word “peculiar”. It’s pretty genius and is a real tip of its hat towards the Adventure Hall Of Famers. Yet here I am, reviewing this as a budget title on some

PC X360 Kinect

PS3 Move

Wii PSP DS 3DS

Score

90 87


Flashtastic

Don’t Look Back It’s all about the running...

By James Francis

T

Sometimes you just have to keep going. Don’t look back. Don’t dwell on the past. Let bygones be bygones. Because if you do not, you will die. Be it an alien invasion, a demented game show or as a bizarre

Russian super-weapon, the jump-and-run genre is all about speed and precision, not to mention sharp reflexes and a lot of luck. . g

Canabalt http://www.adamatomic.com/canabalt/ Run! Why? No time! Run! Just run! And jump! Jump! Actually, don’t worry about running. Just focus on the next gap or obstacle, and then jump! Why? No time! The next gap is already on its way! Jump! Is that a space ship? I don’t know! Who cares! Gap! Jump! Aim for that window! Jump! Stupid birds! Jump! Are we getting faster? I think we are... Yup, we are definitely picking up speed. This can’t be good... Jump! What was that?! That ship! It’s dropping something! Right in front o- SPLAT! You have reached 500 meters. Would you like again? Stupid game. Play something else.

Go To Hell http://www.addictinggames.com/arcade-games/go-tohell-game.jsp It might have been suggested that you go there, but how easy it is to reach Hell depends entirely on your circumstances. If you made a deal with the devil or some being of lesser evil, like a four year old, it will probably be a quick ride down. But if you opt for the tour plan on the other side of the scale and decide to dig your way down, it’s a bit harder. First is the pressure of getting food, because all that digging is tiring. Then you also need to grab health on the way down, because you will be running into worms, bats, spikes and worse. Don’t forget the gold coins - you’ll need them. Oh, and don’t drown - or get burned by lava. Fortunately every cavern on the planet appears to be where you decided to dig.

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gamecca regular • issue 26 • August 2011


Flood Runner 3 http://jayisgames.com/games/flood-runner-3armageddon/ You have reached the limits of Canabalt and Robot Unicorn just doesn’t do it for you anymore. Maybe what we need is not just a volcano, but a flood too. Then we’ll take on not single flat areas, but various platforms going up and down. Throw on a suit that can make you glide and you just might have a chance against the dinosaurs, giant squids and more that await you in this action game. It’s not easy: don’t attempt Flood Runner 3 before feeling you have conquered the other games on this list.

Soviet Rocket Giraffe http://jayisgames.com/archives/2011/05/soviet_rocket_ giraffe.php Bless the Ruskies. Not content with the idea of winning a war in any conventional way, they decide to strap two rockets to a giraffe’s neck and see what happens. As it turns out, the giraffe’s neck extends eternally, allowing him to double-jump his head in the air, or grind it for speed. Points are awarded for style, distance, tricks and getting as close to the edges as possible. It’s a much more forgiving game that the other titles here - you might even think you are doing pretty well. Then you die and see you have attained a measly two stars. Go, Soviet Rocket Giraffe, Go!

Exit Path http://armorgames.com/play/5917/exit-path Not every running game is all about running like hell. Speed is still essential in Exit Path, as are reflexes, but the sense of urgency is more in how fluid you can be. Stuck in some strange game show, you have to clear obstacle courses or platforms, spinning blades, swinging axes and red-hot lasers as quickly as possible. Die and you get a quick respawn as well as a trace of your last movements. Sure, you could just pace it and finish things safely, but that defeats the purpose. And besides, after a while even the safe approach isn’t enough to leave you unscathed.

gamecca regular • issue 26 • August 2011

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Mobility

Fresh Some new releases...

by Charlie Fripp

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Mobile games are skirting a fine line between being games on mobile phones and high-quality productions squeezed into a small screen. For that reason, we will be taking a look at some of the latest

releases for the iPad and Android-based devices. While some of them might not seem to be graphically on par with others, they will be instantly recognisable..g

9mm It’s a bit of a lame name, but players will take on the role of John “Loose” Kannon, who has been tasked with cleaning up the streets in their own way. Naturally things go a bit crazy, and his whole team is placed in firing line for killing a drug lord’s brother. We’ve seen the story before but 9mm executes it rather well. The graphics are superb, but the controls could have been a bit better. Worth the purchase, though.

Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows - Part 2 As the name implies, this mobile game is based on the second part of the last film, you know, the one where… oh, never mind. Being on a mobile device, the graphics could have been a bit better, considering the technology out there, but it’s still a fun game none the less. Players will take control of one of the three main characters, and without giving away too much, battle it out unto the final showdown. A must for any fan.

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gamecca regular • issue 26 • August 2011


Warplanes: A History ofAerial Combat Technically speaking, Warplane isn’t a game. But it’s a great app for those who absolutely love machines of war. Warplane takes the user on a stunning ride through over 200 authentic airplanes from different eras and features interactive cutaway diagrams and schematics that let you look closely at their every detail. Apart from the detailed photo-library of over 200 planes, the app also features a selection of videos of certain planes in action. It’s not game, but airplane enthusiasts will find just as much joy in it.

Cowboys and Aliens Another mobile game based on the film, which is based on comic, which is based on an actual book – or something like that. Cowboys and Aliens makes our selection this month, purely for the fact that the film is due out anytime and it stars Daniel Craig and Olivia Wilde. Players take on the role of Zeke and it will be up to them to defend the human race against an alien invasion in the Wild West. The graphics are alright for a mobile, but they’re not great either. Controls are your standard fare, but the game should bring a smile to any fan of the graphic novel.

Backstab “My name is Henry Blake, once a proud officer in England’s Royal Navy. Now I stand a shattered man. Betrayed, imprisoned, my fiancée taken away, I have now found my freedom - and soon I shall find my revenge.” Yes, we have heard it all before, but in the case of Backstab, it’s really great. The graphics of this third-person adventure are truly remarkable, and the controls are really easy. It will be up to the players to become a rogue killer and take vengeance on those who betrayed him. gamecca regular • issue 26 • August 2011

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Essential Classics

Resident Evil The start of the Zombiepocalypse

by Walt Pretorius

Z

ombies are cool. OK, maybe you don’t want to invite one round to the house for a bit of co-op gaming, and the idea of your sister dating one isn’t particularly appealing but, just like pirates, ninjas and dinosaurs, they are cool. And even cooler is laying waste to them in droves – something that the Resident Evil franchise has enabled us to do time and again. When the first Resident Evil came out, consoles were young. Graphics were nowhere near what we have these days. Ideas were still being developed, and norms of game

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play that we now expect didn’t exist yet. And yet… and yet, this game, which by today’s standards would be seen as, well, awful, grabbed the gaming world by the throat in a rush of adrenaline. This comparatively simple title saw gamers across the globe sitting on the edge of their seats, palms sweaty around the controller, wondering if they would have enough ammo to get through the next wave of flesh-craving undead monsters… Ah, yes. Raccoon City, redolent with the heady odour of decay. Umbrella Corporation, that thoughtful company gamecca regular • issue 26 • August 2011


whose quest for glory almost destroyed man-kind. And, of course, the T virus, that cuddly little microscopic scamp that turned infected humans in shambling, drooling zombies. You may think that movies introduced these ideas to us, but rest assured, Milla was only following what had already been set out by game developers. And while the movies may have gone off on their own weird tangent, the inspiration at the core of them lies with these games. The fact that we can say that only goes further to enforce the impact and popularity of the original Resident gamecca regular • issue 26 • August 2011

Evil… not only have there been numerous games added to the franchise, from early PlayStation models through to Nintendo’s new 3DS, but there have been numerous movies based on these games, too. Not only that – many survival horror games still use ideas set forth in the first Resident Evil game, too. So next time you sit down and prepare for scare, bear in mind that much of the horror you experience is thanks to a game that was revolutionary, even though it might be laughable by today’s standards. g

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MSI 990FXA-GD80 Motherboard

The Right Price A great AMD option for those on a budget

by Alex Scanlon

M

SI continue to impress with their products, and they manage to deliver reliability and good performance across their whole range of devices. Sure, higher end stuff makes for quite a performance boost, but a user on a budget will be able to rest assured that they can still get the best possible performance for their budget with products from this company. While we most often get to see Intel based boards from MSI, this month we’re taking a look at an offering for those who prefer their processors to be AMD flavoured. In all honesty, there isn’t too much of a difference between MSI’s Intel and AMD boards, save for the slot into which the CPU fits. One could argue a similar point about the processors themselves, but we’re not going to start that particular bun-fight. The MSI 990FXA-GD80 is a good option for an AMD user on a budget. The board supports AMD FX, Phenom II, Athlon II and Sempron processors with it’s AM3+ socket, meaning that it’s fairly versatile for

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those who need to make purchasing decisions based on processor. The board will squeeze everything it can out of the processor, thanks to MSI’s OC Genie II system. It’s really easy to use, and extremely fast... the whole affair is automated, meaning that the user can overclock and unlock hidden processor cores in seconds (the box claims one second, but that all depends on system performance and configuration). Speed aside, it’s an extremely simple way to unlock the PC’s potential, and it works rather well. Like all boards these days, the 990FXA is emblazoned with statements that it makes use of military grade components (because we’re still impressed by that kind of claim). Tantalum core hi-c caps, super ferrite chokes and solid capacitors are go towards improving performance and, rather importantly, lifespan. It might seem funny when they say that parts won’t explode, but having a component pop is no laughing matter, so that’s really a plus point. The board also comes with numerous features that are extremely useful. These include SuperCharger, which provides high speed recharging for mobile devices, even when the PC is not powered up, and the lamentably named g a m e c c a h a r d wa r e • i s s u e 2 6 • A u g u s t 2 0 1 1


Winki 3, which allows for web-surfing, file maintenance, photo and document editing and more, even if the user has no OS installed. Other features include a mouse-controlled BIOS and onboard THX audio. The board offers users four USB 3.0 ports and six SATA6 ports, so it allows for fast performance of peripherals and components. In addition, four PCI Express X16 slots mean that those who want to run multiple graphics cards, in either SLI or Crossfire configurations, can do so... up to four graphics cards can be supported, depending on their size. All this comes at a very reasonable price... reliability, performance and a long life-span won’t break the bank here, and the versatility in CPU support means that it will have a wide appeal for AMD users. It’s not a top of the line board, but it does allow for a lot of power, when all is said and done. At the price, one would expect far less than it actually delivers, which is a bonus. g

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AT A GLANCE: PROS:

• Good performance • Great price • Good features

CONS:

• Graphics cards limited for larger devices.

Manufacturer: MSI Distributor: Pinnacle Africa Online: www.pinnacle.co.za RRP: R1 999

TECH SPECS: • AMD 9 series chipset • 4 x USB 3.0 ports • 6 x SATA6 ports • 4 x PCI E x16 slots • THX Audio • Click BIOS

Score

Very good performance from a board that is relatively light in price.

80 95


Samsung SyncMaster DSA950 3D LED Monitor

Eye-candy

Good looks and great performance by Walt Pretorius

I

t’s been some time coming - thanks to clashing schedules and all that kind of thing, we’ve been waiting some time to take a look at one of Samsung’s monitor offerings. But the SyncMaster SA950 was well worth the wait. The apparent battles between monitor suppliers have been more or less dominated by LG and Samsung for some time now, with both companies pushing out new technologies on an almost daily basis. Samsung’s latest idea, encapsulated in their 9 Series range of SyncMaster monitors, is effective 3D in a desktop format. While this is a major selling point, it shouldn’t be the only consideration when looking at a purchase of the SA950... this monitor has a lot more going for it than just good 3D performance. From the get-go, the SA950 makes an impression, thanks to a rather unique look. Rather than being supported by a central pillar, the monitor connects to the base via a wide metalic support set to the far right of the device. This curved support, combined with the

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brushed metal and glossy black finish of the device, makes for a monitor that definitely looks good - and unique. But the glossy black surface is also a downfall for the unit. Call me picky, but I hate fingerprints on sleek looking surfaces, and the surface of this monitor marks up very quickly, thanks to that shine. This is exacerbated by the fact that the controls are touch sensitive, and are set into the glossy part of the pillar. Even worse, the screen part of the monitor is also very glossy. Being the kind of person that chops the hands off of people who touch the screen, that’s not a big problem, but a light beam coming in at an unfortunate angle may make viewing the screen difficult, particularly if the image is a dark one. That, though, is the only criticism for an otherwise superb viewing device. With Samsung’s general magic, like the ECO Light Sensor, ECO Motion Sensor, ultra clear panel and Magic Angle Technology, this unit performs beautifully and economically, delivering excellent visuals g a m e c c a h a r d wa r e • i s s u e 2 6 • A u g u s t 2 0 1 1


across its 23 inch wide screen. Numerous inputs, like HDMI and DVI, make it versatile, and an audio output means that it can be used for more than just computing in fact, it makes for an awesome console monitor, too. The quick and simple control system makes it a breeze to use, too. And the 3D? Well, it certainly does push the price up, but the performance is good. The monitor supports several 3D modes, for which a pair of active shutter glasses are included. The glasses are more stylish than some we’ve seen, and are battery operated. Using a flat battery for them is a good idea, but if the power runs out, you won’t just be able to recharge them quickly. In addition, the monitor provides a 2D to 3D function, which works fairly well, but don’t expect to see your movies is breath-taking depth... the system is based on assumptions and while it works well, it isn’t absolutely perfect. Despite the relatively high price tag and a few little quibbles, the SA950 is a superb monitor indeed. g g a m e c c a h a r d wa r e • i s s u e 2 6 • A u g u s t 2 0 1 1

AT A GLANCE: PROS:

• Awesome image • Looks great • Lots of features

CONS:

• Pricey • Fingerprint magnet

Manufacturer: Samsung Distributor: Samsung Online: www.samsung.co.za RRP: R6 499

TECH SPECS: • 23” Widescreen • Ultra Clear panel • ECO Motion Sensor • ECO Light Sensor • LED • Magic Angle

Score

Although not cheap, this is a superb monitor indeed.

97 97


Sony Vaio F226 Laptop

Understated

Performance without the garish looks by Rob Edwards

W

hether or not there is a definite move away from desktop computing towards the more portable notebook or laptop alternative is debatable, but the increase in power of the latter categories certainly opens up the option for a wider variety of users. Where laptops used to be generally less powerful than desktops not so long ago, these devices are certainly catching up. Take the Sony Vaio F226, for example. It sports a rather impressive set of specifications: an Intel i7 CPU running at 2.2GHz, 8GB of RAM, a 640GB HDD capacity and 1GB of VRAM running off of an NVidia chipset. This is supported by a 16.4 inch LED display, as well as a backlit keyboard and highly effective touch pad. A Blu-ray drive, multi-card reader and numerous other bells and whistles are standard for this model. It all looks very good on paper, of course, but the proof is in the pudding. The real test is how it actually performs. And we can safely say that it does what it is

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supposed to admirably. It is powerful enough to be treated as a multimedia and even gaming machine - although, in the latter aspect, it should be considered a middle-range option. We have seen some laptops, built for gaming, that certainly out-perform this one. Still, the performance - even in gaming - in none too shabby. In fact, the only real criticism is levelled at the unit’s speakers, which (as is often the case with laptops) are a little less than satisfactory. That’s no real matter, though - anyone using this device for multimedia or gaming purposes will either be using headphones or external speakers, anyway. The whole unit looks really good, finished in matt black metal and durable, low-gloss black plastic. It sports a full chicklet-style keyboard that is wonderfully quiet, and a beautifully sensitive touch pad. While it is capable of high end performance like gaming, the F226 hasn’t been designed to look the part. That’s not a bad thing, trust me. Many of the higher end laptops buy g a m e c c a h a r d wa r e • i s s u e 2 6 • A u g u s t 2 0 1 1


into the whole idea of ‘looking cool’, which often turns out garish. The F226, though, looks like it means business, and it does. This device would be as comfortable in a business setting as it would anywhere else, with the added bonus of being powerful and pretty impressive. It doesn’t show off with its looks, which seems to grant it some weird kind of confidence... And confidence is what the user of this well built, powerful laptop will have when they power it on and get to business - or pleasure. Further versatility is granted by two USB 3.0 ports, a single USB 2.0 port and an HDMI output. Built in wireless functionality and a FireWire port, as well as a LAN port, take care of connectivity. All in all, this stylish and understated laptop makes for a great option - it delivers power without being garish and, while not being the most potent laptop on the market, still makes for a solid multi-usage option. Well done, Sony! g g a m e c c a h a r d wa r e • i s s u e 2 6 • A u g u s t 2 0 1 1

AT A GLANCE: PROS:

• Generous spec • Stylish • Versatile

CONS:

• Slightly pricey

Manufacturer: Sony Distributor: Sony Online: www.sony.co.za RRP: R19 999

TECH SPECS: • Intel i7 2.2GHz CPU • 640 GB HDD • 8GB RAM • 1GB VRAM • Blu-ray drive • 16.4” screen

Score

It might look understated, but this stylish laptop packs tons of punch!

88 99


Apacer AP520 USB 2.0 Hub

The Extender For those who need more USB access

by Alex Scanlon

O

K, here’s something that is not seen all that often anymore... a USB hub. This four-port USB 2.0 hub from Apacer is a solid device with really good performance, but the question does arise; are USB hubs still necessary? The compact, portable nature of this hub makes it obvious that it is meant for use with notebooks, which often don’t offer enough USB ports. So, in that case, the answer is yes. Let’s be honest - if you’ve used all your desktop PC USB ports you either have too many USB devices, or you need a motherboard upgrade. The unit is rather stylish in looks and is solidly built, so carrying it around shouldn’t provide too many problems. It’s pretty small, too, which helps, and comes with a port for an external power supply, if needed. It also comes with a USB cable that fold-up into the device... this particular cable once again points to notebook use, because it is very short indeed (the only real downside of this capable little device.) So, if you’re after a way to maximise the USB ports on your notebook, this brilliantly priced Apacer solution should provide exactly what you need. g

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AT A GLANCE: PROS:

• Four extra USB ports • Nice price

CONS:

• Only USB 2.0 • Short cable

TECH SPECS: • 4 USB ports • USB 2.0 • Fold-up USB cable

Manufacturer: Apacer Distributor: Pinnacle Africa Online: www.pinnacle.co.za RRP: R155

Score

A rather useful device for those hampered by too few USB ports.

75

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An elegant PS3 charging solution. by Alex Scanlon

K

eeping things tidy when it comes to console controllers can be a bit of a chore. Thankfully Nitho have many solutions, ranging from full PS3 docking systems through to this elegant answer to the console clutter The Charge 4 allows the user to charge up to four PS3 controllers at the same time; two via the special controller mounts it houses, and two via side mounted USB slots. It might not be quite as neat as the Nitho Curve charger we reviewed last month, but for those who do not have four controllers (or additional Move controllers) it’s perfect. The two side USB ports are a great idea, but they don’t really solve the wire-clutter issue. The beautifully built device can be powered either via USB, straight from the console, or with an included power adapter (for constant charging, seeing as console charging stops when the PS3 is turned off). Those running a two controller set-up will be perfectly at home with this stylish device... but if you have Move controllers as well, the Curve might be a better idea. Either way, both units are stylish and help with that whole clutter problem. The Charge 4 also includes LEDs to show charge status. g g a m e c c a h a r d wa r e • i s s u e 2 6 • A u g u s t 2 0 1 1

AT A GLANCE: PROS:

• Looks good • External power option

CONS:

• A bit messy when charging 4 controllers

Manufacturer: Nitho Distributor: Gammatek Online: www.gammatek.co.za RRP: R299

TECH SPECS: • 2 PS3 controller docks • 2 USB ports • USB powered • External power supply • LED charge indicators

Score

A good solution for two controllers, slightly messy for four...

79 101

Nitho Charge 4 PS3 Charger

In Charge


MSI FX620DX Notebook

Balanced

Performance and price in good harmony by Rob Edwards

L

ast month we took a look at MSI’s GT780R laptop, and it made us nervous, because its spec beat most of the desktops in the Gladget office. This month, we have a slightly smaller offering from MSI’s notebook range, just so we can feel a bit better about ourselves (and our machines). Not that the FX620DX is exactly a slouch in the specification department... this little powerhouse might not be top-ofthe-line, buit anyone using it will likely not want for more in the performance stakes. The performance is delivered by an Intel i5 2410M CPU. It’s not the quickest processor around, but it does the trick quite nicely in this case. This is supported by 4GB of DDR3 RAM. Storage is provided by a 500GB HDD, and images are delivered to the 15.6 inch screen via an Nvidia GeForce 540M chipset, running with 1GB of VRAM. Anyone who knows there specs will agree that this is not a bad set of numbers, particularly when

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you consider that it weighs in at a fairly pocket friendly R8 299. Sure, there are cheaper notebooks out there, but the balance between power and price in this one is pretty damned good. It will not deliver the experience that it’s bigger brother does, but that’s OK - this machine, while capable, is not built to house the power that the GT780R does. It’s more of a practical machine, both in size and price, and midrange users will be more than happy with what it delivers. The screen doesn’t hit full HD resolutions, unfortunately, but other than that, it’s pretty much everything a work and mid-level multimedia machine needs to be. And it features great sound - we though we should mention that - as well as an HD webcam. Incidentally, the sound performance is powered by a THX system, so there’s no surprise at its quality. The chicklet-style keyboard is full, despite the slightly smaller size of the unit. This is supported by an effective slightly-left mounted touch pad. An odd design decision g a m e c c a h a r d wa r e • i s s u e 2 6 • A u g u s t 2 0 1 1


placed all the indicator lights (for CAPS Lock, NUM lock and so forth) ‘beneath’ the touch pad, so using it will obscure those indicators. A set of multimedia keys are positioned above the keyboard, including the power switch and an eject button for the unit’s DVD optical drive. The finish of the unit is quite unique - it’s all done in a matt black plastic, textured to resemble... something woven, perhaps? Whatever it may be, it looks pretty cool, although I personally have a preference for the more common brushed-steel look that the GT780R has. One the whole, this machine is pretty decent. It will serve the purposes of a mid-range (maybe even the lower end of the power-user range) very well, and is supported by numerous MSI apps, preinstalled on the unit. It’s priced well, and is reliable and fairly decent where battery life is concerned. It’s also a bit smaller, and lighter, than some of the other models in its class, which makes lugging it around easier. All in all, it’s a good bet for those whose requirements aren’t too extreme. g g a m e c c a h a r d wa r e • i s s u e 2 6 • A u g u s t 2 0 1 1

AT A GLANCE: PROS:

• Fairly good price • Excellent sound • Decent performance

CONS:

• Not a full HD screen

Manufacturer: MSI Distributor: Pinnacle Africa Online: www.pinnacle.co.za RRP: R8 299

TECH SPECS: • • • • • •

Intel i5 CPU 4GB RAM 1GB VRAM 500GB HDD 15.6” LED screen THX audio

Score

With a decent performance and fairly friendly price-tag, this is a good bet.

80 103


Nitho Charging Plus Wii Remote Dock

Style-Power

A good looking Wii charging solution by Rob Edwards

K

eeping your Wii controllers powered up is getting easier and easier, thanks to a large number of third party charger options on the market. The Nitho Charging Plus is a stylish one, allowing two controllers to be charged simultaneously. And the design, which puts the charge interface on the rear of the included battery pack, means that the player can leave their Motion Plus unit connected during the charging process. On the downside, this means that the Motion Plus will need to be removed from the protective rubber housing, which may not sit well with some users. The stylish Charging Plus houses clear plastic cradles for each controller, which light up and indicate charge status - either charging or charged. The Charging Plus connects to the Wii by way of a USB cable. Unfortunately this cable is rather short, meaning that it needs to be positioned very close to the console. That’s not really a train smash in most cases, but it may cause a hassle for some folks. Aside from needing to remove the protective covers and the short USB cable, this is an extremely sensible Wii remote charging solution. And the batteries deliver

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a very good life, too. The unit has a unique look and is certainly aesthetically pleasing. Unfortunately it only charges two remotes, but at the price, buying two isn’t a bad option. g

AT A GLANCE: PROS:

• Nice design • Motion Plus compatible

CONS:

• Short USB cable • Must remove rubber covers from remotes

Manufacturer: Nitho Distributor: Gammatek Online: www.gammatek.co.za RRP: R299

TECH SPECS: • USB powered • Two charging docks • LED charge indicators • High capacity NiMH battery packs

Score

A good looking Wii remote charger, with a unique approach

80

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An Open Letter... From Space

by Christo van Gemert

D

ear Turn 10, At the direction of Dan Greenawalt you’ve produced a fantastic racing franchise, in Forza. A series that has consistently improved on itself and bested its competitors. You’ve grown a community. You’ve made awesome innovations. And you’ve given the fans what they want. Well, for the most part. See, while most games these days ship as incomplete pieces of software – we’ve moaned about this before, where there is more DLC on day 1 than there is actual game content – you’ve given us a fun, complete game. You’ve even given us fans downloadable content packs with content we’ve voted for (see Jalopnik Car Pack for Forza 3). All us loyal fans went and bought the game on

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launch day. Then we eagerly awaited, and purchased, all of the subsequent car packs. There were many of them – easily enough to eclipse the initial game’s purchase price. So I ask you, Turn 10, what the hell you were thinking when you released Forza 3 Ultimate Edition. Here’s a version of the game with all the original content, and all the additional content we purchased. That’s cool. I understand that I could’ve foregone the opportunity to play Forza 3 for the 15 months it took to release the ultimate edition. I’m not bitter that somebody else can go and spend half the money I did to get the same content I now have. But what really grinds my gears is that those late adopters were given exclusive content that none of the loyal fans were given access to. For

me to get the few extra cars – very desirable ones, too – I would need to purchase a copy of Ultimate Edition. Paying R500 just to get mostly the same content I already have, and a handful of extra exotics. Is this how you reward your loyal fans? You haven’t even made the Ultimate Edition cars available for purchase on Xbox Live. This makes me feel really wanted as a “valued member of the community”, a status I got after buying the collector’s edition of the game. I hope you learn from this. If it happens with Forza 4, you’ll lose a fan – no matter how good your game. My loyalty has limited vision, but it’s not blind. Sincerely, Christo. g

gamecca column • issue 26 • August 2011



Gamecca Magazine August 2011