There you have it folks the truly impressive trailer for the upcoming Red Steel 2 from Ubisoft. The original flawed as it was remains a thoroughly entertaining game and one which gave the Wii a bit of a kick start in it’s first few weeks. Part 2 looks even more impressive and the combat system looks to have been tweaked to perfection.
Below are a selection of screens from the game as well as some development art, enjoy.
Capcom and Sega have always been the kings of arcade gaming and while it’s not in the same league as those giants SNK was never far behind. In fact SNK’s biggest title Metal Slug is one of the most famous arcade games in existence. Collected in SNK Vol. 1 are 16 titles from the SNK back catalogue.
Like all compilations the games on offer vary greatly in quality.
As expected the gameplay is all over the place. Some titles such as Metal Slug play amazingly well whereas others are simply playable. Then there are the handful of titles which shoulnotd be worth more than a cursory glance but become strangely addictive. Playing on the Wii you have a choice of controller to use with the Wii remote making things particularly awkward. Using the classic remote makes things far simpler and makes for a much more satisfying experience.
A number of people have repeatedly complained about the audio not being up to scratch with modern games, which is ridiculous as these are retro games. Anyone expecting polished graphics and Dolby digital sound is best advised to look elsewhere. Taken in the context of their time the graphics stand up extremely well by today standards. Sure, they’re a million miles from Killzone 2 but all the titles available look fantastic.
The most impressive aspect of SNK is the sheer re-playability on offer. No matter what genres you enjoy gamers will discover at least one game which they can happily revisit time and time again. Metal Slug has been completed at least 30 times by this reviewer and the other titles in the collection have all been completed multiple visits.
Retro gamers will no doubt get the most out of this fantastic little collection but younger gamers should at least consider a rent. While it’s not on the same level as the recent Sega Mega Drive collection it’sequally as entertaining. Fingers crossed for Vol 2.
- Error was brought to EA’s attention in late April
Publishing giant Electronic Arts have apologised for using the wrong national anthem for Northern Ireland in the Euro 2008 computer game. The mistake was brought to the games publisher’s attention over two months ago in April. A Northern Ireland fan wrote on publisher’s online message boards of his “shock” and how he was “disgusted” by the game.
The fan pointed out that ‘Danny Boy’ is used in the game for the national anthem of Northern Ireland, rather than official anthem ‘God Save The Queen’. But his main point of controversy is due to ‘Amhran na bhFiann’ or ‘The Soldier’s Song’ – the national anthem of the Republic of Ireland – being played as victory music.
“I just bought Uefa Euro 2008. I’m from Northern Ireland and was shocked at some of the discoveries in your game. First of all Northern Ireland’s national anthem is not ‘Danny Boy’. Now for the worst part. when I was playing with NI and finished match at the end of match screen it started playing ‘the soldiers song’ which is the Republic of Ireland’s national anthem” said a user on EA’s message boards who described himself as a “very disappointed gamer” and signed off as Ian Kerr.
He continued: “Just to let you know Northern Ireland is still British and not all Ireland. The national anthem is ‘God Save the Queen’. where do u [sic] get your information on football from because whoever it is has never been to a Northern Ireland match, God Save the Queen is always played as our national anthem. As for the soldier song being played at end of match menu I was left disgusted. So, northern Ireland has no identity now I suppose”.
With many in the North having different cultural views, anger at the mix-up is unlikely to be even across political lines. An EA UK staff member followed the fan’s post with “There’s some excellent feedback here, keep it coming”, followed by a smiley face.
However, since then, EA’s Shaun White was quoted by media outlets as saying: “At EA Sports, we pride ourselves on delivering rich and authentic videogame experiences. We sincerely apologise for this error”.
Reviewer: Craig Jay Gallagher There
exists a rather unfortunate trend where games based upon films are
generally poor. Oft times they are cheap cash in rushed out to coincide
with the films release. In recent years this rule has been broke a
number of times, most significantly by Chronicles of Riddick: Escape
From Butcher Bay which remains to this day the finest FPS on any
platform as well as being based upon a film. Iron Man which is
currently doing extremely well in cinemas is also out across all gaming
platforms. While a long way from the quality of Riddick it’s still a
step above many tie in games.
The story is very loosely based on the film and were it not for
Robert Downey Jr. And Terrence Howard providing voice work you’d be
forgiven for thinking this was a completely separate entity to the
film. Like the film the game begins in a cave where Stark is being held
captive. After his inevitable escape the game plot goes in a different
direction while maintaining a lot of the same themes.
The gameplay is basically run and gun or in the case of Iron Man
hoover and run. Situations general involve you flying into an area,
dispatching some small forces before getting a chance to face off
against a major bad guy such as War Monger or the awesome Titanium Man.
There’s no real variety on offer, but that said there’s a satisfying
sense of accomplishment mowing down hordes of enemy soldiers with a
gattling gun. In fact it’s difficult not to laugh manically as you do
so. The main complaint this reviewer has is that death is so damn
difficult. At times it’s almost impossible to perish which takes away
any real sense of danger.
Visually the game suffers in comparison to it’s PS3 and 360
counterparts. The hardware limitations of the Wii mean we get a more
stripped down. Iron Man looks fine whereas all enemy soldiers look
exactly the same. Buildings are blocky and lack distinction, vehicles
are hard to pick out and overall the game has a rather dreary look. The
inclusion of the Havok engine is difficult to see, in fact were it not
for their logo on the box it would be nigh on impossible to tell. Only
a tiny number of objects can be blown up while everything else just
sits there no matter what pounding it takes.
The problem with Iron Man the game is that while not a terrible game
it is a terrible license. The glee which can be obtained from wanton
killing slowly diminishes over time till all that’s left is a shallow
license which had such potential. While not worth a full price
purchase, fans of the film and comic are advised to rent it first.
Developer: SEGA| Publisher: SEGA | Format: DS
Reviewer: Craig Jay Gallagher
and a bit bland the title Brain Assist informers gamers of what type
game they’re getting. While the translated text may at times be side
splitting hilarious the game never promises to help with grammar, what
it does hope to help improve is your usage of your “right brain”.
What your right brain controls is a number of functions including your
artistic abilities and your imagination.
Reviewer: Craig Jay GallagherWhile grammatically incorrect
The gameplay is pretty simple. You take a number of tests which
through completion allegedly help improve your mental power, though no
matter how much I try telekinesis is still not a viable option. There
games are a series of mini games including Quick Numbers, Match Games
and colour based games.
To be honest these can’t even be classed as real games, they’re more
mental diagnostics which kill some time but aren’t exactly challenging.
Spot the Difference is the most basic of game types. Two pictures
appear on-screen and you must decide if it is identical or not. As the
game gets on these differences grow more and more difficult to find and
you soon find that time either runs out or you keep picking the wrong
After completing all the mini games a few times your ready to
evaluate just how capable your brain is. The tests are two fold, each
featuring four games which you must complete. There are about ten
problems contained in each of the games which must be completed. As is
par on course for these games, the difficulty level quickly rises.
While far from a bad title Brain Assist is just a little too much of
a backward step from a number of superior brain training titles already
on release. As a starting point it is worth picking up and playing
through till you move on to something a little more substantial.
Citizengame.co.uk, although it has a UK web address, is a newly launched Irish games podcast. The first edition, a ‘pilotcast’, was released on March 3 and has been so-far followed by three more shows.
In the podcasts presenters cover computer games news and talk about the latest games. The podcasts in MP3 – which vary from an hour to an hour and 25mins – can be downloaded in from citizengame.co.uk.
Reviewer: Craig J Gallagher
The most important aspect of any Sonic game has always been speed,
games generally involve our beloved blue hedgehog racing through level
after level collecting rings before the timer runs out. The inevitable
spin off game was always going to be a racing game, which we got a few
years back on the GameCube in the form of Sonic Riders. It was an
entertaining romp, which while relatively short lived provided ample
fun. Now on the Wii comes the long awaited sequel, Sonic Riders: Zero
There are a number of different modes to choose from once the game
boots up. The main mode, is off course Story. In it you must stop a
horde of evil robots from claiming a meteorite which attracts the
robots making them homicidal killing machines. Normal Race offers up
two choice modes, free race in which you can play with up to four
friends on any of the tracks you have unlocked and Time Attack in which
you must race against the clock and use your best times on a world
leader board. You can download other racers speeds and then try and
beat it, as they can do with your times.
The rest of the modes are Survival and Battle, which are somewhat
self explanatory. Up to four players can play each mode which is a god
send due to the rather lack struck AI evident in the game. It’s a shame
that there is no online mode bar the uploading of high scores and
downloading of other players “ghosts”. A true online mode would have
been a god send due to the fact that the game lends its self so well to
When viewing Sonic Riders the only real comparable game is Mario
Kart. Both feature seasoned fan favourites in a genre unfamiliar to
themselves. Unlike Mario Kart, Sonic Riders lack the immense likability
and fun though the pick up and play mentality of the game more than
makes up for this. The main drawback to the game, is that for a game
based upon speed Sonic Riders lacks a true sense of speed and at times
For a Sonic game, Zero Gravity is a disappointment, it lacks the
likability of a classic Sonic title. But taken as a multiplayer Wii
game, it’s an enjoyable play which guarantees repeat gaming visits due
to the immensely easy pick up and play aspects. While far from a
classic it remains an above average title which lends its self
perfectly to multiplayer.
Telekinesys Research Limited, the Dublin-based games middleware firm known as Havok, is being sued by a design agency that helped created their brand. According to the Sunday Business Post, the branding work for Havok by Dublin design company, Creative Inc, had appeared in a marketing magazine article as a case study.
Emmy-winning Havok then wrote to Creative Inc requesting them to cease linking it self to the games firm. But Creative are now taking action claiming they had an agreement to use work in case studies. The case was mentioned as a motion for entry in the commercial section of the High Court at the Four Courts in Dublin last week.
Havok, based in the Digital Hub in Dublin’s Liberties, was bought by chipmaker Intel late last year. It is best known for its physics software that helps games developers concentrate on other aspects of games creation, but has expanded to areas such as animation.
As result of the Intel buyout, Havok are to release a free non-commercial version of their Havok Complete product for PC from this May. The move is aimed at independent games developers and enthusiasts, as well as academic institutions with games courses.
According to the company its products are used in over 200 “AAA games” and as well as being used in well over 90 titles which are due to be released this year. There include Halo 3, Assassin’s Creed, and Guitar Hero
III, as well as the upcoming Alan Wake, Indiana Jones, and Starcraft II. The middleware maker lists many more on its website, Havok.com.
A deal with Sony before the PlayStation 3 release also saw a version of the Havok product bundled with development hardware kits for the console.
MORE: Legal dispute between Havok and design agency (the Sunday Business Post, March 16, 2008)
Last week, most of the major players of the video game industry
congregated in a giant conference centre just outside Tokyo to outline
their plans for the future. Yesterday marked the final day of the
event, and here is a recap of what you may have missed.
Being on Japanese soil, much of the wares on display were aimed at the
local market. Microsoft, who haven’t enjoyed the same success in Japan
as they have in other territories, showcased many games that were
designed to appeal to the Japanese gamer. They devoted a large section
of their floorspace to a very Japanese-style theatre for the extremely
graphic Ninja Gaiden II – and it proved a big hit with the locals, with
queues to watch the trailer in such settings stretching to over an hour.
Their Xbox Live Arcade platform received a shot in the arm with
announcement that shoot-em-ups Rez and Ikaruga were bound for the
online-gaming service. Virtua Fighter 5, Devil May Cry 4 and the latest
installment in the Winning Eleven series also proved popular on the
event floor. Halo 3 didn’t command the attention of gamers as it does
outside Japan, however.
Going into the conference, Sony had much to prove with regards to their
under-performing Playstation platforms. With games like Talkman Travel
and MyStylist and the Japanese-only TV tuner, Sony seem keen to widen
the audience of the beleaguered handheld – though there was also an
abundance of established franchises on display, including Metal Gear,
Final Fantasy, Star Ocean and Silent Hill.
Playstation 3 owners received welcome news that a new Dualshock – the
Dualshock 3 – will be coming to gamers’ hands within the year in Japan,
and early next year for those in other territories. The joypad will
also boast motion-sensing controls like the current SIXAXIS, but it is
unknown if it will replace it entirely.
On the software front, Metal Gear Solid 4 was undoubtedly the game of
the show. With queues to play the game stretching for over 4 hours at
peak times, the demand was clearly high. A new trailer was unveiled,
and Metal Gear Online was also showcased.
At Sony’s booth, The Eye of Judgement and Gran Turismo 5 Prologue
garnered much attention – but there was quite an array of software on
display. Games from established series like Time Crisis 4 (complete
with a new, complicated Guncon controller), Devil May Cry 4, Yakuza 3
sat beside some innovative-looking titles like the afformentioned Eye
of Judgement, LittleBigPlanet and Echochrome. Judging by such titles,
Sony should be in better shape going into next year’s show than they
With Nintendo absent from proceedings, third parties were left to pick
up the baton. For the Wii, Capcom dedicated much space to
platform-exclusive Resident Evil: Umbrella Chronicles, but outside that
there were very little of note for owners of the innovative console.
Nintendo DS owners were also left largely disappointed, with a large
proportion of the games on show likely to never see light of day
outside of Japan.
Dublin games middleware company Havok is to be taken over by chip manufacturer Intel.
The deal will see the company that grew out of Trinity College become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Intel.
Havok’s software tools have been used on games such as BioShock,
Harry Potter, Half Life 2, MotorStorm, and Second Life, and upcoming
titles such as Halo 3, Alan Wake, and Indiana Jones (pictured above).
FULL STORY: Dublin gaming firm snapped up by Intel