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Castlevania - Dawn of Sorrow (Nintendo DS)
Castlevania - Dawn of Sorrow (Nintendo DS)
Offered by 666 Media
Price: 16.95

23 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a new castlevania, 10 Aug 2005
Earlier this year we had an opportunity to play through a short amount of what's to be Castlevania DS, and we experienced the direction that the development team's going with the project. The game made another showing at E3, and it's coming along strong, even though, honestly, not much has changed from the first time we played it beyond a tighter presentation using a newer anime-inspired art style for the cutscenes, as well as a new subtitle: Dawn of Sorrow. It's playing off the D and S, you see.
The gameplay is very similar to what the team created for the last 2D Castlevania game, Harmony of Dissonance. Instead of going for a 3D presentation, the Castlevania team is instead playing the strengths of the Nintendo DS system's 2D capabilities for Dawn of Sorrow. The action features a lot of rather nifty special effects using the Nintendo DS's hardware, including sprite techniques that enable the developers to create some rather massive creatures for the action.
Though the adventure is "just" an update to a Game Boy Advance title, the development team are putting a bit of effort into utilizing the Nintendo DS system's dual screen function. The upper screen will be used for a display of the character's skills and traits, but it can also be switched to an on-screen map to keep track of where you are and where you've been in Dracula's castle. The touch panel will be employed as a control mechanism to chisel away at ice blocks blocking your way to create staircases and other platforms, and it also comes into use when banishing boss characters by drawing specific symbols on the touch-sensitive screen.
The newest addition to the presentation is the ability to draw your own sketch for each of the game profiles in Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow. The creator jokingly spotlighted this feature in his presentation, but he claims that the customization feature makes the game feel more personal to the player.
Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow is definitely one of the most anticipated games for the Nintendo DS, and it didn't disappoint players at the Electronic Entertainment Expo. It's a stunning follow-up to the 2D side of the Castlevania series, and we can't wait to finally get a chance to cozy up to the game without the hustle and bustle of the convention atmosphere.

Killer 7 (GameCube)
Killer 7 (GameCube)

20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A game that's a psychotic mind trip., 11 July 2005
This review is from: Killer 7 (GameCube) (Video Game)
After years in development with multiple delays Capcom's eagerly awaited Killer 7 arrives. In the shadow of Resident Evil 4 and the Viewtiful Joe, Killer 7 was the most unique title out of the elusive Gamecube five. After release date change and pushback Killer 7 now arrives on the PS2 with a variety of changes from the original build.
The main concept is the same, you play as an assassin called "Smith" with seven distinct multiple personalities. Each of the "Smith" personalities are unique. Different weapons, skills and so forth. Kaede, the girl with the blood soaked dress, is skilled with long range shooting since she has a gun with a scope. Con is blind, but he can out run anything. Mask de Smith dons a wrestling mask and has a powerful shot that can blow up walls. Each different personality can be switched on the fly by entering the new choice in the main menu. Once you select a new personality a cool effect plays where your current character explodes into a sea of red balls and then comes together as the new character happens. Changing characters serves two purposes. First you'll need to alter characters to solve puzzles and access new areas. Secondly, since each character has a unique style of attacking switching characters is like switching weapons. If you want a powerful slow shot you want to change into Dan because he carries a magnum or Coyote with his custom revolver. Con specializes in riddling enemies with bullets, while Mask holds a single shot grenade gun.
Killer 7 has it's fair share of shooting, but it's quite different from anything in any other game. You can't actually see the elusive Heaven's Smile cult that you're battling against. Instead you'll have to keenly listen for their maniac laugh, hold out your gun by pressing R and then scan the area by pressing down L. Your average cult monster doesn't shoot back. In a creepy zombie style the fanged entity runs towards you and will explode on contact. When you're running around on screen they act like moving land minds. Once locked on you can shoot them blindly, where a couple of shots will send one to the abyss. Or if you're patient and lock on for a longer time you'll spot a weak point. Shooting the weak point instantly kills the cult member.
If you think how you attack is a bit unusual wait until you see how gameplay is set up. There is no free running around or random exploration in Killer 7. Instead you hold the A button down to run forwards until you reach a fork in the road or a door to enter. At this point a menu pops up and you can select where you want to run by picking a direction then pushing A. Some people have made the analogy of calling it an "on rails" game, which isn't kind of the truth. Unlike "rail" games you're not forced to go forward, pressing B allows you to do a 180 turn at any time and you can alter the speed at which you move. Killer 7 also expects gamers to run backwards and not merely press forward to the next area. Puzzles are adventure styled where you item fetch or at times have to intelligently deduce an answer. The forced movement does ease the pain of random interaction in adventure games. Since there is a limited amount of things you can interact with, gamers already have a clearer idea of how to solve puzzles.
Speaking of puzzles Killer 7 has plenty of them. The item fetching puzzles aren't a real challenge, but there are some puzzles that will make you think. Clues on how to solve them are given in mysterious words by red spandex Iwazaru's. Some of the puzzles play on the game's psychotic setting to confuse the actual player. Even the boss battles are puzzles of their own. Instead of actively running and dodging, boss battles have more creative solutions to them. One boss has a single weak point, an exposed brain. It's simply seen, but how do you shoot the back of it's head? We won't ruin the answer, but you really have to pay attention to the pattern and if you watch closely you can break it for a clean head shot.
Killer 7's presentation is nothing short of phenomenal. The surreal cel shaded style looks great. It allows easy blending of obscure objects and makes hallways look endless. Killer 7 really does look like a living comic book, something few games have attempted. The frame rate in Killer 7 never drops another achievement by the Capcom team. The voice acting fits the game, but some people are bound to be frustrated by it. The robotic sounding voices are creepy, but are so distorted that gamers may need to hear the same thing a couple of times before understanding the clue. Killer 7 is bereft of an over arching sound track. Background music fades in and out, which is for the better since there are so many audio cues to pay attention to. A chime plays when you're around something related to a puzzle and you need to be alert to hear for Heaven's Smile members.
The ride of Killer 7 can easily last for over fifteen hours, with a new mode unlocked upon completion. Gamers eager for something different and darker will eat Killer 7 up. Whereas some gamers will absolutely loathe the game because it takes time to get into and time to relearn controls. Although everyone into horror games like the Silent Hill and Resident Evil should play Killer 7 at the very least. It's innovation deserves a trial play, just give it time and it will grow on you.

WarioWare Twisted! (GBA)
WarioWare Twisted! (GBA)

8 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Twisted but in a good way, 1 July 2005
If you havent played Wario ware before it basicly random mini games throwen at you one after another, the games only last about 5 seconds each and when you think about it they are really simple too but but this much crazyness throwen at you without time to think makes the game really tricky.
Most of the games in twisted are based around a motion sensor e.g one game you have a plate with dirt on it and a cloth in the middle by turning the gameboy 360 the plate revolves around cleaning it, flick food from your spoon in to someones mouth and steerin a car.
The object of the game is to compleate as many mini games as possible to get the highest score there is a boss to finnish off every now and then but what makes the game hard is the further you go the faster the games get and eventually your gonna die.
The game is not that long but it has great replay value and that is what the game has been designed around it will keep you going for ages.

Star Fox Assault (GameCube)
Star Fox Assault (GameCube)

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excelent game a bit short though, 30 Jun 2005
after reading severial reviews that complained about bad graphics and bad controll i started loosing hope for star fox assult but i liked the previous ones so i gave it a go.
star fox offers a few different game play experences firstly on rails shooting stages in your airwing, onfoot sections that were much better than i expected (when done with a twin analogue set up)and land vechele stages.
The airwing stages are just the same as all the other games the camera travils down a route and you blast anything that gets in your way with bombs and lazers and at the end of the stage you have a boss battle. The onfoot sections were good also you have a set up that makes it play like a first person shooter its really easy to controll the only problem with on foot sections is you cant tell exactly where enimys are as there are several floors to these stages and you only have a 2d map so you might think a bad guy is right next to you but they are really 500 feet and 4 floors above you but you can also jump in to landmasters and airwings on these missions e.g you land at a base where you have to blow up pods inside but a air battle is going on outside you you run around blowing up the pods and when the meter at the top of the screen starts filling up your friends are struggling so you quickly jump in the airwing get out side and shoot down the badguys then return to your mission.
i was quite supprised that the graphics looked good i dont see what the problem is it has a good frame rate lots of action on screen at one time and the graphics although not resident evil 4 standard were very good and didnt deserve the bad press the gameplay and controlls were also good and enjoyable the only thing letting this game down was the length of it and the fact that you could not choose a different route like in the previous games the levels just come at you one by one.
the multi player is quite special though you have massive arena's where you can choose what guns you want and if you want either airwings or landmasters or both my faveriout is going in to the arena with just sniper rifels great fun.

No Title Available

26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars far more than a tamagotchi, 27 Jun 2005
I had this game imported from Japan and it arrived a day after release (22nd April), so I've had a while to play on it and the experience is quite unlike any other! Forget what people say about this being like a tamagotchi, this game is much more advanced than that, essentially this game is like having one of those extremely expensive sony aibo dogs for only a tiny fraction of the cost.
The game works off the internal clock of the DS, and therefore there are limits to how much you can do with the dog each day; so you can forget staying up all night trying to teach the dog all the tricks in the book! This is a game, which like Animal Crossing is meant to be played ad infinitum, i.e. a little bit each day. And there is always something for you to do, be it: teaching the dog tricks; taking it for a walk; entering it into one of the three different competition; collecting all the in-game items (like new music and toys); feeding and washing it, or just playing catch. This game is seriously fun.
Lets talk a little about the graphics now. I know none of you bought the DS for graphics, but let me tell you this game is one helluva looker! I've seen graphics on the gamecube look worse than this, and that is a complement! It makes anything on the N64 look like a Nes! How can it be that good you may ask? Because the designers have streamlined the gaming world and made all the environments simple but stylish. If you look through the windows of your house you'll see mountains that look so good they're almost certainly pre-rendered. What the designers have really focused on is the dogs, and I would argue that most of the DS's graphical power goes into making the dogs look so sublime. They really are lovely and rounded, and not at all like the blocky polygons seen on the N64. They animate realisticly too; I've owned many dogs in my life, and to see their movement mimicked in this way is a joy to behold.
The sound is pretty decent, and I can't think of anything that made me think, 'woah that was crap'. Inside you're room you can hear noises of birds and traffic, as well as your dog messing about . The music so far is pleasant and I don't think it'll get annoying anytime soon; if it does there seems to be the ability to unlock new tunes, and besides you can probably just switch the music off if it starts to grate.
All in all this game is incredible unique. The interaction with the dogs is something which you simply have to experience first hand: saying a command to your dog which he then carries out is guaranteed to have you grinning from ear to ear and wanting to show him off to all your friends and relatives! This game is a must buy! when the game is released in the uk there are likly to be 3 versions like japan had and the us will have although the type of dogs for the uk version has not been announced. This is a defenet must have the most popular magazine in japan rated it as 40/40 giving only a small handfull of games received this score.

Pac Pix (Nintendo DS)
Pac Pix (Nintendo DS)
Offered by clickforgamesltd
Price: 6.50

8 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars so pac man is dead?, 27 Jun 2005
This review is from: Pac Pix (Nintendo DS) (Video Game)
If you thought Pac-Man was dead and so 15 years ago, you better think again, because he is back with more interactivity then ever before!
Grabbing your handy stylus (your main object of beating this game), you sketch your way through 12 stages (almost 60 levels... and even more when you beat the first book) of monster eating, item collecting, arrow shooting, bomb exploding, and pac-man sketching action.
With most of the action going on at the bottom of the screen, don't take your eyes of the top one. At the top, their are fruits (item road), monsters and extra lives (item road) to be collected. Either big or small your pac-man can gobble up the competition by you drawing a pac-man, any size.
Do you want to fire at that monster floating in a bubble at the top of the screen? Then quickly sketch an arrow and it will fire up at the top screen and will go which way you angled it at.
Is that annoying monster with a block on his head getting on your nerves? Then draw a circle, attach a line by drawing it on the circle and connect it to a flame. Literally blowing the hell out the monster's armor, it is now your chance to gobble the lil' freak up (I don't know about Pinky, they are pretty cute monsters)
Many different monsters have different attitudes. For example, Pinky will try to get away from you with caution, Nevervous Pete (or whatever the hell his name was) runs like hell to get away and you have to catch him, and the monsters with shells on the front of them, which you have to get behind them to eat em' up (trying to eat them from the front causes you to bounce back, if you bounce back 3 consecutive times, your pac man gets flung off the screen/killed).
The game offers so much interactivity it is almost nuts. For example, interactivity shines as you get to draw the arrows and try and deflect them off mirriors. Probably the only downside to this game was that there wasn't any multi-player. I mean with Pac-man games they always throw in something involving multi-player, but for this one, I guess not.
Another cool thing about this game is the Sketchbook practice. You can practice drawing your arrows, pac-man and bombs and even make other things spring to life, such as drawing a cloud, it starts to rain.... drawing a side-ways 8 turns it into a butterfly and it continues to fly all the way to the top of the screen). I have noticed most of the Nintendo DS games are based on high-scores , but thats ok for this game, because it is a must have for your DS collection and for all out sketch crazy, monster eating action!

Another Code: Two Memories (Nintendo DS)
Another Code: Two Memories (Nintendo DS)
Offered by CD DIXIE
Price: 29.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars point and click adventures return, 26 Jun 2005
While researching human memory for the government's secret lab, scientists Richard and Sayoko Robbins suddenly disappear and are presumed dead. Ten years later, their daughter, Ashley, receives a letter from Richard, telling her that he is still alive and sequestered in a lab on Blood Edward Island. Ashley traces the letter to the island to find the truth behind her parents' mysterious disappearance. Once there, she discovers that her parents had been working on a memory-generating computer called Trace, but the connection between Trace and their disappearance remains unclear. While searching for Richard, Ashley befriends a ghost named D, who is looking for answers of his own. Having lost all his memories and any recollection of his death, D is destined to remain in limbo and wander the island until he recovers them.
Together, they set off to find the truth of their pasts.
Another code is controlled by stylus the top screen displays a top down view while the bottom shows a first person view of items ashley will walk past by pointing with the stylus you bring up a more detailed screen and inspect items using the touch screen.The touch screen also comes into play when solving puzzles. For example, Ashley needs to get through a cemetery and the only way to pass is to lift a rock blocking the only way out. But the rock can only be moved a specific way, and it's up to the player to figure out how to nudge that boulder out of the hole in the wall.
the graphics are impressive with nice art work combined with a 3d and 2d view make this a must have purchase for any one that likes adventure games.
the only real downside to the game is the length a good player will finnish the game in 5-6 hours about 10-11 if you want to find all the hidden cards throughout the game but while it lasts its great.

Asphalt Urban GT (Nintendo DS)
Asphalt Urban GT (Nintendo DS)
Offered by Renaissance
Price: 9.95

7 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars is has the speed and graphics but what about the controll, 4 Feb 2005
asphalt urban follows in the footsteaps of games like burnout this has dispensed with traditions like avoiding danger.instead you are incouraged to drive on the wrong side and squeeze past lorries.this builds up your boost meter and then pressing the A button sends your car careering along the track.
the graphics look great it certanly has the look its very fast and hase a smoth frame rate the main problem is with the handling though many of the larger cars you will be crashing in to the corners alot.

Wario Ware: Touched! (Nintendo DS)
Wario Ware: Touched! (Nintendo DS)
Offered by CD DIXIE
Price: 19.95

14 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars slice,sail,light,reel - mini game mayhem, 4 Feb 2005
Wario ware is the most original game in years there is simply nothing else like it this time it returnes to the ds and uses the touch screen and microphone to compleate the mini-games.
Wario ware consists of a few humdred mini-games that only last a few seconds each the games are real easy but it puts you under presure by throwing the games at you randomly and only giving a couple of seconds to figure out what the hell is going on and to react.The mini games consist of slicing vegtables,turing taps,lighting candils, sailing boats(by blowing in the microphone),reeling in fish etc and it really makes the best handheld game as you can play it for a few mineuts then put it down. a lot of people will look at the basic graphics and not get the game based on that but its not supposed to have good graphics its meant to have excelent game play and it does.Wario is best in multi player though and only needing one cartridge this is the ultimate party game and will have you and your mates in stiches and it will last forever.
i highly recomend people buying the ds to try this game it really is excelent and there is no way you will regret it also look out for wario ware twised that comes out on gba(also playes on ds) all the mini games are based around a rotation sensor in the cartridge so you need to twist the gbs/ds to compleate mini games.

Donkey Kong Jungle Beat - Includes Bongos (GameCube)
Donkey Kong Jungle Beat - Includes Bongos (GameCube)

21 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars at last a return for 2d platforming, 4 Feb 2005
donkey kong jungle beat is a classic style 2d platformer that is controlled with the free bongos you will get in the package.
to controll the game you need to master a few simple controlls wack the right drum to move right(the faster you drum the faster dk goes)left drum left,both together to jump and clap to grab bananas and stun enimeys how ever its not that simple! there will be obsticales in your way and loads of enimys to conker e.g a enimey is siting in the tree throwing coconuts at you so to defeat him you wait for him to throw a coconut then clap you hands the coconut will change direction then wack both drums to jump and punch the coconut back at him by wacking the right drum. Some levels you ride a goat thing where you have to wack the right drum to move faster jumping over obsticals whilst collecting banannas whilst being chased by a big monster the controlls work really welland makes a change from usall conrtoll methods. Each world is broken up in to 2 levels then a boss fight at the end, the boss fights are quite cool you first have to figure out how to defend your self against him then you can reply and deliver some damage of your own,to deliver damage you punch the boss by wacking left,right etc the faster you wack the more punches you deliver.
i recomend this game to anyone that likes retro style 2d platforming,something original,anyone that already has some bongos and to anyone who knows what a good game is 30 and includes bongos you cant go wrong

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