Profile for Mark Palfreeman > Reviews

Personal Profile

Content by Mark Palfreeman
Top Reviewer Ranking: 1,375,416
Helpful Votes: 51

Learn more about Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
Mark Palfreeman (Bradford)

Show:  
Page: 1 | 2
pixel
Queen
Queen
Offered by Logi-Link
Price: 13.62

4.0 out of 5 stars Raw Masterpiece, 3 April 2010
This review is from: Queen (Audio CD)
For those of you wishing to here the very best of Queen, this is not the album with which to do it. Their career spanned three decades and the music they produced reflected that. This however is a delight to fans of Queen or glam rock. The tracks have a raw quality that highlighted the individual quality of the band members and their instruments, and the way Queen composed some wonderful music. The opening track 'Keep Yourself Alive' is a strange omission from many of the greatest hits, meaning it is not necessarily as well known as it should be, but it provides an energy of an early rock band that continues throughout this album. At the end of the disc is an instrumental version of Seven Seas of Rhye, and offers a taste of the genius that is to come.


Just Cause 2 Limited Edition (Xbox 360)
Just Cause 2 Limited Edition (Xbox 360)

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Chaotic Beauty, 30 Mar 2010
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
An epic open world and carefully constructed story make this game a wonderful experience to play.
I've had this game nearly a week and have hardly begun the missions simply because exploration is fantastic. An open world has been created with a variety of climates, people, weapons and vehicles all done with immaculate detail. Flying over the island is a genuinely jaw-dropping experience.

The premise of the game is that you are a freelance fighter aiding the revolutionaries on this island. You earn respect and money through causing chaos and completing missions as you align yourself with various different factions. For budding Che Guevaras it is an ideal setting.

The action itself is fun to play out and to watch. While those used to first person shooters such as Call of Duty may get frustrated by the targeting system, it is a game designed for quick chaotic action, not subtle warfare. That said, you are allowed free reign in the way in which you choose to accomplish your mission. You could attempt a stealthy incursion or level a command centre with a helicopter...whatever your mood takes you.

For those interested in open world games I'm going to say that this is the most impressively designed world there is out there to explore, with a variety of things to do aside from the basic story missions. And for everyone else it is simply very fun to blow things up, grapple onto aeroplanes and generally cause a lot of chaos.


The Political Machine 2008 (PC CD)
The Political Machine 2008 (PC CD)
Offered by games-wizard
Price: 0.99

3.0 out of 5 stars A fun quick intro to american politics, 16 Mar 2010
= Fun:3.0 out of 5 stars 
Politics is a difficult subject to convert into a game scenario, but this game does a good job of creating an interest and playable simulation of a US Presidential election.

Featuring favourite characters, including the opportunity to download those from history or fiction, the game spans the 42 week run up to the US Election. 'Kriss-Crossing' the US states, you will have to build your reputation and develop your platform, using aids such as local media and national TV interviews.

The game has depth, but has a simple approach to implementing a campaign, making the game much easier, and more enjoyable to simply pick up and play. It is certainly a game for those who have an interest in politics, but don't necessarily want to spend days altering sliders to position themselves on an issue.

The format does however somewhat limit replay value. There are a few different ways to change the arena in which you are being elected, or to alter the candidate you are playing as/against forcing you into different tactical approaches, but essentially you are still doing very similar things towards that goal.
That said, the ease and speed with which the game can be played gives it more replay value than other simulations of this genre.

Overall I would recommend this game to those interested in the topic. It's not going to excite those who love command and conquer but if you are looking for a fun political/election simulation it certainly does its job.


Ashes Cricket 09 (Xbox 360)
Ashes Cricket 09 (Xbox 360)
Offered by findprice
Price: 16.46

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One of the best cricket games out there, 16 Mar 2010
= Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars 
Cricket is understandably a difficult sport to convert to a console atmosphere based on quick results and short attention spans. However, within those confines Ashes 2009 doesn't do a bad attempt.

Batting is simple, but very effective, allowing a wide range of movements and shots around a full 360 degree axis. The loft function also allows for decent shots to be played over the outfield, and it seems a fairly realistic combination of shot timing and selection that makes for wickets.
Bowling is again simple with the typical place and drop bowl system, accompanied nicely with an array of bowling types from cutters to swingers that can genuinely have an effect against batsman and offer the opportunity to make the most of bowlers.

The game takes into account the confidence of batters and bowlers when playing shots or bowling, both of which are effected by outcomes such as boundaries, played and missed, mis-timed shots etc... At least in longer forms of the game it requires patience as would real test cricket.

The fielding is decidedly suspect and becomes somewhat comical as fielders trot to the boundary slowly or bowlers look the wrong way to receive a throw. But as this is the same for both sides it does little to diminish enjoyment, simply takes something from the realism of the game.

All the test and the major one day international sides are available to play, with the option to edit players abilities and add a small selection of created players to play with. It offers players the opportunity to update squads, although it is annoyingly not possible to edit either Australian or English squads as they are both licensed.

As seems to be the case with most cricket games, playing against the computer can be difficult and at times tedious, but the game has a simulation mode to 'fast forward' where necessary. There is however stadiums to unlock and awards allocated which make such a challenge more rewarding.
Online can be difficult because of the time it takes to complete a game, but offers much again for those with patience. But even in the test arena it can at times be a little easy to start whacking the ball to all corners of the ground.

For someone who understands the pace of cricket, and enjoys the sport I would recommend this game. It may not be perfect, but it is very playable.


Batman: Arkham Asylum (Xbox 360)
Batman: Arkham Asylum (Xbox 360)
Offered by Game Trade Online
Price: 12.49

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully dark Batman game, 1 Feb 2010
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
I've never been a huge comic book or superhero fan, before getting this game I'd never seen any of the batman films but was recommended the game by a friend. But subsequently have been hooked on the Gotham universe thanks to this game.

The release of Batman Begins and then The Dark Knight seems to have given Batman a much more appropriate darkness and this game has a similar feel. It is a compelling storyline with some great acting, a great setting and generally fantastic graphics. There is a good range of characters, and includes references to many of Batmans most popular foes.
The controls are simple to use and make fighting scenes are a lot of fun and easily impressive! But there is also a significant place for the use of stealth and gadgetry offering nice variety.

The only weaknesses in the game is that some of the scenes can feel repetitive with common tactics on defeating bosses, although this doesn't necessarily make them any less fulfilling to complete.

Overall the game is one of the best I've played and despite completing it once has made me go through it all again and again and still I'm not tired of it. Definately worth getting whether you're a fan of the Dark Knight or not.


The Cosmos Rocks
The Cosmos Rocks
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: 4.12

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Queen, but it works, 5 Oct 2008
This review is from: The Cosmos Rocks (Audio CD)
For anyone buying this album expecting a Queen album then it is likely you will be disappointed. The sound offered differs quite a bit from that we have begun to associate with the band. That was inevitable bearing in mind the influence Deacon and Mercury had in songwriting and possibly even due to the way music has changed in the past 16 years. But that doesn't mean that the album isn't a good listen.

Ignoring the comparisons, this album offers some wonderful riffs and some great tracks. Rodgers voice adds a soulful quality to the tracks, and with it substantial feeling. Obviously it isn't Mercury, but it offers as much as it lacks.
There is a range of material including different styles and if certainly has its merits. There is a sense that all three musicians are a little restrained and that lack of stretching themselves is what makes the album pleasant rather than brilliant.

As an album in its own right I would recommend it to anyone, its good to listen to and features some very strong tracks musically. For a Queen fan looking to re-ignite the old days or someone wishing to get a sense of what Queen were then this album isn't suitable. But for a fan who still wants to hear a Brian May riff, and a combination of 70's legends then this is a perfect opportunity.


Graceland (Remastered And Expanded)
Graceland (Remastered And Expanded)
Offered by skyvo-direct
Price: 13.87

9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Africa meets the world, 6 Nov 2006
There is something about this album that is exceptionally compelling. Every drum beat makes you want to tap your feet, every sound and every rhythm feels like it belongs and the overall result is musically so well constructed. Then lay on top of that Simon's lyrics, which are in this album's case both funny and incisive and you have one of the best albums ever produced.

It doesn't matter what your music taste. This album will capture you with its enthusiasm and rhythms.


Kind Of Blue
Kind Of Blue
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: 5.75

4 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Takes you to another place!, 6 Nov 2006
This review is from: Kind Of Blue (Audio CD)
I'd obviously heard of Miles Davis, but had a naive attitude that all jazz was the same no matter who played it. After seeing this album on a few lists recommending giving it a listen I succumbed to buying it. I have to admit that I love jazz and the way it can mentally just take you away from the earth for a while. And this album is exactly like that. It features some of the best musicians of any era playing some wonderfully constructed music. And I would say that no matter who you are then there is something here to enjoy. If nothing else then revel in the abilities of the musicians on offer.

But if you are a fan of this type of music then this album will take you away to a different place. It really is powerful music, and I would say is jazz at its best!

If you're not a big jazz fan then you won't get quite as much out of it, and if you don't like jazz at all then don't even consider buying it. But I would recommend everyone listen to it at least once in their life to enjoy what music and life was like in the 1950's and to experience some of the talent that came out of places like New Orleans, and more importantly how wonderful jazz can be and the things it can do to your senses when it is done well.


Made In Heaven
Made In Heaven
Offered by DVD Overstocks
Price: 4.57

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Heaven Sent, 5 Sep 2006
This review is from: Made In Heaven (Audio CD)
It is no secret the significance of Made In Heaven for Queen fans. The poignancy of the title, artwork and music of this album creates a powerful peice of work for the Queen fans. And undoubtedly without these circumstances the album would not have been as significant.

But at the same time, the amount talked about 'an album from beyond the grave', occasionally detracts from an album that features several of Queen's finest peices of music.

For those who enjoyed glamrock see earlier Queen work (1970's) for Queen as rockers (1980's), but while this album isn't necessarily classic Queen, it was yet another different style, in fitting with the release period.

Too Much Love Will Kill You is a ballad that sits with the best love songs of all time. Making the most of the power and range of Freddie's vocals, it is very much a 90's love song. Heaven For Everyone and Let Me Live feature great harmonies, and there are some quite emotive and scenic music in A Winter's Tale and Its A Beautiful Day.

For a Queen fan I would suggest buying it. While it is a different sound for a different period, it still maintains Freddies amazing vocals, great guitar riffs and great drum work.

For everyone else it is a good album, with four or five very nice tracks. But if you own the Platinum Trilogy then you probably have those tracks on Greatest Hits III.


Surprise
Surprise
Offered by westworld-
Price: 10.00

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A 'listen again' album, 5 Sep 2006
This review is from: Surprise (Audio CD)
A hugely anticipated peice of work by his fans, Outrageous didn't disappoint. It is quite a distance from his country origins, but has the poetic hallmark of a Paul Simon album. The influence of Brian Eno is clear, and adds a texture to Simon's work that should appeal to a new generation of audience.

If you enjoy more of Paul's work then you should enjoy this cd. But if you are simply a fan of Graceland, or Simon & Garfunkel then Outrageous will give you something radically different (but not necessarily bad!).

But it is a cd that you will get more out of each time you listen to it. Some of the tunes I found annoying the first couple of times I listened to it, but now I find myself whistling them all the time. And as usual with Simon the lyrics are strikingly meaningful.


Page: 1 | 2