Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Lack of Reviews

I've been playing TMNT (360) for achievement points, and MLB 2K7 (360), and that's why I have only reviewed a few games this month.

My next review will be: Rayman Raving Rabbids and/or Pokemon Diamond


Game Review ( iQuiz - iPod Video )

Graphics: 3/5 Nice and colorful, but not much to speak of. They look okay, but nothing amazing.

Sound: 1.5/5 The same repeating song in the background is about 98% of what you'll hear.

Control: 4/5 Simple as it gets. Anyone can control this game.

Fun: 3.75/5 This game is only 99 cents, but for good reason. When you do the quiz for the music on your iPod, it only does about 5-10 different bands, even if you have about 1000+ songs, and several different artists. Why it does this, I don't know, but it's pretty stupid. The music, movie, and TV trivia is okay, but hard, and it seems the questions are for girls, since the shows are mostly "girl shows". But for 99 cents, you can't really say no. You can even create your own quizzes, too.


The number one thing I want to know: Why do they sometimes ask a question like "What artist's album cover is this?" when it says the band's name in big bold letters on it.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Game Review ( Halo 2 - Xbox )

Graphics: 5/5 Although somewhat dated now, for a game that came out in 2004, these graphics are awesome. The enviroments don't look great, but hey, it's an Xbox game, not a 360 game. Still, the character models look great, and the overall experience is heightened thanks to the graphics.

Sound: 5/5 Phenomenal! Absolutely everything sounds fantastic - not a flaw here. The guns, the explosions, the vehicles, all perfect.

Control: 4.5/5 There is definitely a learning curve. The vehicles control ( to me ) very awkwardly, and the semi-auto aim gives noobs the ability to own even the best Halo players, but the control couldn't have been much better.

Fun: 4.5/5 The story sucks, so I won't bother with that, but the online play is great. A lot of players leave games for no apparent reason, though, which is frustrating, but it's a good experience - at times. Halo 2 is 80% luck. Whoever can get to the sniper first, for example, will have a huge advantage - a one to two shot kill depending on the location of the shot - and it's really annoying. So basically, if you're lucky enough to get one of the good weapons lying around, nice job, because you're likely to rape before you're shot from behind, which happens at least 75% of the time. So although Halo 2 is a good online experience, it's also a frustrating one, ultimately resulting in me giving this game a 4.5 and no higher. Everything else is great - graphics, sound, and control, but the unfair weapon advantage is annoying. At least you'll never get bored - since there are several game modes and maps to choose from. You can also start parties in which you can invite friends, and customize your character. Halo 2 should definitely be experienced by any Xbox or Xbox 360 owner. ( However be warned 360 owners, when playing on the 360, you will see in about 25% of the games you play a "fog". It's a slight masking over the map and it looks like you're playing in fog. It's very annoying and will likely result in deaths. Also, in the corner, you will see Xbox Live Sign-In, which is just as stupid. Hopefully, this will be patched up soon.


Game Review ( Guitar Hero 2 Track Pack 1,2,3 - 360 )

( Note: These "Track Packs" were just released on April 11th )


Track Pack 1:
"Bark at the Moon" Ozzy Osbourne
"Hey You" The Exies
"Ace of Spades" Motorhead

Track Pack 2:
"Killer Queen" Queen
"Take it Off" The Donnas
"Frankenstein" The Edgar Winter Group

Track Pack 3:
"Higher Ground" Red Hot Chili Peppers
"Infected" Bad Religion
"Stellar" Incubus


The first thing I thought when I saw these packs was why they picked such random songs and threw them in random packs, and why they put some of the not-so-good songs for DLC ( downloadable content ) before some other better ones. Songs that I don't particularilly care for of these 9 songs are "Stellar" and "Hey You", followed by "Higher Ground". They just are some of the weaker songs from Guitar Hero I. I was also surprised at how the songs are to play even on expert. I've 100% "Stellar", "Infected", "Killer Queen", and "Hey You", and almost "Take it Off". Not to say that's a bad thing. I'd say the best pack of the three overall is probably Track Pack 2. All three of the songs are fun to play. "Take it Off" is downright catchy, "Frankenstein" is a classic, and "Killer Queen" isn't too bad, though easy. The best thing about these packs though, byfar, is that the hammer-ons and pull-offs actually work. People who played Guitar Hero I on the PS2 would know what I'm talking about. Even when you got the hammer-on right at the exact time, it sometimes wouldn't count, ending your combo, which was frustrating. This has been fixed in these packs, and "Frankenstein" is a great example. Here's my review for each song and pack overall.

"Bark at the Moon" 5/5: Fun and challenging on Hard and Expert.
"Hey You" 4.25/5: Repetetive and easy, but a pretty surprisingly fun song to play.
"Ace of Spades" 4.25/5: A pretty good rock song.

"Killer Queen" 4/5: Not a bad song, but annoying to play more than one or two times over in a short period.
"Take it Off" 5/5: One of my top 3 favorite songs of the 9. Catchy song from the movie Dodgeball.
"Frankenstein" 5/5: Another great song. Really fun to play, and a good song for hammer-on practice.

"Higher Ground" 4/5: Very redundant, and easy after a few tries.
"Infected" 5/5: This may be my favorite song of the 9. Although extremely easy on any difficulty, the rhythm is mesmerizing.
"Stellar: 4/5: Pretty repetetive, not too exciting to play, and very easy.


DIFFICULTY: I will rate the packs 1-5 on overall difficulty. 1 being easiest, 5 being hardest.

Track Pack 1: 4.25/5 I can only say one thing - "Bark at the Moon". Toughest song of the 9, easily, and "Ace of Spades" is also a decent challenge to get a good score on.

Track Pack 2: 2/5 I'd say this is the easiest pack, but not by much next to number 3. "Frankenstein" may be hard for some, but once you learn hammer-ons, it's an easy song.

Track Pack 3: 1.75/5 Very easy. "Stellar" is an easy 100% every single time, "Infected" is about a 98%-99% every time, and "Higher Ground" really isn't challenging either. Easily the easiest of the three.


BEST VALUE: I will rate the packs 1-5 on overall best value. 1 being worst, 5 being best.

Track Pack 1: 4/5 I'm rating this higher than I initially thought I would. "Bark at the Moon" is as good as ever, but "Hey You" is surprisingly fun this time around for whatever reason. "Ace of Spades" is also a pretty good song.

Track Pack 2: 4.5/5 Another solid pack. "Frankenstein" and "Take if Off" are awesome songs, but "Killer Queen" isn't the best song around. Still a great pack just for the other two, though.

Track Pack 3: 4/5 Not quite as good as Track Pack 2. "Infected" is just about my favorite song to play out of the 9, but "Higher Ground" is nothing special, and "Stellar" is boring. Like I've said, "Infected" is easy, but freakishly catchy.



It's a tough call, but if you only have enough money to get one Track Pack, as of now I would have to say Track Pack 2, but not by much. If you are obsessed with"Bark at the Moon", get Track Pack 1 - it still has two other good songs, and if you like a song in Track Pack 3 ( likely "Infected" ) the other two probably won't suit your style. So in a hard decision, the best pack to get by pretty much default is:

Track Pack 2


Now overall overall, ( that makes no sense) all of the packs are pretty impressive. The hammer-ons work now, ( thank god ) and the sound seems to have improved in the songs. All three of these packs are definitely worth buying for the hardcore Guitar Hero fan. Even though not the best of songs have been released yet, it's highly likely that they will be soon.


Monday, April 09, 2007

Game Review ( TMNT - 360 )

Graphics: 2.5/5 Mediocre. The turtles look bland, the enviroments, while creative, offer nothing impressive. This game definitely isn't eye candy. There are, however, cut scenes straight from the movie, which is pretty cool, as well as downloadable mini-videos and pictures that you buy with coins that you get while playing the game.

Sound: 2.75/5 Not much better than the graphics - I like the voice actors in cut scenes, but in fighting stages, the same line is repeated over and over again. The whacks and the like aren't awesome either, just average.

Control: 3/5 Overly simple. 90% of this game involves jumping from place to place, with sometimes terrible camera angles bugging you. You basically press A, and when you're fighting, press B, and that's just about it.

Fun: 3/5 Overall, this game is just shallow, shallow, shallow. It's pretty easy to get through, and any man, woman, or child can play through this game and beat it, since there are checkpoints around every corner - literally. So while the game is flawed and doesn't make for the most enjoyable time in the long run, it has its moments, ( albeit very rare ) and it's a good game for fans of the TMNT franchise. Although, most people will simply rent this game just to get a nice fat 1000 achievement points.


Friday, April 06, 2007

Game Review ( Guitar Hero 2 - 360 )

Graphics: 4/5 Although slightly upgraded, not much has changed. The only thing that really has is your character model. The other members of your band look virtually the same as they did in Guitar Hero 2 for the PS2. The venues look very similar, too. The graphics look sharper, and the lights look better, but that's about it. Also, the loading times seem to have sped up a little bit, but I don't know if they actually are faster or not.

Sound: 5/5 Once again, Guitar Hero 2 delivers. Except this time, the songs sound better than on the PS2 version, and clearer. The new songs also sound like the real thing ( The Trooper, Salvation, Dead!, Billion Dollar Babies, Rock 'N Roll Hoochie Koo, Possum Kingdom, Life Wasted, and Hush ). Especially Dead!, since it is a master track. The sound is the same as GH2 for the PS2, but has only improved thanks to the 360.

Control: 5/5 The control remains the same. The hammer-on/pull-off technique is the same as GH2 PS2 and not like they were in Guitar Hero 1, where they were frustrating and near impossible to do. The buttons still work well in the songs and feel as close as it gets to playing the real thing.

Fun: 5/5 Still as fun as ever. With the inclusion of leaderboards, it makes one of my favorite games ever even better. The new songs are also a blast to play, for the most part, and the best part is definitely the downloadable content. Although no EXACT details have been released as to when the first downloadable song pack will come out, it is stated by many that it will likely be released one week after the game's launch. The fact that Guitar Hero 2 for the 360 has improved in every way is good enough, but now the addition of downloadable songs, themes, and gamer pictures have made this game better than ever. Whether you've played Guitar Hero 1 or 2 or not, you should definitely buy Guitar Hero 2 if you have a 360. It's easily the 360's game of the year so far.