As preparations for E3 are underway, XBL have been very thoughtful this week and have spoilt us with three quality yet diverse games to buy or download. Whether youâ€™re after flying, fighting or simply taking over the entire world, there is something for everyone and lots of hours of happy game playing to be had.
In the arcade this week:
Snoopy Flying Ace – 800MP
Itâ€™s not only Woodstock that can fly – now you can join Snoopy and the rest of the â€˜Peanutsâ€™ cast as you take to the skies in this addictive aerial title. Itâ€™s very easy to learn the controls but becoming the number one flying ace will take more than skill. There is a variety of World War I inspired planes to choose from (some are fast yet flimsy whilst others are slow but almost indestructible) and deciding on which special weapon to equip will also affect your racing performance which all adds to the fantastic dogfights! The single player campaign is the best place to practice your barrel rolls and loops but the variety of online modes is where this game really shines with co-op, free for alls and team games like catch the flag.
Snoopy Flying Ace is great dogfighting fun for all ages and is my recommendation of the week.
Head over to Avatar Items to kit your avatar out in all things Snoopy with my favourite being the Snoopy Goggles and Flight Cap for 160MP
Elsewhere to buy:
Civilization Revolution – Â£19.99
Surely this has to be the greatest strategy game of all time?! From humble caveman beginnings (think hairy guys hitting each other over the head with a club) to sophisticated, diplomatic, technologically advanced leaders, build your empire up in your quest to rule the world. With many of historyâ€™s greatest leaders to either fight, learn from or trade with (Napoleon, Queen Elizabeth, Ghandi etc), this has a faster pace than other titles in the Civilization series and there is little to no chance of progressing without getting your hands bloodied. I prefer this type of play and think this title should appeal to gamers who have always shied away from Civilization titles but always wondered what the fuss was all about.
Soul Calibur IV – Â£19.99
Firstly, this game is beautiful. High definition graphics and a gorgeous colour palette make it breathtaking to look at. Alongside some familiar faces (Mitsurugi, Voldo, Raphael, Taki to name but a few), there are some new characters from high profile manga artists or you can play as Star Warsâ€™ Yoda (exclusively available on the Xbox 360 â€“ Darth Vader appears on the PS3 whilst both versions feature The Apprentice from Star Wars: The Force Unleashed which was released on XBL last month). Also, thereâ€™s a customize-your-own-character mode where you can create your dream fighter and the more you customize, the more options you unlock. In fact, the best thing about this whole game is how much variety there is. You can use your customized character in any of the modes and the online battles are intense as the number of weapons and special moves is immense. Thereâ€™s also the addition of the Critical Finish move, which you can use to punish your opponent if they are a wimp and block too much. A fabulous fighting game for both fans of the series and newcomers to this battle world.
Add-Ons now and as always, thereâ€™s music to be played:
Rock Band has a Spoon Track pack 01 for 560MP which features:
â€Trouble Comes Runningâ€ by Spoon
â€Donâ€™t You Evahâ€ by Spoon
â€Got Nuffinâ€ by Spoon
â€I Turn My Camera Onâ€ by Spoon
Guitar Hero 5 has a Stone Temple Pilots Track Pack for 440MP which features:
â€Plushâ€ by Stone Temple Pilots
â€Sex Type Thingâ€ by Stone Temple Pilots
â€Between the Linesâ€ by Stone Temple Pilots
All of which can be bought individually for 160MP each
Lips has some Motown masterpieces on offer for 160MP each:
â€Shotgunâ€ by Jr. Walker and the AllStars
â€My Guyâ€ by Mary Wells
â€Dancing in the Streetâ€ by Martha Reeves and the Vandellas
Dead To Rights: Retribution
GAC pack â€“ 400MP
Featuring four new modes of play, including the Assault on the 87th Precinct where you can take control of 3 different types of GAC soldiers and Riot Control Mode where you play for style and speed to achieve a maximum score as Jack and Shadow, repelling GAC assault forces. Also included in the GAC Pack are new skins for Jack and Shadow plus Action Mode, which turns rounds into explosive rounds and Noir Mode allows for replay of the game with authentic Noir Visuals â€“ very nice.
Way of the Samurai 3
Weapons Part Set â€“ 80MP
Whether youâ€™ve chosen the good or evil way of the samurai, you need weapons and this Add-On is exactly what youâ€™d expect – 40 new weapon parts for additional gameplay fun! Weapons include a rifle sword, chain sword and even a Tuna, all of which you can create 10 new weapons with. Choosing to remain loyal and respectful or greedy and murderous after youâ€™ve created these new weapons is entirely up to you.
Call Of Duty Modern Warfare 2
Resurgence Pack â€“ 1200MP
Sergeant Gary “Roach” Sandersonâ€™s work it would seem is never done. This pack includes a variety of impressive multiplayer maps: â€œCarnival,â€ an abandoned amusement park with a variety of unique vantage points; â€œFuel,â€ a massive oil refinery with extremely long sightlines and â€œTrailer Park,â€ a maze-like mobile estate surrounded by war-torn debris. You also get two legendary maps from CoD 4: Modern Warfare in more detail than ever, including â€œStrike,â€ a large urban centre in the desert; and â€œVacant,â€ a fast-paced Russian office complex with few places to take cover â€“ phew!
Finally, Indie Games and this week itâ€™s coloured balls, coloured blocks and a mystery set in ancient Rome â€“ Oh, I thought we had a theme there, never mind.
Blast â€“ 80MP
Shoot a ball from the start green barrel to the yellow barrel using the moving barrels in between. Sounds simple but the game speeds up with each level so careful timing and accuracy might make this trickier than it first appears and I think this could be the most addictive title of the week.
Rock A Block â€“ 80MP
I love any game to do with roller coasters or puzzles and this combines both as you race along twirling your carriage block to match the colour of the track. You can race up to 5 opponents or go head to head in a 2-player twistathon. With nine unlockable maps, five unlockable opponents and 9 unlockable add ons to give you race booster attributes, this looks to have plenty of gameplay whilst testing the reactions of the most seasoned gamer.
Mindâ€™s Eye of Jupiter: Episode 2 â€“ 240MP
Following on from Episode 1, you play Alice who is searching for a fabled time traveling device amidst ancient Roman ruins. The stunning graphics as you explore the scenery are extremely detailed whilst the puzzles are quite tricky. Perhaps a little overpriced but worth checking out. Will Alice ever find the Dream Guide who waits to answer the questions she has? A really intriguing title.
A cacophony of great, unusual and excellent games this week, all for a good price after some of the more pricey titles weâ€™ve seen recently. Let the rain come this week, as thereâ€™s a lot to stay in and play.