Review: Gears of War 2: All Fronts Collection

Recently SlayerAgamon and I got together for some face to face Gaming, Yeah Kaneda Gallon was there too but he didn’t sit in for the Gears of War 2 session we found ourselves in. Slayer and I were off and running in the newly released deleted scenes campaign, when I turn to him and asked `Stealth or Gun`s Blazing` I thought his eyes were going to bug out of his head – GUNS BLAZIN! was his answer as if there were another way to play Gears. I take the controls behind Marcus, and Slayer playing through as Dom, we set off for some MAJOR Grub killing.

While you sit and look at the 1600 MS point price tag and debate the value – I’m telling you now – it is completely worth it. I mean look at all the stuff you get:

* The Bonus deleted single-player chapter, “Road to Ruin,”
* Gears of War 2 multiplayer map packs: Flashback [400 MS], Combustible [800 MS], Snowblind [800 MS], and Dark Corners [1200 MS] (19 Maps – Allfathers Garden, Canals, Courtyard, Flood, Fuel Depot, Fuel Station, Gold Rush, Gridlock, Grind Yard, Highway, Mansion, Memorial, Nowhere, Sanctuary, Subway, Tyro Station, Under Hill, War Machine, and Way Station.

Gears of War 2 is probably the one game that I tell every xbox 360 owner I run into that they NEED to own, even before Halo 3. This expansion pack makes that gap even bigger and your only paying HALF price for all the map packs (individually 3200 MS points) and the extra level. Your going to find so much replay value in this title it will be on permanent rotation in your system.

Feed Your Console says Gears of War 2: All Fronts Collection is a Thumbs Up – Must have expansion.

Review: Batman – Arkham Asylum

Batman has had many great successes in comics, movies, cartoons and even TV shows (gotta love Adam West) but he’s never ever been properly represented in a videogame. Eidos and developer Rocksteady hope to change that stigma for the Dark Knight with a 3rd person adventure in Arkham Asylum.

The story begins with Batman as he takes the Joker back to Arkham Asylum after apprehending him a little bit too easily. The Joker manages to break free and locks down the entire facility with the help of the blazingly hot Harley Quinn. As Batman the user embarks on a long journey through the pits of Arkham Asylum during the Joker’s reign of terror.

The gameplay is your very typical 3rd person perspective view with simple yet completely accessible and effective fighting mechanics. Through combat, experience is earned to allow for upgrading the plethora of bat-gadgets at your disposal and combat skills. Each new section opened up tasks Batman with saving people, deciphering clues using his detective skills and figuring out puzzles left behind by the Riddler.

The first things any gamer will notice is that the presentation and graphics are top notch and to top that all off the voice acting is impeccable. The Joker really sounds like a crazed maniac and Batman sounds like a dark and brooding mystery man. Arkham Asylum is huge and damn spooky with it’s dark corridors, dirty rooms and the constant threat of being attacked by the Jokers goons or any of Batman’s incarcerated supervillians as end bosses.

The upgrade systems for Batman’s Suit and tools is easy to understand and allows you to use these items in new ways; guided batarangs (6 axis), suit upgrades and even new combos and throws to help you beat down the Joker’s goons.

With it’s incredible presentation, spot on voice acting, exciting gameplay and easy fighting mechanics, Batman – Arkham Asylum is a winner. This is truly a title that’s worthy of any gamers time. While the replay value may not be as high as some, seeking out the Riddlers challenges and traversing the various locales inside Arkham Asylum – this game is fantastic.

Pros:

* Accessible fighting mechanics
* Graphics
* Voice Acting

Cons:

* Replay value
* Not all of Batman’s enemies are featured in Boss battles

Feed Your Console gives Batman: Arkham Asylum an 9 out of 10

Could this be the Game of the year? Only time will tell.

Developer: Rocksteady Studios
Publisher: Warner Bros./ DC Comics and Eidos Interactive

Platform: Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3 (Reviewed), Xbox 360

FanExpo 2009 Photo Round up

Over the weekend here in Toronto we experienced an influx of Cos-Players, Horror Fans, Gamers and Treckies in an annual ritual we like to call Fan Expo.

More Photos and news to come!

HOT News: Xbox Price Drop

I just got this in from Microsoft and I couldn’t wait to share this amazing news with you Feeders out there. Today, Microsoft has announced a price drop on the Xbox 360 in Canada, effective Tomorrow (August 28th).

The following price drops will be in effect:

  • Xbox 360 Elite console will drop to $329 CDN.
  • Xbox 360 Pro console will now be priced at $279 CDN, while supplies last.
  • Get in on the Xbox 360 Arcade console, for $229 CDN.

Also coming August 28th, for a limited time is the Xbox 360 Elite Bundle that includes Halo 3 and a Wireless Network Adapter for a new low price of $329.99 CDN.

Here are the full details of what the bundles includes:

  • Xbox 360 Elite Console
  • Xbox 360 Wireless Networking Adapter (Priced from $77-99, depending on the retailer)
  • 1 Black Wireless Controller
  • 120 GB Memory Storage
  • Xbox LIVE Wired Headset
  • Network Ethernet Cable
  • 30 day Free Trial of Xbox LIVE Gold Membership
  • Xbox LIVE Silver Membership*
  • Halo 3

I think we will see many many happy gamers this holiday season, first the PS3 price drop and now the Xbox 360 following hot on it’s heals…

GAME ON!

GameStop Canada Trade and Save

Is your PS3 Fat taking up too much room on your shelf? Or maybe you just want the latest and coolest upgrade from Sony…

Either way your in luck with the trade and Save promotion from GameStop.ca this week. Head into any store and trade in your old PS3 Fat console and two games to upgrade to the PS3 Slim for only $50.

Check out the product specs for the PS3 Slim.

First Impressions – WET

They say that first impressions are the most important – and when I first saw video footage of WET – I was less than impressed. To me it looked like a cookie cutter action game with an over abundance of “Bullet Time” slow-mo gameplay akin to the Max Payne series. I had then heard that Activision, who was originally slated to release the game, had dropped out in late spring of 08. While it’s possible I had heard this before, it didn’t resonate with me because to be honest, I didn’t care all that much.

But then in April this past year, Bethesda Soft works announced that they’d be publishing the game. Then I became hopeful that perhaps with some extra TLC, this game could shape up to be something special.

Today the Demo dropped on Xbox Live and I’ve now spent a good 3-4 hours playing the same sequence of levels over and over and now I do believe that the second impression has become more important than the 1st. WET has you in the roll of femme fatale Rubi and she is as deadly as she’s blazing hot (voiced by Eliza Dushku – Faith in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Ya – HAWWWT!).

The game looks to have a very film noir/Grindhouse presentation. The graphics are pretty but grainy in that 70s style of film genre with copious amounts of action and gore. The game play is similar to that of Max Payne in the 3rd person perspective with plenty of bullet time action sequences that reek of so much style it’s almost sickening – from the sliding dual gun kills to the Berserker(?) mode Rubi enters half way through the demo where the screen is all red, black and white with it’s cell shaded graphics.

The demo in total is only about 15 minute in length but it should give you a good idea of what to expect in the game and I can only assume there are plenty more stylish kills and more over the top action sequences. I’m unsure of what the story will entail, but it looks to be one of those games that just ends up being good old fashioned fun. I must admit that now that I’ve had the chance to play, I’m really looking forward to seeing what happens next.

WET will be available at store near you for the Xbox 360 and PS3 September 15, 2009. Expect a full review in the near future. In the meantime download the demo and let us know your thoughts.

STAR WARS: THE OLD REPUBLIC

Check out this video of the trailer for the new up-and-coming multiplayer online game; STAR WARS: THE OLD REPUBLIC by BioWare & LucasArts. This preview of what is up and coming for this game looks very promising, plus an added feature of being fully voiced MMO. If the game is as detailed and colorful as this trailer, WOW fans look out there is a new MMO taken over. Enjoy the rich exciting moment captured between the two ultimate powers in the STAR WARS galaxies; The Sith Empire and the Jedi Order. Which side will you choose?

“Deceived” Cinematic Trailer – The sacking of Coruscant, and attack of the Jedi Temple.


View the official Site for STAR WARS: THE OLD REPUBLIC

EA Sports Active – Week 2

I know I know, I forgot to update everyone last week. What can I say? No excuse for that – Ok GC has kept us all pretty busy coupled with my newborn – there’s my excuse but rest assured I haven’t fallen off so that’s at least a good thing. I did mis a few days but I made up for them on alternating days.

The second week was tough man – Lemme tell ya. The Feed Your Console boys were over for the weekend and it was UGLY!!! So needless to say, the quality of eating was really bad (but tasted oh sooo good). I continued to do the workout as suggested by the program for roughly 40ish minutes – It whooped my ass as always and had me sweating up a storm. 1 thing that I haven’t exactly been shy about is the quality of the resistance band so I decided to try using my own and that really messed with the program because it thought I was missing my reps. I pushed through the program telling me i was screwing up and must now think of somethign I can do to get those reps labelled as quality with my own resistance bands.

Each day I attacked the exercises with energy and enthusiasm because I really do have a goal in mind (if you’ll remember I’d like to shed 30lbs) and I know it won’t happen overnight. My daily activities stayed pretty well the same with the elliptical and the eating

Typical Meals:
Breakfast: Tomato Sandwich on multi-grain bread with a little light Mayo and pepper, Tomato juice, coffee black
Snack: 1/2 Myoplex Lite protein bar
Lunch: Dinner leftovers – Grilled/BBQ Chicken breast with spinach and a vinegrate dressing
Snack: 1/2 Myoplex Lite Protein Bar
Dinner: Chicken or turkey breast with salad and VeggeGreens
Other activities: 30 minutes on an Elliptical trainer low intensity to warm up

I’m into my 3rd week and will be taking a weigh in sometime over the weekend. If you’re unsure about this tool, I can feel it in every muscle in my body as it pushes me to use proper form and enforces the quality over quantity model. I’m really having fun with it and I hear that November brings us a new set of exercises to work with – Here’s hoping EA can hook me up with that because if all goes to plan, I’ll have hit my goal by then and be looking to do more toning.

GamesCom 2009 – Microsoft

Holy Crap – I go to sleep for a few short hours and somehow I missed a ton of news from the Microsoft Press Conference at GamesCom.

Here’s a rundown of what I found out:

– Peter Molyneux kickstarted the MS conference talking about his mission, From there he talked about something new for Fable 2 called Fable Episodic. They’ll be splitting Fable 2 into 5 chapters and releasing them online – 1st chapter will be free beginning this September. (I’ll have to look a little more into this one. Stay Tuned for that)

– He went on to reveal that Fable 3 is coming down the pipe – They really want to give the gamer something new and have even made some big changes in the mechanics. Molyneux says that there is something funtamentally wrong with Fable but will not yet divuldge what that is.

– Says that in Fable you were one of many hereos, Fable 2 you were the only hero bringing together other heroes – We must take a big step with Fable 3 – it’s all about power.

– The user will be an iconic leader who has the power to eradicate poverty, or be the greedy tyrant and keep all the money for him/herself – We’ll be starting off as the son or daughter from the Fable 2 save and Albion will be ruled by a tyrant and our job is to gain support to start a revolution

– The 1st half of the game is the journey to become a great ruler – from the sounds of everything there is a global economy that will add a level of strategy to the game (not sure if I’m all that down with this but I’m interested)

– We’ll see some recurring characters from Fable 2 and not just Albion

– Seems that Lionhead has been experimenting with a few new mechanics; Staging, Judgements (judge people and allow them to defend that judgement) and Touch – Expressive and Dynamic.

– An example of Judgements is a girl who is caught stealing food. The Chef tells his side of the story and you can either immediately pass judgement or investigate further by asking the girl why she stole, she tells you it’s because her family is starving – Kind of a new way to get new quests

– An Example of touch is “When you first meet someone, you can either shake their hand or refuse. Later on, that handshake could become a hug, then an embrace, and then a full, passionate song.”

– Fable 3 hits in 2010 – but not too early in 2010
– Lionhead is still working very hard on Milo and Kate
– GDC he promises to reveal more….

That is all.

I find it to be very interesting that all they did for the MS show was talk about Fable 3 which is still pretty cool sounding and I am excited for the game but is that really all MS has to offer? What do you folks think? I’ll start poking around for the teaser trailer and some images.

EDIT – Here’s the announcement trailer folks – Enjoy

Meet the PS3

Here you go Feeders, You wantd it we delivered. Allow me to introduce you to the PS3. PlayStation®3 (CECH-2000A)

Product name PlayStation®3
Product code CECH-2000A (Charcoal Black)
CPU Cell Broadband Engine™
GPU RSX®
Audio output LPCM 7.1ch, Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby TrueHD, DTS, DTS-HD, AAC.
Memory 256MB XDR Main RAM, 256MB GDDR3 VRAM
Hard disk 2.5” Serial ATA 120GB *1
Inputs/

Outputs*2

Hi-Speed USB
(USB 2.0)
2
Networking Ethernet (10BASE-T, 100BASE-TX, 1000BASE-T) × 1
IEEE 802.11 b/g
Bluetooth® 2.0 (EDR)
Controller Wireless Controller Bluetooth®
AV output Resolution 1080p, 1080i, 720p, 480p, 480i (for PAL 576p, 576i)
HDMI OUT connector*3 1
AV MULTI OUT connector 1
Digital out (optical) connector 1
BDDVDCD
drive (read only)
Maximum read rate BD × 2 (BD-ROM)
DVD × 8 (DVD-ROM)
CD × 24 (CD-ROM)
Power AC 220 – 240, 50/60Hz*4
Power consumption Approx. 250W
External dimensions

(excluding maximum projecting part )

Approx. 290 × 65 × 290 mm (width × height × length)
Mass Approx. 3.2kg
Included *5 PlayStation®3 system × 1
Wireless Controller (DUALSHOCK®3) × 1
AC power cord × 1
AV cable × 1
USB cable × 1

*1 Hard disk capacity calculated using base 10 mathematics (1 GB = 1,000,000,000 bytes). System software versions 1.10 and later calculate capacity using binary mathematics (1 GB = 1,073,741,824 bytes), which will display lower capacity and free space. A portion of hard disk capacity is reserved for system administration, which varies depending upon system software version, and is not available for use.
*2 Usability of all connected devices is not guaranteed.
*3 “Deep Colour” and “x.v.Colour (xvYCC)” defined by HDMI ver.1.3a are supported.
*4 Power changes depending on countries or regions.
*5 For certain regions, Euro-AV cable will be included.
Note: This product is not compatible with PlayStation®2 games.