Posts Tagged ‘Xbox 360’

Introducing Xbox SmartGlass

Saturday, November 10th, 2012

Microsoft’s second-screen application is out on Android, iOS and Windows, but what’s it actually like?

Xbox Smartglass stands a good chance of being a real game changer. It’s a free app that lets you control your Xbox via a smartphone or tablet. We’ve written a bit about it before.

So naturally, we were excited — that’s some hefty and useful functionality for an app that’s free. There’s just been one problem: we can’t make it work.

Actually, to be clear, there are a couple of functions that we can’t make work: the on-screen keyboard and the browser. The controller that lets you tool around your Xbox dashboard — that works perfectly. But the really cool features, including the “play here” option that lets you take stuff from the Xbox 360 to a tablet? Not at all.

We’ve tried on a Samsung Galaxy S3, an Apple iPad 3 and a Samsung Windows 8 tablet. We tried a Nexus 7, but that’s not compatible with SmartGlass it seems. We’ve also tried two different Xboxes and three different wireless networks.

In every case, the browser and keyboard options are greyed out and cannot be selected.

The only hint we’ve had from the app about what might be wrong is the following error message:

The problem is that the two times we’ve had this message, we have definitely been on the same wireless network for both the Xbox and the mobile device. It has left us confused.

We’ve spoken to Microsoft about these issues, and they’ve been kind enough to invite us out to their HQ next Tuesday to have a chat and see if we can get to the bottom of this.  So has anyone else been having any problems? And if so — are there any questions you’d like us to ask Microsoft?

Disney released a playable demo of Epic Mickey 2 for X360

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

Epic Mickey 2 demo available now on Xbox Live

Early hands-on demo exclusive to Gold subscribers, PSN demo due later today

Disney has released a playable demo of Epic Mickey 2 for Xbox 360 via Xbox Live, with a PSN demo due in today’s US PS Store update.

Epic Mickey 2 Screenshot The early taster is available now exclusively to Xbox Live Gold subscribers and will require 1.13GB of hard drive space.Without being too specific about the contents of the demo, the official blurb says it lets you “join Mickey Mouse and Oswald the Lucky Rabbit in an epic battle to save the magical world of Wasteland”.

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Disney has confirmed an Epic Mickey 2 release date of November 23 in the UK. It will also be available as a Wii U lunch title on November 30.

Top 10 most underrated games this generation

Monday, October 22nd, 2012

There have been literally thousands of videogames released since Microsoft kick-started this generation of consoles back in 2005.

And all of the middling and major titles released over the past seven years have each been put through the same brutal acid-test of critic reviews, user scores and aggregated numbers.

Some videogames, however, have had a tougher time than others – falling out of favour for whatever reason despite showing promise. So below we are celebrating the unpolished gems of this world. The rough diamonds that, for whatever reason, haven’t had the big break they deserved.

A quick clarification before we begin: when people talk about ‘underrated games’, they tend to start rattling off games such as Bayonetta or Vanquish. Those games aren’t underrated. They sold like they were N-Gage exclusives, granted, but they’re not underrated. Pretty much everyone who has played them agrees they’re great.

The benchmark is simple. We are hand-picking the best games that scored less than a 75 per cent average on Metacritic. Each one is likely lurking in a pre-owned bin somewhere, and hopefully with our advice you’ll be more tempted to give them all a deserved home and some much-deserved TV time.


Prototype 2

Click to view larger image PS3, Xbox 360, PCMetacritc score: 74

Sample critique: “The action requires little real skill to control and although gaining new powers is a strong impetuous for continuing it’s all extremely shallow and inconsequential” – Metro GameCentral – 6/10

Why it’s secretly a bit good: It’s the epic open-world superhero game that the likes of Spidey and Superman have promised in the past, but never quite delivered.

‘Shallow and inconsequential’ is a pretty good summary of Prototype 2’s action, but since when did a GTA clone have to be a Franz flippin’ Kafka novel? While the New York Zero setting is a little contrived, gliding from skyscraper to skyscraper like a murderous sugar glider is a top laugh.


Ridge Racer 6

Click to view larger image Xbox 360Metacritic score: 74

Sample critique: “Mediocre at best. If you’re trying to find a simple racer to appease someone who is confused with such daunting tasks as, say, reciting the alphabet, then Ridge Racer 6 might be what you’re looking for” – Game Over Online – 6/10

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Why it’s secretly a bit good: Namco only have themselves to blame for Ridge Racer 6’s lacklustre reviews. Like a Mini on a frozen Winter morning, it takes an absolute age to get going.

Power through the sluggish opening quarter however and your reward is a pulsating twitch racer that challenges you to steer a car sideways through the eye of a needle at screen-blistering speeds. For an additional thrill, try reciting the alphabet while you do so.


Pandora’s Tower

Click to view larger image WiiMetacritic score: 74

Sample critique: “Pandora’s Tower doesn’t offer anything appealing or unique, and is not a Wii title that will find a home with many gamers” – Gameplanet – 5/10

Why it’s secretly a bit good: It’s no surprise that Pandora’s Tower got overlooked – a Nintendo console is always going to be a tough place for a Zelda clone to make a living.

But Pandora’s Tower carved a niche for itself by adding a speedrunning twist to the ponderous Zelda format. Pandora’s dungeons might not be as fiendishly inventive as Eiji Aonuma’s twining inventions, but the stress of a constantly ticking clock makes it easy to muff up even the simplest of puzzles.


Space Giraffe

Click to view larger image Xbox 360, PCMetacritic score: 68

Sample critique: “Maybe if the gameplay were more endearing to the casual gamer, or if the visuals didn’t make half of the people who play the game foam at the mouth…just maybe Space Giraffe would have been as cool as its designers had hoped” – IGN, 47%

Why it’s secretly a bit good: Famously eccentric designer Jeff Minter out-weirded even himself when he decided to take a pile of Tempest grids and overlay them with a disorientating light synthesiser effect. “It’s almost impossible to tell what’s going on” bemoaned reviews at the time. A perfectly valid criticism, but it’s worth noting that this was exactly Minter’s intention.

To survive Space Giraffe’s visual onslaught, you have to play it by ear – using the subtle audio cues to ‘feel’ your way around the grid. If it clicks, you’ve got yourself one of the most unique and nuanced shooters around. If it doesn’t, you’ve just got a garish mess. An iffy tutorial section didn’t help sway the floating voters.

At 400MP, it’s worth a punt to see which side of the divide you fall on.


Earth Defence Force 2017

Click to view larger image Xbox 360Metacritic score: 69

Sample critique: “Earth Defence Force 2017 is the action game equivalent of potato chips: no nutritional value, but tasty nonetheless” – Hardcore Gamer Magazine – 45%

Why it’s secretly quite good: EDF 2017 is ugly and jerky, true, but it’s absolute bucketloads of fun too. Someone once described it to us as ‘Robotron in 3D’, and that nails it on the head for us.

We mean, it throws you into a fully-destructible city, with a whopping great cannon and an infinite amount of giant ants/robots/spiders to test it out on. What’s not to like? The lack of online multiplayer maybe, but come on. Don’t be like that.

Excite Truck

Click to view larger image Nintendo WiiMetacritic score: 72

Sample critique: “It might show off how well racers on the Wii will work when developers finally do it properly (yes, Ubisoft, we’re looking at you) but even so, there’s just not enough here to warrant the premium price” – Games TM – 6/10

Why it’s secretly quite good: Excite Truck was a victim of inflated expectations. For the first few years of the Wii’s existence, people expected motion control to provide a wonderful new dimension to games; the kind of next level experience that Nintendo had always promised. Ultimately, the controller’s limitations meant that the revolution was not going to happen (though Nintendo, which had sold more than 95 million of the machines, would beg to differ).

The Wii’s best games are often the early ones that kept things simple. Games such as Excite Truck, which is one of those breed of racers where the trick is to correct your positioning in mid-air so you don’t lose momentum when you land.

We’re spoiled for choice with these at the moment (MotoHeroz, Trials et al), but Excite Truck is the best 3D example of the sub-genre, and its wild handling is a perfect match for the Wiimote’s jittery nature. Terrible name, mind.


Binary Domain

Click to view larger image PS3, PC, Xbox 360Metacritic score: 72

Sample Critique: “It’s the best kind of 7/10. The gunplay is raucous, but never revolutionary. The relationships make you laugh, if not cry. Binary Domain is unpolished in all the right places” – Official PlayStation Magazine – 7/10

Why it’s secretly quite good: There’s one thing Binary Domain gets very, very right, and it’s not the box art. It’s the mechs. Most specifically, the satisfying way they fall apart at the seams (rivets?) when you shoot at them.

Mechs must have a good union, because games rarely manage to get this simple thing right. It’s okay for us humans to bleed rivers, but mechs tend to be allowed to die quietly and with dignity. Binary Domain addresses this imbalance with glorious, metal-crunching fury. Death to our mechanical oppressors!


Deadly Premonition

PS3, Xbox 360Metacritic score: 68%

Sample critique: “Awful in nearly every way. The Twin Peaks meets Resident Evil with a dash of Grand Theft Auto formula sounds pretty great, but it was well beyond the capabilities of this development team. Terrible controls. Terrible pacing. Terrible sound effects. Terrible visuals.” – IGN – 20%

Why it’s secretly quite good: Deadly Premonition holds the Guinness World Record for “Most Critically Polarizing Survival Horror Game”, which in itself holds the record for “Most Peculiarly Specific World Record Category”. Little wonder really as it’s really quite bizarre.

Deadly Premonition is a game that defies easy classification. The closest we can come to describing it is as a budget Resident Evil with a penchant for mischief. Brutal acts of violence are accompanied by terrible one-liners. Outlandishly freakish scenes are juxtaposed by mundane segments where you trim your beard or swig coffee. It’s a surreal piece of interactive story-telling and you’ll either love it or hate it for that.


Alpha Protocol

Click to view larger image PS3, Xbox 360, PCMetacritic score: 72

Sample critique: “Alpha Protocol’s astounding intricacies are tarnished by bugs, clumsy gameplay mechanics, and rough production values” – Gamespot – 6/10

Why it’s secretly quite good: You have to dig deep to get the most from Alpha Protocol, but it’s worth the blood and tears.

Your digging will have to cut through a crust of ugly presentation and a mantle of shoddy AI. Then you’ve got to drill through the near-impenetrable outer core that is the main character’s crouching animation, which makes him look like he’s filled his pants.

Dig past all of that, and you get to sip from Alpha Protocol’s delicious gooey liquid centre; a stealth-action RPG which gives you a mind-boggling number of ways to develop your character’s skill set and approach each mission.


SSX Blur

Click to view larger image WiiMetacritic score: 74

Sample critique: “It all boils down to the controls. When you have the capability to utilize the innovative controls of the Wii, be sure to use them to the fullest extent” – Cheat Code Central – 52%

Why it’s secretly quite good: Does this sound familiar? It’s Excite Truck syndrome all over again. With the benefit of hindsight, we can see SSX Blur for what it actually is: a cracking little snowboarding game that works well within the Wiimote’s limited capabilities. Carving into the snow with the nunchuk feels great. We’ve even grown fond of the cartoon aesthetic. Time heals all wounds, right?

FIFA 13 Demo Out Now For XBox 360, PS3 and PC

Friday, September 14th, 2012

After almost a day of waiting PS3 fans have finally been able to get their eager hands on the demo for this year’s edition of the behemoth FIFA footballing franchise, after Sony failed to meet the release window schedule they initially announced through EA Sports yesterday.

To celebrate the launch of the demo, EA Sports have released a brand new video showcasing exactly what players can expect from the demo, including the skill games that will help them hone their on-pitch abilities prior to heading into big matches.

Though the demo has not been updated to include the latest round of transfers from the last transfer window, including Robin Van Persie’s move to Manchester United, Alex Song’s to Barcelona and Maicon’s move to Man City, the gameplay is ridiculously good, and EA Sports’ new features have gone some considerable way to reinventing the gameplay experience and amping up the realism factor.

Never before has football gaming felt this good or this realistic, and if you’re considering downloading the demo now, stop immediately and get it done. You won’t be disappointed, unless you’re an Arsenal fan who wanted to forget about the Van Persie and Song transfer sagas…

You can follow all of our FIFA 13 coverage by heading over to our dedicated FIFA 13 hub-page, where you will find features, media, and game information.

FIFA 13 is released on 28th September.

Microsoft Kinect gets price drop: now only $110

Thursday, August 23rd, 2012

Kinect gets price drop: now $110

Related Topics – xbox 360, Microsoft, Kinect

Just in case you haven’t become the controller yet, Microsoft has announced a price drop for its Kinect peripheral. Effective immediately, the Kinect will drop from $150 to $110–that’s a $40 savings, for those of you less mathematically inclined.

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Retailers have already implemented the drop. We’ve spotted the reduced price Kinect at Amazon and Best Buy. Target appears to have the best deal of the bunch, however. Not only do you get Kinect Adventures (standard with every model), you also get The Gunstringer and Fruit Ninja Kinect. Call your local retailer if you’re interested in jumping in.

Top 10 Best Adventure Laptop Computer Games 2012

Friday, April 13th, 2012

PC gamers enjoy their action and adventure games in a way that Xbox 360 or PS3 owners cannot. Adventure games can be unleashed to their full potential with real full HD 1080p graphics and unlimited memory to process the latest games. Console gamers argue that it is much more exciting to play all the adventure games on Xbox 360 or PS3 on a huge 60’’ TV while comfortably sitting on a couch. That may be true to an extent, but no one can deny the fact that the PC is much more powerful than any console and delivers the true gaming experience! Pc Adventure games are ported from all platforms and thus have more games and titles available than any console. Following is the list of Top 10 Best Adventure PC Games 2012 and it lists all the best games from this year which should not be missed at any cost! With release of new adventure PC games like J.U.L.I.A., The Journey Down, The New Adventure of Sherlock Holmes and Dracula just around the corner, lets see how these adventure games fare against them!

X360 PRO
X360 PRO

10. Zoo Tycoon Complete Collection

Zoo Tycoon Complete Collection

The most addictive simulation game after The Sims, Zoo Tycoon was a super hit when it was first released and has a long way in terms of better graphics as well as superior game play. The Zoo Tycoon Complete Collection brings all the fun and excitement to your PC that this series offers and guaranteeing you a bucketful of great time! You start off with animals and build their cages and turn everything in the zoo into a public attraction over time. Zoo Tycoon Complete Collection takes the game a few steps further with the Marine, Dinosaur and Endangered animals pack. Zoo Tycoon is a fun and challenging game and should not be taken lightly if you want to get rich!

9. Portal 2

Portal 2

Portal 2 is a very unique first person action adventure game which will make you exercise your brain cells more than you can imagine! Released by Electronic Arts, Portal 2 is a puzzle game in which you have to teleport from one place to another in order to progress in the game and solve the riddles. The teleporting holes are made by a special gun and choosing the right places to skip to is quite crucial in this game.

8. Spore

Spore

Regardless of what the Theory of evolution states or what Charles Darwin believed, Spores takes you back to day 1 and lets you create pores and evolve them over the centuries as they advance into better, faster and more intelligent creatures. Spores let you create, experiment and have loads of fun with all those microorganism which you so hated back in the biology class. Spores by EA ranks 8th on the list of Top 10 Best Adventure PC games 2012.

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7. Fallout New Vegas Ultimate Edition

Fallout New Vegas Ultimate Edition

The Fallout series continues with Fallout New Vegas Ultimate Edition as our hero continues long after all of us have died and civilization has ceased to exist. Fallout is based on an open world RPG format which gives gamers hundreds of hours of playing and exploring the deeply detailed world. New Vegas Ultimate Edition also holds the world record for having the most number of dialogues ever included in a game. The experience is quite fascinating and the story line quite convincing and intriguing. Fallout New Vegas ranks 7th in the Top 10 Best Adventure PC Games 2012 list.

6. Nancy Drew Last Train to Blue Moon Canyon

Nancy Drew Last Train to Blue Moon Canyon

Those who though that Nancy Drew was only for elder sisters are in for a big surprise as the leading lady(sorry Agatha Christie) makes a world saving appearance on the PC in the game titles Nancy Drew Last train to Blue Moon Canyon. Mystery fans are jumping in joy as they relive the fictional adventure of Nancy Drew along with the Hardy Boys as they investigate and solve a series of mysteries. Nancy Drew Last train to Blue Moon Canyon is a part of the Train mystery series which has over 30 adventures. So go on and relive your childhood with Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys!

5. Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic

Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic

Make a cupcake with the face of a jedi on top and you’ll sell the whole batch in the blink of an eye. Such is the reputation and entertainment value of Star Wars. The RPG game Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic is no exception as it proves to be a true Star Wars episode in every sense and got re-released many times due to its popularity and public demand. The games progresses according to your gained skills and the interaction that you carry out with various characters in the game. Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic lives up to the expectation of every fan and has been ranked 5th in the list of the Top 10 Best Adventure PC Games 2012.

4. Mass Effect 3

Mass Effect 3

It was pretty hard to miss the launch of Mass Effect 3 and the huge outcry over the way this great series was ended. The hurt and angered gamers went as far as to raise funds and send the BioShock team things in order to convince them to change the fate of the great Shepard. The gameplay was better than ever and the AI of opponents was a bit tweaked as well. All in all Mass Effect 3 is one of those game series that will always be remembered and sold over the generations!

3. World of Goo

World of Goo

The first thing that will come to your mind when you pop in the World of Goo DVD and launch the game is that there was a mistake and someone pulled one over you and put in some cheap 80s game in the box. World of Goo is a surprisingly simple and addictive game and it manages to be an excellent exercise for the grey little cells of your brain at the same time! Little Goo balls having various special abilities are given to you for every stage and you have to manage to get to the exit without running out of Goo balls or time. Sounds easy? Give World of Goo a try and find out how it managed to get on the 3rd position in the Top 10 Best Adventure PC Games 2012 list.

2. Mass Effect 2

Mass Effect 2

Mass Effect had a very profound effect on the masses(no pun intended). Mass Effect 2 did pretty well in the gaming community as the series continues the action after a two year gap with Commander Shepard still in the driving seat and battling the baddies of the universe. The RPG gameplay in Mass Effect 2 is superb and very responsive and the story line as exciting as ever.

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R4

€ 14,49

1. Mass Effect

Mass Effect

Till Mass Effect 3 is released in March 2012, we will have to do with the first 2 editions of Mass Effect. Mass Effect created a huge stir among video game lovers and upped the ante with each edition. Since BioWare released the first RPG back in November 2007, Commander Shepard has become a iconic name among game enthusiastics. Players control the commander as he leads the fight against the robots hell bent of destroying every living object in our universe. Mass Effect ranks 1st in the  Top 10 Best Adventure PC Games 2012 list.

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