MEMBER PROFILE FOR mrmp3

Total Reviews: 65
Average Overall Score Given: 8.29231 / 10
Total Forum Posts: 430

Reviews
Mercenaries: Playground of Destruction

Overall: Love the open ended gameplay. Black market website is cool, and actually a lot of fun hunting down each person in the deck. Tons of bonus missions, some transportation, others "travel with this vehicle to this point in under to get

Gameplay: Black market website is awesome. Basically, as you progress through the game, you can buy munition drops along with vehicles, The more missions you accompish, the more vehicles and supplies you can buy, c4 drops being something you'll order a lot. You can hijack a vehicle of one faction, go destroy something in it, and make it seem like they fronted the attack. Many missions will have you doing this too. The deck of 52 is great, I just love killing the little peons who are so poorly guarded, many of'em are easy to find if you look at your intel, or if you fly around a lot, they pop up on radar if your anywhere near them so that's a fairly easy way of finding them. The face cards generally have better protection and even SAM-sites to blast your !&%$@#* out of the sky and rockets on the ground. It's pretty crazy. There's an auto-target thing for weapons on foot while tanks and turrets require manual aim. Overall, the game plays great, and every destructive thing you concoct is very satisfying.

Graphics: The characters models, cars, and environments aren't incredibly detailed, but nonetheless they are good. The particle effects are where the game shines. Explosions of cars and falling of building are wicked awesome, if you got enough dough to blow, you'll just buy C4 to knock down buildings. You can even put'em on a car, jump out, and detonate, just like in the BF:MC demo. Pretty good looking game considering all the stuff you can do.

Audio: Simply amazing. The music is excellent, the voice acting is superb, all the sound effects are just ridiculously awesome, from the guns to the explosions. It's really hard to describe, but definetely quite a treat for audiophiles.

Suggestions: Sequel with bigger booms and lots more stuff to do.

Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 Darkwatch

Overall: One thing I like about PC games in regards to multiplayer is regardless of how unpopular a game may sell, generally you'll run into about 250 people who are playing the game. For an XBL game, that isn't a lot, but for some XBL games it's a god send, there's almost NOBODY on. I hate it. It's like not being able to enjoy the meat and potatoes of the game. The storyline was pretty decent, not corny or bad just not on the level of Halo/Halo 2. 60FPS makes a big difference in play. Play this, then play Halo 2 multiplayer, and you'll feel like the game is running slow, swear to god happened to me. The fact there's no people on XBL really hurts the score for me cuz it's fun when you play it with people and there are a ton of levels, like 26 and alot of'em are very different. I'd recommend at least renting, cuz many might fine this worthy of a purchase.

Gameplay: First thing, ragdoll effects. AWESOME! Best in a console game. You can desecrate a person for like 5 seconds in multiplayer just meleeing their body watching it flail. The netcode is pretty solid, but sometimes sniping seems off to say the least. Also, the carbine is very inaccurate unless your zoomed in for some reason, well not zoomed, just in the red vision thing. The weapons are awesome, and defintely with the pistols, give the old west feeling. So does the carbine, Clint Eastwood as Blondie freeing Tuco before he's hung, defintely the feeling I get with that. The load times are pretty quick, the A.I. is pretty solid, mainly with the banshees, who fly down and melee generally only when they've flown behind you and others in front of you are distracting you. The dynamite throwing (which is like the grenade is this one) has a very small blast radius in mutliplayer, but if a guy is standing over it he's dead instantly. Not the mention the throwing physics are much different then halo 2, it tends to float in the air and not drop as quick.

Oh yea the multiplayer maps, very different, but all fun in their own ways. The ones meant for 2-4 players are really small, but they are good for that kind of game. Some of the 10-12 player maps though seem very large. I've only played some, one was a desert level with 3 automatic turrets and 2 cannon balls turrets that had a very big blast radius. One was like a small saloon town, the one on the demo, defintely some good 2v2 action there. And a map with 2 different types of vehicles, one really big and one fairly small, that level was massive, like MMO big, even with 32 iono if there'd be a lot of killing going on. There's no leaderboard which is really a bummer. No downloable content either, but with the plethora of guns and levels, I could really care less.

Graphics: I like the look, very dark, the guns are modeled great, a lot of blur effects though around the infinite-respawn trees and enemies you score a headshot on, can be kind of overbearing when there's too much of it on screen. The level design is fine in single player, kind of repetitive, but not to the point of "*sigh* this sucks" or "I'd rather be play Library in Halo 1", just it's noticeable. Like the other reviewer said, the texture aren't that clean, though they do have detail, and are vastly superior to the PS2 version, on top of the extended multiplayer options and amazing blazing 60FPS.

Audio: Gotta love the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly at the title screen, it's not identical, but it has the "wah-wah-waaaahhhh" noise. Explosions and gun sound effects are excellent and pack a lot of punch, especially the double pistols going full speed, except, surprisingly, the shotgun, I think it sounds really weak for a shotgun.

Suggestions: Gotta advertise this game better, showing PS2 footage isn't helping. It looks slow and sloppy, which the PS2 version probably is, but the Xbox version on the other hand looks so much better. Add leaderboards, clans, and maybe an option for downloadable content. Keep the setting, keep the music, please don't abandon the series. The vampire powers are awesome, though I think the Evil powers should be just as good as the Good powers in terms of effectiveness.

Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 Madden NFL 06

Overall: Most people generally have a group a friends who when you ask "wanna play some videogames?" the response is "what sports games you got?" And then, usually, some serious 2 v 2 or 4 v AI begins. It's almost an obligation as a sports gamer to own the newest football title. Last year, we all know how many leaps and bounds Sega and Visual Concepts made with 2k5 and quite frankly, it scared EA. Thus, they have the exclusive license not only for NFL, but for the AFL, and NCAA Football, making it the only makers of every wide-area American football based game. The promise was without competition, the innovation would be "top-notch", and knowing Tiburon that's taking a mediocre engine and tweaking it ever so slightly. This year there are some (not a lot) major changes and additions, though not all good. Obviously the QB Vision being the biggest addition. In terms of a football game, it's still enjoyable. Is it worth $50? Considering the fact there are some areas where 2k5 excelled at and still does and that only cost $20, I'm not entirely sure. But if your like me, and have friends who do nothing but play sports games, then you have to get this. They probably won't be disappointed.

Gameplay: One thing that's nice about the difficulty in 2k5 is that as the difficulty goes up, the AI gains skill but the ability of your computer offensive linemen and blockers doesn't diminish, meaning they won't just fall over all the time. This is where Madden and the 2k series differ greatly. If you move the difficulty up to All-Pro or All-Madden, good luck getting more than a 7 yard return on punts. Why? Because on those difficulties, past the line of scrimmage, noone is willing to engage their blocks, which means if the hangtime is pretty high, you'll be calling fair catch quite a bit. I've never sent a punt returner to the pro-bowl on those difficulties, I average around 5.0 yards and get 1-2 TD's mainly because the AI takes the angle wrong sometimes, like really really wrong where you have the whole sideline. Same thing goes for the run and pass game. The fact is Madden has it so your players LOSE ability. So runs, even with guys all in 90's, you'll see them often just getting plowed over, not even beaten by a spin or swim move, just flat out plowed over. Oh and your recievers, yea guys like T.O. , Chad Johnson, and Jeremy Shockey who have solid hands, tend to just drop wide-open passes, it's so random, I hate it.

QB Vision and Precision are technically not new to a football franchise. Precision passing has been on the 2k series since the first or second Dreamcast game. QB Vision is trying to incorporate what it looks like on the inside of the QB's helmet, with limited vision. 2k did it better, and it was called First-Person Football, that's as real as you get with a QB's vision, not seeing blind blitzes and the like. The inclusion seems pointless. Tom Brady and Peyton Manning in the training videos have vision where literally, you just look down the center of the field and you can hit the reciever anywhere on the field without having to look at them if they are past 3 yards. To look at a reciever you hold and press the button over the players head to look at him. On All-Madden, if the pass route is done being run, you have to move the right stick and aim it over them to pass it. What's horrible about this is R is pump fake, meaning as soon as you let go of it, he pump fakes. Say you have the thing on the Black button reciever, you held down R to change to another reciever, but you realize "hey black is gonna be open long" well if you hit R and black hoping it'll prevent you from not pump faking, your wrong. You have to select another reciever, then reselect the black reciever, and the vision cone doesn't turn that fast, so yea you'll be sacked a bunch of times for that reason.

This year Madden introduced the truck stick like it's something amazing and never done before, well, surprise, 2k5 had it with the Y button. Absolutely no difference except you use the right stick. You can also stop on a dime, but oh yea, 2k5 had that as well. Sounds more like "catching up" instead of innovation. Overall, the game should get a 3.0 in gameplay, but I penalize it a mere 1 point for a) lack of innovation and b)poor execution. It's not unplayable by any means, but the game is overbearing and too difficult for new people to pick up and play. And even when they learn, they still feel like QB Vision is dumb as hell, which it is. Can't turn it off cuz in ranked games online it's required so kind of need to just keep practicing with it. Though one area Madden does better than 2k5, is no franchise bugs and better stats tracking. But other than that, it's !&%$@#* poor lackluster.

Graphics: Well jerseys defintely have more detail. And everything else....yea about the same. OMG the coaches are horribly modeled. 2k5 did a good job on a lot of coaches, Tom Coughlin being one of them. If you see Tom Coughlin in this, his face looks like one of the enemies from Timesplitters if you just changed the color of his skin to more of a green and gave him sharper teeth. None of the coaches are modeled terribly accurate, though I'm glad Shockey's long hair finally looks like hair and not some yellow pixel dandruff. But unfortunately, he just cut his locks so it seems all for naught. Oh yea, did I mention same tackle animations as 05'? *yawn* I love innovation, E-A STYLE!

Audio: Finally, I can turn off most of the rap, some of it though is actually not that bad despite my hatred for anything post 2000-2001 that is rap. The rest of it is punk, excluding the Godsmack and the Disturbed track, both of which are pretty good, but not their most amazing songs either, not by a long shot.

Commentary is garbage, They get stuff wrong all the time, especially on punts. If you field a ball in the end zone, and run it out of bound in the end zone, Michaels says "returned...for a loss of yardage." Oh yea, commentary, so general not in-depth, not funny, and horrible, once again. Madden has some horrible lines this year, which might've been in 05' but who knows. It's all garbage to me. Sound effects are fine, same as always, nothing new.

Suggestions: How bout maybe aiming higher next year? Just once since during this whole era you've shown very little effort. How bout new and innovating instead of new tweaks?

Overall Score: 6.0 / 10 Red Faction II

Overall: This is what happens when you fix something that isn't broken. That thing being GeoMod technology. The gameplay in the first was good, yes, and the story was pretty good, can't argue that, but the GeoMod was awesome. Blasting holes through walls that stretched for miles and miles and miles was just awesome. Especially the driller vehicles, man you could you dig through a cave like nobody's business. So when I heard new and improved GeoMod, I didn't know they meant "sparsely used". Basically, you cant blow through anything, anymore. There are a couple bridges here and there where you can shoot a rocket and blow it up. That's it. I have no idea why this game gets ranked so high. The multiplayer wasn't even that good. I highly recommend playing the first. The multiplayer was better (especially the lobby level with the nuclear launcher was the best EVER) and the storyline was better too.

Gameplay: Well it does have the basics down. Tight controls, unlockables, solid framerate. It's just with the GeoMod being far worse than it's predecesor it's hard not to look at the game as a step backwards. I have no idea what was going through their heads. Like the first one, your just a measely labor worker when a fight with a guard insues, then a riot begins, and you basically just slowly but surely become more badass. I just don't get that feeling from this. It feels like a sub-standard shooting affair. And some of the automatics have like zero range in this game, like need to be point blank to connect a hit kind of low range.

Graphics: Single player looks a lot better than multiplayer. Bots aren't of any particular fun other than maybe than pretending you have real friends. The pictures above guns when you pick up are very obtrusive and can fill up a screen with lots of dropped weapons. However, as single player goes, everythings good even in 2005. Nothing spectacular but still solid enough.

Audio: One area of the game that excels just as well as the first. Voice, music, and sound effects are all solid, though the death grunts/moans just seem overexaggerated and aren't particularly convincing.

Suggestions: Full, extensive use of Geo-Mod, not just in certain areas of the game.

Overall Score: 5.0 / 10 Tetris Worlds: Online Edition

Overall: This feels very identical to the N64 4-player version of Tetris. That's fine by me. The game was free, and before that VERY cheap. The single-player really isn't anything great, but multiplayer is. Online was the best thing for this game cuz you essentially don't have an excuse to not enjoy the best part of the game. But my only complaint is all the gametypes excluding one from the N64 version are in the Xbox version. No new ones. So iono kinda feels like the same game, but still, gotta love the multiplayer.

Gameplay: The premise is simple. Stack up blocks so that rows are completely filled. If a row has a space in it, doesn't break. Also, you can store a piece away in a reserve and bring it back out later. Probably the only different between that and classic Tetris. Oh yea and the quick drop button. Other than that, it plays the same.

However, the multiplayer modes offer some team and vs. varieties. The one that is missing from the N64 version is where you choose which player the junk goes to. Junk is basically however many rows you break, the game calculates that and drops in on another player. The Xbox version it's only random. In the N64 game there was random and choose who you want to junk. The latter was fun because you could just gang up on one friend and laugh at his demise. However, it is understandable in regards to rankings seeing as people could easily boost themselves up by doing that. Still, it retains it's fun and is defintely a challenging but addicting multiplayer game.

Graphics: It's a 2D game so and it's on Xbox so you can't really hold it to the Halo 2/Splinter Cell graphics standard. No special effects on the blocks, just a lot of different backgrounds, or boards, whatever you wish to call'em. I don't remember if you unlocked more backgrounds in single player or if that was the N64 version, sorry it's been a while since I've played.

Audio: It's not annoying, it just fits the game, meaning I don't think I'd enjoy listening to this music outside of the game, but in the game, it just goes along with frantically trying to break as many rows as soon as possible before your opponent.

Suggestions: Though every puzzle game owes it's existance to the original, other games like SPFII and MK:Deception have just added certain elements like the characters and the fighting going on in the background that just make it for more interesting. You guys are gonna have to go back to the drawing board for next-gen, that is if you make another one, and come up with some amazing feature not seen in a puzzle game.

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance II

Overall: After playing Baldur's Gate I on PS2, the ending was great and just had me knawing myself waiting for the opportunity to play the second. And, well, I wasn't too impressed. Defintely some balancing issues in regards to character classes, the gem system is flawed to say the least, defintely not the sequel I was looking for. The graphics are also practically identical to the first, and in some regards I like the first one better, so you'd be better off with that or the Champs of Norrath series on PS2.

Gameplay: It's your typical hack-n-slash affair. The Necromancer is defintely cool looking having his spell book in one hand and his sword in the other. But before long, no matter what spells your jacking up, you want do as much damage as the Warrior/Barbarian class. Why? Once he/she gets the dual-wielding great weapons ability (meaning wielding two two-handed weapons one in each hand) he'll be doing 4 times as much damage as your most powerful spell or attack. On top of that, the Necro relies a lot on MP. The Barbarian can just continue to deal damage and not have to recharge his/her MP. As a result, when your playing multiplayer, unless you can get your friend to sit still and not kill enemies, the Necromancer is generally 3 levels behind him/her. Also, the combinations with the gems is cool like you get fire/ice, yellow fire when you have an earth and fire stone, but there's a point where you'll have a lot of gems and they serve no purpose because after you add 4 to your weapon, it does nothing. It still costs money to put'em on the weapon but after 4 gems there isn't a point, other than free money up. Also, you share money with your partner, which I absolutely hate. It's basically a rush to the shop menu and buy your cool weapon before your friend does.

Graphics: Looks the same if not worse than Baldur's Gate I which is just flat out pathetic. There's no reason the game should've looked the same.

Audio: Music is, decent, not as great as the first, but the voice acting is still strong but the scripting is just decent.

Suggestions: It shows Snowblind knows what their doing and you guys don't after this was made. champs of norrath just demolishes this game.

Overall Score: 7.0 / 10 Spikeout: Battle Street

Overall: There was two reasons I bought this game. One, because the limited release bit was true. There aren't many copies in circulation. That's the reason I kept it. At first it was selling for like $60 on eBay so I was like "oh man it'll be worth so much more", but unlike rare Sega classics like Panzer Dragoon Saga and Shining Force III, this ones a stinker, and that is why it now goes for $20 cuz people probably realize what crap it is. 3D beat'em ups have really had almost 0 success. True there was the Die Hard Arcade, the Dynamite Cop game, and Fighting Force, all of which were pretty decent, but it's just so sad when you play a game like Streets of Rage. Forget Final Fight, anyone who knows anything knows Streets of Rage was the better of the two series. The characters were great, the system was great, it was a challenge (SoR 3 especially). Streets of Rage 2 n' 3 just hold a special place in my heart from my 16-bit days and I have compared every future title to them. So what made SoR such a complete package besides what I mentioned? Well the moves were cool, both the characters specific regular moves and special ones, Axel's obviously being the coolest, as were the hidden characters, Shiva and Roo (and occasionally Ash).

When I first heard about Spikeout, I was just like, "0o0o0o a Sega beat'em up? Sweet!" Everytime I see a 3D beat'em up being advertised I always hear "it's just like Streets of Rage in 3D", and, well, it never is. I'm so let down, nobody shows this genre any respect any more. Why not just make a new Streets of Rage for crying out loud (on top of a new Mutant League and Golden Axe, but I digress)? The graphics and cutscenes look straight from Dreamcast, absolutely weak. It's like the same thing Sega did with Shenmue II and Toe Jam & Earl III and it really gets me steamed. This a decent romp for like 10 mins. cuz in those 10 mins. your like "oh this game could be good" cuz your picking up weapons and your figuring out the combo system, then you realize the combo system is weak, the special moves are all so worthless and horrible looking, there's just nothing you want to do. The multiplayer is split screen as well which is just horrible for this type of game, so I strongly recommend not picking this one up.

Gameplay: All the animations are wonky, the running and jumping animations especially are so messed up your just like "this is not a next-gen game". You essentially do a 5-hit combo over and over and can pickup a plethora of weapons which many you can't execute combos with. The only worth while one is the dual wrenches, but it's such a bitch to get and since the stages are so short, there really isn't a point for all the effort. Each stage introduced you with a map of the stage with an announcer saying "start" "exit" "boss" and showing where they are on the map, they do it for every stage too, it's so straight forward, I'm not a moron. Then each boss is introduced with "BOSS" and a stupid guitar rift. The best strategy is to just grab'em and do your special moves, it does the most damage, and generally it involes you spinning a lot so you do a mess load of damage to everyone around you. However, it isn't all that special looking. You could do just the regular special move, but it does almost no damage and it looks equally unimpressive. My friends were laughing so hard at just everything. I held my head down low after bringing this to a friend's house. You'd be better off using it as a coaster.

Graphics: Dreamcast is the only word I should have to say but unfortunately this requires a minimum of 100 characters.

The graphics are so horrible, the character design is alright for a couple characters, but pretty much downright awful for the majority so you never get that feeling your playing with a badass, enviroments are garbage, just a very ugly, ugly game.

Audio: If I could rate this section lower I could. The voice acting is some of the worst ever, and there a couple lines that just make you cringe and how bad they are scripted. Problem is, if you die, you have to hear the cutscene from the beginning of the level. Ugh. The soundtrack is horrible too with some awful rock rifts and occasional rap beats for a couple cutscenes. Mute has never looked so tempting.

Suggestions: This is what you do. You take the guys that made streets of rage 2 and 3 along with the music composer because the soundtrack was badass especially the boss music, and you make a Streets of Rage 4. I know, it sounds really, really complicated, but I think that's your best bet right now. Between this and Beat Down Fists of Revenge, I think for eternity I'm going to be playing Streets of Rage on emulator and never rent or buy another beat'em up unless it gets perfect 10's across the board. This generation has just been awful to beat'em ups and everyone should be ashamed for making these sorry excuses for games. Excuse me while I try and beat SoR on some other difficulty besides Normal (a feat I've yet to complete w/o cheats, talk about a challenge)

Overall Score: 4.0 / 10 Fable

Overall: Since RPG's generally involve lots of cutscenes or just areas of the game where there a text bubbles, they should A) have a good storyline and B) be lengthy in order to be good. I'm not saying like 80+ hours lengthy, but any RPG I consider a classic is usually longer than 15-20+. Something that takes 10-12 generally isn't a classic even though it could be good, and that is where Fable lies. I traded the game as soon as I beat it cuz there's no incentive to replay after. I mean you get a wicked sword at the end of the game (especially if you are evil), but the game didn't come as advertised. There wasn't an infinite amount of stuff to do like in Morrowind, which is what I was expecting, Morrowind with a better combat system. In the end, I got a good romp of an RPG, but defintely not as amazing as I hoped.

Gameplay: Stuff like fist fighting, getting your nick name changed (which I strongly recommend doing cuz the only thing I heard the first two hours was "chicken...chaser, chicken chaser?" every 3 seconds in a town), drinking, etc. is all fine and dandy, but none of it really helps your character advance into being a more bad-ass character. So then you have the combat, the early enemies are so easy to kill with a crossbow, whenever they charge, just hit'em with an arrow and they stop, shuffle around, and then charge again. It was too easy. Also, the setup was very different from anything else I had played, so it took a while to get used to the controls. I didn't really explore the love aspect so I never had a wife. You can get spells and abilities which excluding like Rage where you guy gets wicked muscular at it's higher levels, I really wasn't too impressed by how any of them looked. I'd say rent this, but with the Lost Chapters coming out soon, I'd rent that instead.

Graphics: Well this is an area you can't really complain about. Some of the spell effects are indeed weak, but the graphics are astounding. All enviroments and characters are beautifully detailed, especially how your characters face changes over time as he develops. My guy was extremely evil. One thing I noticed was that the scars, which you were suppose to obtain only through battle, appear in the same spot no matter where you get hit. But the horns and the red aura, and the tattoos, just make your guy look like one scary m*****f***er. Your characters does grow overtime, though it doesn't seem like more than a day before you've advanced from very young boy to old and experienced magic caster. Defintely a good looking game, though a mess load of light bloom I must say.

Audio: Well just about all the dialogue with villagers and the like is repeated so sometimes you will get a laugh, but once you hear it too much, it starts to get on your nerves, which is why I'm more towards the evil side. When I hear something I hate get repeated, slice and dice baby. Though what is nice is the villagers that look old, weak, or feeble sound it and those that look tough, badass, and could crush you with their two fingers sound it as well. The thunks and cluds of combat aren't anything special, but they aren't too weak.

Suggestions: Ambition and execution. Might wanna do both of'em at the same time if that's how you hyped the game. I wouldn't recommend a sequel mainly because I feel gamers are too disappointed and wouldn't believe anything that was said about the second one.

Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne

Overall: Because the only difference is controls and graphics between the Xbox and PC versions, I got the PC version cuz it came out like 1-2 months before it's console counterparts did and also the mod community prolongs the life of the game a lot. To say I enjoyed Max Payne 2 would be an understatement. Before I even installed a mod, I played the game so much, replaying certain areas just for fun, like where the guy is outside on the scaffold and the game does the slow-mo of him falling down when you shoot him as you watch in awe how amazing the ragdolls are, like the wooden planks and paint cans sometimes falling on top of him. The story is superb, even though some argue the way Max's describes things gives people a headache, Remedy knows this and even pokes fun at themselves on some of the still image TV shows you see some of the characters watching. Bravura, Witherspoon (sp?) Mona, and Vlad's voice acting is all superb. The action and controls are just top notch, The ragdoll effects are also really awesome with the full zoom sniper shot and when you land a headshot watching the guys backflip (sometimes they do sometimes not). Not to mention the unlockable survival mode (forgot the name of it but that's what essentially it is) where enemies constantly spawn is ridiculous amounts of fun. Since this game is most likely the last in the series unfortunately, I'd recommend buying it if you haven't played it. Loads of fun.

Gameplay: You got your usual bullet-time/bullet-dive stuff here, same affair as Max Payne 1, but the ragdoll effects and interaction with the environments have been cranked up greatly. My favorite level was probably the fun house mainly because with the aid of your nades, you can just kick the crap out of everyone without being touched for most of the level. Not to mention I believe it's the first level with the Kalishnokov which is just great hearing it in slow-mo. Another sweet thing in the level is the huge syringe like thing, when you first get there, it unlocks the gate for you when it swing down, even though it appears it'll rip your head off, but later when the cleaners get there and you pull the switch, it just rips right through the cage, knocking down a wall and kill everyone in it's path. It handles pretty much the same as Max Payne 1, but to me, there's nothing wrong with that. I mean it could handle like Enter the Matrix afterall.

Graphics: I love the detail on Max's face. As the game progresses he gets more and more beat up, and just seeing his face up close with all the bandages and blood, it's just amazing how realistic it looks. The only thing graphically that I think didn't get bumped up since MP1 was probably the image quality of the stills on the television, but other than that, the enviroments, the empty shells (there's a lot more the game can handle now), the character models, the explosions, everything just looks better while still retaining the noir setting.

Audio: Voice acting is still top notch and the writing for the story I believe was excellent. The gun sound effects both in and out of bullet-time just sound devastating, maybe not the dual standard pistols, but the desert eagles and all of the automatics pack a nasty punch. The lead track is great too as is the rest of the music.

Suggestions: I really hope this isn't the last one. Please make another one. I know developers don't like to be one dimensional, but look at the sales! And the fact you got a movie based on the game coming out! Please do not abandon this series.

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 Doom 3

Overall: Man I had so much fun with this. Multiplayer, being only 4 people, wasn't exactly my cup of tea, on top of the fact every game I was in the lowest ping I saw was 74 but it would fluctuate up to 120 all the time, so I basically spent my whole time in single player.

People with motion sickness be warned, my friend can't even play this game more than 20 minutes without taking an hour break. The weapons are great, especially the chainsaw which I just love the sound of it tearing through flesh and scraping the walls and ground. The graphics are really good, i don't see what everyone's problem with'em are, and the story is barebones but the cutscenes where you run into bosses and such leave you feeling like your underpowered and a bit worried. I died maybe once/twice and that was because of falling into pits and such, but the game was still challenging, I was on the verge of death a lot. If you haven't played it, I strongly recommend renting this a couple times.

Gameplay: Multiplayer, like I said, 4 people, not all that great of pings, and just randomly teaming up with some jackass isn't too enticing, on top of the fact if your host you can kick people out when your losing so your not credited a loss. Pretty worthless in my book.

The single player though, is really intense, even if you stop playing for a while and load the game back up, within minutes you'll be in the game quick. Most of the time you'll be switching between your weapons using your D-Pad (which btw you can program) or the Y button (I think Y, might be B). The only thing I didn't like was the load times with the PDA having to check security codes and stuff out a lot. Some of the audio logs are great to listen to mainly because the voice acting is stellar. The audio logs for the guy trapped in hell were particularly convincing. Oh yea, you end up going to hell in the game which is pretty insane. Like I said chainsaw is just an awesome weapon, rocket launcher is alright I guess, blood effects are some of the best I've seen, very detailed. One of the best parts of the game was where this big enemy with like metal rear legs, sees me in the room and tries ramming the door in, the thing bends to the point of breaking and then he just stops. so your like ok, so I presume there's an alternate exit. And as I'm looking for one, he rams through the glass and had me trapped in the corner. That was probably the closest I came to dying cuz I was getting reamed bad. Overall, great experience, very immersive (despite a very loose story), tight controls, cool weapons, and nice gore.

Graphics: I thought everything looked great, the HUD, especially on the PDA was sweet, blood effects are just awesome, and characters models are great, though they do seem to take a bit of detail away for multiplayer. I can't complain though, I love it looks. Oh and I didn't mention the lighting. Love the lighting with all the flickering lights and constantly pulling your flashlight out.

Audio: Love the weapons sound effects, love the enemy screechs and yells, love the background blood curdling screams, voice acting is good, overall solid.

Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 Conker: Live and Reloaded

Overall: My BFD cartridge is probably partially melted in my N64 along with Goldeneye and WCW/NWO Revenge. Even though the framerate was horrible, there were a ton of options and the whole Nazi Tediz vs. the Squirrels was great.

So what turns into a sequel turns into a remake with tons of added content which turns into basically the same single player experience with a new multiplayer mode. That's the story of CLR. Slowly but surely turned less ambitious in its development cycle. I did have high expectations, mainly because of how much fun the original was but, iono I don't really like CLR. Especially with multiplayer. The 2 player split-screen doesn't even take up the whole screen and you can't even go online with 2 people on one console. No downloadable content or clans either. Sheesh, what a load of crap.

Gameplay: Obviously you got to seperate the single player and multiplayer. The multiplayer has a HUD and plays like a behind the shoulder third person shooter. The single player plays the same as the original which was just a platformer.

One thing about the single player is how much more has been bleeped out since the N64 version. The Great Mighty Poo song is censored to the point you probably don't know, unless you heard the original, what obscentities he is saying. Then there's the fact excluding the minor alterations at the beginning of the game, the single player experience is identical. That part really gets me especially seeing how much time they had to work on this. The blood and poo effects are equally unimpressive.

Now multiplayer. First thing I notcied, headshots rip off the whole head. In BFD, you could shoot off chunks, the 2 halves of the head and the lower jaw where you saw parts of the brain. Now, all you see is an unsatisfying red mercury shooting from the neck. Class based games are fun, but the fact it's your only choice for multiplayer seems like a step back from the N64 version. Yes it's good, but it just lacks customization.

Graphics: Excluding the very unimpressive poo and blood effects, kind of hard to argue anything else. The characters models are amazing, enviroments are beautifully details, lighting is excellent, the game just looks amazing, it's just a shame there really isn't anything great and new gameplay components to go with it.

Audio: Whatever they did, the voice acting sound like garbage compared to the N64 version. It truely sounds like a whole new person doing Conker's voice. The dialogue and sound effects are fine though. None of the guns, excluding maybe the rocket launcher, have a satisfying gun power noise to them. The Grunt automatic/semi/single gun sounds like a pea shooter, and his grenade launcher, though it does a ton of damage, isn't that great either. Could go down the whole list but you get my idea.

Suggestions: So no guest or other XBL user on one system, no downloadable content, no clans, a stripped down multiplayer and the same single player experience, count me out please. I haven't played this game 3 weeks after launch and have no desire to ever touch it again.

Overall Score: 6.0 / 10 Burnout 3: Takedown

Overall: I really don't get why I see arcade machines in the mall for NFS:HP2 but not Burnout 3. To be honest, it was hard not to sell this series off as just a game with car crashes. Burnout 1 and 2 I used both a rental on and enjoyed it to a degree but really it wasn't that amazing. Burnout 2 I spent a lot of time in the crash mode where you and someone else take turns crashing, but I really didn't enjoy the racing aspect. Then here comes Burnout 3 like out of nowhere. I wasn't even following the game cuz I figured "it'll be just slightly better than Burnout 2". Then I'm on a certain game site that has one of those read our full review and in the brief tidbit it says something about a new crash feature, so I checked it out thinking maybe it's worth another rental to check this crash feature out. Well, I open it up to find a score of 9.5 I was astonished, the graphics were amazing, the movies of the crashes had the best debris/particle effects ever, my jaw dropped. I rented the game 3 times straight after then picked it up around christmas. To say I didn't have fun would be an understatement. And to my surprise, I was spending the most time in the single player mode racing then just watching mindless crashes. The game is $20 now and even with Revenge around the corner, if you haven't seen or played this game at all, you have to play it. Burnout 3 takes the series to a whole new level where it's more than worthy of being a franchise for any console, and for the first time I'm really looking forward to the next entry in the series.

Gameplay: So what's so great about it? Well first you gotta talk about aftertouch. Only useable in single-player or a mode where there's one human user in the game, it basically slows down time and then with the analog stick you move your car, or should I say your wreckage, in any direction. It's not extreme to the extent where you can wind back and forth in a 5 lane road on a whim, but it's enough where a guy is close behind and you wanna toss your wreckage in front of him and take'em out, you can. It does take some getting used to in order to be deadly with it, cuz at first you'll often over shoot your target be it a pedestrians car or your opponent. The single player is fun (excluding the DJ, who's really just annoying and pointless and I hope they have'em rung up by his pulse some where so he doesn't make it into Revenge) unlocking new courses, new cars, etc. What I like is the way they have it set up to unlock the Dominator cars (the ones with the flame) in that you always have a 1 on 1 race with them and essentially have to beat'em to get the car. Their cars generally have the least control (though depending on what difficulty it's on, you wouldn't know the way the computer drives) but have the most speed, which generally means, for most of the car classes not all of'em, you'll basically be trying to just take'em down before they pass you, and keep doing it like 6-10 times a race depending on the length of the course. One that took me forever to unlock was the US Indy style car. You basically have to do 2 laps without crashing otherwise you have absolutely no shot. However, with boost this car travels 230+MPH so it's really hard to avoid traffic. And just like this one I had difficulty with you'll find the rest of the game is like that as well, where the challenging races straddles the line of 'frustrating, I don't want to play anymore' and 'omg I was so close, just oneeee more try'.

Lots of cars, lots of tracks (both for races and crash modes), and team modes online make for a great title.

Graphics: This is one of those games where despite the head-to-head article at IGN where the graphics are very close in both versions, you'll be so much happier with the Xbox version. I played the PS2 version for the first time last night, and I was amazed at how bad the graphics are. Tunnels and roads look horrendous, the cars jaggies are very noticable on any zoomed in camera shot, and there is wicked slow down in crash modes online for the PS2 version. The Xbox version on the other hand, features some amazing car models and pretty !&%$@#* good environments, and of course, the amazing debris/particle effects you witness after each crash. Iono if this cranks all the juice out of the Xbox, but it's really friggin close.

Audio: A game like this if the car crash sound effects sucked, the game would not be fun. The first couple times I played this game, just hearing some of the crashes made me cringe or laugh hysterically at how amazing it was cuz I had never seen anything like it in a video game before. Just hearing the collision, watching the sparks when the car is dragging, and looking at your beauty now totaled is really borderline lifelike, excluding the part where you have to worry about if people are ok. The soundtrack I surprisingly didn't mind, but there is a lot of punk, and generally I don't like it, but The FUps title track was good and I liked hearing the Ramones on there as well.

Suggestions: it's hard to suggest what to do when the game reaches immersion and graphical boundaries unseen before. Just keep on keeping on I guess.

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 ESPN NHL 2K5

Overall: Three things that !&%$@#* me off about this game are 1) the sweep move which almost always guarantees a goal 2) The camera in the Gauntlet mini-game is horrible and 3) The franchise glitch where if a team has more than 3 injuries on the roster the game freezes everytime. However, ESPN still manages to be a solid title.

Gameplay: Franchise is great (excluding that bug), the mini-games are insane fun, the dream team mode is a good challenge at times, and the controls are great. Last years EA NHL was horrible, I don't think they know which direction their heading in, arcade or sim. ESPN is defintely more of a sim, but it still is fun. First, they added some checking animations, not a lot, but more than ESPN hockey which had the over the boards animation and the fall on your knees animations which I saw 90% of the time and drove me crazy. When I first started playing, I noticed noone was falling down, just guys bouncing off each other. Well if you go into the gameplay options and turn checking all the way up, guys like Pavel Bure can lay down big hits which I didn't like so I turned it down to notched and now guys like Pronger and Chara lay down big hits while the little guys sometimes lay down a big one themselves. Goalies sometimes are so sick my jaw drops watching them topple around the crease, then there are times where you shoot from center ice and they miss a glove save. Don't ask me how, but it does happen, even guys like Martin Broduer and Marty Turco. The deking stick is great, basically it moves the puck in a direction to avoid poke checks and with the modifer you do dekes and the like. Works out great, just need to know which deke you'll be doing when you flick the stick in a certain direction cuz some take longer than others.

The fighting system defintely isn't great, I loved the NHL2004 one and the Hitz Pro one as well, this is decent, it's not like the old PS1 affair where you just hit to buttons really fast, just a lot of backing up and sneaking in for an attack.

Like I said the minigames are a blast, great party fun.

I'd recommend getting this, but the new one comes out in like 2 weeks for $20 so there really isn't a point.

Graphics: Iono what it is but hockey players rarely look like how they look in real life. I mean in Madden they get it down good sometimes, but hockey games are almost NEVER. This again is the case, you see a lot of the same faces. However, the jerseys got some nice detail as does the ice reflection, though the ice generally only looks worn down until the camera goes away from the ice, meaning each play stoppage, it looks new again, though I heard this year they are adding something to that effect.

Audio: All the NHL Hockey Tonight music is there, crowd chants are great, often chanting for goalies after they have a huge night. Slap shots, the glass breaking sound, announcers, are all pretty solid. Though Thorne and Clement repeat a lot of what they say, what lines they did record were solid enough you shouldn't mind.

Suggestions: Fix that franchise bug, make the ice look worn down, how bout the PPM NHL is adding, I wanna be able to hurt guys with a slap shot too!

Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 Pariah

Overall: So your transferring this girl who's got a virus and she's in cryostasis, the plane gets wrecked, you get seperated and find her. You find out through the cutscene that the disease could be transferred through blood contact, which immediately after, she gets shot in the shoulder and blood splatters on your face. Probably the one and only interesting cutscene.

Gameplay: The single player I could stand for a lil while then I just got sick of how pointless it was. The story I thought was cool at the beginning but it just really loses interest basically after she gets shot in the beginning. Your standard FPS affair excluding the fact you can get upgrades. Mainly stuff light faster fire or quick reload, nothing amazing. Vehicle controls are eck, feel nothing like controlling a warthog, though it doesn't have to, it defintely isn't as tight as the vehicle controls in Halo 2. Multiplayer lets you use custom maps which wouldn't be a problem except that's all people play and a lot of'em suck. Then people are douches and don't let you take certain classes that can destroy the big vehicles so they either just kick you or if you stick around you get throttled. Hated the online experience.

Graphics: I actually thought the visuals were pretty decent. Nothing made me drop my jaw in awe but likewise nothing made me go that's awful so i guess it gets the job done.

Audio: Gun sound effects are so worthless. Nothing sounds like your shooting a damage dealing weapon. Music was pretty good with music kicking up at intense moments. Voice acting wasn't bad, not close to the best though.

Suggestions: Stick to UC/UT, GoW

Overall Score: 5.0 / 10 Mortal Kombat: Deception

Overall: It's been a while since I've played this but I must say I had a lot of fun. The story mode where you run around with a lil bald headed kid (forgot his name) and become a fighter is pretty lame, especially since the walking and such is very weird, thus my concern with MK:Shaolin Monks, but fortunately, after playing the demo for that game I no longer have any concern.

But yea three nice additions undoubtedly are the puzzle game which is almost as good as Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo, the 3 counters you get each round, and online play which sadly, noone is on. If you haven't played it, defintely pick it up, lots of unlockables and fun mini-games.

Gameplay: The game still has the standard 3 fighting style which is defintely good, but on the same token, if there is only one person who memorize his characters multi-style combo, the other person is at a severe disadvantage as these do the most damage. Also, like in DA, once you get going, it's really hard to stop the combo, unless of course you have a counter on hand which like I said earlier, is a nice feature.

As for the puzzle game, there aren't cubes like in SPFIIT but what makes this unique is the special move each characters have. Sub-Zero freezes all the players blocks preventing him/her from breaking them, Cindel (SP?) rearranges the opponents blocks so any sort of massive break you had is pretty much shot to shit. Some of the special moves take forever to charge, like Cindel's, others are a lot faster. It's essentially the more powerful the longer it takes to charge. Also you only have like a 15 second time frame to use it, so you can't wait till your opponents column before you use the special move. The second unique thing is the fatality at the end of each stage. Very entertaining and a nice way to rub it in your buddy that he just got his !&%$@#* handed to him. Puzzle game alone was worth my money, I just got a nice fighting game on top of it.

Graphics: Nothing spetacular, but nothing horrible. Love the insane, over-the-top blood. The blood can obviously be toned down if you prefer or changed to a different color. Basically for those who are kids and don't want mom and dad to think your playing an ultra-violent game. I didn't notice lag in online play WHEN people did play.

Audio: Nothing changed from DA really. The sound really isn't detrimental or annoying, it just really does add anything to the game, like any 0o0o0o's or ahhhhhh's for anything.

Suggestions: Game was fine, might wanna update the fight system. I know don't fix what isn't broken, but there should be more than just one multi-style combo cuz just executing that each round gets real boring after a while.

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 Halo 2 Multiplayer Map Pack

Overall: Well the maps will soon be free. Was it worth paying the dough? To a degree, I'm glad I have all the practice on the maps so I'm not at a disadvantage since I presume many if not all XBL users purchased this map pack in some form. But since you could only use'em in Team Preview and Slayer Preview, it was kind a bummer. On top of the fact, some maps really suck, like Backwash, which was suppose to have so much fog you could barely see in front of you which is a load of crap. The only one I found really unique was Terminal w/ the whole train, that's an interesting premise and defintely a cool level. But yea just wait till these are free, they are great maps.

Gameplay: Backwash just sucks. The weapon placement, the choice of weapons, I really hate the map. None of my kills look cool, it's just a small, boring map.

Terminal has some cajones. The train, all the vehicles, the announcer warning when the train is coming in. Great weapon placement, I love it, has gotta be one of my favorite maps.

Relic is a good slayer map but I really don't like it for assault or ctf. On assault, once the person gets up there with the bomb and dies, it's just too easy to defend, especially if you got a sniper rifle.. With CTF, once you grab the flag and toss it over the edge, it's too easy to win.

Gemini I've only played with Slayer, but it's a pretty enjoyable map. There's generally a rush for the overshield by both teams and then a big fire fight at the beginning of the round.

Elongation is slightly better than Longest, but it's still garbage IMO.

Turf, Sanctuary, Containment, and Warlock have all been free for a while so I won't write about them.

Graphics: Nothing new or spectacular. Obviously the train and the guilty spark at Backwash, Gemini has the statue with the halo holograph, and Turf has the swinging doors, but besides that, nothing that stands out drastically, though the maps still manage to maintain a degree of uniqueness.

Audio: Not many new noises, excluding like I said the announcer at Terminal and Guilty Spark at Backwash, but besides that it's all the same Halo 2 sounding goodness you've been used to since last Nov.

Suggestions: Nice variety of maps, decent price too. Should do another one.

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 Halo 2

Overall: People with all this standbying/hacking complaints mustn't realize this stuff happens in every XBL title. Only difference is, Bungie, with the blue screen and the connection bars next to gamertags let you know when it's occuring. RS3 and many other XBL titles just show it as a simple lag spike. These problems are prevalent in most XBL titles except A) like I said before, now you know it's happening and B) Bungie is always doing something about it.

With that being said, Halo 2 is in everyway better than the original. So many people love to argue, but the fact still remains the story (despite the cliff hanger at the end) and the multiplayer outdo the original. The graphics are amazing, the netcode is the most rock solid I've seen in any XBL title, the story is great (maybe not better than the original, but still awesome and really isn't touched by any other Xbox title other than a few select RPG's and the original), and of course balance, something severely lacking from the original pistol whoring days of Halo 1. True, on certain big maps, if you have the sniper you have a huge advantage, but there are ways of countering that. So overall, just buy the game. It's thee reason for owning the game.

Gameplay: Gotta love the addition of dual wielding, sometimes it's a bit finicky when a bunch of weapons are grouped together, but for the most part works great. Customization of your characters colors and logos helps you stand out. Many of the maps are enjoyable and well laid out (excluding Waterworks which I think just sucks no matter how many players are in the game). Certain things that are a little bothersome though are superjumping and standbying, which used to be a pain in the arse but it's cut down drastically. Again, the layout is perfect with the B Melee, A Jump, Left-Click Crouch Right-Click Zoom R Fires L Grenades etc. etc., the usual affair, but still works great. Plenty of customization in game options too to make some really awesome game modes for LAN parties. The balance of the maps with weapons placement and vehicles choice has generally been perfect excluding BR on Ascension since the Banshee barely took any damage but that's been since changed. So overall, it's a complete package. Online co-op would be nice, but you'll spend too much time building your rank in other modes.

Graphics: The graphics are still great, my jaw doesn't drop like when I first saw it, but my judgement of other games graphics is much more strict since I've been playing this for so long. Excluding some of the ground textures, the characters, environments, guns, explosions, etc. are all just look great and you gotta love the detail on everything.

Audio: Voice acting is like the top-tier in regards to games, really can't get much better. Explosions caused by rockets or grenades still sound great on surround sound and just fill the lil pyro in you with glee even after all this time. I still love hearing a guy talking trash on XBL and when he's in the middle of a sentence you just hear a death scream. Soundtrack is great as well, all the music seems in place too, meaning it's not like they put a soft song when your chargin in against 2 Wraiths and 10 Elites.

Suggestions: Make a sequel and maybe incorporate some more customization to characters and maybe a map editor. That would be sick.

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 Toejam and Earl 3: Mission To Earth

Overall: For a person that played (and still plays on his emulator) TJ&E and TJ&E: Panic on Funkatron, I was looking forward to this for months. However, the reviews were very average and Gamespot even awarded it most disappointing Xbox Game of the Year. But I had to find out for myself. And I really really gave this one a chance hoping it would grow on me, but I returned it and rented MK: DA. This game veers a lot away from the originals and was very disppointing to me. However, if you've never played the first two, you most likely would enjoy it.

Gameplay: Firs thing that bugged me was the dialogue and the dancing. In the old days, my bro always took TJ and I took Earl. When we tried this out, we both agreed TJ was defintely 50 times worse. We hated how he talked, how he acted, and his choice of words in dialogue just sucked. Earl was still cool though :) . Once we got passed the horrible FMV sequences, we started looking for the records. The controls in the game are fine and I was actually rather pleased. Once we got to the first mission, however, the stupidity comes in to play. Your mission: spray little fiary dust on humans and make them funky. Besides the fact it was amazingly easy and as fun as castrating yourself, combat was terrible. I was expecting to throw cans at the boogieman and the people with the cameras like in Panic on Funkatron. Instead move your arm sideways and throw fairydust. Now I thought it's just the first board combat will improve. We upgraded our guys, got the spring shoes, fought with the boogiemen, converted a bunch of chickens into funky, and the combat still sucked. All you did was spray fairydust on pretty much every board. The upgrade just made it so you could spread it over a wider distance. There was no challenge at all. Talking to the humans after they have been "funkified" is funny like "My mommy says you owe us money" but the fact is they repeat the same lines a lot. It's like they didn't add any since the DC version. The xbox can fit a lot more audio. Another thing is those 3 singing...blob choir alien before each mission. WHY WHY WHY??? No point in having them at all. Just to annoy me and wanna saw my ears off at the very sound of their voices. Although gameplay is still decent, you expect it to be better than it was 10 years ago on a system that had a lot less power. And since I was very diappointed, I gave it a 1.

Graphics: Graphics are a mixed bag. I like the whole theme of everything and the enviroments. Some textures are just plain shoddy. Character models are nice.

Audio: The only thing I can appalaud are in game sound effects. Those are pretty good. However, the rap music, voice acting, the three singing blobs, and repetitive one liners all just flat out suck. I mean if TJ&E are trying to act like rappers at least A) sound like goofy white guys trying to be rappers or B) Be rappers and have some funny sayings. This game does not do either.

All I can say is those who have played either of the first 2, veer away from this one. For those who haven't played the first two, you may actually like it. I'd defintely recommend a rental.

Suggestions: All I can say is end the franchise. For players like me who played the past 2 titles, you have scarred this franchise. I can't even look at Toe Jam and say he's so cool with his third leg. Now he's just an annoying character that doesn't belong anywhere. I suggest making combat more than funkifying people with fairy dust and I suggest you change the game a lot. This looks very much like the DC version I saw at IGN.

Overall Score: 6.0 / 10 Kung Fu Chaos

Overall: This game doesn't play bad nor is there anything wrong with the concept. It's just when you go through the whole singe player and play every board in multiplayer the game just gets old real fast. I honestly have no interest in playing this game ever again. It's just so boring now.

Gameplay: Getting 5 stars on every movie took me about a day. And before you beat everything the game is quite fun. Plus, Shao Ting is funny as hell. I love the training ones where he starts telling a story and you doze off into training and when you awake he's saying something and when you can start understanding him again he goes "..and that's why I'll never use a public toilet again" LOL it's just some great stuff. He is a bit of s terotype Chinese guy so I can see why they got complaints about the game but I just think overall the developers loved kung fu movies (I mean just look at the titles instead of the Legend of the Drunken Boxer you have the legen of the drunken bastard) The game is funny and is quite enjoyable but I don't know when it just got so boring. I don't even like playing multiplayer. Don't get me wrong, this is a great game it's just the lasting appeal isn't there.

Graphics: I love the graphics. They aren't detailed but for the purpose of looking cartoonish the graphics are great. I also love the cheap moviesets. I get a laugh whenever I'm on the space ship with a piece of wallpaper scrolling in the background.

Audio: Excellent job. Punching, kicking special moves, and music all sound like they came straight out of a kung fu movie. Excellent for the game.

Suggestions: If there is anyway you can make the game last longer I would appreciate it. I can't really think of any ideas.

Overall Score: 5.0 / 10 Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon

Overall: I won't be too detaile din this review since I haven't played this in a while plus I was rather disgusted with how it played.

Out of all the Tom Clancy games I've played, this has probably got to be my least favorite. My biggest complaint is the camera view. I can't stand having an f'n big circle in the center of the screen and not even see shell ejection or my bullets being fired from my gun. And the recoil is so minor you'd think you were firing an automatic Nerf gun (actually there's one other reason you'd assume this but I'll discuss that in sound)

Gameplay: I can't really remember single-player but I did play co-op for a while and do remember that. Each player gets 3 members to suit up (i.e. clothing and guns). Unlike the Rainbow Six series, there is no planning just a mission briefing and then you start. Again, with the perspective. This is alright for Rainbow Six which just had a little red dot in the center but that was cool when it came out back then. But it's 2003 and I don't find it cool. I need a 3rd person or first person where I can see my gun. For one, I feel like I'm traveling through f'n quick sand I'm moving so slow. The recoil on the big blue circle reticle is horrible. What I strongly dislike about this game is I can't find guys. Although I'm playing SOF II right now and guys are in camo, very rarely do they line up there shot where they hit me on their first shot. In this however, if you miss spotting someone and there are ni ibjects between him and you they hit you on first shots fired. My personal preference is I hear shots fired and take cover and look for the guy. In this I get hit and hit and hti and hit and mainly my computer AI teammates get the kills in outdoor areas. When I played though, there was absolutely noone playing Ghost Recon. I've noticed though since playing Ghost Recon has gained quite a lot of popularity so chances are you'll find a game. Eventually we found like three but each one sucked not to mention 2 people can't play on the same system online. Overall, few XBL games, very bad choice of not including a 3rd or gun in first person, and slow as death movement, just makes this game seem so long and boring.

Graphics: This is a strong point of this game. Although I dislike it, character models were pretty well done and the enviroments were alright as well. Not amazing or great, but nothing that made you cringe at ugliness.

Audio: This category could be great. Ambience, talking, and radio communication are all great, but the problem is with the guns. Just like you'd expect from a realistic tactical shooter, the sounds are a bit quieter. Nothing wrong with that. I loved it in Rougue Spear and Rainbow 6. But it's been a while since both have been out and even though I still like the silenced gun shots, the death animations plus the lousy recoil make it feel like you killed an enemy with (like I said earlier) an automatic nerf gun. So overall, sounds and voice are fine, just death animations and bad recoil take away any sense of damage they do.

Suggestions: Offer a different camera view. I love Raven Shield merely for the fact the first person has a gun. It's just personal preference. Also, keep up the good job with the graphics.

Overall Score: 3.0 / 10 Rocky

Overall: Having not played a boxing game since KO Kings 2002 and seeing so many things how about this game does a good job of being a game based on a movie, I decided to give it try. First off, I love the Rocky movies. I, II, III, IV (one of the few people I know who did), and even V! (hahaha j/k) None the less the Rocky movie series is great. The Movie Mode isn't as in-depth as reviews made it out to be, but the short movie clip right before the big boss fight basically sums up all that happened in the movie. In the end, Rocky delivers a good haymaker with it's very good controls, having all the characters from the movies, and awesome bruising and cuts.

Gameplay: Rocky has a practice mode, a movie mode that spans over all five (yes even Rocky V) movies, a tournament mode (to unlock you must beat the game on normal), and a Vs. mode . However, there are only a couple fighter to choose so it's recommended to beat the single-player.

The Movie Mode does not instantly pit you against the big fight character of each movie. Instead, you move your way up via fighting jobbers. Now these fighters were either A) Seen in the brief clip in Rocky III when he's fighting a bunch of weak opponents B) Mentioned by name in the movie but never seen or C) completely made up. You only get 2 continues (at least on normal) so do your best not to get your butt kicked. After each victory, you get to train. Some involve rotating and doing combos others are buttons smashers and other recommend you press a certain punch when asked. I'll admit my favorites are the red punching bag and the one where you rotate and do combos. But the situps and jumping rope or so !&%$@#* tough for me. I'd also like to let you know now, if you mess up training, I strongly suggest retraing. My first 4 attempts I messed up big time and basically evry fight to the end I was at a disadvantage but probably wouldn't have been if I didn't mess up four times. To retrain just quit and reload your game. After you beat the game, almost all characters unlocked (you have to beat the game on the other two difficulties to unlock Mickey, the Rocky Statue, and some other one. You also unlock all arenas. Although I hated Rocky V, it's great to fight at the street fight arena. I always take the Rocky Statue and pound the !&%$@#* out of my opponents. Boy are there faces bruised. Speaking of which, Rocky features the best cut and bruising in a boxing game. Though blood doesn't drip every where, you can see a cut with blood on a boxers face. The tournament is also great if you have a bunch of friends over and want to reign a champion.

Rocky's controls are great too. There are tons of combos and although not a lot of skill is involved in winning a match, you can't smash the buttons if you wanna win against the AI or against a human who has some experience with the game (particularly a human who knows how to block well). You have X and Y doing high punches, A and B doing low punches, and L modifying punches to uppercuts and strong rib punches. I didn't train at all and I learned a two high punch to thee low punch combo in no time. This is great for working the head and the lower body.

Now this game isn't perfect, but the gameplay gets a 5.0 cause this is one of the video games based on movies that does justice for a movie. Only 2 minor complaints are lasting appeal may faulter for single player but multiplayer is always a blast and the lowest a player can get scored is 8 in a round.

Graphics: This game is overall very good. Characters models and faces are accurate depictions of their real life counterparts, the audience is detailed (they look somewhat like Max Payne character models IMO), and arenas are good looking too. Not Xbox bliss, but seeing a detailed audience is easy on the eyes.

Audio: Sound is great. All main characters have their theme music and attire from whatever Rocky they were in. The ring announcer does a good job of introducing the fighters and getting the crowd going. Impact of punches has a nice sounding thump or pop or pow and there are occasional grunts and moans from a fighter taken straight from the movie (a nice touch I must say).

Suggestions: You really can't do a sequel but if you make another boxing game with any franchise, just make the game have a more lasting appeal for single player.

Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance

Overall: After playing the first 2 MK's, I was dis appointed in MK3 MK4 and any other MK Ultimate Trilogy etc. games. So when MK: DA came out I was kinda reluctant to even rent this. After playing single player a little, and vs. mode with my bro quite a bit, I have to say MK:DA sets itself apart from otehr good fighters. If you like 3D fighters, MK:DA's tight control system, easy to learn combos, great use of 3 fighting styles, and excellent graphics for a multi-console game will not disappoint.

Gameplay: There are several modes to choose. You can practice your moves against an opponent. Useful if you wanna just mess around or try the combos in the move-list when you pause. Konquest lets you go through training stages where your usage of executing combos are put to the test. This helps you nail down combos to perfection and unleash a serious a$$-whoopin on someone. The single player mode is pretty much the same as the original MK. Slowly move your way up through mroe and more difficult opponents. The only difference is you get to see the difficulty percentage, a 3D view of the level you will fight at (it's underneath the characters picture), and a little story background for your character at the beginning and the end. In both the Konquest and Single player modes you get coins. However, there are several different types of coins each category of coin unlocking something different in the Krypt. In the Krypt, there are coffins labeled from AA to ZZ. Each lettered coffin can unlock something from level art, to past MK photos, and also characters and levels. There are some that have nothing it them as well.

Gameplay is fun and responsive. I just want to note if you have one of them original power pad controllers, they suck for this game. You gotta smash the crap outta the buttons and the loose joystick doesn't help much with combos that require the joystick to move in a certain direction. The first thing you'll notice is your character's fihgting style at the bottom. Each character has three fighting styles. You can change from one style to the next via the L button. What's so great about having three fighting styles is it's so easy to execute a multi-fighting-style combo. I like the usage of weapons in MK:DA it increases damage more than regular attacks and you can stab people with the sword but it lowers your defense and anytime you are attacked your health goes down faster. After playing single-player it's kinda gettting old but I increased the difficulty and it's keeping me challenged. As for 2-player vs. mode, it is fun as hell and could be played for hours and days without getting boring. I also forgot toe mention each character only has one fatality and no babalities or animalities or any other ones from past MK games.

Graphics: There are many levels of blood in the game and by default I believe it's on the highest setting of blood. The blood flows out like a river and drips down the character and stains the ground. Although not the most realistic looking blood, it sure as hell looks cool though. Graphically, the game looks fine and dandy. Not Xbox perfection, but very high quality and better than a lot of other games out there. Character models are excellently done. Enviroments are also very sleek and sexy. Shang Tsung's level has souls he has taken flying through the hall and as they past by you can hear the screams. very cool, but at the same time creepy as hell.

Audio: Sound effects are fine. You get the appropriate punch, kicks, grunts, screams, and thuds you'd expect from an arcade fighter like this. Didn't really pay attention to the music but it hasn't annoyed me so I guess music is fine as well.

Suggestions: I'm not sure if this would work well for the MK series but very few fighters have a 4 player tag team mode.

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 Conflict: Desert Storm

Overall: I was so excited for this game. I mean all the talk about 4 player co-op and killing Iraqis was so enticing. However, there are just some rough spots that really bug me in all categories. Desert Storm coulda been so much more. However, the announcement of a sequel makes me think everything will be fixed.

Gameplay: You've probably heard this already but just so you know there is only a campaign mode. No deathmatch system link, Xbox Live, etc. You can play by yourself or with three of your friends. If you play by yourself, the first few missions involve rescuing, giving backup, or meeting up with your teammates. You can either be SAS or Delta Force.

The gameplay however just doesn't feel right. First, your target always has trouble or locks on to the wrong enemy. Many times I find my icon locking on to someone far away and forcing myself to manually aim in the first person mode. This is quite frustrating as you'd expect the auto-aim to be good but instead serves the purpose of being annoying. The draw distance is also a problem. Though a lot better on Xbox than PS2, you still run into instances where your being shot and you can't see the enemy. Drives me nuts. The game is also kinda easy. I feel the game gives each character WAAAAY too many health packs. You can kill people you have to transport and heal them 5 times and still have plenty extra at the end of the mission. Another thing to is headshots don't always result in instant kills. Plus, the game can be completed fairly quickly and once it's over there really is no point in playing again. No replayability plus buggy aim and terrible draw distance really bring down gameplay but fortunately 4 player co-op saves the day...at least a little.

Graphics: ACK! Hidden and Dangerous on Dreamcast had better graphics. The game just looks so cruddy. They aren't the worst ever but they are basic and on top of that really ugly. Blood effects are also kind of lame. Overall, the worst point of the game.

Audio: The weapons aren't loud and noisy like an FPS but are basically the ones you'd expect out of a tactical game. Thank god for custom soundtracks cause the standard music is pretty crappy. Explosions are also kinda weak. Although not the best sound, it's not the worst either.

Suggestions: How bout some system link support? Defintely make the next one longer OR have downloadable campaigns or missions.

Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 TimeSplitters 2

Overall: Purchasing several launch PS2 titles, the only one I found myself coming back to other than Madden was Timesplitters. It just had so much to offer. From co-op play, to the level editor, and 12 (or was it 16?) bots in multiplayer. And once you beat the game to unlock the challenge mode, there was just so much more to unlock. TS2 has all these features just like its predecessor and although defintely not the best FPS, gameplay is fast as hell the and the game stays at a rocks-solid 60fps. I recommend renting this first to see if this is your cup-o-tea.

Gameplay: First off, no Xbox Live support. Not a huge bummer. System link support is in, but defintely isn't as fun as I thought it would be.

The single player story consists of traveling to differemt areas in different time periods to collect these green shards. To be honest the story isn't that strong but at least there is one as TS1 didn't have a story at all. The first mission is amazing. You start off with a sniper rifle and a silenced pistol and this radar computer type thing. First thing I wanted to see is if the computer responds to each bullet (i.e. shoot in the arm he clutches it, shoot'em in the head he flies back) and for the most part they do. however, I don't recall ever falling upon an enemy gimping after being shot in the leg like you would see in a game like SOFII. The first automatic you come across is like AFK7 Soviet you'd find in Goldeneye except with a grenade launcher attached to it. very nice :D . It's nice having explosive weapons on the first levell insated of having to progress through 3-4 to get more powerful weapons. To sum up Siberia, you retrive a disc, activate the zombies which you must shoot their heads off, get a flamethrower, and end up on the top of the dam in a tureet gun bullets and missles at a helicopter. Overall, the best first board I've played in a FPS and sadly the best board in TS2.

You can still unlock tons of stuff just like the orignal. There is a challenge mode where you play to get gold silver or bronze trophies accomplishing the obbjective. Ranging from breaking all the windows to running away from the people who are on fire or killing all the midgets. You are awarded with new modes, new characters, and probably new levels (though I think those are unlocked in the story mode). What I really appreciate about TS2 is when you make a user name, it keeps track of your stats. Shots fired, times hit, accuracy etc. It's nice to keep track of how good (or bad) you do.

Multiplayer is kind of a mixed bag. You can only have 12 bots. Though that is a lot, I swear in TS1 there was more or the same amount of bots. In a fats paced game like this where you respawn almost instantly, the more the merrier. Also with system link, NO BOTS! I was rather disappointed and honestly got no joy out of it. Split-screen was fun as hell though. Me and 5 of my friends did 4 player deathmatches against 12 bots and whoever got the worst place gave up the controller. Then we decided to do a 2 v. 2 team round robin. I was stuck with the worst player in the room but we did manage to go on a 6 game winning streak at the end. The reason why you can do 2 v. 2 without bots is you can quickly run and find the other player and games end much quicker than say a 2 v. 2 deathmatch at Sidewinder or even a small board like Battle Creek. Overall, system link coulda been better but none the less split-screen is still fun as hell.

Graphics: This is a multi-console game and compared ot the PS2 version I thought it looked much better on Xbox. However, nothing really stellar. Character models, enviroments, explosions, etc. are all good but not amazing. Not much you can ask for a multi-console game though.

Audio: Music is good for the fast paced frentic gameplay going on. Gun sounds effects are loud which is nice since some games have gun sound effects way too quiet. The onyl tihg that's kinda weak are explosions. Could be just me. And I just rearranged my room so my surround system isn't hooked up so I don't know if this has Dolby Surround support or not.

Suggestions: Bots in system link play, maybe co-op system link, lots of new stuff to unlock just to keep things fresh, and how bout making a Chinese2?

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell

Overall: God I love Tom Clancy! Attention to detail is one of his specialities in his books and boy did it rub off in Splinter Cell. I love all the jumps, gadgets, and weapons in this game. I've become so immersed even I tried the split-jump which ended up in a not so friendly twinge in my crotch area. Overall, out of Rainbow Six, Rogue Spear, Ghost Recon, Sum of All Fears, and Raven Shield, this is by far the best Tom Clancy game and one of the best game on Xbox you will see or play.

Gameplay: This game is all about stealth. First mission I played was where you start outside and first thing you do is go down the stairs and there is a prison. I did a couple wall jumps, executed a split-jump, and waited as the patroling guard went underneath as I went down on his body. There are a ton of gadgets for you to use. I love the camera you can use under the dorr to see your enemies. Lockpicking in this game is also very unique. Roll the joystick in a circle o unlock the lock and gain access to a room. You can shoot or interact with many things. You can pick up soda cans and glass bottles. Throw a bottle in front of your enemy. He goes over to see what the noise was as you walk behind him and smack him with the butt of your silenced pistol. It is a sight to behold and joy to do. I'm just having to much fun dicking around with everythign right now I have barely delved into the story.

Graphics: Un-freakin believable! Every "Only on Xbox" game shoudl be required to meet the graphical detail of this game. First time I saw light come through a window and reflect on my guy my jaw just dropped and I sat there for literally 5 minutes. I had seen movies of it before but it looked 50 times better and I had never played a video game that had lighting like that. Enviroments, computers, charcters, and all objects are just so lush with detail. IMO, best graphics on any Xbox game including Halo.

Audio: Voice acting, ambience, music picking up when in action, everythign about music and sound is great. Some weapon sound effects are weak even for silenced weapons but other than that minor complaint, perfection.

Suggestions: Make a sequel with all new boards, new storyline. You could leave everything else the same way and I'd buy it.

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 Deathrow

Overall: Long have I been waiting to play this. I played it once at my friend's, but traded it in for $10! (MORON!) So I went to EB and bought his used copy for $25 :D . This isn't as gory and violent as I thought it would be, but the game is defintely gritty and with drugs and excessive (but welcome) foul language, has plenty of attitude.

Gameplay: Controls are simple. Although I didn't take a likeing to them at first, they quickly grew on me. A and B punc and kick, A+B grab moves, Y Jump, X...does something. A passes, B shoots, R lock onto disc, and L does running attacks. The grab moves are just plain awesome. In the demo I only saw a few, but in the game each team has almost there own indivdual grab moveset. Very awesome. In single player, the slo-mo Matrix effect kicks in for every grab move you do. Doesn't really stop the flow of gameplay too much. As for multiplayer, it kicks in whenever a grab is done by a user to another user. It would suck having it kick in whenever a user did it to anybody but it's nice watching your friend get his !&%$@#* beat in slow mo.

What I was surprised was the career mode is multiplayer. Very few games have that but Deathrow allows up to 4 players to play on your team in career mode. In it, you can purchase several performance enhancing drugs that sometimes contain side effects. You also get challenges from teams trying to get in the league. They give you a lot of cash however, after the first challenge become very difficult. This robot team slapped the !&%$@#* outta my team and I didnt get the big cah prize plus I had to heal my team since they were KO'ed. Recruiting members is nice too. It allows you to get some depth on your roster.

The actual gameplay involves you trying to score a disc in the other opponents circle ring. At each arena, the ring comes in different sizes as well as the net. Speaking of which arenas vary greatly. Some are basic flat plain. However, there are two story arenas, the marine base which has a tunnel underneath it, and arenas with 2 ramps right in front of the goal for you to take a jumping shot off of. You need to have a different strategy at each arena making the game continually challenging. Some goals in arenas have a wall right behid them stopping the disc from flying far away so you can score behind the net getting 2 points no sweat. However, some dont' have a wall and you have to go a ways back.

Shooting and passing are simple. There are 2 vector lines: a green one which turns white showing you when your shot is almost a guranteed goal and a blue one showing who you will pass too. You can charge up your shot and shoot causing a deathrow or leave it like a mine for someone to pick up and get knocked on their ass. There are several powerups such as momentum, credits for your team to use, and health. Once your momentum is full, you can really !&%$@#* pound the other team in one to two grabs or a couple punches here and there.

Fighting is simple, fun, and challenging. Only downside is when the computer knocks you down, they show no mercy and knock your ass around till you are Injured. to get injured , you must deplete a character's health bubble. Once they are all gone he is Ko'ed at least for the round. To heal him you must use your teams credits. Personally I never heal my guys to full. I just pick up mega health in game to heal'em.

Deathrow offers an awesome gameplay system combined with strategy to provide an experience second to none.

Graphics: By far some of the best graphics on the Xbox. Not the greatest, but defintely good enough where you wouldn't be able to make it look that good on PS2 or GC. Charcter details to face and models are excellent. Animation with moves, shooting, jumping, diving etc. are fluent. The enviroments are great and the lighting is just right. Overall, excellently done.

Audio: In game soundtracks aren't bad, but custom soundtrack support is here and boy is it nice getting your hands dirty with Godsmack and Disturbed :D . In game voice acting is awesome as well. I love all the cussing! That's what I love to hear in a M rated game. Shouting strategies to your teammate (i.e. DEFEND THE NET!) and your teammates calling you adumbass for hitting the wrong guy is just great attention to detail. I love it!

Suggestions: Online play, more teams, and you really need to add weapons and possibly some dismemberment. Supberb game though.

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 World Series Baseball 2K3

Overall: I love baseball but haven't played one in a couple years. WSB on DC was terrible, Triple Play (first one) on PS2 was alright, and ASB on N64 was da bomb. Now, Sega has turned the WSB series on the right path. This game is not perfect, nor was it everything I was hoping for, but for the few hours I've had it I've gotten solid enjoyment out of one of my rentals.

Gameplay: First and foremost the Hollywood Video box was leading me on. It claimed it was 4 players. Well 4 controllers popped up, but only 2 players could join. Wow was I pissed. So I decided to bail exhibition and just do a Big League Challenge. Took the cover man Jason Giambi (Yankees rule!) and loved the pitcher/batter interface. It took me no less than 10 minutes before I was having no problems moving the cursor over the ball. I thought the ball speed was too slow, but as I was going through option you can turn ball speed to fast. It wasn't flying past me like a pitch would in Slugfest but it seemed a bit more realistic than medium did. In the end, I won against some guy from the NL it a pretty close one. I decided to try out exhibition. After looking at the Yankees and realizing they had 100 in all categories, I went against the Red Sox. After 2 innings, I was leading by 2 but I had to quit for my bro. So next game I played against the legends. Big mistake. I've never had my !&%$@#* handed to me so bad in a game of baseball in a matter of 3 innings. Wow the A.I. was good (or maybe it was just my bad hitting skills with non-power hitters). I love the replays especially the home run ones. Only problem is the animations are kinda off. For ex. I hit one with Giambi and in the replay my hands weren't even on the bat till I made contact with the ball. Field control is also a bit, stiff. Throwing animations are so nice though. The transition from picking up the ball to throwing it is so smooth it looks lifelike. No choppy movements at all. Didn't get to touch franchise yet.

Graphics: One of the best graphically impressive games around. Reason it doesn't get a 5.0? Mike Mussina looks fatter than Jason Giambi. There character models are off and so are many others. As for stadiums, fields, scenery, and fans, all picture perfect. Though the fans are 2d, you'll rarely see them as cardboard 2d models. From the front view they look like pretty well designed 3d models. I can't really describe them but trust me when I say they are very !&%$@#* good.

Audio: Commentary is the bomb. These comments concerning how far or close a ball is to going over the fence is just awesome. Sometimes they are bit behind on the play (usually only in Home Run Derby) but there are no pauses and names plug into their sentences very smoothly. Crowd noise is great. When you hit one deep and it just barely goes foul, the crowd just OOOHH's and it sounds like the real ball park. On field sound effects are hard to hear. I recommend turning them up to fall so you can hear ball meet bat but what I heard was good.

Suggestions: Online play and how about some 4 player support?

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 MechAssault

Overall: After highly anticipating Ghost Recon and Unreal Championship and was rather disappointed, I saw no reason how a game with mechs could be even remotely interesting. Wow was I wrong. The single player was quite enojyable. I love stepping on the little peoples. What I liked was how unique each mech was. Not all mechs have rocket boosters, not all mechs moves fast, and not all mechs have the same powerful weapons. I have gotten rather tired of Xbox Live, but when the downloadable content comes out, my interest will defintely be rekindled. As for multiplayer, 2 player is fun for a little while but i really enjoyed 8 player system link. It's just so much fun plus you know your not playing with some dumb !&%$@#* 11 year old using the deep voice mask.

Gameplay: The sticks movement is close but not exactly like Halo's. You get used to it very quickly. The game maintains a constant framerate unlike one other Xbox Live game *cough* UC *cough*. Not bashing UC, but sometimes it dips a bit too low. That will be fixed with the new UC patch coming out though. Back to Mechassault, destruction of buildings is just so much fun. I usually just keep shooting them all until their all gone just for mere pleasure. System Link is defintely fun. The multiplayer modes allow for some serious multiplayer replayability (not to mention the download is going to add CTF and a couple others, I can't wait!!!) The powerups for weapons can cause some serious damage and are very helpful online. I hate people that hog powerups though. That's alright they get quite a mouthful. Only downsides are one player ends and multiplayer does get a bit boring, but always remember downloadable content will end those two by the end of Feb. or start of Mar. IMO, this is defintely the best Xbox Live title I've played.

Graphics: This game defintely ranks in the top 3 Xbox game with best graphics. The mechs are very detailed and the enviroments, buildings, damage all look terrific. Defintely lots of eye candy.

Audio: Sound effects are great. Explosions are loud and it really sounds like your walking around in a 2 ton mech crushing people, blowing up people, and taking names and kickign mech ass!

Suggestions: Downloadable content should come out sooner. I kinda wanted some customization options in the weapons department. More mechs obviouslynad how about 16 player or more online or system link.

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 Turok: Evolution

Overall: Since my bro took my Xbox, I've been going to all of my friends houses and playing all their new games. The controls in Turok are similar to Halo. There are plenty of weapons, a very challenging one player, and a pretty entertaining multiplayer experience. This is defintely worth at least a rental.

Gameplay: When turning and moving it's a bit stiff even when sensitivity is jacked up. The one player experience is very challenging (at least the chapter I played). The dinosaurs also do some interesting stuff. My friend was standing in some bushes where apparently a dinosaur didn't see him and after sitting there for a little while the dinosaur took a crap. LOL! First time I've seen someone take a crap in a video game. Thr multiplayer although fun, has some way, way , way too powerful weapons. For example, there is a grenade and when detonated covers a huge area with this silver substance that's very shiny. Walk into that and you die. It's an instant kill and there are plenty of'em around the boards. So I'd make sure you turn those off. I also like decapitation kills and shooting people's bodies till they explode. True its not very realistic when you shoot and arrow and a person explodes, but it still looks cool non-the-less. This is a pretty good game and could serve as a substitute for Halo maybe for a week or 2 or more in the multiplayer department.

Graphics: This was gonna get a lower rating, but when I saw Turok on the PS2, the Xbox version looks so much better. The characters are fairly detailed as are the weapons, but trees and bushes are pretty weak in detail. The graphics defintely aren't an eye sore but they aren't exactly eye candy.

Audio: I love all the loud noises the guns make in this game and all the noises dinosaurs make. Didn't really pay attention to the music so I dunno if that's good or not. You can hear other random wildlife sounds when you are waiting around. Pretty good job. Oh btw, I forgot to mention I love chasing the deer in this game and killing them. It's so much fun! I haven't done anything like that since Deer Hunter so you might wanna give it a try.

Suggestions: A pretty good job. Maybe add some more multiplayer characters and how bout System Link or XBL support?

Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 Star Wars: Obi-Wan

Overall: This game is weak. My friend has a thing for Star Wars and wondered if there were any Star Wars xbox games out. I told him Obi-Wan but all the reviews I read were very terrible. I think this is the first time he didn't listen to me and he bought it. Now I was playing it at the EB kiosk, and on there small plasma screen TV, the lighting made graphics at times look cel-shaded. When I went to his house, I discovered it's a weak hack-n-slash that provides little to no challenge.

Gameplay: How easy this game is baffles me. Laser shots move so slow it takes no effort to deflect the shot. I didn't play the vs. mode (or battle mode forgot what it's called) but as for the single player I wanted to take the game and stomp on it so we could go back to playing some more Halo. Thye enemies were do dumb and way to easy to kill. There are also not enough enemies around so very rarely did I get hit by anyone at all. It was just too easy. Enemies also got stuck on objects and times. There are some cool jedi moves, but when there's very few enemies to use them on, this game gets boring very fast.

Graphics: The weird thing is the graphics looked better on my friends POS 17" then it did on EB's plasma TV. It didn't look cel-shaded on his. True there was improvement, but the graphics were still pretty weak. Everything just lacked detail. There wasn't detail in anything. Defintely not Xbox quality. Early PS2 games had more detail than this POS.

Audio: Comes with all the Star Wars sounds you may or may not love. The laser shots sound just like they do in the movies. Laser shot deflections from the lightsaber make the same noise as in the movies. Pretty much everything sounds like it does in movies.

Suggestions: Don't make a sequel of this. Instead, how bout adding more guys to the development of Sam and Max 2?

Overall Score: 5.0 / 10 Dead to Rights

Overall: Wow this game was awesome! I was so close to beating this game. I was on the last board too about to face the final boss (can't say who it is don't wanna spoil the story). The story of the game seemed to be a mere bad cop movie storyline, but over the course of playing, the story takes some obvious and not so obvious twists. The control setup is great. R to Aim, A to fire, B to disarm, and Y to dive and do bullet-time sequences. Never did I think anything was better than bullet-time. Well now there is. Some of the disarms in this game are just so freaking cool to watch! True it takes a while to unlock some really good ones, but once you do, you are in for a very tasty treat. One thing about this game that Max Payne didn't have was the need to strategize. There will be plenty of occasions your getting spanked by the A.I. and you just gotta start experimenting and trying to find a way to get past the enemies. The guns in this are awesome. The M4 carbine is probably my favorite as it's an automatic, takes off plenty of damage, and in bullet-time sounds like each shot is a shotgun shot :D. IMO, this is worth a purchase. There were a couple days when I rented this I didn't want to play it (if I did I woulda prob beaten the game). However, after a while you are just dying to go back in play. It was kind of odd as 1 hour I didn't wanna play, the next I was dying to play it again. It has a weird appeal, but it's still one hell of a game. And I think getting all the disarms is worth the purchase.

Gameplay: This is a semi-mixed bag. The gun fighting is awesome. Namco takes a step out of Koei's book and has the hug the wall feature from Winback in this game. Unlike Max Payne, you stay in the air with bullet-time much longer. Allowing you to kill 3-5 enemies. One thing other games like this should do is use the enemy shield feature. With a weapon, walk up to your enemy and press B to use him as a shield. It bails you out big time whenever you have very low health and can't take another bullet. The A.I. script seems to be staged. The same guys always charge at me, while the same guys always stand still etc. In a sense, it doesn't make the challenge impossible (like when you gotta fight 15 guys outside are 20 massueces in the chinese massage place) but it also feels so repetitive which is why I usually take those hour breaks. Besides these minor complaints of mine, this game is still great to play and one of the best Xbox titles out.

Graphics: Very plain and basic. Characters and levels lack the detail you'd expect out of Xbox only titles. The cutscenes that don't use in-game graphics have very bad video quality (almost as bad as the video quality on RE2 for Nintendo 64) There really isn't a key graphical feature that is so great it stands out. Even though the graphics are basic, they aren't fuzzy and not really blocky. So a decent job but it could've been much better.

Audio: Sound effects are a major plus. Once you play the game enough, you can tell what weapon each enemy is holding (i.e. you look around a corner and a guy shoots and you see like 12 bullet holes, chances are he's got a shotgun) The surround sound is decent. What I don't get is my subwoofer is rather, quiet, and never makes noise. The gun noises are loud and very good. The rain also sounds like real rain is pouring down. The soundtrack in the game is decent, and I think coulda been better, but with the whole cop wrongfully accused story, it suited it fine.

Suggestions: Make the graphics a lot better. How bout letting shadow be more than a weapons and doing the occasional mini-game? Also, fix the hand-to-hand fighting. It is way to basic seeing as Streets of Rage has a better hand to hand fighting system. All in all very good job and hope you make a sequel.

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 Project Gotham Racing

Overall: My first experience with PGR came earlier this year around March. Let me tell you I have never, EVER had a worse time playing a game than I did playing PGR. However, I realized that for some reason, people enjoyed this game including people who weren't huge car and racing game fans (such as myself). However, I found what made the game click with me. First, I had to spend time with it. I played this game at LEAST an hour before I could do power slides, ride on 2 wheels, and basically earn more than 150 kudos while still finishing in first place. Second, my goal was never that far out of my reach. One thing I hate about games that have challenges (like pass 8 cars in the given time) is you never know how close to your goal you are. In PGR, 9/10 I was literally a second away from getting first or passing 8 cars. That's the kind of challenge I like. A challenge you know you got a shot at beating at. I also love the fact you unlock cars. I was bouncing off walls when I unlocked the first car, The Volkswagon Beetle (which of course isn't that great) but it still felt very rewarding. All in all, there are tons of unlockables, plenty of races and circuits, a great kudos mode, and a pretty decent multiplayer experience.

Gameplay: This game handles like no other. Although it handles like no other game I've played (which I hated for the first 30 minutes), you kinda like the fact your car easily powerslides and can't turn on a dime (at least the cars I got). The only problem with the handling is when it comes to multiplayer. None of my friends are car game fanatics, either. So when they come over and I win 2-3 races, they immediately didn't want to play it. The Kudos challenge is very enjoyable. Races usually very close, a mono-y-mono race is usually decides by the last turn, and time limit races come down to the last milli-second (...sometimes). It really adds to the excitement of the race. It also make it so if you fail, you keep trying and trying. True the pissed off factor is quite high sometimes, it's very enjoyable. The Kudos is very interesting as you are rewarded for driving stylish and flawless. There are also so many places and circuits to race at. I personally like racing in the Times Square/Wall Street boards. All in all, very good and plenty of lasting appeal (at least in the single player category).

Graphics: These cars are amazingly detailed. There are no blocky models. There is lots of shine and real time reflection on your cars. The enviroments are also detailed as well. I haven't seen a single building that has blocky or fuzzy textures. There is also a tiny bit of car damage at times which looks awesome. Very polished, and very attractive to the eye.

Audio: I didn't like most of the tunes that were on the game. But never fear, soundtrack support saves the day. Engine and tire squealing noises are also very good. I can't think of anything else to comment on.

Suggestions: Great job. Can't wait for PGR2.

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 Legends of Wrestling

Overall: I played LOW for PS2 and noticed the game was plagued by much clipping, glitches, and control movement issues. So once I heard the Xbox version fixed many little control problems I decided to try it out. The first thing that caught me by suprise was 6 man and 8 man tag team matches. I was astonished to see those in the Xbox version. I love the 6 man tag match but in the 8 man match the camera is zoomed out way too far for you to enjoy. Next, I noticed the movement problem was fixed, sort of. The guys move smoothly, yet they move so fast that u can literally run from one corner to the next in about half a second. Overall, LOW provides an outstanding multiplayer experiences for a month or so, but lack severly in it's single player and CAL departments.

Gameplay: I see what Acclaim tried to do with this ISP tie up spiel. And I love the idea,however this is nowhere near enough moves to keep me interested. For ex. No Mercy had 2 buttons (A and B) and it was possible to do 10 front and back grapples. In this you get about 3-4. I really can't stand seeing the same move so many times over and over. However, weapons save the day. Weapons basically add a ton of appeal (to me at least). Weapons make loud noises, dent, can be used for weapon oriented moves, and do something other wrestling games cannot do, make someone bleed. And trust me, you can mess up a wrestler's face pretty bad. There are so many cuts and it looks much more better than it did in the old ECW and WWF days. The blood also drips onto the mat. Now although the puddles of blood are the same circular shape (but not the same size), it still looks very cool. Another thing this game has SD! and WMX8 do not have is guys in the veggie stage. When you beat the crap out of your opponent, his !&%$@#* isn't gonna wake up for a while which gives you time to hit him with a weapons 3-4 times or do 2-3 moves before the person wakes up. There are no gimmick matches at all. I'm disappointed in this because many people wrestlers in that game have made the cage match classic *cough* Jimmy Snuka *cough* and made the once in but taken out before release, Scaffold Match, known by almost all wrestling fans *cough* Sabu *cough*. Speaking of which, he is in and is my favorite wrestler. However, I believe his moves do him no justice as his finisher now a days is the guillotine leg drop with the chair instead of the camel clutch. Speaking of chairs, weapons oriented moves are in this game. Merely press Y with the weapons your wrestler does his weapon oriented move with, and wham! you can do Russian leg sweeps with a signapore cane *cough* Sandman *cough* and the Van-daminator with mr. PPV R-V-D. I could seriously do these moves for hours as I love how almost everytime I do it guys bleed more and more. The career mode is interesting but not in depth. It doesn't keep me interested cause there is no story line and there are waaay too many matches. You gotta go after like 10 belts in one career. Although what's cool is the fact you can unlock moves for your wrestler. The CAL has a major problem. Having only one face to work with makes most if not all your creations look a like. None the less, if you get good with the create-a-stencil, you can make anything from eye rings to tattoos to face paint. There are lots of moves to choose from which is a major plus. AND, this game allows you to put in custom tracks for your wrestler. I was going crazy when Sandman actually came out to Enter Sandman (BTW, Sandman isn't in the game. He was just my CAL). This game also has in gamesoundtrack support (but for some reason XBA says it doesn't at the top of this page...odd) There is a tag-team co-op tournament mode thing where you can unlock about 4 wrestlers and is very fun until you unlock everything. All in all, LOW adopts a ton of great ideas, but didn't include the detail and polish to make these features great. I gotta feelin THQ is gonna steal half of them and polish them and make it seem like they invented it. Hope Acclaim beats them to the punch.

Graphics: LOW uses extremely huge characters. Hulkamania looks pretty much like he did in the old days, he looked like roid-o-mania. However, it appears almost, if not all, wrestlers have this big muscularness to them. I never remember Bret Hart or RVD being extremely jacked. As for the faces, everyone looks like themselves except a couple who have a slightly cartoonish look but none the less are close. The audience is 3d but it's not that hard when you have such a small arena. The arenas are not all that impressive. Animations are sometimes smooth and sometimes stiff but they always seem very simplistic i.e. when RVD does the van-daminator it looks like he skips from the frame of him about to jump to the frame of his foot on the chair. Like I said earlier cuts on the face look awesome and so do the puddles of blood. Again, it's decent, but with more detail and polish, it could have been tons better.

Audio: This is a mixed bag. The advice from managers in the career mode are very annoying and the animations with them talking are horrible (I thought only Italians used their hands when they talked :D . Apparently, Capt. Lou Albano and Jimmy Hart do too) In game sound effects are not that great. Impact of moves on the mat and outside are weak but chair shots and top rope moves sound tons LOUDER and better. The custom BGM's are pretty close for most people (i.e. LOD and Sabu). Again, more detail and polish was needed but it was needed more than ever in this department.

Suggestions: Don't make the guys move like a million MPH's when they run. Add more frames to the animations they look kinda sloppy at times. Fix all clipping problems. Add gimmick matches, and give me more faces to work with in CAL. Also give me a better career mode to play with a friend in tag-team or have 3-4 players on a team competing for 6 mand and 8 man tag belts. I think LOW 2 will be much more polished so keep working hard on it.

Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 NFL 2K3

Overall: Disclaimer's notice: I haven't done one of these in a while so don't be surprised if it isn't that good.

IMO, NFL2k1 won the battle for best football game a couple years back. Last year NFL2k2 had plenty of room for improvement since EA had taken a mighty big step themselves. This year, Sega, by far, is THEE king in the football series this year. The problem of breaking 50 tackles in a row is fixed, sound is top notch in sound effects and in commentary, and animation has been pumped up onto a level I didn't think was possible.

Gameplay: I'm used to played football games on the PS2. I had quite a bit of adjusting to do even though, in essence, the default control is the same as the PS2 version. One things I noticed off the bat is the animation. I remember last year when you made a tackle on a guy who didn't have a ball he would always fall down like his legs had been tackled. It was just that 1 animation and I hated seeing it. Once I sacked the QB, I noticed the sound was so loud and realistic I swear I killed the guy. Oh wait I'm going into sound. I'll save that for later. Anywayz it looked like I hit him so hard he coulda been sent into the stands. And no this doesn't mean we flew 50 yards to the sideline it just means the hit looked HARD. I also noticed the detail to AI. What I enjoy about it is they are very good on pass defense. And it isn't like some games where the ball stays long enough in the air that the friggin D-line has enough time to go down field and block the ball *cough*Fever 02'*cough* but the corners and safety were aware where the ball was and got on it as quick as they could. The game also feels a lot slower than last year. I remember last year the pace was so fast a play could end in an instant. This year it turns towards the sim department a bit and it is a very good change. Your QB will have time in the pocket to choose plays and recievers can't go for 30 yard rushes every play. The juke move tends to be quite handy and so is the spin move (which for some reason is merely stutter steps which I have no idea why). Plays that tend to work well with me are curls especially with my TE (the #1 draft pick the NY Giants got. Forgot what his name was but he is mighty impressive even though the game stats say he is merely average). A couple things bother me about this game though. First off, whenever you charge up and tackle, you can still dive a great distance. I don't think a corner could dive 7 yards to tackle me at my knees much less a d-line men. It is still too leniant. Second, is the running game. The running game is an up and down type thing. What bother me about is, it's pretty much worthless. Your back(s) never look like they are that much faster than the D-line and I usually end up with losses. There is however, the occasional drives where your line makes a beautiful block and you get thru and just go for like 40 yards. What I don't get is how do I get losses on HB tosses. Makes no sense to me. In real life a HB could easily get to the line of scrimmage and not a 3-4 yard loss. Other than these mere pet peeves, the game still needs improvment in some areas but overall is much more polished than last year and the EA series. I almost forgot franchise. What an amazing and in-depth mode. I can't believe all the options you have. I like how the AI makes counter offers. Though some are outrageous (i.e. Jamal Anderson for Ahman Green, Counter offer Jamal Anderson and Brian Urlacher). You can sign free agents, set your depth charts, etc. I've yet to get to the off season options so I dunno about those but all in this mode is awesome.

Graphics: Personally I didn't think this category was gonna be that high. But when I saw all guys didn't have long legs, and some looked like they were pretty heavy, I was impressed with the detail to the faces and bodies. True, the faces don't look like EA's 3D ones, however, unlike EA's football games, they don't use just three face skins. They all look like the players they are suppose to. The audience, like all Visual Concept sportsgames, look good from afar, but up close look like very fuzzy sprites. And I don't think the crowd was 3D either but they could've been dunno for sure. As for the addition of Sportscenter, I almost turned this game off. It looked like the same stuff Primetime used (which was a very shoddy game), and I was having bad memories. Thank goodness that's all they were, bad memories. With the addition with the ESPN license, the meny templates and in game camera stuff, pregame stuff, stat sheets, etc. gives this game such a polished and professional look. The rain looks quite amazing. I mean teh field begins to get soggy. However, the players don't exactly slide and slip. Plus, the commentators blame the dropped passes on the rain every play. True it adds realism since they know it's raining, but blaming it on the rain every play? C'mon! The snow is awesome! It looks so real! However, there a few realism complaints. First off, footprints aren't left. Second, since there aren't any TV timeouts, how the hell do the keep the snow from thickening? Other than that, snow does what it's suppose to. Look cool, add a new dimension to the game, and make it hard to find recievers downfield. Overall, very polished and clean as whistle (for the most part).

Audio: Wow! I've never come across a game that has such amazing sound. First off, the crowd. The crowd cheers boos etc. However, what most other games don't have, is when you are going for the win in the 4th or going for one in the redzone, or making a long fieldgoal and your the home team, the crowd gets as pumped up as a team making a comeback in the Rose Bowl. They cheer their team on so loud it's amazing. Second, on field noises. Guys trash talk tons before and after plays. I love hearing it. However, the sound quality of it isn't that great. You can notice the quality when the crowd is very quiet. As for the hits, never have tackles made such loud noises. The first time I hit a QB between the sweet animation and the sound it sounded like I knocked him into a little world somewhere in his mind (i.e. a world that Steve Young and Troy Aikman are familar with). The commentary is also spectacular. I love those split screen replays and how closely they examine the plays. I mean they show why the QB threw a bad pass and they even say the very instant the ball is redeflected etc. It's amazing how they programmed something as smart as that into the game. Commentary is not at all repetitive. F*ck NCAA 2003 saying they added 5000 new lines. BS I hear the same !&%$@#* lines all game by Corso and his other dumbass butt buddy (not the lead commentator, he's good, that other one who does't College Gameday with him). This commentary is not repetitive and is very in-depth.

Suggestions: Amazing game. Just fix up a couple realism areas and this game will be the closest thing to football heaven.

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 Silent Hill 2: Restless Dreams

Overall: I've rented all the new games at Hollywood and was desperate to find something new. But then I noticed Silent Hill 2. I completely forgot it was on the Xbox. I loved the Resident Evil 1 and 2 but it slowly lost it's spookiness in games like Code Veronica and Resident Evil 3. It's nice to play a game that doesn't focus on the T, U, X, viruses or w/e the hell they were. The main character (forgot his name) recieved a letter from his wife who passed away 3 years ago. He doesn't really believe she is alive but decides to explore anyways. The undead creatures in the game really aren't that scary. Once I ran into Pyramid Head, things started getting really creepy. Over all, if your tired of the Res Evil series, I strongly recommend trying this as the new story line and unfamilar enemies brings back the crepyness.

Gameplay: The frustration factor is UNBELIEVABLE. I spent hours figuring out what keys unlock what doors and the puzzles (especially the one with the coins) !&%$@#* the hell out of you. I really recommend going to Gamefaqs and looking at the strategy guide for it will save you from sending your controller half way into orbit. The 3D controls are similar to Res Evil while 2D controls are similar to a 3D action game. You will meet a lot of interesting people and some who know information about Mary, however, they usually keep it to themselves. I have only come across two weapons that I can use so I don't know if there is much variety.

Graphics: The graphics are pretty good. Although most of it is just fog, when your inside buildings it's quite a sight. The blurry effect is quite annoying but luckily you can turn off the screen effect. The graphics although not spectacular are still pretty good and are not an eye sore.

Audio: Love the sound in this game. The eerie noises, the footsteps, everything becomes spooky once you get in Woodside apartment. Very nice job done here.

Suggestions:

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 Outlaw Golf

Overall: After reading some other reviews I was a bit worried at first upon renting this. As soon as I picked up the controllers, the game reminded me of the Tiger Woods game on PS2. I immediately noticed I had a beating token which I used immediately and beat the living s*it out of my caddie. I proceeded to do a perfect drive which had a nice flame trail behind it. Welcome to Outlaw Golf, where there is so much violence, crude language, and adult humor you'll wonder how the hell Hypnotix got away with a Teen rating. The characters have great personalities. They say and do some of the funniest things ever seen on a video game. On my list, this is the 2nd funniest game next to Conker's Bad Fur Day and is the #1 golf game I've ever played. The gameplay mechanics are absolutely outstanding. It feels very similar to the Tiger Woods game on PS2. Pull the right control stick back and hold it till you reach your desired power and push foward. What's so great about this is it's like real golf. Say you push foward slightly to the left, your shot will have a slight hook and if you got to the right you'll get a slight slice just like in real golf. The only time it is very hard to hit the ball is when your confidence is in the negative area. Never fear, you can boost it up to full with a quick caddie beating which is very entertaining. I don't care what some other w*nkers have said about this game, it's got great gameplay mechanics and a lot of great lines.

Gameplay: Absolutely love it. Pull back and foward on the right stick is perfect for golf games. My only tiny complaint is the putting gauge at times seems off. I press "X" to see the yellow trail and it says my ball will go directly in the hole. I shoot at very !&%$@#* near the exact power but I still seem to go over a bit or under a bit. It seems the yellow trail doesn't calculate the hills and slopes on the green. The characters add a whole dimension to the gameplay. I love to see El Suave make a birdie putt and respond to the crowds applause by saying "Thank you thank you...however, I don't appreciate you that much." The one player mode is great. You can unlock more clubs, balls, and upgrade characters stats. It is probably the most fun I've had with a tour mode in any golf game. I do prefer the Hot Shots Golf tour mode where u go 1 on 1 with someone to unlock them but this is just fine.

Graphics: I don't care what the other w*nker said who gave this department a 1.0 , graphics are outstanding. The thick rough has lots of individual grass blades which are all very detailed. The enviroments are amazing especially the moving traffic, trees, and the water. Golfers and caddies have tons of detail to them and the crowd is pretty good as well.

Audio: If any of you watch The Daily Show, there are two guys named Steve. Anywayz, the one without the glasses is the commentator. Steve is rips into your performance with no mercy and when you make good shots is quite hilarious. For ex. on a bad shot he'll say "You just gotta LOVE that hook!..unless of course your the one who hit it." or on a good shot he'll say "Just like my girlfriend, THAT GREEN IS FAST!" I can see how many people would find his sayings stupid, but he is !&%$@#* hilarious. I actually enjoyed the in game music quite a bit. The characters have a ton of audio sayings and reveal a lot about their personalities.

Suggestions: This is THEE perfect golf game and I recommend it to everyone even if they don't like golf. Just get a beating token and I gurantee it'll get you to laugh. The only thing that needs to be added is maybe some more sayings for the commentator and more than 3 courses. Other than that, this is the most in-depth and creative golf game I've ever played. Outstanding job.

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 MotoGP

Overall: This remind me kind of like the old days of Road Rash 64, except you have to race and can't beat the s*it out of your opponents. None the less, the crashes in this game are decent. This takes the throne BARELY from Rallisport as best Xbox racing game (in my book that is. Most people like PGR more for some reason.) After a couple races, you'll pick up the "slow in, fast out" concept when taking turns. These courses are pretty long making it easy to catch up on the 8th lap of a 10 lap race. I found the game to be rather to forgiving. For ex. , I ran off the course pretty bad and I noticed everyone slowed down I the turned I botched until I got back on the track. I did the same turn later excpet I didn't mess up and I was still just as far behind as I was when I f*cked up the turn. None the less, Championship will provide you with a good challenge. There are a ton of tracks to play on, lots of stuff to unlock, a good Grand Prix mode, and custom soundtrack (for some reason, although I don't like them anymore, every song on Limp Bizkit's Significant other seems to be perfect for this game. Might just be me)

Gameplay: Controls are very responsive. Braking, leaning, and being able to spin out all help with your turning and turning around quick if you get knocked backwards by another rider or for some other unknown reason. Crashes are very satisfying especially when you knock someone's back tire out and you see them fly. Although these are not the best crashes I've seen, they are still nice to see. Popping wheelies to accelerate is very simple to do. Sometimes if your high enough a guy stays underneath your front wheel and when you come down you both wipe out (one of my favorites :D) Multiplayer is pretty fun (yet to do system link) and be competitive against someone who knows what they are doing. My only problem is with the A.I. kind of easy and too forgiving which takes away from the challenge a bit but I can live with it.

Graphics: Some of the best graphics I've seen. Bikes, rider, and enviroments all beautifully detailed. My only problem is stuff like the tires and road seem to be oddly colored. Like I said before, could be just me. The rain on the shield thing on the front of the bike is sooooooo realistic it isn't funny. Pretty job in this department.

Audio: Although the early bikes engine sound dinky and have no power, you got to get the more powerful noise to hear the real engine noises. Those are awesome! Custom soundtracks are a major plus. Tires burning also sound fine.

Suggestions: Maybe jack up the A.I. difficulty a little an how bought changing the color a little bit on bikes and stuff. Very good job all around.

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 Hunter: The Reckoning

Overall: This game without a doubt is sharing the throne of best game for Xbox with Halo. The variety of attacks, the amount of melee and gun weapons, the interactvity of the enviroments, and chopping off several limbs off zombies makes this one hell of a title. Your character(s) do not move like they are high on crack. They move at a normal, realistic pace. The animations are picture perfect. Every attack and reaction to the attack are all smooth and right on. The only 2 tiny problems are te occasional glitches like not being able to jump on something and getting stuck for about 5 seconds but no zombies are usually around so it isn't that big of a problem and the camera preventing me from seeing my character. Other than that, this game raises the bar for all future hack n' slash games.

Gameplay: This game mixes 3 game elements: the violence and zombies of Res Evil, dark and twistedness of TM: Black, and hack n' slash gameplay of Gauntlet except a lot better. At the beginning, you start off with a melee weapon , a infinite ammo gun (which one you get depends on the character) and a magic spell. The more you move along, you'll earn more spells and pick up a machine guns, shotgun, chainsaw, and even an assault rifle which looks like a friggin' anti-aircraft gun. You can destroy most windows, cars, or anything that can explode (gas canisters etc.) Explosions are very pleasing to see and even more pleasing when they take out a large group of zombies. One thing I like a lot over Gauntlet Legacy is guys just dont fall down and die. You can take off a arm, leg, or head and slice someone in half. Very entertaining watching a zombie missing it's upper body trying to kick you. I've only played this game with one other person and myself so far, but killing zombies is just so much FUN! :D

Graphics: The cutscene graphics are worse than the in game graphics. As for the in game graphics, the characters are beautifully designed and the surrounding enviroments look like a riot just happened and very creepy. Excluding the cutscenes, Interplay used a heck of a lot of the Xbox's power and are quite a sight to see.

Audio: It seems the music kicks in whenever you are being jumped by more than 30 zombies and mellows down the more you kill. But in the end when their all dead, a stone gargoyle hops from the sky and it kicks back up. Though very rare, the music is right on. I prefer without the music and just listening to the sound effects and the eerie noises really adds a lot to the game. When you pull out a sword it makes a noise thats very realistic and pull out a shotgun and hearing it click lets me know I'm about to reak some serious hell! Not repetitive at all. All around d*mn near perfect.

Suggestions: I have no idea what you can change to make this better. My only request is more awesome characters like Avenger and the guy with the cross-bow (don't remember his name) just so the 4th person doesn't get stuck with the crappy character. This should be an Xbox best-seller hopefully. Just hope the M rating doesn't take away from sales.

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 New Legends

Overall: I compared this game to Dynasty Warriors 3 (PS2 game) hoping since this is on Xbox it would be better. Well you better believe this game isn't even close enough to be better than Dynasty Warriors 2. The overall feel of the game feels rushed. Graphics are alright but at certain times look cel shaded. Sound effects are ok and the music blows. What made me play the game for this amount of time was the gameplay. Once you get your hands on a 2 handed weapon, you can do a ton of combinations. Objectives are simple and even at bosses it's hard to die. What really ruined the game is you are suppose to collect 5 blades. However, just as I found this out, I got 2 of the blades instantly and a third one a little later. It seems like I'm almost done yet I haven't played this game that long. This defintely isn't a buy but it could be worth a rental or two.

Gameplay: For the most part it's good but way too simplistic. Melee weapons take up two hands while standard weapons allow to hold one in each hand. My problem with two one handed weapons is you do the same combo no matter what everytime. Melee Weapons (excluding the Tiger Claw) have 10+ combos which makes this mindless game worth playing. The storyline seems good at first. Once you get out of the prison though it gets extremely boring. There are not many character models so it feels like your just killing clones. The guns in this are worthless. I think a shot from a hand cannon to the face would kill someone but rather it takes 2-3 on most occasions. Another thing I dislike a lot is parrying. This game requires no time to counter an attack. Press the Y button and the guy gets stunned no matter how off you are. This game is way too simple. If you got PS2, Dynasty Warriors 3 is much better, has 2 player, has people to unlock, and is fun as hell. Plus there are like 1,000+ people on screen. In this you usually face about 5 at a time. If you are bored of the DW series, this is worth a rental.

Graphics: There's not much you can say here. DW3 has more people on screen, more buildings, bigger boards etc. and they are nicely detailed. New Legends on the other hand has some poorly done enemies and mediocre mains characters. Very blocky and look cel shaded at times. No where near Xbox quality.

Audio: Very, very repetitive sounds and music. I think this game total has 3 songs and individual songs for each boss (which there aren't many). They music is very pathetic. The sounds of swords clashing and guns firing are close to mute and very poorly done. Yet again, the Xbox can do better than this.

Suggestions: You really got to fix this game up a ton. It has a ton of promise, but it also needs a huge graphical boost, better music and sound, maybe a co-op mode, and pretty much better everything.

Overall Score: 6.0 / 10 Nascar Heat 2002

Overall: So far, I am very happy with this purchase. Not only did I get it for a steal from Ebay at a mere $15 (plus s&h) but I'm also having a blast. I've yet to play system link, but multiplayer is one fun ride. I still enjoy the Beat the Heat challenges and Championship mode (which is pretty f'n sweet) and best of all, this game adds a ton of realism. I played one of those Nascar sims down at my mall where your in the car and it bounces you around etc. and compared to Nascar Heat, the only better thing is the car shaking violently. Nascar Heat has better graphics, more options, and best of all amazing crashes.

Gameplay: This game has all the realism of actual Nascar. The difficult steering, the realistic crashes, and the full 43 car field make this Nascar experience awesome. I never watch Nascar nor did I like Nascar Thunder, but everyone being so close and races being decided by a nose just made me addicted to this game. Another thing I like about this game is it's so easy to turn it into a Destruction Derby. Either clip the back bumper from the left or right side or turn around and ram people head on. The result, an amazing crash with cars spining, flipping, cars releasing smoke, and cars being on fire. There is so much smoke you can barely see through it. There is also a replay feature after races allowing you to view the race from tons of camera angles and focusing on any car that took part in the race. Once you beat all the Beat the Heat challenges, you are suppose to get Richard Petty which I've yet to determine is real or not. The paint-ball mode is also fun. Instantly turn the race into one of the classic Twisted Metal game. Shoot out this big paint-ball/boulder and if hits someone they will go flying. You will probably find it in the cheats section on this site if you want to use it. I haven't gotten into the championship mode that much, but it uses an actual Nascar ranking system which sounds sweet. Also, before racing, you can enter the garage and change settings according to your prefrences. Since I'm not a car junky like some people, I tend to stay away from changing anything. Beat the Heat challenges are 1 challenge after the next asking you to perform certain tasks. Before you start the challenge, Nascar stars like Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Rusty Wallace, and some Nascar announcer (forgot name) give you an overview of what your about to do and give you tips to succeed. For someone like me who rarely like Nascar games, these tips help a lot. Although I bought this game for mostly system link purposes, this is for some reason turning out to be an awesome 1 player and split screen title.

Graphics: I played Nascar Thunder on PS2 but not the Xbox version. Compared to Nascar Thunder PS2, this game blows it out of the water. There are a TON of skid marks and they seem to never disappear. If a crash ensues, you can easily see 1/4 of the track covered in skid-marks with different lengths and darknesses. Cars and damage are very detailed. The pit crew although don't have a very visible face, they have some pretty sweet character models. My only complaint is the background scenery outside the track (like say the woods behind the track) are loading as you are going around the track. Now that I notice it, it's constantly irking me and usually distracts me. I'd give the visual appeal a 4.9 if I could but since I'm rounding to the closest number I gave it a 5.

Audio: This department also gets a 4.9 My only little beef is the crowd. They only chant loud when the checkered flag is being waved. They don't sound like they are in to it that much even when a 42 car pile up ensues. Now that I got that out of the way, the sound effects are dead on. Lean against a car, you see a few sparks and a screeching noise. If someone flips and lands it sounds like a monster truck just crushed 5 cars. I like your crew team radioing you during the race because it adds some more realism. Tires screech and burn when you spin them out. In closing, this is one of the coolest racing games I've played. This is coming from a non-Nascar fan. It provides a good sim with a ton of options and good multiplayer while allowing you to go wild with your destructive side. This game is a must buy!

Suggestions: I like how you had Nascar stars giving tips before challenges. Crashes are amazing. Maybe make the audience a bit more into. Other than that, I love this game.

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 NFL 2K2

Overall: This and Madden are my 2 favorite football games. This game is a bit more arcadish as you can tackle guys 7 yards away and do a 360 in less than a second on one foot, but none the less, this game is still fun to play. Although I haven't seen any improvement except a little bit graphical wise from the PS2 version, don't let the fact it's a port scare you, because the game is still fun to play and franchise will keep you hooked for weeks.

Gameplay: This game has a real simple control system. It's the same as the DC version and PS2 version which is a very good thing. With the turbo arrow, you can adjust how hard your stiff arm, spin move, or juke will be. If executed properly, you'll most likely see a slow motion replay complete with the announcers circling where the ball is and how your feet move etc. which adds some realism to this arcadish game. I only have the complaint that guys can stop on a dime and do a 360 on one foot standing still. My brother uses this trick all the time I can never tackle him no matter how many guys are around him. He's like temporarily invisible. The franchise mode doesn't allow you to play with the Texans like in Madden, but it doesn't matter to me as I always try to make a good N.Y. Giants team. Make cuts, trade, draft college players, etc. Unlike previous years, players have ratings that are actually good. You used to have to improve stats over time but now some players in the draft are high calibur. Very good job all around.

Graphics: Nothing improved over PS2 which takes some points away. None the less, they aren't that bad in some areas. Player faces, jerseys, and helmets, mouth animations, tackles, stadium architechture, turf, and grass all look very good. As for everything else, with the Xbox it could have easily been fixed. The referee really doesn't have a face you can see. The crowd looks good from a far but up close is so blurry it just looks like a bunch of colors. This has been true with all Visual Concept games in the past, however.

Audio: The commentary is the best thing in the sound department. Announcers constantly interact with each other and discuss replays. I rarely hear the same phrase excluding the down and how far to go phrases twice. Sound effects are a bit iffy. The crowd is defintely into the game and can get pretty loud. The tackle noises take away from the tackle. They look like they hurt more than they sound. The collision of the o-line and d-line sounds like bowling pins colliding. Not to realistic at all. Players taunting and celebrating though are quite entertaining.

Suggestions: Make some Xbox quality graphics next year. How about making a good looking crowd up close and a ref with a detailed face. Also for next year, if I own NCAA Football 2k3 and I save, let me bring seniors over to the NFL. Very good job all around though.

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 NFL Blitz 2002

Overall: Blitz 20-02 is completely revamped. And although it's a lot better, it still lacks greatly in the lasting appeal department. All the animations are smooth and the graphics are sweet, but the fact that the actual play is not as long as choosing a play really makes it a snore fest. Keep in mind I have not played multiplayer yet, but this game doesn't offer much.

Gameplay: I was expecting the new Blitz game to be as awesome as NHL Hitz was. Leaning a teeny weeny bit towards the simulation side, tons of new hits, and non-stop action. Instead, I got tons of new hits except you usually do the same 3 and on occasion do a new one, choosing your play takes longer than the actual play itself, and way too fast. This game was fun for the first quarter. After that, I was already hearing the same commentary lines, seeing a new hit 1 out of every 6 times. If I could see those new hits more often, it might've made it more appealing. Also, the cheapness factor is back. I was dominating against the Carolina Panthers in my first game (as would be expected since Carolina sucks). Then they get 3 touchdowns in a row. One of them was complete non-sense. A guy jumped half way across the field and made a one handed catch, juked 5 of my guys and got a touchdown. He wasn't even on fire! Another weird thing is whoever you pass the ball to, the number of their jersey switches to the QB's #. WAS-UP-WIT-DAT???

Graphics: Characters are highly detailed. The stadium architechture is also detailed. That's where it stops. There is absolutely nothing on the sidelines. No benches. No coaches. No ref. No water coolers. No photographers. You get the point. Plus the audience isn't even that good looking. The football still looks like an orange blob. The "fire" texture also isn't that impressive. Great job on characters and stadium, awful job everywhere else.

Audio: Tackle noises are awesome. So are the grunts from guys getting tackled. But yet again, this is where it stops. The crowd is never into it. They are deathly mute on my surround system. The catch noises, fumble noises, and hurdle noises are just so cartoony. It doesn't blend with the loud rough noise of the hits. Commentary is bad. The color commentator whoever he is blows big time. He absolutely ruins it. The play-by-play guy was awesome in NHL Hitz. I love the commentary by him in that game. But in this game, it looks like the color commentator took up all the room on the disc allowing the play-by-play guy to have nothing good to say. Thus, bad commentary that has some really really really pathetic jokes.

Suggestions: Make this game more !&%$@#* appealing. I'm sick of doing the same 4 hit animations over and over. Let me see those other ones more often. You know how you could check through the glass in NHL Hitz? How about we can tackle someone through the water table on the sidelines? Improve the commentary to NHL Hitz quality or better. Maybe this is a multiplayer game, but it offers nothing 1 player wise.

Overall Score: 7.0 / 10 Gunvalkyrie

Overall: This is one of those games you have to master before it becomes rewarding. The first 1/2 of the 1st board is boring, but once you start running back and get the chain gun, that's when the fun starts :). The controls were a bit odd, but I easily adjusted to them in about an hour and a half. The game instantly becomes a lot harder and requires to use some of your rocket pack techniques. And even though I get stuck on half the puzzles, I absolutely love it.

Gameplay: Let me say first off this game is hard. I got used to the controls rather quick and have only died by falling into a pit. The part that is challenging is the puzzles. At times, you can't advance until you kill every single enemy, but that 1 enemy could be anywhere from where you are and at the beginning of board. So a 20 minute search begins and finally you find the enemy kill it and can advance. Reaching platforms is sometimes difficult as I undershoot the platform or completly over shoot it thus my guy falling to the ground and me having to start all over again. This game takes time to learn. I've only played this game about 5 hours and I am no where near becoming close to mastering this game. However, it always feels like I'm getting better and better which sucks me back into the game. I also like the fact you constantly upgrade your weapons and armor. The only problem I have with gameplay is my guy constantly locks on to the wrong person. Someone is like right next to me yet I'm still shooting someone 50 yards away from me. If there was a button that would let me alternate I'd appreciate it.

Graphics: The graphics on this game are very impressive. Everything including little things found on the enviroment appear to have a very high polygon count. I also like the menus. Very purrrrty. Nice eye candy all around.

Audio: I'm not to impressed with the sound in this game. Though it doesn't suck, it's far from great. The weapon noises are futuristic and seem right on, but your enemies make these noises that really don't scare you that much. The quality sounds like a 86/kbps song. The voice acting is ok but isn't that great. The music also doesn't seem suitable for a sci-fi game such as this.

Suggestions: All around good game. Maybe improve the sound effects and add some better music. Get some professional actors to do the movie scenes and how about a button to alternate which guy your firing at.

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 Madden NFL 2002

Overall: I could play this game for ages. The game is very well rounded. Even though it's a port, it's still the #1 football game out (unless Blitz is better which I haven't played yet). It just has a believable TV style representation. Coaches celebrating on the sidelines, players celebrating after a touchdown, the replays (especially the Matrix replays and the sack replays) all add to a great TV style presentation that looks great and plays awesome. There are plenty of game modes to choose from like Practice, Two-minute drill, and my favorite, Franchise Mode. Start off with any team and sign players to make them amazing (even if they are the Carolina Panthers you can make them amazing. Sorry you can't bring Ray Carruth back).

Gameplay: Unlike Fever, Madden has some pretty nasty tackles. Though not as devastating as some you see in the Blitz series, they are still painful. I ran through the line with Ray Lewis in franchise mode playing as the Giants and absolutely crushed Donovan McNabb. It sounded like I killed him with the painful collision noise and him making this girly scream. Then the replay showing it's brutality over and over. Pass coverage and recieving in this game is an art. If you lead your man (offense or defense), chances are you got the ball. It's not very easy to learn as most newbies I play with always press the catch button way too early and just jump up straight in the air and miss the ball completely. But once you learn how to, you could catch in triple coverage. The play call challenging is a bit weak. You can only challenge the spot of the ball. However, the computer sometimes reviews it anyways but they can review for reasons like did both feet touch the ground etc. What is the purpose of having it in if everytime you challenge it's overruled but everytime the game challenges it it's an automatic overruling? None the less, franchise will keep you playing for hours.

Graphics: I was surprised to see how much more detail went in to the player. Even though it's a port, they are pretty close to Xbox quality. Everything else looks right out of the PS2 game from the ref, to the audience and to the cardboard camera men and photographers. More special effects were added as well. The field gets torn up a lot more than the PS2 version. Players helmets get scratched and nicked. Turf gets stuck in players facemasks. The players get dirty a lot quicker. Just some teeny things I noticed.

Audio: In game sounds are great. Most tackles are painful because of how painful they sound not how they look. Grunts and screams are heard whenever someone is being blocked or tackled. The crowd noise usually brings the game to life on many occasions. Plus they have chants on occasion like D-Fence. The commentary is awesome in this game. Although most of the time the stupid stuff John says makes you want to punch him or say "Yeah John. That's why your not coaching anymore you dumba** ." John and Pat continue off each other which adds a ton of realism. You won't hear the same line in the same game twice. Once or twice you might but most games everytime they talk it's something different. EA always does great with commentary.

Suggestions: Make the commentary just as good as this year. What are you guys gonna do without Pat Summerall? All I know is, don't put Dan Dierdoff in. Add some more awesome tackles. Try to beef up the graphics for the Xbox version a bit more. A very awesome job. Best football series out in my opinion. Keep up the good work.

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 NFL Fever 2002

Overall: After playing both NFL2k2 and Madden 2002, I decided to try another football game. Unfortunately, NFL Blitz 20-02 wasn't in, so I decided to rent this. Overall this game is good for it's first year but if I had a choice between this or any other football game, this game would defintely be last in line. Just the way it's a blend of NFL2k and Madden. I don't think it's just the right blend like most people. The game moves in a weird way and almost everytime my wide reciever runs slower than the linebackers even with turbo. It's almost impossible to have a 50 yard touchdown pass unless your in the end zone. The tackles in this game are rather disappointing. Compared to the other 3, Fever defintely comes in last place for best tackles. I also have a lot of trouble on defense. I really don't recommend this game to anyone. You want over-the-top, try Blitz. If you want simulation, try Madden. You want arcade style, try NFL2k2.

Gameplay: I find this game very hard on defense and very time consuming on offense. On Defense, whenever a pass is thrown, either it's an interception or the AI catches it by luck and scores a touchdown. In my case it's a 50/50 thing. All the games I've played the AI has never been on 4th down. On Offense, it's simple to run for a first down on one or two runs. It's simple to pass for a first down, but my longest pass was only 25 yards. Anything beyond that, the defense is on the reciever like rabid wolves. I also don't like how if you do the spin move you break almost every tackle. If Fred Taylor tries a spin move on Ray Lewis, he's going to get killed. But not in this game. Good ol' Fred can spin through almost anyone. It's an ok system that could easily be improved upon. I know this game had to be a launch title but I got a feeling this game will be a lot better next year. Although not as good as the 2k series first year attempt, it could be worth a rental.

Graphics: Probably the only thing I really like about this game. Player models and faces are awesome. The D-Line is huge while Wide Recievers are for the most part scrawny. The grass or turf is unbelievably realistic. The ref is also pretty detailed as well. As for the crowd, I haven't really looked at them a lot so I'm not sure. There aren't any jaggies in this game and logos, player numbers and names are all easy to read.

Audio: I'm not a real big fan of the sound department. The commentary isn't all that repetitive as in NBA Inside Drive, but they are very slow. Not serious lag like in SD! 3, but it is noticable. The tackling noises and guys hitting the ground sound like something from and old Sega Genesis game. When helmets and shoulder pads collide (ex. O-Line and D-Line run into each other after the hike) it sounds like somebody kicking an aluminum can. When compared to Madden, Fever sound effects lose by a lot.

Suggestions: An ok first year try. Improve the commentary. Take example from EA Sports games and see how they do commentary so well. Let me unlock teams by doing something else besides doing the simple training drills. Have a hell of a lot more tackling animations. Make all the sound effects sound realistic. If a PS2 port is better than your game, it needs some serious work.

Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 Dead or Alive 3

Overall: I've been playing the DOA series since the DC version came out. I was instantly hooked. It was the first fighting game I played with a tag mode and double team moves. Me and my buddies played it forever. DOA2 Hardcore was pretty much the same thing except you got rewarded for playing the 1 player. You got 2 hidden characters (Bayman, Tengu) and some costumes. When DOA3 came out, I heard nicknames like "DOA 3: What Hardcore should've been". So I decided to rent it. For the most part, I'm happy. The areas I'm not happy though are the 1 player. All you unlock are movies. You don't get any goodies. You don't even get to use Tengu in this one. At least they left my man, Jann Lee, in the game. A couple people got taken out (dunno who), however, some new characters are in (Brad Wong and Christie to name a couple). The X-Octagon is by far my favorite board. There are a bunch of people outside the octagon screaming at the top of their lungs as you and your opponent are beating the snot out of each other. Then whenever you knock someone into the Octagon, they get electricuted and the lights go out for a moment. Very good job with detail. The multi-tiered enviroment. If you've never played a DOA game, this is a must buy. If you've played DOA 2 Hardcore, there isn't much new here except a couple new character and boards.

Gameplay: This is one of the best control systems for a fighting game. It is very easy to learn a characters moves and then execute 5-9 hit combos. Combo throws are also easy to learn. The one player mode only rewards you with a movie about the character you just won the game with that leaves you puzzled. The 4 player mode is where this game wins me over. Tekken Tag Tournament doesn't even come close to this tag mode. Double team moves are a piece of cake. Depending on where you are standing, the double team moves vary (i.e. next to a wall, behind the person etc.) What's nice about the control system is although you can master moves, you can also do just as well mashing buttons (for most of the characters) which gives beginners a lot of confidence and keep them coming back for more. Multiplayer is a non stop blast. If your looking for a one player game, you won't find a good one here. However, with the add-on coming in next months issue of OXM, it may be just what your looking for.

Graphics: Another reason I bought this game was the graphics. Absolutely outstanding. The enviroments are beautiful and very rich with detail. Unlike DOA 2, you won't find jaggies here. All characters clothing and faces are very detailed and have no jaggies. The way some special effects look are baffingly. Knock someone in the water and watch the water splash up. Walk through snow and leave feet tracks or fall in it and leave a distorted snow angel. Knock someone out a window and the glass breaks very realistically. One thing I liked was when people got electricuted. The X-Octagon people are stuck to the octagon for a second and then collapse. Another board you knock someone out the window and you knock them through and electric sign as it takes more damage. A great job here.

Audio: Electric noises are awesome. Guys hitting the ground, concrete, water, or snow vary adding a ton of realism. Punches, kicks, and grabs all sound very painful. Knocking someone into a wall is defintely a cool noise. It almost sounds like you knocked them through it. The music isn't exactly that great but the sound effects sometimes over power the music.

Suggestions: Make it worth while that I beat the game with everyone. I want some goodies. Add more characters. I felt like there wasn't enough selection. Make sure you keep Jann Lee in he kicks ass! So just improve the 1 player and maybe add somethin fun to the tag mode and next year you'll be just as succesful. Don't forget those gorgeous gir

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 Blood Wake

Overall: I am an absolute lover of the Twisted Metal Series (err...TM1, TM2. and TM: Black. TM3 and 4 s*cked the big one). So when I saw the commercial of this game, I was automatically thinking TM on water. So I picked it up and was impressed with everything. The water effects are just amazing. The one player story is a bit...weak. I don't really pay attention to the still framed movies so I just skip'em. The only reason I play it is you unlock stuff after each mission including boats (which there are a ton of), levels, and modes. The later missions are also a bit of a challenge and I just love retrying over and over. It's very satisfying blowing the living hell out of everything. If you are a fan of the TM series, I'd recommend picking it up.

Gameplay: Now my only problem really is the controls. They are fine except the movement. I can't stand using my left joystick to turn, go fowards, and go backwards. If you over shoot somebody and want to go backwards, you are a sitting duck for easily 5-7 seconds I always stick with going forward and making sharp turns. I like how all the ships don't have the same chain gun or the same weapons. Some have torpedos while others have missiles, some have a fast chain gun and some have a slow, more powerful chain gun etc. The multiplayer I love playing. You can go up against the computer or against your friends. This is probably the only game where I don't absolutely dominate in. Don't get me wrong, I win almost all the time but it's a challenge. Like I said, I'm a TM fan so I absolutely love this game.


Graphics: Everything looks amazing. The ships are very detailed. The water looks like a real life ocean and explosions are pretty awesome for the most part. The enviroment is good for the most part. Buildings and booeys look awesome but the land looks awfully plain but that shouldn't bother you since your suppose to be playing in the water.

Audio: The chain gun sounds amazing. I mean it sounds like it came out of movie that's how amazing it sounds (at least with Dolby 5.1). The Asian music isn't something you'll take a likeing for and is pretty annoying a lot of the time. Explosions are pretty loud for the most part and weapons being shot and the impact of'em sound very well. Sound effects wise very good job. The music isn't too good and it doesn't support the custom soundtrack.

Suggestions: Fix the movement controls a bit. Add some more multiplayer modes and do something about that funky 1 player storyline like animated movies or not so a cheesy story. Pretty good job all around.

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 Amped: Freestyle Snowboarding

Overall: First off, if I were to recommend a snowboarding game to anyone, I'd say it's SSX Tricky. Amped would be second but that's just my personal preference. The control system isn't exactly pick-up-and-play but it takes only about 15 minutes to learn before you can execute a perfect 720 Japan Air. This game is an awesome ohne player experience. I could easily play one player for 2 months wihtout getting bored since you constantly unlock new places to go snowboarding, more attributes, new stats, and most importantly, more publicity. The one player mode is something you have to experience.

Gameplay: One thing I love about this game is the go anywhere, do whatever, trick off of everything attitude. There are several different paths to take and plenty of huge jumps and grinds. Landing moves in front of camera men is vital not only in earning more publicity but giving you more attribute. In the beginning, you'll only be able to land a 720 1/4 times. Once you get a bit more attributes, you'll be able to execute 1080's like no tommorow. Landing big tricks isn't the trickest thing in this game. Impressing some of the sponsers is quite hard and sometimes it takes DAYS to make a sponser feel Amped. But once you do, it unlocks new clothes, goggles, and sometimes new boards with some awesome attributes. The only problem I got with this game is you can't play 2 players simaltaneously. But if your looking for a snowboarding game that has an awesome 1 player experience, this is defintely it.

Graphics: Everything looks amazing in this game. The snow looks incredibly real. The riders and photographers have a ton of polygons put on them. They look absolutely amazing. The enviroment looks like an exact replica of an outdoor enviroment complete with very real trees, ditches, ice patches, and dunes. Yet another example of how much graphical power the Xbox can hand out and this was only a release title.

Audio: There is a ton of music included already, but this is one of those titles that allows you to add your own custom soundtracks. The sound effects from the wipeouts, to the camera taking pictures, to the carving of the snow, all the way to the riders voices are awesome and seem right in place. A very good job in this department.

Suggestions: Include simaltaneous human riders on the screen at once or at least System Link capabilities. Add some more mountains and keep improving those awesome looking riders and boards. Maybe include some more tricks. Just some suggestions. This is one hell of a 1 player experience.

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 James Bond 007: Agent Under Fire

Overall: The only thing I can honestly say I hate about this game are load time. I played the GC version and this game loads in a couple seconds but for some reason it takes a great deal longer on the Xbox. Everything else is basic or good but nothing revolutionary or outstanding. Plenty of pre-set control options including the double stick one which is my favorite since I used it in Halo. The one player mode is the easiest FPS I've played ever. To do missions requires no exploration or trial and error whatsoever. The missions are very easy and you'll find yourself restarting once are twice. Speaking of restarting, after you die you start from the beginning almost every time. Even though the one player is simple, you do get rewarded as there are a ton of cheats to unlock. Since the game is fun yet not at all revolutionary, it's appeal dies rather quickly so it's only worth a rental.

Gameplay: All around the gameplay is well rounded but still has some flaws. Like when your are being shot, I never know which side I'm being shot from. Plus, the screen keeps flashing white with every bullet that hits me so sometime I over see the enemy. The movment controls are very simple and you'll get use to them very quickly. Switching gadgets, switching weapons, jumping, and firing is quite complicated and takes a bit more time to get used to. I love the gadgets in this game. The Q-Rocket and Q-Claw are very fun to have in multiplayer. The Q-Claw allows you in the multiplayer mode to literally grab a hold of everything where as the single player mode you can only use the claw in certain areas. If you have low gravity on, use your Q-Rocket and float in the air easily 10-15 seconds and have mid-air battles. Gameplay moves way too fast to have any sniper battles since you'll be killed very easily. The AI in one player is rather dumb and is easy to kill except when they are behind you. The BOTS in multiplayer, however, are a great deal more challenging. I love playing them since they are just as smart as me on Medium difficulty and Medium agression and they provide me more competition than my friends do. Something I wish Halo had included but none the less the BOTS in this were done very well.

Graphics: Good but nothing special. Between the graphics on the PS2 and the Xbox, the only difference in the clarity of the graphics. Everything just looks polished. Other than that, it doesn't seem more than 100 more polygons were added. Guns look awesome as do enviroments. What's odd is when shooting a wooden crate wood keeps flying off yet the crate never explodes and when shooting glas you just leave this weird hole and you can't shatter about 80% of the glass you see in single player. Barrel explosions are rather lame but when you lay down 5-6 mines together it makes a more than satisfying explosion :) .

Audio: There are a lot of things I dislike about the sound. First off, the guns. The sound is good but the volume is just too quiet and it takes away whatever power any gun has even with Dolby Digital 5.1 Another thing you'll notice is this game got no licensing to any music other than the James Bond theme song which is EXTREMELY over played. Open up a door with the Q-Laser *DA-DUN..DA-DUN!* Make something explode *DA-DUN..DA-DUN!* For some odd reason, however, they don't play the song when you see some of the extremely attractive Bond babes in the game :( . Voice acting is pretty good in this even though Pierce Brosnan or any past Bonds do the voice acting.

Suggestions: This appears to be a base game with some new introductions like the Q-Claw allowing you to grab anything and bring you everywhere. Next Bond game (which we all know will be one), add something cool for the GC and Xbox versions again and make a more appealing a difficult one player. Put blood back in this game and if I can see my bullets for more than a second than increase the speed.

Overall Score: 7.0 / 10 Fuzion Frenzy

Overall: I have had quite a bad history with party games like these. My younger sister loved the Mario Party series and since it was the only video game she absolutely loved, I got it for her. I had to sit there and play it for hours and I HATED IT! Then I bought Halo and played the demo and man it was pretty good. So I decided to rent it since my sister loves it. This time, however, this game is pretty awesome. Some of these mini-games are alright, but the rest are really good or just plain addicting. I will find myself playing just Sumo, Twisted System, or Hockey for hours non-stop. How little things like that could make you play a game for hours is beyond me, but it's fun as hell and multiplayer in this is a non-stop blast.

Gameplay: Very basic but that isn't a bad thing at all. If you play this game a lot, you begin to remember what A and B do in each mini-game. Even though the controls are simple, the game is still in-depth with enviroments changing and new things being added to the game as you progress like bombs or weapons or shield etc. The response is very quick and the gameplay is always fast paced. There are 2 types of play: Tournament mode (where you compete against 3 other human or AI players and progress through levels. In the end, the person with the most points wins) and mini-game frenzy (where you play several min-games of your choice). If you play tounament mode, and play a bunch of mini-games you dislike a great deal, try the mini-game frenzy and experiment with all the mini-games until you find some you like. Trust me there are some where you will have trouble putting the controller down after 6 hours even if your playing by yourself. Even though you can't unlock anything by beating tournament mode, the amount of mini-games and 4 human controller players make this highly entertaining.

Graphics: The faces are animated and pretty detailed. Character models are pretty basic but the camera is always at a distance (excluding the close-ups after a mini-game). Enviroment design and background design are very detailed and very well done. Not incredibly detailed, but more than enough polygons to keep you impressed. The menus are rather basic but it doesn't bother me that much.

Audio: This game sounds amazing. Everything just is just great. Character voices clearly show a character's personality. The sound effects in this game are surprisingly realistic and not cartoony and are very satisfying especially after hitting someone with a bomb or a plant :D . The music in this game is very good. However, if you don't like it, then just use music off your hard drive. The options menu makes it seem like it's a Music test but it's actually the soundtrack you hear in the game. An outstanding job in the sound department.

Suggestions: Reward me for beating this game one player. Maybe add a story mode for one player appeal. Add lots of more fun mini-games and some more characters. An excellent job all around.

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 Wreckless: The Yakuza Mission

Overall: I saw the case at my rental store and wasn't to sure if I should rent it. I look on the back of the box and there is a huge monster truck that is dazzling in graphical beauty. So I rent it and frankly, I want my money back. This game has very little to offer and very little to like. By the way, if you have played GTA3 for at least 3 hours, you won't like this game. The damage on the cars is nice to have but your car can never explode no matter how bad it's getting beat down. 3 things in this game are rather dumb: The movie scenes, the missions, and the car physics. The movie scenes have alright graphics but the speach is very s-l-o-w and is not in sync of the persons lips. The missions are so simple. Race to destroy stuff before someone else does, retrieve stuff, and destroy stuff. That is really all you do. The missions are timed. Any game with timed missions I absolutely hate. I can't drive around and have fun like GTA3. I must do my mission. Now car physics bother me a bit. These crashes really don't look that real or that great. When I run into a pedestrian car, it looks pretty awesome, but I whenever I go off a jump or get flipped it's like getting tossed around inside a huge dryer. Mission mode is not to hard. You unlock more vehicles as you go on but with no mode where you can just drive around and do whatever you want, this game is defintely not worth purchasing. This game is like NFL Fever. I don't know why people like it.

Gameplay: 2 scenarios for mission mode. One as 2 guys and one as 2 police girls. Both storylines stink. Both missions are pointless. This game really doesn't offer you anything else besides a mission mode and unlocking cars to use in mission mode. There is no multiplayer mode or free ride mode. Just time missions. Because of that, it damages the replay value a great deal and barely makes this a rental.

Graphics: I got to give the game credit here. This game looks amazing. The cars are incredibly detailed as is the surrounding enviroment, people on the streets, and stuff lieing around to run over. This game is eye-candy. Too bad this game isn't as good as it looks.

Audio: This is defintely the worst part of the game. The music is fine but as for sound effects, they aren't what they should be. When I crash into a car I want it to sound like I'm crunching metal. Instead it gives me a cheap scraping noise no matter how fast I charge at a guy. Speech in the cutscenes is very out of sync with the lip movement. There is really no other noise except people screaming to get out of the way, cars crashing into each other, engine and tire noises, and cars crashing into each other. Other than that, nothing.

Suggestions: Give me something else to do besides pointless timed missions like missions that aren't timed or a free ride mode. Add a lot of more sound effects. Keep the graphics the way they are they look amazing. Fix the cutscenes and make this game worth more than a rental if you make a sequel.

Overall Score: 6.0 / 10 Halo: Combat Evolved

Overall: Well after having this game for 3+ months now, I thought it would be good to write my own review of Halo since I thought my opinion would change from the first day I played it. Well, it didn't. Halo is still the best Xbox game and by far one of the top 3 console games I've played in years. I haven't even played a System Link or online game and I can still say I never get tired of this game. The story-mode puts you in the role of Master Chief fighting covenant aliens and the flood. This is probably the first alien sci-fi story that is really great. The game is intense, and once you meet up with the flood, it just takes it to a whole new level. Multiplayer with even just 2-4 players is great vehicles. The amount of customization in multiplayer is a great addition to a FPS. Choose from the ton of pre-made modes or create your own. Choose how many kills, if you'll have shields, how much life you'll get, if there are teams, the type of mode (slayer, king of the hill, race, CTF), what set of weapons you'll have on the map, if you want vehicles or not, what kind of radar you'll use, etc. Multiplayer with or without vehicles is a non-stop blast that'll keep you and your friends who actually like first-person shooters playing forever and ever. The controls are awesome too. Two types of grenades (the frag which you throw and it blows up almost immediately and the plasma which takes longer but also gets stuck to people.) The double stick movement system is my favorite thing. Move with the left stick, move the gun with the right stick. This is just a great game.

Gameplay: This is where a lot of FPS's might want to take a page or pages out of Halo's book (not the real one FYI). Vehicles are so awesome. I've never played a game with vehicles and if none of the weapons in the game make you go "OoOoOoOo" or "ahhhhhhh" then the vehicles will. The chain gun in the back of the warthog fires very rapidly and when bullets hit the ground, the dirt flies up about 5 feet in the air. The tank is incredibly powerful and can transport 4 other team members. The banshee which can only be used in one-player allows you to fly all over the place and have your own alien-style Top Gun fights. The communication throughout the game is great. Marines communicate perfectly. At one point in the game, you board a covenant ship and one marine goes "I don't think there are any covenant here" but then a bunch of covenant enter the room and another marine fires and says "No aliens here...you just had to open your mouth!" Marines also after killing aliens will say "Get up so I can kill you again!" or sometimes go over and keep shooting the alien as blood is flying out of the alien. Aliens when they are aware of your prensence alert other aliens by saying "Enemy!" or some aliens that don't say any English phrases yell in an Alien language and within a second you'll start being fired at from all sides. Gameplay is always at a very rock-solid 60FPS. I've never experienced lag in this game. Even after beating this game once, I keep coming back for more. This game is just so much fun. Plus it gives you more practice for multiplayer. The only thing I don't like is there are no BOTS in multiplayer. When noone is around, they would be kind of nice to have.

Graphics: The original TV I first played Halo on was using a terrible TV and I thought the graphics were terrible. I eventually got a new 32" TV and it is much clearer. I don't use S-Video or Component video and this game still looks great. Although the characters are detailed, I'm more impressed with the enviroment. Everything is just so detailed. Tress don't look like blurs from up close, the water looks quite purrrrty, and the vehicles are quite detailed as well. This game has so many guys on screen, yet, they are all incredibly detailed. There are no real signs of jaggies, but some how the sequel will have a ton of graphical improvements.

Audio: Everything in this game sounds right on. The explosion of the frag grenade is very powerful and very realistic. The plasma grenade sounds kind of weak, but I've never seen or heard a plasma grenade cause they don't exist so who am I to say it sounds weak when I never heard one before? Gun fire is great. Vehicles sound great when accelerating or when slamming the brakes. Voices are clear crisp and dialogue is never repetitive. This is an excellent sounding game.

Suggestions: Make it so you can use the Banshee in multiplayer. Add more vehicles and get some more weapons in there. Try to put in ones that have never been in any other game so they become something Halo 2 will stand for. Add more multiplayer boards including more that support vehicles. Let me be able to unlock stuff for beating the game and let me be able to play as someone else besides a colored Master Chief. These are just tiny complaints and ideas. It's a great game! Make the one just as fun as this one is!

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 WWF Raw

Overall: A lot of good things in this title. WWF Raw is not a disappointment, but at the same time, it's not a good game. This is a base game. So if you are expecting those half a**ed TLC matches you see in Smackdown! 3, then stay away from this title or wait till next year. The title mode is no where near as fun as Revenge's. Probably because it doesn't have the tag-team championship where you can team with a friend. Create-a-wrestler excels in some areas but lacks in others. The entrances are very detailed. Everything from pyro to titantrons to the lights and what color and how they flash etc. The faces though really don't allow you to make anyone look like they do in real life. I've only managed to make a good looking Kevin Nash, Sabu, and New Jack. Everyone else I try comes out like crap. They managed to sneak in a lot of the real life wrestlers attires in there.

Gameplay: A pretty good control system. Not as good as AKI's Nintendo 64 system, but a lot better than Yukes Smackdown! system. Finally a game that let's me do moves from the side. There's nothin like doing a powerbomb or a top rope superplex through a table for the first time. I don't like how the double feature is only activated for special moves and moves through the tables. Even when finishers are broken up, they still show the double feature which is kind of odd. The computer in this game bothers me a great deal. It is almost impossible to do anything outside the ring. They always seem to think there is a 10 second count out so they always run back to the ring. Having all those weapons is quite awesome. Some of them, however, are pointless and after a while, you don't really bother picking up the swan tutu or the chef hat. It's not that great, but it's a very good first attempt. As for multiplayer, I liked it a lot at first, but now it's just flat out dull. I haven't played this game in ages. It's good but it loses it's appeal to quick.

Graphics: I just love the appearance of this game. After all the pyro you can still see the mist from it. You can see the sweat on guys and on occasion when you hit them it flies off them. The wrestlers are very detailed. Some of them are amazing like The Undertaker, Tajiri, and Raven but some guys like Triple HHH are just atrocious. Everything has very nice design and very smooth. Very well done

Audio: The only 2 sounds I like are the sound of someone going through a table and the sound of a weapon being broken. Everything else sound nothin like the real thing. From the punches to the way guys hit the mats to the grunts. Everything just sounds weird. There isn't any sound when you do moves on weapons which is also odd. Entrance music, however, is dead on and high quality.

Suggestions: Make next year's not a base game. Add a ton of gimmick matches or a couple of very well done ones. Up the level of interactivity again next year. Do somethin to make the title mdoe interesting like tag team championship where it let's me play with a human player and not just a computer player. Make it so the AI doesn't run back to the ring all the time in a hardcore match. A good first effort on a new system.

Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 Rallisport Challenge

Overall: This game is still not growing old on me. After 4 days of playing this whenever I can, I have to say this is probably one of the few racing games I enjoy. This is probably my first racing that awards me for winning. Unlocking new cars with more torque and higher horsepower is very rewarding. Also unlocking rallycross and hill climb for multiplayer not to mention extra boards for rally and ice racing is very rewarding and makes me come back for more. I usually finish in first overall but usually finish in 2nd but you can still advance with finishes like that. The controls in this are very sensitive. I'm used to games that are much more loose when it comes to turning so it was extremely difficult to adjust. This game truely shines visually and you'll love everything from the trees to the ice to the shattered windows. Multiplayer with 2 player mode didn't really keep me satisfied. As for 3 player and 4 player, races are really competitive and it's easy to get knocked to the back of the pack, but it's also common for that same person to finish in first.

Gameplay: Mixing it up is what keeps this game interesting. Sometime I'm into doing a couple of ice racing course then a couple of rallycross racing courses. Once you learn how the steering differs between all 4 modes you'll love this game a lot more. One of the things I like about this game is you can choose your car settings and tire settings before the race actually starts. What turns me off to some other racing games is the fact you choose it before a race and then when you choose somethin by accident you got to wait till the race loads, then quit, go through the main menu, choose your car again, and then change the settings. Just too much time. Having the ability to do this right before the race starts and being able to quickly go back is very nice. Another thing that adds to the challenge a bit more is different ground textures throughout the race. Sometimes it'll be 100% Ice or sometime 25% Gravel and 75% Tarmac. When you have a 25%-75% type of course, it's hard to choose the right tires as your turning will vary a lot between each ground texture. The fact you can only drive so far away off the road before it brings you back on the course kind of stinks, however, I could see how people could cut 1/3 of the race on some courses. What's nice about crashed or when you flip is the camera stays at where your car was on all fours last which adds an added action effect. What's also nice is you can knock signs on to the course and when you drive into bushed they make noise and bounce around. A very nice job in going into small details if I do say so myself.

Graphics: This game is by far one of the top 3 prettiest games out. From the signs, to the trees, to the bushes, to the incredible looking ground textures, to the drivers in the car, and to the very pretty looking cars themselves this game just shines everywhere. What made me come back to this game for more is car damage. Side windows get smashed out when you whack'em hard. Windshields can be cracked and I think after taking a ton of damage it eventually smashes. Bumpers get bent and doors get dented. It all looks so real. Mud flies up in rallycross races or when it rains. The ice in this game just looks amazing in my opinion. Everything looks amazing and shines like a star.

Audio: Don't get me wrong. The car engines I really like. No matter how realistic or not realistic they are, I like'em. As for variety, there are only about 3-5 different noises maybe per car. I'd think I car that weighs a lot more and has an engine with 400 more horsepower than another car would sound different. I like how the guy sitting in shotgun helps you out in races and tells you on the fly with audio "Long sharp right" without any Smackdown! 3 style lag between words. A pretty good job but not as great as the other categories.

Suggestions: In Nascar Thunder 2002 they have a create-a-car. I also remember Top Gear Rally had there own create-a-car and you could make your own designs on the cars. Try and put that in the sequel. Also, try to get more engine noises and improve the sound. Last but not least, make a sequel because this game was just amazing and is one of the few racing games I play a lot.

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 Max Payne

Overall: This is hell of a long game that manages to stay fun. The controls take some getting use to but man I love the guns in this game! Bullet time is also a sweet addition. Almost 80% of my kills are with bullet time unless I'm using grenades.

Gameplay: New and innovative. It's nice to play a game with a gun in both hands at once. Bullet time turns it into a slow motion Matrix-style speed and your bullets noise slows down along with the speed of your enemies. Diving around the corner, activating bullet time, and shooting watching your bullets ripple and hit the guy is just awesome. The sniper rifel effect is awesome too. Zoom in all the way, shoot, and it follows the bullet in slow motion from a right behind camera view and then speeds up when it hits the guy. Very good job with special effects and good gameplay. The storyline in this game is also very freaky but very awesome. It's known what the storyline is about so I won't waste my time typing about it but none the less it is awesome.

Graphics: Not the most dazzling ever, but I still love the graphics on this game. Character faces, people's clothing, random stuff laying around (newspapers, posters, etc.), and the surrounding enviroments all look very good. Bullet time is also very well done is quite a sight to see a lot.

Audio: Very well rounded. The muffled noise of a TV with bad reception, radio with a bad reception, voice acting, and the noise of shots being fired. Throwing a Molotov Cocktail on someone is pretty funny.

Suggestions: Add more fun bullet time stuff. Have some more guns too. Like 2 in each category. How about some C4 as well? Another great storyline if there's a sequel that is more dark and creepy. A very good game. GO BULLET TIME EFFECTS! Good job on the game.

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 SSX Tricky

Overall: I can't stop playing this thing. It's sick! I really wasn't into renting this game but yesterday I decided "Why the hell not?" I played the first one and thought this was just like it. Man was I wrong! This game is so awesome. I can't stop playing 2 player with my brother. Non-stop close runs. The graphics are spectacular. The sound is amazing. What makes this game so great is the serious air, the millions of short cuts, and the UBER tricks.

Gameplay: Took me a lot of time to adjust from the original SSX on the PS2. The left joystick turns right punches and the d-pad flips and spins. Kind of a pain in the butt but this game is so fun you'll keep playing it and eventually learn how to control it properly. UBER tricks are so far out and look so awesome. One guy even does a break dance on his board. My favorites are Mac, Psymon, and Luthers UBER tricks. Characters are so funny. Psymon and Luther IMO are the most interesting out of all of them. Tricks are awesome, grinding is fun, and you got to love the short cuts. I also love the serious hang time you get on this game. It's sick! What's also cool is their is somewhat of a storyline in 1 player. You rough up someone, they talk to you after the race. Although they are one liners, it beats SD! 3's lame story mode anyday. I almost always fill Luther's agression meter to the top which ends up in the big man and me punching each other non-stop through the race. They also have some must see DVD content on how they made the characters, the tricks, etc. Its really good to watch before you start playing.

Graphics: Character models are nice. The detailed faces are very detailed. The crowd is the only slight downfall but it's still very good. The snow flying up when you carve is very realistic. The amount of costumes and boards leads to a lot of customization of your board (you must unlock costumes and boards in 1 player). The enviroments are fanatastic. The trees are detailed. The statues, building, and some wacky thing you find throughout the board are also very detailed. A very nice looking game in every single departement .

Audio: The noise of the board changes when you transfer to any texture on the ground. From the nice smooth carving of the powdered snow to the un-moveable ice sounding like you are scratching into the ground. Voice acting is top notch. Every character's voice sounds like your boarders actually feel PO'd when they get smacked around by another boarder or insult you for messing up a trick or just plain excited when they fly 50 feet in the air and do a 900 Rodeo EXPERIMENTAL. Riders stick with the personality you first hear when you select someone. Psymon is constantly insane. Mac is just a white person trying to be black but can pull off some sick tricks. Luther is just an angry big guy who can take out anyone. Although it doesn't really seem the audio in SSX needed improvment, in Tricky, it sounds a million times better. Although SSX Tricky doesn't have my favorite song from the first one (Surprize Packidge) they got a good soundtrack.

Suggestions: Make the next one as big of an improvement as SSX Tricky was to SSX. Awesome job! Maybe a superpipe or somethin. Also have like a downhill boardercross board with the objectives being a 1st place finish and the most trick points. Maybe somehow implement a good 4 player mode. Just some suggestions. No complaints about this game. Keep up the good work!

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 UFC: Tapout

Overall: This game is a complete package. I can't stop playing this game one player. The two-player mode I played with my friend from 2 P.M.- 5 A.M. It does feel a lot like the DC version of UFC, and it is. The counter system is still as fun as it was in the old days. You can get around a couple matches smashing buttons but playing against the computer on a higher difficulty or a experienced player will gurantee you getting your a** kicked. Still a fun game to play.

Gameplay: No problems executing combos or grabs. Very easy to learn but a lifetime to master. It's a bit odd on the Xbox controller but you'll get use to it.

Graphics: The graphics on this game are top notch. I'm not too familar with all the UFC fighters, but all the ones I know of look just like their real-life counterpart. The intros are very awesome as well. McCarthy (the referee) also looks great. My only complaint is the audience which still doesn't look that good, but I've yet to see any game with a incredibly detailed audience so I can live with it.

Audio: The impact of kicks and punches aren't that great. Crowd noise is nice. The impact of tackling someone onto the ground is very life like.

Suggestions: I love this counter system. Continue using it. Also, get guys like Shamrock and Abbott in the game. Think of something new besides a match being over once a submission is locked in. Try to improve the crowd graphics as well. Add more to the create a fighter.

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 NBA Inside Drive 2002

Overall: NBA Inside Drive is a very good first year attempt. Already, the Inside Drive series is better than the NBA Live series. Calling plays on the fly with the D-pad makes it very easy to set up plays and score easily. A lack of features, however, does hurt this game. There is no street mode, no franchise, and no practice modes. This game is not as good as NBA2k2 but it is still a strong game overall.

Gameplay: Probably the best part of NBA Inside Drive is the gameplay. Contrary to the title, it's quite to get an inside drive. Motion captured dunks by Vince Carter are quite amazing. At first, you'll do about 3 different dunks. However, once you get on a hot streak with one of your players, that's when the "real" dunks are capable of being executed. The animation has it's ups and downs. Like when you recover the ball on a defensive rebound or a steal, your run sideways first then begin to go up. Kind of like a pre-determined course they must travel. However, the A.I. you are facing do not have a pre-determined course and it's almost impossible to get on an open break. The passing is one of my favorite features. If you are in the path of a pass, you will steal. If you are trying to pass around a guy, you'll lean to your side and pass it. The bit of sloppy animation won't bother you but it is a nuisance to see.

Graphics: Wrinkled jerseys and very detailed bodies and faces. Facial animations are also very nice. The crowd is almost like NBA2k's where it looks good from a far but very bad up close. Replays and cut-scenes are also nice.

Audio: This is where the game needs major improvement. Commentary sounds very advanced at first but by the time you reach the 3rd quarter, you'll probably hear everything the annoucers have recorded into the game. The sound of the basketball bouncing is also nothing like it sounds like in real life. There is no real sound when you hit the backboard or the rim bending when you dunk the ball. The shoes never squeak on the floor. Not the best audio in a basketball game.

Suggestions: Add a franchise mode, a practice mode, and either a street mode and/or a dunk contest. Add more commentary recordings and try to cut down the lag between recordings like "The...Wizards....have 12 steals so far." Get rid of those pre-determined courses too. If Steve Francis is at half court and Shaq is at the bottom of the court, he shouldn't be able to catch up to him. All in all a good game. Oh add some more Vince Carter dunks. I like those a lot. All in all a good first year try. Keep up the good work.

Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 NHL Hitz 2002

Overall: I absolutely can not stop playing this game. This game had me playing by myself for hours. Then my dad got into it and he can't stop playing it which makes it a hundred times better! Love everything about the game.

Gameplay: This is probably the best control setup for any hockey game. X shoots. A passes. Y does a spin move. B checks. L or R turbos. Checking through the glass and over the boards is quite a thing to see. I never get old of it. The animation is just so beautiful. Also, when you get hit hard enough, you sometimes lose your helmet which can be kicked around and if hit by a puck deflects off of. The fights in this game are the best I've seen in a while. The NHL fights take no skill at all. These fights are much better and the punches look like the guy you are clobbering is really getting hurt. Although the uot; are unrealistic, they are fun to watch for a while. Don't really care for the 2 of them any more. A.I. is also cheap, but sometimes it makes the game better. Usually they take the lead by one and we head to O.T. Though my record in O.T. isn't that good, it's insanely fun.

Graphics: Alright not top notch but some great visuals none the less. Graphics have been improved greatly over the PS2 version. The game speed and animation are also a lot slower and a lot smoother. I have not had any slow down whatsoever. The game stays at the rock solid 60fps. The "fire" and "team fire" apperances are also enhances. Shots taken when en fuego also look much better. Checking animations are awesome. Guys fall get hit and fall down real hard. They are not real over the top which makes them awesome.

Audio: The crowd noise isn't to good when it comes to anything besides scoring a goal. Also different from the PS2 version is the shot noise. Instead of the sound of a gun being !&%$@#* ed then shot, it's an actual puck shot noise. The noise of hitting the post and crossbar are also the most realistic I've heard.

Suggestions: Man this game is tight I dunno how you'll top yourselves next year! All I can say is stick with the crazy check and fights are the bomb. Either add some more fatalities or take them out entirely and make the last punch you do seem extremely painful. Don't make the A.I. so cheap! A comeback to win 8-7 but were losing 8-3 at the end of the 2nd period is very cheap! 1 shot on the goalie and it went in! Improve the crowd noises. Also, try to get a franchise mode in and let be able to trade players with actual NHL teams not just my created teams.

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10

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