Tom Orry, Editor - Football Manager 2013, PC

Football Manager 2013 screenshot

As ever, I've been spending every lunch hour (and the odd evening) playing FM 2013, working to build Barcelona into the force it used to be before the previous manager let the team fill with OAPs. This goal has been partially achieved. I won the Spanish Cup and La Liga in my first season, but sadly crashed out of the Champions League after the group stage - probably not a huge surprise given that the aging players simply couldn't cope with such a busy schedule.

Still, I managed to add a few mid-20s stars in January, making it a good first season. In pre-season now I'm building the team, adding a string of high profile players (a new striker cost me £110m, but now I've got two 4.5 star forwards, one 4 star, and one 5 star-potential kid) and some solid reinforcement at the back. It's crazy that I've spent about £500m since taking over, but it was needed if the team was going to stay competitive as I've had four players retire and two see their stats plummet as they are past their best. In the crazy economy I'm playing in, no one with 3 stars can be bought for under £50m.

David Scammell, Deputy News Editor - SimCity, PC

SimCity (2013) screenshot

Time flies when you're having fun - and as I learned after calling in one of the game's disasters, Sims fly away when you've got a fire-breathing monster on the loose.

At the risk of getting in an early flip-flop, I enjoyed my time with SimCity greatly - the interface makes city-building intuitive, and Maxis' neat little touches, like police responding to robberies, or commuters waiting at bus stops, really do spring the city to life.

But I also left feeling a little nervous over its long-term appeal. My main concern lies with the size of your real estate. Each city seems far too small to allow for any real creativity, and I found that once I'd laid down my initial road layouts, I was often left with very little breathing room for future expansion. Because you can't expand outwards, you're forced to remove roads and smaller buildings to make room for larger, more impressive constructions or transport routes. And nobody likes tearing their city down, especially when it already seems to be working rather well.

EA's answer, it seems, is to encourage players to create new cities. But that's not how I, and I dare say you, would want to approach a game like SimCity. I'd much prefer to spend hours within a single city, building its districts and watching it flourish than being made to start again elsewhere.

It's terrific, then, but at this stage, SimCity's scope appears to be slightly more limited than I, and I'd wager many others expected.

Matt Lees, Video Production Editor - Dota 2

dota 2 ravage -

My Dota 2 obsession took a turn for the nasty this week, as we gradually creep closer to the amateur tournament that I signed up for with a group of friends. The game hasn't stopped being tremendous fun, but it's only now that I'm starting to realise it's closer to being an actual sport. We've all been assigned different roles to play, and failures to perform have seen tensions running high. I'm pretty sure we're at the bit that's like the 'act 2' of a feel-good movie, and we'll eventually come together to prove ourselves stronger like that famous Jamaican bobsleigh team. Either that or our lucky egg will end up smashed, and we'll never want to talk to each other again. It's incredibly exciting, but I'm also quite stressed.

Playing Strike Suit Zero on the Tuesday Live Stream was quite a lot of fun - especially when you unlock the crazy Gundam-style suit - but I'm probably fonder of indie game 10,000,000, the first game I chose to cover as part of our new weekly video feature INDIE FACE. I flipping love a good puzzle/RPG hybrid game. Maybe it's time to revisit Puzzle Quest?

Steve Burns, Reviews and Features Editor - FIFA 13, Vita

FIFA 13 screenshot

After finally managing to track down a copy for less than the 13 trillion dollars (approx) it costs on PS Store, I've been spending most of my travel time playing this. It might not have all the features of the home versions, but on the pitch it's as good if not better. And any game that enables me to put the boot into Arsenal any time, anywhere is a winner.

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Jam_Sponge's Avatar

Jam_Sponge@ MJTH

Clinkz is a BEAST. The trick with him is to use his ultimate ability to eat a big neutral creep in the jungle - then you get a temporary boost to HP and attack damage which lets you run off and gank someone/push a tower. Best way to use his invis speed is after you've done that: When they run away on low health you can use it to run past them and start shooting again.

BWAHAHAHA. Such an evil character. :D
Posted 10:53 on 28 January 2013
Grammartron's Avatar

Grammartron

Steaming through Forza Horizon - onto the Purple Wristband stage now, got about two-thirds of everything done. Lack of car models becoming slightly irritating now.

And halfway through my rookie year on NBA 2K13 MyCareer. 42 games down, and I'm now a starter for the Nuggets with a pretty fearsome SF, and looking like I'll make the starting line-up for the Rookie Showcase at All-Star Weekend. Team is 2nd in the Western Conference. None of this will mean anything to almost everyone here. But I am absolutely loving it!

Just started Ghost Trick on iOs too. Looks great, even after 10 mins on it it's clearly one of the better 'gamey' games on the platform.
Posted 10:04 on 28 January 2013
Endless's Avatar

Endless

Traded in half our gaming collection for DMC, F1 Race Stars and LEGO Star Wars: The Clone Wars. The latter of which hasn't even been put in the drive, let alone been played yet!

DMC is fun, but I find myself increasingly frustrated. Although I'm intrigued by the storyline, i'm progressing at a moderate pace, but I haven't felt really hooked on it. What I'm putting this down to is the combat, fun at first, gets overly contrived imo. Certain enemies require certain weapons to defeat and others very specific and calculated motions and setups. Which is fine and all adds to the challenge; While they're on their own.

When you get multiple types of enemies all requiring very different methods to despatch them it ruins the flow for me. It makes the combat feel disjointed and awkward, which usually leads to me getting close to a checkpoint after skating edgily around the battlefield singling out enemies for their demise in their specified manner, only to get caught by something like dodge not working or an attack not interrupting as I think it should; Then I just turn off and go play something else.

F1 Race Stars is quite frankly excellent. It feels like a karting game but with enough F1 mechanics to make it feel unique. You cant for example just fling your cart into a corner and do a little hop to powerslide and take the corner at any speed you like as with the likes of Mario Kart and other such karting games. You need to get your racing line and turn at the right time to make it round without hitting the wall; Often you'll even need to break to avoid going into rough ground or a wall. You can draft behind other karts to increase speed before catapulting yourself past them. There are numerous short cuts and every track has a secret shortcut that can only be used once a race but requires a hidden key to be picked up while you race.

There's also kart damage that slows your speed, get hit by powerups or track obstacles and your kart goes through 3 stages of damage. The only way to get back to your top speed is to go through the pit lanes strategically placed throughout the tracks. each team has their own perks for abilities, some can use a particular powerup 3 times instead of one, others get a boost to their slip-streaming or jumping boosts. It all adds to the flavour.

So far, F1 Race stars is my pick of the bunch and what makes it even better is it's 4 player split screen so myself, my wife and my 4 year old can all play at once!
Posted 02:24 on 28 January 2013
Njeezy's Avatar

Njeezy

I'm a little late to the party but I've started playing guild wars 2, I've also began Hammerlock's big game hunt on BL2, loving my hybrid mechromancer everything gets electrocuted... a lot.
Posted 00:50 on 28 January 2013
pblive's Avatar

pblive

Finished Paper Mario in a rush. Really wanted to play through a bit slower.

Went back to Black Ops 2 as well and realised it's far better than other COD games online for me. I feel more at home here and less hopeless! I might have to try to play more.
Posted 23:58 on 27 January 2013
MJTH's Avatar

MJTH

I really should be finishing, Paper Mario Sticker Star or NSMBU, or continuing AC3, or even starting with No Time to Explain, a game I had been hoping would get on steam for little over a year now....

But, I've just started learning how to play Dota 2, and that game takes up so much time it's crazy. After, watching the VG academy vids, I've started to do some training with bot games. I didn't want to start of with Dwarven Sniper since he's aparently really easy to get used to, so I've started out with Clinkz and Windrunner. Even though Clinkz does have an invisibility ability, I've been trying not to be cowardly with it, using it more for it's speed boost. Hopefully at some point I manage to get good at the game...
Posted 14:57 on 27 January 2013
munkee's Avatar

munkee

I've been playing a nice amount of Star Fox 64 3D. I used to love it on the 64 (Lylat Wars) and still love it now. The graphics overhaul is absolutely beautiful, too. I would like to see some more of these Nintendo 64, or even a few Gamecube remakes. 1080ยบ Avalanche would be welcome, as would Mario Golf.

I also bought Resident Evil: Revelations. The atmosphere is great and the visuals are very nice. The sound is fairly eerie so far, but the pistol sounds pathetic. I also don't like the enemies at the moment. The big grey (maybe blue, I'm colourblind :P) walking things are hopelessly uninspiring. I even preferred the big blobs on the beach at the very start. BUT, early days. In fairness I am enjoying the amount I've played. More so than Resident Evil 6 which grated on me enough to never want to look at it again.

Oh, and I think it was Tom Orry who mentioned Paper Galaxy. I've lost a lot of commuting time to that game. Love it.
Posted 13:44 on 27 January 2013
dudester's Avatar

dudester

I finished too the moon,

I have dipped into borderlands 2 a little but need to find motivation to dive into the new dlc.

Some medieval mastery of my claymore sword in chivalry. Theres something so satisfying about jumping in and finishing off other peoples hard work.

Also played around with various mods on left 4 dead with steam workshop now integrated with a click of a button I can turn he survivors into the borderlands characters or dinosaurs or in bikinis.
Posted 13:14 on 27 January 2013
Clockpunk's Avatar

Clockpunk

Finished Retro City Rampage, and can honestly say... the final stage was a really poor decision. Didn't really enjoy it at all which was a little disappointing. But everything else, including the challenge sets, make up for it, somewhat.

Also finally geting round to The Darkness 2. Not had much inclination to play games lately (rather busy with a myriad of other external things), and as I hadn't got that far in, decided just to start the game from scratch. Such a good (albeit linear, which after the freeform exploration of FarCry 3 and its like, is too limiting for my real liking...) title. Such a shame it didn't sell, and the planned single player DLC was cancelled by 2K.

@rb: I might just bid on your Halo 4 :p
Posted 12:58 on 27 January 2013
rbevanx's Avatar

rbevanx

Finished God of War 3 and thought it was average at best, not a 10/10 game which VG thought at all.

Also played a bit of Halo 4 Spartan Ops and I'm totally bored by it now and have since listed it on my ebay.
But I have played some of the wolfpack mode on Assassin's Creed 3 and really like it but can see myself getting bored of it rather quickly.
Posted 11:36 on 27 January 2013
FantasyMeister's Avatar

FantasyMeister

Still expanding my criminal empire in Life is Crime on Android. I now have 49 new friends, 49 locations, a territory stretching across Western Europe and can kill people at such exotically named locations such as Cafeteria El Carmen, Sindicato Autonomo Di Polizia, Anvimur Telecomunicaciones. S.L., and Allglass Windscreens, Merstham.

I also have contacts in the USA, France and China, which will be handy later on when I go jet-setting. All without leaving my desk, although I really should, it would bring a lot of new businesses within range for robbing, stealing, drug drops and stolen goods shenanigans.

I got around to reading the manual for Dishonored on 360 but it wasn't inspiring enough to get me to take the disc out of the case, the console is still only being used for the NowTV free trial - I've caught up on Harry Potter, watched every Bond movie and come to the conclusion that when it comes to personal entertainment for me games are where it's at.

Still also playing Texas Holdem Poker Deluxe, still a multi-millionaire, had my first ever Royal Flush and Dead Man's Hand (two pair, black Aces and Eights).

Overall, quite and unexpected and novel way for me to start 2013's gaming, but I'm loving every minute of it.
Posted 11:20 on 27 January 2013

Game Stats

Release Date: 01/01/2012
Developer: Valve
Publisher: Valve
Genre: Unknown
Rating: TBC
Site Rank: 312 10
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