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Ghost Recon Phantoms Features for PC

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Tom Orry, Editor - Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, PC, PS3, Xbox 360

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive screenshot

I've played most iterations of Counter-Strike over the years, but I've never been a huge fan. Having now seen out the 45 minute trial period on the Xbox 360, I feel the same about Global Offensive. This is going to make me sound like a complete noob (which I probably am to be fair), but the thing I struggle with the most is working out if that guy running towards me with a gun is on my side or not. Generally I'll spot someone, stare at them for a fraction of a second, go to pull the trigger, think better of it because I'm afraid I'm about to shoot a team mate, and then get shot in the face. A small part of my brain is telling me to hand over 1200 Microsoft Points in order to play the full game in order to get better and hopefully learn to enjoy it - the rest of my brain is telling me to play New Star Soccer instead.

Neon Kelly, Video Production Editor – Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, PC, PS3, Xbox 360

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive screenshot

By my reckoning, it has been at least eight years since I last played Counter-Strike to any serious extent. It's a long time to stay away from a franchise, especially one that's changed so little in the interim. Originally I planned to hold out on GO until I'd bought a new PC, but earlier this week I caved and bought the 360 version. And despite my initial concerns about how the game would handle on a pad, I have to say that it's bloody marvellous. I'd forgotten just how pure and focused it is; I've seen lots of newcomers moaning about the absence of killstreaks, unlocks, and sights to aim down, but for me this is precisely why CS works so well. It makes Call of Duty look like a bloated, needlessly complicated mess. Granted, that's the opinion of someone who's always struggled with CoD, but now that Counter-Strike is back in my life, I doubt I'll even bother to look at Blops 2.

Martin Gaston, Reviews Editor - Dota 2, PC

Dota 2 screenshot

Hello friends! Here's another 150-odd words about Dota 2 that you can quickly scroll past to see what Dave's currently playing. Been having an odd week this week and I'm ping-ponging between this and League of Legends a bit - namely because Matt doesn't really want to play Dota 2 anymore, and I'm sure he's got his own story to tell about all that. But, well, it's incredibly hard to play both simultaneously when you're not particularly good at either, because the habits you pick up playing one don't work in the other. Which means I've ended up worse at both games, apart from one round where I absolutely destroyed the opposition as Lich. But, yes, I'm getting worse at Dota 2 after 80 hours played. Thanks, Matt!

Also, it's my birthday today. I'm 26, so I'm basically dead.

David Scammell, Staff Writer - Sleeping Dogs, Xbox 360

Sleeping Dogs screenshot

Whoever said that video games can't be entertaining and educational needs to play Sleeping Dogs. I've been taught more Cantonese cuss words this week than I have in 26 years, learned that drinking fizzy pop makes you stronger, and realised that getting a girl into bed is as simple as taking her to a Judo class. So, if you see a bloke wandering around Croydon with a girl on his arm swigging back Irn Bru and yelling Chinese profanities, it might be me. Although knowing Croydon, that won't exactly be an unusual sight...

Nevertheless, I'm 10 hours into Sleeping Dogs and, though I haven't yet found any of the titular puppies, I'm enjoying it a lot more than I expected to. As an open world game it does just enough to keep you interested: the combat is superb, the city is interesting, and there are a tonne of things to see and do, including - you got it - snatching up all those collectibles. But there are also things that I greatly dislike about it. Vehicle handling is atrocious, mission design is weak, and - as intentional as it may or may not be - the story is far too clichéd for its own good. The karaoke mini-game, too, is a rotten cherry on an otherwise fairly scrummy cake.

As a side note, have any of you struggled to get a hold of a copy of Sleeping Dogs? After trawling Croydon high street and a selection of shops and supermarkets across parts of Greater London, almost every retailer I've found seems to be sold out of United Front Games' kung-fu open worlder. That's great news for Square, of course, but a worrying indication, perhaps, that retailers and/or the publisher were cautious of the IP's potential.

Matthew Nellis, Video Producer - Ghost Recon Online, PC

Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Online screenshot

So as mentioned on this week's podcast I've been dipping my toes into the free to play world of Ghost Recon Online. It's a satisfying experience so far and I've yet to feel hampered by the progression system which is what usually happens in these free to play ventures. I'm currently rocking as a level 8 assault class and have gained enough in-game credits to purchase a new rifle, body armour and keep myself with a plentiful supply of HE grenades (that's right, 'nades are classed as consumables and so have to be purchased before every game). Now I'm not sure if I'm super good at this game or if everyone else is super bad, but I'm regularly getting high kill/death ratios and being awarded 'Best Assault' at the end of the round. I think I might just have found my calling. See you on the pro circuit.

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User Comments

MrGloomy's Avatar


Been playing 3 games in near-random cycles depending on my mood and how much time I have left before I feel like passing out due to doing some major crunch at work.

Sleeping Dogs:
Great game, really is. It has a great atmosphere and everything seems to gel together really well. Well done SquareEnix and well done United Front Games.

Darksiders 2:
Oh boy, what a beautiful game. Just like DS1, but bigger, better and it has LOOT! For lovers of Zelda, God of War, Soul Reaver, this and it predecessor fill the gap for those type of games.

(Said in a very quiet voice)...Mass Effect 3 multiplayer...still:
Yes, I'm still playing the multiplayer. Thanks to my brother also being hooked on it too (all the way in Australia), I've been sucked in again and still have a whole bunch of fun. Gold difficulty is now easy for me and Platinum is manageable. Getting over a 380,000 score on gold never felt so good.
Posted 12:06 on 28 August 2012
Wido's Avatar


Sleeping Dogs - Finished
Counter Strike Global Offensive
Darksiders II
Modern Warfare 3
Transformers Fall of Cybertron

Odd go on Burnout Paradise.
Posted 13:19 on 27 August 2012
dav2612's Avatar


On the PS3 I finished Rage. With Sleeping Dogs on its way I didn't really want to start anything new so dabbled in a bit of Outland, Sonic 2 and Motorstorm Apocalypse.

On the Vita I am still focussing on Everybody's Golf and I'd be decent at this if only I could putt.

The iPod hasn't had much attention in the last week but managed a little Broken Sword and some Jetpack Joyride.
Posted 09:43 on 27 August 2012
dudester's Avatar


I loved the bounty hunter story even if my ending didn't make total sense.

This week I've barely had time to play anything but this week I should have a flashy new pc so can play some of the steam stuff I have collected.

I did also buy knights of the old republic 2, I know its supposed to be a bit of a mess but I just wanted to play it again.
Posted 20:41 on 26 August 2012
Ghost5's Avatar


New Super Mario Bros. 2 and Star Wars The Old Republic.

Finished off the Bounty Hunter story on SWTOR making that 3 stories complete.

I think I'll finish the Trooper next :P
Posted 20:24 on 26 August 2012
Endless's Avatar


I so want to be playing Guild Wars 2, but I dont have the funds atm and as I starta new job on Tuesday, it's probably a good thing lol.

It's good to hear someone I know is having a blast with it though, especially when that someone(FM) is an absolute RPG/MMO junkie that pulls no punches ;)
Posted 20:10 on 26 August 2012
dazzadavie's Avatar


I tried some Blur at work which went well. Was enjoying more than I remembered. I then played it at home for more than 50mins and then I remembered just how boring it was on your own.
Did get a little Battlefield 3 in at the start of the week. Entered a game that was nearing the end(rush mode with 100% tickets) and ended on 10-1. There I was beaming with confidence only to keep getting my ass handed to me on a plate every gamer after.
Posted 17:10 on 26 August 2012


Nothing on consoles as I'm away from home. But it has given me time to play through New Super Mario Bros 2 on 3DS and a few games on the Vita, as well as some iOS stuff I had queued up.

Will probably see what my Netbook can handle from my Steam collection (Atom N450 and 1024x600 screen, so not much) next.
Posted 16:38 on 26 August 2012
MJTH's Avatar


I've been playing Team Fortress 2, mainly the new Man Vs Machine game mode. I've never really tried TF2 before this week. The community for this game is so good at it that I've felt a bit to intimated to try it till now. I like a good wave based mode. MvM is probably one of the better one that I've played. A full upgrade systems and being able to restart specific waves means it feels more fleshed out then the average horde mode. At times it feel more like a good tower defence then a horde mode.
Posted 15:07 on 26 August 2012
FantasyMeister's Avatar


Just 3 games for me this week:

Sleeping Dogs - thought it was starting to get a bit 'samey' i.e. do a race, hack a camera, do a favor, do a mission, repeat, and even some of the missions are straight out of GTA IV. But then I started attacking some of Wido's race times on the Social Hub and got into the Mission Replay feature which added a nice extra layer - a bit like discovering Arcade Mode in COD4 for the first time except more rewarding as you still level up in replays.

Full House Poker - I use a straightforward mathematical betting style and can't seem to lose. Won three tournaments on the trot on Friday night despite trying desperately to lose the third one so I could leave the game because the next game had just finished installing.

Guild Wars 2 - brings a lot of 'new' to the table in MMORPGs:

- The World Map is a work of art, the fog of war being deft paintwork on an oil canvas from a very talented artist;
- No annoying trips to storage, just select 'deposit' from the options menu in your inventory;
- Each zone has an 'effective level', so if you're level 80 you've still got all your skills and perks but if you enter a level 4 zone you get capped down to level 4 to prevent you destroying everything en masse to annoy newbies;
- Zero quests, just tasks that activate as you near them which you can choose to pursue or not;
- Daily/Monthly/Career Achievements panel which can be contributed to by all characters;
- Excellent fast-travel system to get anywhere in the world you've been before within seconds;
- Interesting character storylines - think Star Wars: The Old Republic, but not as good imho, Bioware are hard to beat when it comes to delivering narrative, but it's still a slightly different approach to most MMOs;
- Incentives for Exploring are brilliant - Points of Interest, Views, Scouts, Teleports, Task Hubs and Skill Point areas are all dotted around and well-worth discovering;
- Gameplay - very run and gun, very action-oriented, cast spells on the hoof and fire guns whilst dodging attacks, a lot of design work has gone on here;
- Free - and if this doesn't take a massive chunk out of World of Warcraft's subscription numbers nothing else will. But I think it will do, I expect 2-3 million to switch by the end of 2012 (Pachter impression there), more as word gets out.
Posted 13:00 on 26 August 2012
Clockpunk's Avatar


I too have had my love of Counter Strike: GO rekindled - very addictive, where you think 'just one more map I can end tonight with a good round'... and then inevitable get killed by a headshot having done no damage at all... :p But that's all part of the fun. More maps are needed, though.

I finally finished The Amazing Spider-Man, and was disappointed... I could have played a whole lot more of it. The few gameplay flaws aside, it was a fantastic game, with a good deal of exploration. Here's hoping for some single player DLC, or at least the Stan Lee DLC which scatters another 100 comic pages to find around the city.

I bought Don't Starve yesterday, which as I mentioned on the Indie game thread I made, reminds me so very much of Survival Kids, even though it isn't vey much like that title at all. Exploration, survival, strange but beautiful aesthetics (very much akin to Edward Gorey)... it's a beta buy-in, so looking forward to watching this title grow.

As ever Junk Jack n the iOS is providing bite size snippets of treasure hunting (when I really should be getting on with thesis editing ;))

All in all, an enjoyable week of good games. Now... I really need to get back into Sleeping Dogs... haven't touched it since last Friday...! :-/
Posted 12:57 on 26 August 2012


Arkham Asylum - Completed it again and I think I might go for platinum. I have about 90 Riddler challenges to go and the Challenge Rooms are significantly easier tan Arkham City, something I've also been playing this week.

I finished the game on New Game + which was difficult to start with and then in two other places. Brilliant game and I think the more you know about Batman, the better it is. The combat Challenge rooms are a bitch, however,

Diablo 3 - I've started playing again thanks to patch 1.0.4 which brings the paragon system and due to the fact that I seem to be able to pick up decent weapons for significantly cheaper than normal.

MGS4 - Playing again with the trophy patch. Got to Act 3 last night.
Posted 12:11 on 26 August 2012
rbevanx's Avatar


Finished Deadlight on 360 this week to my surprise the game stated it took me two hours when I felt I had played it for at least 3 odd hours in total.
Guess it must have dragged on that much for me as it was full of problems.
Jumping off walls is clumsy and being unable to see if the area you go to is a door, window or a vent is really annoying. The main highlight was the games music which doesn't say much for the game but in all fairness not as bad as Martin said in his review...possibly a 7 from me if I had to give it a score.
Wouldn't mind it if it was 400 ms points but not 1200.

Played a bit of The Walking Dead briefly which I really liked and will play properly sometime but currently busy finishing the new Ghost Recon which I'm half way through now.
It's very Call of Duty but with Splinter Cell elements mixed in and can see why the hardcore Ghost Recon fans hate it so much.
But the game save is also very easily corruptable and to fix the problem I had to delete the hd install??? and I'm now playing the game with a noisy 360.
But as it's really short (took me 2 hours to do 1/4 of the game) I'm gonna try and finish it
Posted 11:54 on 26 August 2012

Game Stats

Release Date: 11/04/2014
Developer: Ubisoft Singapore
Publisher: Ubisoft
Genre: Third-person shooter
Rating: TBC
Site Rank: 2,198 354
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