The game's we've been playing this week.
Tom Orry, Editor - Portal 2, Xbox 360
I'd taken an extended break from Portal 2 due to work and Dark Souls, but not wanting to punish myself any more I booted up Valve's game one night this week. This game is far and away the most brilliantly designed I've played in a very long time, with the puzzles always seeming unsolvable, only for the solution to become apparent in a eureka moment. I feel I'm nearing the end now, which is both exciting and a little sad. I'm not sure I'll ever get round to playing through the co-op levels, so this will be it. I know Batman: Arkham City has dazzled critics and there are plenty of other triple-A titles still to come before Christmas, but it'll take something very special to beat Portal 2 as my game of the year.
Neon Kelly, Deputy Editor - Dark Souls, PS3, Xbox 360
I've been playing Dark Souls for quite a while now, but up until this week I've not had much truck with the summoning-based side of the game. Admittedly, this is partly down to the fact that I've spent most of my adventures as a walking corpse, but in truth it never really crossed my mind until last weekend. Having clawed my way out of The Depths with a decent stash of humanity, I decided to make myself available for a spot of co-op aid work.
At first, my summon sign went unnoticed. No-one, it would seem, wanted my help with the Gaping Dragon in the sewers, nor with the (intensely annoying) gargoyles on top of the Undead Parish. Then I returned to the narrow grove where the Capra Demon once lived. I plonked down my sign, and was recruited in under a minute.
If you're unfamiliar with the game, the Capra Demon is a cheap, goat-face b*stard. He's not actually that hard if you can survive the first three seconds of the fight, but usually you get snagged by his massive swords, or his accompanying attack dogs. The first time I slew him I yelled in triumph, and I had no qualms about whacking him a second time. Once summoned, I followed my anonymous companion through the fog wall, and immediately came to his aid. Between the two of us, we slew the git in less than half a minute. Then we parted ways, and I returned to my own world - happy in the knowledge that I had helped someone else to conquer the beast who had bested me so many times.
Martin Gaston, Previews Editor - Batman: Arkham City, 360
You could say I'm obsessed, but I like to think of it as dedicated. I've done all of the side missions except for the Riddler, and my progress in Riddler's Revenge is certainly not to be sniffed at - I have three stars in more than half of the missions now, which is just lovely. Right now I have just over 300 Riddler challenges complete, meaning there's about 140 left to do.
I'm at 76 per cent complete. I'm hoping I can get 100 per cent before Battlefield 3 arrives.
Emily Gera, Staff Writer – Alan Wake, Xbox 360
It's a strange feeling when you see two things you love so hard combined into something you hate even harder. I'm restarting Alan Wake after failing to finish it the first time around all thanks to a deep and unwavering apathy for all characters and things featured in it. Even the Twin Peaks-meets-X-Files combo couldn't hook me in originally, but surely with the kind of presence it had on top ten lists last year I've got to just be wrong? So far the wife seems alright. Shame about the face.