The games we've been playing this week.
Tom Orry, Editor - Captain America, Xbox 360 and PS3
I like this game. There, I've said it. While Metacritic disagrees with my score, I enjoyed SEGA and Next Level Games' Captain America game far more than I expected to. What I wasn't a big fan of was the 3D. It just so happens that this is the first 3D game I've played on the fancy new office TV, and to be honest it was a disappointing experience. There was little depth to the scenes and I quickly returned to the standard viewing mode. Still, that doesn't hurt the overall fun I had with the game. I wouldn't recommend you go out and hand over £40 to give this a whirl, but when it's inevitably significantly cheaper you too might find a game that shatters your expectations. Except now I've probably raised your expectations so high the game itself won't be able to come close to meeting them.
Neon Kelly, Deputy Editor - Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D, 3DS
Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D reminds me of a cat that's lost a leg after a run-in with a car: it doesn't have everything it ought to, and past trauma seems to have left it with behavioural issues, but somehow you're still glad it's around. I can forgive the lack of content and the occasional spat of jerky animation, because when all's said and done it's still a surprisingly addictive game. The lack of online leaderboards is beyond a shadow of a doubt the biggest failing, but it says a lot that I still care about beating my own times and scores.
For me it's arguably more annoying that I can only ever play for a couple of hours at a time, thanks to the pathetic battery life of the 3DS. The latter really is the worst thing about the console; even if the line-up improves and gives us the games we want, we'll never be able to play them for a decent length of time. Well, not on the move, anyway - and isn't that the point of a handheld?
Martin Gaston, Previews Editor - Demon's Souls, PS3
Demon's Souls is certainly a technically complex game, but I don't think it's actually as hard as its reputation makes it out to be. I think the journalists over-egged that one a bit - and, yes, I'm certainly as much to blame as anybody.
Many people mention that if you die you're forced back to the start of a level, for instance. That's true, but working through a stage generally unlocks certain routes and paths that dramatically shorten the travelling time. It's annoying but not a disaster.
I mean, sure, there will be times when you get completely screwed, stabbed in the back, or just fall down a gaping hole. But, really, the difficulty comes more from learning the game's unique set of mechanics and overcoming them which, once you get there, really does feel amazing.
I don't think it helps that the first two levels are some of the hardest in the entire game, however.
Emily Gera, Staff Writer - Simon the Sorcerer, PC
The other day someone on my Twitter feed was whinging about the pointlessness of Simon the Sorcerer so like any normal person I dusted it off and played it for five consecutive evenings to double check. Don't worry, nostalgia fans, it turns out the guy's an idiot. I still consider Simon fairly untouchable. Some games suffer from that "You can't go home again" problem that plagues the games we grew up with. Simon is rough around the edges thanks to the baffling game logic of all point-and-clicks from the '90s, sure. But it's achingly funny, incredibly British, and one of the most likeable games you're probably too young for.
Jamin Smith, Staff Writer – SpaceChem, PC
The story I'm about to tell is 100 per cent true. On Saturday night, I played SpaceChem for around three hours and made some good progress. Then I got stuck. Big-time stuck. Four-hours-on-one-puzzle stuck. So – after having sat and played the game for about seven hours straight - I gave up and went to bed. I struggled to get to sleep that night; little chemical symbols flitted about underneath my eyelids as my subconscious still wrestled with the solution. Mr Sandman eventually came, though.
In my dream, I'd conjured up an answer: a truly out-of-the-box solution to the puzzle that involved fusing atoms at exactly the same location that you export them from the reactor (I apologise – this will mean nothing to anybody who hasn't played the game). I woke up shortly after this, logged back into the game, and tried the idea immediately. It worked, and I passed the level. This is the closest to a religious experience I've ever had.
(I've been stuck on a new puzzle for around five hours now. My dreams have yet to offer a solution.)