Simon Miller, Editor-In-Chief - Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag, Xbox One
In case you don't know, I hate the Assassin's Creed series. Ever since the original entry was released and slapped me in the face with its lies, I've left the franchise behind, telling anyone who would listen it wasn't for me. After plenty of 'oh, but it's changed now' from people in the know, though, I decided to dip my toe in for only the second time.
Unsurprisingly, I still think it's rubbish. Aside from how long everything takes to get going, the entire thing just feels like a horrible slog. Drowning in fetch quests, 'follow this dude' missions, and 'don't let that guy die, otherwise we'll stop the game' follies, I just got the overwhelming sensation that nothing had changed since 2007.
Before you all find where I live and lynch me, I do understand why Desmond and all his friends have become so popular. Ubisoft's tech behind Assassin's Creed is very impressive, and there's an incredible amount of game here all things considered. I just don't like the way it plays, especially the nonsensical climbing that's the equivalent of fighting with a controller.
Combat sucks, too. And any game that forces me to visit what seems like its developer's offices at random intersections is always going to rub me up the wrong way in some fashion.
Tom Orry, Editorial Director - FIFA 14, PS4
This is pretty much all I've been playing for the last week, hopping on for 30 minutes or so when I get the chance in the evening. It's really rather good, and for me a nice step-up over the PS3/Xbox 360 version that came before it.
The flow of the football is smoother, the new camera angle makes the whole thing look great, and the load times are much improved. I'm hoping EA doesn't rest on its laurels for an entire console generation, though, and makes big improvements to the game engine in the next two years. I certainly think PS4 FIFA can be a lot more impressive than it currently is.
David Scammell, Deputy News Editor – FIFA 14, Xbox One
Last weekend my wonderful lady friend discovered how hilarious it would be to use the power of Kinect to swear at the ref, chucking out obscenities in an attempt to get me into trouble. Oh, how amusing it was to see me getting a ticking off on the pitch and to see those disapproving emails roll into my inbox. “Unprofessional outbursts”, the message read, are deemed unacceptable at a “family-friendly venue”, threatening me with dismissal if I were to continue shouting bollocks at my TV.
But what started as a bit of fun and games soon descended into something far more sinister. When I returned to the game later in the week (and despite the joke thankfully having worn thin after receiving my second warning), I was met with a letter informing me of my contract's termination. Six hours into my career as the manager of Manchester United, 'my' unprofessional conduct (despite having been on best behaviour in the most recent matches) had gotten me the sack. And I wasn't even the one to blame.
I discovered later that FIFA's Kinect support can be turned off, but that surely isn't the point. In this instance Kinect functionality worsened the experience, and despite the supposed ability for it to tell different people apart, chose to register cuss words from others in the room. And in a sports game like FIFA where there's naturally going to be a few cries of frustration and jeers between players, it feels like a mechanic built for technology's sake than for any real benefit. Just like Kinect as a whole, then.
Brett Phipps, Staff Writer at Sportra.com - LEGO Marvel Super Heroes, PS4
Working in the games industry, it's safe to assume that I am just a giant child. So every time a new LEGO game rolls around, I'm right on board and more excited to play it than most people.
The game is probably the best in the LEGO series, too. Brilliant script writing, fun gameplay made even better in local multiplayer and fulfils that obsessive need to collect every single in-game item. Fans of the Marvel comics will be pleased to know there are even some of the more obscure characters present, including Howard the Duck and Wizard.
What might surprise you is the game is a challenge. I'm not ashamed to admit I've consulted a YouTube video or two to get me through some sticky situations. Though I don't know how much longer this will be a viable option with all the copyright hoopla.
If you have kids, or like me, are a big kid, I'd recommend grabbing a copy to play this Christmas.