Tom Orry, Editor - Saw 2, Xbox 360 and PS3
This is one of those games that you don't want anyone to see you playing. It's not a good game, but it's so grim that it hammers home the stereotype that gamers are bloodthirsty maniacs. Barely five minutes pass between one incident of extreme, brutal torture and the next. One part of Saw 2 struck me as odd, though; while the game goes out of its way to splatter your blood all over the walls, when a bomb goes off your body simply crumples to the floor. Oh, and never put on a jacket that's loaded with shotgun shells.
Neon Kelly, Deputy Editor - Chuck Rock, Amiga
The graphics look like they came from the Stone Age - it's funny how games age over time, isn't it? Still, it was worth getting my dusty old Amiga out of my Mum's attic this week, because it allowed me to remember how much fun these vintage platformers are. Chuck's an overweight, slack-jawed caveman yokel trying to find a girlfriend - so he'd probably fit right into our office. It's pretty challenging, too, so I might have to keep my trusty old Amiga unpacked for another week. Core later went on to design Tomb Raider, and I wish they could have drawn Lara Croft topless too.
Martin Gaston, Staff Writer - Super Meat Boy, XBLA
Curse you Super Meat Boy, right down to your cruel blackened heart. If Super Meat Boy was a person it would probably be the Cat Bin Lady - capable of performing such wicked, twisted acts of manifold depravity simply because it can. Nothing about the later levels of this game are enjoyable. The game is so evil I imagine Team Meat probably got the ghost of Hitler in as a special consultant. These levels are so difficult I'm willing to go on record to say that some of them are simply impossi-- oh, I did it. YES. Man, that was amazing. God, Super Meat Boy is fun isn't it? I feel so good right now. Man, the euphoria hit me like a surfer crashing through the perfect wave. Next level, then. Nothing can bring me down. I've died a few times now. One more try. And another. Oh, go on then, one more. Look, Super Meat Boy, I'm starting to get a little frustrated now...
Emily Gera, Staff Writer - Fable 3, Xbox 360
Man, I haven't done this well on the dating scene since the time in Fable 2 when I whistled continuously at a farmer. I am positively up to my knees in husbands. In fact any time I lose interest in the actual quest line I just make a b-line for the nearest city and begin my own quest to collect as many spouses as I can, like some sort of human-variety of Pokemon. If only Molyneux would devise a way where making the same repeated gesture would make you more likely to pull on a Saturday night in real life. A bit of a shame, to be fair.
Jamin Smith, Staff Writer – The Fight, PS3
When I was younger, I was a keen fighter. At school I once punched a guy so hard he fell over and exploded into gore. I was banned from P.E for the rest of the term, but the Headmaster forgave me because the dude was a bit of a douche. So when PlayStation Move exclusive The Fight turned up at our office it was, naturally, given to me. Thirty minutes of The Fight and my arms became sore and shrivelled - it's very tiring. About a week later and my body looks like that of a prize fighter, though, and I'm fairly sure I could switch to a career in bare-knuckle boxing if I wanted. It's a shame about the game, though - it's absolute bobbins.
Tom Pearson, Video Producer - Castlevania: Lords of Shadow, PS3 and Xbox 360
I've always seen Patrick Stewart as a father figure, so it was like a long-lost father reading me a bedtime story when he started recounting Gabriel Belmont's epic story in Castlevania: Lords of Shadow. The combat's unashamedly a bit God of War, but there are certainly worse games to try and rip off. I'm only about three or four hours in, so I've barely started scratching the surface, but the decent mix of puzzles and combat is more than enough to keep me plugging away. The only problem is that I'm still unsure how to become a Lord of Shadow, and the game does a terrible job of telling you whether or not doing so has its rewards - such as a posh estate in the South-East and enough farmland to keep me in milk and bacon for the rest of my life.
Four of the six entries in this week's VG plays were written by Martin in an attempt to free staff up so he could form a make-shift band for a Rock Band 3 session. Can you guess which two staff members bothered to write their own entry?