The game's we've been playing this week.
Tom Orry, Editor - Batman: Arkham City, Xbox 360, PS3
This game is getting really good now, with the sequence I've just played being the definite highlight so far. I'm playing Arkham City in 30-40 minute chunks and I can't remember a night where I haven't been involved in something great, be it a cool boss battle, massive fight or neat little moment where things just clicked. I have no doubt that some of the great stuff goes over my head seeing as I'm not really much of a Batman fan, but there's still plenty of good stuff for comic-book avoiders like me to enjoy. If, like me, you found the opening a little hard to get into, stick with it; the latter stages are well worth persevering for.
Neon Kelly, Deputy Editor - Professor Layton and the Last Spectre, DS
Perhaps I'm just getting old and cynical (read: more cynical), but it seems as if Professor Layton's charm is losing some of its potency. There's still plenty to like about this, his fourth outing on the DS, but the game certainly feels a bit too similar to what we've had before. It still looks and sounds very nice indeed, but the actual puzzles feel largely identical to the ones we've had in the last three games. I've no doubt it'll still notch up decent sales, and if you're a fan of the Professor and Luke you'll probably still find a lot to enjoy. But for Level 5, the real puzzle is how to give this series a new twist. The next game - the 3DS-based Mask of Miracle - is already out in Japan, so come 2012 we'll know what solution they've found.
Martin Gaston, Previews Editor - Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, Xbox 360
I've had a cold for most of this week, so I've been working even less than Call of Duty Elite. I'll be here all week. Still, if you want to know the raw stats: I'm level 36, have a K/D ratio of 1.14 and a 47 per cent win percentage. According to Elite I'll Prestige in two weeks, but I'll be surprised if it happens that quickly.
The real highlight for me, though, has been Spec Ops mode. With the help of a friend I've boshed out about half of these on Veteran now, and honestly some have been absolutely crushing. In a good way: I am fuelled by defeat. The one where you raid the Russian submarine must have taken us about an hour. It was both brilliant and awful.
Emily Gera, Staff Writer – Skyrim, Xbox 360, PS3, and PC
At level 23 and forty hours in I still find the best way to play Skyrim is to wander in a general direction and hope at some point you'll run into something. Not even necessarily dragons so much as NPCs randomly peppered around to give the game that "lived-in quality", which really does make me wonder whether the game could work within an MMO format. As much as I appreciate the "you're the one true hero" slant of Skyrim, somehow I don't think I'd particularly mind sharing the space with countless others. Would it be so different to swap out Lydia for a legitimate, human co-op partner? I'm not so sure.