The games we've been playing this week.
Tom Orry, Editor - PS Vita
My adventures in Skyrim took a slight backseat this week as the PS Vita took over my evening gaming. As I type this I've only just got hold of some full games, so I've been getting my next-gen handheld fix through a selection of demos. Most impressive are WipEout 2048 and Uncharted: Golden Abyss, although the latter could well suffer from an excess of touch and tilt controls. I also had a surprising amount of fun with the Sony's WarioWare imitator Frobisher Says, which presents a series of quick-fire mini-games - although the way the game says "Frobisher says" at the start of each challenge is by far the most amusing aspect.
I am less impressed with Gravity Rush, which has gained a fair bit of attention due to being from Keiichiro Toyama, the man behind the original Silent Hill and the Siren games. This is nothing like those titles, instead offering some gravity manipulation and some hack 'n' slash-style fighting. Maybe the demo doesn't sell it well, but it was only the comic-book-style cutscenes that left a good impression.
Neon Kelly, Deputy Editor – X-COM: Enemy Unknown (the original one), PC, PS1
This week I was utterly thrilled by the revelation that Firaxis is developing another XCOM game – a turn-based strategy affair to go sit alongside 2K's troubled FPS reboot thing. And when I say "utterly thrilled", I really do mean that I started yelping with delight, expressing in amorphous whoops and gibbers what I could not with real words.
XCOM, man. Or rather, X-COM – as I'm a pedant and a veteran fan, I still insist on using the hyphen. In any case, it's a useful way to distinguish between the old games and the new ones.
The Firaxis reboot is exciting because it seems that the developers understand what made the early games so good – the challenge, the uncertainty, and above all else the spontaneous drama that unfolds as your puny troops risk their lives in desperate battle against foes who are meaner, more accurate, and better equipped. In response, I inevitably loaded up the old game for the umpteenth time. And you know what? The graphics may look like Lego, but it's still gold.
If you're still unfamiliar with the original series, take a gander at this fan-made Let's Play. It's geeky as anything, but it's also pretty funny, and gives a good sense of how the game can get its claws into you.
Emily Gera, Staff Writer - Assassins Creed: Revelations, Xbox 360
Surprise, surprise. I actually took a break from Star Wars: The Old Republic to give Assassin's Creed: Revelations a go. Still quite early on in the playthrough so far but seemingly every other mission functions as a mini-game that tries to make use of a new, bizarre piece of equipment or random genre. That includes guitar playing, hand-gliding, and tower defence. All and all an odd game, and Desmond is looking increasingly like Adam Sandler to me, but it's not totally detestable. You can use that for your next box quote, Ubisoft.