Neon Kelly, Deputy Editor - DiRT, PC, PS3, Xbox 360
Memo to self: when playing a racing game for the first time, try to ensure it's not whilst taking part in some form of office pissing contest. For reasons I can't completely remember, earlier this week we had an impromptu staff competition on DiRT 3's gymkhana mode. At that point I had yet to take the game for a spin, so this was essentially me losing my DiRT 3 virginity. I won't lie, it was pretty embarrassing - and just to make matters worse, Pearson was filming the whole thing. He's since cut together the entire competition with the manipulative precision of the pranksters who edit The Apprentice. Oh joy.
Martin Gaston, Previews Editor - Call of Duty: Black Ops, Xbox 360, PS3, PC
Back in Black (Ops) this week, I'm afraid. I'm sure somebody will throw a wobbly when I say that, because saying you play a lot of Call of Duty is like admitting you [redacted] and that [redacted] and that you also enjoyed it.
It's been a lot of First Strike and Escalation maps for me, for some reason - the random deity who selects the next map has gone positively barmy for premium content. But it got me thinking, and I think part of the reason the success of any Call of Duty map pack is so assured is because you simply know people are going to be playing them for months after their release.
I went back to Black Ops mostly because of the Call of Duty: Elite announcement. I saw the statistic tracking website in action a couple of weeks ago and I must say it's pretty impressive - I think there's a lot of misinformation about the service floating about, perhaps because a lot of people see that it has premium paid-for features and then ignore what you're actually getting for free.
Jamin Smith, Staff Writer - LA Noire Xbox 360
I did it. It took me about three hours to find the last two cars, but I did it. So, that's all cases, all golden film reels, all landmarks, all street crimes and all 95 God-damn vehicles. 100%. 800G. Bosh.
I'm sorely tempted to go back and five-star the remaining four cases I messed up the first time around, but I don't know if I can be arsed. I replayed one and it wasn't half as entertaining the second time around. I don't feel L.A. Noire is a game built with replayability in mind. If you know who committed the crime, and how the case will pan out, there's little fun to be had in interrogation. Still, I've come this far, and I'd quite like to get all 1000G. We'll see.
Emily Gera, Staff Writer - Mass Effect 2, Xbox 360
Dusted off this old chestnut for about a minute. In between being overcome with pre-E3 panic and running around my house trying to find three different types of cables to pack I somehow haven't been able to fit "loiter around on my couch" into my schedule.
I'm still about halfway through my second playthrough for those of you still keeping score. Ladyparts Shephard is still well hard. Jack is still set to be my main conquest. I've painted my armour neon pink just in case her womanly charms make enemies take it easy on her. Here's a VideoGamer.com tip: It doesn't, although you get an achievement for it. So there you have it, yet even more Mass Effect 2.