Simon Miller, Editor-in-Chief - Ryse: Son of Rome, Xbox One
By and large it seems most people either hate Ryse, or are just completely nonplussed by it. I get that. As a visual showpiece it's easy to see why some would warm to it, but as a game it doesn't exactly reinvent the wheel. But, for better or worse, I really, really like Ryse. Enough so that I went back to it this week.
I'm well aware it's just one idea repeated over six hours, and that this one idea asks nothing more than to chop people's limbs off. There is a certain sense of satisfaction in learning how the combat mechanic works, and as you unlock more executions it does develop somewhat. Whack the difficulty up a bit, too, and there's a fair challenge awaiting. You even have to think a little about how to tackle each assault.
The hate will continue to fall in Ryse's lap, but I will continue to wave a flag for it. In the corner. By myself. Feeling alone, but warm... And powerful.
Tom Orry, Editorial Director - Football Manager Handheld 2014, iPad
I've been dabbling with this on an off over the last week, and I have mixed feelings. It's fast, which is good for a mobile game, meaning you can progress through seasons at a much faster pace than in the full PC game. It's also nicely designed, so everything you need is usually only one or two screen presses away. The downside to the speed and simplicity is that the game doesn't feel nearly as involving as the PC bigger brother (on normal or simplified Classic mode).
Without the sensation that you're having a direct influence on all aspects of your team's progress, the desire to keep playing simply isn't as strong as it could be. This is something that the upcoming Vita version may well fix, as it's said to offer a version of the PC game's Classic mode, and allow you to transfer saves between the two platforms.
David Scammell, Deputy News Editor - Skylanders: Swap Force, Xbox One
It's the little things in Skylanders that I love the most: the moment when you drop in Thumpback having forgotten that he's still wearing underpants on his head from the last game, the blatant innuendos (made even more amusing by the knowledge that this is inherently a children's game), and the Hipbro that looks a little (a lot) like Simon.
I've said this before, but don't quickly dismiss Skylanders as being a cynical cash grab or just for kids. The colourful worlds and great characters create a universe that will entertain players of all ages, with the next-gen version often reflecting the type of visual experience you'd expect from a CG movie. Granted it's a little more DreamWorks than Pixar, but of the launch titles I've tried so far, Swap Force has the potential to be one of the most enjoyable.
Brett Phipps, Staff Writer at Sportra.com - Ryse: Son of Rome, Xbox One
I remember watching 300 for the very first time in the cinema, and while it is admittedly a "dude-bro" film, I absolutely loved it. The uber-violence and screaming of every utterance of dialogue turned every teenage boy into Spartans for two hours. It was cranked all the way up to 11 from start to end.
I had a similar reaction when I started playing Ryse: Son of Rome. The gore of the executions, the intensity of conversations and the ability to taunt enemies with a bash of my shield are all adrenaline-fuelled thrills.
Yes it's repetitive, and sure I've seen the same enemy every thirty seconds since the campaign's opening fight, but I don't care. I just want to take down barbarians in the most violent way possible, yelling orders at my Kinect in true Spartan fashion (although these soldiers are Romans, I never was very good with history).