VGBlogger Holiday Review Guide

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[Update] Quantum of Solace (PC), World of Goo, Mount & Blade, Tecmo Bowl: Kickoff, Castlevania Judgment, Final Fantasy IV, and KORG DS-10 Synthesizer reviews have been added in this update.

With the holiday shopping season in full swing, I thought it’d be a good idea to round up all of our reviews from this year into one easy-to-access post in lieu of full on gift guides. Putting together those gift guides last year was so time consuming that we didn’t really get a chance to fully review many of the games that were coming out at the time. This year we’re concentrating more on individual reviews instead.

Within this guide are quotes and links to every review we’ve posted this year categorized by platform (note that reviews of multi-platform games are listed under the platform they were reviewed on; catch-up reviews on games that came out last year are not listed). With a month left to go until Christmas, we still have a TON of games in the review pipeline, and as new reviews go up we will be updating this guide accordingly throughout the remainder of the year. Hopefully you find our reviews helpful in deciding which games you should (and should not) add to your X-mas wish list or get for the gaming loved one in your life this holiday.

Nintendo DS:

Space Invaders Extreme: “If multiplayer is a vital component in your gaming lifestyle, you’ll want to get the DS version. Oddly, the DS version features a more robust lineup of multiplayer options. Both versions share local ad hoc two-player, but the DS also provides game sharing, high score uploading and a full online multiplayer mode for going head to head against other Space Invaders fans across the globe. The online play does have some lag and connectivity problems, but when it’s running full speed it’s a blast.” Read the full review for more.

Arkanoid DS: “At times, completing a stage or coming out victorious in a multiplayer match can hinge a little too much on catching a lucky bounce or having the right power-up drop at just the right moment, and that’s basically my lone complaint. Other than that, Arkanoid DS is simple, addictive fun that’s perfect for portable play in every way.” Read the full review for more.

Commando: Steel Disaster: “Commando: Steel Disaster has all the markings of a sleeper hit. It’s certainly not for everyone due to its maddening difficulty – hence my recommendation that you try before you buy – but overall it’s a quality game deserving of far more recognition than it has received thus far.” Read the full review for more.

Star Wars: The Force Unleashed: “Let me get the DS version out of the way with a quick evisceration: do NOT buy this game. Even if you love Star Wars and only have a DS don’t do it – there is a Clone Wars game coming in November and it is bound to be better than this. How do I know? Because this is right there with Flight of the Falcon and the DS version of LEGO Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy as perhaps the worst handheld Star Wars game yet.” Read the full review for more.

The Legend of Kage 2: “With so many games coming out right now and plenty more still on the way before the year lets out, The Legend of Kage 2 is a title I fear will get completely lost in the shuffle. Please don’t let that happen. Perhaps it’s not the most original work of gaming ever made – it’s pretty damn derivative to be honest — but that shouldn’t scare you away. This is one remarkably entertaining ninja sidescroller that deserves circulation in your DS.” Read the full review for more.

Viva Piñata: Pocket Paradise: “Viva Piñata: Pocket Paradise is a gem of a game, definitely one of the more fulfilling experiences to be found on the DS. Young or old, casual or hardcore, this is a game you simply have to play.” Read the full review for more.

Quantum of Solace: “So again, do yourself a favor and avoid Quantum of Solace on the DS at all costs. Some games simply don’t need control gimmicks to be worthwhile on the DS and this game proves it.” Read the full review for more.

Drawn to Life: SpongeBob SquarePants Edition: “The problems that plagued the original – that ultimately having to continually draw meaningless stuff to fill out the world – remains here, but is even worse. The original did a better job of keeping things fresh and interesting, whereas Drawn to Life: SpongeBob SquarePants falls flat after the promising introduction. It is not a terrible game by any stretch – in fact, my kids prefer it to the original based solely on the license. They have been laughing and drawing silly stuff around the familiar setting and generally having a blast.” Read the full review for more.

Mister Slime: “In fact, that pretty much sums up the game – bland and uninspired. This is a shame because when you start playing you can see the potential for a cute, fun and charming experience. It feels like it should have been one of those hidden gems of the year, but after several waves of boredom wash over you it occurs to you that this is just a missed opportunity and a lousy game.” Read the full review for more.

Tecmo Bowl: Kickoff: “Tecmo Bowl: Kickoff is a masterful remake of a classic game and truly delivers everything a football videogame should have. It’s intense and remarkably addictive – I’ve found myself laying in bed playing “just one more game” well into the wee hours of the night almost every day I’ve had it in my possession – and so loaded with customization options that accessibility and replayability are both about as high as they can possibly be. With the most exciting phase of the NFL season now underway, no football gaming enthusiast should be without Tecmo Bowl: Kickoff.” Read the full review for more.

Final Fantasy IV: “Final Fantasy IV DS truly is the definitive version of Square Enix’s most cherished RPG and obviously a game any self-respecting RPG gamer must own. However, one question lingers: “if I already have Final Fantasy IV on another platform do I really need to rush out and buy it again on the DS?” Honestly, that’s a tough question to definitively answer, but for my money I’d have to say yes it is.” Read the full review for more.

KORG DS-10 Synthesizer: “Whether you’re an experienced composer, budding musician, or casual dabbler in the musical arts, KORG DS-10 is an application you should not be without. Play with it just once and I guarantee it’ll become an indispensable asset in your DS library.” Read the full review for more.

Nintendo Wii:

Destroy All Humans! Big Willy Unleashed: “Put bluntly, Destroy All Humans! Big Willy Unleashed sucks a big willy of its own. Hahaha… I’m so hilarious! OK, I know, that really wasn’t funny at all, but that’s the type of stupid joke that’s littered throughout the game and ironically it works as an appropriate one-liner to wrap up this review with. I simply couldn’t resist turning the game’s own lame humor against it. Such a fitting way to put it out of its misery, don’t you think?” Read the full review for more.

Sega Bass Fishing: “Sega Bass Fishing sure won’t win any awards, but to me it’s a perfect showcase for the type of casual, arcade-style gaming the Wii is built for. Simple as it may be, games don’t get a whole lot more entertaining than this.” Read the full review for more.

Super Smash Bros. Brawl: “As crazy as it may sound, to me Brawl isn’t quite worth the must-buy verdict I was fully expecting to give prior to playing it. Unlike most games that I get in review copies for, I bought Brawl on my own, and now that I’m done with the story mode and not too keen on the online play, I don’t see myself playing very much anymore. So in all honesty a rental was probably all I needed.” Read the full review for more.

Mario Kart Wii: “Even with its faults, Mario Kart Wii is definietly a must have title. Mario Kart fans will find the game challenging, yet easy to adapt to while individuals that are intimidated by games should see it strangely inviting with the allure of the Wii Wheel. Additionally, this Mario Kart has more replay value than any previous iteration as the challenge of playing other racers using the Wi-Fi Connect service will keep you coming back for more races long after you’ve mastered the single player game and unlocked everything.” Read the full review for more.

Dragon Quest Swords: The Masked Queen and the Tower of Mirrors: “My affinity for Dragon Quest Swords is quite strong overall. I thoroughly enjoyed my time playing it and found the whole light gun-esque role-playing concept to be a refreshing change for a genre that can get a bit overcomplicated and long-winded for its own good at times. Dragon Quest Swords, aside from a few niggles, is a compelling gaming experience through and through, one that both series fans and newcomers should look at adding to their library. On a console without much role-playing representation, Dragon Quest Swords is the best RPG you’re going to find on the Wii right now.” Read the full review for more.

Wild Earth: African Safari: “But as ugly as the graphics are and as poorly as the extra content is executed, I still had a hard time pulling myself away from playing and enjoying Wild Earth: African Safari. There’s nothing else like it on the Wii right now and I’m always on the lookout for games that have something unique to offer. If you’re an avid Animal Planet watcher and lover of niche games like me, this is a game well worth giving a shot. If you have the choice, though, the PC version is your best bet.” Read the full review for more.

The House of the Dead 2 & 3 Return: “If you’ve never played these games at home before, or couldn’t find them in the arcade when these machines were more prevalent, sinking $20 for these games might not be a bad idea. However if you’re already familiar with House of the Dead 2 and 3, then I would say skipping these titles is the best course of action.” Read the full review for more.

Dream Pinball 3D: “Dream Pinball 3D is an average game of virtual pinball overall. It’s a mixed bag of good and bad, but does at least offer a hefty chunk of content – six tables, four difficulty settings, turn-based multiplayer for up to four players, two control schemes and a variety of camera views – at an affordable $20 price, which is enough to earn it a peek from anyone in the mood for some Wii pinball action.” Read the full review for more.

Lost in Blue: Shipwrecked: “Not much more I can really say about Lost in Blue: Shipwrecked. It’s a lifeless, unintuitive adventure of extreme boredom that doesn’t deserve your time or hard-earned cash, even as a rental. Leave this one stranded on the shelf, folks, and live to play another game.” Read the full review for more.

Ultimate I Spy: “Overall, though, Ultimate I Spy is the quintessential Wii casual game. It’s a great interactive experience for children that is both fun and educational, and is the perfect game for gathering the entire family around the TV to solve the game’s 40 puzzles as a team.” Read the full review for more.

Castlevania Judgment: “Smash Bros. Brawl aside (since it didn’t force crummy motion control schemes on us!), fighting games and the Wii simply don’t belong together — Castlevania Judgment is further proof of this. This game is a permanent stain on the Castlevania legacy and yet another reminder that the series just doesn’t work outside the realm of 2D.” Read the full review for more.

PC:

Strong Bad’s Cool Game for Attractive People Episode 1: Homestar Ruiner: “As this first episode clearly indicates, Strong Bad’s Cool Game for Attractive People, just like the Sam & Max series, proves that classic adventure gaming is far from dead. When thoughtfully scripted and treated with the utmost care, point-and-click adventures can be as satisfying to play as any other type of game. Homestar Ruiner is a prime example of this, and we have Telltale Games to thank once again for keeping this timeless genre alive and kicking. If you’re totally awesome, attractive and up to the task of handling Strong Bad’s style, Homestar Ruiner (and surely the entire SBCG4AP season) is not to be missed.” Read the full review for more.

Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (Mac): “OK, enough negativity – let’s get back to the awesome game that is Call of Duty 4 and the wonderful job Aspyr did bringing it to the Mac. It is pretty simple math here: if you are a FPS fan of any sort, and if you have a Mac that will play this game (need either a Macbook Pro or other recent Mac with discrete graphics), then you owe it to yourself to buy this game. The game itself is excellent, and Aspyr did a fantastic porting job.” Read the full review for more.

Lost Cases of Sherlock Holmes: “Aside from the criticism of inadequate graphical details, the only thing I found in The Lost Cases of Sherlock Holmes was loads of fun: everyone in my family loved it, even my non-gamer wife. It is the sort of simple fun game mechanic that when attached to a solid license and a well played story, combines to produce many hours of addictive fun.” Read the full review for more.

Ford Racing Off Road: “Ford Racing Off Road attempts to lure gamers who like off-road racing, budget games, and are partial to Ford’s vehicles. It is unfortunate that they do little to exploit any of those potential markets, and instead produce a sub-par racing game that is easily dismissed as yet another piece of licensed ’shovelware’ to be avoided.” Read the full review for more.

Brothers In Arms: Hell’s Highway: “Despite my criticism of some of the gameplay elements, I thoroughly enjoyed this game. It took me about ten or so hours, which is definitely enough to escape me criticizing it for being too short. The impact of the story, the well drawn characters and nicely voiced dialogue really do an excellent job of drawing you into the game, and the tactics and action do the rest. It has been years since we all started saying ‘what … ANOTHER WWII shooter?’, yet this game shows that there is always room for excellent games even in over-crowded genres.” Read the full review for more.

Dark Horizon: “Ultimately the weight of the problems – crashing, glitchy audio, lousy AI – bring the game down. But even if the technical problems weren’t there it would be hard to recommend the game for a single reason: it is not very fun. The story isn’t very interesting, the gameplay works but during longer missions you find yourself just wishing they’d end, and overall it is easy to tear yourself away for almost any reason. My advice – don’t even bother starting.” Read the full review for more.

Fallout 3: “I cannot say it is the best game I’ve played this year – it falls behind King’s Bounty, the just released Geneforge 5 (for the Mac only right now, I had the privelege of being on the beta test team), and the recently released NWN2: Storm of Zehir expansion. But it is a really good game, certainly one of the better games I’ve played and one that I wholeheartedly recommend as a ‘must buy’ to all *adult* fans of RPG’s and action / shooter games.” Read the full review for more.

Quantum of Solace: “It is interesting that there were a number of shooter games released late in 2007 that made me say ‘they should have held this until March rather than pitting it against a wide array of superior games’. That is exactly how I feel about Quantum of Solace: it is a decent game that is no shorter than the last two Call of Duty games, it has some interesting gameplay mechanics, and it has some fun multiplayer options. But it is just a solidly average game that would get little to no attention without the James Bond license attached.” Read the full review for more.

World of Goo: “World of Goo is an amazing confluence of simple things done extremely well with excellent results. There is a unified set of elements – graphics, story, music, sounds, gameplay, and goo to hold it all together. Just as Portal wowed everyone last year with simple gameplay that really worked, this year World of Goo is the game to play. Do yourself a favor – if you have a PC, Mac or Wii, go and download this now!” Read the full review for more.

Mount & Blade: “As I said from the start, the target audience for Mount & Blade is rather small, but for that group of gamers it scratches an itch that has been around for years, and does so in a very satisfying way. The game provides hours of fun, and an experience that doesn’t get stale. There is a constant stream of updates and improvements, making every aspect of the game feel fresh.” Read the full review for more.

PS2:

Twisted Metal: Head-On: Extra Twisted Edition: “Whether you’re a Twisted Metal diehard, a car combat fan or simply a gamer in the market for a fine all-around PS2 title, the Extra Twisted Edition is a title that MUST be in your collection, simple as that.” Read the full review for more.

Buzz! The Hollywood Quiz: “As fun as the new rounds can be, because The Hollywood Quiz is limited to a single topic – celebrity culture – it lacks the all-encompassing trivia variety found in The Mega Quiz and is thusly more niche in its appeal. For that reason, I’d really only recommend The Hollywood Quiz in standalone form for those who already own the first game and a set of buzzers. Buzz! newcomers will want to start with the excellent The Mega Quiz first and then think about giving this a try.” Read the full review for more.

PS3:

MLB 08: The Show: “MLB 08: The Show is, quite frankly, one of the best, most in-depth all around sports titles I’ve EVER played. And baseball is one of my least favorite sports, so if you’re a true baseball diehard just imagine how much more you’ll surely love it!” Read the full review for more.

Space Ace Blu-ray: “And that’s ultimately what makes Space Ace so great. If you want to endure the hardships of beating the game on your own – like a true hardcore gamer — you’ll come out in the end with a sense of pride and satisfaction knowing you just finished what has to be one of the hardest games ever created. But at the same time, you can skip the aggravations, relax and simply treat the disc as a movie. It works both ways. Whether you choose to interact or watch, Space Ace is yet another spectacular Blu-ray showcase from Digital Leisure.” Read the full review for more.

Hot Shots Golf: Out of Bounds: “Aside from the meager course lineup, Hot Shots Golf: Out of Bounds is the best golf game I’ve played in years, hands down. Not since the Tiger Woods series was overhauled with the Game Face character editor and all those new modes (which was the 2004 edition if I remember correctly) has there been a golf game so addictively brilliant. Yes, it really is that damn good. Buy it, play it, love it. You’ll be sorry if you don’t.” Read the full review for more.

Gran Turismo 5 Prologue: “But other than these shortcomings, Gran Turismo 5 Prologue is a masterful production. It’s got plenty of content and value to justify the $40 price and is just plain superior to any other racing sim this generation, even if it is “just a demo” like so many critics keep saying.” Read the full review for more.

Turning Point: Fall of Liberty: “For all its promises to not be just another generic WWII FPS, that’s exactly what Turning Point: Fall of Liberty has ultimately turned out to be. Even the multiplayer was half-assed. I mean come on, Deathmatch and Team Deathmatch with four maps and that’s it, what the hell is that all about!?

Unless you simply must have another FPS to play, I’d say save your time and money for more fulfilling games.” Read the full review for more.

Grand Theft Auto IV: “For everything GTA IV gets right, there’s something else it gets wrong. At times I was blown away just driving around the city and taking in the vast, buzzing virtual world Rockstar has created. But when I actually got down and dirty playing through the game, I found it to be nothing more than a lot of dull busy work. As a sandbox playground, GTA IV is a technical marvel and worthy of praise, but as a videogame I want to sit down with, play and feel rewarded for doing so, quite frankly it just doesn’t get the job done. At least not enough to make it worth more than a rental, in my opinion.” Read the full review for more.

Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots: “Metal Gear Solid 4 truly is a game for the ages. It not only cements Hideo Kojima’s legacy as a master storyteller and game designer, but also sets so many benchmarks that console games from here on out can only dream of matching.” Read the full review for more.

Enemy Territory: Quake Wars: “Somewhere deep down there is a great game to be found in Enemy Territory: Quake Wars, last year’s original PC release proves that point quite clearly. But unfortunately the quality of the PC version didn’t translate over to the PS3 and Xbox 360, leaving console gamers with two terribly shoddy ports until hopefully Nerve Software and Underground Development can put a couple of patches together to get the game running properly.” Read the full review for more.

Siren: Blood Curse: “Siren: Blood Curse is a masterful work of survival horror game design and a landmark achievement in episodic gaming, one that deserves the mainstream success that the original Siren never achieved.” Read the full review for more.

Haze: “Haze has ultimately become a victim of its own hype. Because many of its selling-point features weren’t fully realized, it’s easy to jump on the Haze-bashing bandwagon without giving the game an honest chance. You can bash and flame me all you want for saying this, but I honestly see no difference between Haze and the Halo games. I see both as straightforward, no-frills shooters that are heavy on fun but light on depth and innovation. And that’s fine. Not all games need to be timeless epics. Sometimes the simplest gaming pleasures come from the most rudimentary of shoot-em-ups. Trust me, if you block out that critical voice inside your head and just play it for what it is you’ll find that Haze offers a solid FPS experience sure to scratch that itchy trigger finger of yours. ” Read the full review for more.

Soulcalibur IV: “After taking a hiatus from the series after the abomination that was Soulcalibur III, Soulcalibur IV has pulled me right back in where SCII left off. While the single player portion is a bit weaker than other Soulcalibur titles, the shift in focus and added replay value of online multiplayer should be enough to make up for it. Add in the awesome character customization feature that will grow in time with the inclusion of new armor via downloadable content, and you have a fighting game that will be popular probably until the time that Namco pushes out the next version.” Read the full review for more.

Ratchet & Clank Future: Quest for Booty: “About the only thing Quest for Booty is missing is the immense replay value of its full-length predecessors. The game is plenty replayable simply because it’s a great game, but on repeated plays you won’t find any of the hidden gold/platinum bolts or skill points that have always made replaying past games that much more enticing. But ultimately this is a minor omission. Fifteen bucks for four hours of high-quality storytelling and gameplay is a deal too sweet to pass up.” Read the full review for more.

Bionic Commando Rearmed: “Bionic Commando Rearmed is the ultimate video game remake, possibly the best I’ve ever played. Okay, maybe I’m a bit biased in saying that due to my affinity for the NES game, but come on, even if you weren’t a fan of the original you’d have to admit that the care and attention to detail that went into this title is simply out of this world. Capcom and GRIN clearly put their heart and soul into Rearmed. This is their baby and you can literally feel their love and passion for it with every second you play.” Read the full review for more.

Buzz! Quiz TV: “Something I won’t refuse to do, however, is enjoy Buzz! Quiz TV, because it really is just that fun and addictive. Trivia gaming simply doesn’t get any better than this, folks.” Read the full review for more.

Mega Man 9: “Fortunately this is a downloadable title, so you readers out there don’t have to take our words for it as there is a demo you can try out prior to purchasing it. However, since you can’t actually rent this title, that leaves us with only two options, and if you’re considering Mega Man 9 for the PS3 or Wii I say make the $10 investment and have some retro NES-style fun. While it has a few flaws, reliving part of your youth while guiding Mega Man on a brand new 8-bit adventure is well worth the cost.” Read the full review for more.

LEGO Batman: The Videogame: “As a single-player game, LEGO Batman isn’t worth your time or money due to the faulty AI. If you have a friend to play with, though, this is a game you should be eager to play, especially if you’ve been a fan of past LEGO titles. And if you’re a parent, LEGO Batman is the perfect entry-level-type game you can buddy up and play with your kids, working together for hours of fun solving neat puzzles and savoring the infectiously charming LEGO humor and presentation.” Read the full review for more.

Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Storm: “If you’re a Naruto fan in any way, Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Storm is a game you’ll be proud to have in your collection, no doubt about it. It’s authentic to the anime in every way — even including both English and Japanese dialogue tracks — and with so many collectibles and such a high quality visual design it’s the ultimate fan service type of experience. But in stepping back and just looking at the game as a fighter/action-adventure, it’s just a little too light on depth and staying power to demand a purchase, in my opinion.” Read the full review for more.

Wipeout HD: “Wipeout HD achieves the harmonious blend of speed, style, controllability and depth that all racing games strive for but few are ever actually able to pull off. It really is Wipeout to the extreme. Buy this game right now!” Read the full review for more.

Prince of Persia Classic: “Whether you played the original game or not, Prince of Persia Classic is a must-have addition to your downloadable game library, be it the new PS3 version or last year’s XBLA release.” Read the full review for more.

Far Cry 2: “Far Cry 2 may not have met its full potential, but nonetheless it is a heart-pounding, sweaty-palmed action game right up there with the year’s top shooters.” Read the full review for more.

PSP:

Pursuit Force: Extreme Justice: “As much of an improvement and as good fun as it is, however, Pursuit Force: Extreme Justice is just like a typical blockbuster summer action flick. You go see it, enjoy the flashy effects and crazy action for a couple hours, then leave the theater entertained but not really prone to go back and watch the film again. Same thing with Extreme Justice. You play through the campaign, take in the impressive presentation and savor the vehicle-hopping, car-chasing, gang-busting gameplay with an ear-to-ear grin on your face for the few hours that it lasts. But then once it’s over, it’s over, and you won’t probably won’t look at it again.” Read the full review for more.

God of War: Chains of Olympus: “I really can’t praise or recommend Chains of Olympus any more than that, and quite frankly I shouldn’t have to. This is the best PSP game money can buy, and if you don’t add it to your collection may the gaming gods have mercy on your soul.” Read the full review for more.

Space Invaders Extreme: “While the PSP version doesn’t have the online play, the presentation definitely comes out on top with crisper pixels, flashier effects and higher-end audio quality, so if those elements are more important to you go with the PSP.” Read the full review for more.

Yggdra Union: “Whether or not it’s worth getting all over again if you already own the GBA version is something I simply cannot tell you, I just know that on the PSP Yggdra Union is an instant classic.” Read the full review for more.

Secret Agent Clank: “I adore the Ratchet & Clank franchise and in general had a blast with Secret Agent Clank. But as a whole this game doesn’t quite live up to the series’ sky-high standards. It’s a thoroughly enjoyable romp while it lasts, one any PSP owner would do well to play through, but once it’s over you probably won’t feel the draw to ever play it again.” Read the full review for more.

Star Wars: The Force Unleashed: “The Force Unleashed delivers the excitement … but fails to back it up with a particularly compelling game. It is not a terrible game by any stretch – there is a reasonable story, cool areas to explore, exciting combat, stirring and familiar music, and some nice extras for the PSP. But after that first five minutes it never rises above the level of ‘mediocre’, so that by the time I had completed my second run and some time in the added content I was satisfied to put the game in its’ case and into storage – and for me with a Star Wars game that is a very rare occurrence.” Read the full review for more.

Valhalla Knights 2: “But in all seriousness, Valhalla Knights 2 really is just a bad game. Bright spots do exist, such as the deep character customization, richly detailed 3D graphics and real-time battle system that I at least found to be moderately enjoyable at times, but just like before a lacking story, ass-backwards quest system, and tedious world navigation cripple any chance the game has to succeed.” Read the full review for more.

Buzz! Master Quiz: “My suggestion for Buzz! Master Quiz is to rent it and give it a run for a few days and then happily return it to the rental site. As Matt said in his review of the PS3 version “You can play by yourself as well and have decent fun, but in no way is this meant to be a solo affair.” I couldn’t agree more – and unfortunately the focus of the PSP version is the solo affair.” Read the full review for more.

Xbox 360:

Culdcept Saga: “Forget fancy mapping techniques for a minute, please – It’s truly all about the gameplay, and Culdcept SAGA absolutely delivers the goods. Whether you’re new to this type of game or an old hand at card battling looking for something to keep you busy for quite some time, you’ll definitely get more than your money’s worth.” Read the full review for more.

NFL Tour: “Wow, just when EA was getting back on track with its sports titles this generation, it goes and puts out a steaming pile of athletic gaming poo like NFL Tour. Everything that was once so great about the NFL Street series has been completely stripped away and dumbed down to reach a more casual audience, which frankly makes no sense given that NFL Street was already an arcade-style football series meant for the non-simulation crowd to begin with. It didn’t need any simplifying!” Read the full review for more.

Rocketmen: Axis of Evil: “Do top-down arcade shooters like Smash TV and Robotron get your mojo rising? If so, do yourself a favor and go give Capcom’s new Xbox Live Arcade/PlayStation Network title Rocketmen: Axis of Evil a try. It may not be in the same league as the aforementioned gaming classics, but it’s still a reasonably fun shoot ‘em up while it lasts.” Read the full review for more.

Frontlines: Fuel of War: “Even with a few glaring weaknesses in its multiplayer mode, I can’t recommend Frontlines: Fuel of War enough. Its strong solo campaign and sublime shooting model far outweigh any of the negatives, and the “Frontlines” gameplay system is interesting enough to engage you with the online play for at least a short time. Overall this is one of my favorite games of 2008 so far.” Read the full review for more.

Sega Superstars Tennis: “Sega Superstars Tennis, much like the Smash Bros. series, is every bit as much about nostalgic fan service as it is fun gameplay. The thing is, for a game with the words “Sega Superstars” in its title, there are surprisingly few real Sega superstar characters to choose from.” Read the full review for more.

Wolf of the Battlefield: Commando 3: “The only saving grace Commando 3 really has going for it is the provided Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix beta access, well for XBLA users that is. But is maybe an hour’s worth of gameplay and access to a beta test really worth shelling out ten bucks (or 800 Microsoft Points) for? Honestly, I can’t say that it is in this instance unless you are simply the most diehard Street Fighter fan craving early access to SSFIITHDR.” Read the full review for more.

Soulcalibur IV: “Soulcalibur IV is totally worth the purchase. When I first started playing through the solo modes I was about ready to give up and move on to other games after an hour or two, but then as I eased into online competition and began tinkering with the character customization I became hooked, and I haven’t stopped playing since.” Read the full review for more.

Ninja Gaiden II: “That’s right, folks. I hate Ninja Gaiden II on the 360 with a passion. Hardcore Ninja Gaiden purists can flame me all they want for not “learning” how to play the game – the frequent excuse I hear apologists give to bash gamers who don’t like it – but I’m sorry, this game just plain sucks.” Read the full review for more.

Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved 2: “Lack of Live play aside, this truly is among the top handful of XBLA games to date. It’s both ultra addictive and punishingly difficult, and that’s a winning combination for a dual-stick shooter.” Read the full review for more.

Hail to the Chimp: The Presidential Party Game: “Being brutally honest here, Hail to the Chimp is the worst game I’ve played all year so far, and subsequently a supreme personal letdown given how much I had been looking forward to it.” Read the full review for more.

Zoids Assault: “Zoids Assault is a competent strategy-RPG, no ifs, ands or buts about it. But unfortunately it’s just way too short and light on replayability to be worth paying 60 bucks for. Had it been released at more of a budget price of like $40 I’d be more apt to recommend a purchase, but as it stands now I’d say a rental is all that you’ll need with this one.” Read the full review for more.

Brothers In Arms: Hell’s Highway: “With these minor misfires, Brothers in Arms: Hell’s Highway does feel maybe a bit rough around the edges, but all in all it’s an exhilarating FPS experience powered by intense, strategically open-ended gameplay, a rich, pulls-no-punches wartime atmosphere, and a gripping story you’ll be compelled to relive time and time again.” Read the full review for more.

Infinite Undiscovery: “Basically, Infinite Undiscovery is the appetizer course for the RPG feast Square Enix has lined up with The Last Remnant, Star Ocean: The Last Hope and Final Fantasy XII. It’ll stimulate your taste buds just enough to be worth consuming, but it doesn’t have enough meat on its bones to fully satisfy your appetite.” Read the full review for more.

Mega Man 9: “I hate to be so negative about Mega Man 9, as I’m a huge fan of the franchise and was all for the retro throwback style. If I had played the WiiWare or PSN versions I’d probably have a completely different viewpoint here — I’m sure they are fantastic, especially on WiiWare with a classic controller — but I have to review the version I played and unfortunately for me the XBLA version was a train wreck.” Read the full review for more.

Pure: “Racing games in general don’t get much better than this either. A publisher largely known for budget kiddie fodder and licensed TV/movie games, Disney really pulled a rabbit out of its hat with this one, folks. Pure is pure fun. It’s a terrible pun, I know, but it couldn’t be any truer.” Read the full review for more.

Silent Hill: Homecoming: “Silent Hill: Homecoming is my favorite game in the series yet. Call me crazy if you want to, but it really is one hell of a survival-horror experience, easily topping the series’ second and third installments in my book. It may not be the most original work of horror ever produced, but that sure doesn’t hinder it from being deeply compelling and rich with spine-tingling scares.” Read the full review for more.

Golden Axe: Beast Rider: “Amidst the crowd of deep, time-consuming games that have been coming out lately, Golden Axe: Beast Rider is one of those guilty pleasure games to have on hand when you just need a quick pick-me-up of mindless, gory hack-n-slash entertainment. It’s not long, it’s not innovative, it’s not deep, but it is fun and in the end that’s what matters.” Read the full review for more.

Armored Core for Answer: “Armored Core for Answer is Armored Core. New features like co-op play and the Arms Forts are great, but they aren’t significant enough to attract new eyeballs. As a long-time AC fan myself, for Answer is a quality installment in the series and a game that I had a whale of a time playing through, and surely if you’re a fan of mech games you will to. But overall there’s nothing that new to see here and thus very little to get overly enthusiastic about.” Read the full review for more.

Fallout 3: “Fallout 3, though flawed in a lot of ways, is an amazing game, easily a contender for game of the year in my book. You can call it “Oblivion with guns” if you want, but it really is so much more than that. The similarities are definitely there, no one can argue that. But to simply label it “Oblivion with guns” is a cheap, superficial comparison that doesn’t do justice to how good this game is (and how vastly superior it is to Oblivion).” Read the full review for more.

Spider-Man: Web of Shadows: “However, with the game packing such high entertainment value, it’s all the more disappointing that it was released in such an unpolished state. Honestly, how Web of Shadows cleared final QA testing is beyond me. Clearly Activision was in a rush to get this game out in time for the holiday shopping season, but in doing so they rushed out a game that simply wasn’t ready for prime time. The core gameplay fundamentals are in place and really a lot of fun, though, so if you don’t mind putting up with the occasional glitch or ugly frame rate stutter this is a game you will surely enjoy.” Read the full review for more.

About the Author

Matt Litten is the full-time editor and owner of VGBlogger.com. He is responsible for maintaining the day to day operation of the site, editing all staff content before it is published, and contributing regular news, reviews, previews and other articles. Matt landed his first gig in the video game review business writing for the now-defunct website BonusStage.com. After the sad and untimely close of BonusStage, the former staff went on to found VGBlogger.com. After a short stint as US Site Manager for AceGamez, Matt assumed full ownership over VGBlogger, and to this day he is dedicated to making it one of the top video game blogs in all the blogosphere. Matt is a fair-minded reviewer and lover of games of all platforms and types, big or small, hyped or niche, big-budget or indie. But that doesn't mean he will let poor games slide without a good thrashing when necessary!