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Byline: BOB LOW

POOR old Mike. Smacked in Round Eight by Lennox and no longer the baddest man on the planet - more the saddest man on the planet.

You have to feel sorry for him - and Codemasters, who are launching his game on the Xbox next week.

It was launched on other formats last week and this week. Xbox is the last to go - shame, then, that the world's No.1 on PlayStation turns out to be a has-been on the Big Green Cross console.

The ones I really feel sorry for, though, are game gurus Jon Hare and Justin Forrest. In search of realism, they actually got one of the featured pugilists in the game - Audley Harrison - to train them as professional boxers. All that grunt and sweat, just to have their star bite the canvas...

What they made is an innovative little fight game featuring lots of PAIN - Polymorphic And Interpolative Node-mapping. Otherwise known as fancy hype for marking the virtual boxers' faces when thumped. It doesn't have Lennox Lewis, though - Electronic Arts own him.

But while Lennox was making Tyson look like ... well ... Britney Spears, that girl seemed to be getting feisty. She was in the news flexing some muscle over neighbours being able to see her nekkid in her own back garden.

She had better get in more serious training than foot-stamping though, since she is going head-to-head with Tyson when she releases Britney's Dance Beat this week.

Basically, it lets you audition to be a dancer on Britney's tour. Whack the buttons rythmically to Oops, I Did It Again, Hit Me Baby One More Time (Mike's theme tune?) and you win. It has riotous graphics and, naturally, a screaming soundtrack - her new single, Boys, won't be on it, though. Loads of wee Britneys will snap it up, but for those who can't wait, we have some Britney goodies to give away - three PS2 copies of the game, three GBA copies. plus a foot-high digital-Britney cutout, a poster, a duffle bag and a T-shirt with each of them.

Just tell us the title of Britney's new single. Call our hotline on 0901 563 8230 and leave your answer, name, address, daytime telephone number and the game format you prefer. The lines will close at noon on Wednesday June 19.

Calls cost 60p per minute at all times. If you do not pay the phone bill ask permission from the person who does before calling. The winner will be chosen at random from all the assembled correct entries. Usual Daily Record rules apply.



HAVE a close look at the above picture ( I know it's small, but try).

Recognise it? Yes, it is that Beckham free kick against Greece, recreated in this game format as an indication of just what you can do with it.

Rushed out on the back of the World Cup, David Beckham Soccer features hundreds of up-to-date teams and players, a vast array of competitions and game modes and a "train with Beckham" mode, which allows the player to hone their skills.

There are classic matches for you to play, including the chance to relive England's famous qualifying matches. You can also create your own fantastic stadiums for this fantasy football epic which is, otherwise, a neat little addition to the genre. All that's missing, in fact, is a visit from Posh Spice.

How well it will sell in Scotland is another matter ...


A MUCH-LOVED series, the Delta Force lot have been running around various locales topping the locals in first-person shooter style for some time. This latest one has you single handedly stopping a terrorist group from constructing and using a hand-held atomic device.

Yes, I know. Sometimes you wonder if Al Qaeda reads the pre-production plot summaries and says: "What a great idea. Let's do it."

The game takes place over 12 missions and objectives including intense up close and personal battles, hostage rescue and others. You get all the toys, too, from thermal and night-vision goggles to personal radar and hi-tech weaponry.

However, the Delta Force genre is tired and old. Ghost Recon outdid it for graphics and gameplay, Operation Flashpoint blew it away for realism.

Good for a swift adrenalin injection of comic-book fun - but I'd wait for the budget version, which is more like what it's worth.


YOU can't fault games designers for not getting the real gen before they start - the Mike Tyson crew trained as professional boxers and now Jester Interactive steps into reality. Three enthusiastic directors travelled to the Isle of Man to capture footage of the 38 mile-long racing course for their upcoming Isle Of Man TT game - and ended up driving it at 140mph. During the Jubilee bank holiday weekend, they rode the infamous 'Mad Sunday' in order to ensure the final game, out in 2003, conveys the true speed and endurance aspects of this legendary event. And people said it was just a Jester junket

Bored of the Rings

IN the mad scramble to grab some treasure from Lord Of The Rings, game designers have been growling like orcs at each other and determined to produce a blockbuster in time for the release of the second of the movie trilogy.

Vivendi, on the other hand, have got bored of the Rings and gone right back to the start with The Hobbit, a third-person game set in the world of Middle Earth.

In the game, you become wee Bilbo Baggins, the unassuming Hobbit who finds a gang of dwarves and a wizard on his doorstep and ends up owning Middle Earth's most powerful artifact. As you can see, it is a little more cutesy- cartoon than the current planned crop of LOTR games, all of which are sticking to the realism of the movies.

However, this is more Manga than Middle-Earth, where you'll need to jump gaping chasms, climb treacherous mountains, solve mind-bending puzzles and battle hordes of enemies just to survive.

The graphics may be a bit cute, but the rest of it seems to stick to the Tolkien ideal, if not quite the plot. However, you do get to take part in the Battle of the Five Armies, hang out with the likes of Gandalf and take on the mighty dragon, Smaug.

You also get a game within a game - a neat little strategy effort called Stonelords.

Collect and trade all the Stonelords found in Middle Earth and then challenge your friends - or game characters - to matches.

It's quite unique stuff - and you might just be lucky enough to get it for Christmas 2003.

TOP TEN on the Xbox

1. Blood Wake

2. Halo

3. NBA Inside Drive 2002

4. Max Payne

5. Star Wars: Obi Wan

6 Project Gotham Racing

7. Simpsons Road Rage

8 Silent Hill 2

9. Amped:Freestyle Snowboarding

10. Dead Or Alive 3
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Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Jun 14, 2002
Previous Article:Live music; Love with Arthur Lee King Tut's Glasgow, June 4.
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