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Dive into the dark and sinister world of Rapture; Computer Games.

Byline: MARTIN SMITH

BIOSHOCK Xbox 360 - pounds 44.99.

HMMM. One thing immediately springs to mind about three minutes into playing the latest Xbox big-hitter, Bioshock. Don't be foolish enough to believe any of the outrageous hype... because it's much, much better than that.

The plot in a nutshell. Your plane crashes into the ocean and, after finding a bathysphere, you descend into Rapture, a city beneath the sea.

Created as an idyllic world for scientists, artists and industrialists, civil war has torn Rapture apart with the streets now being stalked by evil children and mutant gangs. Then the fun begins...

The environment of the underwater world is equal only to the original Resident Evil in terms of atmospheric tension. High praise indeed.

The well-crafted control system allows gamers to attack with weapons with your right hand and use biologically enhanced "Plasmid" attack powers in your left.

Spending hours trawling through the dark and sinister world of Rapture before even getting the faintest idea of the real plot was probably my favourite part. And the game's alternate endings are worth checking out too.

Graphically brilliant, this game oozes class. However it must be stressed that it's really not suitable for children at all.

But this is a must-have for all adult X360 owners.

*****

MONSTER HUNTER FREEDOM 2

PSP - pounds 29.99.

HOT on the heels of Bioshock comes the release of the eagerly-anticipated follow-up to Monster Hunter.

The original MH was hugely popular in Japan - with one copy of the game being sold for every five PSPs in the country.

Now Monster Hunter Freedom 2 continues the non-stop hunt-or-be-hunted adventure - boasting more content and options than ever before.

You're cast as a monster hunter - surprise - who has to defend a village from all sorts of not-too-friendly monsters.

This is a game for the long term and definitely not something to just pick up and play. Gamers increase their skills, armour and weaponry as they battle their way through the 3D environments. And as an extra bonus friends can also play cooperative battles via wireless.

A decent effort but patience is needed.

*****

PET ALIEN

Nintendo DS - pounds 29.99.

THIS game chronicles a young Earthling named Tommy Cadle, whose life is turned upside down after the arrival of his new alien friends, Gumpers, Dinko, Swanky, Flip and Scruffy.

When Tommy is kidnapped by the evil Robotix, Gumpers and friends have to battle through space using their unique alien agility, brains, brawn and speed to rescue their human friend.

It's the kind of action puzzle game that will appeal to kids, but adults will probably crack most levels pretty quickly. One for the younger gamers out there. *****

CAPTION(S):

ATMOSPHERIC...Bioshock on Xbox 360 is even better than the hype.; POPULAR... Monster Hunter Freedom.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Sep 14, 2007
Words:462
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