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The GAMER.

GAME OF THE WEEK Call of Duty: Black Ops Platform: PS3 Genre: Shooter Price: pounds 54.99 ASIN: B0036ORNUC As the bar is raised ever higher with each passing year, so the pressure intensifies on the Call Of Duty franchise to remain at the pinnacle of the first person shooter genre. And Treyarch has done it again, posting a shooter that would be a standalone success if it were only the multiplayer mode that came on the disc, let alone the incredible single player story. Set in the 1960s, and following the fortunes of Black Ops' Alex Mason for the most part, the game produces as refined (and brutal) a shooter as you'll have ever experienced. You won't miss the departed campaign co-op, and you will absolutely love the vehicle missions, atmospheric music and incredible explosions aplenty. All action lovers shouldn't even bother putting this on their Christmas lists -- they need to go and get this now. Rating: 87% Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 2 Platform: PS3 Genre: Fighting Price: pounds 49.99 ASIN: B003N64ZT0 The Naruto Shippuden franchise has a serious following, assuming almost cult status, and with such fandom comes the console challenge of remaining faithful to the anime series. Ultimate Ninja Storm 2 does just that, fully immersing players in the mythical ninja world with new expansive environments, missions, battle systems and gameplay modes. Your daring ninja warriors must strategically recruit the right support characters to ensure victory against your opponents, and building your skills can result in some awesome, explosive Team Special Techniques. Incredible cartoon visuals bring a real vitality to the experience, and even if you''re not that bothered about the back story, it''s still a really engaging fighter with a surprisingly sophisticated battle system. Adventure mode may get a little bogged down at times, but if you just want some pals round to pummel the hell out of each other, Naruto could be right up your street.

Rating: 80% The Sims 3 Platform: Xbox 360 Genre: Simulation Price: pounds 49.99 ASIN: B003JH7ZIG The Sims series has traditionally operated exclusively on PC, providing a rich life-simulating game experience for those of us keen for some virtual escapism when our own lives become a little lacklustre at times. Taking it on to consoles appeared a natural evolution, but there seems to be a spark of something missing here on Xbox 360, which stops The Sims 3 from being the hit we desperately wanted on the system. As you''d expect, you can create Sims with unique personalities, fulfil their desires, and control their lives within a living neighbourhood, while new features make it easier than ever to mess with their lives. By unlocking the ultimate 'Karma Powers'' to unleash on your Sims, you can administer 'getting lucky'' or 'instant beauty'' at the press of a button, but beware the karmic backlash... All in all, if you''re curious about The Sims series, head for a PC first for a deeper, more polished experience. Then hit the Xbox for this slightly pared down, but enjoyable nonetheless, life adventure. Rating: 77% Goldeneye Platform: Wii Genre: Shooter Price: pounds 34.99 ASIN: B003UAT9ZE It''s a brave developer that takes on the legendary Goldeneye game for a remake. It''s still the stuff of legend for those old enough to remember marathon multiplayer sessions with four of you huddled around one TV in split screen mode. But things move on, and with Pierce Brosnan controversially ousted from what really was his Bond film, Daniel Craig brings a more brutal flavour to the 2010 versions, which thankfully turns out to be a fantastic first person shooter in its own right, with just enough nods to its glory days. And it all boils down to gameplay. Goldeneye has one of the best executions of FPS shooter mechanics using the motion-sensing controller, plus there''s the option to play in analogue-style classic controller mode -something for gamers of all generations. And yes, the old split screen is back, alongside today''s customary online gaming options, which will once again bring a kind of multiplayer mayhem to your TV that will warm the cockles on a winter''s evening.

Rating: 88% GAMES CHART All formats, full price 1. Football Manager 2011 2. FIFA 11 3. Fable III 4. Just Dance 2 5. Professor Layton And The Lost Future 6. New Super Mario Bros. Wii 7. Fallout: New Vegas 8. Medal Of Honor 9. Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2 10. The Sims 3 Leisure software charts compiled by Chart Track, (c) ELSPA (UK) Ltd Pro Evolution Soccer 2011 Platform: PSP Genre: Football Price: pounds 29.99 ASIN: B00403MIFI The battle for footballing supremacy always looms large on the next-gen consoles each year, and the PSP also hosts its own soccer showdown between FIFA and Pro Evolution every 12 months -the Carling Cup to the Champions League, if you will. Here, much like its big brother, PES 2011 relies heavily on its 'total freedom'' gameplay system where players have full control over every pass and shot through the addition of a permanent power bar. On the small screen, a few hours with PES 2011 makes you realise that not too much else has changed though, in terms of presentation, licensing and overall reinvigoration of the series. The game engine has certainly freshened up the experience, and there''s no doubt that you''ll score the kind of goals that FIFA could only look at and long for. So what''s the final score this year? Probably a well fought draw.

Rating: 76%
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)
Date:Nov 12, 2010
Words:919
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