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Byline: with Steve Wollaston

HEAVY FIRE: THE CHOSEN FEW (Nintendo 3DS) THE last thing we need is another war-based shooter game.

The industry is saturated with companies trying to cash in on the deserved success of the Call of Duty and Battlefield franchises.

Remember Operation Wolf or Virtua Cop? Well this is similar, enemies roll on and off the screen, pop up and you have to move the cursor to shoot them.

It's like an elaborate shooting range and your instincts and reactions are the most important thing here. Well, almost.

One thing more important would have been ensuring that the game's glitches, poor presentation and repetitiveness were sorted out.

This didn't do it for me, although I can imagine it would have been fun in 1988.

Sadly it isn't well executed enough to pass it off as retro.

THE SMURFS (PS3) I CAN guarantee one thing. The new Smurfs film will be beyond awful, probably as bad as the last one.

I can also guarantee that kids will love it and my youngest daughter will succeed in forcing me to watch it with her.

As with anything that's popular at the cinema there is the inevitable rush to make money out of as many different products as possible, this industry is no different.

The game, Smurfs 2 is a traditional 2D platform adventure that harks back to those original Mario and Sonic titles. It treads a tried and tested path and borrows ideas from both.

I found myself smashing through blocks to access hidden rooms, colecting Smurf berries and it all felt very familiar, though that's not always a bad thing.

It sets its stall out as being very much for kids in the 5-12 age range, that said I didn't hate it. My daughter is seven and thought it was great.

It isn't massively original, but it is well-laid out with superb visuals.

I will be honest and say it was much better than I expected, but I still hope I don't have to watch the film.

THE SERIOUS SAM COLLECTION (Xbox 360) A GREAT big slice of genuine retro shooting magic to end on.

Lumping in the best of Serious Sam into one ultimate package is a great move and if you are after a seriously high-octane adrenaline fuelled gun-fest there isn't a better game.

A cult-following love this series and playing through this makes you realise why.

You could do a lot worse than getting this and causing some carnage.

A trigger-happy treat.


Frivolous fun: The Smurfs and Serious Sam, right

Heavy Fire: The Chosen Few is Call of Duty light
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England)
Date:Jul 28, 2013
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