The Trials Evolution edition with Radio Wammo

Trials Evolution is a downloadable game on Xbox Live Arcade. It’s the sequel to Trials HD, which came out a couple of years ago, and it was one of those games that really bought out the competitive spirit between your XBLA friends. How dare they beat my time by one one hundredth of a second!! I shall avenge my previous high score!

Today with Glenn “Wammo” William, I spoke about Trials Evolution and how much I love it. I do. It’s the most played game in our house over the past week (although, I was off work sick today so gave The Witcher 2 Enhanced Edition some love this afternoon. Oh, how much I hate that kayden swamp monster!)

I’ve just watched the video and apologies: I look worse than I expected. I didn’t really do my hair, I’m unshaven and I just generally look like a slob. I hope my words come out better than my appearance.

Let me know in the comments section what you think of Trials Evolution. Please.

Tuesday usual on a Friday

It’s Friday now but I really should have posted this up on Tuesday as, you know, seeing as that’s the day I chat to Glenn “Wammo” Williams about gaming on Kiwi FM. That’s might slack of me, to be honest. Oh, well, sorry about that.

Anyway, with Glenn we chatted about Kinect Star Wars and, sorry, but I didn’t like it that much. It’s a great idea – let’s pretend we’re real life jedis waving our lightsabres about the place – but unfortunately it’s just a very average game – even my 12-year-old son who likes Star Wars (a bit) didn’t like the game much at all. Most of the issues I had, apart from the lacklustre story and the average visuals, was that Kinect didn’t seem to be able to keep up with all my movements all of the time.

I actually found – maybe subconsciously – that holding something in my hand, such as a TV remote, actually worked better than just holding thin air or a fist in front of Kinect. I still think, and I’ve said this many, many times, that for certain games I still think Kinect needs some sort of peripheral to help with the motion tracking. Just a thought.

Anyway, watch the video and let me know what you think in the comments section. One thing I did notice was that I shouldn’t stretch like I did at the beginning: It made me look like a fat bastard. And I’m not.


So what did exactly did I do in New York?

Well, I walked a lot, ate quite a bit, bought a few things, saw some amazing sights and – the main reason for my visit – attended the Kinect for Kids event, held in a building in NYC’s Hell’s Kitchen district. Today I spoke to Glenn “Wammo” Williams about it today.

You can hear about it here, whether you’re a fan of Microsoft’s Kinect hands-free controller or not.

Go listen. You know you want to.

Game Junkie chats with Radio Wammo: the games are coming edition

Good evening to you all.

On today’s gaming chat on Kiwi FM with the fine chap that is called Glenn “Wammo” Williams we did a bit of a round-up of some of the games coming out over the next few months. It’s going to be hard on many gamers wallets, I can tell you. There are also a lot of games coming out before Christmas with the number 3 in them.

I mentioned games like Assassin’s Creed Revelations, Modern Warfare 3, Battlefield 3, Uncharted 3, Resistance 3, Skyrim and Gears of War 3 but just now realised I forgot to mention one of the games I’m excited about the most: Batman Arkham City. How could I forget that one? Alzheimer’s maybe?

Xbox 360 meet Samsung monitor

Tonight, I hooked up my Xbox 360 to my Samsung 22-inch monitor so I could play Deus Ex Human Revolution while my wife watched the Grey’s Anatomy/Private Practice. I’ve done it before in the past but thought I’d do it more regularly at the moment given how many games are starting to pile up on my computer desk calling out for me to review them.

Everything worked well – I’ve connected the 360 to the monitor using the DVI connection – but I bought the wrong audio connection (one of those Y-cables with a read and white RCA connection on one end then a 3.5mm connection at the other) as I should have got one with two male/one female connection (to connect my speaker connection to) but got one with three male connection. Doh! I’ll look out for another cable on the weekend as I’d like to be able to connect my headphones to my speakers so I can actually have the volume turned up!

It felt good playing games while the girls watched the evening soaps.

Resistance 3: not like Resistance 2 – and that’s a good thing

I’m playing through Resistance 3 (PlayStation 3)  as well and despite only having played a small amount I’m already liking it more than Resistance 2, which to be honest I didn’t really like that much. It plays a lot like Resistance Fall of Man, which I liked a lot, and I like that R3 has bucked the trend of current FPS games and doesn’t have recharging shields for the game’s hero, dishonoured soldier Joe Capelli. Want more health? Find a health pack and use it.

Those of you who have played Resistance 2 will know about Capelli: he was on the same squad as Nathan Hale. If you finished R2 you’ll know what Capelli did and what happened to Hale.

So far I haven’t come across any weapons that haven’t featured in previous Resistance games: the magnum is a personal favourite, especially with its explosive secondary fire, and the auger, which lets you shoot through solid objects without losing the line of sight, is great as well. I’ll play some more this week and give a verdict later on. I hear there is a particularly creepy section involving riding down a dark river on a boat. Creepy …

That’s me for the week. Deus Ex Human Revolution and Resistance 3. Although, Driver San Francisco just arrived today and I hear it’s pretty good. I’d better find some time for that this week as well.

Game Junkie chat with Radio Wammo: the Juice Ex edition

Yes, the game’s called Deus Ex: Human Revolution but I couldn’t help make a little bit of fun out of Glenn “Wammo” Williams’ pronunciation of Deus Ex: it’s OK he hasn’t played any of the games in the series so he’s forgiven!

In today’s gaming segment on the Radio Wammo breakfast on Kiwi FM, we talked about Deus Ex: Human Revolution, which I’m playing through at the moment. I’d so far put about seven hours into it and have hit the game’s first boss fight, the augmented bad guy, Lawrence Barrett, who is proving a bit tougher than I expected: think a man tank who soaks up a lot of bullets and you’ve got Barrett in one.

The thing I like about Deus Ex: Human Revolution is that for the most part you can play it how you want, either stealthily, moving from cover to cover and taking out guards silently, or aggressively, using ranged weapons and your cybernetic augments to inflict as much hurt on foes as possible. Sometimes, you have to do a bit of both.

I’m liking Deus Ex Human Revolution, liking it a lot, and if you get the chance check it out. Check out the video, too.

You know you want to.

Game Junkie chews the fat with Radio Wammo: the snow edition

Yes, that’s right. The snow edition. For those of you who don’t know, I’m in Christchurch (in New Zealand) and it’s snowing here – has since yesterday. And it’s pretty deep, too. Deep enough to build snowmen, have snowball fights, build igloos (if you wanted to build an igloo, of course).

Any, enough about snow (I’ve definitely had enough of it), today the embargo on the Gears of War 3 hands-on that I had a couple of weeks ago lifted so I’ve chatted about it with Glenn “Wammo” Williams already today. He had a play of the game’s first Act as well so he gave his impressions as well.

I noticed at the end of the segment that my hair has that “I’ve just got up” look about it, although I’d been up for a whole hour or so. I hope it doesn’t distract you too much.

Later on today I’ll put a more in-depth write-up of my preview which appeared in hardcopy and online this morning. Keep an eye out for it later. I promise.


The Chewsday usual: Game Junkie chews the fat with Radio Wammo

It’s Tuesday, so you know what that means? If you guessed Taco Tuesday, wrong (although I’m sure it’s Taco Tuesday somewhere in the world) – it’s actually the day that I chat games and the games industry with Glenn “Wammo” Williams on his Kiwi FM breakfast slot.

This morning we chatted about the state of Nintendo at the moment, given that from August 12, the company is dropping the price of its barely born 3DS handheld console from $450 to $343. That’s more than $100. Nintendo must be hurting at the moment.

We also surmised – and probably rightly so – that dedicated handhelds like the 3DS  are feeling the pressure from the smartphone/mobile games market, especially given the low price point of many mobile games.

As usual, listen to the podcast, ponder what’s said and if you’re so inclined, leave a comment. Not many people know this but I read every comment that I get. I don’t have staff to read them. I read them personally. Sometimes I even reply to them (actually, I reply to all comments).

So, yeah, comment!

Game Junkie chews the fat with Glenn “Wammo” Williams

Yesterday, during my radio slot with Glenn “Wammo” Williams we discussed those games that were absolute beauties that every gamer should play  – but sadly, probably hasn’t, meaning not enough people played them to make them a real commercial success. Great games, with lots of innovation, but just didn’t find favour.

You probably know some of the games I mentioned: Psychonauts, Child of Eden, Shadows of the Damned, Enslaved: Odyssey to the West – all games that have received critical acclaim from journalists but just didn’t sell that well – and I’m perplexed about that.  Perhaps it’s through a lack of marketing on the part of the publisher or maybe the gaming writers really didn’t know what they were talking about. I find it unfathomable that games like Duke Nukem Forever sell better than games like Child of Eden and Shadows of the Damned in the United States – but then, realistically does that come as any surprise to anyone?

I’d be interested to hear from anyone on games they think every gamer should play – but probably hasn’t! Give us your list of games we all must play at least once!

Gamewise, I’ve been playing a few games lately. I’m making my way through American McGee’s Alice: Madness Returns, and you know what? I’m actually enjoying the whackiness of it. You’ll find teapots with legs that shoot fireballs, gooey slug-like things, cages full of ducks (or are they dodos?), and all sorts of crazy goings on. It’s a mix of platforming and combat, with my favourite weapon so far the pepper grinder, which is used to not only shoot enemies but “pepper” flying pig snouts. See what I mean about it being whacky?

I’m also playing a wee bit of Child of Eden, the psychedelic “shooter” from Rez creator Tetsuya Mizuguchi. It’s a Kinect game – one of the very few good ones around. If you’ve got the chance to play it, give it a whirl. I’m also playing Transformers: Dark of the Moon and Cars 2, both games based on movies. They’re both pretty average – the Transformers one especially.


The Tuesday usual: Game Junkie chews the fat with Radio Wammo

Apologies for the infrequency of posts over the past week but I’ve only just managed to get my internet connection working properly after a week of “on again, off again” broadband.

Long story short but it seems that, somehow, my router’s VPI and VCI settings had changed to the wrong ones, meaning that my username and password wasn’t authenticating with my ISP. It seems sorted now, so fingers crossed. Hopefully it means that I can join in the Well Played podcast with some of my fellow (Auckland) game journos this Sunday.

Today, being Tuesday, is Kiwi FM day where I discuss all things gaming with announcer extraordinaire Glenn “Wammo” Williams. We chatted about why video games based on movies are usually so terrible today, why they are so hit and miss.

I said it’s because development companies have so little time to actually complete the game that it’s usually just a rushed mess released to coincide with a blockbuster movie release. Case in point was the game based on the first Transformers movie, Terminator Salvation and Enter Matrix, the game based on the Matrix movies. Those games were pretty bad.

We both agreed that probably the best game based on a movie – and it was loosely based on a movie – was Westwood’s Blade Runner, a four-CD game that came out in 1997 but still plays well today, even if the graphics look a little pants at times. I loved that game. I still do. It captured the feel of the movie so wonderfully (they need to do a remake using modern technology. I’d buy it day one).

Wammo said he loved the old Commodore 64 game Days of Thunder, based on the Tom Cruise movie of the same name. I asked if that meant he was a closet Tom Cruise fan – he laughed and muttered something. You’ll hear it on the video. I think he said he’s a great fan of Tom Cruise.

It’s a rubbish day outside, so get a warm drink, rug up and have a watch. As always, please, please, please leave some feedback if you like what you see or don’t  (I sound desperate don’t I?).

The Tuesday usual: Game Junkie chews the fat with Radio Wammo

It’s  chewsday   Tuesday, so we all know what that means: it’s the weekly chat with Glenn “Wammo” Williams on Kiwi FM. Don’t tell me you didn’t remember?

Today, we sort of freestyled it: instead of a review we talked about the (Wammo’s words) “anti violent video game law smacked down in California” by the US Supreme Court yesterday, and some of the games appearing on the Winter of Arcade (Summer of Arcade in the US).

I lost the plot slightly in the second part, where we talk about games coming up in the Winter of Arcade, after my computer mouse dropped from my desk and I’m too embarrassed (and polite) to pick it up – despite Wammo telling me it was OK if I did afterwards. Some of the arcade games, such as Fruit Ninja Kinect, From Dust (which appears to be a god-game) and Bastion, look pretty good. Off topic, but I’m going to download Trenched tonight and give that a whirl (and the Uncharted 3 beta client tomorrow morning)

Enjoy and let me know what you think and what topics you liked discussed in future.