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Lego The Hobbit Review | Traveller's Treasure or Witless Worm?

Author:
Brendan Griffiths
Category:
Reviews
Tags:
3DS Games, Action Games, children's games, Lego The Hobbit, PC games, Platform games, PS Vita games, PS3 games, PS4 games, Wii U games, Xbox 360 games, Xbox One Games

Lego The Hobbit Review | Traveller's Treasure or Witless Worm?

Platform: PS4 (reviewed) | PS3 | Vita | X360 | XO | Wii U |3DS

Developer: Traveller’s Tales

Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive

Yes, this is a review, not an advanced preview for a game which (with any sense) wouldn’t see a release until December when the final Hobbit movie hits cinemas. Instead, this Lego title encompasses the first two films with the third to be added as DLC later this year.

It would take the most upbeat of optimists to suggest that WB will do the right thing and release the add-on (the rest of the game) for free, but my cynical nature tells me to expect something around £15.99 –an oddly specific guess I admit. I also wouldn’t be surprised to see this game re-released complete with the remaining content in December for the same price it is today. So, I guess the only real question left, is how many Lego games do you need in your life? With Lego Marvel and the Lego Movie tie-in released just five and two months ago respectively, you have to wonder why WB didn’t wait.

Lego The Hobbit Review | Traveller's Treasure or Witless Worm?

But here we are, back in Middle Earth for another action-platformer collect em’ up. As with the Lego Lord of the Rings game, there are lines of dialogue and music from the movie giving the game an authentic air. In the Lego LOTR titles, I found this to be an odd match as the straight-faced dialogue was at odds with the characters messing about in the background. But The Hobbit movies have turned out to be lighter affairs and the seriousness and comedy seems to gel together better than I expected. Or maybe it’s because I loved the LOTR movies have been bitterly disappointed with the drawn-out Hobbit ones.

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2014 is The Year Of The Vita

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
Borderlands 2, Freedom Wars, Oreshika: Tainted Bloodlines, PS Vita, PS Vita games, SCEE, Sega, Sony Japan Studio, Soul Sacrifice Delta

2014 is The Year Of The Vita

Sony Japan Confirms Three New Games For Europe

The PlayStation Vita received short shrift last year, especially here in Europe. A tiny handful of big hitters aside, Sony's handheld rarely found its way into our sweaty palms, completely outgunned and outgamed by the 3DS in ascendancy.

But 2014 could well reverse the Vita's fortunes. Over the last few months, Sony and third party partners have been bringing a huge number of fantastic localised titles to British shores, alongside some fantastic indie gems and cross-platform games, culminating in the announcement that three major Japanese releases are also headed West.

More than just a niche proposition, handheld gamers are going to have a lot to love this year - and so many reasons to keep Sony's portable powerhouse to hand.

2014 is The Year Of The Vita

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Persona 4: The Golden only £18.49 at Gameseek on PS Vita

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Atlus, JRPG, PS Vita, PS Vita games

Persona 4: The Golden only £18.49 at Gameseek on PS Vita

Persona 4: The Golden | Gameseek | £18.49
Price ComparisonPersona 4: The Golden Review
Voucher Code: QUIDCO

The PS Vita is a cult connoisseur's paradise, and Persona 4: The Golden is easily one of the best flagship games on the system. If not the best handheld games ever made. Matt awarded this splendid remake with a perfect score, which went above and beyond the incredible original with a full graphical makeover and hours of extra content. For £18.49 (including delivery a £2 saving with the QUIDCO voucher code), it's worth having in your life.

Thanks to cr3ampie @ HUKD, who also found the £17.50 deal last month!

Invizimals: The Alliance Review | A Wild Brian Blessed Appears!

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Reviews
Tags:
Augmented Reality, Games reviews, Novarama, PS Vita, PS Vita games, RPG, SCEE

Invizimals: The Alliance Review | A Wild Brian Blessed Appears!

Platform: PS Vita

Developer: Novarama Technology

Publisher: SCEE

Invizimals wants to be Pokemon with augmented reality, real-time battles and Brian Blessed.

High concept formulas don't get any better than that, do they? Pokemon provides the addictive core of catching, training and battling some cool critters, brought to full 3D life by the Vita's processing power. Augmented Reality uses the cameras to merge the game world with our own, letting players discover creatures in the playground or office and throw down on the bus home. And Brian Blessed is a national treasure with an amazing beard. As such Invizimals: The Alliance ought to be the best game ever made, and at the very worst it's exactly the sort of mainstream family-friendly franchise the Vita needs right now.

And yet Novarama found a way to cock it up. They've over-developed it to within an inch of its life; drowning a strong and simple idea in a hot mess of obnoxious minigames.

Then added insult to injury by forcing us to dig out AR Cards every five seconds.

Invizimals: The Alliance Review | A Wild Brian Blessed Appears!

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Lego Batman 2 £8.86 on Vita at ShopTo

Author:
Brendan Griffiths
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Action Games, Lego Batman 2, Platform games, PS Vita games

Lego Batman 2 £8.86 on Vita at ShopTo

Lego Batman 2 | ShopTo | £8.86 (save £5) | Price Comparison

Lego Batman 2 is one of the best Lego titles out there. Real voices were recorded for the first time in the series allowing Traveller's Tales to deliver a proper story. Turns out they can write some very funny scenes too especially Batman's general distaste for all things Superman. There's something of an open-world feel to the game here as we get to explore a Lego version of Gotham and Metropolis. Adding extra superheroes to play as adds some welcome variety, like being able to fly.

Thanks to theg at HotUkDeals.

Football Manager Classic 2014 Review | Now You Can Take Your Addiction With You

Author:
Matt Gardner
Category:
Reviews
Tags:
Football Manager 2014, Football Manager Classic 2014, Management sims, PS Vita games, Sega, Sports Interactive

Football Manager Classic 2014 Review | Now You Can Take Your Addiction With You

I've never really managed to get on with the mobile versions of Football Manager. Though the UI is streamlined brilliantly for use on small screens, and the options refined to allows for a degree of pick-up-and-play action on the go, it just didn't scratch the compulsive itch I got from the full-fat version on PC. I want the bells and whistles, the ridiculously advanced stats, the analytics that allow me to comb through previous games and then devise new tactics on an individual basis, whipping up other managers and journalists into a media maelstrom with my club at the heart of it all.

Football Manager Classic 2014 doesn't quite do all of that either, taking the Classic mode from the recent instalment of the FM series rather than the absurdly intricate full simulation; but it does come closer than any other portable manager sim before it. And, as it turns out, that's both a blessing, and also a bit of a curse.

Football Manager Classic 2014 Review | Now You Can Take Your Addiction With You

Let's start with the positives, though. Above all else, this is the Football Manager experience that we know and love. The PlayStation Vita port remains phenomenally true to the original game, and that means you're no longer bound to your desk if you want to sink hours and hours into shunting that non-league club you started with towards Champions League glory. Classic might not quite boast the same level of absurd depth as the full simulation, but it's still enormously involved -- we've described it in the past as being a little like a nostalgic jaunt back to the FM titles of several years ago.

Training, tactics, transfers, and the team -- that's what Classic is all about, eschewing some of the more seemingly mundane elements of the managerial lifestyle like attempting to balance the books. The interface is clean and virtually identical to the PC version, and when you're in-match, you're only ever a few finger swipes and pushes away from your regular swathe of options -- whether that's swapping players in and out or barking orders to those already on the pitch.

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Snap up Dragon's Crown on PS Vita for only £19.99 at GAME

Author:
Matt Gardner
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Action RPGs, Beat ‘em ups, Capcom, Dragon's Crown, PS Vita games, RPGs
Snap up Dragon's Crown on PS Vita for only £19.99 at GAME

Dragon's Crown | GAME | £19.99
Price ComparisonReview

We've been waiting for a price drop on Dragon's Crown to take it below the £20 mark as it's been holding its value rather impressively, and now GAME have delivered. We'd go so far as to say that the PS Vita version is probably a bit better than the PS3 equivalent that to the immediacy of the touchscreen and, if you have an original console, that OLED magnificence. Brendan had a blast with this surprisingly deep action RPG, and you should definitely give his review a read.

Thanks to PIMPed at HotUkDeals.

It's savings across for board in the Playstation Store Easter Sale

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Playstation Store, PS Vita games, PS3 games, Sale

It's savings across for board in the Playstation Store Easter Sale

From 9th April until 30th April

While you could spend all those pennies you've saved on buying more chocolate (and I wouldn't blame you, really) Sony have decided to give Playstation 3 and Vita owners a chance to bag a saving or two during the Easter holiday. As always, PS+ subscribers get a little chopped off the top for an extra saving. Notable offers include those for Battlefield 4, the Mass Effect trilogy, Hotline Miami (a cross-buy purchase, which is nice), and the first season of The Walking Dead. Take a gander at the entire list of offers by hitting the jump.

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BROFORCE Hands-On Preview | The Ultimate BRO-Down!

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Features
Tags:
Action Games, Broforce, Bromance, Devolver Digital, Free Lives, PC games, Platformer, PS Vita games, Rezzed 2014

BROFORCE Hands-On Preview | The Ultimate BRO-Down!

BROFORCE is utterly outrageous in all the best ways. This rambunctious sidescoller puts us into the boots of over a dozen legendary action heroes, homages to everything from Judge Dredd and Commando to Men In Back, Machete, Rambo, Robocop, Terminator, the A-Team and Die Hard for starters, then runs us through an orgy of huge guns, massive explosions and gore aplenty in a quest to bring peace to the world through gloriously over-the-top ultraviolence. It's outstanding - and it isn't even finished yet.

Having caught our eye ever since its reveal, we made a beeline for BROFORCE at EGX Rezzed... where it managed to turn two bro-fessional games writers into fist-bumping, whooping, hollering reprobates in only a few short minutes.

Now that it's available on Steam Early Access, it's high time we took a closer look Free Lives' patriotic blast'em up and explain why it's handily one of our most anticipated games of 2014.

BROFORCE Hands-On Preview | The Ultimate BRO-Down!

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Get a 4GB PS Vita memory card, Hotline Miami, Superfrog HD & 8 more indie games for £14.98 at Zavvi [Update]

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Indie Games, PS Vita, PS Vita games

Get a 4GB PS Vita memory card, Hotline Miami, Superfrog HD & 8 more indie games for £14.98 at Zavvi [Update]

PS Vita 4GB memory card + 10 indie games | Zavvi | £14.98 (save £2)

Another fantastic mega pack deal sees the indie games get some loving. £16.99 is a steal for Alien Breed, Thomas Was Alone, Velocity, Men's Room Mayhem, Limbo, Coconut Dodge, Hotline Miami, Total Recoil, Superfrog HD and Roaming Cloud God; a £2 saving for hours of gaming.

UPDATE: £16.99 was a steal, but £14.98 from Zavvi is even better. Thanks to Johnbloggz for the tip!

PS Vita Mega Pack (10 games & 16GB memory card) only £24.85 at ShopTo

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
PS Vita, PS Vita games

PS Vita Mega Pack (10 games & 16GB memory card) only £24.85 at ShopTo

PS Vita Mega Pack | ShopTo | £24.85

If you've just bought a PS Vita and want more games, you can't go far wrong with this ridiculous Mega Pack. For just under £25, you'll get a beefy 16GB memory card, which you can then fill up with downloadable copies of LittleBigPlanet PS Vita, WipEout 2048, MotorStorm RC, Little Deviants, Frobisher Says! (with Fun Pack DLC), Ecolibrium (with Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum game packs), Ratchet and Clank: Size Matters, Lemmings, Hungry Giraffe and The HD Adventures of Rotating Octopus Character.

Bargain. Thanks to goldiminator @ HUKD!

Lego Movie Videogame £16.85 at ShopTo on Vita

Author:
Brendan Griffiths
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Action Games, children's games, Platform games, PS Vita games

Lego Movie Videogame £16.85 at ShopTo on Vita

Lego Movie Videogame | ShopTo | £16.85

The Lego Hobbit game is just around the corner, but if you need your collecting-mania fix before then, why not pick up The Lego Movie Videogame on the Vita for its cheapest price yet? The film has been a huge success in cinemas, so chances are your little ones are going to enjoy the game too. This one's a bit phoned in by Traveller's Tales' standards (it's not like they haven't been doing that for years anyway), so it's probably more for the younger gamer. Well, unless you enjoyed the film too. Either way, ShopTo's deal is the cheapest around and the Vita version is way cheaper than any of the main console formats.

Thanks to theg at HotUkDeals.

Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number Video Preview | Slaughter By The Numbers?

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Features
Tags:
Dennaton Games, Devolver Digital, Gameplay footage, Games previews, Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number, PC games, PS Vita games, PS3 games, PS4 games, Rezzed 2014, Videos

Having fallen in love with Hotline Miami, we naturally made a beeline for Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number at EGX Rezzed 2014. Though still months from release, its latest demo build is still as sleazy, gritty, brutal, horrific, sharp and gleefully enjoyable as ever. Not to mention exceptionally difficult in all the right - wrong? - ways.

But can the sequel deliver the same shock value and surprise of its predecessor? Will we actually ever reach a consensus on what the story, masks and characters represent? Frankly I have no idea yet, but fans of the original will definitely get hooked in for more gut-wrenchingly compelling ultraviolence. You can watch it all in our video playthrough above, accompanied by my vaguely informative wafflings.

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MXGP: The Official Motocross Videogame Review | Ridin' Muddy

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Reviews
Tags:
Games reviews, Milestone, PC games, Plug In Digital, PS Vita games, PS3 games, Racing Games, Simulations, Xbox 360 games

MXGP: The Official Motocross Videogame Review | Ridin' Muddy

Platforms: PC | PS3 (reviewed) | PS Vita | Xbox 360

Developer: Milestone

Publisher: Plug In Digital

Cards on the table: I've never once wanted to own a motorbike. Sure, you can get from A to B extremely quickly in zigzag fashion, but I'd much rather tilt the seat back in my clapped-out 2002 Fiesta, crank up The News Quiz and enjoy the traffic jam. I prefer leather shammies to leather trousers, F1 to MotoGP, headrests to pillions and four wheels to two in real life, all day long.

But real life be damned, because virtual motorbikes are always a blast. From MotoGP simulations to the arcade brilliance of Motocross Madness 2 and even the Trials series, there's nothing quite like leaning into the corners and sticking countless ridiculous landings - all without sweating into a leather outfit and undergoing painful reconstructive surgery.

MXGP: The Official Motocross Videogame Review | Ridin' Muddy

As such, MXGP revs my throttle. Focusing squarely on the mud-churning Motocross side of things, it's a hot mess of ramps and jumps, boasting a scalable simulation model, real riders and addictive career mode. Though decidedly lacking in flair and flash, diehard fans will find a lot to love here.

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BROFORCE BROtally BROdacious VideBRO Preview | BROfessional Journalism!

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Features
Tags:
Action platformer, Bro, Broforce, Free Lives, Games previews, PC, PC games, PS Vita, PS Vita games, PS3, PS3 games, PS4, PS4 games, Rezzed 2014, Videos

BROFORCE BROtally BROdacious VideBRO Preview | BROfessional Journalism!

BROFORCE!

It's all in the name. This cooperative run & gun platformer is utterly outrageous in all the right ways, letting us control awesome homages to classic action movies and throwing us into massively destructible levels in the name of RIDICULOUS ACTION. BROchete? BRO Dredd? Indiana BROnes? Brade? BROdell Walker? The BROminator? They're all there, and more besides, all ready to make stuff explode in the most epic of ways.

As an example, Carl took down a helicopter with a katana. Not unlike a boss.

We'll bring you a more in-depth preview soon, but here's what happened when Carl and I got to grips with BROFORCE at EGX Rezzed. Forget professionalism, because we've got BROfessionalism. Which is just as good, except with 100% more high fives and naked from the waist up.

We won't have to wait four months for The Wolf Among Us: Episode 3

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
iOS games, PC games, PS Vita games, PS3 games, Telltale Games, trailer, Xbox 360 games

We won't have to wait four months for The Wolf Among Us: Episode 3

The lengthy delay between The Wolf Among Us: Episodes 1 and 2 was utterly interminable, but we're delighted to report that the third chapter -- A Crooked Mile -- is nearly upon us. Telltale have released a brand new reveal trailer, along with assurances that we'll be able to play it "very soon" - likely next week if not later this month.

Before you go any further, bear in mind that the video contains major spoilers for Episodes 1 and 2! Don't watch it if you're planning on completing the series as a single complete package in a few months' time.

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Final Fantasy X-2 HD Remaster Review | Beautifully, Brilliantly Bonkers

Author:
Matt Gardner
Category:
Reviews
Tags:
Final Fantasy X-2, Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD Remaster, JRPGs, PS Vita games, RPGs, Square Enix

Final Fantasy X-2 HD Remaster Review | Beautifully, Brilliantly Bonkers

That Final Fantasy X-2 ever existed is frankly fantastic. Back when it emerged on the PS2 as the first true sequel to ever bear the name Final Fantasy, it confused the hell out of people. Picking up two years after the end of its direct predecessor, X-2 can basically be summed up as "What Yuna Did Next", yet it abandoned much of what made FFX a classic and what we ended up with was a strikingly pretty, utterly revamped, female-led, undeniably Japanese, all-singing all-dancing hot mess.

And it was thoroughly entertaining.

The Vita version of Final Fantasy X-2 HD sparkles. It looks absolutely fantastic, and on occasion I had to remind myself that this was made over a decade ago. The main characters look brilliant, the character models approaching current-gen quality at times, though this is offset by NPCs that range from the passable to the downright ugly. The fact that the opening video has been redone in HD, along with all of the other cutscenes, is frankly excellent. There's nothing else to say, really -- FFX-2 HD looks better than quite a few native Vita titles. It's one of the finest HD remasters I've ever witnessed in that respect.

Final Fantasy X-2 HD Remaster Review | Beautifully, Brilliantly Bonkers

Just as important as the changes to the visuals, though, are the lack of changes when it comes to the soundtrack. So much of what makes X-2 such a crazy romp is it's J-Pop soundtrack, and I'm pleased to report that the only thing that seems to have changed is the sound quality. FFX's soundtrack has been noticeably tampered with, and not entirely for the better, but here it seems like guns have most certainly been stuck to, and that'll surely delight long-time fans. Let's face it -- X-2 was always something of a Marmite game, but that was down to the fact that it's one of the most identifiable Final Fantasy title out there, positively oozing with character and personality. It's nice to see that none of that has been lost in the remastering process.

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Fez PS4 / Vita Review | A Bit Old Hat

Author:
Brendan Griffiths
Category:
Reviews
Tags:
Fez, Platform games, PS Vita games, PS3 games, PS4 games, Puzzle games

Fez PS4 / Vita Review | A Bit Old Hat

Platform: PS4 (reviewed) | PS3 | PS Vita (reviewed)

Developer: Polytron and BlitWorks

Publisher: Trapdoor

Despite critical acclaim two years ago when released on XBLA and PC, Fez has taken its time to come to the PlayStation Platforms. Rather than a discount for its tardiness, the asking price of £7.99 gets you a cross-buy copy of the game that you can download to your PS4, PS3 and PS Vita complete with cloud-based cross-save functionality.

For those of you new to the world of Fez, allow me to catch you up. This is a puzzle platformer that opts for an 8-bit retro style. What’s decidedly not retro though (unless you count Echochrome and Crush as retro) is the rotating mechanic adding depth to the 2D platforming. With a tap of a shoulder button, the whole game world rotates 90 degrees. This begins simply enough when you’re just navigating a singular structure, you could even be forgiven for thinking it’s just a gimmick as it’s essentially a traditional flat 2D stage that you push forward with these ‘rotations.’

Fez PS4 / Vita Review | A Bit Old Hat

But then stages start to get more elaborate with extra platforms and multiple floating islands to navigate. Upon rotation, many of these areas see additional platforms moved into position allowing you to reach higher places. Hidden doors leading to new parts of the map are featured on the sides of buildings too.

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Sly Trilogy Collection £21.99 at 365 Games on Vita

Author:
Brendan Griffiths
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Platform games, PS Vita games

Sly Trilogy Collection £21.99 at 365 Games on Vita

Sly Trilogy Collection | 365 Games | £21.99 (pre-order)

If you haven't already picked up the PS3 version of the HD Sly Trilogy, you may want to hold on for the Vita version which is due for release on April 18th and is only about £2 more expensive. Sly 4 proved that Sly is a good fit for the Vita. Sucker Punch's games are amongst the best platformers seen on the PS2. The stealth-infused platforming has you sneaking around beautifully drawn cell-shaded environments as Sly Cooper, the cheeky raccoon thief and his likeable crew. The third game is the absolute pinnacle of the genre as it blends a huge number of gameplay variants to make it an absolute win from start to finish.

Thanks to cr3ampie at HotUkDeals.

Persona 4: The Golden only £17.50 at Gameseek on PS Vita (with free delivery code)

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Atlus, JRPG, PS Vita, PS Vita games

Persona 4: The Golden only £17.50 at Gameseek on PS Vita (with free delivery code)

Persona 4: The Golden | Gameseek | £17.50
Price ComparisonPersona 4: The Golden Review
Voucher Code: CELEBRATE

The PS Vita is a cult connoisseur's paradise, and Persona 4: The Golden is easily one of the best flagship games on the system. If not the best handheld games ever made. Matt awarded this splendid remake with a perfect score, which went above and beyond the incredible original with a full graphical makeover and hours of extra content. For £17.50 (including shipping with the CELEBRATE voucher code), it's worth having in your life. Thanks to cr3ampie @ HUKD!