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Jun 30, 2011

Rabbids will rule the world one day

Rayman Raving Rabbids
Game Category: Action - Party Game, Kids
Developer / Distributor: Ubisoft
Release Date: 11 Dec 2006 
Rating: ESRB - Everyone

Rayman Raving RabbidsIntroduction
Rayman... that very name brings back lots of fond memories for me. I still remember the day I got my very first Rayman game; that was an excellent platformer style game. Back in 1995, Rayman did not ooze that much charisma as he was only an animated 2D sprite, but his looks and abilities have changed so much over a few short years that I can say Rayman has probably won himself a legion of new fans.

Seeking to catapult Rayman into the limelight once again, it seems the designers at Ubisoft must have had a field day dreaming up this new game. The game whose title is Rayman Raving Rabbids (RRR), features a new co-star. Well, not exactly a single co-star... but a bunch... no, an ARMY of these insanely cute little white bunnies who look like they have been cloned from some futuristic machine. 

Rayman is going to get bullied, swamped, and overwhelmed by the Rabbids' relentless tricks, so come on and help him out. You'll be bowled over by the ridiculous slapstick humor in this party game that features a cast of thousands. Prepare to beat the Rabbids at their own games, and while you're at it, introduce this game to your kids and friends, because a total of 4 can play this fun little gem of a party game.

PS -  And, do note that that the word Rabbid is spelt with a "d" at the end.

Get ready to laugh yourself silly

Jun 28, 2011

Master time to become the Ultimate Weapon

Game Category: Action - First Person, Shooter
Developer / Distributor: Saber Interactive / Sierra Entertainment
Release Date: 30 Oct 2007 
Rating: ESRB - Mature

Listening to the lyrics of Aqua as Lene Nystrøm croons out "If only I could turn back time" on the radio today, I can't help but think back on this cool game from four years ago that allowed me to master time and make me into one very happy gamer.

Timeshift is the name of the game, and it comes courtesy of Saber Interactive and Sierra Entertainment. Saber Interactive's last project before this was Will Rockwhich was kind of a let down, and I had a funny feeling that Timeshift would be just as bad; this opinion was reinforced by Timeshift's troubled development history.

Timeshift tells the story of the building of a time machine in the form of a jump suit. Two of these jump suits are built, but one of them, the Alpha Suit, is stolen by Dr. Aiden Krone, a former Professor of Applied Physics. As the protagonist, you will be donning the Beta Suit, a newer version built to military specifications, to go after Aiden in a bid to stop him from creating a time paradox or worse still, annihilate all life thanks to his selfless act.

I have always been thrilled by such science fiction yarns. Suffice to say, I am glad that Timeshift saw the light of day and that I made the wise choice to get myself a copy back then.

Now, here's why...

The next big thing

Jun 27, 2011

Oui, mademoiselle

Art of Murder: Hunt for the Puppeteer
Game Category: Adventure
Developer / Distributor: City Interactive
Release Date: 17 Feb 2009 
Rating: ESRB - Teen

Art of Murder – Hunt for the PuppeteerIntroduction
CSI style games are quite the rage today, so for a change of pace I thought I'd take you through a murder investigation.

Art of Murder: Hunt for the Puppeteer has you attempting to follow up on a series of grisly murders taking place in France. The murderer, suspected to have originated in New Orleans appears to be active now in Paris, the City of Love. The murders in Paris are not an act of a copycat murderer as this guy's modus operandi is apparently similar to the case back in the States. The New Orleans murderer has this fetish for propping up his victims like marionettes on strings and leaving behind an ugly caricature of a doll dressed in 18th century clothing.

You will be playing the role of FBI agent Nicole Bonnet (once again) as you try to stop the perpetrator from committing these senseless murders.

The Art of Murder: Hunt for the Puppeteer is the second game in the franchise from City Interactive, a developer based in Poland. For those who love to collect or learn more about the entire franchise, the title of the first game has the tagline of FBI Confidentialwhile the third game is known as Cards of Destiny.

Elementary, my dear Nicole

Jun 26, 2011

Going bananas in space

Space Chimps
Game Category: Action - Platformer, Kids
Developer / Distributor: Redtribe / Brash Entertainment
Release Date: 14 Jul 2008 
Rating: ESRB - E10+

Hold up, guys. Before you leave the website in disappointment knowing that I am reviewing another kiddie sort of game, then you may be mistaken.

This is a game based on the movie Space Chimps- a 2008 animated film that tells the story of three chimpanzees who travel into outer space. They enter a wormhole and go on a zany adventure of exploration. The film culminates with the trio stopping the plans of a despotic alien who have enslaved the local population.

Now that you got the back story, then you might like to know that Space Chimps The Game is quite a fun little number that has you reliving some out-of-this-world platforming moments.

There are three chimps in the movie, but you only get to control two of them in the game. They are Ham III, a descendant of Ham the Chimpanzee from NASA, and Lieutenant Luna, a fearless and intelligent female chimp.

Chimps in space!

Jun 25, 2011

Come on baby, do the locomotion

Game Category: Simulation
Developer / Distributor: Atari
Release Date: 9 Sep 2004 
Rating: ESRB - Everyone, PEGI 3+

The last time I reviewed a Chris Sawyer game was more than 5 months ago, and it was Rollercoaster Tycoon 2 - Triple Thrill Pack. That game scored a pretty high review score which you can read about here. With such a high standard set, Chris Sawyer's next release would not only have to be big, it had to be mightily good plus incredibly bold in the direction it took.

When news came out that Chris would embark on bringing a new version of Transport Tycoon to life, fans got excited. Released way back in 1994, it would finally take about a decade for this cult favorite to be revived. The new game would also be christened with a new title - Chris Sawyer's Locomotion.

Using the same engine of Rollercoaster Tycoon 2 but with some substantial modification, Chris finally released Locomotion in the later half of 2004. Locomotion looks very similar to Rollercoaster Tycoon 2 in terms of the game interface while the rest of the game takes features from Transport Tycoon and streamlines it for the modern audience.

But is this game in any way bigger, better, and bolder?

Let's begin our journey

Jun 23, 2011

Garden as though you will live forever

Game Category: Casual - Hidden Object, Kids
Developer / Distributor: Playrix
Release Date: 12 Nov 2009 
Rating: ESRB - Rating Pending

Gardenscapes (TM)Introduction
Gardening has been around since time immemorial. In fact the most famous garden of ancient history would be the Hanging Gardens of Babylon. Today, we have famous gardens such as the Yu Garden of Shanghai, the Keukenhoff Gardens in Amsterdam, the famous garden of Versailles, and my country's very own Singapore Botanic Gardens.

In visiting such gardens, you have to admire the amount of patience and care gone into transforming these places into such immaculate swaths of lush greenery that are often dotted with bright colorful flowers. Gardens of such repute also have their own tranquil bodies of water and landscaped hills. And to add to the magical effect, they are often adorned with life-like sculptures and marvelous fountains.

In Playrix's recent offer called Gardenscapes, you will find yourself inheriting your grandfather's home and gardens. Together with Austin the butler, you will be scouring the house for things to sell in a long series of jumble sales. With the money you earn, you will be able to buy accessories and sculpt the garden back to its former glory.

Time to garden

Jun 22, 2011

Been too busy kicking Nazi butt

War Front: Turning Point
Game Category: Strategy - Real Time
Developer / Distributor: Digital Reality / CDV Software
Release Date: 19 Feb 2007 
Rating: ESRB - Teen, PEGI 16+

Once again war looms on Daily PC Game Reviews. Yes, it's another real time strategy game and this time the game is from Digital Reality (also known for their work on the Imperium Galacticaand Haegemoniaseries). This game is based on an alternate history of World War II, it's a pretty and polished game which is why I am serving it up early in my list of reviews-to-do.

War Front: Turning Point (WFTP) puts you in an alternative world where Hitler was assassinated early on in World War II. The resulting void was quickly replaced by new leaders who escalated the war to even greater heights. The ensuing chaos led to more high tech weapons research as well as a new twist in the war - that being London's capture by the Nazis. And this is where you come in to the game. To liberate London!

With two campaigns to go through, you will have a blast of a time as you go into battle with heroes who have abilities that make the difference in the war. What also makes WFTP stand out are the luscious video cutscenes that tell a thrilling story laden with some interesting twists. The game play in WFTP is also on par with other good real time strategy games out there - Red Alert 2 especially comes to mind. So you are not wrong to get it.

A time for war

Jun 20, 2011

The Prey is Protein

Game Category: Action - First Person, Shooter
Developer / Distributor: Human Head Studios / 2K Games
Release Date: 11 Jul 2006 
Rating: ESRB - Mature

Does life exist on other planets? We've asked ourselves this question for so long that it sometimes makes me wonder why we have not yet had First Contact. Being human, we sometimes tend to think naively and tend to model alien races based on ourselves, such as the good natured curious little green men that we fantasize will meet up with us one fine day.

What if an alien race would one day come to our planet and eye the human race as food; protein to sustain them.


That is exactly what happens in the long awaited game from Human Head Studios. In development since 1995, Prey has taken eleven years to be finally released in its current incarnation. You will take an incredible (and at times heart rending) trip into outer space where you must fight against an insidious alien race who wants to do more than just eat us for lunch.

Want to learn more? Read on...

Prey's humble beginnings

Jun 19, 2011

The best of both worlds

Hannah Montana: The Movie Game
Game Category: Adventure - Kids, Rhythm
Developer / Distributor: n-Space / Disney Interactive
Release Date: 8 Jun 2009 
Rating: ESRB - Everyone

Today I will do a simple review of a game that seems to have been shunned by most critics out there. How will we ever know if the game is good or not unless somebody out there in the world reviews it, right? Ok, I'll take on the challenge. I'll pop the disc into my PC and then click on the Install button that appears.

But then a klaxon blares over my head and my conscience tries to drive me into denial mode. It says: No! Don't do this! You will tarnish the reputation of Daily PC Game Reviews. This is a girl's game and people are going to hate you for doing this!

Frankly, I don't believe in that. If you have been reading my website, you will know that I have quite an eclectic mix of game reviews on offer. In fact, I have reviewed at least a 130 games already, but not one of them was a rhythm game that targets itself at kids (be it girls - or boys). Well, the Hannah Montana: The Movie (HMTM) game fits this role to a tee.

To bring you up to speed on the movie, brunette Miley Stewart (portrayed by Miley Cyrus) is leading a double life as Hannah Montana. Donning a blond wig to portray Hannah, Miley has fooled everyone so far. Now follow Miley as she returns to her hometown Crowley Corners with her father, Robby.

This is a game based on music rhythms  

Jun 18, 2011

God does not play dice

Black and White 2
Game Category: Strategy Simulation hybrid - Real Time
Developer / Distributor: Lionhead Studios / Electronic Arts
Release Date: 4 Oct 2005 
Rating: ESRB - Teen, PEGI 12+

Peter Molyneux is a name synonymous with highly intellectual games. These are games that allow you to do almost anything you desire within the bounds of the game. Peter had a hand in designing well known favorites such as Populous, Powermonger, Theme Park, and Dungeon Keeperwhile he was with Bullfrog Productions.

When Bullfrog Productions got merged into EA UK, Peter Molyneux had already formed up a new game studio by the name of Lionhead Productions. The fledgling studio's first release was none other than Black and White- the first ever game that tries to emulate what it is like to be a god. The game did so splendidly for the studio that an expansion was spawned (Black and White: Creature Isle).

After that success, a new sequel was co-designed with Ron Millar, formerly of Blizzard Entertainment and designer of Warcraft II - Tides of Darknessand Starcraft. Black and White 2took some of what worked in the first release and added in even more new features to shift the focus of the game from experimentation to more like a real time strategy war game. This move however has not been too well received by some fans of the first game. Therefore if you have played Black and White before, you may not like everything you see in Black and White 2, but if you are entirely new to this franchise, welcome to this great game that provides a fix for whatever god complex you may have.

Play god

Jun 16, 2011

Situational awareness is key to victory

Wings of Prey
Game Category: Simulation
Developer / Distributor: Gaijin Entertainment and Iceberg Interactive / YuPlay
Release Date: 25 Dec 2009 
Rating: ESRB - Teen

Wings of PreyIntroduction
Just last month, I did a review of a flight simulation game by the name of Air Conflicts: Air Battles of World War II. That was a pretty good game released in 2006 with lots of different aircraft types to fly and great arcade fun.

Today, I am at it again with another flight simulation game released only two years ago. The game I am reviewing is Wings of Prey from Gaijin Entertainment and Iceberg Interactive.

To paraphrase their sales blurb in one paragraph - Wings of Prey has you fighting in huge aerial battlegrounds during World War II. You also get the chance to be involved in ground military operations as you pilot bomber aircraft in taking out ground targets; not forgetting the occasional sea targets. The game will bring you through six memorable campaigns that include locations such as Stalingrad, the Ardennes, Sicily, and Korsun.

Please be aware that the footprint for the game is a whopping 10 GB. I'd reckon that it is the standard for games in recent times, but as we know quality is better than quantity.

Well, you can rest assured though that Wings of Prey is filled with quality goodness and topped up with magnificent game play and graphics.

One of the more recent World War II flight simulator

Jun 15, 2011

I want that Powerdrome trophy!

Game Category: Racing
Developer / Distributor: Applied Atomics and Second Intention / ZOO Digital
Release Date: 16 Jun 2004 
Rating: PEGI 12+

Racing games always gets me on an adrenaline high especially when I am accelerating down a straightaway and whizzing by all my opponents at a breakneck speed. Most games are however grounded on Earth, and as we know, wheeled vehicles can only go that fast.

Well then, what if we had a game with a science fiction background?

The Thousand World Hegemony has conquered all and everyone is at peace. Now, what better way is there to have fun than to play Powerdrome - a racing sport that uses lightweight hovercraft-like vehicles known as Blades. To top it off, let's hold the game on tracks built on various worlds. These tracks will require the ultimate driving skill to successfully beat the track record.

And that folks is basically the idea behind Powerdrome, a game originally released in 1988 on the Atari ST personal computer by Electronic Arts (now EA Games). The game was later rejuvenated into its current form by Argonaut Games, but made available only on the Xbox and PS2 consoles. It was shortly ported over to the PC by Second Intention, a game developer based in Wellington, New Zealand.

Give me speed!

Jun 13, 2011

There's going to be hell tonight

Hell's Kitchen
Game Category: Casual - Time Management
Developer / Distributor: Ludia / Ubisoft
Release Date: 22 Sep 2008 
Rating: ESRB - Teen

Gordon Ramsayhas become sort of a fixture in the hall at home because my mother is hopelessly addicted to watching him on Cable TV. Whenever he's on, I usually find myself distracted from my computer just to see what this talented and famous chef was up to. Gordon's rather well known for his fiery temperament in his shows as well as his tendency to blurt out profanities. So I am also watching along just to see what colorful language Gordon would be using in that episode.

You can judge from the titles of Gordon's shows (like The Boiling Point, Kitchen Nightmares, and The F Word), that it's not easy being a chef. His job is so stressful that you would probably pity the poor chef-wannabe contestants that appear on Hell's Kitchen - a reality cooking competition TV show hosted by Gordon himself. The contestants get so stressed out by all that lambasting from Gordon that I sometimes wonder why they even bother to put themselves through that torture.

I guess it was inevitable, but we now have a computer game based on Hell's Kitchen. And it's hosted by none other than Gordon; get ready for stress under fire (from Gordon Ramsay himself). Don't scream now, Ubisoft obviously know what they are doing since this game from Ludia is obviously targeted at people who watch Gordon religiously and also have a penchant love for casual games.

Ooh... intimidating!

Jun 12, 2011

Que la course commence

Pro Cycling Manager - Tour de France 2010
Game Category: Simulation - Sports
Developer / Distributor: Cyanide Studios / Focus Home Interactive
Release Date: 16 Jun 2010 
Rating: PEGI 3+

Pro Cycling Manager 2010Introduction
I find it hard to believe that Pro Cycling Manager has been around for 10 years already, but it's true. It all started with the release of Cycling Manager in 2001. Back then, for the sake of publicity, Cyanide and Focus Home Interactive had tagged Erik Zabel's name to the game. For those in the dark, Erik had won the prestigious Tour de France and wore the green jersey from 1996 to 2001 for a record six consecutive years. Erik's name was dropped from the third and fourth release in favor of a more general name for the cycling simulator.

From 2005 onwards, the word Pro was added to the title, this was in my opinion a good direction in re-branding the game. In actual fact, Pro Cycling Manager - Tour de France (PCM) has likely continued to see strong sales with a new season release every year timed to coincide with the Tour de France.

I own a copy of the 2007 season, but I decided to review the more recent version. The 2010 season definitely has much more bells and whistles than its humble beginnings ten years ago. There has also been a graphics overhaul which will provide for a more realistic and immersive game experience. This is also my chance to tell the world about this great niche game, and I feel it deserves much more attention than it is currently receiving. If soccer managers are thriving, why can't cycling managers then?

Are you ready to begin the 2010 racing cycle?

Jun 11, 2011

Lucky thirteen!

Game Category: Action - Shooter, First Person
Developer / Distributor: Ubisoft Paris / Ubisoft
Release Date: 9 Oct 2003 
Rating: ESRB - Mature, PEGI 16+

The world of comics has been around for such a long time that sometimes the line between them and games gets rather blurred. Take a look at The Incredible Hulkand Spiderman, those comics have been around so long that it is only natural for some game developer to come along and strike up a deal with the owners of the intellectual property.

Today's game XIII (or also known as Thirteen) from Ubisoft Paris features comics very prominently. Look at the main menu screenshot below, it's designed in the form of a comic strip. The same goes for the introduction movie to XIII, it starts of as a movie but quickly zooms out and pans to show its actually a panel from a comic book. In fact, the game is based off an actual comic seriesdeveloped for the regions of Belgium and France, but translated for English audiences worldwide by Cinebook.

XIII starts off with the USA reeling from the assassination of President Sheridan. The scene then changes to that of an amnesiac man found on Brighton Beach. With no recollection of his past memories, but yet seemingly capable of performing deeds just like a clone of Jason Bourne, the game has you controlling our poor hero as he struggles to piece together the mystery of his current situation.

PS - Why XIII? I hear your question - it's the number tattooed on our poor amnesiac. You wouldn't want the game to have been named John Doe, would you now?
Lucky for some