Features// SPOnG's Review of the Year 2010: November

Posted 3 Jan 2011 09:28 by
All eyes were on the UK video games chart throughout the month, but it was the one released at the beginning of November that proved to be the most interesting.

Mainly because it wasn?t meant to be released at all - trade body UKIE had leaked sales figures for Fable III, Fallout: New Vegas and more from Chart-Track?s subscribed insider content (UKIE Leaks UK Chart Sales Figures - Rock Band 3 Sold 7.3k Copies UPDATED, 1st November). As the headline suggests, Rock Band 3 did not fare so well at launch.

What also failed to ignite the charts was Activision?s remake of Goldeneye 007 on the Nintendo Wii. The update, developed by Eurocom, did not manage to enter the Top 10 in its crucial debut week - it only ranked #13, leaving everyone to wonder exactly where the hell all those ?hardcore? Wii gamers were at (Goldeneye 007 Wii Fails to Crack Top 10 - Hardcore Gaming Fail, 8th November). Activision said that increased marketing will get it the sales it deserves, but we weren?t so optimistic.

One franchise return that people would most definitely follow through and buy if announced will be Grand Theft Auto 5 - and apparently Take Two is to unveil the next title in the popular Rockstar series at some point next year. That is, if it knows what?s good for it, according to an analyst (GTA 5 for 2011 Means a Healthy Future for Take 2?, 25th November).

Mike Hickey of Janco Partners predicts that L.A. Noire and Max Payne 3 will tide the publisher over until a supposed 2012 launch of GTA 5. Both Rockstar games, huh? I guess nobody?s taking bets on any of Take Two?s other high profile franchises, then?

We were in the eye of the release scheduling storm in November, with an absolute avalanche of games crashing through our door just begging for a review. We only have so many hands, brains and eyes (individually mind, not as one big mutant entity), but we certainly did the best we could. Among the cream of the crop was Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit (91%), Assassin?s Creed: Brotherhood (93% for fans, 78% for newcomers), Sonic Colours (93%) and Donkey Kong Country Returns (90%).

We also reviewed some good games in Time Crisis: Razing Storm (86%), Fallout: New Vegas (82%) and God of War: Ghost of Sparta (78%), and found a better-than-average experience in Splatterhouse (69%). Fighters Uncaged for the Xbox 360?s Kinect got a poor 38% score, and you can just picture poor Mark?s suffering as he?s desperately trying to fight back the pain in his review. We almost had to call for help, thought he was being abused. Turns out, in a way, he was.

Somewhere in the madness we managed to have a good crack at the Battlefield 2: Bad Company expansion pack, Vietnam (Lauren was very impressed with it) and there was time to have our very first look at Rockstar and Team Bondi?s gangster crime game, L.A. Noire. We?re just troopers, we are.


Andy Serkis arguably got his big break salivating on the big screen as Gollum in Lord of the Rings, but how do you suppose he got into the video games industry? His road to working on Enslaved is a little more boring - it took a mortgage broker (A Mortgage Broker Got Andy Serkis in Gaming, 8th November).

Apparently the story goes that the actor?s broker was the brother of a Ninja Theory developer, and it was through him that Serkis played Heavenly Sword. ?He showed me a trailer after we'd discussed mortgage rates and I thought it was fantastic.? Alright, then.
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