Win Fable 2 Pub Games code

Fable 2 Pub games

Fable 2 Pub games

The Fable 2 Pub Games are out on Xbox Live Arcade and wouldn’t it be nice if you could get in on the action for the low low cost of free (without a pre-order)? Of course it would. Long time Xbox Domain reader Geo is running a contest where you’ll have a chance to win one of two codes he’ll be giving away each day. As of this writing 12 more days are left. Head on over to The World of Geo forums for more details. Registering and posting in the thread each day is all it takes to enter. Good Luck!

-William “thewilleffect” Bell-

XBD Review: Assault Heroes 2

During my review of Assault Heroes 2 this week, two undeniable truths made themselves readily apparent. My first realization is that I absolutely suck at fast-twitch games. Seriously. From Geometry Wars to Ikaruga… I’m really, really bad. The second truth is that I totally enjoy games that I suck at. I don’t know what it is. Perhaps a fast-twitch review will enlighten me. So lets dive right into this game.

Graphically, Assault Heroes 2 is a more polished version of the original Assault Heroes. I bought Assault Heroes 1 when it first graced the infant XBLA because the action was ridiculous and the challenge was welcome; it was also one of the prettiest arcade games to come in at the $10 mark. Not much has changed since then which could be a good or a bad thing. I think it’s a good thing because there wasn’t much that needed improved on. The characters are crisp looking. The particle effects are bright and the levels are diverse. For ten dollars, you can expect graphics that are better than some retail games. I’ll attribute that success to the well-laid graphics engine from AH1 being used. All in all, my only graphical complaint is the lack of a zoom. I know the dynamics of dealing with a camera angle in mid-assault is probably too much, but it would have been nice to see all the lush detail in the environment and my character. I can’t even complain about enemies (or my character) getting lost in the environment. Everything is spot on.

Graphics (25 Points Possible):
• Texture & Image Quality (5): 5 points
• Frame Rate Quality (5): 5 points
• Technical Effort (5): 5 points
• Overall Art Direction (10): 10 points

The audio in the game is reasonably expected. It’s nothing stellar, nothing bad. I can hear each bullet shooting, but it all seems to blend together into one cacophonous mess of bulletry (new word, just made it up). Having said that, I’m a bit of an audio snob. I have an above-average audio setup and the Xbox360 has all the tools to exploit systems like mine. Thus, I was a bit disappointed that AH2 didn’t take more advantage of my speakers. It would have been nice to have a richer echolocation of where enemy fire was coming from. Also, the screams from the exploding “terrorists” get really annoying really fast. I make it a point to shoot them first just out of spite. The soundtrack is appropriate, especially during boss battles. Overall, the audio is just average.

Audio (18 Points Possible):
• Sound Effects (6): 3 points
• Soundtrack (6): 5 points
• Sound Quality (6): 4 points

From a gameplay perspective, AH2 is pretty much on point. It’s addictive fun if you like fast-twitch games and it’s really well balanced. The endless hordes of enemies aren’t unfairly hard and the bosses are freaking huge which is a welcome throwback to R-Type if you’re old enough to remember that game. If you can handle them, the new hijack-able vehicles are an interesting addition. Personally, I find the new vehicles fun, albeit a bit useless. Sure, they break up the monotony of switching between the assault ATV and foot, but they only have 1 standard weapon each (2 on the tank technically). There is no direct advantage to being in the helicopter because it’s still just as susceptible to gunfire as the ATV and the tank is slow as molasses. Seriously, if it didn’t have a huge cannon on it, I’d just as soon walk because it’s a bullet magnet and can’t travel over all types of terrain. Still, it gets the job done. Moving onto the later missions (without giving away any spoilers), I love how diverse the locals become. Fresh challenges await you! I can’t really say that I fell in love with this game because it will probably find itself lost among the other action shooters I have stockpiled on my hard drive. It just doesn’t have that appeal that will keep gamers coming back for more and I feel that carried over from AH1. Don’t take that statement as a lack of fun; but you won’t find yourself craving this game after a few days of playing it through. As for the menus and HUD, they are both very clean. Weapon choice is clearly visible and your health, stats, and upgrade levels are easy to understand.

Gameplay (30 Points Possible):
• Storyline & Attachment (10): 6 points
• Character Control (10): 8 points
• Game Interface (5): 5 points
• Menu System (5): 5 points

And finally, how’s the replay value and multiplayer treating us in AH2? To be frank, it’s the same as AH1. Don’t expect any surprises here. The fun factor is present and accounted for in the single player mode and I didn’t have any issues playing online. Live didn’t have any issues with lag and the game code only hiccupped once when I was attempting to connect with other players. Online co-op is really a joy in the Assault Heroes games because the gameplay is focused on this type of interaction. I give the developers major props for infusing the online game with the same diversity and action as the single player game. Beyond the online co-op, don’t expect any surprises. I would have liked to see some more game modes thrown into the mix to make the multiplayer interesting and offset the lack of replay value in single player mode. I’m hopeful that some form of downloadable content rectifies this shortcoming; however, my hopes are diminished by the fact that extra DLC never came to fruition for AH1.

Replay Value & Multiplayer (25 Points Possible):
• Fun Factor (15): 12 points
• Xbox Live Features (5): 4 points
• Downloadable Content (5): 3 points

So what drives me to enjoy this game so much? Perhaps it’s the challenge of playing something that I’m not already good at (yes, I’m a sanctimonious jerk), or perhaps it’s the enjoyment I get from being taunted by my own virtual death scenes (yes, I’m being sadistic). The achievements are pretty challenging, so guess I simply enjoy games that challenge me to no end. Assault Heroes is a welcome challenge. I’ll still continue sucking at fast-twitch games (for reference, see my Geometry Wars score on my GamerCard) but that won’t stop me from enjoying my own endless defeat.

Above and Beyond (2 Points Possible):
• Achievements (1): 1 point
• That Little Extra (1): 1 point

Total Score = 82 out of 100

P.S. I altered the values of each category one last time. I really felt that gameplay should hold the most water and that the “something extra” category shouldn’t.

Dave “Whet Wurm” Wetty

Aces of the Galaxy and Roogoo XBLA bound this week

Up this week on Xbox Live Arcade are Ace’s of the Galaxy and Roogoo. One for the shooter fan in you and the other an entirely new concept that’s not entirely a new concept in and of itself, if that makes sense. Translating the descriptors of these titles instead of dulling them out in quote form should go something like this:

Aces of the Galaxy: Shoot, shoot, shoot, oh wait a minute, slow mo, shoot, shoot, and shoot some more. If that sounds cool, then this is the game for you.

Roogoo: This is the stuff dreams are made of, literally. A square block can go in a round hole can’t it?!

Vodpod videos no longer available.

[Via Gamerscore Blog]

-William “thewilleffect” Bell-

Your Wit vs Your Wager Contest Winners

The answer to the question posed for a chance to win a copy of Xbox Live Arcade title Wits and Wagers is:

Up until this post, the Xbox Domain had logged 3,521 posts.

Without going over, here are the top 3.

  1. Bob Walters with 3,521 exactly. How it was done is a mystery. You get a copy of the XBLA version of Wits and Wagers and a copy of the board game of which the XBLA version is based on as well.
  2. Indiana Hoosier with 2,500. You get a copy of the XBLA version of Wits and Wagers.
  3. GamjawanG with 2324. You too get a copy of the XBLA version of Wits and Wagers.

Congratulations to the winners, and a big thanks to North Star Games for providing the prizes.

-William “thewilleffect” Bell-

XBLA is getting new Galaga title?

Are you ready for a new Galaga title?

XBLAH! noticed that the German rating board has rated a new game titled “Galaga Legions”. I’m with everyone in hoping the Galaga franchise gets some sort of Pac-Man Championship-ish type of treatment.

[Via DToid] and [X3F]

[Image]

-Michael “Thrills Killa” Pacheco-

Double D Dodgeball Announced

It looks like we have two Dodgeball themed Xbox Live Arcade titles coming out this summer. Yukes has announced Double D Dodgeball for the Xbox Live Arcade which will be coming out this summer. The game features over eight participants in multiplayer modes, different ball types/courts and much more.

I used to love hitting the weaklings playing Dodgeball back in High School and now I can sort of relive those days with some crazy animated Dodgeball action.

Want more deets on Double D?

Double D Dodgeball features will include:

Eight-person multiplayer

Four modes: Exhibition, Player Match, Ranked Match and Tournament

GamerScore achievements and online leaderboards

Four ball types with multiple playing surfaces

Select between Eastern and Western rules

THE RULES

West Arena:

· Traditional method where two teams square off in an arena separated by a center line.

· Hit an opponent to knock them out.

· “Out” players are sent to the sidelines located behind their team’s side of the court.

· Return when a teammate knocks out an opponent.

East Arena:

· Arena contains a center line, and an outfield located around the outside of the court.

· One player from each team starts in the opponent’s outfield and can throw balls at the other team.

· ”Out” players are sent to the outfield. Hit an opponent from there to reenter the match.

Click on the Screenshots below to enlarge.

[Via Press Release]

-Michael “Thrills Killa” Pacheco-

Roogoo comes to Xbox Live Arcade next week

Who’s in the mood for another puzzler? South Peak games is shipping out Roogoo next Wednesday on the Xbox Live Arcade for all the crazy puzzler fans. The game will cost 800 Microsoftie Points.

All jokes with rhyming Roogoo with “Poo Poo” are free.

More Information on Roogoo [Wikipedia]

[Via Joystiq]

-Michael “Thrills Killa” Pacheco-