Month in Review: February 2005

This feature includes the games of the month, our monthly buyers' guide, and a link to the newest Let's GameSpot.

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Welcome to the GameSpot Complete Buyers' Guide. Our guide is in Adobe Acrobat (.pdf) format, and it's laid out so you can print it out and take it on the go. With this guide, you'll have access to our thoughts and ratings for every title that's appeared in the last month. Take the guide to your local game store and inform your buying decisions.
Let's GameSpot returns from its peaceful village lifestyle to reclaim the title as your favorite gaming review show. All challengers, including NBA Street V3, Gran Turismo 4, and Tekken 5, are no match for the ancient techniques of our powerful "Month in Review" style.

Games of the Month

Dai Senryaku VII: Modern Military Tactics (XBOX)

"Dai Senryaku VII is an old-fashioned kind of game, and it gets by just fine on its classical characteristics: tons of depth, tons of detail, and tons of replay value. It's not going to knock anyone's socks off from a presentational standpoint (though it's definitely a lot more attractive than most wargames), but it could easily keep you engrossed for hours, whether you're playing against the AI or against a like-minded friend. Dai Senryaku VII showed up on these shores with no fanfare, and it's not liable to convert anyone who isn't already a fan of this style of gaming. But its arrival is great news for strategy fans, who'd be hard-pressed to find a better way to spend $20 for their Xboxes." -Greg Kasavin, from GameSpot's full review

Gran Turismo 4 (PS2)

"Gran Turismo 4 arrives as a game operating under heavy expectations, if only because each installment in the series has been such an epic event. Despite its numerous delays and some notable feature omissions, GT4 is a game that will keep enthusiasts busy for months. And due to its upgraded presentation, it will likely win some new fans as well. Though it suffers from a curious lack of evolution in terms of some of its central aspects, most notably its racing AI, when GT4 works to its strengths, it delivers like few games of this console generation." -Brian Ekberg, from GameSpot's full review

MVP Baseball 2005 (GC, PC, PS2, XBOX)

"MVP Baseball 2005 doesn't try to reinvent the wheel. EA Sports has simply taken last year's game, improved it in myriad ways, and then tacked on a few new features to make the end result that much more appealing. Some of these upgrades are significant, such as the addition of an ownership-based franchise mode and the inclusion of single-A minor league teams, not to mention the ability to finally be able to set up custom tournaments in the online mode (in the PlayStation 2 and Xbox versions). Other upgrades are minor, such as the optional hitter's eye, batter's box, and manager tirade features. Meanwhile, some upgrades are downright subtle, like all the graphical tweaks and extra player animations that ultimately add up to help this latest game look and feel even more realistic than last year's." -Frank Provo, from GameSpot's full review

NBA Street V3 (GC, PS2, XBOX)

"NBA Street V3 offers a fantastic amount of content, from tons of unlockables and customizable options in the single-player game to the addition of a smooth online mode. The developers have also managed to make significant meaningful tweaks to the gameplay without wrecking a proven formula for fun. If you're a fan of basketball, you owe it to yourself to check out NBA Street V3, which is the new king of the court as far as arcade basketball games go." -Bob Colayco, from GameSpot's full review

Tekken 5 (PS2)

"A big part of Tekken 5's appeal is due to the quality of its execution. While some of the extra modes aren't as strong as they could have been, the core fighting is nearly perfect, whether you're playing against other humans or computer-controlled opposition. Toss in a fantastic soundtrack and some of the best-looking graphics you've seen on a console, along with an insane number of different moves to learn and master from a variety of interesting characters, and you've got a fighting game that's even more addictive and exciting than Tekken was when it exploded onto the PlayStation back in 1995." -Jeff Gerstmann, from GameSpot's full review

World Soccer Winning Eleven 8 International (PC, PS2, XBOX)

"World Soccer Winning Eleven 8 International is KCET's best soccer game to date, which basically makes it the best soccer game ever made...even taking the seminal Sensible World of Soccer games on the Amiga into account. The competition between KCET and EA Sports is now closer than ever, and which of this season's games you choose to play will ultimately be determined by what you're looking for from a soccer offering. If online play and official licenses are high on your wish list, then FIFA Soccer 2005 is the only way to go. If you can manage to play without those features and are looking for the most realistic soccer game available, in addition to an all-consuming career mode that you can play when your friends aren't around, then Winning Eleven 8 is definitely the game for you." -Justin Calvert, from GameSpot's full review

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