My Top Favourite Games for 2013 Part 2: 7-5

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If you've missed part 1 you can find it here- My Top Favourite Games for 2013 Part 1: 10-8

After grinding a few more gears on Dark Souls and of course playing some Bravely Default (3DS) when I'm out and about while getting the bus into Newcastle and meeting up with a few of my friends. Anyways thought I'd get back to my second part of my Top 10 Favourite Games for 2013 from 7-5.

7- Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy (3DS)

I've might have already mentioned in the past that I've managed to complete all of the Daily Puzzles on Miracle Mask before the next Layton was released last month which was Azran Legacy. It's supposed to be the last game in the series for Professor Layton but there's also the release of Layton VS Phoenix Wright for Spring 2014 so it won't be the last time we see Professor Layton plus in Azran Legacy there's also more than 500 Daily puzzles to download for over a year on the Daily Download list. Story takes places after Miracle Mask where Layton, Luke and Emmy set of on their next adventure what secrets will they unlock on their final adventure?

6- Persona 4 Arena (UK/Euro Release)-

It might have been almost a year it was released in both Japan and America everywhere else including UK/Europe finally got their hands on Persona 4 Arena back in May; even I went as Yu Narukami on launch day during that mourning while purchasing the game at GAME which was fun. I loved the BlazBlue series and this was made by the same the team that created Persona 4 Arena, the story itself takes place two months after the events of the main story including some surprise characters from Persona 3 make an appearance as well. The gameplay controls are very straight forward and can easily be picked up by anyone who doesn't play fighting games very often and you can't say no to the Persona 3 and 4 soundtracks to Persona 4 Arena if you are a fan of the series.

5- Animal Crossing: New Leaf (3DS)

I'm pretty surprised that I've spent more than 60 hours on Animal Crossing and keeps making me want to come back to my own town, the funny part is that I've named my town Inaba which was from Persona 4 (PS2) and even changed the town theme to the Junes Theme if you've played Persona 4 that is you may get the reference. In New Leaf you are the Mayor of your own town and you can decide what you want to do in your town and plus create your own clothing designs and play with friends either local or online. Back in June went to a Streetpass Meet and this one was based on the Animal Crossing launch event which was a ton of fun including a few competitions including Bug Catching and Fishing, plus it was nice hearing comments from everyone else on how much they've enjoyed New Leaf within the first few days it was released.

  • 10- Project X Zone (3DS)
  • 9- DuckTales Remastered
  • 8- Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate (3DS)
  • 7- Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy (3DS)
  • 6- Persona 4 Arena (PS3/360)
  • 5- Animal Crossing: New Leaf (3DS)

What are your thoughts so far on my list, any games on this list that you've played or haven't played?

My Top Favourite Games for 2013 Part 1: 10-8

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I hope that everyone has enjoyed their Christmas Holidays; I know I have spending time with friends and family plus saw the movie Frozen last weekend as well which I will work on a movie on that at one point. Got some new games during Christmas which should keep me busy for a long time and finally got Dark Souls (PS3) which I've still haven't picked up or played after it was released back in 2011.

Anyways thought I'd start to post my Top 10 Favourite Games for 2013, this year has been great for games and there's been quite a few good titles along the way here is my list from 10-8

10- Project X Zone (3DS):

Project X Zone will always be one of those bizarre cross-over games you'll ever come across with the likes of SEGA, Capcom and Bandai Namco. The story might not make any sense to most gamers but its hard-core gamers would enjoy this even more plus certain characters from various games make an appearance such as Jill Valentine and Chris Redfield, Jin and Ling and Kurt and Riela from Valkyria Chronicles III. But you might just say that this game kind of reminds me of The Avengers where all Marvel heroes come together and fight evil, plus you can easily spend more than 50 hours on clearing the main story.

9- DuckTales Remastered (PSN/Steam/Xbox Live)

I do remember watching the cartoons on an early Saturday and Sunday morning, plus remember the movie quite well. It was released on the NES back in 1989 and 24 years later the original game still lives up to a classic game to any retro gamer. When the Remastered version was announced back in Spring 2013 nobody was not suspecting this at all. The game itself feels like a lost episode of the DuckTales series but it does make a great touch for a game and keeps its fans happy if they remember watching the series as a child back then. I have played the original and the game itself is still amazing as it was from the addicting gameplay and the memorable soundtrack, listening to the soundtrack in DuckTales Remastered is great to listen to and randomly singing the Moon Level thanks to brentalfloss (http://www.youtube.com/user/brentalfloss)

8- Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate (3DS)

I still play Monster Hunter Freedom Unite now and then on my PSP but when I heard about a Monster Hunter coming to the 3DS thought this would be a great idea for a 3DS game. Plus I liked the idea of playing the game with friends or people who have this game, the downside to the 3DS version however is that there was no online co-op, meaning you can't play online with a friend like you would do for the likes of Mario Kart 7 or Animal Crossing: New Leaf. I have played a few missions with a few of my friends using the local-multiplayer thanks to the StreetPass Meets which are all over the UK now as it is including one here in Newcastle. For any Monster Hunter fan including myself this is worth checking out but you may want to pick up a Second-Analog stick if you see one cheap for your 3DS.

Sonic the Hedgehog- 3DS Review

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Recently bought a Mega Drive game on the 3DS store almost 2 weeks ago mainly because it was a part of my childhood and the first game I've ever played. As soon as I saw this on the 3DS eShop I just had to buy and wanted to do a mini review on this as well, I could have posted an actual review on it but wasn't able to post an actual review on it on Gamespot so now it's a review on a blog instead.

For over the last 20 years Sonic the Hedgehog has come a long way from the 16-bit era during the 4th generation of gaming Sonic was the mascot for Sega back in 1991 and making his first debut the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis; and of course going head-to-head against Nintendo during the sales of both consoles. But now you can easily pick up this game on any console or handheld you can even pick the game in Game Collections like Sonic Mega Collection or the SEGA Mega Drive Collection, what does the 3DS version have to offer to gamers and Sonic fans out there you may ask?

Sonic the Hedgehog still offers the same gameplay as it did in the original but in the 3DS version you've got the option to change versions of the game itself the Japanese or the International version. The Japanese version includes superior but minor enhancements in some visuals in the game and providing an extra life for every 50,000 points. It looks a lot better and allows you to claim lives a lot quicker than you would in the original. For Sonic fans and video game veterans you might be tempted to tackle the tougher International version of the game but be warned that the International version retains annoying bugs, such as cruel deaths on spikes and certain enemies that have irrational hit boxes, you could say that it's a little more tougher to beat on that setting.

Another new feature being added in the 3DS version is that you can now Spin Dash in Sonic by hold the down button and pressing either buttons to pick up speed, however the Spin Dash was introduced in Sonic 2 when it was first released back in 1992 using the Spin Dash in Sonic the Hedgehog can make you reach higher places or certain places you couldn't reach in the original version especially if there is a steep hill in the way you can just speed your way to the top; or you can Spin Dash into a bunch of enemies which appear all at once in certain levels makes it easier to get pass. But you do have the option to turn it on or off before starting the game itself just like you can do with the game settings when it comes to International and Japanese.

Like the original nothing hasn't really changed since 1991 you've still got the same 7 levels but 6 of those levels will be in 3 Act Zones and if you collect more than 50 rings and make it towards the end of the level you can jump into the giant ring which leads you to a special which is where you can try and grab a Chaos Emerald without touching the Goals around the stages in a little maze. And at the end of the third Act in each of the levels you'll encounter Dr Robotnik, defeat him a few times you've completed the level and ready to move on to the next set of 3 Acts in that level. What still amazes me that the 16-bit graphics and visuals haven't changed as much since then and seeing all of this on a handheld console is impressive you can turn on or turn off the 3D on your 3DSif you wanted to plus the soundtrack is still as memorable as ever from Green Hill Zone up to Star Light Zone, yet another extra being added you can now level select at the start of the game instead of putting in the classic cheat code at the title screen.

Picking up the 3DS version of Sonic the Hedgehog is worth the purchase for both new comers and the fans of the series will get a kick out of it, but the original version which was on the Sega Mega Drive still shouldn't be ignored because the game itself is a classic and should be played by everyone and it gives a great example how well games were during the 16-bit era of gaming back in the 90's. This still delivers cautious gameplay rather than the speedy creativity which has been used in other Sonic games on other consoles and systems, there are some memorable moments but if you've played Sonic the Hedgehog on past systems and consoles you won't find much else in this version on the 3DS but it's still highly recommended for fans for those looking for something retro on their 3DS.

8/10

Movie Review- The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

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It was my day off and the cinema in my area which is in Newcastle is half price at the Empire Cinema, managed to see the second part of The Hobbit mainly because I'm a fan of the book and of course played the game as well which was released back in 2003 on almost every system. Thought I'd post my movie review on part 2 of The Hobbit-

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

UK Release- December 13th 2013

Mins- 161 minutes

I've have read the book multiple times before the film was released and I would say that The Hobbit is a lot simpler and easier to follow on its story plot, with The Hobbit being directed by Peter Jackson it has been split in to 3 parts but it's also nice to feel welcomed back to Middle-Earth if you've either read the books, watched the movies or even played the games. If you've watched part 1 which was An Unexpected Journey the story continues the adventures of Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) as he journeys with the Wizard Gandalf (Ian McKellen) and thirteen Dwarves, led by Thorin Oakenshield (Richard Armitage) on an epic quest to reclaim the lost Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor.

Bilbo and the rest of the thirteen Dwarves are still being chased by a pack of Orcs lead by Azog who wants Thorin's head at any price, but the biggest reason why most people would see this film and of course the fans of The Hobbit book itself is seeing the dragon Smaug on the big screen who is voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch. I would really admit that when you see Bilbo meeting Smaug inside the lonely mountains will likely be everyone's favourite scene and moment when it comes to The Hobbit hearing those memorable lines Barrel Rider, Web-cutter and plus Smaug telling Bilbo his titles like "My teeth are like knives, my claws are like spears and my breath is death" you really do want to start quoting those lines when it comes to watching the film. Not only that the visuals and animation used for Smaug are really impressive to look at making it feel that you've seen a real dragon and plus Peter Jackson does know how to make a good trilogy just like his past work on Lord of the Rings.

But The Desolation of Smaug did feel a little disappointing mainly because if you've read the book like I have it feels like they've taken a few scenes in and out. Stuff like this has been done before in the past with most films being based of a book; however most of the film did kept focusing on The Lord of Rings series 60 years that the dark lord will return before the events of Frodo's adventure on destroying the One Ring. But overall it's still a film worth checking out just be sure to watch The Unexpected Journey before watching The Desolation Of Smaug because you may feel a little lost as you watch as you go along, too bad we have to wait til 2014 for the third and final part of The Hobbit trilogy but hopefully it'll be good as the first two films.

4/5 (4 Stars)

I hope you've enjoyed reading my movie review :D

Christmas Levels/Themes that have been used in Video Games

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That's right the Holidays are coming no I'm not talking about the Coca-Cola Trucks that you see on the TV or seen a truck in your area. No this time I'll be talking about Christmas themed games or levels that do have a Christmas theme in them, this topic came from a people I know and were talking about the Christmas Holidays and then had the thought of what games have used this in their games.

This is probably the earliest games that I can remember when I was younger which was Gex 3: Deep Cover Gecko (PS1) this was in fact the very first level that used a Christmas Theme level and this game was released back in Spring 1999 which made it 3 months too late for Christmas. However the level does feel more of a winter themed level as you break the ice in a tutorial stage and of course snowboarding down a big hill.

As a fan of the series we all knew this would happen in a Kingdom Hearts game, especially in Kingdom Hearts II (PS2) as Sora, Donald and Goofy are visiting Halloween Town again to see their friend Jack Skellington again from the first Kingdom Hearts. But the story-plot for this world follows more to the movie a little more this time round as Jack gets sick of doing the same routine every year and finds out about Christmas. Jack tells them that he's met Santa and Sora gets over-exciting to meeting him but Sora stopped caring about him years ago. But during the first and second visit Sora and his friends learn that there is more to Christmas and not just about the presents.

The Nightmare Before Christmas is my favourite film to watch around Christmas every year, I do adore most of Tim Burton's movies but this one was my favourite especially the art and animation being added in with the help of Henry Selick. I know that fans have wanted a sequel for years but however back in 2004 and 2005 Capcom released a game called The Nightmare Before Christmas: Oogies Revenge (PS2/Xbox) follows the story after the movie Jack leaves Halloween Town for a while to gather new ideas and discoveries for their next Halloween. As soon as Jack leaves town Lock, Shock and Barrel bring Oogie back to life and Halloween Town is in chaos. Oogies starts to steal everyone else’s holidays including Christmas, St Patricks, Easter and Thanksgiving and tries to become the 7th Holiday King. I actually enjoyed Oogie's Revenge for a sequel for a video game based on a movie and it even had a mix of gameplay elements of Devil May Cry and some dance attacks during boss battles.

Ok this next game is more about having Christmas music on December 25th on Gran Turismo 5 (PS3) nice idea to have especially if you do drive every day and you have this kind of music on the radio. In Gran Turismo 5 you get music like Jingle Bells, Silent Night and We Wish You a Merry Christmas kind of gets you in a mood to be jolly.

This happens in almost every Animal Crossing game in the series as soon as you get closer towards the holidays, your town will be covered in snow, building a snowman, being festive and buying a Christmas tree to place in your house. And on every December 24th a character called Jingle will appear in your town on Animal Crossing: New Leaf (3DS) he will tell you that the villagers would enjoy getting their presents of Santa. So you would have to dress up as Santa and give them their presents but the villagers will ask you what they want and it's up to you to give them the perfect present.

I'm pretty sure that Home Alone is almost everyone's every favourite Christmas movie to watch every year am I right? There are multiple versions of the game which were released on the NES, Sega Genesis and Gameboy. Each features a different style of gameplay, but all share the same plot and roughly the same objective: Kevin McCallister is left home alone when his family goes on vacation. He must prevent Harry and Marv, the "Wet Bandits", from burglarizing his home, using various household objects as traps and weapons.

Why is Folklore (PS3) on this list? Back in December 2007 on the PSN Store Downloadable Content was released which including some Christmas themed costumes and festively-themed side-quest. It maybe the holiday season, but in Doolin the mysterious events and ghostly goings-on show no signs of stopping this Folk.

First off why was this game ever released? Seriously Santa Clause Saves the Earth (PS1/GBA) was released back in 2002 just in holidays and of course a great money-grabber at the very last minute. The story for this is very straight forward and you still wonder why this game was made in the first place, Only one day left until Christmas! Little children all over the world are anxiously awaiting Santa's visit. Meanwhile, very deep underground lives a wicked fairy, Nilam. She has a magic pot that allows her to see everywhere in the world. She looked into her pot and saw Santa and his helpers packing presents for all the children and became furious that so much joy existed in the world. Nilam concocted a spell that enchanted Santa and locked him in her magic lands. You must help Santa escape the worlds controlled by Nilam, so that he can complete his Christmas Eve mission. Nearly almost every reviewer and gaming magazine gave this the lowest score ever for a video game, I don't blame them but it is one of those games that will go down in Christmas history for gaming.

Do you have any favourite games or moments based around the Christmas/Holiday Season?

Is now a very good time to be buying a PS Vita?

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With everyone talking about their favourite games for 2013 and coming towards the end of the year, 2013 has been a great year for video games. Gamespot have already been nominating and talking about their favourite games for each of the systems. I forget how awesome the PS Vita is which was just released back February 2012, during those months for the first 2012 there have been some good games for the system. Even I've managed to get my hands on picking one up almost a year ago before the Christmas holidays thanks to the Black Friday/Hot UK Deals for throwing the special offers out since then and that's including deals on other consoles and games.

After watching PS Vita Game of the Year 2013 Winner I forget how impressive the system for its touch-control and how slick the handheld console is. I've only played the demo for Tearaway and I was really impressed on how well detailed the game with everything being paper-crafted from the wonderful character animations to the outstanding visuals for its environments you can even see yourself in the game by looking at the sun thanks to the PS Rear Camera. Media Molecule know how to make good video games first we've had LittleBigPlanet and ever since the series was first released for the PS3 back in 2008 there's has been over a millions levels made by users and gamers. With Tearaway released on the PS Vita it really shows what the PS Vita can really do when it comes to games being released on the system. It actually makes me want to pick up the game myself but the real reason why I bought a PS Vita during the sales a year ago was the release of Persona 4 Golden (PS Vita) it is my all-time favourite game which was only released for the PlayStation 2 back in 2008 and 2009 for UK/Europe, Persona 4 Golden offers a ton of new features and content that wasn't in the original but have all been added in the PS Vita. Playing Persona 4 Golden on my first play-through brought me back some great moments, reuniting with old friends and hearing an amazing soundtrack again with a few new twists, you can check out my review on it- Persona 4 Golden Review

Apart from owning Persona 4 Golden on its own, when it came to ordering the PS Vita it came with a free game which turned out to be Metal Gear Solid HD Collection which is both Metal Gear Solid 2 and 3 in HD but on a handheld. Sadly this doesn't come with Metal Gear Solid Peace Walker (PSP) which was released for the PS3 and 360, the PS Vita version of the games offer the same gameplay and include the classics games Metal Gear and Metal Gear 2. And the other game I've got for free the other day after purchasing the PS3 version back in 2009 which was Flower, this turned out to be in fact a cross-play game if you've already bought it on another system and pretty much felt like good timing because Flower recently got released on the PS4 as well. Playing Flower on the PS Vita gave you two options to playing the game either by tilting the PS Vita to control the wind of speed on the flowers and holding a button or using the touch pad to control the flowers. You can read my recent review on Flower here- Flower- PS Vita Review

Unlike the PSP the PS Vita offered a second analog stick which makes it stand out better and easier to play games on the system, you would just wish Sony did this sooner before the PSP was released back in 2004. With the PS4 just around the corner you can actually use the PS Vita as a second screen which can be remotely played on a smaller screen if someone else wanted to use the TV you can switch back and forth at any time from your TV to the PS Vita, this feature has also been used for the PS3 as well. Like the PSP you can purchase and download PS1 games to your PS Vita and makes playing games a lot easier thanks to the second analog stick when it comes to most games being downloaded on the Vita. PSP games can also be played on the Vita but only if they are bought from the PSN Store which is the disappointing part about this feature because you would wonder where would the UMD discs go? With most PSP games released on the PSN Store you may find 1 or 2 odd titles not on the store and were only released on UMD two of these examples are both FFVII Crisis Core and Kingdom Hearts Birth By Sleep. If the Vita had UMD support you would keep most of your favourite games on the PSP and trade-in the PSP straight away but however most places now don't offer much when it comes to trading-in a PSP either for cash or store-credit so you are better off keeping the PSP instead.

If you are going to be buying games you’re going to need a memory-stick when it comes to playing games, like the PSP you will need one for backing-up data, downloads and system updates when it comes to picking a PS Vita but the memory sticks on their own cost even more then games themselves pending on how much GB you want for it you can get from 4GB, 8GB to a 32GB but once you've gotten a memory-stick you are pretty much sorted and ready to play some great games on the PS Vita. Most of the apps you can download on the PS Vita are free as well such as Facebook, Netflix and BBC IPlayer you can really tell that the system itself wants to be perfect as the I-Phone/I-Pad when it comes to touch-screen gaming and social-networking. Overall picking up a PS Vita is worth the purchase in the end if you are planning on buying one.

Do you own a PS Vita? Or planning on buying one in the future?

Do you have a favourite game on your PS Vita?

Nintendo we have a Wii U problem

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I might have mentioned about Nintendo's success with the Nintendo Wii a few weeks ago based on my blog- End of the 7th Generation of Gaming- Part 4 There's been news and information that the Nintendo Wii U is falling behind on sales, I already knew that Danny has already covered the topic on it on the show The Point- http://www.gamespot.com/shows/the-point/ and of course Johnny listening to everyone else's feedback from that show in the latest video on Feedbackula- http://www.gamespot.com/shows/feedbackula/

But Danny does have a point about the failure of the Wii U and its sales; the Nintendo Wii was a success because it was family-friendly and bringing friends and family together when it comes to gaming in the living room or spending that odd Christmas or Birthday with everyone. But during the 4th Generation of Gaming (1987-2003) Nintendo was up against SEGA during the 16-bit era this was a battle of the gaming consoles, SEGA had Sonic and Nintendo had Super Mario; but as we are now on the 8th Generation of Gaming Nintendo is seem to be struggling on its sales for the console market and trying to keep up with Sony and Microsoft. The Nintendo 3DS had a bit of a slow start to the beginning of launch and soon after a few more good games got released for the 3DS sales were through the roof with games like Pokémon X and Y, Professor Layton, Fire Emblem, Animal Crossing and of course Monster Hunter selling millions over in Japan.

It's already been a year since the Nintendo Wii U was released, I've played it myself at a few Nintendo events and in stores too it is a good console if you’re a hard-core gamer like myself but it still not the perfect console for everyone. Nintendo has recently released Super Mario 3D World worldwide and getting perfect scores from various magazines and websites slowly but surely the sales for both the console and Super Mario 3D World are helping Nintendo get back on their feet but they've still got a long way to go if they want to beat both Sony and Microsoft on sales. The worldwide sales are saying that Super Mario 3D World is at number 7 in the sales charts according to http://www.vgchartz.com/

I'm pretty sure that the sales for system will sell even more once Super Smash Brothers is released for both 3DS and Wii U, but apart from that Nintendo does need to do something I know that they've been showing off more gameplay and information on their next title Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze including a new playable character which is Cranky Kong during the VGX Video Games Awards 2013 they showed of some gameplay of Cranky Kong and looking a little similar to Scrooge McDuck (DuckTales) when it comes to pogo-sticking over dangerous surfaces. Plus with Super Smash Brothers along the way there's already been online petitions to getting Reggie Fils-Aime as a playable character, this might be a silly idea from the fans but if this helps the sales for Nintendo I can see why not most gamers and E3 lovers would find this funny to see.

And there have been rumours on Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask could be getting released either on the 3DS or Wii U after the mask appearing in Animal Crossing: New Leaf from the fortune cookies and the mask hanging on a wall in Link Between Worlds. Plus Skull Kid being announced as an assist trophy in Super Smash Brothers, this is yet another idea that Nintendo should think on if they want to make Zelda fans happy and gamers why not release a 3D version of Majora's Mask? This would really help the sales for the Wii U maybe or unless a Mario Galaxy 3 has been announced by the time we get to E3 2014.

I can't really see Nintendo going out of business or even becoming third-party manufacturers for other consoles it just wouldn't be right or wouldn't be the same without Nintendo. I can still see the 3DS still selling well in the future but I don't like the odds of the Wii U where it's going but hopefully after thinking through some ideas and listening to the fans Nintendo will make the right moves to be back on top.

Movie Review- Hunger Games: Catching Fire

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I would have posted my review on this sooner but during last week and the week before that I was too busy covering a blog series based on The End of the 7th Generation of Gaming and of course been busy with a few other things outside of Gamespot. But here is my movie review on Hunger Games: Catching Fire.

Hunger Games: Catching Fire

Worldwide Release- November 22nd 2013

Mins- 146 Minutes

If you've read the books or seen the first film at cinemas or on DVD, Catching Fire is the second volume in the series and picks up where it left off after the first Hunger Games. Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson) are still alive from the 74th Hunger Games. Katniss should be relieved, but now there are whispers of a rebellion against the Capitol a rebellion that Katniss and Peeta may have helped create. As the nation watches Katniss and Peeta, the stakes are higher than ever. One false move and the consequences will be unimaginable.

I've read the books before watching the movie and I did think that Catching Fire was going to be like the first film make it a little less violent and make more of a romance/action film but however Catching Fire really makes the film a lot darker and more gripping as the book was if you've read it or not, you've still got the same actors that were in the first film do make an appearance in Catching Fire such as Liam Hemsworth (Gale), Woody Harrelson (Haymitch), Elizabeth Banks (Effie) and Donald Sutherland (President Snow). But you've also got a line-up of new characters in Catching Fire and make an appearance such as Sam Claflin (Finnick), Jeffrey Wright (Beetee), Jena Malone (Johanna) and Meta Golding (Enobaria).

The director Francis Lawrence really did do a great job when it came to making Catching Fire trying to make it follow the book more and be loyal to its hard-core fans of The Hunger Games series, this film does have a lot of good moments and a few trips back down to memory lane if you've seen the first movie. They've got the right actors for each of the characters and the soundtrack is almost perfect too making it dramatic and gripping as possible if you were watching it, Catching Fire makes a ton of improvements and is highly worth watching let’s just hope that Mockingjay Part 1 and 2 will be gripping as the second film was.

4/5 (4 Stars)

I hope you've enjoyed reading my movie review :D

Super Mario 3D World Demo Impressions

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So I've recently went to the Nintendo Hand-On Tour at the Metrocentre, Newcastle a few days ago they had a variety of games at the tour event for both the Wii U and 3DS. Ended up playing a few titles such as Legend of Zelda: Link between Worlds, Sonic Lost Worlds and some Mario Kart 7.

For the Wii U managed to play quite a bit of Super Mario 3D World with a friend I went with and we both thought it was going to be a simple Mario adventure game on a Nintendo console but we were both wrong on that part. I know that there aren’t many games on the Nintendo Wii U but after playing Super Mario 3D World it makes me want to get a Wii U. The colourful graphics and stunning animation look flawless for a Nintendo game it can be hard ignore the game's power, texture and visuals for this, story seems straight forward while exploring the Mushroom Kingdom, Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach and Toad come across a strange clear pipe, which a curious green fairy-like creature, called a Sprixie, pops out of. Suddenly Bowser appears and captures the fairy before escaping through the pipe. Mario and friends enter the pipe to pursue Bowser, and find themselves in the strange new Sprixie Kingdom as they search for the Sprixie, along with some of her other companions.

When it comes to the gameplay this is where the game draws you in either play as Mario, Luigi, Toad or Peach it can be more fun playing with 2 or more players if you have friends or family with you. Like most Mario games you are reaching towards the end of the goal at each level seems straight forward collecting coins, green stars and stomping on enemies. Almost everyone's favourite including my favourite is the Cat Suit where you are dressed as a cat and can climb up walls and scratch enemies as well.

Not just that the music can be quite catchy to listen to- http://youtu.be/B0M_zZRn-yo

If I had a Wii U I would buy this game for sure but in no hurry in picking one up just yet or unless I can nab myself a paid job at any time soon.

Anyone else played Super Mario 3D World?

End of the 7th Generation of Gaming- Part 7 Final Blog

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If you've missed my last two blogs you can find them here-

I was not suspecting to get to a 7th blog based on the 7th Generation of Gaming what so ever but I've enjoyed doing blogs based around the 7th Generation of Gaming (2004-2013) there have been so many good moments and bad moments in gaming history. But during those years between 2004-2013 what have been my favourite games around that generation? It wasn't easy choosing and posting my Top 10 List on the 7th Generation, if you don't like my list everyone else has different taste and opinions on their favourite games-

10- Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep (PSP- 2010)

This was the main reason why I pretty much wanted to get a PSP in the first place after hearing the first announcement on the Kingdom Hearts series going to multiple handhelds to the DS, PSP and Mobile Phone back in 2007 at Tokyo Game Show. Seeing the first Famitsu images and the first trailer for Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep looked really impressive to look at on the PSP, as a fan of the series it’s one of those game franchises that I would follow to the end when it comes to gaming. But the story plot for this takes places 10 years before Kingdom Hearts (PS2) based around three Keyblade wielders Terra, Aqua and Ven; but Master Xehanort goes missing and everyone pretty much goes in to different directions in the story and entering other Disney world’s such as Snow White, Cinderella, Radiant Garden (Hollow Bastion) and Sleeping Beauty. The gameplay and graphics looked a little similar to what fans saw in Kingdom Hearts II (PS2) which had the same control system but set as a command deck for your attacks, magic and items and creating your own attacks and magic.

9- Demon's Souls (PS3- 2009 *2010- UK/Euro release*)

I really don't know what to say about this game first off I would say that this game is hard and I mean it’s hard to complete. You really need to know what you’re doing when it comes to Demon's Souls its more about timing and patience when it comes to fighting and encountering enemies. I liked the idea of creating your own character and choosing what skills you want to have such as Warrior, Hunter, Mage or even Knight, travelling through various worlds taking down Demons you'll travel across Castles, Dungeons, Swamps and Mines. You will die a lot and the only way to level up and gain more weapons, armour and abilities is by collecting souls if you die you lose your souls but you can reclaim them if you can reach to the last place you died but if you die before then those souls will be gone. You even had the option to invade other worlds or help another player online including leaving a message if there is something ahead. After clearing the game on my first play-through I wanted to play the game again but this my second play-through I've managed to complete the game in one sitting which was painful started from 9 am and didn't end up finishing the game around 2.45 am but it was worth it.

8- Journey (PSN- 2012)

I loved the art and concept for this game even though it was a very short game but it was worth the purchase and every penny. It was also the same with Flower (PSN) back in 2009 it was a great game for a downloadable title, Journey did feel like something out of Studio Ghibli for its artwork on its characters and animations. Wondering the sands and deserts and tapping and holding circle making sounds and tunes. Another fun part about it was sharing the same journey with other players online might to be your PSN friends but you were on a journey with a random player. Walking across the desert sands in Journey was the impressive part about this downloadable title as you progressed through your journey you come across various landscapes and environments which looks more like a game based on art.

7- The World Ends With You (DS- 2008)

Yet another that great concept of art in gaming was The World Ends With You which was released on the Nintendo DS, this really made great use of using both the top screen and bottom screen during gameplay using pins as skills for both Attack and Magic for the bottom screen and the top screen was more of using the directional pad to perform move attacks. Nomura did create the Kingdom Hearts series and most of the characters in the Final Fantasy series, he created a bunch of characters in The World Ends With You where players had to defeat certain noises and enemies in order to move forward and not getting erased within 7 Days think of Battle Royale but set in the modern day world in Japan. Another why this game was that good was the stunning Manga/Anime visuals and of the Soundtrack yet alone is worth the purchase on its own.

6- Resident Evil 4 (PS2/Cube- 2005)

This changed the concept of horror games back in 2005 Capcom released the 4th instalment in the Resident Evil series, taking after the events of Resident Evil 2 Leon Kennedy is sent to the ruthless parts of Europe where the President's daughters Ashley has been kidnapped by a Religious cult. Huge improvements were made for its gameplay set as a 3rd-person mode survival horror finding ammo at various places and not having to worry about to saving your game if you had no ink pads left. The quick time events were placed at various cutscenes and during gameplay if you weren't paying attention on the screen you can easily get killed just like that. There were quite a lot of memorable moments in Resident Evil 4 from hearing the Merchant say "Whatta you buying?" holding out inside an abandon building while enemies try to smash their way in or taking down a mutated plant.

5- BioShock Infinite (2013)

I could have easily mentioned the first BioShock as well because both games were really impressive for a First-Person Shooter in the 7th Generation which isn't Call of Duty in general. The first BioShock was set in Rapture in the 60's under the sea while BioShock Infinite's story was set in 1912 but in the Sky City of Columbia, where Booker has a debt he wants to wipe away "Bring us the girl and wipe away the debt" that is the mission you've been sent to do. As you set foot in Columbia you find out you’re the black sheep and everyone pretty much wants you dead, but when you meet Elizabeth you really start to care about her more than anything. She'll pretty much take cover while you’re taking down enemies or even help you find any health or ammo nearby which really helps especially if you've trying to clear the game on the hardest difficulty which is 1999 Mode. It was one of those games that you couldn't really put down for an FPS game the more you progressed you learn more about Elizabeth and of the ending itself really did shock everyone indeed.

4- Uncharted 2 (PS3- 2009)

Second game in the Uncharted series the sequel had a ton of improvements from the first game, for an action-adventure game this felt more of a blockbuster movie then a video game itself. Nathan Drake this time is on adventure looking for the Cintamani Stones which leads them to the path to finding Shambhala. Uncharted 2 had a lot of memorable moments including my favourite which was clearing through a wave of enemies on a moving train just like you would see in an Indiana Jones movie which really fits in well in the Uncharted series looking for treasure and lost artefacts and uncovering a hidden secret behind it. I wasn't that bothered about the multiplayer but the multiplayer made an impact for both Uncharted 2 and 3 where you can be in teams for Death matches or Co-operative missions. I'm aware that The Last of Us is Naughty Dog's best-seller and will likely win multiple awards for 2013 but most gamers and fans of the series have claimed that Uncharted 2 was the best in the series.

3- Okami (PS2- 2006 *2007- UK/Euro release*)

Once again Capcom knew how to make a good action-adventure game but this was released on the PlayStation 2 at first and then released for the Wii in 2008 and then got a HD version in 2012 for the PS3. Based on a Japanese folklore Okami is set in Nippon (Japan) you play as a white wolf named Amaterasu who knows how to defeat the eight-headed demon Orochi who has once again appeared after a 100 years from defeat. Liking a moving painting the art for Okami was impressive to look at for game being released for the PS2 back then even the gameplay had some good ideas using the miracle paintbrush to take out certain enemies and creating miracles with a stroke of that paintbrush of yours. If you've seen the movie Princess Mononoke you get the idea what I'm talking about when it comes to the game itself and the setting around it.

2- Metal Gear Solid 4 (PS3- 2008)

Everyone thought that Metal Gear Solid 4 was going to be the final game in the series based on Solid Snake, Hideo Kojima has always played a lot mind tricks and knows how to throw in a complicated story based on war. If you've been following the series like I have you will notice a lot of thing going on around the story. Metal Gear Solid 4 was shown in the past E3 and TGS shows after the first announcements of the PlayStation 3 as mentioned. After a few delays and waiting the release of Metal Gear Solid 4 was worth the wait the story had a lot emotional and memorable moments at the same time. For a stealth game you had no idea what you were going to come across including when it came to boss battles which made you think on what's the quickest way in defeating them and yes there was a lot of Easter Eggs and flash backs from the past Metal Gear Solid games.

1- Persona 4 (PS2- 2008)

You could never really find the perfect game in life but Persona 4 really much had everything you would want in a JRPG game. Set in a Japanese high school and being transferred to a small town you start to find out on the mysterious rumours on the Midnight Channel where people can see their soul mates on the TV around Midnight but however as you progress through the story you find out that students are being thrown in the TV world and it's up to you and your friends to save them within a time limit after a number of days or they will die. Persona 4 is set as a traditional role-playing game you'll go through multiple dungeons you have to use Persona's in order to defeat enemies which are like monsters which you can summon each party member has a persona, the manifestation of one's true self, that they can use in battle. Each has its own unique Skills, and a specific set of strengths and weaknesses to certain attacks. Personas gain experience from battle and learn new Skills as they gain levels. The fun part about the game is that when you’re in High School or not in the TV you can Socialise with other characters in the game this is called Social-Links where you can hang out with your friends or attend an after school club more you hang out with them your Persona's will become stronger. Not only that the story based around Persona 4 really does teach you about friendship in general and that this is more to life and having friends is something that you have to treasure.

Not just that Persona 4 has gotten more and more popular after 2008, it got released on the PlayStation Vita in 2012 with more features and extra stuff being added in. There was even an Anime series based on the story around Persona 4 which had 25 episodes and an OVA episode, it even had its own fighting game Persona 4 Arena (PS3/360) and over in Japan there have even been Live Concerts on the Persona series over in Japan every year.

I hope you've enjoyed reading my blog series based on the 7th Generation of Gaming, what have been your favourite games and memorable moments in video games between 2004-2013?