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Video Game Gift Guide 2011 RSS Feed

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Welcome to VideoGameGeek, a worldwide community of folks who love video games! To help everyone out, we've worked together to produce a list of great gift ideas for you this holiday shopping season.

With so many different gaming systems, and so many games, sometimes it's hard to keep track of what's the good purchases. As a result, find below a quick start guide to find the perfect gift for someone you know. Simply find out what gaming system they own and with a bit of knowledge of their gaming interests, we've supplied a whole matrix below of games that should be right up their street!

Previous editions of the Video Game Gift Guide: 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019,

  • The Gift Guide went on hiatus during the years 2013, 2014 and 2015.

Quick Buyers Guide Matrix

PC

Macintosh
Platform: Macintosh
Windows
Platform: Windows

Action / Adventure
- Exploring and action based


Fighting
- One-on-ones or beat-em-ups

Kids
- For the younger generation


Puzzle
- Puzzle solving and brain teasers


Racing
- Hi-speed turbo action


RPG
- Roleplaying and character leveling


Shooter
- First and third person shooters

Social
- For the family or parties

Sport
- For the sporting enthusiast


Strategy
- Wargames and management sims


Unusual
- Indie and other quirky titles


Console

PlayStation 3
Platform: PlayStation 3
Xbox 360
Platform: Xbox 360
Wii
Platform: Wii

Action / Adventure
- Exploring and action based



Fighting
- One-on-ones or beat-em-ups


Kids
- For the younger generation



Puzzle
- Puzzle solving and brain teasers



Racing
- Hi-speed turbo action



RPG
- Roleplaying and character leveling



Shooter
- First and third person shooters



Social
- For the family or parties



Sport
- For the sporting enthusiast



Strategy
- Wargames and management sims



Unusual
- Indie and other quirky titles


Handheld

3DS
Platform: Nintendo 3DS
DS
Platform: Nintendo DS
PSP
Platform: PSP

Action / Adventure
- Exploring and action based


Fighting
- One-on-ones or beat-em-ups


Kids
- For the younger generation



Puzzle
- Puzzle solving and brain teasers


Racing
- Hi-speed turbo action


RPG
- Roleplaying and character leveling


Shooter
- First and third person shooters



Social
- For the family or parties

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Sport
- For the sporting enthusiast


Strategy
- Wargames and management sims

Unusual
- Indie and other quirky titles

---

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Recommended Games List

The 3rd Birthday


Video Game: The 3rd Birthday


"Parasite Eve" and "Parasite Eve II" were classic horror RPGs back in the days of the original PlayStation. "The 3rd Birthday" brings the series into the 21st century with the first sequel in over a decade. A tactical action RPG and shooter, the player controls Aya Brea. With the ability to travel back in time and take control of other people, Aya's battles in Manhattan against the "Twisted" reveal a compelling storyline as the player explores Aya's past as much as securing the world's future.

  • Platforms: PSP
  • Genre: Action RPG
  • Theme: Horror, Science Fiction
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: CERO: D (17+), ESRB: M
  • Released: March '11

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The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn – The Game


Video Game: The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn – The Game


Based on the 2011 film of the same name, "The Secret of the Unicorn" revives the Tintin franchise for a new market. Gameplay is mostly a traditional explorative platform adventure and offers a fun and child-friendly gaming experience with combat presented in a comic book manner.

  • Platforms: 3DS, PlayStation 3, Wii, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action Adventure, Platform
  • Theme: Detective / Mystery, Movies
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: PEGI: 12+
  • Released: 21st October '11 (EU), 6th December '11 (US)

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Anno 2070


Video Game: Anno 2070


Video Game: Anno 2070


Video Game: Anno 2070


The "Anno" series has a long heritage, dating back to 1998. Traditionally the series has been based in the Early Modern historical period (1500-1700). "Anno 2070" brings the well-established city building gameplay into the near future with ecological challenges replacing the exploration of the high seas. Adding new twists to the well established series, the new title is sure to bring an innovative gameplay experience to the strategy-lover.

  • Platforms: Windows
  • Genre: Strategy, Real Time Strategy
  • Theme: Science Fiction
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: Unknown
  • Released: November '11

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Amnesia: The Dark Descent


Video Game: Amnesia: The Dark Descent


Video Game: Amnesia: The Dark Descent


Video Game: Amnesia: The Dark Descent


One of the scariest videogames of recent years, "Amnesia" is a survival horror adventure by the team behind the fantastic "Penumbra" series, Frictional Games. Relying on suspense and hidden terrors instead of jumping monsters and blood & gore, "Amnesia" has been scaring videogamers all year. If you have a horror lover in the family, this might be the ideal gift - we recommend keeping the lights on whilst playing though, if you don't want the rest of the household woken by the shrieks.

  • Platforms: Macintosh, Windows
  • Genre: Action Adventure
  • Theme: Horror
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: Not Rated
  • Released: September '10

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Assassin's Creed: Revelations


Video Game Compilation: Assassin's Creed: Revelations


Video Game Compilation: Assassin's Creed: Revelations


Video Game Compilation: Assassin's Creed: Revelations


"Assassin's Creed (Core Series)" has been one of the most well-received series on modern consoles and PCs. Combining stealth action adventure and parkour-like movement, the player controls the titular cloaked assassins in their various missions in ways that even a "Prince of Persia" fan might find familiar. The fourth game in the series, "Revelations" puts the player back in the shoes of well established characters from earlier in the series. For those that have been following the series, or even as an introduction to the series, "Revelations" is a recommended title for the stealthy videogamer.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action Adventure, Fighting
  • Theme: Folklore
  • Modes: Cooperative, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: M
  • Released: 15th November '11

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Atom Zombie Smasher


Video Game: Atom Zombie Smasher


Video Game: Atom Zombie Smasher


Video Game: Atom Zombie Smasher


Sometimes it's best when you're a little distanced from the action. Watching a zombie infestation from afar is definitely more fun than personally have your head munched. "Atom Zombie Smasher" puts the player so far away that the zombie apocalypse devestating the city makes the populace look like ants! This fun strategy title allows the indie gamer to bomb zombie hoards from afar whilst keeping gore-free hands. Try to save some of those civilians though, even if their actions are a little ... dotty.

  • Platforms: Macintosh, Windows
  • Genre: Strategy
  • Theme: Post-Apocalyptic, Zombies
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: Not Rated
  • Released: March '11
  • Review by Shameless

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Bastion


Video Game: Bastion


Video Game: Bastion


Video Game: Bastion


Vibrantly colorful, "Bastion" is an isometric action RPG in which the player controls 'The Kid', oen of the few survivors of a fantasy world that has suffered an apocalyptic 'Calamity'. Embarking on a quest to try and bring the world back from chaos, the player is taken on a journey through numerous wonderfully created environments. If you long for the days of gloriously sprite-driven animations and worlds instead of modern 3D, "Bastion" is likely to scratch an itch that few other mainstream titles will.

  • -=#@#@#=- 2011 "Best Indie Game" Golden Geek Award Nominee Finalist -=#@#@#=-
  • Platforms: Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action RPG
  • Theme: Post-Apocalyptic
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E10+, PEGI: 12+
  • Released: July '11

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Batman: Arkham City


Video Game: Batman: Arkham City


Video Game: Batman: Arkham City


Video Game: Batman: Arkham City


Based on the Batman movie franchise reboot, "Batman: Arkham Asylum" brought the new gritty masked hero to videogamers last year with great success, winning a number of awards. "Batman: Arkham City" brings more of the same to gamers this year with Batman patrolling Gotham's Mega-City in this stealthy action adventure.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action
  • Theme: Superhero
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: T, OFLC(AU): M, USK: 16
  • Released: October '11

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Battlefield 3


 Missing Image


Video Game: Battlefield 3


"Battlefield" has been one of the best established warfame FPS franchises for the last decade. Although titled "Battlefield 3", this title is the eleventh installment in the "Battlefield" franchise. Based in modern day middle eastern conflicts, the game places the player in a number of roles, ranging from frontline troop to fighter pilot. With its realistic graphics and intense gameplay, "Battlefield 3" has won much praise from followers and reviewers alike.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: First Person Shooter
  • Theme: War - Modern
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: M, PEGI: 16+
  • Released: October '11

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BlazBlue: Continuum Shift II


Video Game: BlazBlue: Continuum Shift II


Bringing the core of the original "BlazBlue: Continuum Shift" over from arcade and the consoles, "BlazBlue" is a Japanese-styled handheld fighting game. The one-on-one battles are quick and easy to learn to anyone familiar with the genre, but as always the devil is in the details. Focused onto the smaller portable handheld screen, "BlazBlue" offers quick bursts of gaming competition anywhere at the flick of a switch.

  • Platforms: 3DS, PSP
  • Genre: Fighting
  • Theme: Science Fiction
  • Modes: Local Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: T
  • Released: May '11

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de Blob 2


Video Game: de Blob 2


What would be the fun if we had to live in a world without color? Well, yet again this is the fate of the poor citizens of Prisma City. And once again, it's down to Blob and the Colour Underground to restore prismatic harmony. A fun platform puzzler, "de Blob 2" is a must have, visually appealing gameplay experience for the whole family.

  • Platforms: 3DS, DS, PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Platform, Puzzle
  • Theme: Fantasy
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E10+
  • Released: February '11

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Broken Sword: The Shadow of the Templars


Video Game: Broken Sword: Director's Cut


Video Game: Broken Sword: The Shadow of the Templars


Video Game: Broken Sword: The Shadow of the Templars


Originally released back in 1997, "The Shadow of the Templars" was wonderful adventure game. American tourist, George Stobbart, witnesses an explosion whilst visiting Paris and his investigations lead him, and beautiful journalist Nicole Collard, on a global adventure of discovery. Revitalised, Ubisoft Entertainment S.A. (Ubisoft) have brought the game to the modern market, re-releasing it for DS and Wii and letting a whole new set of gameplayers follow George's journey.

  • Platforms: DS, Wii
  • Genre: Adventure
  • Theme: Detective / Mystery
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E10+
  • Released (DS & Wii): March '09
  • Review by Mymil

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Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3


Video Game: Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3


Video Game: Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3


Video Game: Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3


Activision and Infinity Ward have been releasing "Call of Duty (Core Series)" games for almost 10 years now. The eighth release of the franchise, "Modern Warfare 3", gameplay takes place in an alternate modern setting where a Russian invasion of US is in progress and the player controls members of Task Force 141 through a number of first-person shooter missions. With this and "Battlefield 3" on the shelves, the modern war FPSer has no shortage of new games to keep him entertained.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: First Person Shooter
  • Theme: War - Modern
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: M
  • Released: November '11

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Catherine


Video Game: Catherine


An interesting combination of puzzle platformer and horror action adventure, Catherine places the player in the shoes of Vicent, a young man with concerns about his relationship with girlfriend Katherine, and new acquaintance Catherine. With a heavy Japanese influence throughout, gameplay switches between Daytime and Nightime mode offering a combination of social interation and platform puzzler. A good buy for the manga or anime lover.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action Adventure, Platform
  • Theme: Adult, Anime, Romance/Relationships
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: CERO: C (15+), ESRB: M
  • Released: February '11 (US), Q1 '12 (EU)

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Civilization V


Video Game: Civilization V


Video Game: Civilization V


Video Game: Civilization V


The fifth title in Sid Meier's multi award-winning series, "Civ V" brings a host of new features to the lover of exploring, expanding, exploiting and extermination. Controlling the development of man the prehistoric into modern day and beyond, this complex strategy game offers a great experience solo or against friends.

  • Platforms: Macintosh, Windows
  • Genre: 4x Strategy
  • Theme: Historical
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E10+, PEGI: 12+
  • Released: September '11

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Dark Souls


Video Game: Dark Souls


Spiritual seccessor to 2009's widely acclaimed "Demon's Souls (2009)", "Dark Souls" is a dungeon-crawling RPG by From Software. Focusing more on gameplay than plot, "Dark Souls" offers an enjoyable gaming experience for those that don't want to wade through pages of dialog between bashing monsters.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action RPG
  • Theme: Fantasy
  • Modes: Cooperative, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: M, PEGI: 16+
  • Released: October '11
  • Review by zinho73

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Dead Island


 Missing Image


Video Game: Dead Island


Video Game: Dead Island


Sun, sea, sand and s...zombies? Well, this doesn't look like the kind of vacation spot we were hoping for. Yes, "Dead Island" brings zombies galore to the fictional island of Banoi. With a very open world, exploration of the infested island is available to the player, even if not encouraged by holiday representatives. Presenting a slightly more serious face than the "Dead Rising" series, "Dead Island" is this season's offering for those with the need to put the living dead back where they belong.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action Adventure, First Person Shooter, RPG
  • Theme: Horror, Zombies
  • Modes: Cooperative, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: BBFC: 18, ESRB: M
  • Released: September '11

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Desktop Dungeons


Video Game: Desktop Dungeons


Video Game: Desktop Dungeons


Video Game: Desktop Dungeons


Mixing the genres of 'roguelike' RPG exploration, and single screen 'puzzle' games, "Desktop Dungeons" offer convenient bitesize chunks of old school fun. With its retro sprite-based graphic feel, and rapid play (the randomly generated dungeons completeable in under 10 minutes), casual gamers can now experience all the fun of their more serious counterparts.

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Deus Ex: Human Revolution


Video Game: Deus Ex: Human Revolution


Video Game: Deus Ex: Human Revolution


Video Game: Deus Ex: Human Revolution


The original "Deus Ex" came out in 2000 and was well praised for its gameplay. A cyberpunk action RPG / FPS game, it was a natural stepping stone for the "System Shock 2" crowd who had finished their game. The new "Deus Ex" is a prequel to the 2000 game, and with biomechanical augmentation being the technology of the day, you can be sure you'll see poor security chief Adam Jensen doing more than the bare minimum to earn his paycheck. Fighting, computer hacking, and stealth are all present here for the sneaky gamer.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: RPG, Shooter, Stealth
  • Theme: Cyberpunk
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: BBFC: 15, ESRB: M
  • Released: August '11

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Disgaea 4: A Promise Unforgotten


Video Game: Disgaea 4: A Promise Unforgotten


Just like all its predecessors, "Disgaea 4" is a Japanese grid-based tactical RPG with a heavy comedic twist. Naturally, Etna, Axel and a whole army of prinnies are bound to appear at some point, and all the familiar staples of the series are present (such as towering and throwing team members around), but a few new possiblities will need to be catered for in your strategies now. If you know someone who's a fan of light-hearted demonic melodrama, you should totally get this, dood!

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3
  • Genre: Tactical RPG
  • Theme: Anime, Fantasy
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: CERO: A (All ages), ESRB: T
  • Released: February '11

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Donkey Kong Country Returns


Video Game: Donkey Kong Country Returns


Remember "Donkey Kong Country" on Super Nintendo? Retro Studios has brought it back, but this time it's for the Wii and this time it's in 3D. While Donkey Kong explores both new and familiar levels, the other player doesn't have to sit back and watch. The Wii version allows a second player to play Diddy Kong at the same time, exploring levels together or apart, or even having Diddy ride on Donkey Kong's back to rely on him to face the harder challenges - an attractive option for co-operative play for siblings of different ages or parents with younger children.

  • Platforms: Wii
  • Genre: Platform
  • Theme: Cute Fantasy, Jungle
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E
  • Released: October '10

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Dragon Age II


Video Game: Dragon Age II


Video Game: Dragon Age II


Video Game: Dragon Age II


Sequel to the highly rated "Dragon Age: Origins" from 2009, BioWare show once more that they are one of the leading names in RPG development. Taking the primary character, Hawke, from poor refugee to Champion of Kirkwall, players will be presented with a wide range of quests, the epxected combats, whilst also developing relationships with the various party members. With the odd familiar face appearing from the original, "Dragon Age II" is a good RPG title for those new or familiar with the series.

  • Platforms: Macintosh, PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: RPG
  • Theme: Fantasy
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: M, PEGI: 18+
  • Released: March '11
  • Review by Colonial One

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Dragon Quest VI: Realms of Reverie


Video Game: Dragon Quest VI: Realms of Reverie


Originally devleoped for the SNES in 1995 and released only in Japan, "Realms of Reverie" has been giving a dramatic polishing and presented to the west for the first time on the DS. With DS RPGers already familiar with the "Dragon Quest" series from last year's release of "Dragon Quest IX: Sentinels of the Starry Skies", this new re-release should scratch an itch for many gamers and help shed some light on some of the series' origins.

  • Platforms: DS
  • Genre: RPG
  • Theme: Fantasy
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: CERO: A (All ages), ESRB: T
  • Released (DS): January '10

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Driver San Francisco


Video Game: Driver San Francisco


Video Game: Driver San Francisco


Video Game: Driver San Francisco


The sixth game in the "Driver" series, "Driver San Francisco" brings us the next installment of mission-based driving. With crime lord Charles Jericho on the loose, only John Tanner, manhunter and driver extraordinaire, can help the citizens of San Francisco sleep easy at night. Car chases, high speed pursuits... expect to see it all. A must-buy for fans of this style of driving game, especially those unable to satisfy their "Grand Theft Auto (Core Series)" fix this year.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Simulation
  • Theme: Driving
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: T, PEGI: 12+
  • Released: September '11
  • Review by Bullseye71

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Dungeon Defenders


Video Game: Dungeon Defenders


Video Game: Dungeon Defenders


Video Game: Dungeon Defenders


"Dungeon Defenders" is a Tower Defense game crossed with an Action-RPG. You control a hero from one of 4 classes, along with up to 3 other players, in co-op mode. Use mana to build defensive towers in the path of the advancing Orcs and other enemies. Collect loot to improve the abilities of your character and towers. As your character progresses you'll be able to play on various difficulty settings, and in different modes, like challenge or survival.

  • Platforms: Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action RPG, Tower Defense
  • Theme: Fantasy, Medieval
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E10+
  • Released: October '11

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Dungeons of Dredmor


Video Game: Dungeons of Dredmor


Video Game: Dungeons of Dredmor


Video Game: Dungeons of Dredmor


A humorous turn-based roguelike dungeon crawler, "Dungeons of Dredmor" offers all the standard fair expected with this genre, but with a glossy cartoonish graphical style. With randomly generated levels filled with enemies, loot and traps, the player has the choice of a variety of character skills, opening up the game for a lot of replayability.

  • Platforms: Macintosh, Windows
  • Genre: Roguelike, RPG
  • Theme: Fantasy
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: Not Rated
  • Released: July '11

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The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim


Video Game: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim


Video Game: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim


Video Game: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim


The High King of Skyrim has been murdered and bloody war ravages the Empire. However, being a prisoner heading off to be executed, the player has his own problems. A dramatic escape, dragon fights, and a fantastic world to be explored are but the tip of the iceberg for this epic RPG. The fifth of Bethesda Game Studios's "The Elder Scrolls (Core Series)" series, this outing sees a whole new rendering engine giving more amazing sights than ever before.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: RPG
  • Theme: Fantasy
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: BBFC: 15, ESRB: M, OFLC(AU): MA15+
  • Released: November '11
  • Review by MasterGeek

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F1 2011


Video Game: F1 2011


Video Game: F1 2011


Video Game: F1 2011


Live the life of a Formula 1 racing driver in this year's release of Codemasters's "Formula One" series. With all new circuits, day and night racing, and a focus on multiplayer gameplay, compete against all the real teams and drivers from Formula 1 racing. With unprecendented realism, this game is sure to take the pole.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Racing, Simulation
  • Theme: Driving
  • Modes: Cooperative, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E
  • Released: September '11

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Fallout: New Vegas


 Missing Image


Video Game: Fallout: New Vegas


Video Game: Fallout: New Vegas


The world of "Fallout" is not a forgiving place. A post-apocalyptic wasteland teaming with a multitude of mutations, life is hard. This time round, our action takes place in the Mojave Desert. With food and drink in scarce supply, and various factions struggling for control of the surrounding area, being a courier can be a difficult job. When a package is stolen and the player's left for dead, a journey of revenge and exploration commences that leads to a number of different endings.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action RPG
  • Theme: Post-Apocalyptic, Science Fiction
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: BBFC: 18, ESRB: M, OFLC(AU): MA15+, PEGI: 18+
  • Released: October '10
  • Review by derk

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FIFA Soccer 12


Video Game: FIFA Soccer 12


Electronic Arts Inc. (EA) have been the premiere publisher for football (soccer) playing games for almost two decades. This year's "FIFA" outing brings an advanced physics engine, better defending, and an advanced dribbling system. All in all, "FIFA Soccer 12" is the best on-pitch football game yet!

  • Platforms: 3DS, PlayStation 3, PSP, Wii, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Sports
  • Theme: Soccer
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E
  • Released: September '11

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Final Fantasy IV: The Complete Collection



Bringing yet more of the "Final Fantasy XIV" series onto the PSP, this year we see "Final Fantasy IV" and its follow-up made available to handheld gamers. With "IV" being one of the highest rated of the "Final Fantasy" titles, this is a satisfying compilation to see hit the shelves for PSP owners everywhere.

  • Platforms: PSP
  • Genre: RPG
  • Theme: Fantasy
  • Modes: Single-PLayer
  • Age Rating: CERO: A (All ages), ESRB: E10+, OFLC(AU): PG, PEGI: 12+
  • Released: March '11

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Football Manager 2012


Video Game: Football Manager 2012


Video Game: Football Manager 2012


Video Game: Football Manager 2012


Representing clubs from 50 nations around the world, "Football Manager 2012" continues the tradition of football team management. Focused on the off-pitch decisions of managing a football (soccer) club, finance management, hiring, handling the media, training, match preparation, and getting the best out of your players is all under the player's control.

  • Platforms: Macintosh, PSP, Windows
  • Genre: Simulation, Sports
  • Theme: Soccer
  • Modes: Hotseat, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E, PEGI: 3+
  • Released: October '11

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Forza Motorsport 4


Video Game: Forza Motorsport 4


"Forza Motorsport" is often praised for its graphical engine, as well as real-world car and track simulations. Multiplayer racing has been enhanced to support 16 players now, instead of the 8 available in previous versions of the game, but all the racing modes remain. With spot appearances from presenters and tracks from the BBC "Top Gear" series, this year's release will undobutedly appeal to casual and series fans of high-powered cars alike.

  • Platforms: Xbox 360
  • Genre: Racing
  • Theme: Driving
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: CERO: A (All ages), ESRB: E, PEGI: 3+
  • Released: October '11

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Frozen Synapse


Video Game: Frozen Synapse


Video Game: Frozen Synapse


Video Game: Frozen Synapse


"Frozen Synapse" is a top-down tactical shooter set in a virtual world as players plan out the next five seconds of action, giving their units commands then watching it play out. Players will have to take into account the unit types, aiming, movement and cover if they wish to succeed in combat and achieve the variety of objectives, such as eliminating the other team, protecting a companion or gaining contol of a location. "Frozen Synapse" offers both an extensive single player mode and 1v1 multiplayer.

  • Platforms: Macintosh, Windows
  • Genre: Strategy
  • Theme: Abstract, Military, War - Future
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: Not Rated
  • Released: May '11
  • Review by abodi

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Gears of War 3


Video Game: Gears of War 3


Continuing the storyline of the previous "Gears of War" titles, "Gears of War 3" sees the human survivors on the planet Sera taking up arms once again against a threat even more dangerous than the Locust. As with the previous titles though, as much of the fun in this new version comes from the multiplayer modes as single-player campaign, "Gears of War" still retaining its position as a premier Xbox 360 multiplayer third-person shooter series.

  • Platforms: Xbox 360
  • Genre: Shooter
  • Theme: Aliens, Post-Apocalyptic, Science Fiction
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: BBFC: 18, ESRB: M
  • Released: September '11

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Halo: Reach


Video Game: Halo: Reach


Video Game: Halo: Reach


Video Game: Halo: Reach


The fourth in the main series of "Halo" titles, and the last to be created by the original developer, Bungie, Inc.. The game takes place in the year 2552, prior to the setting of "Halo: Combat Evolved", and focuses on Noble Team, a UNSC spec ops team. Following on in the successful footsteps of its predecessors "Halo: Reach" is a 'must have' for any Xbox 360 owner.

  • Platforms: Xbox 360
  • Genre: First Person Shooter
  • Theme: Aliens, Science Fiction, War - Future
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: M, USK: 18
  • Released: September '10
  • Review by cvlw

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Heavy Rain


Video Game: Heavy Rain


Video Game: Heavy Rain


Video Game: Heavy Rain


Quantic Dream (developers behind the innovative adventure games, "Omikron: The Nomad Soul" and "Indigo Prophecy") has released its third unusual offering in the form of "Heavy Rain". A mature moral investigative thriller, the player is placed in not one set of shoes, but four. With the Origami Killer having kidnapped the son of Ethan Mars, the player must try to unravel the various cryptic clues through the eyes of four different protagnists throughout the game. Can the missing child be found and culprit brought to justice? With a Quantic Dreams game, I wouldn't make any bets...

  • -=#@#@#=- 2011 "Most Innovative Game" Golden Geek Award Nominee Finalist -=#@#@#=-
  • Platforms: PlayStation 3
  • Genre: Adventure
  • Theme: Crime, Moral Choices
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: BBFC: 15, CERO: D (17+), ESRB: M
  • Released: February '10
  • Review by Huggable Zombie

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Just Dance 3


Video Game: Just Dance 3


"Just Dance" is back with a new Quartet Dance Crew mode. The solo and duet options are still available with new songs from Rihanna and Katy Perry to Daft Punk and The Buggles. Rewards include other moves, songs, and dance mashups that combine moves from Just Dance 1 and 2. An Xbox 360 Kinect peripheral allows self-made dance routines in the 'Just Create' mode. For Wii users, there are special 'Shuffle' modes and the opportunity to download an extra 4 songs.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Rhythm
  • Theme: Dancing
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E10+
  • Released: October '11

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Just Dance Kids 2



Ubisoft Entertainment S.A. (Ubisoft) brings its "Just Dance" series to the younger market once more with "Just Dance Kids 2". With 40 all-new dances available, a wide array of songs from high-rated kids shows and movies, the game is a sure-fire hit for kids parties, sing-alongs or anyone with a family that wants to do more than just press some buttons during their gaming time.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Rhythm
  • Theme: Dancing, Children's
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E, PEGI: 3+
  • Released: October '11

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Kinect: Disneyland Adventures



With almost 100 hours of gameplay, "Kinect: Disneyland Advenures" brings Disney's Californian resort to the Xbox 360. With the ability to explore the park and experience all the iconic attractions, a host of collectables are present for the explorers of the family, whilst everyone else can simply enjoy the experience of a real amusement park brought into the living room.

  • Platforms: Xbox 360
  • Genre: Adventure
  • Theme: Amusement Park, Children's
  • Modes: Cooperative, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: CERO: A (All ages), ESRB: E10+, OFLC(AU): PG, PEGI: 7+
  • Released: November '11

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Kinect Sports Season Two



Utilising Microsoft Game Studios' Kinect hardware, "Kineect Sports Season Two" offers 6 new sports to the Xbox 360 owner: golf, darts, baseball, skiing, tennis and American football. Being able to play all these games without the need to be holding a controller of any type results in a new and novel gaming experience. Good for burning off a little of that afternoon lunch.

  • Platforms: Xbox 360
  • Genre: Sports
  • Theme: Baseball, Football, Golf, Skiing, Tennis
  • Modes: Local Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E
  • Released: October '11

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L.A. Noire


Video Game Compilation: L.A. Noire


Rockstar Games brings film noir detective to its videogame fans this year, with its cinematic offering, "L.A. Noire". Based in 1940's Los Angeles, the game follows the career progression of police officer Cole Phelps. Moving from bureau to bureau, Phelps is set to investigate a number of crimes, interrogating suspects and collecting clues whilst occasionally finding himself engaged in car chases and gunfights. A distinct break from Rockstar usual fare, "L.A. Noire" introduces an intriguing new twist to the crime / mystery genre.

  • -=#@#@#=- 2011 "Best Visuals/Artwork" Golden Geek Award WINNER! -=#@#@#=-
  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action Adventure, Sandbox, Shooter
  • Theme: Crime, Detective / Mystery
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: BBFC: 18, ESRB: M, PEGI: 18+
  • Released: May '11
  • Review by MasterGeek

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The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time


Video Game: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time


One of the most popular "The Legend of Zelda" of all time, "Ocarina of Time" sees a re-relased this year for the 3DS. Whilst gameplay stays relatively faithful to the original, a number of enhancements have been applied which made the game a little easier and more intuitive on the handheld device (primary among these being easier equipment changing - a boon in places like the Water Temple). A very polished title, "Ocarina" is one of the must have titles for the 3DS for fans new and old to the "Zelda" series.

  • Platforms: 3DS
  • Genre: Action Adventure
  • Theme: Fantasy
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E10+
  • Released: June '11
  • Review by penroff4

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The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword


Video Game: The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword


The sixteenth title in the ever-popular "The Legend of Zelda (Core Series)" action-adventure series, "Skyward Sword" is a chronological prequel to "The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time". When Zelda is whisked away in a storm, it's up to our hero, Link, to save her. Whilst a number of Zelda titles have been made available for the Wii, these have been updates or virtual versions from previous consoles - "Skyward Sword" sees the first game truly tailored for the console, and the result has been critical accliam from every corner. A must buy this season!

  • Platforms: Wii
  • Genre: Action Adventure
  • Theme: Fantasy
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: CERO: A (All ages), ESRB: E10+, PEGI: 12+
  • Released: November '11

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LEGO Harry Potter: Years 5-7


Video Game: LEGO Harry Potter: Years 5-7


Sequel to last year's "LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4 (Console/PC)", "Years 5-7" brings the familiar "LEGO" action adventure gameplay to the final books of the "Harry Potter" series. Expect magic, exploding blocks, dementors and interchangeable bodyparts, as well as encounters with He Who Must Not Be Named. Will Harry and friends prevail? It's likely isn't it, but the adventure will be fun and there will be lots of secrets to find along the way.

  • Platforms: 3DS, DS, PlayStation 3, PSP, Wii, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action Adventure
  • Theme: Children's, Fantasy
  • Modes: Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E
  • Released: November '11

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LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean: The Video Game


Video Game: LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean: The Video Game


Yo-ho-ho, and a bottle of ... "LEGO"? Yes, the LEGO Movie franchsie has moved onto the ever popular "Pirates of the Caribbean" series this year. With Captain Jack Sparrow leading the way, we can be sure that those sword-wielding, swashbuckling pirates will cause more than their fair share of exploding scenery and mayhem. With lots of secrets to be found and areas to explore, just remember one thing. Do Not Burn THE RUM!

  • Platforms: 3DS, DS, Macintosh, PlayStation 3, PSP, Wii, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action Adventure
  • Theme: Movies, Pirates
  • Modes: Local Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E, OFLC(AU): PG
  • Released: May '11

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Limbo


Video Game: Limbo


Video Game: Limbo


Video Game: Limbo


While a lot of controls in "Limbo" will be familiar to your average platform player (running, jumping, climbing, pushing/pulling objects), it really is the artistic style of this game that makes it stand out from the norm. Completely rendered in a grayscale silhouette style with minimalist and haunting audio, we're made to focus on the fragility of the young boy we're controlling and the epic puzzles that are presented to him as he tries to find out what has happened to his missing sister. A very iconic title that you simply wouldn't see outside of indie development.

  • -=#@#@#=- 2011 "Best Indie Game" Golden Geek Award Nominee Finalist -=#@#@#=-
  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Adventure, Puzzle
  • Theme: Morbid
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: T
  • Released: July '11
  • Review from slowcorner

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LittleBIGPlanet 2


Video Game: LittleBIGPlanet 2


Sackboy and friends are back! With gameplay similar to its predecessor, 2.5D platforming fun has been given a new life for up to 4 players in "LittleBIGPlanet 2". With its extensive level designer and customization options, a host of user-generated content expands upon what you get out of the box, offering countless hours of light-hearted fun.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3
  • Genre: Platform, Puzzle
  • Theme: Cute Fantasy
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E, PEGI: 7+
  • Released: January '11

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Madden NFL 12


Video Game: Madden NFL 12


The newest Madden version from EA Sports lets you choose from twenty-five more plays than before and run them from the roles of quarterback to linebacker. New rules for possibly-concussed players and 35 yard line kick-offs reflect newest changes in the NFL. As well, onside kicks can now be made from a regular kick formation, and there is a wider free agency in franchise mode - even draft pick trades. But with all this detail, anyone can start with simple play calls, letting the AI take over as much or as little as you want.

  • Platforms: 3DS, PlayStation 3, PSP, Wii, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Sports
  • Theme: Football
  • Modes: Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E, PEGI: 3+
  • Released: August '11

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Mario Kart 7


Video Game: Mario Kart 7


This year sees "Mario Kart" come to the 3DS. All the regular characters are here, but now there's kart customization (including hang-glider attachments) and underwater racing in the mix too! Allowing up to 8 players to race against each other, the "Mario Kart 7" is going to be a surefire hit for 3DS owners.

  • Platforms: 3DS
  • Genre: Racing
  • Theme: Cute Fantasy
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: Unknown
  • Released: December '11

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Mass Effect 2


Video Game: Mass Effect 2


Video Game: Mass Effect 2


Video Game: Mass Effect 2


Although originally released in January 2010, "Mass Effect 2" saw its PlayStation 3 debug earlier this year. Whatever platform you're playing on though, you're once again thrown into the boots of Commander Shepard. With human colonies disappearing across the galaxy, is there anything Shepard and the crew of the starship Normandy can do to prevent our extermination? Buying the game for someone is the only way to find out! Well, that or Wikipedia.

  • -=#@#@#=- 2011 "Game of the Year" Golden Geek Award Nominee Finalist -=#@#@#=-
  • -=#@#@#=- 2011 "Best Visuals/Artwork" Golden Geek Award Nominee Finalist -=#@#@#=-
  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action RPG, RPG
  • Theme: Aliens, Moral Choices, Science Fiction, Space
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: BBFC: 15, ESRB: M, PEGI: 18+
  • Released: January '10
  • Review by StormShadow

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Might & Magic Heroes VI


Video Game: Might & Magic Heroes VI


"Heroes of Might & Magic VI" continues the good tradition of the "Might and Magic" series, as a turn-based strategy game in the wellknown fantasy universe. This time, it involves a mix of familiarity and new innovation, including boss fights, a town conversion functionality, and a new reputation system. A prequel to the main campaigns of "Heroes of Might and Magic V", it takes place four centuries earlier in the world of Ashan. A great continuation of this well-established fantasy strategy series.

  • Platforms: Windows
  • Genre: Strategy
  • Theme: Fantasy
  • Modes: Hotseat, Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: PEGI: 16+, USK: 12
  • Released: September '11

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Minecraft


Video Game: Minecraft


User: Omega2064


User: banyan


A construction kit sandbox on your computer. In "Minecraft" players mine and hunt for minerals and components. These base components can then be combined in a multitude of ways, and like a mass of Lego bricks, where the players goes there is up to them. Whether it's crafting weapons and armor to fend off skeletons whilst exploring underground, gathering stone and wood to build a magnificent fortress, or building a rollercoaster across the landscape, the possibilities are endless.

  • -=#@#@#=- 2011 "Best Indie Game" Golden Geek Award WINNER! -=#@#@#=-
  • -=#@#@#=- 2011 "Most Innovative Game" Golden Geek Award WINNER! -=#@#@#=-
  • Platforms: Macintosh, Windows
  • Genre: Action/Adventure, Sandbox
  • Theme: Fantasy
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: Not Rated
  • Released: May '09
  • Review by Omega2064, Play by Kodeir

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ModNation Racers


Video Game: ModNation Racers


As you might guess from the title, "ModNation Racers" is just as much about the modding as it is about the racing. A kart racing game at its core, "ModNation" offers a massive amount of customization for characters, vehicles and even racetracks. With a slightly 'retro toy' styling, the game has a light and charming appeal, whether player single-player or multi-player (wireless on PSP; online on PS3).

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, PSP
  • Genre: Racing
  • Theme: Driving
  • Modes: Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E, OFLC(AU): G, PEGI: 7+, USK: 6
  • Released: May '10

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Mortal Kombat (2011)


Video Game: Mortal Kombat (2011)


Practically 20 years old now, the "Mortal Kombat" series is one of the longest established and well recognized fighting games. This year sees the ninth installment of the series brought onto consoles. With tag-team fighting, online modes, and even a Challenge Tower mode (presenting 300 specific challenges to the gamer), there's a whole lot more here than in the earlier titles, but fans familiar with the side-on one-on-one style gaming will find the game familiar instantly.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Fighting
  • Theme: Martial Arts
  • Modes: Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: M
  • Released: April '11
  • Review by VirtualAlex

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NBA 2K12



This year's basketball release from 2K Sports, Inc. sees the addition of significant features new feature to its line-up of gameplay modes: 'NBA Greatest' mode brings iconics basketball from modern day and the past into play, allowing these legends to be pitched against any team of the player's choosing. Also integrating with the PlayStation Move for the first time in the series' history, "NBA 2K12" is a slam dunk success.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Sports
  • Theme: Bastketball
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E
  • Released: October '11

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Need for Speed: The Run



Indebted to a crime syndicate, you're given the opportunity to win "$25,000,000" - how could anything possibly go wrong there!? Yes, "Need for Speed: The Run" puts you behind the wheel in an attempt to win your freedom, and preserve your life. Although story-driven, let's face it - it's all about the racing. And there's a whole host of street tracks you'll be speeding down, harassed by police and criminals alike. With the "Need for Speed" series having been around for over 15 years, we know we're in for a good time here.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Racing
  • Theme: Driving
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: T
  • Released: November '11

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NHL 12


Video Game: NHL 12


This year's release for EA Sports' "NHL" series sees a number of new features: goalie contact, improved physics, improved trading mechanics, and the ability to play several seasons in the Canadian Hockey League. For the ice hockey enthusiast who enjoys playing the game from the warmth of home, there simply is no alternative.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Management, Sports
  • Theme: Hockey
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E10+, PEGI: 3+
  • Released: September '11

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Patapon 3



In the third game of the PSP's "Patapon" series, the player is once more placed in the role of god of the Patapon people. As before, rhythmic drumbeats guide the tribe to victory in this action adventure as the player searches for Patapolis, a place of legend. With new warriors and heroes at your disposal, the little chanting tribe is even more unstoppable this time round.

  • Platforms: PSP
  • Genre: Real Time Strategy, Rhythm
  • Theme: Cartoon
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: CERO: A (All ages), ESRB: E, PEGI: 7+
  • Released: April '11

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Pilotwings Resort


Video Game: Pilotwings Resort


Video Game: Pilotwings Resort


Video Game: Pilotwings Resort


The original "Pilotwings" game was released for the SNES in 1990. Now, after a break of 15 years, "Pilotwings Resort" brings the series back to the 3DS. With the aid of plane, rocket belt and hang glider, the player has a number of ways to explore Wuhu Island from the air. Both a 'Free Flight Mode' is available, as well as 'Mission Flight Mode' where the places races against the clock to complete a wide variety of objectives. Taking full advantage of the 3D perspective capable on the device, "Pilotswings Resort" makes casual flying fun again.

  • Platforms: 3DS
  • Genre: Flight Simulator
  • Theme: Flight
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E
  • Released: March '11

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Pokémon Black and White


Video Game: Pokémon Black and White


Video Game: Pokémon Black and White


The latest installment of the Pokemon franchise follows a young trainer through the region of Unova as they endeavour to become a Master Trainer. Black and White boast over 150 new Pokemon as well as the new Triple Battle feature. Can you become a Poke-Master?

  • Platforms: DS
  • Genre: RPG
  • Theme: Cartoon, Cute Fantasy
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: CERO: A (All Ages), ESRB: E, PEGI: 3+
  • Released: September '11
  • Review from TMVM

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Portal 2


Video Game: Portal 2


Video Game: Portal 2


Video Game: Portal 2


Following up on the unexpected smash hit that was "Portal (2007)"? Not an easy job, but somehow Valve Corporation managed it. "Portal 2" is a physics-based puzzler with a great scifi story based in the testing facility of Aperature Industries. Compared to "Portal", "Portal 2" is a lot more forgiving: there's no tricky jumps and the puzzles are complex but never evil. Which makes it the ideal buy for your puzzle-loving friends.

  • -=#@#@#=- 2011 "Game of the Year" Golden Geek Award WINNER! -=#@#@#=-
  • -=#@#@#=- 2011 "Most Innovative Game" Golden Geek Award Nominee Finalist -=#@#@#=-
  • Platforms: Macintosh, PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Platform, Puzzle
  • Theme: Science Fiction
  • Modes: Cooperative, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E10+, PEGI: 12+
  • Released: April '11
  • Review from Zimeon

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Radiant Historia


Video Game: Radiant Historia


"Radiant Historia" is a strategic JRPG set in the fantasy world of Vainguer, a land engulfed in a war between the nations of Alistel and Granorg. The entire world is slowly becoming a desert, and each country fights for what little habitable land remains. When intelligence officer Stocke is defeated and almost killed by one of Granorg's commanders, he is saved by a mysterious artifact known as the White Chronicle, which transports him to a realm where he discovers how to travel forward or back in time. Do you know a DS gamer who might be able to set the timeline straight and make the world a better place?

  • Platforms: DS
  • Genre: RPG
  • Theme: Fantasy, Medieval
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: CERO: B (12+)
  • Released: November '10

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Rage (2011)


 Missing Image


Video Game: Rage (2011)


Video Game: Rage (2011)


After an asteroid impact turns the world in a ravaged wasteland, bandit gangs and mutant hordes now plague the scraps of civilization left behind. Waking up from an unearthed life support port, the player has free realm to explore this devestating vision of the future. With a range of weapons and vehicles at your disposal, and an Authority that seems far too interested in your existence, this shooter / adventure presents a world of immersive danger. A good purchase to buy in combination with "Fallout: New Vegas".

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: First Person Shooter
  • Theme: Science Fiction
  • Modes: Cooperative, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: M
  • Released: October '11

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Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One


 Missing Image


Video Game: Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One


Video Game: Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One


Doctor Nefarious is never one to spend a quiet day of contemplation. When his latest evil plan backfires, catapulting himself, Ratchet, Clank and Captain Qwark into peril, the four must work together to get back home. Following the familiar platform action adventuring mechanics from the previous "Ratchet & Clank" titles, this PS3 exclusive opens up a 4-player cooperative mode that's fun for all the family.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3
  • Genre: Action Adventure
  • Theme: Cartoon, Comedy, Science Fiction
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E10+
  • Released: October '11

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Red Dead Redemption


Video Game: Red Dead Redemption


Video Game: Red Dead Redemption


Video Game: Red Dead Redemption


The spritial successor to Rockstar Games' 2004 hit, "Red Dead Revolver", "Red Dead Redemption" brings us back to the old west with a bang. Retired outlaw, John Marston, is taken from his family and recruited to hunt down the remaining members of his old gang. Of course, things are never that simple, and with a widely explorable open world available, this third person shooter / action adventure sees our protagonist's gun-slinging story roaming through a number of areas and missions on its winding tale of redemption.

  • -=#@#@#=- 2011 "Game of the Year" Golden Geek Award Nominee Finalist -=#@#@#=-
  • -=#@#@#=- 2011 "Best Visuals/Artwork" Golden Geek Award Nominee Finalist -=#@#@#=-
  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action Adventure, Shooter
  • Theme: Moral Choices, Western
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: M, OFLC(AU): MA15+, PEGI: 18+
  • Released: May '10
  • Review by Huggable Zombie

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Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D



The "Resident Evil (Core Series)" series makes its way onto the 3DS, and to great effect. As always, "The Mercenaries" throws the player into a world of marauding zombies and mutants. With both third and fist person views available and a suite of new features which should make zombie dodging a little easier, the game has been well tailored for the smaller handheld device, making good use of both screens. Good for the gameplayer who still hasn't shaken that brain-eating Halloween feeling.

  • Platforms: 3DS
  • Genre: Action Adventure, Shooter
  • Theme: Horror, Zombies
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: M
  • Released: June '11

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Resistance: Retribution


Video Game: Resistance: Retribution


Set after the events of "Resistance: Fall of Man", this third-person shooter is naturally set in the "Resistance" universe. The player takes control of a British agent who joins with the French resistance to help fight back the chimera invasion. With a number of multiplayer modes, "Retribution" puts the handheld users back up against the alien menace once more.

  • Platforms: PSP
  • Genre: Action, Shooter
  • Theme: Aliens, Alternate Historical, Science Fiction
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: M
  • Released: March '09

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Ridge Racer 3D



One of the 3DS' launch titles, "Ridge Racer" brings classic arcade racing action to the handheld. Playing either single player or against friends via a wireless connection, the game offers a number of gaming modes as the players drift their nitro-fueled speed machines through a wide range of street courses.

  • Platforms: 3DS
  • Genre: Racing
  • Theme: Driving
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E
  • Released: March '11

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Rune Factory: Tides of Destiny



A JRPG for the PlayStation 3 and Wii, "Rune Factory: Tides of Destiny" combines role-playing, sailing, exploration, farming and relationship building in this continuation of the "Rune Factory" series. Taking the gentler fantasy storyline route of the "Harvest Moon (Original)" series, the game is a little more kid and family friendly than most RPGs, steering away from the buckets of blood and presenting a more sedate and innocent world to explore.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Wii
  • Genre: Action RPG
  • Theme: Fantasy, Romance / Relationships
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: CERO: A (All ages), ESRB: E10+
  • Released: February '11

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Saints Row: The Third


Video Game: Saints Row: The Third


Video Game: Saints Row: The Third


Video Game: Saints Row: The Third


An open world, action adventure game, "The Third" continues the "Saints Row" storyline. With 'The Saints' having blossomed from a street gang to a huge media empire, the gang should be set for life. But after a botched bankjob, the Saints are thrown back to their roots, and its there that the fun begins once again. Gang warfare and high speed driving are the name of the game, and those familiar with the "Grand Theft Auto (Core Series)" series will see a slightly crazier version of the gameplay they'll be missing this year.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action Adventure, Sandbox
  • Theme: Crime
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: BBFC: 18, CERO: Z (18+), ESRB: M, USK: 18
  • Released: November '11

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Sanctum


Video Game: Sanctum


Video Game: Sanctum


Video Game: Sanctum


Ever played a Tower Defense game and wondered what it would be like to be in amongst the action?? Well "Sanctum" gives you the opportunity to find out, seemlessly combining Tower Defense with First Person Shooter. Play single-player, or co-op multiplayer as a team of up to 4 players. Build powerful defensive towers and upgrade your weapons during building mode, then face off against the advancing enemies in extermination mode. Sanctum is a great value for money indie game, based on the Unreal 3 engine, with high quality graphics and gameplay.

  • Platforms: Windows
  • Genre: First Person Shooter, Tower Defense
  • Theme: Science Fiction
  • Modes: Cooperative, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: Not Rated
  • Released: April '11
  • Review by Grimwold

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Scoregasm


Video Game: Scoregasm


Video Game: Scoregasm


Video Game: Scoregasm


"Scoregasm" is a unique top-down shoot-em-up. Each level is played in a small, confined 2D shape, where waves of enemies come from various corners and edges. Your ship fires constantly and you have a limited radius blast weapon you can also use, and there are arcade style power ups too. Levels are linked by branching paths, so completing a level will often open up 2 or more levels for you to choose from in order to progress.

  • Platforms: Macintosh, Windows
  • Genre: Shoot 'em Up
  • Theme: Science Fiction, Space
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: Not Rated
  • Released: October '11

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Sid Meier's Pirates! (2004)


Video Game: Sid Meier's Pirates! (2004)


Video Game: Sid Meier's Pirates! (2004)


 Missing Image


"Pirates" has undergone a number of re-makes and re-releases since its original release in 1987. This year sees the game brought to the Wii. Sailing the seven seas is never an any business - naval fighting, trading, sword fighting, stealth, randsoms, even land battles - a pirate's life is never quiet. For those looking for a little strategy mixed with their pirating, "Sid Meier's Pirates" still stands the test of time.

  • Platforms: Macintosh, PSP, Wii, Windows
  • Genre: Sandbox, Strategy
  • Theme: Historical, Pirates
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E
  • Released (Wii): October '10

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The Sims 3


Video Game: The Sims 3


Video Game: The Sims 3


Although the original "Sims 3" is almost 2 years old now, it's still a popular buy because of its ever-increasing list of expansion packs. This year has seen the release of "The Sims 3: Generations", "The Sims 3: Town Life Stuff" and "The Sims 3: Pets"! And that's ignoring the new spin-off series "The Sims Medieval". Following and controlling the lives of Sims has never been so full of possibilities!

  • Platforms: Macintosh, PlayStation 3, Windows, Wii, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Life Simulation
  • Theme: Romance / Relationships
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: T, PEGI: 12+, USK: 6
  • Released: June '09

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Sonic Generations


Video Game: Sonic Generations


What's better than one Sonic? Two Sonics, of course! "Generations" sees both Classic and Modern versions of Sonic as time-holes put modern day Sonic and friends back into the past. Relive iconic environments and meet old friends and enemies in the latest installment of the Sonic franchise.

  • Platforms: 3DS, PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Platform
  • Theme: Cute Fantasy
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E
  • Released: November '11

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SpaceChem


Video Game: SpaceChem


Video Game: SpaceChem


Video Game: SpaceChem


"SpaceChem" is a puzzle game where players set up circuits in reactors to to import, manipulate, bond and export chemical atoms and molecules to turn the raw materials into the final product. Players can make the systems as convoluted as they like, but there are online leaderboards for both the systems with the most efficent components and the fastest systems to reach the target production. Players can also create and distribute puzzles of their own.

  • Platforms: Macintosh, Windows
  • Genre: Puzzle
  • Theme: Puzzle, Science, Space
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: Not Rated
  • Released: January '11
  • Review by YellowLab

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Split/Second


Video Game: Split/Second


Lights! Camera! Traction! "Split/Second" puts the player in the driving seat as a TV show sets about finding the best stunt and racing driver. With tracks winding through a city rigged with explosives, the goal here is as much about showmanship as fast driving. With more than a hint of an influence from the "Stuntman" series, single and multiplayer racing has never been so exciting.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360, PSP
  • Genre: Racing
  • Theme: Driving
  • Modes: Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E10+, OFLC(AU): PG, PEGI: 7+
  • Released: May '10

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StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty


Video Game: StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty


Video Game: StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty


Video Game: StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty


Where would space exploration be without a little Zerg-rushing in your life? That's right, "StarCraft II" is here and meeting the needs of RTS'ers everywhere. A science fiction, military strategy game, expect to be caught in the crossfire once more as Terrans, the Zerg and Protoss try to stake their claims across the planets. With hints of 2 possible expansion packs being released next year, a gift of StarCraft could be a well timed buy.

  • Platforms: Macintosh, Windows
  • Genre: Real Time Strategy
  • Theme: Aliens, Science Fiction
  • Modes: Cooperative, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: T, PEGI: 16+, USK: 12
  • Released: July '10
  • Review by bacusgod

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Star Fox 64 3D


 Missing Image


Starfox is back, and now he’s in 3D! Starfox 64 3D takes the classic Starfox 64 game and adds a multiplayer battle mode for players to take on their friends in epic space skirmishes. Can Fox stop Andross’s ferocious attack? Only you can find out.

  • Platforms: 3DS
  • Genre: Shoot 'em Up
  • Theme: Cute Fantasy, Flight, Furries / Talking Animals, Science Fiction, Space
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: CERO: A (All ages), ESRB: E10+, OFLC(AU): PG, PEGI: 7+
  • Released: July '11

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Super Mario 3D Land


Video Game: Super Mario 3D Land


Mario lands on the 3DS! Yes, the iconic plumber makes his first platforming outing on Nintendo's new handheld with a combination of 2D platforming and 3D exploration. With Princess Peach once more suffering from a case of kidnap-itis, Mario must action/puzzle his way through a plethora of levels to rescue her. With the Tanooki Suit (originally seen in "Super Mario Bros. 3") seeing a re-appearance, Mario has a number of new abilities to assist him on his way.

  • Platforms: 3DS
  • Genre: Platform
  • Theme: Cute Fantasy
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: CERO: A (All ages), ESRB: E
  • Released: November '11

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Super Meat Boy


Video Game: Super Meat Boy


Video Game: Super Meat Boy


Video Game: Super Meat Boy


Fast, chaotic, and very difficult. This indie platformer combines cute retro graphics, humor and devilish gameplay as Meat Boy travels through a host of nightmarishly perilous caverns and levels in his attempt to rescue his girlfriend from the evil Dr Fetus. Not for the ham-fisted, "Super Meat Boy" brings new meaning to the term "bloody platformer".

  • Platforms: Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Platform
  • Theme: Comedy
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: T, PEGI: 12+
  • Released: October '10

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Super Street Fighter IV


Video Game: Super Street Fighter IV


Video Game: Super Street Fighter IV


Video Game: Super Street Fighter IV


Probably the longest running fighting series in existence, "Street Fighter" gets a new outing with "Super Street Fighter IV". Gameplay and visual style will be familiar to anyone who knows the series, but with the addition of 10 new characters to the cast, as well as a couple of additional multiplayer modes, there's lots here that's worth upgrading to. Possibly the last title in the Street Fighter IV sub-series, who knows what turn the franchise might take next.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Beat 'em Up, Fighting
  • Theme: Anime, Comics, Martial Arts
  • Modes: Hotseat, Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: T, PEGI: 12+
  • Released: April '10

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Terraria


Video Game: Terraria


Video Game: Terraria


Video Game: Terraria


Hot on the heels of "Minecraft" comes "Terraria". Where "Minecraft" is in 3D, "Terraria" is a 2D sprite game, but the similarities are unmistakeable. Mining for materials, making weapons and items, and fighting off enemies, an enormous range of possibilities are open to the player, whether it's simply exploring, or building a home to shelter in throughout the night.

  • Platforms: Windows
  • Genre: Action Adventure, Platform, Sandbox
  • Theme: Fantasy
  • Modes: Cooperative, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: Not Rated
  • Released: May '11

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Tiger Woods PGA Tour 12: The Masters



"Tiger Woods PGA Tour" has been the premier realistic golfing videogame series for over a decade now. This year's iteration brings the Master tournament to gameplayers for the first time. With an all new career mode and set of championship courses, "Tiger Woods 12" is THE game to buy the golfing fanatic this season.

  • Platforms: Macintosh, PlayStation 3, Wii, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Simulation, Sports
  • Theme: Golf
  • Modes: Cooperative, Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E
  • Released: March '11

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Total War: Shogun 2


Video Game: Total War: Shogun 2


Video Game: Total War: Shogun 2


Video Game: Total War: Shogun 2


"Total War: Shogun 2" is a deep and involving strategy game. The player must build up his small domain by conquering provinces and upgrading his villages and castles in a turn based game. When two opposing armies meet the game zooms in and the battle is fought in real-time. Do you have the strategic, diplomatic and economical qualities as well as the tactical skills and quickness to become the new Shogun of medieval Japan?

  • Platforms: Windows
  • Genre: Real Time Strategy, Strategy
  • Theme: Historical, Yakuza / Samurai
  • Modes: Cooperative, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: PEGI: 16+
  • Released: March '11
  • Review by _Kael_

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TrackMania² Canyon


Video Game: TrackMania² Canyon


Video Game: TrackMania² Canyon


"TrackMania" is well known for being one of the craziest high-speed racing series. For those who care more about high-octane stunt-based insanity than realism, "Canyon" brings more of the same to the home PC market. As always, a track editor is present to create your own multiplayer challenges, and that's where half the fun comes from. So, grab a car and get racing!

  • Platforms: Macintosh, Windows
  • Genre: Racing
  • Theme: Driving
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E, PEGI: 3+
  • Released: September '11

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Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3


Video Game: Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3


Once more the icons from "Marvel" and Capcom Co., Ltd. square off for more fighting mayhem. With Doctor Doom and Albert Wesker having teamed up and assembled a mass of villains with aim of conquering both universes, things are looking good. Fortunately, we have an array of heroes reading to put things back as they should be. With the familiar tag-team mode used by the other games of the series, fighting once again comes to the home console market with a hit.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Fighting
  • Theme: Comics
  • Modes: Local Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: CERO: A (All ages), ESRB: T, PEGI: 12+
  • Released: November '11

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Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception


Video Game: Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception


Video Game: Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception


Video Game: Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception


Always an adrenaline explorer of a series, "Uncharted 3" is this year's continuation of the "Uncharted" series. Nathan Drake is this time on the search for the Iram of the Pillars, a legendary lost city, and with enhancements to the combat system and an enhanced rendering engine, you can be sure the search won't be uneventful. For the explorer of the family, or anyone lamenting a lack of "Tomb Raider" titles this year, "Uncharted 3" provides a great way to go treasure-hunting from the sofa.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3
  • Genre: Action Adventure
  • Theme: Mythology
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: T, PEGI: 16+
  • Released: November '11

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Virtua Tennis 4



The fourth iteration of the popular "Virtua Tennis" series, "Virtual Tennis 4" takes advantage of the latest console technologies to make the tennis experience more of an activity. Supporting PlayStation Move, Kinect and Wii MotionPlus, is you want to burn off some calories after the holiday dinner, a little competitive tennis might be just the ticket.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Sports
  • Theme: Tennis
  • Modes: Cooperative, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: E, OFLC(AU): G, PEGI: 3+
  • Released: April '11

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Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine


Video Game: Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine


Video Game: Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine


Video Game: Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine


"Space Marine" brings us back to the well known "Warhammer 40,000" universe. In this hack and slasher you will take the roll of an Ultramarines Captian on a mission to an orc infested world. Armed with all the typical 40K weapons, the player's job is to rescue an Inquisitor trapped on the planet with plans of a new secret weapon and get him out safely. Having to work their way through the hordes of orcs to defeat Chaos will appeal to any fan of the franchise.

  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Action, RPG
  • Theme: Aliens, Science Fiction
  • Modes: Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: M, OFLC(AU): MA15+, PEGI: 18+
  • Released: September '11

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Xenoblade Chronicles


Video Game: Xenoblade Chronicles


With energy blade in hand, can our protagonist, Shulk, stop the Mechon menace which obliterated the Colony he has grown up in? We don't see many RPGs made available for the Wii (in comparison to its competitor consoles), so this JRPG is a welcome change. Released originally in Japan in 2010, "Xenoblade Chronicles" has hit the shelves elsewhere this year, making this an ideal gift for the Wii owner lacking a compelling role-playing gaming experience.

  • Platforms: Wii
  • Genre: RPG
  • Theme: Fantasy
  • Modes: Single-Player
  • Age Rating: CERO: B (12+), OFLC(AU): M, PEGI: 12+
  • Released: June '10

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You Don't Know Jack (2011)


Video Game: You Don't Know Jack (2011)


You think you’re smart? You Don’t Know Jack. Everyone’s favourite trivia game is back to stump players yet again. Featuring over 73 episodes of questions, players will need to be quick on the buzzer to correctly answer the brainburners. Get to the end, and you’re in for a “Jack Attack” round. Players can face off against each other in both local and online multiplayer (online is only for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3).

  • Platforms: DS, PlayStation 3, Wii, Windows, Xbox 360
  • Genre: Trivia
  • Theme: Comedy
  • Modes: Local Multiplayer, Network Multiplayer, Single-Player
  • Age Rating: ESRB: T
  • Released: February '11
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