Diablo III (PC)

If this game wasn’t so good I’d give it a 37

Diablo 3 is the latest game from the powerhouse that is Blizzard. After dominating both the MMO market and the RTS market, they’ve returned to claim their throne at the head of whatever Diablo could be considered to be. Adventure? RPG? Isometric Kleptomaniac Simulator?

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World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria

It’s time to save the world…. of Pandaria

Mists of Pandaria is the fourth expansion to the massively successful World of Warcraft and takes us to a new continent, the mysterious land of Pandaria. The story goes that Pandaria is a world of balance and magical mists have kept the island a secret, until Deathwing came and ruined everything with the C ataclysm. The beta doesn’t include every part of the new expansion, but lets us have a look at the new class, race, and starting zone.

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The Summer Drought

You can lead a gamer to sunshine, but you can’t make him play.

 

It seems the Summer drought is upon us once again. Each year the release list for games goes almost completely blank for July and August as publishers aren’t convinced that gamers will want to be stuck inside playing over the warm months. Unfortunately for us Brits, these warm months have so far turned out to be fairly damp, grey and cold.

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Why all the violence?

Won’t somebody please think of the children?

As a teacher, I’m often expected to be some kind of moral compass. Occasionally people are horrified when they find out I play games. Even worse, that I enjoy games. For those who don’t play, games are apparently seen through the eyes of the Daily Mail: ‘murder simulators’ or at the very least ‘ultra-violent’. It’s not hard to see why I suppose, the games that get the most media coverage, other than Fifa, are games like Call of Duty, Battlefield, and Grand Theft Auto. All of those games contain their fair share of violence as a central feature. This seems at odds with the wholesome education I am providing for children. Surely if I play murder simulators in my spare time, I must be a fairly evil person. I can’t imagine Gandhi ever sat down for a spot of murder simulation with his friends, and I’m almost certain Jesus objected to ultra-violence.
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Raptr

Clever girl…

One of my biggest grievances with the state of gaming is the way my gaming habits have to be split. I have my Xbox Live friends, my Steam account, my PSN ID, an Origin account, my Battle.net account and I think I even have a Wii friend code somewhere. Right now I’m considering restarting WoW, but I am waiting for a friend who might be coming on Xbox Live soon. Do I leave the Xbox on, flicking to it to check if he’s about? Do I use my Windows Phone to check his status, do I ask him to text me? None of these are elegant solutions. But then along comes Raptr.

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What do MMOs need?

Online Multiplayer Maseev…

After playing a lot more World of Warcraft lately, along with more recent entries to the genre such as The Old Republic and Tera, it’s got me wondering what the next big thing will be for Massively Multiplayer Online games. World of Warcraft is getting a bit long in the tooth despite constantly reinventing different aspects, and it’s time something new and mighty came along. We’ve given positive reviews to Tera (here) and The Old Republic (here), but they’re not quite perfect; what do MMOs need?

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Anyone can make games

I want to play a game…

Critics and reviewers are always faced with the argument “Can you do any better?”. While I believe that you can criticise something without being able to do it yourself, there is some weight behind it. People who at least give things a go are in a better situation to appreciate the craft. Musicians appreciate music in a different way, painters appreciate art. But creating games is an onerous task requiring years of study, a team of people, and a multimillion dollar budget, isn’t it? Well, no, not if you have some help. I’ve been playing with three different initiatives (Codecademy, Scratch, and Kodu) all designed to get people into the world of programming and game creation, all of the following are entirely free and will run on most Windows PCs.

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3DTV

See just how far the rabbit hole goes…

I had held off on getting a 3DTV for what seems like a long time. The costs, the fact I don’t like 3D films at the cinema, the way it makes games more confusing than they already are; it just didn’t seem for me. But about a week ago I was on the lookout for a new TV and ended up grabbing a Toshiba 42VL863B 42” 3D LED TV and thought I’d write a bit about our experiences with it so far.

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Welcome

Welcome

“We are not journalists: we are people.”

Welcome to TPReview.co.uk, the website for gamers who work and want to make sure they get the most out of their game-playing time. We will be bringing you reviews from different perspectives, based on the action of playing games. In a recent interview with Penny Arcade, Gabe Newell talked a great deal about the ‘value’ of games. By this he didn’t mean it in the financial sense, but in terms of how much it is worth to you, as a complex equation of cost, time, entertainment, emotional impact, memories, and anything else you get out of playing games.

I like this idea, I think reviewing games purely on their merits in a vacuum can be interesting, but is not that useful to the everyday gamer. When I pay good money for a game, I want to be able to enjoy it. It sounds silly but it’s rather complicated. When I bought Metal Gear Solid 4, it was my first foray into the MGS series. I had about half an hour to play it before I had to do other things, and that turned out not to be long enough to get to the first bit of gameplay, so I had to quit out of the game before the first cut scene ended. Then next time I played I had to sit through half an hour of cut scene that I had already seen. Being new to the series, I then had no idea what was going on when I finally did get to play. I’m pretty sure the game could have been amazing if I knew the story and I had hours to spend on it at a time, but I don’t, so it was a waste of money for me. Similarly, many people slated the Darkness 2 for being so short, whereas I loved that I could finish it in a weekend. People assign ‘value’ to games differently, and this website will show you a few new perspectives on the value of games both new and old.

At the moment I have not set up a comments system for the website, but please do not hesitate to contact us with feedback, advice, or opinions. In the meantime look forward to our review of Star Wars: The Old Republic. In the true spirit of Bioware, it is ‘coming soon’.

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Silent Hill HD Collection (Xbox 360)

Welcome back to Silent Hill…

I remember one traumatic evening as a fifteen year old, watching a friend running around a hospital in Silent Hill 3 whilst sitting a darkened bedroom, equally horrified and fascinated. This was my only experience of Silent Hill until watching the movie many years later, and then playing Origins on PSP, which was not a bad game, even though I did not get around to finishing it for the same reasons that I did not get around to getting anywhere near finishing Silent Hill 2 or 3 in the HD collection.

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Games reviews and opinions from real people with limited time and limited money