Haven: Call of the King – Controls

CONTROLS
DEFAULT
Left Analog Stick move character
Right Analog Stick camera
L3 or R3 Button first person camera
X Button jump
Square Button use mag-ball
Circle Button shield
R2 + L2 Button center view
L1 Button crouch, slide
SPECIAL MOVES
L1 + X Button high jump
X Button (twice) double jump
Left Analog Stick + Square Button lunge with mag-ball attack
UNDERWATER
X Button tread, ascend, jump out
Left Analog Stick swim, dive
Left Analog Stick + X Button surface crawl stroke
SPECIAL ENERGY ATTACKS
X + Circle Button (in midair) shield smash
Square + Circle Button power spin
L1 + Left Analog Stick + Circle Button shield slide
JET PACK
Left Analog Stick move character
Right Analog Stick camera
X Button ascend
Square Button spray water
GLIDER
Left Analog Stick Up dive
Left Analog Stick Down climb
Left Analog Stick Left or Right turn left or right
R1 Button air brake
R2 Button look right
L2 Button look left
BI-PLANE
Left Analog Stick Up dive
Left Analog Stick Down climb
Left Analog Stick Left or Right turn left or right
Right Analog Stick Left or Right look left or right
X Button speed
Square Button shoot
R1 Button roll right
L1 Button roll left
SPEEDBOAT
Left Analog Stick Left or Right turn left or right
X Button accelerate
QUAD RACER
Left Analog Stick steer
X Button accelerate
Square Button brake
HOVERPLANE
Left Analog Stick Up forward
Left Analog Stick Down backward
Left Analog Stick Left or Right turn left or right
X Button ascend
TURRET
Square Button shoot
Circle Button dismount
SUN SURFER
Left Analog Stick Up dive
Left Analog Stick Down climb
Left Analog Stick Left or Right turn left or right
X Button accelerate
Square Button shoot
Circle Button decelerate
R2 Button roll right
L2 Button roll left

Worms Blast Review (2002 / Genres: Action Puzzle)

Its is nothing like the other worm games. It has puzzels like you have a gun and it changes color and what color the gun is the color you have to shoot at. So if you were going to buy this because you thought you had to kill the other worms. Well then dont buy it because it’s nothing like that.

Verdict: 60/100

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2003 Overview

Tiger Woods and the PGA Tour continue their exclusive relationship with EA SPORTS for a fifth game in the best-selling professional golf series. Fourteen courses are available in this version, six of which are based on authentic venues in Pebble Beach, Sawgrass, the Royal Birkdale Golf Club, Princeville, Torrey Pines, Poppy Hills, Spyglass Hill, and Scottsdale. Players will be able to compete as or against 17 PGA Tour athletes, including Ty Tryon, Brad Faxon, Vijay Singh, Mark Calcavechhia, and more.

In addition to the pros, players can select one of nine original characters created specifically for this version, or one of seven returning characters from Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2002. The game once again employs the Total Precision Swing system for analog club movement, and the broadcasting duo of David Feherty and Bill Macatee handle the commentary during competition. Top performances during a round can earn players Trophy Balls for achieving certain milestones in drives, chip-ins, and putts.

New modes of play include the SkillZone, which involves competing in a series of mini-games for points after first purchasing a bucket of balls. Players can also attempt to finish one of 18 new scenarios taking place in specific situations on the links. Speed Golf returns from the previous game, allowing two players to race through a series of holes on a split screen, and a new Create-a-Course feature allows would-be golf designers to assemble their dream course by picking and choosing from any of the available holes.

Features
Play through 14 courses, including authentic venues in Pebble Beach, Sawgrass, and the Royal Birkdale Golf Club
Compete as or against 17 PGA Tour athletes, including Ty Tryon, Brad Faxon, and Vijay Singh
Enjoy commentary from David Feherty and Bill Macatee
Design your dream course with the Create-a-Course feature
Race through a series of holes on a split screen with a friend in “Speed Golf”

Deathrow Game Synopsis

Deathrow chronicles the 22nd century sport of Blitz, which involves two teams of four players attempting to gain possession of a disc and hurl it through a goal suspended a few feet above the ground. Matches are eight-minute affairs, broken up into four quarters spanning two minutes apiece. To acquire the coveted disc, players are free to punch, kick, throw or slide-tackle opponents. Reducing an opponent’s health to zero will have him or her removed from the arena for the remainder of the game; injuring all the opposition’s team members results in an automatic win.

In addition to the visceral battles within the arena, the game offers characters that swear and taunt one another throughout the match, offering comments ranging from mild profanity to hand gestures to four-letter expletives. As each match wears on, power-ups can be collected to provide players with health or attribute boosts and credits. The team’s strategy can be tweaked during a match as well, allowing a team to switch from a defensive frame of mind to a more aggressive one, among other variants.

Conquest mode lets players choose from a handful of playable teams, each differing in strength, toughness, speed, shooting, passing, and aesthetic appeal. In this mode, players will challenge tougher teams, climbing through the ranks and divisions, while earning credits that can be spent on improvements or unlocking game extras. These breaks in the action give players the opportunity to recruit new team members, improve the attributes of existing ones, or become embroiled in random events that can either help or hinder the team.

Matches can be viewed from two different viewpoints: Action and Sports. The first brings players closer to the action, offering a third-person view of the currently controlled team member, while the second provides a bird’s eye view of the proceedings. Players will eventually have access to 18 teams (made up of 150 players) and 32 arenas. Multiplayer matches support up to four players on a split-screen, or up to eight players (one per console) by linking systems together. Deathrow also supports custom soundtracks, allowing players to import songs stored on the system’s hard drive.

Sled Storm Review

Sled Storm offers another heaping dose of white-knuckle arcade racing for fans of SSX and SSX Tricky. The game offers simple controls, fast action, and inventive courses with shortcuts so long they almost qualify as completely new tracks. While the amount of depth is lacking compared to the original Sled Storm, which featured four-player support and a more detailed Championship mode, the excitement and rush you get while streaking down the slopes is almost worth the price of admission alone.

Sled Storm doesn’t complicate matters by forcing players to learn a variety of commands to guide the sled or to perform tricks. It’s a simple matter of accelerating, steering, and getting comfortable with the shoulder buttons for leaning into turns and tricking after jumps. That’s basically it, although players also use the analog stick while the sled is in midair to adjust its angle for a smooth landing. Like SSX, performing tricks increases the boost meter (referred to as the “storm” meter) for much-needed turbo power at the end of a race.

Computer opponents use “catch-up logic” to keep races competitive, and the difference between first and sixth place can be as little as six seconds. This is a cheap and sometimes frustrating system, but never annoying to the point of giving up. While the AI and action is far from realistic, the high-speed nature of the races and wild courses make competing fun. It’s okay to crash several times within the first two laps, since the catch-up AI works in your favor as well. The idea is to race a perfect third lap and then boost your way across the finish line.

The courses are filled with so many potential shortcuts, side paths, and landmarks that it’s often easy to get distracted. An interesting feature is that Sled Storm marks many of the shortcuts with danger signs, meaning the potential for wiping out increases exponentially the longer you stay off the beaten path. Another interesting aspect is not all of the shortcuts are, well, short — they may actually take longer to go through them than it would just to stay on the main route. The Practice Mode is almost necessary to familiarize players with the sheer variety of twisting paths and uphill climbs so they can determine the best route to the finish.

The courses, ranging from a haunted amusement park complete with a working Ferris wheel to a track built around an active volcano, look like they should be a part of the SSX series, with huge ramps, banked turns, barriers to break through, and scary drops to maximize points earned from tricks. Of course, few are courses you could actually race down in real life, and the vehicles often feel more like motorcycles or ATVs than snowmobiles. Sled Storm is also a pure racer, so driving skill is not required to succeed. Braking is rarely necessary unless you’re trying to find a specific shortcut.

Some will obviously take offense to the cheap computer opponents, rewarding players for biding their time and then making their move at the end, while others will be disappointed by the basic Championship mode. The biggest knock is there isn’t cash awarded after each race to upgrade individual sled parts, buy new clothing for the riders, or acquire additional goodies one expects from an EA SPORTS game. The objectives are clear-cut as well: just place within the top two or achieve a certain score. Players never have to perform specific tricks on a course, they can’t try to knock out the competition, and cannot earn different medals for achieving a variety of high scores.

While previous games in the EA SPORTS BIG lineup offered more in the way of customization and extended play value, Sled Storm is still an enjoyable racer that uses its speed and responsive controls to draw players in. It offers plenty of intense moments across expansive courses, a fun two-player mode, and always challenging computer opponents (by design rather than actual skill). Sled Storm may not offer an avalanche of features or a gust of realism, but it won’t leave thrill-seeking players, especially those burned by Arctic Thunder, out in the cold with its high-powered action.

Graphics

The courses are well detailed, and the environments offer mist, swirling snow, and other effects, but the riders and sleds are ordinary looking.

Sound

The voices of Gene Okerlund and Matthew Lillard offer commentary during the races, but it’s repetitive and not very funny. Music is boring.

Enjoyment

The computer AI will give some players fits while others will appreciate the challenge. While the seven courses are huge in size, a few more would have been nice.

Replay Value

The Championship mode is not as deep as it could be, and players can’t race a friend in the Rival Challenge mode. The only thing to keep racing for is to unlock new sleds and characters. Fortunately, the action is fun.

Documentation

The black-and-white manual offers a breakdown of the modes of play as well as a few tips.

WarCraft III: Reign of Chaos Overview

The company known for both defining and refining the genre returns to real-time strategy with this third full release in its longest-running series. Billed as a “Role-Playing Strategy,” Blizzard’s WarCraft III: Reign of Chaos offers a bit more than the standard resource management and army building common to contemporary RTS games. Players control smaller parties of troops and heroes who must interact with NPCs and accomplish quests, as well as out-fight and outwit the forces of the enemy.

The game’s prologue is set several years after the monumental battle at the end of WarCraft II. Several orcs were trapped in Azeroth when the Dark Portal was finally destroyed and many have been forced to live as slaves to the humans, who have grown rich and restless in the ensuing years. But tedious manual labor does not come naturally to all orcs. One such slave, a young orc named Thrall, feels the warrior spirit burning deep inside his being. He breaks free of captivity and sets off across the countryside, gathering fellow lost orcs among his ranks. Rising as a powerful leader among these expatriate warriors, Thrall vows to lead Azeroth’s orcs back to the honor and greatness their heritage demands.

WarCraft III features four distinct races – human, orc, undead, and night elf — each with unique units and special abilities. Manageably small parties of warriors are led by impressive heroes who carry over through the game’s missions, bringing further continuity to the storyline. Heroes gain experience as they progress through missions, becoming increasingly powerful as the story moves forward. Special weapons and magic items may also aid the heroes as they fight towards their final destinies.

WarCraft III: Reign of Chaos includes a map editor that supports all of the game’s tile sets as well as unit scripts and event triggers, allowing inspired gamers to create their own professional-quality adventures. Like all recent Blizzard games, WarCraft III supports multiplayer gaming over the proprietary Battle.net system of servers. In addition to ruthless head-to-head warfare, multiple modes of online play also allow for cooperative team adventuring.

Features
Four playable races – industrious Humans, ruthless Orcs, mysterious Night Elves, and chilling Undead
Battle through interactive 3D worlds full of non-player characters, wandering monsters, and neutral towns
Great heroes of each race lead troops and become more powerful with experience
Go to war with or against other players through Blizzard’s Battle.net service

Dexter’s Laboratory: Chess Challenge Synopsis

The Cartoon Network’s favorite boy genius matches wits with sister Dee Dee, rival Mandark, or even superhero Major Glory in this chess game from bam! Entertainment. Following the rules of the classic strategy game, play is presented in a Dexter’s Lab theme and features special character animations for winning moves. Dexter’s Laboratory: Chess Challenge offers four modes of play, including multiplayer matches between two linked GBA competitors.

Similar Games
Chessmaster Ubisoft Entertainment
Virtual Kasparov Titus Software Corp.

NBA Jam 2002 Overview (Synopsis)

Preceded only by Acclaim’s own Arch Rivals, NBA Jam was among the first basketball games to emphasize a fast-paced, no rules “street” style of play. The title garnered countless quarters in the arcades and led to friendly rivalries in console-equipped living rooms across the country. The action-oriented rules interpretation and exaggerated sports star personalities return in this GBA release. Play should be reminiscent of the title’s mid-’90s incarnation on the SNES, though this 2001 release has been updated with 29 teams and over 140 players from the most recent NBA season.

Legends of Wrestling II Review

Legends of Wrestling II carries on the dubious tradition of poor handheld wrestling games from Acclaim, publishers of such atrocities as WWF Attitude, WWF Betrayal, and countless other offenders. Yet the horrifying part is not the quality of said titles, but that they are selling well enough to justify more slipshod wrestling games. Hopefully, players have learned from previous errors in judgment to avoid Legends of Wrestling II, whose gameplay, graphics, and sound are not up to the standards of Game Boy Color, much less Game Boy Advance. All of the familiar problems from previous handheld wrestling games are present in this 2002 release.

For starters, the hit detection is arbitrary at best, non-existent at worst. Players will watch as a wrestler’s fist misses a few inches from the head and still count as a punch. Get close to a wrestler and body parts will start to merge in a disturbing union of flailing pixels. Characters would be indistinguishable from one another if not for the varying hairstyles and skin colors, and animation consists of a few frames. There’s only one ring in the game, and the wrestlers don’t even enter from opposite sides: the same entrance is shot for both characters.

Even if the hit detection were fine and the visuals were brought up to the handheld’s minimum standards, players would be sorely disappointed with each wrestler’s basic move set. The grappling system in particular will tear out the hairs of the most ardent fan, with a ridiculous timing-based interface that rewards blind luck over skill. A horizontal meter appears in the corner underneath the wrestler’s health, with a line rapidly moving back and forth. In order to perform a grapple, players must press the button when the line hits the green region, but the meter moves extremely fast and button presses aren’t nearly as responsive as they should be.

The rest of the package seems hastily thrown together. While the menu screens and career aspects are nice, there’s no two-player support, which is almost unforgivable in any wrestling title. The computer AI is cheap one moment and then brain-dead the next, but the most irritating aspect by far is the overall sluggishness of the action inside the ring. Acclaim should have never released this title in such a sorry state of playability, but the only way for companies to get the message that this is unacceptable is when players or their parents stop buying titles from them.

Graphics

Take a shapeless form, throw on some different colored hair and call him a legend of wrestling.

Sound

The same ohs and ahs are recycled over and over again.

Enjoyment

The action inside the ring is slow, tedious, and in some cases, painful — at least to the thumbs.

Replay Value

Completing the Career mode unlocks character bios, but there’s no two-player support. That may be a blessing in disguise….

Documentation

Perhaps the best part of the game is the documentation, which explains the ridiculous grapple meter and various game modes.

High Rollerz Review

High Rollerz can’t compete with major casino collections, such as those produced by Hoyle or even Avery Cardoza, but it doesn’t need to since the five fairly common games offered are presented in a charming and engaging manner. The collection proves that games don’t need an excess of features or overdone animations to be enjoyable.

High Rollerz offers a choice of nine attractively drawn characters to represent you throughout the game. The icons are cute and done in a style that evokes comic books and anime, and each has its own personality with subtle effects that never distract from the game. The dealers at each table are done in the same style, and add cohesiveness to the game. While nothing about High Rollerz’s graphics is overly impressive, the presentation has a unique and refreshing look, breaking the mold of tired, mundane gambling titles.

Although the rules of roulette, craps, baccarat and blackjack remain the same no matter what collection they’re in, High Rollerz makes them friendly and approachable. The help file can’t be accessed within the game, but it’s a quick read and covers the rules easily. Players unfamiliar with the games can essentially jump right in and catch on quickly with the basic information offered.

The three variations on poker provided by High Rollerz, 7-card stud, 5-card draw, and Texas Hold’em, are an added bonus, giving the collection a bit of an advantage since many casino collections include only 5-card draw. Three levels for minimum and maximum bets allow you to exercise your preference for the stakes, and money totals for each selected character carry over between games and can be reset at any time. Considering this collection is so low profile, inclusion of these features is somewhat surprising.

High Rollerz may have limited offerings in terms of games, but offers them in impressive style. It can’t replace a more complete collection, but stands up well to the competition.

Graphics

Colorful character designs, nicely drawn cards and tables, as well as sharp and clear visuals make the games easy to play.

Sound

Voices and sound effects are unobtrusive and evoke a casino atmosphere.

Enjoyment

The collection offers only five games, including three variations on poker, but the games are done perfectly.

Replay Value

Carry over money totals and game enjoyment should be enough to make most gamers return for more.

Documentation

The manual covers installation, and the help file is not available during play.