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Time to grab your axe and shred in Guitar Hero II for Xbox 360.





Guitar Hero II

Publisher: Activision

Platform(s): Xbox 360

Rating: T — Teen

Game type: Music simulation

**** 1/2 (out of 5)





What’s the premise?


It’s time to pick up your axe and grind it — in hi-def — as the cult-favourite guitar simulator finally makes the leap to next-gen systems on the Xbox 360. Pick up the Gibson X-Plorer guitar controller and try to keep up with more than 70 different songs by hot bands like Nirvana, Kiss, Van Halen, Foo Fighters and My Chemical Romance.





This game is most similar to…?


Guitar Hero.





Can I let my kid/kid brother play it?


Even at its easiest settings, this game is pretty challenging and kids will likely have a tough time keeping up.





One player or more?


Multiple players can play along at lead, bass or rhythm guitars (as long as you’ve got extra X-Plorers or don’t mind using a controller).





What’s missing?


The only thing that could improve this game is having the original artists performing the songs you’re playing along with. The cover bands are good, but there’s nothing like the real thing.





The (not-so) secret to success is…?


Don’t fret the little things. It takes a while to get used to a guitar-shaped controller — you’re not going to be Eddie Van Halen overnight. Work your way up slowly and you’ll be a rock legend in no time.





And in the end?


This game is great on any system, but with the ability to download new content (an expansion pack featuring Bark At The Moon by Ozzy Osbourne and Ace Of Spades by Motorhead is now available through Xbox Live) and the better graphics do add something to this classic title.







Unleash your dark side in Prince Of Persia: Rival Swords for Nintendo Wii.





Prince Of Persia: Rival Swords

Publisher: Ubisoft

Platform(s): Wii (Also available for PSP)

Rating: T — Teen

Game type: Action

****





What’s the premise?


They’ve destroyed your city and killed your lover — now it’s time to show them your dark side. The highly popular Prince Of Persia franchise makes the leap to Wii with Rival Swords, a grim tale of vengeance and battling with ones inner demons — literally.





This game is most similar to…?


Prince Of Persia: The Two Thrones.





Can I let my kid/kid brother play it?


There is far too much killing for anyone under age to absorb.





One player or more?


This latest POP game lets you play as the Prince and as his evil alter ego, The Dark Prince, but is still only a one-person game.





What’s missing?


Longtime players may be right at home with the controls and how the Prince moves, but they can sometimes be a tad tough for newbies to figure out.





The (not-so) secret to success is…?


Speed kills. Learn to strike quickly and decisively and you’ll have a much easier time.





And in the end?


Rival Swords is a pretty solid addition to the Prince Of Persia legacy.











TMNT (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)

Publisher: Ubisoft

Platform(s): Wii (Also available for Xbox 360, PlayStation 2, GameCube, Nintendo DS, GameBoy Advance, PC)

Rating: E - Everyone 10+

Game type: Action

Rating: *** (out of five)





What's the premise?


Feel that Turtle power! Coinciding with the release of the new CGI theatrical film comes the chance to take control of your favourite warrior reptiles as they bounce off walls and bash the bad guys.





This game is most similar to…?


Prince Of Persia: The Two Thrones.





Can I let my kid/kid brother play it?


If your kid is in the 10+-category this game is recommended for they'll probably like it - but it's still a might violent for the younger kiddies.





One player or more?


There are four turtles, but no co-op mode. What were they thinking?!





What's missing?


Co-op mode!!!!





The (not-so) secret to success is…?


This game is pretty elementary with a lot of jumping and simple fighting moves - even with the Wii mode to swing as your weapons. I guess that means there's no real secret.





And in the end?


The moves are cool and it's great to see the Turtles video game tradition continue, but the game is too easy and not being able to team up takes a lot away from it. It's a renter.




jonathan.kuehlein@metronews.ca

 
 
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