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MechAssault Review (Xbox)

December 22, 2002

The venerable Battletech franchise gets a new lease on console-based life in MechAssault. Featuring amazing graphics, destructible environments, and an incredibly fun online multiplayer through Xbox LIVE, this is definitely a big robot title with serious appeal. Click here.

Beam Breakers Review (PC)

So what could be more fun than running around jacking cars in a crowded modern city? How about jacking hovercars in a futuristic city? Beam Breakers features amazing graphics and brings the Driver and GTA style of gameplay into the future. Click here for more.

Marvel vs. Capcom 2 Review (PS2)

Capcom is known for releasing their games all over the place, and sometimes we give them a hard time for it. Other times, like right now while we're playing Marvel vs. Capcom 2 on the PS2 and Xbox, we're very happy that they keep their titles alive. MvC2 is still a great game that any fan of the fighter should check out. Click here.

Arx Fatalis Review (PC)

JoWood Productions has made a great showing for us at the end of the year. First there's Beam Breakers, and now we get Arx Fatalis, a PC RPG that draws a lot from the success of Morrowind but still manages to be incredibly enjoyable. Hardcore PC RPG fans should be very happy about this. Click here.

Rise of Nations Preview (PC)

Microsoft kicked us down an early version of Rise of Nations, their new, fast-paced RTS title, and we love it. Due out next year, Rise of Nations asks you to develop a civilization and take over the world, all in rapidly paced battle and building segments. Be prepared to confront your inability to do anything else next year. Click for more.

Super Monkey Ball Jr. Review (GBA)

THQ has done a nice job with the GBA version of Sega's popular Gamecube puzzle game. Super Monkey Ball Jr. manages to capture almost all of the endearing qualities of the original. Grab a copy or three and get your monkey roll on with a group of friends. Click for more.

Fighter Maker 2 Review (PS2)

Agetec brings us the next-gen installment of their very creative franchise in Fighter Maker 2. The graphics are better and there are more options than ever for making your own fighters and then duking it out in the ring. Unfortunately, tedious creation menus and a clunky core fighting engine hinder this one. Click here.

Legaia 2: Duel Saga Review (PS2)

Legend of Legaia was a moderately successful RPG several years ago. Eidos' Fresh Games has now brought the sequel, Legaia 2: Duel Saga, to the US, and it's not bad. It's got the requisite RPG elements, including the bunny-eared waitresses. But it's not great either, mainly because it's tough to escape the feeling that we've been here, done this. Click!

Zapper Review (GC & GBA)

We sent Jason to review both the GC and GBA versions of Zapper and what did we get? One review. It figures -- Jason can be difficult like that sometimes. But we can sympathize: It's hard to deal with mediocre games that cover well-trod territory and fail to really stand out in any way. Click here for the whole sad story.

Disney's PK: Out of the Shadows Review (PS2)

Disney and Ubi Soft have teamed up to release Disney's PK: Out of the Shadows, in which Donald Duck takes on the role of a superhero. Sound good so far? Now, imagine, instead of Donald's regular voice, we make him sound like Sideshow Bob? Just for fun? Click here.

Ripping Friends Review (GBA)

John K's latest abomination is Ripping Friends, showing on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim. It's not a good cartoon: The titular friends are just grotesque Tick wannabes and it all feels like the boring parts of Ren and Stimpy rehashed. But that's a lot better than the game... Click here.

Hot Wheels Velocity X Review (PS2)

Leveraging their Hot Wheels property, THQ has released Hot Wheels: Velocity X. Built on the well defined futuristic race/combat model, this game is held up by dated graphics and terrible controls. For now you're better off in the toy aisle looking for Hot Wheels joy. Click here.

WWE Road to Wrestlemania X8 Review (GBA)

Certainly the most horrible wrestling game we've played this year, WWE Road to Wrestlemania X8 is a stinker that no wrestling fan wants to find in their stocking. Bad animation and bad controls ruin this game, although the retro Mortal Kombat vibe is kind of cool. Click here.

On Hiatus

GF! will be taking the next 10 days or so off. If you've already read all of these pieces, check out our Archive section, or, if all else fails, go spend some time with your family:  I'm sure granny has recovered from that whooping you gave her in VF4. It's been a great year for us, and we'd like to thank the game developers, our PR contacts, fellow webmasters, and, most importantly, our dedicated staff of GF! writers. Without them we would have nothing to read, and they don't get nearly the rewards they deserve. And, of course, this site would be a failure without all of you readers. We look forward to serving you piping hot videogame coverage in the new year. Thanks for reading. We're outta here. See you in 2003.

The GF! Editors:
Shawn Rider
Jeff Luther
Sarah Wichlacz

GTA: Vice City Review (PS2) and Official Soundtrack Review

December 20, 2002

Rockstar brings us the long awaited next installment in the GTA series, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City. It does a whole lot of things right, but it isn't as revolutionary as GTA3, and, frankly, we're disappointed with the direction in which the series is heading. Of course, the soundtrack is amazing, so we reviewed the Vice City Official Soundtrack Box Set, too. Click here.

Asheron's Call 2: Fallen Kings Review (PC)

Microsoft Games and Turbine have created a thoroughly worthy sequel to their original MMORPG. Asheron's Call 2: Fallen Kings is beautiful and amazing to play. It is a sign of what is to come in the realm of massively multiplayer online role playing. Click here for more.

Age of Mythology Review (PC)

The Age of Kings series also gets an update in the latest installment, Age of Mythology. Bruce Shelley and company have created a wonderful strategy game that melds three distinct strains of mythology. Featuring a new 3D engine, you can check out the battles in an array of views. It's really a blast to play, so click here for the review.

BloodRayne Review (Xbox, PS2, GC)

Majesco's big fall title is a sultry little adventure game called BloodRayne. Half-human, half-vampire, and all woman, agent BloodRayne slaughters mutated zombies and Nazis at the same time. It's gorey, fun to play, and full of B grade horror goodness. Not for everyone, if this is your thing, you'll really love it. Click here.

Denki Blocks Review (GBA)

Puzzle games are the most dangerous: A good one can keep you glued to your Game Boy for days on end, inciting ridicule from friends and relatives until they try it and get addicted, too. Denki Blocks is a great example of a great puzzle game, and fans of the genre need to get it. Click here.

Turbo Turtle Adventure Review (GBA)

Taking a page from the likes of Marble Madness and Super Monkey Ball, Turbo Turtle Adventure has you tilting and sliding your way to fun and frustration. It's a fun concept, but the trial and error gameplay gets tedious. Click!

D-Link Wireless Access Point and Ethernet Bridge Reviews (PC & Consoles)

December 16, 2002

See that thing at right? That's the new D-Link DWL 810 Ethernet to Wireless Bridge, and that's the thing you can use to hook your Xbox, PS2, or Gamecube into a wireless broadband network for online gameplay. Pretty sweet, huh? But you have a wired network at home, right? No worries -- pick up the D-Link DWL-900AP+ Wireless Access Point to turn your home network into WiFi paradise. Click here for the DWL 810. Here for the 900AP+.

Roller Coaster Tycoon 2 Review (PC)

One of the most popular games of all time, believe it or not, is Roller Coaster Tycoon. Weird, huh? It seems that way until you've gotten sucked into an all-night park-building marathon. Roller Coaster Tycoon 2 has come out, and Infogrames has wisely chosen to not change much. See what all the hype is about. Click here for the review.

Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee Review (GC)

If you're a fan of the button mashing multiplayer beat-em-up, then you definitely need to check out Godzilla: Destroy All Monster Melee. Sporting some of the prettiest graphics on the Gamecube, this is a must-play title, if only to spend an evening destroying cities and wreaking havoc. Click here to rampage on.

Resident Evil Zero Review (GC)

Those neck-chompin', boot-scootin', moanin' and scrapin' zombies are back. Actually, since Resident Evil Zero takes place before the first Resident Evil, those zombies just haven't been cleaned out yet. Slick graphics and a brand new two-character simultaneous play mode set Zero apart from its predecessors. Click here.

Armobiles Preview (PC)

Polish developer, Ganymede Technologies, brings us a game that feels like a combination of many other games. Armobiles combines elements of Twisted Metal, San Francisco Rush, and even Re-Volt to create a game that feels surprisingly fresh and is really fun to play. Click here for the complete preview.

David Beckham Soccer Review (GBA)

David Beckham is one of the biggest stars in the soccer world. That means that his game franchise, David Beckham Soccer, should be really great. Unfortunately, it isn't. Most of our American readers won't care either way, but simplistic controls will frustrate our more worldly gaming audience. Click!

US Special Forces: Team Factor Review (PC)

Xicat Interactive brings us another military-based tactical first person shooter, and it feels a lot like Counterstrike except bad. US Special Forces: Team Factor has pitiful graphics and terrible sound. The single player mode is pretty cruddy, and the multiplayer is hindered by the fact that nobody wants to play it. Click.

Star Wars: The New Droid Army Review (GBA)

THQ has put out several new GBA Star Wars adventure games, and all of them have been pretty bad. Star Wars: The New Droid Army is no exception. It's another sidescroller adventure game where you jump stuff and swing your lightsaber. Whee! Hardcore Jedi Knights click here.

MS Combat Flight Simulator 3 Review (PC)

December 10, 2002

Our guy in the sky, Thomas, returns to give us the lowdown on the latest installment of Microsoft's venerable WWII flight sim franchise. Combat Flight Simulator 3 packs in a load of new planes, a new dynamic mission system, and some improved ground-level graphics. It's not revolutionary, but it is a very solid update to a well loved series. Click here for more.

Dino Stalker Review (PS2)

Capcom brings us a combination of FPS and on-rails shooter in Dino Stalker. In order to save the future, you must destroy the past, or some such nonsense. The plot isn't important -- killing dinosaurs is. Fans of the shooter might want to take a closer look. Click here.

Robotech: Battlecry Review (PS2)

TDK Mediactive has singlehandedly made Robotech fans very happy this fall. Their take on the franchise has been very successful. Robotech: Battlecry is stylish and fun to play. Unfortunately, this is a season swamped with giant robot games, and the biggest thing going for this one is the story. Robotech fans, check this out. Click!

Last Day for Vice City and Zapper Contests

This is the last day to enter our Vice City Soundtrack Official Box Set contest and our Zapper contest. We're giving away a complete box set featuring the music from Vice City and special codes for the game. Plus, we're giving away four copies of Zapper, the bug-zapping platformer from Infogrames. Click.

WWE Smackdown: Shut Your Mouth Review (PS2)

December 1, 2002

THQ and Yukes has done a number on the Smackdown series. After the disappointment of Just Bring It last year, WWE Smackdown: Shut Your Mouth restores the franchise to its original glory. The season mode is great, graphics are seriously improved, and the wrestling has undergone some minor changes to make it a lot better. Click!

Star Wars: The Clone Wars Review (GC)

LucasArts puts you in the last battle of Episode II and takes you into the ensuing conflict with Star Wars: The Clone Wars. Sure, it plays a lot like Starfighter, Rogue Squadron, and every other Star Wars battle oriented game, but the scale of these engagements is enough to drop your jaw once again, as well as the framerate on your 'Cube. Click here for more.

Myst III: Exile Review (Xbox, PS2)

Ubi Soft has brought the venerable Myst series to console systems, and, as anyone familiar with the franchise would guess, the style and focus of gameplay doesn't quite jive with what most console gamers expect. Many reviewers have reacted to Myst III: Exile like our reviewer, Eric. (Click here to read his review of Myst III: Exile for Xbox.) The pacing and mechanics of the game are unusual on the console, but this is still one of the most popular franchises in the history of gaming. So Monica, a long time Myst fan, reviewed the PS2 version of the game and gives us the other side of things, showing for the right gamers, Myst has still got it. Click here.

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