What We Have Been Playing – November 2012

Each month of the year our regular staff members come together to tell you what each of them have been playing over the past few weeks, we like to call this our Monster Month. Read on to find out what each of us have been playing over the month, as well as give an insight in the games we are looking forward to playing in the coming month.

Enjoy!

Lee Matthews

Courage, Doing What You’re Afraid To Do

What a quote that is, and one from a Medal of Honor recipient, which leads onto me playing the latest Medal of Honor installment in recent weeks. I have actually been enjoying it, well at least the multiplayer I have been. It’s amazing really you’ve got your choice of numerous characters with cool perks, and yet I ALWAYS end up running back to the SAS geezer. Who cares if your weapon isn’t as good, you’re sporting the British flag whilst demolishing some German online… pure bliss.

I am also still cracking on with Madden. It doesn’t quite cheer me up enough to look at the Eagles record, another loss this past weekend has stared to break my morale and everytime I pick up my Madden case it does seem to get that little bit heavier. Granted my one-year-old’s death grip on the other side of it no doubt adds to the increased heaviness.

What’s there to look forward too? HITMAN ABSOLUTION, I cannot wait for this title, I may have to wait a few weeks for it, but forget your Assassin’s Creeds, BLOPs and MOHs, Agent 47 is the guy you always want to control. Damn I have got to go and watch the film now.

Christmas is coming, we know this as adverts are being played earlier and earlier, and by the way don’t watch the John Lewis advert people are raving about… it sucks… bah humbug!


Anthony Barker

Third Dimensional Assassin

November is never a quiet period of the year. It is the period where every publisher launches their latest release into the gaming ether and prays that Santa pops a few of them into our stockings during that holiday buying period that we commonly call Christmas.

Amongst the November deluge of games you would have found me mostly creeping around the woods killing rabbits and wrestling with bears in Assassin’s Creed III. I’ve had quite the opposite reaction to some people’s opinions on the game, in that I found the first half more enjoyable and the latter half that I am on a bit of a grind. But it is still early days, so I am hoping it gets better as I get closer to the game’s finale.

I of course had to pick up Black Ops 2, what dedicated FPS fan wouldn’t. I’ve never been a fan of its multiplayer, so I was here to take the entertaining ride of its single player campaign, and that is exactly what I got. The game started out a little cringe worthy, but it picked up its feet towards the end. The campaign was very short, but I got what I wanted out if it, nothing more, and maybe a bit less.

Now we’re in the last month of the year and it is that time where we wind down with friends, family, and the occasional gamepad (once everyone has dozed off from consuming too much festive food). I hope to be checking out the latest DLC pack for Battlefield 3, becoming a Hitman once again, and finishing off earning my Assassin badge.


David Bevan

Cars and Guns but not together

I thought last month was bad but taking a holiday away from real life on the launch of Halo 4 was madness. As such the game hasn’t even seen my Xbox, as my focus has been on the plethora of games that November has given us.

Need for Speed: Most Wanted was the perfect of combination of NFS and Burnout and just what I wanted amidst the FPS flooded marketplace. The game was great and handled perfectly and although you can make your way to becoming the Most Wanted driver in a short space of hours, the amount of cars and races available, as well as the multiplayer, will keep me going back to it well past Christmas.

Then Black Ops 2 hit. A good game but now I am starting to tire of it. The Multiplayer was good fun and will probably hold my attention for a little longer, but I expect it to start collecting dust shortly.

Rounding out the month is the release of The Walking Dead Episodes – Episode 5 on Xbox Live. This has been a great series and I just can’t wait for Season 2. Shocks, surprises, great storytelling and great design, everything about this game is awesome and it cannot be recommended enough.

It has been a great end to the year with October and November delivering some high profile games for fans of all genres.


Marty Greenwell

XBLA or bust.

This month I have been catching up with XBLA titles, the demos of which I’ve had sat on the Xbox360 hard drive for a while. Out of all the titles sat there, most have found the recycle bin; it’s been very slim pickings on XBLA titles for a while now. An exception to that rule however is Pool Nation. This is a super pool sim with some very nice physics and ruthless AI, bit of a shame about the tacky music, but you can’t have it all.

The SEGA fighting classics (released by the time you read this) could be interesting; Virtua Fighter 2 and Fighting Vipers were both games I played on the SEGA Saturn, though I suspect they might have aged somewhat now. Nevermind, there are always the old reliable to fall back on: Trials Evolution and Pinball Arcade.

Until next month, keeps those joypads waggling.


Justin Ortiz-Burrow

I Love The 80s

I have a confession to make; I do not like turkey, I do not like cranberry sauce, and I do not like sweet potatoes. So for me, November in terms of holidays doesn’t mean much. Luckily, the month was also filled with games (none of which contained cranberry sauce).

Right out of the gate, November hit me with the blockbuster Halo 4. Being a fan since the first game released on the original Xbox, I’m always interested in a new entry. As with Reach, I felt the story campaign left something to be desired but the online was vastly improved. As for the other FPS blockbuster of the month, Black Ops II, I found it falling short in nearly every aspect. But then again, personally I’ve been tired of the Call of Duty series for some time.

This month also brought me a couple of long-awaited releases. Hitman: Absolution was a game I’ve been excited for since its announcement. While I do have some complaints, the game was still great and as with all Hitman games, I found myself re-playing levels trying different ways to kill the target. The Walking Dead game also released its final episode this month. With the build up from the last episode, there was sure to be some big moments in the finale, and I can safely say I haven’t felt this invested in a game in some time. Here’s to season 2, I only hope they keep up the fantastic work.

Off the beaten path for me, I’ve found myself playing the PC indie release Hotline Miami until the early hours of the morning. The 80s style, fantastic music, retro graphics and tough difficulty mix with a bizarre and dark story making it honestly one of my favorite games of all time.

Looking ahead, I’m hoping for lots of snow. But as far games go, I’ve got my eye on FarCry 3. There’s nothing like gunning through a tropic wasteland while the snow falls outside.


Tim Leigh

Too many games too little time

A common problem that gamers will face from time to time is having far too many games sitting on their shelf unplayed and barely any time to play them. This month has been one of those times and although looking back at what I’ve played it may seem a lot. There is still so much I want to play, but with all the other responsibilities and activities I have in my life it’s becoming increasingly difficult to fit these into my schedule.

There have been two main games that I have been playing over the last month, one which most will expect and the other which will come as a surprise to most. In fact, I suspect a lot of people haven’t even heard of the latter!

The first game is Assassin’s Creed 3, which I’ve been waiting so long to play after previewing it almost a year ago, and while it’s most certainly not my game of the year, more on that next month, it is a very good game with a rich story and enjoyable multiplayer. The most exciting mode in the multiplayer is Wolf Pack, which allows you to group up with up to three friends and run around various multiplayer maps assassinating your targets. After gaining the required points you can move to the next sequence until you hit sequence twenty five and finish the game.

The other game I’ve spent a lot of time playing is Eternal Sonata, which is an RPG that was released a few years back. I had already completed the game once, but it has a new game+ mode that really tests your skills and allows you to unlock the remaining 700-800 gamerscore, which you can only gain in this mode. I finally got my 1000g and it was a joy to play through the story again. I would highly recommend this game to any RPG fans as it’s got to be one of the most stunning looking games out there and has a deep and moving story that is rare in games these days.

Not wanting to start this piece again, I should mention I’ve also played through Halo 4, which was a job well done by 343 Industries and the multiplayer on it has taken a fair bit of my free time. I felt the story was really well written and took me on an emotional roller coaster and I’m really looking forward to see what they come up with next.

That will do it for this month but stay tuned for December’s blurb as we start choosing our GOTY and look back at what has been a crazy year for game releases while looking forward to where the future will take us!


David Wriglesworth

Can we delay the end of the world?

According to the Mayan calendars, the world comes to an end on December 21st. That gives me a few weeks to finish off all the new game releases in November which, quite frankly, isn’t enough time.

Hitman: Absolution, Far Cry 3, Need for Speed: Most Wanted and Call of Duty: Black Ops II are just some of the titles I was looking to delve into this month, though one look at my bank balance said different.

However, I still managed to find the time and the money to play Halo 4 – one of my favourite games series, and the latest instalment certainly didn’t disappoint.

Assassin’s Creed III also received substantial playtime, which I also reviewed for this very site. Even though I played the title at the start of November, there’s still plenty of replayability and life in the game, even at the end of the month, so you definitely get your money’s worth with this one.

Finally, with the imminent release of The Hobbit in cinemas, LEGO Lord of the Rings is another title that has been spinning away in my disc tray. Despite only being a few hours into the game, it certainly does the LEGO series of games justice and I’m looking forward to seeing what else it brings.

As for next month, I’ll probably still be playing these titles up until Christmas when, hopefully, Santa delivers a few new games (or five) down the chimney.


Craig Anderson

Halovember

November, the biggest gaming month of the year, was not a let down. Call of Duty: Black Ops II and Halo 4 arrived, and it was a tough decision which of the two games was going to spend the majority of its time in my Xbox 360 disc tray. That was until I had played both of them and it quickly became an easy decision…

Halo 4 is immense, it should not be missed and is better than Black Ops II. Here is the final paragraph to my Console Monster review: “This is THE best Halo game yet, and although the campaign in short, there’s an abundance of content to keep Halo 4 in your disc tray. Spartan Ops is a great unique new way to deliver free content and multiplayer is just sheer class. Since the end of Halo 3 I really have been relying upon Call of Duty to get my FPS fix, however that is no more as 343 Industries have delivered. It plays great, it looks great. It is great!”


So that wraps up our Monster Month for November. Why not let us know what YOU have been playing this past month, leave us your gaming antics in the comments below! Until next month, happy gaming to all our fellow Monsters!

You can keep up to date with all the latest gaming news, reviews, previews, media and more by following us on Twitter @ConsoleMonster or Like us on Facebook and have us in your news feed.

Anthony Barker

Anthony is the designer, developer and owner of Console Monster. In his spare time, Anthony is a keen gamer who enjoys playing mostly First-Person Shooters and Racing games. When he is not developing games or tweaking this site, Anthony likes to be on the slopes snowboarding or hurtling down off-road tracks on his mountain bike.

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