Saturday, 31 December 2011

...and the winners are...

Alright everyone, there's going to be a belated Christmas present coming to some of my readers. It would have been nice to have more people entering these giveaways, but not to worry. The aim, of course, is to have more people reading my blog. It would be nice to think I've at least accomplished that, heading into 2012, but I suppose the proof of the pudding will be in the stats. Erm... that doesn't really work, does it?

Enough idle banter... here are the winners!

The Mark of Kri - Tony Mansfield, if he wants it!
Rayman Forever – RetroWench
Hitman Trilogy – Shuyin
Alpha Protocol – Josiah Y
Sonic Generations – Bryony Ramsden
VVVVVV – nobody!
Grand Theft Autos – Bryony Ramsden
Oddboxx – gnome
Space Channel 5: Part 2 – Shuyin
Gaming Soundtracks – Nobody!
Psychonauts – Steve Morton
Indie Humble Bundle 4 - Ashcroft

Congratulations to all those above, and commiserations to those who missed out. If you didn't win anything, keep an eye on my Twitter feed... I may (will) be offering some consolation prizes in the next day or two...

Get in touch with me if you've won anything, I'll need details for sending out the prizes.

Happy New Year!

Games of the year?

With 2012 just around the corner, the time has come for all self-respecting publications to consider, and then publish, their top games of 2011. And once they've done that, I'll have a go at mine. Just kidding! Ideally, I want to get my list up while 2011 still resides in the memory banks (and not in April, like I did last year...).

But what on Earth will go in there? 2011 was a fantastic year for games! I've played tons of top quality efforts in the last twelve months, so narrowing it down could prove to be very, very difficult (maybe it will be April when I'm finished, after all...).

I've made an early decision to produce two lists, one for iOS games and one for "proper" games. Which is not to diminish from the little uns... in fact, some of those games have been among my very favourites, with real imagination and joy to be had. No, this way I can include more! Yeah, it's a bit of fence-sitting, but I just can't see any way to do a top ten otherwise. Unless I do a top twelve... or a top twenty... or... GAH!

Oh well, we'll see what I come up with in the fullness of time. In the meantime, enter my giveaways (if you read this in time), have a great New Year and I'll see you back here very soon!

Thursday, 29 December 2011

On the twelfth day of Christmas, A Gamer Forever Voyaging gave to me... twelve indie crackers!

This is a biggie.

I'll say it again.

This. Is. A. Biggie.

The last giveaway of my Twelve Games of Christmas is... the Indie Humble Bundle 4!

The Humble Bundles are magnificent affairs, whereby some of the finest indie games developers get together and sell off their games on the cheap, in the name of charity. So we get loads of good stuff to play, and charities get a stack of cash. Everybody wins! Erm... except for the devs... although I suppose they get to feel all warm and fuzzy at the good deed they're doing. Well done, indie devs!

Now then, I paid more than the average price for this gift bundle, because I'm such a giving soul. So what does that mean you'll be getting, if you win? Well, you'll be getting these games:

Gratuitous Space Battles
Cave Story+
Bit.Trip Runner
Super Meat Boy
NightSky HD
Crayon Physics Deluxe
And Yet It Moves

Not only that, you'll be getting the soundtracks to all of them as well! That's just flippin' awesome.

So come on, enter this one. You'll get stacks of fun out of it if you win, and it's all for a good cause! Just post a link to this article somewhere appropriate... go on, give it a good plug! Then post a comment in here telling me what you've done, and you'll be in with a chance of winning a dozen great games and their soundtracks! It's worth it just for Jamestown if you ask me, that's brilliant, but there's not a duffer on here and most games are superb. Enter! Now!

On the eleventh day of Christmas, A Gamer Forever Voyaging gave to me... nauts that are psyching?

I was going to give away some kind of Pipemania game today, but I couldn't find one that wasn't on an emulator. So instead, I'm just going to give away something excellent! And that excellent game would be... Psychonauts!

Awwwww! How cute?

I first played Psychonauts... right when it came out, actually. In fact, I wrote a short review of it for excellent-but-resting-indefinitely games mag, Way of the Rodent. That was when I was living in America, so I've been a fan of this game for a long time.

Age hasn't diminished it any, it's still great. It's a platform adventure of the most imaginative kind. You play Raz, a kid who has run away from his life in the circus (hang on, don't you usually run away to join the circus?) to join a psychic summer camp.

Yeeeah, He doesn't look mental, at all...

Unfortunately for Raz, the camp only allows students that they have recruited, so-called "Psychonauts", so once he's there, the camp leaders phone his parents to come and collect him. Hang on, what? They do, though, realise the Force is strong with this one, and allow him to stay and take part in some of the camp's gentler activities.

That's when the game goes around the bend. The actual camp just acts as kind of a hub. The real levels of the game are like nothing else you've played... As a psychic wunderkind, you have the power to enter other peoples' minds! And this, you must and will do.

Christ. He'd need a lot of Fairy Liquid.

These levels and boss battles are spectacularly imaginative and brilliantly warped, providing an incredible insight into the game's characters... and, I suspect, the designers! You'd probably expect nothing less from the mind behind the likes of Grim Fandango, but it's really quite mental and has to be experienced to be believed. And you can experience it, as I'm giving away a copy on Steam!

Here's the scoop: post a link to this write-up somewhere appropriate, then post a comment here telling me what you've done. That'll put you in the draw. Good luck!

On the tenth day of Christmas, A Gamer Forever Voyaging gave to me... ten gaming soundtracks...

This giveaway is a little bit different. Rather than give away games, I'm giving away their soundtracks. Now, I could have just ripped a few MP3s and e-mailed you Rob Hubbard's Greatest Hits (which would have been awesome), but I'm above that. Instead, I've got you ten complete albums... soundtracks from some of indie gaming's best!

There are tunes here from the likes of... Super Meat Boy! Minecraft! VVVVVV! And a few others besides. You could spice up the MP3 player of your choice to no end, by adding some of your favourite recent gaming tunes. Or maybe even some stuff you've never heard of before.

This stuff is all DRM-free, and available to download as either 320kbps MP3s, or in FLAC format. So if you like the sound of that (see what I did there?), then all you have to do is publicise this blog/giveaway somewhere appropriate, and then post a comment here telling me where you've gone and sprayed my scent. Then you'll be in the hat! Easy!

On the ninth day of Christmas, A Gamer Forever Voyaging gave to me... all kinds of dancing...

You won't find nine ladies dancing in this giveaway. There are some ladies dancing, and one in particular. And there are lots of aliens dancing, too. That's because today's Steam giveaway is Space Channel 5: Part 2!

This game is just the geekiest type of cool. It's so cool, it's not cool. Set 500 years into the future, you play sexy ace reporter Ulala, facing off against the Rhythm Rogues as they kidnap innocent people and force them to dance. The bastards! Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to dance the enemy off their feet and save the day... and get the best ratings you can while doing it!

Up, down, up, down, shoot! Shoot! Shoot!

It's a really strange game, truth be told, but very charming and great fun to play. It even features an appearance from "Space Michael", namely Michael Jackson, who was a renowned lover of video games, of course. And you wouldn't exactly see him as a character in a beat 'em up, would you?

There's not much more that needs to be said. It's a simple game, and a simple giveaway. Do the old "plugging this link in a relevant place" thing, post a comment here letting me know where you've done it, and you might need to get your dancing shoes on!

On the eighth day of Christmas, A Gamer Forever Voyaging gave to me... eight types of ammo...?

Bit on the cryptic side, this one. There's not really any way you could guess what game features eight types of ammo. Or rather, there are probably loads that do, and it could be any of them. But come on, it's really hard to tie things into this!

Anyway, the game I'm thinking of in this instance is... Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath.

Yes, you can win the slightly strange Western-themed FPS classic! And not only that, because I'm nice, I'm actually giving away the Oddboxx - all the Oddworld games in one handy package (well, it's not really a package, it's a series of downloads on Steam). What a great collection of games!

It's an odd sort of place, this.

The first Oddworld game is Abe's Oddysee, which I distinctly remember playing on the Playstation. It's a side-scrolling platform game in which you, as Abe, must free enslaved creatures before they can be turned into food products at the factory where you work. It has to be said, one of the main reasons I was ever drawn to the game was its bizarre and somewhat dark storyline! Always did have a liking for the slightly twisted...

It's a lot of fun, with plenty of humour to lighten proceedings. This is welcome, because there are moments of frustration in the game. Still, it's well worth sticking it out till the end.

A bolt of lightning!

With Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee being so successful, a sequel was inevitable. Indeed, the path of Oddworld had been mapped out to include five games, right from the off. However, in a move that would cash in on Oddysee, a spin-off sequel was released that was not a part of the main storyline. That spin-off was called Oddworld: Abe's Exoddus.

Exoddus continues at the exact point where the first game finishes. This could be said about every aspect of the game... there's not a lot new there. It's a bit less frustrating, due to a newly-implemented save system, but other than that it's the same bizarre, tripped-out platforming goodness that the first game was full of. It's cracking old-school action.

Like a mouse on a wheel!

Not exactly hot on the heels of these two came the next Oddworld game... Munch's Oddysee. As you might have guessed, this introduced a new Oddworld character. It also introduced the 3D viewpoint that is the norm in most platformers nowadays (and was thenadays, too!). I haven't played this entry in the series, so I don't know what it's like. Critics weren't as keen on it, though, although it still managed to do reasonably well, scores-wise.

And so, finally, we come to the centrepiece of the collection - Stranger's Wrath. Which I haven't played yet. I really ought to... I know several people that highly rate it, with one fella rating it as his game of the year for 2005 (2005? Was it really as long ago as that?).

A man's got to know his limitations.

It's a hybrid of a game, featuring first-person shooting action and third-person platforming bits. It brings new meaning to the term "live ammunition"... the things you fire at enemies are actually living creatures! Any game that allows you to shoot wasps at things has to be worth playing.

There you go, then. Four classic games, one classic series. Yours for the taking. You probably know the drill by now, but if you don't... go and plug this post somewhere relevant, and then come back here and post a comment telling me where you've put it. That'll put you in the draw... go for it!

Monday, 26 December 2011

On the seventh day of Christmas, A Gamer Forever Voyaging gave to me... seven Grand Theft Autos.

OK, as giveaways go, this one is pretty epic. Seven Grand Theft Autos? How much game is that? Enough to last you until next Christmas, if you're so inclined...

So, what the fuck is in this fucking Grand Theft Fucking Auto giveaway, then? Here's what you can win:

You'll never catch me, coppers! Oh, wait...

Grand Theft Auto (the first one ever!).
Grand Theft Auto 2.
Grand Theft Auto III.
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City.
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.
Grand Theft Auto IV.
Grand Theft Auto: Episodes from Liberty City (GTA IV add-on comprising of The Lost & The Damned and The Ballad of Gay Tony).

See how fucking nice I am? Giving someone all that lot? That's not just a pile of fucking videogames, it's a fucking history lesson. And for nothing, too. Well, almost nothing... all it costs is a bit of spamming of this blog, somewhere on that there internet, and a post in the comments telling me where you've posted it. Easy. Oh, and you'll need Steam, too.

You're looking very earnest there. What?

I haven't played a lot of Grand Theft Auto, myself. I played the first one when it came out... I enjoyed the APB-style viewpoint, but I can't say I ever played it properly, instead finding great delight in just running people over. After that, I never really saw the appeal. I left GTA2 alone altogether. GTAIII, I bought on the PC. I did have a reasonable go at that, enjoying the free-roaming aspect of the city and the amusing radio stations.

Then came the real game-changer... Grand Theft Auto: Vice City. Seller of eleventy-billion copies, everyone's played it. Except me... I rented it from Blockbuster when I lived in the States, but the disc was scratched, and I only got five minutes into the game. They didn't have any more copies in when I took it back, and I've never bothered with it since. Sacrilege!

I'll be honest, I have no idea what's going on here. But I like it.

Not only that, but I've never played San Andreas at all. I think just about every friend I have has raved about it, but it's never appealed to me at all. Someone's going to have to try and talk me into it at some point, but nothing about that game grabs me. I'm really selling this giveaway, aren't I?

When GTA IV came out, I took the day off work. I got an early bus to town, stood outside Woolworths with a couple of other likely fellows, and bought it as soon as the shop opened. I savoured the opening sequence, took time to familiarise myself with the controls and the city, sat in my apartment watching the telly (hilarious stuff).

I love a bit of California Games...

Once I started to actually play, I did really enjoy it... it was worth taking the day off for. Until the point where I missed a mission trigger, that is. Then, I spent three hours wandering around with nothing happening. And you know what? Those three hours killed the game for me. Once I realised what had happened, my enthusiasm for the game had gone, and it didn't come back. What a shame.

Still, it's an epic, alright. And with two highly-rated add-on packs coming with it (highly-rated by one of my mates, anyway... he loved them), there's a ton of gaming to be had. I actually own those add-ons on the 360... I do feel like getting back into GTA IV.

Shefki Kuqi was growing increasingly frustrated at his lack of first-team opportunities.

I can't imagine there are many people out there that don't own at least one Grand Theft Auto game. So the chances are that if you enter this giveaway, you're going to be duplicating something. Not to worry though... when you're getting it gratis, that's a nice problem to have. Want a shot at winning? Just post a link to this blog entry somewhere, then post in the comments, letting me know where. Make sure it's a gaming-related place where you plug it though (or Twitter)... there's not much point putting it on Alan Titchmarsh's forum. Cheers, and good luck!

On the sixth day of Christmas, A Gamer Forever Voyaging gave to me... six Vs a-slaying.

Hey! Whaddya know? I'm revisiting another game! And this time, it's the rather wonderful VVVVVV.

I've actually written about this twice before... the first time was on 28th March 2010, which was when I first played the game. Wow. Was it really as long ago as that? The second time was when it made it into my top 10 games of 2010. It really is that good.

Because it's Christmas, I'll be nice and not show any spikes.

There's not much I can say about VVVVVV that I haven't said in those two earlier posts. Run around a spaceship full of spikes to try and rescue your crew. You can't jump, though. You can flip gravity, which is your jumping alternative. And you'll die a lot. That's the game, right there.

As if it didn't sound old-school-awesome enough, it's very Commodore 64-ish in style, so if you had a beige breadbin in your youth and don't own this game already (and are a Steam user), post a link to this giveaway somewhere, then post in here telling me where you've done the deed. That'll give you a chance to win the magnificent VVVVVV!

On the fifth day of Christmas, A Gamer Forever Voyaging gave to me... five (thousand) gold rings...

Alright, I haven't played this game. I've played the demo on the 360, which had some very nice graphics (maybe too nice...) and whizzed around at a fair old rate. And I bought the 360 version for my nephew, on the 360. Hang on a minute, what am I talking about? Why, Sonic Generations, of course!

Ring-a-ding-ding! Sonic does what he loves best.

That's right, you can win yourself a PC copy of the latest Sonic the Hedgehog game (on Steam)! And what's more, by all accounts, it isn't shit! So it must be well worth your while getting hold of this one.

Anyway, it sounds like fairly typical Sonic fare, but with a few twists along the way. Race at breakneck speeds through familiar and unfamiliar landscapes, collect gold rings, jump on robot heads, battle bosses. That's how it's been for 20 years, and it's been massively successful (commercially, although not always critically). You wouldn't expect it to change, but at least they try to freshen it up on the new consoles.

Neeeeeeeooooownnnnnng! This thing really moves!

So, are you a Sonic fan? Do you want this game? It's averaging 82 on Metacritic, which ain't bad at all. Why not post in here to discuss Sonic the Hedgehog in general? And then, enter the giveaway... spam this giveaway in an appropriate gaming place, and then let me know in here where you've done the deed. Once you've followed those steps, you're in with a shout!

On the fourth day of Christmas, A Gamer Forever Voyaging gave to me... four calling birds?

When I first started this blog, I had the intention of occasionally going back to a game I'd written about, revisiting it and posting my thoughts on the game once I'd completing it. You know how many times I've done that so far? None. Not once. I might have written about a game more than once, but not in a retrospective manner. But that's changing today.

Aaahhh... there's nothing like a warming winter fire.

The game I'm giving away today is Alpha Protocol, a game I first played on the XBox 360 and first wrote about on August 15, 2010. I really enjoyed it then, and fully expected to play it to completion... but then, as usual, I was distracted by the shiny and the new, and Alpha Protocol was put on the back burner.

Something about it kept jabbing away at my brain, though, and I kept getting the urge to play it. And so I would, for an hour or so, making a little progress and then putting it away again. It's not the ideal way to play any game, especially one that's so heavily story-oriented. And then, last month, I started it up yet again, but got hooked enough to get to the end.

Something tells me she could be a bit of a... pistol? Does it look like she's got nice... guns? Austin Powers has got nothing on me.

Alpha Protocol is billed as "The Espionage RPG". And indeed, there's an element of role-playing to it, with you earning points so that you can level-up your skills throughout the game. Depending on what you choose to improve, you can either be a suave and sophisticated ladies' man, with a silver tongue and smooth-as-silk stealthy movement. Or you can be a brutal crack-shot agent, with awesome hand-to-hand skills to match.

A lot of people online complained about the poor nature of the gunplay and the stealth in Alpha Protocol. And yes, initially, there's a fair bit lacking. The controls are woolly, aiming isn't especially accurate and there are frustrations in the way you're led down certain pathways, with scope for exploring levels pretty much eliminated.

Oh no! Such carnage! What a waste of arcade machines!

But if you persevere, you'll be rewarded. Many of these elements improve as your levelled-up abilities improve, making the game more fun to play. But that's only the half of it...

The real star of this game is the dialogue, or rather, the way the dialogue is handled. There's a lot of talking here, but it's all necessary, and it's done in a way that makes the game quite gripping. It's certainly more intriguing than your average game, I feel. There are many characters to interact with, and when talking with them, rather than give you a choice of lines to speak, you're given a choice of mannerisms. The way you respond determines your success.

Look at that expression. You'd think I'd come home at 4am with lipstick on my collar.

It could be disastrous, but it really works incredibly well. You have to get to know each character you're interacting with, so that you know how to stroke them in order to get what you want, or how to wind them up until they snap. And depending on how your interactions go, you might or might not open up other missions or opportunities.

I really feel that this is a brilliant engine, and although Alpha Protocol does have its share of gameplay weaknesses, it really is worth sticking with until the end. Not only that, I'm planning to replay it in a completely different way, to see how else it might play out. There won't be a sequel, but the premise and conversation system is so good it would be a real shame if it didn't get used again.

Surely if "Headslam" is an option, you'd use it every time?

You can see just what I'm talking about, if you own a PC and use Steam. I'm giving away a copy of Alpha Protocol on Steam. All you have to do is post a link to this piece somewhere appropriate (Twitter, gaming forum etc.), and add a comment here letting me know how you've plugged me, and you'll be in the draw. Good luck!

Oh... four calling birds? Well, there's an Achievement in the 360 version for "romancing" the four main female characters in the game. And as they call you regularly in the game... well, there you go!

On the fourth day of Christmas, Sky sent to me...

... a plug.

My blog, and the giveaways, were derailed when my internet connection went up the Swanee on day four. After a couple of phone calls to Sky, my ISP, they said they would send me something in the post. I figured it would be a new router, but it turned out to be a plug for the router. I was a bit dubious, but whaddya know, it worked!

Internet connection restored, I can get on with the giveaways, but it's all out of sync now (and I wasn't doing any on Christmas Day, sorry!).

I've got some brilliant stuff to give away... well, I think it's brilliant. So please, to make it more fun, publicise it wherever you feel it's appropriate. That's your ticket to winning stuff anyway, so go for it!

Friday, 16 December 2011

On the third day of Christmas, A Gamer Forever Voyaging gave to me... three hitmen

I'll be honest with you, Hitman was not a game that was on my radar when it was first released. The word "stealth" was tied heavily to it, and that's not usually a gaming trait that sits well with me. But my missus, believe it or not, quite fancied it, and so it was bought and installed on our PC. And whaddya know, I quite enjoyed it!

Hmmm. Could have done without seeing that.

I always found it a bit odd that you play a top-class stealthy assassin... with a big barcode tattooed on the back of his head. Surely that's just drawing attention to yourself? Grow some hair. Wear a hat. Wear a scarf. Anything that doesn't make you look so distinct... it's not exactly a common design, is it? I bet Sam Fisher hasn't got a barcode tattoo.

Anyway, the object of this game (and in fact, the series of games) is to take out a number of specified targets across the globe. It's alright, they're all evil... you're doing the world a favour, so you can sleep with a clear conscience.

There. Nobody will look twice at you now. Oh, wait...

I mentioned that stealth is a big part of the game, and that I'm not a stealth fan... perhaps the reason that I enjoyed Hitman is that you can (and should) also use disguises! I'm not exactly talking comedy moustaches and silly outfits here (but could it really be any worse that a barcode tattoo?)... instead, you can incapacitate citizens and take their clothes. In so doing, you blend in... as long as you don't do anything out of character for that outfit...

This is a really interesting aspect to the game, one that I found refreshingly different from the usual "hide in the shadows" guff. Couple this with what I thought was a genuinely interesting storyline, and it's easy to see why Hitman was, erm, a hit.

In a quiet moment, Agent 47 plays at being David Beckham.

There are new Hitman games on the way, but what better way to tide yourself over than with three, yes, THREE Hitman games for the PC? I'm giving away The Hitman Collection on Steam for one lucky reader. This includes Hitman: Codename 47, Hitman 2: Silent Assassin and Hitman: Blood Money. Not bad, for nothing! All you have to do is plug this blog somewhere appropriate (Twitter, your favourite gaming forum etc.), and then make a post here telling me where you spammed me, and you're in the draw! Good luck!

Thursday, 15 December 2011

On the second day of Christmas, A Gamer Forever Voyaging gave to me... two Rayman gloves

Recently, I've been playing the XBox 360 demo of Rayman Origins. It's lovely. Proper, old-school 2D platforming, with gorgeous graphics, great level design and lashings o'fun. I liked it so much, I've bought the game as a family Christmas treat.

Hey! Watch what you're doing with that thing!

But Christmas is still nearly two weeks away! What if I can't wait that long? Well, I could always head over to, where it's possible to buy PC versions of the first three Rayman games!

The first game in the series was just called "Rayman", obviously enough, and was released on a number of formats. PC owners, though, saw a number of updates. Rayman Gold added a load of new levels, and then Rayman Forever was released, and that included fan-made levels alongside the content of Rayman Gold. Plenty of bang for your buck then... and that's the game I'm giving away this time.

The key to this lies in those white fists...

The plot of Rayman Forever sees you, looking like the weirdest snooker referee of all time, having to save your world. "What's wrong with it?", I hear you ask. Oh, the usual platform game stuff... an evil dark being has stolen the world's provider of harmony and balance! In so doing, he has allowed a range of freakish creatures to infiltrate the world, and they are capturing all the Electoons!

If this sounds bad, well, it is. It's all a bit nonsensical too, but that doesn't matter... all you need to know is you have to leap around gorgeous levels, rescuing some cute critters and smacking around some other cute critters. This is fairly simplistic to begin with, but you gain extra powers and abilities as you progress, making critter-smacking even more fun.

*whistle* Do you think if I ignore it, it'll go away?

Rayman Forever is a classic platformer, although there's not a lot in there that's new. In fact, it takes many of its ideas from existing classics (Ristar is one game that springs to mind... I think it's the hands...). It does, though, bundle those ideas together with wit and charm, and in doing so creates a classic game in its own right. It's well worth a few hours of your time, and of course, one of you can do it for free! Just post a link to this somewhere relevant (Twitter, gaming forum, wherever you hang out), and post a comment here telling me where you've posted it, and you'll be in the draw! Good luck!

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

On the first day of Christmas, A Gamer Forever Voyaging gave to me... A Game Called The Mark Of Kri.

I'm too good to you lot. Last year, I did A Game A Day Advent Calendar, with a different game for each date in December. I loved the idea... but it was hard work, and really difficult to source games for every date! So I decided I couldn't do it again this year. The question was... what to do? Well, Christmas is a time of giving, so I'm going to give away games!

Loosely based on the Twelve Days of Christmas, there will be a range of items up for grabs, although mostly they'll be PC games, and most will require Steam. I hope that doesn't put too many off.

Awww, come on, ref, that must be a penalty!

OK, so having said all that, today's giveaway is a game that I suspect is a little bit underappreciated... The Mark of Kri on the PS2. I said "mostly" PC games, alright?

The Mark of Kri is a remarkable game. It was released quite early on in the PS2's life, and was a quite stunning looking affair, with some innovative gameplay. The story sees you as a hulking warrior who gets duped by some dodgy bloke into running an errand for him. When you get back from the errand, your home village has been destroyed and your sister kidnapped. You have no choice but to go and get her back... and this will mean killing those in your way.

Nothing like a good fight in the twilight.

The game looks fantastic, but it's the fighting system that really sets The Mark of Kri apart from the rest. Using your right stick, you can "sweep" the playing area, locking onto enemies before launching your attack. In this fashion, you can target your enemies more effectively, and you'll find yourself gracefully attacking the closest foe and then blocking an attack from the next in one fluid motion. It's quite glorious in execution, and makes the game great fun to play.

There are other elements here, too. Stealth plays a large part... despite your size, you can't just go blundering through the game. Sneaking up on enemies makes your task a little easier. It also looks better, as they're dispatched in surprisingly gory ways, for a cartoon animated game. You'll also learn to use new weapons, helping to keep the game fresh.

I think we all know what's going to happen here...

The Mark of Kri is a game I've enjoyed immensely over time, and now you can too. I'm giving away one (pre-owned) copy of The Mark of Kri. All you have to do to stand a chance of winning is to post a link to this article somewhere... anywhere. Twitter, your favourite gaming forum, wherever. Once that's done, post a comment here letting me know where you've spammed me, and you're in the draw! Yeah, it's a shameless attempt at getting more promotion for my blog. But at least my readers can get something out of it!