Alien: Isolation; Driveclub; Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor, gaming reviews

 

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The Independent Tech

Alien: Isolation

****

PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PC (£59.99)

It's an exhilarating feeling getting past that final locked door, knowing the dot on the motion tracker is closing in on you. It is, however, frustrating when you are gored from behind – made worse by manual save points achingly far apart. The unforgiving experience stays true to its origins by recreating the feel, look and atmosphere of its source material. At 15-20 hours, towards the closing stages, the game begins to waver in focus. Yet for those moments spent anxiously peering at a scouring embodiment of sheer horror, we finally have a definitive interpretation of the Alien mythos.

Oliver Cragg

Driveclub

***

PS4 (£59.99)

Driveclub is about as simple a racing game as you could find, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. It's catered to the online racer, the emphasis on forming clubs of drivers and taking on rival clubs in championship battles – career mode is reasonably simple. It's more of the mould of Need for Speed and the old Burnout games rather than Gran Turismo and Forza, but it lacks the variation that its rivals offer. The scenery is spectacular, but in challenges (barring drift races), you might get the feeling of déjà vu.

Jack De Menezes

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor

****

PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PC (£39.99)

This open-world, sandbox of assassination game is welcome after so many sub-par Lord of the Rings offerings. Gameplay is a mixture of Batman-like rhythmic fighting (block, counter, slash, jump and so on) interspersed with wraith moves such as shockwaves that push enemies away. All death matters: the more you die the more powerful they become. A visceral game and a side of Tolkien's world I'm glad to investigate.

Max Wallis

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