Assassin's Creed III
FOR a game originally dedicated to stealth, the name is now almost meaningless. New ACIII hero Connor Kenway is no assassin. the days of painstakingly stalking prey are all but gone.
Not that ACIII is the worst for it, a vast, sprawling adventure set in 18th-century America during the Revolution. A sluggish prologue eventually gives way to some thrilling mayhem in the streets of Boston and the wilderness of the frontier.
Romping through history, including visits to the Boston Tea Party and Paul Revere, the overwhelming impression is of a deep and believable world with countless side quests to divert the player. Aided by a hearty multiplayer, ACIII contains enough adventure to last you past Christmas.
IMITATION is the sincerest form of flattery and what Microsoft has done here is pulled off a very fine facsimile of Halo, albeit built by a different team than the original creators, Bungie.
MS is so invested in the Halo universe that it created an entirely new company, 343 Industries, to produce a string of spin-offs. You can view that as a commitment to a much-loved franchise or a cynical exercise to wring as much profit as possible from a relatively shallow back-story.
You get what you expect with Halo 4 – a slickly produced but derivative sci-fi first-person shooter. Some new guns, new enemies and new locations can't disguise the fact that 343 has played safe with the Master Chief's return from limbo.
Perhaps that's why Bungie spurned the chance to do more Halo – they knew there was nowhere else to go with the franchise.
Dance Central 3
NO great surprises here either, a solid retread of an established formula. DC3 uses Kinect's motion-tracking to good effect in rating your ability to follow dance moves.
Perhaps the lack of online multiplayer is a bit annoying. But if you're after some party fun and don't have two left feet, DC3 has got the moves.
Resident Evil 6
RE5 veered the survival horror series into action territory, contradicting the awkward but tension-building set-ups of its predecessors. RE6 accelerates the trend but ends up at an awkward half-way house that has more in common with Gears of War.
Four different co-op campaigns add a sense of value to the proceedings but it might have been better to trim some fat and stick closer to the RE template.