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The first Assassins Creed seems like a world away at this point. It was an ambitious open world game all about free-running and stabbing people in the neck. While it was quite harshly criticised for the repetitive nature of the optional side missions, it fared better commercially, and now the promised part two of the trilogy-in-progress is upon us. So Desmond’s strapping himself back into an animus chair and this time he’s channelling his Italian ancestor Ezio for an adventure that can only be described as “viale apprezzamento galassia molto indosso biancheria intima da donna” (which I have it on good authority means “really quite good”, cheers, Brian).

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Turn 10 Studio’s have just released  a software update for Forza Motorsort 3. The highlight of the new feature is the addition of gear shifting animations. So if you were one of the many who complained to Turn 10 about the lack of this then well done. Nice to see a developer listen to it’s fans and then act. Full list of what the update features past the break.

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As the main stream FPS move away from World War 2 and into Modern Warfare here is something to keep the Nazi vs Allies crowd calm. The latest game in the ‘General’ series comes to the Xbox Live Arcade and as a fan of the original Panzer/Fantasy General games on the PC I was hoping for more of the same. But with a release timed to coincide with the release of the Panzer General: Allied Assault board game I began to wonder what would be in store for me.

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Sometimes when your fellow castinites don’t want to come record their monotonous voices onto a solid state drive you need to revert back to the old school way of doing things. This weeks podcast is powered by wooden wheels and a steam engine, that’s right, Wugga and I ate some Mango Chicken Curry and a Limoncello Creme Brulee and we done recorded ourselves a duet. Such a sweet sweet harmony you haven’t heard in many a pod.

There is also a competition with in. The spoils are copies of games, the challenge will evoke the child within, so get out your crayons and Etch A Sketch, no skill required, artists need not apply.

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Sony has decided to put some serious testing behind the M.A.G Beta and have given a few Kiwi sites codes to distribute. If you would like one please continue reading to see if you meet the criteria.

  • Has Data – It takes approximately 3gig to get it all up and running. Make sure you have enough space on your HDD and in your broadband plan.
  • Is Kiwi – Must be living and playing in New Zealand
  • Love Blowing Shit up – Explanation not required.
  • Will fill in a survey if sent a code – it’s just to get some stats on who you use as your ISP.

If you meet these criteria then join on in and get a code. To get a code just do two things, sign up on the forum and then send an email (from the address you have registered on the forum) to magbeta@buttonmasher.co.nz, in the subject line include your forum username and in the body of the email your name and email address.

We will get the codes out as quickly as possible and hope to see you all online ready to kick some ass.

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New Super Mario Bros. Wii is the follow-up to New Super Mario Bros. released 3 years ago for DS, and is the first game in the series to feature on Wii. The formula is the same as you would expect, with signature side-scrolling action that will test even expert gamers, but several key changes to the game make it accessible for all – and you can even all play together with the new 4 player co-op mode allowing additional players to drop in or out with ease.

New Super Mario Bros. is one of my favourite games for the DS, with excellent challenging gameplay, and a decent number of varied levels. If you have played New Super Mario Bros. then you will feel right at home playing New Super Mario Bros. Wii. The basic controls and world structure are similar, and it is easy to jump right in and play without reading any manuals. The cheery music welcomes you back into the Mario world as your onscreen enemies bounce in time to the tunes.

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When showing off new television options in the 3.10 firmware, SCEE’s PlayStation.Blog accidently leaked a photo showing the TVNZ OnDemand logo in the PS3’s XMB. It was soon taken down but not before some kiwi commenters noticed it and demanded an explanation. James Thorpe, the original poster of the image had this to say:

“Sorry for the slow reply but I posted the TVNZ image inadvertently but I expect to be able to update you all properly soon.”

Judging by what the other countries are getting, the TVNZ OnDemand feature will most likely be the current video player which will be optimized for the PS3’s inbuilt Internet Browser. The leaked image is posted after the break.

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If you like the combination of furry things with shiny metallic round headed things then you are probably already a fan of the Ratchet and Clank series. Sony is celebrating the release of the latest instalment with a wicked competition running on the TVNZ website which finishes on the 28th, if you win, Weta Workshop will create your weapon and it will be all yours.

We don’t have the ability to make awesome looking weapons out of anything other than crappy deconstructed paper mache piñatas and plasticine, so we weren’t suprised when Sony didn’t buy our offer of Wugga hand crafting a unique plasticine replica of Captain Qwarks codpiece. Instead they promised to give us three copies to share with the ButtonMashing community. To win you just need to post a description of your ultimate Ratchet and Clank weapon, perhaps you could also enter the same thing in the TVNZ comp.  Go forth and create.