Level Up! Looking forward to Darksiders II and Sleeping Dogs (Mania.com)

By:Tim Janson
Date: Thursday, August 09, 2012
Source: Mania.com

Well we are gearing up for the first big release week of the Summer as next week’s release slate includes Darksiders II, and Sleeping Dogs and I will have reviews of both games here at Level Up.  In addition, one of the all-time classics comes to the Nintendo 3DS with the release of New Super Mario Bros. 2.
In the News…
LittleBigPlanet Coming to PS Vita on Sept 25
LittleBigPlanet for PlayStation Vita will be hitting store shelves in North America on Tuesday, September 25th so in just a few short weeks fans will be able to experience Sackboy’s next adventure, set on the mysterious traveling planet of Carnivalia.  
Now Sackboy (or Sackgirl if you choose) is back in LittleBigPlanet for PlayStation Vita, a completely new, mobile adventure, filled with exploration and competition on the fairground planet of Carnivalia, where a mysterious Puppeteer is stealing all of the joy from the LittleBigPlanet universe.  Players must travel through a series of themed levels in a storyline driven adventure packed with thrills, spills, and hilarious moments to foil the Puppeteer’s evil plans and bring fun and laughter back to Carnivalia.  Customize Sackboy and the world around him with unique touch and camera Create tools that let you Play with more freedom than ever before.  Then discover an endless amount of user-created levels and games created by the LittleBigPlanet community, experiences that players can Share online via the PlayStation Network.  LittleBigPlanet for PS Vita will allow users to Play, Create, Share a multitude of different experiences at home or on the road, anytime, anywhere! 
First Trailer for Call of Duty Black Ops 2 Multiplayer

You’ve been itching to see it so finally it has been revealed! 


Amazon launches game studio
The retail giant has launched a new division, called Amazon Game Studios, which will focus (initially, at least) on social games, though expect it to branch into other areas in the months and years to come.
The game 'Living Classics' will be the first effort from the studio. Amazon describes the Facebook title as a "moving object game" where a family of foxes wanders into a series of classic books. Players reunite the family by exploring the scenes.
Players exiting World of Warcraft
World of Warcraft saw more than 1 million people cancel their subscriptions over the past three months, the game's publisher revealed in its quarterly earnings statement. That's one of the most dramatic drops in the game's long history. WoW has been losing customers for a while now, but has managed to plug those holes for the past six months or so, holding somewhere around the 10.2 million mark. It was just last March, however, that the game boasted 12 million subscribers.
Activision-Blizzard is hoping to reverse the trend later this year with the September release of the Mists of Pandaria expansion. It's the fourth expansion for the game, raising the level cap to 90.
"Mists of Pandaria contains the biggest variety of new content we've ever created for a World of Warcraft expansion, with features that will appeal to new players, veterans, and everyone in between," said Blizzard boss Mike Morhaime.
Due out next week
New Super Mario Bros. 2 (Nintendo) Rated E 3DS
Feel the rush of discovering tons of coins in brand new coin-rich worlds with the new Gold Mario, gold pipes, gold Fire Flowers, new block head Mario that transforms enemies into coins, and while challenging your friends in the new Coin Rush Mode. Can you get one million coins?

The Last Story (Xseed Games) Rated T  Wii
Embroiled in seemingly endless conflict, the Empire has been slowly weakened by the relentless onslaught of enemy forces. Despite the debilitated state of the mainland, however, a virtually impenetrable last line of defense stands proud and keeps hope alive for all the land. That beacon of hope is Lazulis Island, ruled by the renowned Count Arganan. With the employment of an army of weapons that magically –and mysteriously-- concentrates beasts into a single region, his island has become a small wonder for its powers. 
Among those coming to the island to seek their fortune is Zael, a young man who at an early age was orphaned when his homeland became one of the many victims of battle. Though he and his band of fellow mercenaries often face disdain and fear as they are perceived to be of a lower class, they manage to catch the eye of none other than Count Arganan himself. If they can successfully complete the tasks put before them by the Count, they may have a rare chance to gain the most honorable status that they have only dreamed of - knighthood. 
It is during one of these missions bestowed upon them that Zael discovers a hidden site, one which grants him a wondrous and yet familiar power to gather his enemies in one place… 
Darksiders II (THQ) Rated M  PS3, Xbox 360, PC
Darksiders II follows the exploits of Death, one of the four horsemen of the Apocalypse, in an action-packed tale that runs parallel to the events in the original Darksiders game. This epic journey propels Death across an expansive gameworld as he tries to redeem his brother, War, the horseman blamed for prematurely starting the Apocalypse in Darksiders. 
Like the original Darksiders game before it, the second game in the series is primarily a hack 'n slash adventure. The game takes place across netherworld environments, including "The White city," an outpost where angels live, and "The Eternal Throne," a floating fortress where the Lords of the Dead stand guard over souls that need to be cleansed. Although Death is the most feared of the Four Horsemen, his physical abilities are very different than his brother, War. Death is far more nimble, and relies on a combination of melee and ranged attacks. In combat Death's primary weapon is his huge iconic scythe, with a wide range of other weapons and usable items that must be gathered as the game progresses. Weapons can be dual-wielded, upgradable armor can be acquired for protection and Death has access to a terrifying and powerful pale mount. 

Sleeping Dogs (SquareEnix) Rated M PS3, Xbox 360, PC
Welcome to Hong Kong, a vibrant neon city teaming with life, whose exotic locations and busy streets hide one of the most powerful and dangerous criminal organizations in the world: the Triads.  In this open-world game, you play the role of Wei Shen, an undercover cop trying to take down the Triads from the inside. You'll have to prove yourself worthy as you fight your way up the organization, taking part in brutal criminal activities without blowing your cover. Torn between your loyalty to the badge and the code of the triads, you will risk everything as the lines between truth and honor become permanently blurred.


Wicked Audio Solus Headphones (Wicked audio)
I have to tell you that I just love the fact that over-the-ear headphones have made a comeback because I’ve never been a fan of earphones or earbuds.  With the Solus Headphones I feel like I’m back in the 80s with my big cushy headphones plugged into my stereo next to my bed so mom can’t hear how loud I have it cranked!  First, the Solus headphones are just incredibly comfortable.  The cups fit over your years with nearly 1” of foam.  This also makes them incredibly resistant to outside sounds.  Put these on and you are in your own dome of silence.  
A great convenience factor of the Solus Headphones is that the cups can collapse upwards to reduce their size by about half for easy carrying.  They even come with a neat carrying bag.  The nylon braided means you’ll never have to worry about your cord getting tangled.  And if you are a DJ, the Solus headphones are perfect as the cups can swivel so you can keep one cup over your year while listening to your outside sounds.  When doing so you can flip the switch on the volume control from Stereo to Mono.  As mentioned these have a built in volume control and the sound is fantastic even turned up to the max.  
The Solus headphones also have a great look as most Wicked items normally have.  The all black with red cord and accents makes for a stylish look.  About the only complaint is that I wish the cord were longer 3’.  They have a retail price of $125 but you can get them online much cheaper.  Amazon shows them currently for $52.29 and that is definitely worth it for these high quality, great sounding headphones.  Grade A-