Play Magazine's Scores

  • Games
For 2,350 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 65% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 32% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 1.7 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Game review score: 76
Highest review score: 100 Command & Conquer: Generals
Lowest review score: 0 Dragon Ball Z: Taiketsu
Score distribution:
2350 game reviews
    • 63 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Exactly the game I wanted, delivered right when I needed it most...a great time with a great character in a great genre - plug and play, instant fun. [Apr 2004, p.56]
    • Play Magazine
    • 73 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    The feature-rich, action-packed gameplay—co-op and solo—is a blast, but it’s the explosive presentation, that literally sees Shanghai falling to flaming pieces all around you, that steals the show and will have you watching your—and your buddy’s—back.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    The feature-rich, action-packed gameplay—co-op and solo—is a blast, but it’s the explosive presentation, that literally sees Shanghai falling to flaming pieces all around you, that steals the show and will have you watching your—and your buddy’s—back.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    If ever there was a pure gamer’s game, Darksiders is it.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    If ever there was a pure gamer’s game, Darksiders is it.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Bayonetta’s across-the-boards perfection can’t be measured by any scale. It’s simply in a class by itself. This is where games need to go for my money. Platinum knows no bounds. A modern-day masterpiece.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    If you’re cool with just the DLR years and you can hang with the weird faces Dance the Night Away, but if you’re looking for a comprehensive VH compilation and accurate portrayals you might as well Jump, back into GH5.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    If you’re cool with just the DLR years and you can hang with the weird faces Dance the Night Away, but if you’re looking for a comprehensive VH compilation and accurate portrayals you might as well Jump, back into GH5.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    If you’re cool with just the DLR years and you can hang with the weird faces Dance the Night Away, but if you’re looking for a comprehensive VH compilation and accurate portrayals you might as well Jump, back into GH5.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    If you’re cool with just the DLR years and you can hang with the weird faces Dance the Night Away, but if you’re looking for a comprehensive VH compilation and accurate portrayals you might as well Jump, back into GH5.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The fourth instalment in the PixelJunk series is perhaps their best, but wherever you stand, this shooter with adventure elements is original and full of style.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Pandemic delivers one of their best efforts, offering an experience that innovates both the sandbox and WWII genres. It’s not without its flaws, but its slick action, cinematic style, and colorful characters rise above its shortcomings.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Pandemic delivers one of their best efforts, offering an experience that innovates both the sandbox and WWII genres. It’s not without its flaws, but its slick action, cinematic style, and colorful characters rise above its shortcomings.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    GT what? DiRT 2 is the real deal, capturing the thrill of rally racing in one hell of a slick package. Play it for the mud sliding physics alone.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    If you like Zelda—if what makes Zelda good for you is the Zelda-y stuff that’s always in these Zelda games—then you’re going to find more of it here. All the charm, all the polish. All the thoughtful puzzles and gorgeous detail. But if you’re looking for something new, you’re going have to wait until the next train arrives. This is another The Legend of Zelda game: The formula we know, the formula we love.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    It’s finally here. Big-time motocross and off-road racing with REAL dirt and separate bike and rider control... Rainbow Studios deliver a pot of pure gold.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    It’s finally here. Big-time motocross and off-road racing with REAL dirt and separate bike and rider control... Rainbow Studios deliver a pot of pure gold.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Mystery Case Files: Dire Grove is quite possibly the best-looking and most engrossing MCF title since 2007's Madame Fate.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    High praise for taking what felt like an idea in Assassin’s Creed and turned it into one of the year’s most ambitious and enjoyable games.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    High praise for taking what felt like an idea in Assassin’s Creed and turned it into one of the year’s most ambitious and enjoyable games.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    If you love fighting games, you should consider Clash of Ninja 3, regardless whether you love or hate Naruto. Until Tatsunoko vs Capcom hits next year, it might be as the box declares, the Best Fighting Game on the Wii.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    LittleBigPlanet makes a near seamless jump to the portable. While some of the content and gameplay is lost to the hardware's limitations, the presentation is as infectiously charming as ever. A robust campaign is rounded out by infinite content through user-created levels. SackBoy's new home is a perfect fit!
    • 87 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Can a game be worth purchasing without being brilliant? It depends on your wallet. The first few hours of multiplayer are going to be worth the sticker price, but the rest of the game is nearly inaccessible for four simultaneous gamers.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    But value and longevity be damned, it’s the emotional impact Modern Warfare 2 brings to the table that in the end deserves the highest of praise.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    But value and longevity be damned, it’s the emotional impact Modern Warfare 2 brings to the table that in the end deserves the highest of praise.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    A game very much in the spirit of the Japanese youth it portrays: sometimes unpredictable, often rough around the edges, yet never lacking in entertainment or charm.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    While lacking the polish and pacing of High Impact Games' Ratchet and Clank titles, The Lost Frontier is an easy recommendation for faithful fans, or even those just craving a solid platforming, puzzling, action-adventure. And the focus on air combat is something I hope to see in the duo's eventual PS3 outing.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Turn 10’s done a phenomenal job of crafting an experience that’ll appeal to all race fans. Whether you’re a car porn addict or just a gamer looking for a joy ride, Forza 3’s accessibility—anchored by fantastic difficulty scaling—depth, and breathtaking presentation put it neck and neck alongside the season’s other genre definers Need for Speed: SHIFT and Dirt 2.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    The pinnacle of everything that's made the series great from day one pulled together with sheer mastery and polished to a blinding sheen. Insomniac's finest work to date, and that's saying something. You're gonna love the way it looks, I guarantee it.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Atelier Annie is a charming and enjoyable little sim RPG that I wish had been more sim and less RPG.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 65 Critic Score
    No boundaries are pushed, but no crippling mistakes are made. Still, I say we abandon the status quo and further distinguish Western games from their brightly-colored Eastern counterparts. For mechs, I prefer rust to shine, and crude oil to cold fusion.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    This is how you do the basics. Solid, familiar JRPG that is better-than-good. And you get to fly around the earth in an awesome airship!
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Despite the pre-release co-op hype, this one’s just as entertaining for solo apocalypse survivors. While I wish more dialog was delivered through animated characters, it’s hard not to be taken in by the rest of what this ambitious shooter has to offer—great visual presentation, addictive leveling and looting, frenzied gunplay, four playable classes. Oh, and Mutant Midget Psychos.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Despite the pre-release co-op hype, this one’s just as entertaining for solo apocalypse survivors. While I wish more dialog was delivered through animated characters, it’s hard not to be taken in by the rest of what this ambitious shooter has to offer—great visual presentation, addictive leveling and looting, frenzied gunplay, four playable classes. Oh, and Mutant Midget Psychos.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Tropico 3 is a well-designed sim with just the right balance of complexity and micromanagement. It looks good, it sounds good and playing it just might teach you something. How many games can you say that about?
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    If you missed this one the first time out (for shame!), here's your chance to play the definitive version of not just the year's best portable offering, but one of the year's most engaging titles offered on any platform. It's a living, breathing Liberty City in the palm of your hand.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    If you’re not already familiar with tactics games then the beginning will seem unnecessarily difficult.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Some games need to be on your hard drive, for yourself, your family, your friends. Machinarium is one of them. It’s a supremely accessible, lavishly illustrated, and beautifully scored point and click adventure, with charmingly conceived (at times madly detailed) puzzles, genuine humor, and tin men with big hearts.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    There's never been anything like it and there may never be again. Brütal Legend is truly a gift to metal and game fans alike and my new, best 3D game ever.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    There's never been anything like it and there may never be again. Brütal Legend is truly a gift to metal and game fans alike and my new, best 3D game ever.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    An extraordinary video-game. It’s polished, entertaining, and unrelenting. The animation, the dialogue, and every environment is stunning. Video-games, as they are now, don’t get any better than this.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Delightful, skillfully made, and full of wonder, is far and away the best puzzle action game in years. What it lacks in technical prowess it more than makes up for with fluid animation, ingenious gameplay, and outstanding level design.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Magnacarta 2 has all the spectacle, expanse, drama, combat, and nuance of an epic turn-based RPG, and none of the worn out conventions. SOFTMAX’s seamless real-time battle and field systems, great ensemble cast and boundless character development make all the difference.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Half-Minute Hero is an example of what gaming can be when games are at their best; simple in concept, carefully crafted in design, and utterly excellent in execution.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    As real as it gets in the modern military shooter genre, Operation Flashpoint demands your mind be as sharp as your aim. Those seeking an FPS experience that's evolved passed Hollywood's version of war should definitely enlist, but anyone annoyed by one-shot deaths should probably stick to Call of Duty's frontlines.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    As real as it gets in the modern military shooter genre, Operation Flashpoint demands your mind be as sharp as your aim. Those seeking an FPS experience that's evolved passed Hollywood's version of war should definitely enlist, but anyone annoyed by one-shot deaths should probably stick to Call of Duty's frontlines.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    The word of mouth on this game is going to be great, unless your friends only play WiiFit. Demon’s Souls is what an 8-Bit game would play like if it were popped open and dumped out in your lap. Gorgeous, thoughtful, and complete unto itself, it’s the second-best title I’ve played this year. Maybe even better.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    As real as it gets in the modern military shooter genre, Operation Flashpoint demands your mind be as sharp as your aim. Those seeking an FPS experience that's evolved passed Hollywood's version of war should definitely enlist, but anyone annoyed by one-shot deaths should probably stick to Call of Duty's frontlines.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    A definite departure from rail-shooters of old, Extraction prioritizes storytelling and atmospheric pacing as much as alien slaying. However, if you just enjoy spilling extraterrestrial entrails, it does that really well, too.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Though its dungeons could have benefited from smarter design, I found Wizard of Oz to be a beautiful, whimsical adventure.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    The game might provide a fun, visceral thrill, at first. But by the end it becomes to mind-numbingly repetitive you may as well go gnaw on some flesh yourself.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    The game might provide a fun, visceral thrill, at first. But by the end it becomes to mind-numbingly repetitive you may as well go gnaw on some flesh yourself.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    This Katamari is forever. Still good, but stuck in its ways. Rolling up the cosmos is fun, even if the King and Robo-King scold you often. The 2D rolling mini-game at the credits is almost worth the price of admission.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    While Halo 3: ODST doesn’t wow you with innovation, breakthrough technology, or terrifically new gameplay, the campaign story is point blank better than Halo 3’s storyline; Firefight is an adrenaline rush so powerful you’ll need six-pack and a backrub just to settle down, and the multiplayer experience is still one of the best on the planet.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    The story that launched the series, finally presented to us Americans in the way it was always meant to be seen. Though I love what the Persona series has become, I will always adore this original chapter; and it’s still a hell of an experience even after all these years.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Game Arts’ new team has mad skills, Smash-Up is among the top three best Wii fighters going, and Karai is the best thing to happen to body armor since Samus took her helmet off. No bustiere though...but she sure looks good in gold!
    • 78 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Though not as slick or elegant as the classics it emulates, Dungeon Fighter Online is absolutely worth downloading, even if you only drop in for half an hour a day. The game’s cash shop items are certainly useful, but you’ll never have to spend a penny on DFO. Call a friend, smash some goblins, unlock new 2D fighting skills.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Wet
    One cinematic pulp action extraveganza starring a take-no-prisoners potty-mouthed pistol, comin’ up! A2M hit the bullseye with WET succeeding where others have failed by not overthinking the gameplay and letting the action and stylization do the talking.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Wet
    One cinematic pulp action extraveganza starring a take-no-prisoners potty-mouthed pistol, comin’ up! A2M hit the bullseye with WET succeeding where others have failed by not overthinking the gameplay and letting the action and stylization do the talking.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    There isn’t a single element of Arkham Asylum that isn’t polished to the utmost degree.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    SHIFT will disappoint those looking for Maggie Q and cop chases, but racing sim fans, looking for a solid alternative to Forza and the like, should buckle-up for Need for Speed’s new ride.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    SHIFT will disappoint those looking for Maggie Q and cop chases, but racing sim fans, looking for a solid alternative to Forza and the like, should buckle-up for Need for Speed’s new ride.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    SHIFT will disappoint those looking for Maggie Q and cop chases, but racing sim fans, looking for a solid alternative to Forza and the like, should buckle-up for Need for Speed’s new ride.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Resident Evil 5 should be the perfect type of game to use with 3D Vision glasses, and now we can confirm that it is. With upgraded textures and effects, new Mercenary modes and character costumes, and superior control options, it’s another outstanding PC outing for Capcom.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    With less focus on micromanagement and a solid, cohesive story, there's a lot more action this time around for Marvel's action-RPG franchise.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    With less focus on micromanagement and a solid, cohesive story, there's a lot more action this time around for Marvel's action-RPG franchise.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Scribblenauts is a game that will be remembered for a long time. It’s a genesis event. In the history of games, there are few moments where a new genre appears; few dates where something truly novel is given to gamers. Scribblenauts is a birth. It’s Wolfenstein 3D. It’s Mario 64. Scribblenauts is Street Fighter.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Other than Princess Crown and Odin Sphere (which were equally superior in their time), Muramasa defies comparison. The art and animation throughout is so refined it almost seems unfair, the gameplay is intuitive and never grows old; the RPG elements are unique and superbly presented and the score is simply mesmerizing.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Mini Ninjas is simply wonderful on PS3 and 360. An original break-the-mold adventure filled with tight, constantly evolving action spread across 6 super cool ninja, and more (and better) exploration than the majority of open-worlds. Biggest surprise yet, this year.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Mini Ninjas is simply wonderful on PS3 and 360. An original break-the-mold adventure filled with tight, constantly evolving action spread across 6 super cool ninja, and more (and better) exploration than the majority of open-worlds. Biggest surprise yet, this year.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    GT what? DiRT 2 is the real deal, capturing the thrill of rally racing in one hell of a slick package. Play it for the mud sliding physics alone.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    GT what? DiRT 2 is the real deal, capturing the thrill of rally racing in one hell of a slick package. Play it for the mud sliding physics alone.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Slick sci-fi palettes, strong sound design and stable performance pull you into Section 8. Sub-orbital drops, zippy character movement and effortless mission tracking make navigation dynamic and fun. A scarcely adequate campaign means life for S8 proceeds online, where teamplay is rewarding, the loadout system is fairly nuanced, and both 360 and PC enjoy detailed multiplayer portals.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The premier weapon-wielding fighter jumps to the portable with nary a hitch. Oh, and you can kick pretty-boy Siegfried's ass as Kratos!
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Despite being a bit burned out on the whole music-game craze, Guitar Hero 5's new features and ear-pleasing track list had me strumming and drumming on the plastic instrument peripherals all over again...and having a great time doing it.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Despite being a bit burned out on the whole music-game craze, Guitar Hero 5's new features and ear-pleasing track list had me strumming and drumming on the plastic instrument peripherals all over again...and having a great time doing it.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Despite being a bit burned out on the whole music-game craze, Guitar Hero 5's new features and ear-pleasing track list had me strumming and drumming on the plastic instrument peripherals all over again...and having a great time doing it.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Despite being a bit burned out on the whole music-game craze, Guitar Hero 5's new features and ear-pleasing track list had me strumming and drumming on the plastic instrument peripherals all over again...and having a great time doing it.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Fantastic atmosphere, setting and story will chill your bones and nerves. But spotty controls and some tedious pacing keep Cursed Mountain from reaching its full potential.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    There isn’t a single element of Arkham Asylum that isn’t polished to the utmost degree.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    There isn’t a single element of Arkham Asylum that isn’t polished to the utmost degree.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Slick sci-fi palettes, strong sound design and stable performance pull you into Section 8. Sub-orbital drops, zippy character movement and effortless mission tracking make navigation dynamic and fun. A scarcely adequate campaign means life for S8 proceeds online, where teamplay is rewarding, the loadout system is fairly nuanced, and both 360 and PC enjoy detailed multiplayer portals.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    All three Metroid Prime games in one box, for 50 bucks, pumped through the wide-screen framing of the Wii and controlling with its Remote. You make the call.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Hits the mark as a sparkling XBLA action game, but misses the target as a Super Metroid/SotN-level experience.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Borrowing some of the better elements from other games in the genre, Fossil Fighters manages to make it all fit together like T-Rex skeleton on display at the museum. Only with the game, you're encouraged to play with the exhibits.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Whether you live to jump or not, if you can stifle your inner graphics goblin long enough to get a sense of what Brave has to offer, you might be surprised at just how engaging a well-polished PS2 port can be on 360. If only there could have been a 360 or PS3 version, Brave might have soared considerably higher.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    It’s not without its flaws, but Joe manages to pack in plenty of third-person, fast-paced arcade-flavored fun. Addictive co-op, power-ups galore, and thumb-numbing action make it much more a modern-day Contra than another lame licensed effort.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    It’s not without its flaws, but Joe manages to pack in plenty of third-person, fast-paced arcade-flavored fun. Addictive co-op, power-ups galore, and thumb-numbing action make it much more a modern-day Contra than another lame licensed effort.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Either single player or online, Fat Princess delivers excellence in every way. The single player is quite short and should be looked at more like a tutorial for the very deep multiplayer aspect. If there were one thing I’d like to see added to Fat Princess it would be split-screen local multiplayer, other than that I can’t complain.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    A wider variety of backgrounds would be nice, but the gear-works within them change and evolve at a rate that the makes the sameness fade away. Gameplay this pure, this tuned, and this fun is rare indeed, and the ‘S-Man himself is a total blast.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    I can’t sing Cing’s praises loud enough. Little King’s Story is the freshest Wii game since de’ Blob and a return to the kind of Japanese development that made me fall in love with games in the first place.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    If you’re thinking of picking up the game, go into it knowing about the steep difficulty of the story mode, and try out the demo first. I recommend the game with the caveat that you may never obtain the skills needed to see the end of the story, just like arcade games of old.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    On the outside this may look like just another flavor of Bit.Trip Beat, but don’t let that sway you. Even though artist Gaijin used the same colors of paint on their canvas, the result is wonderfully different.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Call of Juarez: Bound in Blood is a thematic triumph that makes you look past the gameplay lumps. Come for the western fantasy, revel in the visual presentation and get a decent shot of first-person action in between.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Call of Juarez: Bound in Blood is a thematic triumph that makes you look past the gameplay lumps. Come for the western fantasy, revel in the visual presentation and get a decent shot of first-person action in between.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Call of Juarez: Bound in Blood is a thematic triumph that makes you look past the gameplay lumps. Come for the western fantasy, revel in the visual presentation and get a decent shot of first-person action in between.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Fire is the new dust, and BlazBlue is the new hotness of the fighting game world. Still a bit hard to fully grasp at first for newbies, but don't let that scare you off.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Fire is the new dust, and BlazBlue is the new hotness of the fighting game world. Still a bit hard to fully grasp at first for newbies, but don't let that scare you off.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Straightforward, addictive, surprisingly complex. Don’t approach if you’re unwilling to part with many, many hours of your life, probably without your consent.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    The seminal Wii FPA has arrived, loaded with top-fuel Wii tech, consistent, persistent, decidedly well-designed and executed gameplay, an excellent soundtrack, and enough originality to separate it from the first-person pack.

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