Something for the weekend?

With the average game length estimated to be 10 hours, you could probably finish 90 percent of the games out there during the space of a weekend if you have a jug of coffee and a big bag of sweets by your side. But what if you have housework to do or errands to run? Then you’ll need one of these games:

Earth Defence Force: Insect Armageddon
Estimated Play Time: 3 hours

Slack on content, especially when compared to the last Earth Defence Force, but a lot of reviewers felt that it was worthy of praise due to its relentless nature. Once you get a homing weapon there isn’t a great deal to it other than running around in circles firing missiles into the air.

Be sure to: start a two-player survival game and then kill the other player to get an achievement for incapacitating a teammate.

Estimated Play Time: 4 hours

THQ’s heavily scripted shooter gives you the chance to protect America while fighting off Korean invaders. It flows nicely but there’s not much in the way of a plot and not a great deal of achievements for playing single-player. The recently announced sequel should walk all over it – it’s being developed by Crytek UK.

Be sure to: bag a precious extra achievement by killing 25 enemies with melee attacks on the first level. Also: talk to everybody at the Oasis safe house and throw yourself off the Golden Gate Bridge on the final level for two other achievements.

Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days
Estimated Play Time: 4 hours

This isn’t a game for everybody. Not due to having a grizzly nature, including a torture scene involving razor blades, but because the screen has a rather nauseating filter effect to make it look like a bootleg video. It does feel rather cinematic in places though. Make a shotgun your weapon of choice and get the knack of sprinting through Shanghai and you can finish it in one (long) sitting.

Be sure to: try out the arcade mode. It’s actually pretty innovative and unpredictable, with the AI turning their backs on their team mates and killing them to make off with more loot. Think along the lines of the start of The Dark Knight, but in videogame form.

Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter
Estimated Play Time: 4 hours

An old game, and thus now very cheap. The trick to finishing this one quickly is to cheat – even with cheats on achievements will unlock. Annoyingly though, when finishing a level on hard mode you don’t get the achievements for normal. Worth a play just to see how far shooters have come over the past five years.

Be sure to: play it on hard mode to get the most Gamerscore out of it.

Iron Man 2
Estimated Play Time: 4 hours

I’m incredibly pleased I only paid £5 for this movie tie-in. I started it at 6pm on evening and finished it by 11pm. That was with stopping to cook and eat dinner too. It’s better than the first game but feels very rough around the edges, and obviously, it’s on the short side. Iron Man fits into the world of videogames snuggly, so it’s crazy that nobody has managed to make a decent game starring Stark yet.

Be sure to: destroy most of the structures in Shatalov’s base to get an easy achievement.

Transformers: Dark of the Moon
Estimated Play Time: 5 hours

Clearly put together on a tight deadline. The later levels feel very padded out, full of long dull corridors. It’s far from terrible though. In fact, you could even say that it’s pretty good with each level feeling different to the last.

Be sure to: try the multi-player mode. Don’t go thinking that the achievement for reaching the maximum rank will take ages to get – I managed to get it in just over an hour. Unbelievable, really.

Army of Two: The 40th Day
Estimated Play Time: 5 hours

Another set in Shanghai but not quite as brainless as above. Casual mode is just that, with enemies that can be gunned down in seconds. Stick to upgrading one rifle to the max and use it as your main weapon – you won’t need anything else. Quite an underrated game, with a nice solid feel. A big improvement over the sterile original.

Be sure to: play ‘Rock, Paper, Scissors’ with your buddy by pressing Y when no enemies are around. Win three times in a row to get another you know what.

Estimated Play Time: 5 hours

A very simple shooter that looks good but offers very little other than pretty explosions. The few cut-scenes on offer are mercifully short, there are no puzzles and as soon as you die you restart instantly. All of these factors make Bodycount a very swift experience. You can run past most enemies too. Oh and it hands out achievements like penny sweets.

Be sure to: make good use of the mines by throwing them at enemies as they run towards you.

NB: We’ve used the Xbox 360 versions as reference here but in most cases PlayStation 3 versions have trophies for achieving the same goals.

Matt Gander

Matt is Games Asylum's most prolific writer, having produced a non-stop stream of articles since 2001. A retro collector and bargain hunter, his knowledge has been found in the pages of tree-based publication Retro Gamer.

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  • ‘Worth a play just to see how far shooters have come over the past five years.’

    Is this the equivalent of drinking piss to appreciate the taste of champagne?

  • Point taken, however I was disappointed to discover that LiDL bubbly is actually £15.99 a bottle :(

  • Blimey, there are cheats available for GRAW? I might dig that out again, I miss kicking back on Doom with the old IDDQD and IDKFA codes and just romping through the levels.
    It bored me senseless when I first tried it (years ago, was only a fiver then) so this might mean I get some use out of it – Cheers for that!

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