Before you can read this article you must download patch version 1.741A.5_and_a_smidge. This will allow the "read more" function to actually let you read more! It's been a busy week for us wonderful sim racers whom have a PS3. Not because we've been sim racing - no, no, no that would be silly. We've been busy installing tetrabytes of installation files and downloading further patches to upgrade our games on the day of release. Say what you will about the game, but in my humble little opinion if you're going to spend the entire life of a small furry animal making Gran Turismo 5, you might as well delay it another week if you have strange problems with online modes. Shame it hasn't yet fixed my general freezing issues. Maybe I'll just blame it on the snow in England... As a result, #5 won't really touch on Gran Turismo 5 at all purely because I've spent so long stuck on the GT screen, downloading patches, waiting 40 minutes for an install and general mucking about I can't really say anything conclusive yet! From what I have played though, it seems like a fan service. If you love the series, you should feel comfy in its sofa but if you never did see the fuss with the other installments (raises hand to half mast) then this will certainly not convert you over. Infact its that time of year where safety comes to the fore. Need for Speed Shift is a return to its roots, the latest Call of Duties, Fallout's, Fifa's and all other long running series are all declaring either very positive or record sales. This in turn is leading many developers and publishers to scale down their selection of games they release down to the "sure fire hit". If a yearly or bi-yearly update series can be made then its at half the production costs because the game engines are written and in 12 or 24 months, they'll get their profits again. All this, in a world still in admist of a recession is a shame because other series or ideas with a unique spin are now struggling to find their own space to survive the chop. I wonder if rFactor 2 was really the first rFactor, how would that have developed in today's climate? If iRacing wasn't already established, would as many people be as willing to shell out for subscriptions? While I'm on a moan of sorts, I'd like to pull out my soapbox and damn gaming retail stores for their awful lack of new release titles. Where I live in Pram Alley, Essex - we have two dedicated games stores. Why is it then that during the last month I've not been able to find four of the five titles I've wanted to support on release day in them? They too are now only supporting the yearly releases and a few other casual gaming games. Everything else is preowned because they get to keep all the profit. That in turn has now prompted a few developers to now include a fee to actually activate online modes if you buy a game second hand. Thanks for that... The last place on Earth I expect to find all the games I've been looking for is HMV, which is where I've found them all. Not that I bought them all there because some of the differences in prices are just too big to justify on wage. Back I trundle, online I shalt buy, retail loses again. What a lovely vicious circle we have. One final gripe I have is DLC that comes out on the release day of a game. I am mega excited for Nail'ed which is due to be released in February. I loved Pure (Disney goes Offroad - who'd have thought!) and this looks like more of the same, but to see the trophy/achievement list for a DLC pack already completed leaves a sour taste in my mouth. DLC in my mind should come later on to continue to add to a product and improve it. Split/Second has done this perfectly, waiting a few months and then adding on new tracks and modes for if you're a big fan. To me, that Nail'ed DLC pack is just as bad as the famous Resident Evil 5 gate where the DLC was already on the disc and you had to pay to unlock it. Bad game developers, one day it'll come back to haunt you. So how have I been getting this angst out of my system? Zombies!!! Two zombie driving related games have been released of late and both are rather nifty. For those of you whom have been around for a bit, you may remember when Carmaggedon first came out. The game was considered to graphic and violent it was called for to be banned! As a side note, you've got to love the man in the top left's face when you're going at full pelt! Anyway, after much controversy the game was released, generally panned by critics (what do they know anyhow!) but went on to sell quite well and spawn sequels. The first of the two games I've been playing is on PC and is called Zombie Driver, a top down racer which involves mowing down as many zombies as possible while racing ala micro machines. Zombie's splat quite nicely and you have different objectives per tournament. Some are just races, some are to kill as many zombies as possible, or as many competitors as possible. For £3.49, I was very impressed! The second is Blood Drive which I bought for PS3 but I believe its also on Xbox360 too. Developers Sidhe (who made the excellent Shatter is anyone enjoys bat and ball games, I give that three thumbs up) have harked back to the original Twisted Metal games but thrown hundreds of zombies running round the arenas. While the controls are a bit heavy and the graphics aren't up to much, the playability of the game is very high. I appear to be quite rubbish at it though, but that hasn't stopped me enjoying playing and losing so something must make the game tick! Pure arcade, pure cheesefest but very entertaining. Just whatever you do, don't try this at home! Once I've returned from my rampage, look forward to a zen-like episode 6!