Sharpen your competitive edge with these sports games.
FIFA Soccer 12
EA Sports (Xbox 360, PS3, PS2, PSP, 3DS) The good guy: Anyone who wants to kick some balls. The bad guys: CPU opponents with enhanced artificial intelligence, able to read your teammates’ strengths and weaknesses. The gear: Official uniforms and equipment for more than 500 teams. The gist: If you think the rough tackles in Madden NFL are wince-worthy, wait till you see players collide in FIFA 12. A new physics engine—two years in development—adds bone-crunching authenticity to this flagship soccer series. True physics govern every tussle, ensuring that battles for ball possession always have believable (rather than arbitrary) outcomes. Defenders now behave more cautiously, and even the dribbling system has been given an overhaul. You get a light touch in tight spaces and more time behind the ball to choose among passing, charging, or striking.
2K Sports (Xbox 360, PS3, PS2, Wii, PC, PSP) The good guys: Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, or [insert your own court hero here]. The bad guys: Online opponents with unstoppable monsters from the player-creation system (a cheat the developers say they’re fixing). The gear: The PlayStation Move controller adds point-and-shoot playability to the PS3 version. The gist: The follow-up to the finest basketball simulator ever created. The player models, stadium crowds, and overall presentation have been enhanced almost to the point of as-seen-on-TV fidelity. Support for the PlayStation Move controller lets less-hard-core players work the court while leaving one hand free for beer and chips.
Forza Motorsport 4
Microsoft (Xbox 360) The good guy: You, the speed freak. The bad guys: Hotshot human challengers in online racing modes. The gear: Hundreds of erotic cars from more than 80 makers. The gist: Racing isn’t your entire reason for existence in Forza 4, which encourages players to collaborate. Drivers can form car clubs with fellow gear heads and artists from the Forza community to turn out finely tuned autos emblazoned with dazzling custom designs. Plug in the Kinect motion sensor to stroll around a virtual garage of your creations, and bend down to peer under the hoods. The game really kicks into high gear once the show hits the road. Cars and courses are rendered with unparalleled detail at a superbly smooth 60 frames per second.
2011 Penthouse Holiday Gaming Survival Guide, Also See: