For those of you who are not aware, there is a sporting event happening in London in a few weeks known as the Olympics. Most of us will revel at the feats of athletic prowess and ability shown, hoping that our nation’s pride is upheld in any number of areas. For those of us who really wish we could participate, but were sadly born without the required talent or work ethic, another option has presented itself. The official game of the event has been released, and seeing as the only other Olympic game available has been Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games, hopefully this one can present an equally fun, but somewhat more grounded experience.
London 2012 has over 30 events, ranging from track and field, to archery and kayaking. You are able to participate as any one of 36 nations, including yes, South Africa. These events take the form of separate mini games, in which a certain number must be completed, and the player chooses which two at a time he wishes to play. Each event has a warm-up round, followed by the actual event; with the aim of course being to try and win as many medals as possible.
Events can be played either single-player, or multi-player, with the multi-player option either being co-operative or competitive. A nice touch is that you’re able to play on the same console with multiple controllers, making London 2012 much more of a party game, when there are few and far between these days. Your actual athletes can be modified and customised somewhat, but this is very limited in scope; and you’re probably better just to stick with the default characters.
Gameplay is actually fairly intuitive, with the button presses and movements required being as close a mimic of the actual action needed as you could imagine. When you have to dash and then throw your javelin at the correct angle, than you actually feel like you’re manoeuvring a real piece of equipment. You can also hook up your PlayStation Move or Kinect depending on your version, for added immersion into the game, which works very well a great deal of the time. Sadly though, with so many games on offer, sooner or later one of them will disappoint, and you will come across one or two that are incredibly frustrating. Mostly though, this arises out of poor AI or hit detection, and you notice them a lot less when playing with friends.
London 2012 is better than could have been expected and will provide a great deal of fun if playing with other humans. Playing with the AI gets somewhat tedious, but this game can be made to last for a good deal of time if played with a nice circle of friends, perhaps in your own couch potato-style Olympic championship.
These events are in the game:
3m Springboard Diving
3m Synchronised Springboard Diving
10m Platform Diving
10m Synchronised Platform Diving
Swimming – 50m Freestyle
Swimming – 100m Backstroke
Swimming – 100m Breaststroke
Swimming – 100m Butterfly
Swimming – 100m Freestyle
Trampoline (men only)
25m Rapid Fire Pistol (men only)
Track & Field
100m (men only)
110m Hurdles (men only)
200m (men only)
Discus throw (men only)
Javelin Throw (men only)
Long Jump (men only)
Shot Put (men only)
Triple Jump (men only)
Beach Volleyball (women only)
Canoe Slalom – K1 Kayak (men only)
Cycling – Keirin (men only)
Rowing – Single Sculls (men only)
Table Tennis (men only)
Weightlifting over 105kg (men only)