'World Cup,''MotoGP' too realistic for their own good

It's funny. Sometimes, I love realism in video games -- and sometimes I hate it. To wit:

I used to crave soccer games. They were fake and easy. You would merely point your joystick in the direction of a goalie, pass the ball to a teammate, then shoot away. Scoooore!

But soccer games have turned so realistic, they bum me out. The ultra-realistic "2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa" feels just like real soccer -- which I despise.

(Now look, all you soccer lovers: I'm glad for you. Just leave me out of it.)

When I'm on offense, I try to dribble and pass the ball downfield. But usually, the other team steals the ball with little effort, and that is insanely realistic and insanely frustrating. So I throw my hand controller like a child.

That said, I can still review this game objectively. It's obviously quite good technically. It flows well. It's easier than ever to control your players and to kick the ball where you want.

It comes with the 199 teams of the World Cup. And you can play tournaments online. In other words, it is a perfect soccer game, unless you hate soccer.

I also used to love motorcycle games. They were fake and fun. Now you get something like "MotoGP 09/10," in which you race around boring tracks on motorcycles that barely stay on tracks, if at all, because (duh) racing is hard.

In fact, I can't keep bikes on tracks without pressing a button to keep my butt "tucked" on my bike.

So I suffer the following silly cycle. I must A) constantly ride the brakes to keep from flying off of hairpin turns. But that leads to B) the brakes' destroying my tires, which leads to C) me losing, which D) makes me start over from scratch, which E) makes me angry, which F) makes me write this angry review.

If you're really good at motorcycle simulators (as opposed to less-realistic racers), then give this thing a shot. If not: Feel my pain.

All of which brings us to "Super Street Fighter IV." It is silly. It is very fake. It is standard-issue fun. You portray cartoon people with cartoon muscles, beating up other cartoon fighters. Simple. Smooth. Entertaining.

It's an updated version of last year's fighting hit, "Street Fighter IV." But now, you can play any of the characters immediately (instead of having to win fights to unlock them).

Plus, there are more characters, more background settings to fight in, different music and crisper visuals.

To be blunt, I don't know why I love realism in some games and hate it in others. I mean, "Tiger Woods" games have gone uber-realistic, and I obsess over them. "Madden" football games are realistic, and they're usually great.

On the other hand, I used to date this woman who was loads of fake fun. There's a time and a place for fake things, is all I'm saying.

("2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa" by EA retails for $60 for PS 3 and Xbox 360; $50 for Wii; $40 for PSP -- Plays fun, if you like contemporary soccer games/simulators. Looks great. Challenging. Rated "E." Three and one-half stars out of four.)

("MotoGP 09/10" by Capcom retails for $50 for Xbox 360 and PS 3 -- Plays fun only, perhaps, if you like racing simulation. Looks passable. Very challenging. Rated "E" for mild suggestive themes. Two stars.)

("Super Street Fighter IV" by Capcom retails for $40 for PS 3 and Xbox 360 -- Plays very fun. Looks very good. Challenging. Rated "T" for alcohol reference, mild language, suggestive themes and violence. Three stars.)