Sept 27 - Oct 1

As we head into what feels in many ways like the first big game release week of the impending holiday season, there is no shortage of big games to consider for Game of the Week. Though, I have to admit in some ways that I am not as excited about this time of the year as I normally am.

Maybe it's that there's no one big shining game on the horizon that I absolutely have been lusting over for months or years. More likely, it's that the year as a whole has been pretty solid with relatively few dry spells. Either way, I'm just not feeling it like I usually do as September wanders aimless and cold into the dying arms of mid-autumn.

My game of the week this week is Dead Rising 2, but I honestly don't see myself dropping sixty bones just to smack around zombies with a kayak paddle for three hours. In some ways, I'm as enthusiastic for Hydrophobia on XBLA or Battle vs Chess. Even looking further on down the line, Rock Band 3 is pretty much my only must-have this season.

I hate to say it, but I kinda liked it better with months of boring summer releases only to have winter sitting there like a cold, shining beacon. It just doesn't seem right to be halfway through September, and almost wishing that the industry would slow down for a few months so that I can get caught up. Call me crazy, but 2010, you're doing it wrong!

In the meantime, give it up for Dead Rising 2, this week's Game of the Week. Yip-pee.

PC
- Battle vs. Chess
- Dead Rising 2
- Final Fantasy XIV
- Front Mission Evolved
- Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light

Xbox 360
- Battle vs. Chess
- Dead Rising 2
- FIFA Soccer 11
- Front Mission Evolved
- Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock
- Hydrophobia (XBLA)
- MorphX
- Quantum Theory

PS3
- Atelier Rorona: The Alchemist of Arland
- Battle vs. Chess
- Dead Rising 2
- Ferrari The Race Experience
- FIFA Soccer 11
- Front Mission Evolved
- Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock
- Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light (PSN)
- Quantum Theory

Wii
- FIFA Soccer 11
- Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock
- Samurai Warriors 3

DS
- FIFA Soccer 11

PSP
- FIFA Soccer 11

Coming Soon

- Fallout New Vegas -- PC, PS3, Xbox 360 : October 19
- Rock Band 3 -- Xbox 360, PS3 : October 26
- Fable 3 -- PC, Xbox 360 : October 26
- Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2 -- PC, 360, PS3, Wii : October 26
- DC Universe Online : November 2
- Epic Mickey : November 30
- Little Big Planet 2 : January 18

Comments

Agreed. In a year where we got a new Starcraft, Civilization, and Halo, the holiday releases are looking relatively weak.

Plus I started playing World of Warcraft again... must prioritize.

I'm very content with the end of the year lineup. Halo Reach has surpassed my mediocre expectations and will definitely be in regular rotation for some time.

Dead Rising 2 - I'm a sucker for the first game despite the flaws *cough* Otis *cough* escort missions. It's more of the same, but that's not a necessarily a bad thing. The prequel on XBLA was a nice little bite sized snack to get me hungry for the full game.

Fallout New Vegas hits shortly after that. Given the couple hundred hours I put into Fallout 3, I could make it my only game for the rest of the year and probably still be content. Hopefully I won't be disappointed - the new locale will be a nice change.

Fable 3 the following week. Madness. I'll most likely be still wrapped up in Fallout, but this should be a nice break from post-apocalyptia. I'm only mildly excited about it at this very moment, but I'm sure once I fire it up I'll be sucked in.

Call of Duty BO a couple weeks later. The Halo Reach shiny might be wearing slightly thin at this point (anticipating new map packs) so BO will be a fun multiplayer diversion. Here's hoping for a short campaign, and hopefully the multiplayer is a little less Rambo Stabby on Amphetamines this time around.

Assassin's Creed Brotherhood is just around the corner after that. I might wait this one out for the inevitable $29.99 Ubi-Drop a month or two later, but I was impressed enough with the last game to give this one a spin.

Little Big Planet 2 is next up - I expect it to be enjoyable and even more refined, but I'm really hoping the difficulty curve is a bit more forgiving. The last one was a bit of an exercise in frustration for beginners in the latter levels.

Oh yeah. Rock Band 3. I'm not sure I'm sold yet, but that could be my wallet talking. The keyboard sounds like a neat addition, but I'm getting a bit fatigued on the plastic instrument genre.

Who am I kidding though. Steam will jump out from nowhere in December and steal the rest of our hard earned cash. Time to pad that digital back log!

I consider myself fairly desensitized from a lifetime of gaming, but something about Dead Rising just doesn't work for me. It's those hordes of people - let's be real calling them zombies is just an excuse to slaughter regular people. They aren't really threatening, running away from them is a completely viable option - just the idea that slaughtering hundreds and hundreds of 'sick' people as entertainment ... it just doesn't work for me. I don't have this problem in any other game where the antagonists are clearly intent on killing the player character and will do so with clear-minded purpose unless you do it to them first. Somehow to me the situation presented in Dead Rising has a fundamental difference that makes it distasteful.

I feel so indifferent to the rest of the year. I'm, finally playing the last 2 MGSes, and catching up on some PC games I missed out now I can run (Mass Effect)

Sir, you are crazy! Binging and purging are not the way to consume games, only alcohol. Can't you see it's much healthier this way?

Having Starcraft 2 and Civ V sitting on my hard drive and more Reach to play on the 360 means I'm not getting anything for probably this month, much less this week. It can all wait until it's bargain bin fodder.

Thin_J wrote:

Having Starcraft 2 and Civ V sitting on my hard drive and more Reach to play on the 360 means I'm not getting anything for probably this month, much less this week. It can all wait until it's bargain bin fodder.

I'm with you there. Everything I really wanted this year is already come out. I'm interested in a few titles that are coming but not so much that I have to have right away.

I only just got around to trying out Red Dead Redemption (I went with Alan Wake the week it first came out). I've still got green stars to collect in Mario Galaxy 2. I skipped Starcraft 2 and Civ 5 altogether due to not having a good enough computer to run them, but I'm about to rectify that. And if all that weren't enough, I could probably play nothing but DQIX for the rest of the year and still be happy. I have NO shortage of games to play right about now.

And the holiday season is looking anything but weak to my eyes, between Fable 3, Fallout New Vegas, NBA Jam, Super Scribblenauts, Epic Mickey, Donkey Kong Country Returns, Kirby's Epic Yarn, and Rock Band 3. And that's just the stuff that I'm personally interested in.

I hated the first Dead Rising because of the clock. Having to start over just because I wanted to sit around and kill some zombies instead of going with "their plot" and then 1 death and it's all screwed up. Thank you very much, but this second one will have to be tremendously better for me to even consider it.

DR2 is already sitting on the harddrive waiting to get unlocked. I was going to give it a miss, because I just cannot get into the first one at all, but Case zero convinced me to give it a go.

Also, with the PC version you never know what "just cause 2" style unnoficial mods might pop up.

Get on that for me would you Internet? Ta.

I agree completely. There are a few things I'm interested in, but nothing is really jumping out at me.

Borderlands Claptrap Revolution is supposed to release this week.

I was searching for a new purchase a few nights ago but nothing really looked interesting.
that is until i was the Lara croft trailers. That game looked even more interesting than the Dead Rising 2 (that I may also get on Steam since it;s only $40). Lara Croft is only $15 so I didn't see any reason NOT to get it.
The familiar Diablo top-down view looks fantastic. the co-op looks fun and the rendering looks top-notch. I'm surprised it was only $15!

Irongut wrote:

Borderlands Claptrap Revolution is supposed to release this week.

Woo hoo! I forgot all about this. Unfortunately, I'm trying to log time in Halo in order to not suck so much. Maybe some Borderlands cross-training would be good.

AcidCat wrote:

Somehow to me the situation presented in Dead Rising has a fundamental difference that makes it distasteful.

Sure, and Dead Rising plays that up by making non-zombie psychopath humans the boss enemies. I think it's fair to say that they want you to squirm a little bit, before you go back to murdering zombies in entertaining ways.

Regarding DR2, I didn't love the first game, although I really wanted to. Case Zero, on the other hand, pushed all the right buttons for me. I'm now totally sold on DR2. I'm a bit torn between the PC and 360 versions, but since the PC release is $20 cheaper and has the potential for modding, I will probably swing that way.

Thin_J wrote:

Having Starcraft 2 and Civ V sitting on my hard drive and more Reach to play on the 360 means I'm not getting anything for probably this month, much less this week. It can all wait until it's bargain bin fodder.

Agree except for Fallout: New Vegas, which I am anticipating greatly. I've tried to be on media blackout for it, so that I can be surprised by who the voice actors are and the story overall.

Spoiler:

Google Reader ruined part of it for me already, that Felicia Day is a potential companion for you throughout the game

I do agree with Elysium, 2010 has to be one of the most well-paced years in gaming ever.

Looking over my list of upcoming games I want to purchase, we've got Vanquish, Kirby's Epic Yarn, DJ Hero 2, and Fable III in October and then Donkey Kong Country Returns, Sonic Colors, and Epic Mickey in November. Nothing's on the radar for December (yet), but January kicks right in with Lost in Shadow and Dead Space 2. There's lots of great gaming in the coming months.

Elysium wrote:

As we head into what feels in many ways like the first big game release week of the impending holiday season,

Cough....Civ 5 last week......cough.....cough

Swat wrote:

Fallout New Vegas hits shortly after that. Given the couple hundred hours I put into Fallout 3, I could make it my only game for the rest of the year and probably still be content. Hopefully I won't be disappointed - the new locale will be a nice change.

Fable 3 the following week. Madness. I'll most likely be still wrapped up in Fallout, but this should be a nice break from post-apocalyptia. I'm only mildly excited about it at this very moment, but I'm sure once I fire it up I'll be sucked in.

For some reason as much as I loved Fallout and Fable 2 I'm having a very hard time drumming up enthusiasm for their sequels.
New Vegas is logical enough as I've yet to be satisfied by an Obsidian-developed hand-off sequel (they are generally competent games they just never quite reach the heights of the original developer's version for me.) I'm definitely waiting to hear what the post-release buzz is on it.
Fable 3 is weirder for me however, as I truly adored Fable 2 and this is coming from the same crazy british man. I guess it is because all I've really heard about F3 is with respect to new game mechanics (which sound fine but not mindblowing), where what I really wanted to see built upon coming out of F2 was more coherence and development to the in-game narrative. I thought they did some really fantastic things in that department with F2 but could take it so much further.

Swat wrote:

Little Big Planet 2 is next up - I expect it to be enjoyable and even more refined, but I'm really hoping the difficulty curve is a bit more forgiving. The last one was a bit of an exercise in frustration for beginners in the latter levels.

Here here. My wife and I had a blast with the first one and have even picked it up again recently with the pending LBP2 excitement. Just given her excitement for the game this is one of my most anticipated games for certain. Epic Mickey comes in as a close second for similar reasons

FIFA, you say? That's the sort of game that I could accidentally get really invested in. Luckily, I'm already over-invested in Minecraft.

Also, I find this an interesting features list from the Battle VS Chess PC page at Amazon:

Product Features
Features -

High-Octane Speed - Nail'd aims to be the fastest off-road racer of them all - each track is engineered to keep you on the edge of your seat with anticipation of what's behind the next hairpin bend; what's more, utilize the amazing turbo boost ability for incentives rather than points, supercharging the game's sense of lightning-fast speed

Extreme Terrain - Nail'd, while set in real-life locations such as Yosemite Park, is designed to reflect the over-the-top arcade nature of the game; this is a world where impossible tracks and broken and bent laws of physics reign supreme

Over the Top Jumps - There's nothing like flying off a cliff edge and then falling half a mile towards the ground; throw-in dodging the blades of several towering wind turbines and struggling to nail the perfect landing with your opponents trying to knock you from your ride; if big air' in other games is earth-sized, Nail'd is like a twin galaxy of stomach-in-mouth terror

Intense Head to Head Action - Up to 11 AI opponents will keep you on your toes; they say death comes from above and that's very often the case in Nail'd; it's not all one way though, you can knock opponents from their vehicles and for extreme punishment you can deal a crushing blow from the sky by landing on top of your opponents

This fall's an interesting one. There's a whole bucketload of games that I'd buy at the drop of a hat were I flush with cash.

Being that my gaming budget will only stretch to maybe 2 games in addition to Rock Band 3, I'm having to seriously prioritise, and I'm finding it quite liberating. It feels pretty easy to take a pass on Fable 3 and Fallout: NV, as they're looking like more of the same of their prequels.

I suspect that I'll end up picking up more niche titles that fill gaps in my library. Front Mission Evolved, for instance, looks interesting purely because I don't have any mech games (although the fact that there's no reviews for it on Metacritic and it's released tomorrow looks suspect, although the MP looked robust when I played it at PAX).

EDIT - XBLA's lineup is looking pretty hot too - it might just be that I mainly forego new retail purchases and subsist on a mixed diet of my existing collection and shiny new downloadable yummies.

I remember reading that Fable 3's release date had slipped on PC, but Amazon's pre-order page still shows it on the same date as the 360 version. Has anybody heard anything else about this?

I'm not buying it at MSRP anyway (an honor which, of all the games on this list, I will reserve only for Fallout: New Vegas) but I'm curious what's happening there.

A reminder about Fallout New Vegas: this game is made by Obsidian, which is composed of many former Black Isle employees, so it doesn't get any more true to the original games than that. I'm optimistic that I'll like this game even more than I liked Fallout 3, which I consider to be my favorite game... well, ever I guess.

gore wrote:

A reminder about Fallout New Vegas: this game is made by Obsidian, which is composed of many former Black Isle employees, so it doesn't get any more true to the original games than that. I'm optimistic that I'll like this game even more than I liked Fallout 3, which I consider to be my favorite game... well, ever I guess.

True enough, however how true was Fallout 3 to the original games. It certainly was in humor and setting but not so much in gameplay - which is where the Obsidian guys tend to fall short for me. I'll remain cautiously optimistic and mildly uninterested until I actually start to here some final game impression.

I'm right in the middle of playing through Reach and playing my second campaign in Civ 5. However, I believe I have figured out my upcoming holiday purchase list using a UVerse gift card and rotating Amazon $20 credits.

Castlevania Lords of Shadow PS3
Kirby Epic Yarn Wii
Fallout: New Vegas 360
Fable 2 360
Donkey Kong Country Wii
Epic Mickey Wii

A couple of the Wii games will likely be held back as christmas gifts for the kids. Rock Band 3 and Guitar Hero:whatever are definite purchases but probably not until next June/July when they inevitably get price slashed. Call of Duty:Black Ops will make the list if I hear decent things about the campaign and if it is an Amazon Black Friday-Cyber Monday sale like CoD has been the past few years.

To be honest, I'm actually surprised to see 3 Wii games I'm interested in this holiday season.

Sean "Elysium" Sands wrote:

My game of the week this week is Dead Rising 2, but I honestly don't see myself dropping sixty bones just to smack around zombies with a kayak paddle for three hours.

Not that I think this might change your mind, but it is only $40 on the PC.

Elysium you didn't get it quite right. let me correct you...

Sean "Elysium" Sands wrote:

My game of the week this week is Dead Rising 2, but I honestly don't see myself dropping sixty bones just to smack around zombies with chainsaw mounted kayak paddles...

Don't forget that you can play online co-op this time and smack around those zombies with Certis for those 3 hours...

Irongut wrote:

Don't forget that you can play online co-op this time and smack around those zombies with Certis for those 3 hours...

Somehow I think you ruined your pitch with this ^

oMonarca wrote:
Irongut wrote:

Don't forget that you can play online co-op this time and smack around those zombies with Certis for those 3 hours...

Somehow I think you ruined your pitch with this ^

I cut out the line about cross-dressing and smacking each other around with paddles if they need a break from zombies...

Ah, but that would be so much better!

The pillow can't hold out much longer, captain!