November 12 - November 18

Brace yourself, the Wii U is coming.

It may not feel like it to some of us, but this is the biggest week of the gaming year. Not only is it the week that the next next-generation begins, it also marks the release of what will likely be the biggest money-making game of the year. Someday we will reach a place where a Call of Duty game isn't the high water mark for the year, but considering the obscene amounts previous entries have made, there's no reason to think we've come to that place yet.

But, let's talk about the Wii U for a moment. I, for one, remain unsold on the product, and don't find myself with much of a desire to rush out and grab a new system, which is probably pretty good considering at this point I'd likely be out of luck having not pre-ordered one. That said, I'm pretty impressed at the weighty list of titles available at launch, which spouts some pretty heavy hitters from an array of third-party publishers along with a New Super Mario game. Looking at that list, you can almost begin to believe that Nintendo genuinely wants to court the core gamer market again, and they'll have their chance being the only game in town for a substantial length considering no one else has even announced their next-gen system.

But, this week also has some hidden gems that might otherwise get lost in the noise of Call of Wii U week. For myself, I'm planning to pick up Rift's first major expansion, Storm Legion. Introducing 4 new "souls" (otherwise known as talent trees), two new continents, revamped classes, a level cap bump, new raids and the normal general stuff you'd expect from an MMO expansion. I still think Rift is one of the best MMOs on the market, on par in my eyes with the quality of Guild Wars 2, and it has quietly been pretty successful in its own right.

Also this week, Lego finally turns its Sauron's eye to the Lord of the Ring franchise, having trodden fully and for the most part delightfully all over Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Batman and Harry Potter. As long as they can stay away from Lego The Hunger Games, Lego Twilight and Lego 50 Shades of Grey, however, I still can't complain too much. Fact is, Traveller's Tales makes some pretty good games out of these franchises.

And, for our "also ran" of the week, Disney's Epic Mickey 2 hits the Wii and Wii U.

PC
- Call of Duty: Black Ops 2
- F1 Race Stars
- LEGO The Lord of the Rings
- Rift: Storm Legion

Xbox 360
- Ben 10: Omniverse
- Call of Duty: Black Ops 2
- Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two
- F1 Race Stars
- LEGO The Lord of the Rings
- Midway Arcade Origins
- The Hip Hop Dance Experience

PS3
- Ben 10: Omniverse
- Call of Duty: Black Ops 2
- Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two
- F1 Race Stars
- LEGO The Lord of the Rings
- Midway Arcade Origins
- Planets Under Attack (PSN)
- Singstar Digital (PSN)
- Wicked Monster Blast (PSN)
- Wonderbook: Book of Spells

Wii U
- Assassin's Creed III
- Batman: Arkham City Armored Edition
- Ben 10: Omniverse
- Call of Duty: Black Ops 2
- Darksiders 2
- Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two
- ESPN Sports Connection
- FIFA Soccer 13
- Game Party Champions
- Just Dance 4
- Madden NFL 13
- Mass Effect 3
- New Super Mario Bros. U
- Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor's Edge
- Nintendo Land
- Rabbids Land
- Scribblenauts Unlimited
- Sing Party
- Skylanders Giants
- Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed
- Tekken Tag Tournament 2
- Transformers Prime
- Warriors Orochi 3 Hyper
- Wipeout 3
- Your Shape: Fitness Evolved 2013
- ZombiU

Wii
- Ben 10: Omniverse
- Big Time Rush: Dance Party
- Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two
- LEGO The Lord of the Rings
- The Hip Hop Dance Experience
- Victorious: Taking the Lead

Vita
- Call of Duty: Black Ops: Declassified

Nintendo 3DS
- Ben 10: Omniverse
- Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion
- Monster Shooter (eShop)
- Rabbids Rumble
- Scribblenauts Unlimited

Nintendo DS
- Ben 10: Omniverse
- Jump Trials (DSiWare)
- Victorious: Taking the Lead
- Working Dawgs: A-Maze-ing Pipes (DSiWare)

Source: Shacknews for release list

Comments

What if the Wii U by Feb. is being outsold by the 360 in NA? Or is Japan alone enough for Nintendo?

Stele wrote:
jonnypolite wrote:

Cancelled my WiiU preorder. Just wasn't feeling it.

Should have kept and re-sold it. There will be a rush just because it's Black Friday week and it's the new thing.

It may or not be in stock from Dec 1st on. But you can almost be 100% sure that it will be sold out for a couple weeks in Nov. New shiny is new shiny.

Too much trouble. better to release it back into the wild.

No Wii U love nor Black Ops 2 love for me. I guess I'm waiting for Far Cry 3 and AC3 on PC.

Demiurge wrote:

Lego 50 Shades Of Grey sounds pretty awesome to me. Get on that, TT.

I think they already did that one.

IMAGE(http://www.brickwars-sets.com/brickwars-sets_pictures/more_views/LEGO_10030_PIC.jpg)

A blissful week of nothing for me unless I cave and accept a free copy of Black Ops 2. Which so far I've said no to. Willpower only has to hold through tomorrow. After that I'm good.

I've played around with the controller at the Target demo stations. It simply is not comfortable to hold. It's so big, it feels like I'm holding a lunch tray instead of a controller. The head bob required for looking between the gamepad screen and the main display was also annoying to me. It's not like the DS where you can take in both screens at once, or simply flick your eyes from one screen to another.

I thought it was comfortable, but I routinely game on an iPad encased in a bulky wood case so maybe my opinion doesn't count.

Shop may not be jumping around in anticipation, but I'm pretty excited! Maybe I'm just in the mood for a shiny new gadget.

Demyx wrote:

I thought it was comfortable, but I routinely game on an iPad encased in a bulky wood case so maybe my opinion doesn't count.

Shop may not be jumping around in anticipation, but I'm pretty excited! Maybe I'm just in the mood for a shiny new gadget.

A wood case, you say? Is it custom made? Pics! I demand pics and pics of the making of!

Also, I found it quite comfortable, but where my ring fingers landed while touching all 4 shoulder buttons was slightly awkward. They hit on the ends of the bumps so only one side of the fingers touched it. The demo station seems like a terrible place to make a judgement on the looking up and back since the cord is tightly wound you can't stand comfortably far enough away from the screen to get a proper feel for it. At least that's what I thought.

When I played with the controller at Gamestop I found it to be very comfortable. Surprisingly comfortable.

What I didn't find comfortable was having two screens and often not knowing where I should look. What I don't know, and what I will be looking for in the way of impressions, is does that frustration give way after some time.

Also, it looks like they have a very Xbox 360-like Pro controller. Will I be able to enjoy the WiiU with just that. I would have enjoyed the two Zelda games so much more had they just been normal controller based games.

IMAGE(https://www.dandh.com/images/prod300/WUPARSKA.jpg)

If games play just fine with this, then I might be able to take or leave the pad. But if all the games that don't need the pad are just ports of what I play on the 360, there won't be much of a point. Then i will have to judge the system purely on how much I feel like having two screens is a benefit versus annoyance.

I may get an insight once I start using Smartglass with the 360. It sure does feel like Microsoft is not going to let Nintendo get so far ahead in unique control schemes for the next gen.

I think the games that show the game on the TV and the gamepad simultaneously (like the Rayman Legends playable demo) do the player a disservice. I'm willing to bet that 90% of the time there won't be any confusion about which screen to look at. Main action? Look at the TV. Inventory or map? Look at the gamepad.

It will be interesting if some developers lean on Smartglass and the WiiU to be able to develop for two systems. I really don'ty know how similar the two systems really will be, especially how Smartglass will be implemented for the 720.

The problem I had with Rayman was that you really didn't need to look at the TV, but if you did, there were many instances where you needed to drop down to the screen to perform certain actions, but there was nothing different about what was being shown on the TV.

I am anxious to see how it all fits together for the WiiU, though.

Seeing Tekken Tag Tournament 2 really warms the heart. Hopefully we can get more cross-platform fighting games on the Wii U. And then we can see some Wii-exclusive titles make it over to the rest of the world, right? Right Capcom? CAPCOM? TATSUNOKO!? :'( *ahem*. So yes. More Wii support for fighting games. Grand.

mrtomaytohead wrote:

A wood case, you say? Is it custom made? Pics! I demand pics and pics of the making of!

It's not custom, it's this: http://shop.portenzo.com/bonded-leat...

Thus far the one game where I've heard the two screens complaint most has been ZombiU, which I'd have to test for myself. To me it seems reasonable to just lift the controller towards the television and do what you gotta do, and in that game it's supposed to be that rare moment of "oh sh*t oh sh*t oh sh*t". What was it Rabbit said in last week's podcast? That moment where the guy is at the car trying to get his keys out and the killer is right behind him? That's what they're going for, in which case even if you keep the controller in your lap it is effective.

I do like the concept of the controller and all, but at this point I think I may experiment with buying a tablet. I also bought a PS Vita and 3DS on day one so my urge for new for the sake of new is quite used up. If I've beaten Bayonetta by the time Bayonetta 2 shows up and we've seen the other next gen offerings, maybe we'll see (I'm really late to this console generation btw).

Also I want to buy a couple of Raspberry Pi's, more memory for my computer, maybe a whole new gfx card so I can play DirectX 11 games and I still have Wii games on the back log (and GBA games actually).

ccesarano wrote:

Thus far the one game where I've heard the two screens complaint most has been ZombiU, which I'd have to test for myself. To me it seems reasonable to just lift the controller towards the television and do what you gotta do, and in that game it's supposed to be that rare moment of "oh sh*t oh sh*t oh sh*t". What was it Rabbit said in last week's podcast? That moment where the guy is at the car trying to get his keys out and the killer is right behind him? That's what they're going for, in which case even if you keep the controller in your lap it is effective.

That's one of many ways that I think the interface could be really awesome. I haven't seen a lot to make me think that the potential will be well exploited, though.

Demiurge wrote:

Lego 50 Shades Of Grey sounds pretty awesome to me. Get on that, TT.

Finally! Motion-controls for finger --> butt

Seriously though, I have no need for a Wii U, but if the wife's interested, I'm game for having one in the house.

The Wii has been the kids' system for a while, but even they play more often on the 360. That's probably because I haven't brought a new game for the Wii since, um, ah, when did the Wii fit come out? Anyway, we don't even have the new motion controllers.

Anyway, I'm on a wait and see with the WiiU. However, if Minecraft came on the system, my kids would be all over that.