November 26 - November 30

[Thanks to OzymandiasAV for putting our Week Ahead together this week]

Blame it on tryptophan, blame it on the Mayans, blame it on the long-foretold crash of the gaming economy as we know it: it's a slow and alarmingly nostalgic Week Ahead for video games.

Leading off the major releases this week is Ratchet & Clank: Full Frontal Assault, a momentary diversion in which the series' calling cards for wacky weaponry and adolescent cartoon humor are lovingly slathered like mustard upon Orcs Must Die's greasy jumbo hot dog. Offshoot games haven't been kind to the Ratchet & Clank franchise — Secret Agent Clank and the multiplayer-focused All 4 One were received by the public with an enthusiasm normally reserved for street mimes or morning talk radio — but avatar-based tower defense seems like a decent fit for R&C's third-person gunplay.

Next in line is the re-release of Under Defeat HD, a vertical SHMUP from that uses a rotational aiming mechanic to deliver the true-to-life experience of Flying a Real Helicopter. The original G.rev joint was one of the last official releases for the Sega Dreamcast, but there's no word whether the iconic plastic cone trees have been retained in this version of the game.

The re-releases continue throughout the rest of the undercard for this week. Beamdog's enhanced remake of Baldur's Gate arrives with surprisingly minimal fanfare, while the opening salvo of Sega's Model2 remake collection hits the HD console downloadable channels. And, if you'd like to make your eyes bleed joy into the back of your skull, there's always the PC port of Terry Cavanagh's prismatic iOS score chase, Super Hexagon.

PC
-- Baldur's Gate Enhanced Edition (download - $20)
-- Miner Wars 2081 (download)
-- Stealth Bastard Deluxe (download - $10)
-- Super Hexagon (download - $3)

Xbox 360
-- Fighting Vipers (XBLA - $5)
-- Sonic the Fighters (XBLA - $5)
-- Virtua Fighter 2 (XBLA - $5)

PlayStation 3
-- Ratchet & Clank: Full Frontal Assault
-- Under Defeat HD: Deluxe Edition
-- Fighting Vipers (PSN - $5)
-- Sonic the Fighters (PSN - $5)
-- Virtua Fighter 2 (PSN - $5)

Nintendo 3DS
-- Aero Porter (eShop - $5)

Nintendo DS
-- Bloons TD 4 (DSiWare - $5)
-- Invasion of the Alien Blobs! (DSiWare - $2)

Comments

What a strange set of releases.

Is that the iPad Baldur's Gate we've all been waiting for?

...why aren't major iOS releases included?

Well, one big reason is that iOS releases are ultimately at the whims of Apple's approval process, which does not slot games into tidy, repeatable release windows like you see on the more "traditional" retail channels. Plus, the approval process itself doesn't always yield comparable turnaround times. Both of these issues lead to a real dearth of concrete information related to iOS game releases.

In regards to Baldur's Gate iOS specifically, the latest news is that it is currently targeted for November 30th (Friday), but that date is on the heels of a two month delay to begin with, before we factor in the points above.

Keep your fingers crossed and, with any luck, you'll be ordering your miniature giant space hamster to go for the eyes by the weekend.

Xbox 360
-- Fighting Vipers (XBLA - $5)
-- Sonic the Fighters (XBLA - $5)
-- Virtua Fighter 2 (XBLA - $5)

I would love to see this game made. You're a fighter who fights fighters.

Model2? I'm confused.

Aero Porter looked quirky enough that I might pick it up eventually, pending reviews. That's Yoot Saito designing, right?

Good thing there was a Steam sale this weekend and I have a lot of "new to me" games that I can play instead.

Already bought and pre-loaded Baldurs Gate. Granted I actually already have the GOG version (modified to be BG1+2 together) installed on a different hard-drive, but hell, if it helps drum up interest for a proper isometric BG3 game somewhere down the road it's worth it.

Also, love the new interface stuff - especially what they've done with the journal.

I think Farcry 3 is actually due for release here on Friday as well. Wasn't looking forward to that AT ALL but the recent RPS preview got me a bit stoked for it.

I eagerly await impressions of the Far Cry 3 PC port. Hopefully it's solid as I'm really interested in the game now.

Hmmm. Wonder if it's time to add Balders Gate to the pile. Though the GOG combo pack sounds interesting. Must also see what remnants remain from the Steam sale (I was away over the weekend).

Moggy wrote:

Hmmm. Wonder if it's time to add Balders Gate to the pile. Though the GOG combo pack sounds interesting. Must also see what remnants remain from the Steam sale (I was away over the weekend).

To clarify, I had the separate BG1 and BG2 packs from GoG (including relevant expansions) and then merged them with mods so that they all form one massive game using the BG2 interface & rules sets.

Takes a little bit of work to set up but worth it. Combine that with the high-res widescreen mod and it looks pretty nice.

You dont technically need the GoG version either, it's just the most convenient way to grab it these days I think.

Just saw this game mentioned at RPS, which isn't on the release list.

Frozen Hearth

Apparently it just released either yesterday or today as download-only. For anyone interested, it looks like GamersGate has the best price ($19.95). It's currently not on Steam.

Man, the temptation to buy Fighting Vipers and Virtua Fighter 2 and pretend I'm 15 all over again is mighty strong. But then I remember I bought the Mortal Kombat Arkade Kollektion, and it turns out you can put a price on nostalgia (and it's less than five dollars).

shoptroll wrote:

Model2? I'm confused.

The Model2 arcade board served as the hardware for a lot of Sega's big name arcade hits in the mid-90s. So, as a part of what appears to be an ongoing re-release binge, Sega released a trailer, with little fanfare, for a Model2 collection for the HD downloadable platforms a while back. Virtua Fighter 2, Fighting Vipers, and Sonic The Fighters are the first wave of that collection, with Virtua Striker and Virtual On apparently coming later down the line.

shoptroll wrote:

Aero Porter looked quirky enough that I might pick it up eventually, pending reviews. That's Yoot Saito designing, right?

That's correct.

Huh, a game of the week that I agree with. That's rare.

OzymandiasAV wrote:

and Virtual On apparently coming later down the line.

Yaaaaay!

Also pretty psyched for Miner Wars 2081. Those corridor sections remind me of Descent! Also, space!