March has at long last arrived, and that means the birds are atwitter as layers of insulating clothing are quickly being doffed. It also signals the beginning of baseball season and the return of masked guns-for-hire wreaking havoc across the globe. Well, that last bit is probably more of a year-round occurrence, but that doesn't change the fact that EA's Army of Two debuts on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 this week. Having retreated from the holiday 2007 fray, EA has spent the intervening months polishing the co-op-oriented third-person shooter, as noted in GameSpot's recent hands-on with the game.
With all 30 professional clubs now having reported for spring training, Take-Two and Sony are stepping up to the plate with their annual pro baseball sims. As the exclusive third-party licensor of Major League Baseball for games, Take-Two has a number of refinements for this year's MLB 2K8 on the Xbox 360, PS3, PlayStation 2, PlayStation Portable, and Wii, including entirely new pitching and batting mechanics. As console makers are exempt from Take-Two's deal, Sony will once again be fielding PS3, PS2, and PSP versions of MLB 08: The Show, which have been bulked up with a revised franchise mode and online features.
Gamers more interested in playing ball with mythological creatures' heads undoubtedly already know that Kratos returns this week with God of War: Chains of Olympus for the PSP. The third installment in the GOW series, Chains of Olympus is a prequel to the first two PS2 installments and follows an anguish-filled Kratos as he rampages through Ancient Greece in the wake of his family's demise. The game will also be receiving a special-edition bundle featuring a "deep red" PSP silk screened with Kratos' glowering mug in June.
THQ's Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War: Soulstorm and Rockstar Games' Bully: Scholarship Edition round off the week's high-profile release lineup. The final project of Iron Lore Entertainment, Soulstorm is the third expansion to Games Workshop's far-future real-time strategy series of PC games developed primarily by Relic Entertainment. Though the PS2 branch of Bullworth Academy has been in operation since October 2006, the expanded Xbox 360 and Wii campuses open this week with Bully: Scholarship Edition.
The Xbox 360, PS3, and Wii will each be receiving one new downloadable offering this week. Revealed last week, Capcom's overhead shooter Rocketmen: Axis of Evil will be hopping aboard Xbox Live and the PlayStation Network on Wednesday and Thursday, respectively, for $10 (aka 800 Microsoft points). Wii gamers will be able to check out the Bionic Commando-influenced action platformer Super Turrican for 800 Wii points ($8).
This week's new releases are listed below (list taken from retailer information--actual dates may vary).
MARCH 3, 2008
Arctic Stud Poker Run (PC)
Field Ops (PC)
Galactic Command - Echo Squad (PC)
Let's Ride: Friends Forever (DS)
Mysteryville 2 (PC)
Super Turrican (Wii VC)
The Lost Crown: A Ghost-hunting Adventure (PC)
Tom Clancy's Chronicles (PC)
MARCH 4, 2008
Anno 1701: Dawn of Discovery (DS)
Army of Two (X360, PS3)
Bully: Scholarship Edition (X360, Wii)
God of War: Chains of Olympus (PSP)
Chicken Hunter (DS)
Eco Creatures: Save the Forest (DS)
Imagine Figure Skater (DS)
Imperium Romanum (PC)
Major League Baseball 2K8 (X360, PS3, PS2, PSP, Wii)
MLB 08: The Show (PS3, PS2, PSP)
Mysterious Dungeon: Shiren the Wanderer (DS)
Ninja Reflex (Wii, DS)
Pet Shop (DS)
Petz Bunnyz (DS)
Silent Hill: Origins (PS2)
Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War: Soulstorm (PC)
MARCH 6, 2008
Rocketmen: Axis of Evil (PSN)
MARCH 7, 2008
Legends of Norrath: Inquisitor (PC)