Following a torrent of releases leading up to Black Friday last week, the game industry is finally gearing down to ride out the rest of the year. The creek has not yet run completely dry, however.
This week, the highest-profile release is Ubisoft's Prince of Persia. A franchise reboot following the Sands of Time trilogy, the Prince's first outing on Microsoft and Sony's current-gen hardware features an all-new cel-shaded art style. Once again, the titular nobleman will be scaling rooftops in a fantastical setting, and this time he will team up with a new heroine, Elika. A side-scrolling Nintendo DS edition of the game also joins the console and PC versions this week. For an early look at what to expect from Prince of Persia, check back later today for GameSpot's live gameplay marathon.
Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto franchise makes its triumphant return to the PC space this week, more than seven months after the retail heavyweight impacted the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Rockstar's Toronto studio has made a number of tweaks to the port of the top-rated game, sprucing up graphics, adding a movie editor, and upping the multiplayer player count to 32.
Other than that, this week has a few other notable releases on the agenda. Though the PS3 edition has been indefinitely shelved, THQ and Sandblast will launch Destroy All Humans! Path of the Furon for the Xbox 360. Red Fly Studios' Mushroom Men--one of the flagship games under now-Southpeak-owned Gamecock Media Group--arrives for the Wii and DS, while Kingdom Hearts Re: Chain of Memories spins its tale on the PlayStation 2. Sony's current and last-gen console will also see the release of SingStar Abba, featuring the '70s Swedish supergroup behind such hits as "Dancing Queen."
Rare's Banjo-Kazooie, which had previously been announced for last week, represents Microsoft's weekly Wednesday addition to Xbox Live. A redux of the Nintendo 64 original, the game ties in to Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts (released to much acclaim in November) and also sports a graphical update. It will be available for 1,200 Microsoft points ($15).
Nintendo's WiiWare has two new games this week. Space Invaders Get Even, released compliments of Square Enix-owned Taito, reprises the classic arcade shoot-'em-up with four new levels for 500 Wii points ($5). According to the publisher, three additional levels will also be released at 500 Wii points apiece. Hudson's Pit Crew Panic, a fast-paced racing-inspired action game, also zips to Nintendo's downloadable game service, for 800 Wii points ($8).
This week's new releases are listed below (list taken from retailer information--actual dates may vary).
DECEMBER 1, 2008
Destroy All Humans! Path of the Furon (X360)
Emma at the Farm (DS)
Metal Slug 2 (Wii VC)
Neopets Puzzle Adventure (PC)
Pit Crew Panic (WiiWare)
Space Invaders Get Even (WiiWare)
DECEMBER 2, 2008
Animal Boxing (DS)
Cate West: The Vanishing Files (Wii)
Dreamer: Puppy Trainer (DS)
Family Party: 30 Great Games (Wii)
Grand Theft Auto IV (PC)
Happy Cooking (DS)
Kingdom Hearts Re: Chain of Memories (PS2)
Mushroom Men: Rise of the Fungi (DS)
Mushroom Men: The Spore Wars (Wii)
My Fitness Coach (Wii)
My Fun Facts Coach (DS)
Nancy Drew: The White Wolf of Icicle Creek (Wii)
Prince of Persia (X360, PS3, DS)
Safecracker: The Ultimate Puzzle Adventure (Wii)
SingStar Abba (PS3, PS2)
Ski & Shoot (Wii)
Slingo Quest (DS)
The King of Fighters Collection: The Orochi Saga (Wii)
The Tale of Despereaux (Wii, PS2, DS, PC)
DECEMBER 4, 2008
Sony had not revealed its Thursday release slate as of press time.