With just a month to go, most gamers' attention is focused on the looming launch of the PlayStation 3 and Wii. However, there's plenty still going on with systems already on the market, as evidenced by this week's packed release calendar.
The original gaming platform, the PC, got a highly anticipated title today in the form of Battlefield 2142. Set in a bleak future where a massive ice age has made most of Earth uninhabitable, the game takes the popular combat of the Battlefield series and moves it to a sci-fi setting, a first for developer Digital Illusions CE. The game is rated T for Teen, costs $49.99, and is getting a warm reception from critics.
PCs will also see a blast from the past return. Beloved cartoon duo Sam & Max are back in Sam & Max Episode 1: Culture Shock, their first game since the 1993 classic Sam & Max: Freelance Police. As the title suggests, the game is the first in a series of "episodic adventures" starring the dog detective and his "rabbity-thing" sidekick. The game is currently only available to subscribers of GameTap, and will be available on November 1 via the official Sam & Max Web site.
Over down console way, two highly anticipated titles hit the Xbox 360. First up is Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell Double Agent, the latest entry in Ubisoft's long-running stealth series. (The game will be released for PlayStation 2, PC, Xbox, and GameCube the following week, with PS3 and Wii editions to follow.) Golf fans can also tee off on Microsoft's next-gen console courtesy of Tiger Woods PGA Tour 07, which will also let players buy cheats on Xbox Live Marketplace.
Other notable releases this week are: Family Guy (PS2, Xbox, PSP), 2K's adaptation of the popular TV cartoon; Bully, Rockstar Games' controversial prep-school adventure; Justice League Heroes (PS2, Xbox, DS), Warner Bros. Interactive's DC Comics-based action-RPG; THQ's Destroy All Humans! 2 (PS2, Xbox); Microsoft's Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs (PC), Zoo Tycoon 2: Marine Mania (PC), and Microsoft Flight Simulator X (PC); Sid Meier's Railroads! (PC), also from 2K Games; D3's minigame compilation WTF aka Work Time Fun (PSP); and, last but not least, The Sims 2: Pets (PC, PS2, GC).
A list of all notable new releases is below (list taken from retailer information--actual dates may vary); a complete list of games shipping this week can be found on GameSpot's New Releases page.
October 17, 2006
Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs (PC)
Battlefield 2142 (PC)
Cabela's African Safari (PS2 PC, PSP, Xbox 360)
Destroy All Humans! 2 (PS2, Xbox)
Garfield: Tale of Two Kitties (PC, PS2, DS)
The Legend of Spyro: A New Beginning (DS)
Microsoft Flight Simulator X (PC)
Sid Meier's Railroads! (PC)
The Sims 2: Pets
Tokobot Plus: Mysteries of the Karakuri (PS2)
Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell Double Agent (Xbox 360)
Tiger Woods PGA Tour 07 (Xbox 360)
UFO: Extraterrestrials (PC)
Zoo Tycoon 2: Marine Mania (PC)
October 19, 2006
Lineage II: The Chaotic Chronicle - The Epic Collection (PC)