Think of the Children for October 22


posted 10/22/2008 by Dan Keener
other articles by Dan Keener
Platforms: Multiple
Based on the amount of titles we saw this week, it appears that the worst of the Holiday Rush may be behind us. A grand total of 26 titles were rated in the last, suggesting we will be hitting a slow period leading up to Christmas. The biggest difference are with the Wii, DS and PC platforms, which are each down by 40-50% of the normal amount of rated titles. Yes, the mindless stuff is still there (and a couple of goodies), but in a lot less quantity than has been seen in previous weeks. Sony and Microsoft are probably a bit blue this week as a solid month of both quantity and quality rated titles from each was overshadowed by a mixed bag. My intriguing title of the week is a “sport” that is making its next-gen console debut, and begs the question why?

With such a small pool of titles from Nintendo and PC, history tells us that the majority of it is just out to make a buck. And history would be mostly correct, although there were a handful of titles on the list that could be pretty good including Metal Slug 2 (Wii), Big League Sports (Wii) and EverQuest II: The Shadow Odyssey (PC). Otherwise, I see more titles that include the words Petz, Super Mario RPG (?) and those that contain “Brain” or “Coach” in it. Toss in those that invoke the name of the lead character such as Hardy Boys, Cate West or Henry Hatsworth, and you can see where we are headed…

What a difference a couple weeks makes, as Sony went from hero to Zero in a matter of 14 days. After getting the meat of their fall and Holiday lineup rated, they were left with a couple of third-party games that were also rated for the Xbox 360. Need for Speed Undercover and NPPL Championship Paintball 2009 were the only Sony offerings. For the 360, it fared a touch better, as it also saw Le Tour de France 2008, Onechanbara: Bikini Samurai Squad, R-Type Dimensions and Secret Service on the list. Not exactly a big week for the boys from Bellevue either, but scoring the R-Type franchise to XBLA was a nice little coup.

The Intriguing Title of the Week is “NPPL Championship Paintball 2009” by Activision-Blizzard for both the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 which was apparently announced just days ago. Reading the announcement info, you almost get pumped up to play with authentic gear, multiple game modes, tournaments and skill-based progression system….until the reality hits that it is a game about paintball. Hopefully we will get a chance to take a look at the game and it will change my mind, but based on the announced details, it seems like I can get the same type of exhilarating action in the sequels to Resistance or Gears of War where you get to use real virtual guns that spit out real virtual bullets and not…paint.

Title Publisher Rating Platforms
Cate West: The Vanishing Files DS Destineer Everyone 10+ DS
Delicious - Emily's Tea Garden RealNetworks Everyone Mac, PC
Globey - On The Roll! RealNetworks Everyone Mac, PC
Metal Slug 2 SNK Corporation of America Teen Wii
Need For Speed™ Undercover Electronic Arts Teen PC, 360, PS3
Secret Service Activision-Blizzard Teen PC, PS2, 360
Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars Nintendo Everyone Wii
The Guild 2: Venice DreamCatcher Teen PC
Winter Sports 2: The Next Challenge Conspiracy Everyone DS
SingStar Country CSCEA Teen PS2
NPPL Championship Paintball 2009 Activision-Blizzard Everyone 10+ 360, PS3
Petz Catz Clan Ubisoft Everyone DS
Petz Monkeyz House Ubisoft Everyone DS
Le Tour de France 2008 Focus Home Interactive Everyone 360
Left Brain Right Brain 2 Majesco Entertainment Everyone DS
FIFA Manager 09 Electronic Arts Everyone PC
Hardy Boys: Treasure on the Tracks SEGA Everyone DS
Henry Hatsworth™ in the Puzzling Adventure Electronic Arts Everyone DS
EverQuest II: The Shadow Odyssey Sony Online Entertainment Teen PC
Big League Sports Activision-Blizzard Everyone Wii
Burger Island Destineer Everyone DS
A Boy and His Blob: Trouble on Blobolonia Majesco Entertainment Everyone Wii
Hockey Allstar Shootout Big Blue Bubble Inc. Everyone Wii
My Fitness Coach Ubisoft Everyone Wii
Onechanbara: Bikini Samurai Squad D3Publisher of America Mature 360
R-Type Dimensions Tozai, Inc. Everyone 360

Here is the final tally on who, what and where everything was rated for last week. There were 26 rated titles on seven platforms. DS (8), PC (7), 360 (6) and Wii (6) had the most games rated. There were 19 of the 27 titles rated at E10+ or lower, six rated at T for Teen and one (Onechanbara: Bikini Samurai Squad) rated at M for Mature.

Got a comment on the article or a rated games, put it in the section below or send me an e-mail. Until next week, make sure you know what your kids are playing……

*The weekly Intriguing Title of the Week (and any game that is tossed in that paragraph) is identified based on a game on the list that catches the eye of the author for any number of reasons. Good, bad or otherwise, feel free to agree, disagree or add some constructive input to the discussion.

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