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Release This!: The One With The Spoony Bard

This week sees one final breath of life in the United States for 2005, with only a couple more games slated for release before the new year; most notably, of course, the ...

Frank Cifaldi, Contributor

December 13, 2005

5 Min Read

This week sees one final breath of life in the United States for 2005, with only a couple more games slated for release before the new year; most notably, of course, the delayed Dead or Alive 4 for Xbox 360. In Europe, only the PSP has anything to say this week, but it's saying a lot with a grand total of five releases. And Japan...continues being Japan, with a number of franchise sequels and manga tie-ins, and one very surprising 2D puzzler for the PSP. This release list, compiled exclusively for Gamasutra, covers every video game product we know to be available at the retail level for the week of December 12, 2005. Games Released in the United States: Game Boy Advance: Dragon Ball Z: The Legacy of Goku I & II, Final Fantasy IV, Pocket Dogs Gamecube: Chaos Field Nintendo DS: Monopoly/Boggle/Yahtzee/Battleship Compilation PlayStation 2: Friends: The One With All The Trivia, Gauntlet: Seven Sorrows PlayStation Portable: Armored Core: Formula Front, Midway Arcade Treasures: Extended Play, Ultimate Block Party, World Championship Poker 2: Featuring Howard Lederer, WWE Smackdown! vs. RAW 2006 Xbox: Gauntlet: Seven Sorrows, SnoCross 2: Featuring Blair Morgan PC: 80 Days Highlights: Final Fantasy IV Advance (Game Boy Advance) Developer: Square-Enix Publisher: Nintendo Final Fantasy IV Advance is the first output from Square-Enix's "Final Fantasy Series Port Project," which will also see GBA releases of both V and VI, as well as a 3D-modified III for the Nintendo DS. What this of course means is that, combined with last year's Final Fantasy I & II: Dawn of Souls, series fanatics will one day be able to carry around the entire first half of the series in their book bag. New additions to this particular port include a spruced-up script and the addition of character face shots to the game's dialogue boxes. Friends: The One With All the Trivia Developer: Artech Studios Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive A rather bizarre usage of the PS2 console, Friends: The One With All The Trivia is a fairly simple, direct, and self-descriptive trivia game for fans of the long-running sitcom. The "game" features, we're told, over 3,000 trivia questions and 700 video clips, with a difficulty level catered only for the hardest of the hardcore fans. The presentation is as simple as can be, with the only variety being the occasional sound clip or video footage accompanying a certain percentage of the questions. With its $20 release price, however, this might make a decent gift for the Friends fanatic in your life. And odds are, you have one. Gauntlet: Seven Sorrows Developer: Midway Publisher: Midway Gauntlet hasn't changed much since its arcade inception over twenty years ago, and with the amount of sequels and follow-ups we've seen, apparently it doesn't need to. Seven Sorrows retains the classic formula: hack your way through dozens of enemies and destroy their spawn point, find the key, warp to the next level, and repeat indefinitely, though - like the other recent additions to the series - Seven Sorrows features an RPG-like leveling system to build up more devestating combo maneuvers in your troll-bashing. Games Released in Europe: PlayStation Portable: Madden NFL 06, Peter Jackson's King Kong: The Official Game of the Movie, Prince of Persia Revelations, The Sims 2, WWE Smackdown! vs. RAW 2006 Highlights: Prince of Persia Revelations (PSP) Developer: Ubisoft Montreal Publisher: Ubisoft Despite having been released in the United States last week, there hasn't been much publicity yet for Revelations. Essentially, this is an expanded version of Prince of Persia: Warrior Within, the console game released last year. The Prince himself hasn't been given any new abilities or gimmicks; rather, the expansion comes in the form of new levels and challenges. It almost appears as if the original team went back and polished up the game to their liking, with an extra year of development time, which should make it interesting for fans of the original. Games Released in Japan: Game Boy Advance: Chicken Little, Final Fantasy IV Advance Gamecube: Chicken Little, Jikkyou Powerful Pro Yakyuu 12 Ketteiban, Konjiki no Gashbell: Go! Go! Mamono Fight!!, Shadow the Hedgehog Nintendo DS: Croket! DS: Tenkuu no Yuusha tachi PlayStation 2: Chaos Field New Order, Chicken Little, D.C.F.S. Da Capo Fall Seasons, Gallop Racer 8: Live Horse Racing, Jikkyou Powerful Pro Yakyuu 12 Ketteiban, Jissen Pachi-Slot Hisshouhou! Aladdin 2 Evolution, Karutagura: Tamashii no Kunou, Konjiki no Gashbell: Go! Go! Mamono Fight!!, Peter Jackson's King Kong, Sanyo Pachinko Paradise 12, Shadow the Hedgehog, Simple 2000 Series Vol. 91: The All Star Kakutou, Tales of the Abyss PlayStation Portable: Exit, Hayarikami Portable, Jet do Go! Pocket, Karakuri, NBA Live 06, Pipo Saru Academia 2, Rockman X: Irregular Hunters Xbox: Shadow the Hedgehog PC Blaze of Destiny III, Chichi wa Shock!!, Festa!! Hyper Girls Pop, Futari de Hitotsuno Koikokoro, I-Ki-Na-Ri Iinazuke!, Kiruto, Kiss X 400: Futokoro Kashiki Hibi no Renzoku, Mome! Kyoudai Katei Kyoushi 11-Jin, Ohimesama wa Tokkunchuu 2, Renai Yamai, Seiin no Meikyuu, Singles 2: Triple Trouble, Vampanera, Yatohime Zankikou, Yume Milk Three Highlights: Exit (PlayStation Portable) Developer: Taito Publisher: Taito Produced by Taito veteran Seiji Kawakami, simultaneously with the upcoming World Air Force for the Xbox 360, Exit is a refreshingly 2D action/puzzle jaunt for the PSP, featuring stylized characters who appear on-screen as silhouettes. As "professional rescuer" Mr. Esc, players make their way through 100 stages, rescuing people from hospitals, burning buildings and the like, and solving a series of puzzles using inventory items and industry-standard crates. Additionally, Taito has announced that new levels will be available for download via the PSP's browser, which should add some longetivity to the game. Rockman X: Irregular Hunters (PlayStation Portable) Developer: Capcom Publisher: Capcom Irregular Hunters is a dramatically polished remake of Mega Man X, the blue bomber's 1993 16-bit debut. The characters and backgrounds have been re-rendered in full 3D, adding a modern brush stroke to the now-classic gameplay. The music has been re-scored as well, a sample of which can be heard on the game's official website. Additional new features include cutscenes that precede every boss battle, and an unlockable movie chronicling the history of the Mega Man X franchise.

About the Author(s)

Frank Cifaldi


Frank Cifaldi is a freelance writer and contributing news editor at Gamasutra. His past credentials include being senior editor at 1UP.com, editorial director and community manager for Turner Broadcasting's GameTap games-on-demand service, and a contributing author to publications that include Edge, Wired, Nintendo Official Magazine UK and GamesIndustry.biz, among others. He can be reached at [email protected].

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