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Newsbriefs: Live Arcade Taps Root Beer, Wii Gets Mario World, N.A. Gets The Witcher

[UPDATED: 8:12pm PST] Today's regularly updated newsbriefs include Root Beer Tapper coming this week to Live Arcade, Super Mario World landing on the Wii Shop Channel, and Kingdom Hearts reaching a cumulative 10 million units i
[UPDATED: 8:12pm PST] Today's regularly updated newsbriefs include Root Beer Tapper coming this week to Live Arcade, Super Mario World landing on the Wii Shop Channel, and Kingdom Hearts reaching a cumulative 10 million units in sales. - Microsoft has announced the next game to be released as part of its regular Wednesday Xbox Live Arcade update. On February 7th, Microsoft will release Midway's original fast-paced reaction game Root Beer Tapper, as ported to the system by Digital Eclipse. As with many of Xbox Live's arcade conversions, Root Beer Tapper will feature updated graphics for hi-def displays, versus and co-op multiplayer modes, Leaderboards tallying top scores for all of its various modes, and 12 achievements totaling 200 Gamerpoints. Root Beer Tapper will be available for 400 Microsoft Points ($5). - Nintendo of America has announced three more additions coming today to its U.S. Wii Shop Channel. Following the prior two weeks of major franchise releases like Link to the Past and Mario Kart 64, the company has added the Super NES launch-hit Super Mario World, available for 800 Wii Points ($8). Also appearing on the Wii Shop Channel will be Turbo-Grafx 16 side scrolling beat-em-up Vigilante, and the Sega Genesis top-down sci-fi action game Gain Ground. The two titles will be available for 600 and 800 Wii points, respectively. - Square Enix and Buena Vista Games have jointly announced that their Disney/Square cross-over franchise Kingdom Hearts has sold more than 10 million units combined over the franchise's life, with the 2002 original Kingdom Hearts ranking as one of the top-10 best selling PlayStation 2 titles of all time. According to figures released by the developers, North America has been the most receptive audience for the trio of games released thus far, with over three million sold of the original, 0.9 million sold of the Game Boy Advance Chains of Memories, and over 1.7 million sold of the 2006 update, Kingdom Hearts II. Said series producer Shinji Hashimoto, "When we first started developing Kingdom Hearts, we never imagined we would pass the 10 million mark so quickly. We are delighted and extremely grateful for the support from our fans around the globe. We hope to continue to provide games which fulfill your anticipation in the future." - Publisher Atari and developer CD Projekt have announced that the two companies have reached a new agreement for Atari to bring the developer's forthcoming fantasy RPG The Witcher to North America. Based on novels by Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski, The Witcher, due as a Games For Windows release in fall of 2007, casts players as monster slayer and swordfighter Geralt, and blends traditional fantasy role-playing elements with fast-paced combat and 'an expansive, twisting plotline.' Said Atari project manager Jeremiah Cohn, "The Witcher is a tremendous game that has been on everyone's radar since CD Projekt began development. With this publishing deal, Atari continues its quest to bring highly impressive titles to North America and we have our sights set on making The Witcher one of the most anticipated RPGs of the year." - The latest updates on Gamasutra sister alt.gaming weblog GameSetWatch include a look at the newly resurrected Myst Online: Uru Live, a cryptic message issued by the Official Xbox Magazine, and a recent interview with flOw composer, Austin Wintory. - The latest updates from Gamasutra sister website Game Career Guide include a new feature covering a frequent inquiry about game design schools. - Also updated today: the latest Gamasutra job postings, including openings from Amaze Entertainment, Day 1 Studios, Edge of Reality, Fisher-Price, iWin, Left Behind Games, Paradigm Entertainment, Perpetual Entertainment, Stormfront Studios, THQ, Vicious Cycle Software, Vivendi Games Mobile, and VR Studios.

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