Games | Weekly Game Releases | Blog | Week of March 4, 2008: This week, your roguish (or rather, roguelike) grin becomes tears of sorrow as you have your hinder handed to you by a 15-year-old game.

List compiled by reibeatall and Sarcasmorator | Imports by parish, courtesy of NCS | Posted March 3, 2008

Game of the week

Mysterious Dungeon: Shiren the Wanderer
Sega | DS | Roguelike Dungeon Crawler
It's not often that the U.S. gets a console roguelike. Usually, they're found either on PC or else they're spinoffs of popular series like Torneko's Mysterious Dungeon or Pokémon Mystery Dungeon. I suppose that the fact Izuna seemed to do fairly well when it was released pushed Sega into localizing Shiren.

Warning: This game will kick your ass. But it's totally worth it.

Also appearing in stores

God of War: Chains of Olympus
Ready At Dawn | PSP | Action Adventure
Holy crap, an actual action game for the PSP that's neither a port nor a soggy pile of ass. Everybody should know who Kratos is at this point; in Chains of Olympus, you explore his past life as an angry, angry hit man for the Olympian gods. Curiously this involves doing the exact same things you've always done. And lots and lots of QTEs... including threesome sex via QTE. (But it's cool, he still loves his wife.) I think there are enemies in these games too, but they're mostly minor distractions that get in the way of the QTEs.

Army of Two
EA | PS3/Xbox 360 | Buddy Co-Op Action
In a world influenced by the co-op aspect of Gears of War, many imitators rise. Some may be cheap (see Conflict: Denied Ops), but some may actually not suck. We're not entirely sure where Army of Two stands on that scale of cheap-to-not suck, but it's a brand new franchise by EA, and they delayed it for several month to fine-tune it after early reviews panned it. What could possibly go wrong?

Besides, whatever DOES go wrong, they'll just fix it in the sequel. You heard it here first: Army of Two II (or is that Army of Four?) coming Spring 2009.

Bully: Scholarship Edition
Rockstar | Xbox 360/Wii | Open World High School
Yes, this is the same controversial game that had those boys kissing, and also the one that Jack Thompson stated was "A nuisance to the state of Florida." I find it hard to believe that a simple video game is more a blight on Florida than those truck-sized roaches and all the retirees in pastel polyester slacks, but whatever. This time around, Bully has Achievements! And waggle! (NOTE: Not all versions contain both Achievements and waggle)

Ninja Reflex
EA | Wii/DS | Mini-game collection
Two new franchises from EA in one week? Has the world come to an end? No, it hasn't. They just like money. And what are two of the hottest things around? Ninjas and mini-game collections for the Wii. Leave it up to the business majors at EA to come up with the brilliant idea of mixing the two of them.

Could be worse. At least this project didn't start at the peak of "Two girls, one cup" mania. (Uh, don't Google that. Seriously, just don't.)

Petz Bunnyz
Ubisoft | DS | Animal Raising
Rabbits! Aren't they just so awesome? That's a trick question, of course they're awesome. It's a scientific fact that nobody can resist the allure of bunnies.

That's all. Ubi has you right by the cute-sensitive centers of the brain.

Downloadable Contentment: This Week in DLC

Super Turrican
Factor 5 | SNES via Wii | Shooting?
Back when I was a kid, I loved the original Turrican games for the Amiga so much that I used their sound test options to record their music to tape and even wrote a bit of fanfic in seventh grade. I never played the SNES versions, so I can't say if they're any good, but the Amiga ones sure were.

XBLA/PSN: Rocketman: Axis of Evil
Capcom | Brand new for Xbox 360/PS3 | Overhead Shooter
Based on WizKid's strategy game, but apparently totally lacking in the attendant strategy, opting instead for an Ikari Warriors-style overhead shooting action trip with scads of weapon upgrades.

Sigh. A turn-based take could have been really neat, too. Ah, well. At least we have Attack of the Genos, right?

Big in Japan: This Week's imports

Family Jockey
Bandai Namco | Wii | Sports
Nothing says "family togetherness" like short men abusively whacking horses on the ass in pursuit of questionably-legal gambling proceeds. And Bandai Namco knows family. I recommend you play this while wassailing with loved ones this Christmas.

Flower Sun and Rain
Grasshopper | DS | Adventure
A DS port of an early Grasshopper adventure game. I don't really know what makes it different from The Silver Affair or Michigan, but you can bet your sweet bippy that Ray does.

Metroid Prime 3: Corruption
Retro | Wii | FPS
At long last, the Metroid Prime trilogy draws to an-- waaaaait a damn minute. I'm almost certain I've played this before. Was it all just a dream?

Jigsaw Puzzle DS
Hudson | DS | Puzzle
I'm really not sure that "jigsaw puzzle assembly" was a niche that needed to be explored by video games, even for DS's casual gaming crowd, but since Hudson gussied it up with the same trade dress as the fantastic Illustlogic I'm gonna have to take a chance on it anyway.

Minna No Jyoushikiryoku TV
Nintendo | Wii | Mystery non-game
I don't know what this game is. My guess is that it's just five hours of Nintendo gloating because it won't give anyone else the necessary specs to allow them to use Miis in third-party games. Man, what a bunch of jerks.

Nobunaga's Ambition Eleventy-billion
Koei | PS2 | History thing
Can you change the outcome of Japanese history yet again? No doubt this iteration features even more preposterously-detailed fine-tuning and hilariously-dated visuals. You ten Koei fans are gonna love it.

Ryu Ga Gotoku 3
Sega | PS3 | Action
The third chapter in the Yakuza series arrives in Japan, and we still haven't even seen the second. I don't know about you guys but I'm totally holding out hope for a SIXAXIS-based tattoo minigame where you have to give the oyabun a full-body dragon and chrysanthemum tattoo without making a single mistake or else he kills your entire family. YATTA! IKUZE!!

Talk about how crappy these games are!