Late Night Consoling

Happy Halloween, lots of news!
  • Wii launch lineup solidifies

    [nintendo]

    Nintendo has released a list of launch period games for Wii, consisting of 32 titles to be released in North America from the machine's November 19 launch until the end of calendar year 2006. As with PlayStation 3's recent launch lineup announcement, it is unclear which games will be available when the machine goes on sale, and which will come during the remainder of the year. The full list is as follows:

    Activision:
    - Treyarch's Call of Duty 3
    - Raven Software's Marvel Ultimate Alliance
    - Rapala Tournament Fishing
    - Toys for Bob's Tony Hawk's Downhill Jam
    - Left Field Productions' World Series of Poker: Tournament of Champions
    Atari:
    - Spike's Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi(TM) 2
    Atlus:
    - Atlus R&D 1's Trauma Center: Second Opinion
    Electronic Arts:
    - EA Canada/EA Tiburon's Madden NFL '07
    - EA Canada/EA Black Box's Need for Speed Carbon
    Konami:
    - Konami's Elebits
    Midway:
    - Midway Games' Happy Feet
    - Midway Games' Rampage: Total Destruction
    - Midway Games' The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy
    - A2M's The Ant Bully
    Nintendo:
    - Monster Games' Excite Truck
    - Nintendo's The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
    - Nintendo's Wii Sports (pack-in title)
    Sega:
    - Sega Studios' Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz
    SNK:
    - SNK/Terminal Reality's Metal Slug Anthology
    Tecmo:
    - Tecmo's Super Swing Golf
    THQ:
    - THQ Studio Australia's Avatar: The Last Airbender
    - Blue Tongue's Barnyard(R)
    - Incinerator Games/Rainbow Studios' Cars
    - Blitz Games' SpongeBob SquarePants: The Creature from the Krusty Krab
    Ubisoft:
    - Ubisoft Montreal's Far Cry: Vengeance
    - MTO's GT Pro Series
    - Monster 4X4 World Circuit
    - Ubisoft Montreal's Open Season
    - Ubisoft Montpellier's Rayman Raving Rabbids
    - Ubisoft Paris' Red Steel
    - Ubisoft Montreal's Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell Double Agent
    Vivendi:
    - Ice Age 2: The Meltdown

    Ubisoft's list of offerings, the biggest of any publisher at launch, was slightly reduced from eight to seven. Ubisoft Romania's Blazing Angels: Squadrons of WWII was previously announced but is not present on the list, suggesting it has been delayed.

  • The Collective takes on Dracula

    [ps3] [xbox360]

    Foundation 9 studio The Collective today announced that it is developing Harker, a new survival horror title based on Bram Stoker's classic novel Dracula. The game features the titular protagonist Jonathan Harker, who has sworn vengeance on all vampires after Dracula claims his wife Mina. In the game, players will hunt down and kill vampires via exploration, tracking, and close combat. "Harker's goal is to bring an in-your-face, visceral, and personal style of combat to the survival horror genre," said producer Nigel Cook. "None of these vampires are going to die with one shot. TheyÂ’re going to fight for their survival, which will give the player a huge level of satisfaction when they successfully execute one."

    No publisher has been announced for the game. The Collective did not specify for which platforms Harker is in development, but the company sent over several screenshots labeled "360," indicating that the game is coming at least to Xbox 360. It is likely headed to PlayStation 3 as well.

    Harker is planned for release some time in 2008.

  • 2K goes for The BIGS

    [ps2] [ps3] [xbox360] [nintendo] [psp]

    In early 2005, 2K Sports gained the exclusive rights to create third party console games based on the Major League Baseball license. Now, to complement its MLB 2K series of baseball sims, the company has announced The BIGS, an "over-the-top baseball action title" featuring power-ups, a more exaggerated graphical style, and an online four-player multiplayer mode. The BIGS is heading to PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Wii, and PSP courtesy of Blue Castle Games, under the direction of EA Sports MVP Baseball creator Dan Brady. 2K released a single screenshot of the game.

    2K plans to release Blue Castle Games' The BIGS in summer 2007.

  • More Wii Virtual Console launch details revealed

    [nintendo]

    Today, Nintendo as well as Sega and Hudson Soft announced their launch plans for Wii's Virtual Console service, which will feature titles from classic consoles and, later, newly developed games. The service will go live when Wii is released on November 19, 2006. In total, the system will start off with 30 titles from NES, Super NES, N64, Sega Genesis, and TurboGrafx-16. NES and Sega Genesis have the largest initial lineups, with twelve and ten respectively. As many expected, most of the launch titles are fairly well known among their platforms, as opposed to being lesser known cult favorites. The lineup is as follows:

    NES:
    - Mario Bros.
    - The Legend of Zelda
    - Donkey Kong
    - Donkey Kong Jr.
    - Ice Hockey
    - Pinball
    - Soccer
    - Tennis
    - Urban Champion
    - Wario's Woods
    - Baseball
    - Solomon's Key
    SNES:
    - F-Zero
    - SimCity
    Nintendo 64:
    - Super Mario 64
    Sega Genesis:
    - Sonic the Hedgehog
    - Altered Beast
    - Golden Axe
    - Columns
    - Ecco the Dolphin
    - Gunstar Heroes
    - Space Harrier II
    - Toe Jam & Earl
    - Ristar
    - Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine
    TurboGrafx-16:
    - Bonk's Adventure
    - Super Star Soldier
    - Victory Run
    - Bomberman '93
    - Dungeon Explorer

    Sega and Hudson also announced pricing details for their games. Sega Genesis titles will start out at 800 Wii Points ($8) and TurboGrafx-16 at 600 Wii Points ($6). Nintendo revealed its own pricing scheme last month, with NES games going for 500 Wii Points ($5), SNES games for 800 ($8), and N64 games for 1000 ($10).

  • Cooking Mama cooking up on Wii

    [nintendo]

    Publisher Majesco has announced that it will be publishing a Wii version of the well received Nintendo DS cooking simulator Cooking Mama. Cooking Mama: Cook Off, as the home console game is titled, will be developed by OfficeCreate, the developer behind the original game. The game will include a versus multiplayer mode, cuisine from over 10 different countries, and a total of over 300 real world recipes.

    Cooking Mama: Cook Off is set to ship in early 2007.

  • Saint's Row patched up

    [xbox360]

    According to posts on the official Volition forums, the company's Xbox 360 action game Saint's Row has received a title update via Xbox Live. Users have complained about various issues, including crash bugs, plaguing the game since its release, and today's update addresses those glitches as well as adds various features. In addition to improvements to general issues such as inconsistent widescreen support and sound problems, the game's multiplayer mode has been significantly overhauled. Check out the patch notes on the forums for a full list of changes.

  • Super Monkey Ball Banana Blitz blitzes to gold status

    [nintendo]

    Sega sends word that Super Monkey Ball Banana Blitz from Sega Studios (formerly Amusement Vision) has gone gold, making it the first Wii title to have been publically revealed as complete and ready for duplication. The game will manage to make it to store shelves before its console does, with a ship date of November 14. Wii goes on sale November 19, 2006.

  • Capcom wants your Monster Hunter opinions

    [psp]

    Capcom sends word that it has set up a survey for players or owners of Monster Hunter Freedom (PSP). The company is hoping to gather useful information on the game's infrastructure multiplayer mode, which will potentially help Capcom in the development of future titles. If you've played the game, check out the survey.

  • Kameo stacks the deck

    [xbox360]

    Microsoft has revealed this week's Xbox Live Arcade Wednesday release: an UNO deck themed around Rare's Kameo Elements of Power. Similarly, in September Microsoft released an UNO deck styled after Bizarre Creations' Project Gotham Racing 3. Like that release, the Kameo deck will run 100 Microsoft Points ($1.25). It will be available as of 1 a.m. Pacific Time via Xbox Live Marketplace.

Misc. Media/Previews

PS2/PS3

IGN takes a look at Ignition Banbury's Mercury Meltdown Remix (PS2). GameSpy checks out Harmonix's Guitar Hero II (PS2, also X360).

Xbox/X360

GameSpot has a preview of Capcom's Lost Planet (X360).

GCN/Wii

Nintendo has an interview between company president Satoru Iwata and the development team of The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess (Wii, GCN), speaking on the game's development. UK publication Official Nintendo Magazine has lengthy hands on impressions of the Wii version of The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess (Wii, also GCN). GameSpot UK checks out Monster Games' Excite Truck (Wii). 1UP checks out the Wii version of Ubisoft Montreal's Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell Double Agent (Wii, also PS2, Xbox, GCN, PS3, X360, PC).

Portable

1UP has a preview of Namco's Tales of the Tempest (NDS) and Capcom's Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Justice for All (NDS).

Console Game Of The Evening [Submit Yours!]

Shadowrun for the Super NES. "Though not exactly based purely off the PnP game of the same name, this RPG for the SNES is an awesome game. OMGWTFBBQ Cranium bomb!" (submitted by famine101)