If you happen to be both a comics fan and a gamer, then you may find yourself frequently struggling to decide where to spend your precious entertainment dollars each month. Regular CBR readers no doubt get all the latest information about what’s coming up in the comics world, but what about the games?
Beginning with this installment, CBR News will be putting together a monthly roundup of video game releases, highlighting some of the titles that may have you trimming your comics subscription list or applying for a second job in order to afford. Keep in mind, the list is not inclusive of every game for a given month, and release dates are always subject to change, and some games launch on certain platforms before others.
Infinite Undiscovery (Xbox 360) – September 2 – Website
Time was, you couldn’t find a Japanese RPG on the Xbox 360. Nowadays, it seems like there’s one coming out every other week. This latest entry into the genre is developed by Tri-Ace and published by Square Enix. The main story of “Infinite Undiscovery” follows a young boy who is trying to free his world from enslavement, while the gameplay features a large cast of characters and a real-time battle system with an emphasis on strategy.
Facebreaker (Xbox 360/PS3) – September 5 – Website
Remember “Punch-Out”? How about “Ready 2 Rumble?” EA hopes so, as they are bringing back the arcade style boxing game with “Facebreaker.” The game features cartoon-style graphics and the ability to deform your opponents’ faces in real time. The big news, however, is that you’ll be able to create boxers using real photos, meaning you can put yourself and your friends into the game and then virtually pummel each other senseless. Over at the EA site, they’ve even created some celebrities (like Samuel L. Jackson, George Bush and Bruce Lee) that you can download into your game.
Spore (PC) – September 7 – Website
This is the latest project from “Sims” designer Will Wright, and arguably his most ambitious. With the ability to take a species from a microorganism to a space-faring civilization, the scope of “Spore” is absolutely huge. Players will be able to create their own species and upload it to a database (the Sporepedia), where it can be downloaded into another player’s game. Gameplay features a mixture of real time strategy and simulation, with players needing to help their species both survive and evolve.
Star Wars: Force Unleashed (Multi) – September 16 – Website
Set between Episodes III and IV of the Star Wars saga, “Force Unleashed” follows the story of Darth Vader’s secret apprentice. In addition to the story, the big selling point of the game is the physics, which allow for some amazing displays of the power of the Force. In August, Dark Horse released a 104-page comic that adapts the game’s storyline. A novelized version of the story was also released in August.
Harvest Moon: Tree of Tranquility (Wii) – September 16
Do you like farming? Have you been looking for a game that will let you use the Wiimote as a watering can? Then “Harvest Moon: Tree of Tranquility” may be for you. This farming simulation is the first entry of the popular franchise made specifically for the Wii, and features a storyline about a magical tree, a goddess and lots of crop harvesting! Players manage the farm, take care of pets, form relationships, and even get married and have children. The cute art style and light tone of the game also make this one very kid-friendly.
Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning (PC) – September 18 – Website
Based on Games Workshop’s epic fantasy setting, “Warhammer Online” is an MMO that features an ongoing battle between the forces of Order and Destruction. Players will be able to choose careers in different armies under each faction and wage war in both large and small scale battles. People who preorder the game will have access to the open beta, bonus in-game items, and a chance to start playing in the game world before the official launch.
On a side note, if you’re into the Warhammer world, BOOM! Studios has released several comics series that are based in that universe.
De Blob (Wii) – September 22 – Website
“De Blob” taps into the finger painter in all of us. Players will assume the role of the titular hero as he tries to save Chroma City from I.N.K.T., an evil corporation that has taken over the city and outlawed color. Gameplay involves splattering color all over the landscape, as each new color and combination brings new life to the city.
LEGO Batman (Multi) – September 23 – Website
Does this game even need to explained? Actually, yes. Even those familiar with “LEGO Star Wars” and “LEGO Indiana Jones” will be pleased to see that developer Traveler’s Tales is not just resting on past successes with this one. In addition to the usual slew of unlockable characters, players will be able to play from both the heroes and the villains’ perspectives, allowing them to experience the story from each side.
Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood (DS) – September 30 – Website
Sonic the Hedgehog in an RPG for the Nintendo DS? Before you dismiss this one as a bad idea, it’s important to point out that the game is developed by Bioware, the makers of “Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic” and “Mass Effect.” The story in this one involves Sonic’s friend Knuckles being kidnapped, and the mysterious disappearance of the Chaos Emeralds.
For those who are interested, Archie Comics also ran a backup story in “Sonic the Hedgehog” #191 that ties into the upcoming game.
Legendary (Multi) – September 30 – Website
During a heist, an art thief unwittingly opens Pandora’s Box, unleashing ancient creatures of lore upon an unsuspecting world. “Legendary” is a first-person shooter in which you’ll be battling Griffons, Minotaurs and Werewolves through huge levels set in London and New York. Your goal is to stop the invasion and save the world from the horrors you’ve let out.
Around the time of the game’s release, a 96-page graphic novel written by Mark Waid will also be arriving in stores.
Mega Man 9 (Xbox 360/PS3/Wii) – September
The first numbered sequel in the franchise since 1996, CAPCOM is brining the beloved Mega Man series back to its roots. The graphics of the game are rendered in 8-bit fashion, right down to the flickering and slowdown that was common during the NES era (you can turn that off if you don’t want it). The game will also introduce the first ever female boss into the series, Splash Woman. There’s no hard date on this one, but word is that it will hit the Wii and Xbox 360 sometime in September.
And that wraps it up for the September edition of the CBR Games Roundup. The holiday gaming season is really starting to get underway, so check back in 30 as we take a look at the October releases. Also, keep an eye out in the coming weeks for exclusive interviews with some of the developers of the games detailed above.
Did we miss something? Did your most anticipated game of the year not make this month’s list? Head over to the boards and let us know!