There are two universal truths in gaming retail: Nobody wants to release a game against the latest Madden, and the annual release of EA's gridiron game signals an end to the summer release doldrums. Madden's tackling of stores last week means that now the industry's annual lemming-like race to the cliff with scores of hot new releases tripping over themselves for holiday spending dollars can begin.
This week will see the release of a DS debut for a Nintendo franchise character in Star Fox Command, THQ's first trip to the urban sandbox genre made popular by Grand Theft Auto III with Saints Row, a new expansion pack of Glamour Life Stuff for EA's popular Sims 2, and American McGee's satirical take on a disastrous 24 hours in the City of Angels, Bad Day L.A. And that's just for Monday!
The second, larger wave of releases ships out on Tuesday, with the third epidsode of the Xenosaga trilogy arriving in stores alongside the first Xbox 360 Japanese role-playing game (Enchanted Arms) and a sequel to Nippon Ichi's cult hit strategy game for the PlayStation 2, Disgaea. Tuesday will also see PlayStation Portable versions for a number of franchises, including 50 Cent: Bulletproof, Def Jam: Fight for NY, Super Monkey Ball Adventure, and Ultimate Ghosts 'n Goblins.
Thankfully, the release schedule peaks early, leaving gamers the back half of the week to enjoy their recent purchases or perhaps pick up late-shipping games like ProStroke Golf - World Tour 2007 for the Xbox and PS2 or Konami's downloadable revamp of Time Pilot for the Xbox 360.
This week's new releases are listed below. The list is taken from retailer information, so actual dates may vary. Contact your local retailer for availability.
50 Cent: Bulletproof G Unit Edition (PSP)
Enchanted Arms (Xbox 360)
Def Jam: Fight for NY: The Takeover (PSP)
Dance Factory (PS2)
Super Monkey Ball Adventure (PSP)
Disgaea 2: Cursed Memories (PS2)
Ultimate Ghosts 'n Goblins (PSP)
World Championship Poker: Featuring Howard Lederer - All In (PS2, PSP)
Xenosaga Episode III: Also Sprach Zarathustra (PS2)
One Piece: Grand Adventure (PS2, GC)
Bomberman: Act Zero (X360)
Harlem Globetrotters: World Tour (DS, GBA)
Prison Tycoon 2: Maximum Security (PC)
Yu-Gi-Oh Double Pack 2 (GBA)
Madagascar / Shrek: Super Slam 2-in-1 Combo Pack (DS)
Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Robots (GBA)
Rapala Trophies (PSP)