Shippin' Out 9/11-9/15: Hockey, Lego Star Wars, Mario Hoops

NHL 07 and NHL 2K7 face off, Legos take on Episodes IV-VI, and Mario brings his game to the DS.

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It was definitely game time this past weekend as millions of Americans gathered around their television sets to get a look at their local football teams kick off the NFL season. The lull between NFL games won't be too painful for gamers, however, as plenty of new releases will available between now and the next helping of chicken wings.

Gamers can go from chucking pigskin to throwing octopi this week, with two new hockey releases preparing to cash in on the beginning of the professional hockey season in early October. Electronic Arts is releasing NHL 07 for the Xbox 360, Xbox, PlayStation 2, PC, and PlayStation Portable, and 2K Sports is shipping out NHL 2K7 for the Xbox 360 and Xbox (a PlayStation 2 version is due later this month).

Right on the tail of the onset of hockey's pro season is the beginning of the NBA season, but it appears only one company is ready to dribble out a basketball game. With EA and 2K Sports set to release their games toward the end of the month, Nintendo is stepping up with Mario Hoops 3 on 3 for the Nintendo DS. However, instead of lanky millionaires throwing balls through hoops, the characters on the court are familiar faces from Nintendo's catalog, including Mario, Donkey Kong, and Princess Peach.

Also releasing this week is LEGO Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy for the Xbox 360, Xbox, PlayStation 2, GameCube, Game Boy Advance, DS, PSP, and PC. As the title suggests, the game takes on the first three Star Wars movies from the 1970s and 1980s, with a universe built out of the famous children's building blocks.

On the opposite spectrum of action games is THQ's Company of Heroes, a visceral PC real-time strategy game set during World War II. The well-reviewed game puts players smack-dab in the middle of the Allies' push into Nazi-controlled Europe and offers a multiplayer mode for up to eight combatants.

Offbeat games are also in season this week, with two of the stranger offerings making their way to US shores from Japan. Atlus localized the eerie PS2 action game Rule of Rose, and Majesco has imported the wacky DS culinary puzzle game, Cooking Mama.

This week's new releases are listed below (list taken from retailer information--actual dates may vary).

SEPTEMBER 11, 2006
Hoyle Puzzle and Board Games 2007 (PC)
Backyard Baseball 2007 (PC)
Mario Hoops 3 on 3 (DS)
Hoyle Casino 2007 (PC)
Hoyle Card Games 2007 (PC)
Fuel (Xbox)

SEPTEMBER 12, 2006
LEGO Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy (X360, Xbox, PS2, GC, GBA, DS, PSP, PC)
Joint Task Force (PC)
NHL 07 (X360, Xbox, PS2, PC, PSP )
NHL 2K7 (X360, Xbox)
Rule of Rose (PS2)
Cooking Mama (DS)
Harvest Moon DS (DS)
Faces of War (PC)
Mega Man ZX (DS)
Age of Pirates: Caribbean Tales (PC)
Blitzkrieg: Green Devils (PC)
ProStroke Golf - World Tour 2007 (Xbox)
Bounty Hounds (PSP)
Disney's Little Einsteins (GBA)
The Cheetah Girls (GBA)
My Little Pony: Crystal Princess Runaway Rainbow (GBA)
One Piece: Pirates Carnival (GC, PS2)
Avatar: The Last Airbender (PC)
Rengoku II: The Stairway to H.E.A.V.E.N. (PSP)
MechAssault: Phantom War (DS)
IGPX: Immortal Grand Prix (PS2)
Bomberman (PSP)

SEPTEMBER 13, 2006
Scramble (X360--via Xbox Live Marketplace)

SEPTEMBER 14, 2006
Company of Heroes (PC)
Great Invasions (PC)

SEPTEMBER 15, 2006
Galaxy of Games 5000 (PC)

Discussion

37 comments
_Sam_
_Sam_

I didn't love the first lego star wars, but I was compelled to beat it in about a day :P

SoraTheExtreme
SoraTheExtreme

thebuft: yeah cause EA's hockeygames has never been all alike *ironic overkill*

wildsoul0509
wildsoul0509

Mario bros. always have a sport videogame, now is turn of the DS to have one. that's great!

thebuft
thebuft

good week for gamers bit i also agree with hotdork70minus1 "Sad to say but 2k is pretty pathetic this year around. They just slapped last years game in more gloss."

hotdork70minus1
hotdork70minus1

Sad to say but 2k is pretty pathetic this year around. They just slapped last years game in more gloss. I am loving the new NHL 07 controls in this demo and it's about time some one changed them for the better. The game seems much more fluid and I can't wait to play the full version.

LordAndrew
LordAndrew

I don't think anyone wants to buy Age of Pirates: Caribbean Tales anyway.

alexistheshitbe
alexistheshitbe

did the 360 version of NHL 2K7 get pushed back along with the ps2 version? as of september 12, it still hasn't hit store shelves and one guy at EB games said it had glitches that needed to be fixed so it may be another week or two until it comes out.

Gamepro2421
Gamepro2421

finallly, some more good games on the DS, Starfox (i know that came out like a week ago but still this month) hoops, Harvest moon, Mega man, Lego II and cooking mama...yes boys and girls...cooking mama. So which one should i trade in my New Super Mario Bros. for? i'm thinkin either Harvest Moon, Hoops, or Starfox....any thoughts?

DarkJedi8_basic
DarkJedi8_basic

Just a heads up that Age of Pirates: Caribbean Tales is STARFORCE protected. Do NOT buy.

SoraTheExtreme
SoraTheExtreme

SavoyPrime yeah, the first LEGO StarWars was awsome, made the story even better than the movies (ep. 1,2,3 are kinda crappy) I can't wait to see Luke, Solo and Leia blast away in blocks=)=)

boxcarracer565
boxcarracer565

PiMacleod_basic "bungie milking halo" ??? theres only been 2 halo games (soon 2 b three) and they sold like crazy. your retarded.

SavoyPrime
SavoyPrime

I'm gonna check out Lego Star Wars II.

SoraTheExtreme
SoraTheExtreme

I did'nt mean that you cannot re-use but to take a character and just milk title after title where you place the character out of place. Like Mariosports games or like Sonic The Riders... but I must admit that Mario Golf/Tennis Advance is great games (but that's mostly for the RPGstyle storymode and that Mario ain't the star of the show) Sadly Mario has'nt starred in a true Mario-game since Super Mario World... the 3D crap just did'nt make it in my eyes. But I have'nt gotten my hands on New SMB yet and I've heard alot of good things from friends about it.

Jebril
Jebril

"you want 5 Mario games that are bad? Mario 64 DS Mario Baseball Mario Strikers Paper Mario 2 Mario Party 4-7" Ok Mario 64 DS (8.4) is definetly not bad and neither is Paper Mario Thousand Years Door, (got a 9.2 gamespot), no Mario game has ever earned the "Bad" or "Poor" grading on gamespot and as a fact most have earned great or superb, it's rare where you will see fair for a mario game and those happen pretty much only on Mario Parties. Unlike Sega which milks Sonic but gets "Bad" and "Poor" gradings on gamespot quite a number of time.

King_Dodongo
King_Dodongo

i'm waiting for harvest moon, mechassault and mario hoops!

Pfilosophy
Pfilosophy

If only more shops were selling Cooking Mama. I'd totally have gotten it from Gamexpress.com - hate hate Gamestop lately.

dennis_phong
dennis_phong

I might actually get Cooking Mama LOL!!!

PRDSTexas
PRDSTexas

How is it pathetic to use something that you created? You expect them to come up with some new fantastic character on every game they want to make? You come up with 10 new, original, not even close to anything else that anyone has every come up with before in the history of anything. Then, you go present that original, never before seen, non-likeness of anything ever created before, character of yours to a game company. Let me know how that works out for you. These people can't come up with some badass character everytime they make a game just cause you think they should. Companies have to reuse their best characters to stay in business and make people ,who aren't like you, happy. Because 90% of gamers love all those reused characters, they keep playing the games with those reused characters, and keep the companies who are making them in business, because they want more games with that badass reused character! Nintendo would've gone out of business a long time ago without reusing Zelda, Mario and Metroid....think about it..

DontEatCream
DontEatCream

Bungie only made Halo and Halo 2. They're not milking anything. It's not their fault if everybody loves their games, but they ain't shoving it down gamers' throats by making one every 6 months or something.

SoraTheExtreme
SoraTheExtreme

Well, since I have a mind of my own I don't listen to reviewers I play the game my self and make my own opinion... many companies milk their best characters/games and that is pathetic... (you want 5 Mario games that are bad? Mario 64 DS Mario Baseball Mario Strikers Paper Mario 2 Mario Party 4-7)

gohantech00
gohantech00

Wow, Rule of Rose is already out? Dang. Can't wait for the review

PiMacleod_basic
PiMacleod_basic

yeah, Nintendo is definately milking the Mario thing... just like Square is milking Final Fantasy... and Bungie for Halo... and Blizzard for Warcraft... and Sega for Sonic.... .....wow, maybe this is a trend?! You create a good character/series, and you use him/them! Don't make me bring up the countless amount of Mega Mans....and besides, can you name 5 BAD Mario games (that are actually reviewed as 'bad', and not just your biased opinion)? didn't think so. His sports games are actually very good games. Personally looking forward to the new Strikers on Wii.

SoraTheExtreme
SoraTheExtreme

Oh my God... Nintendo just won't give up milking Mariogames... first Mario Party (where are we, 6 or 7?) and all those crappy sportsgames that just insults sports... I feel sorry for the gamingworld when one of the greatest companies of the whole industry has lost it so completely...

Destman
Destman

Company of Heroes shipped September 11th, not the 14th. It is already in stores.

LoWpS
LoWpS

megaman zx and mario hoops look good...

Smartiepants
Smartiepants

I got Lego Star Wars 2 today - fantastic. Looking forward to Rule of Rose, too.

XNbuck
XNbuck

grrrr... i wish EA would make some DS hockey. and a DS baseball game from ANYONE would be nice... how about some Pennant Chase DS, ninty??

blackIceJoe
blackIceJoe

I am going to pick up LEGO Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy loved the first one so I think this one should be good too.

SR71halo
SR71halo

but Bomberman doesn't seem to be out yet :(