Last week Sackboy made a lauded return to the gaming scene in Little Big Planet 2, but this week's theme is focused more on horrid death.
Leading the week is Visceral Games' Dead Space 2 for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC. The game follows engineer protagonist Isaac Clarke, who fights snarling alien creatures on the Sprawl, an abandoned civilian space station anchored on one of Saturn's moons. The game will be available both in a standard $60 form and in a limited-edition $80 top-tier pack that bundles a replica plasma cutter, along with other goodies.
Also out this week is SouthPeak's Two Worlds II for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. First announced as an expansion pack in 2007, Two Worlds II was initially scheduled for an early 2008 release on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC. However, the fantasy role-playing game then picked up full sequel status, as well as multiple delays. The PC version is due out in February.
Two Worlds II picks back up with the original's hero, after having languished in prison for a number of years. Gamers find themselves first confronting the nefarious Gandahar (the villain from the original), before setting out on a new quest to save the world. The game also includes new cooperative multiplayer modes, where players can work together to build cities or team up to undertake a dozen story-driven quests.
On-the-go gamers looking for something new this week can pick up Square Enix's Lord of Arcana for the PSP. Primed to debut as a download via the PlayStation Network and at brick and mortar retail, the title revolves around a powerful stone called Arcana, said to be "the source of all order in the world."
Only the most powerful can lay claim to the stone, so players will need to hunt scores of monsters--which the publisher says have been designed by "world-renowned artists"--if they want to discover its secrets.
Third-person shooter fans can download Monday Night Combat for the PC this Monday. Originally pegged to be released last week, the game was pushed back a week by developer Uber Entertainment for additional polish. The title was released on Xbox Live Arcade over the summer as part of Microsoft's Summer of Arcade promotion, but come Monday it will no longer be an Xbox 360 exclusive.
Monday Night Combat will be available via Steam with features its XBLA cousin does not have. Dedicated servers, Steam achievements, controller support, "editor support," and unannounced "new features" will come bundled with the Steam edition of the third-person, class-based shooter.
For further details on the week's games, visit GameSpot's New Releases page. The full list of downloadable games on the PlayStation Store, Xbox Live Marketplace, and Wii Shop Channel will be revealed later this week. Release dates are based on retailer listings and are subject to change.
MONDAY, JANUARY 24
Monday Night Combat--PC--Uber Entertainment
TUESDAY, JANUARY 25
Dead Space 2--X360, PC, PS3--Electronic Arts
Lord of Arcana--PSP--Square Enix
Paws & Claws: Marine Rescue--DS--THQ
Two Worlds II--X360, PS3--SouthPeak Games
THURSDAY, JANUARY 27
World of Tanks--PC--Wargaming.net