There's an old saying that states March "comes in like a lion and goes out like lamb." The first part of that is undoubtedly true this year when it comes to new releases, as this week sees a whole pride's worth of big game launches.
First and foremost among the new games is Mass Effect 3, the capper to BioWare's sci-fi role-playing game trilogy. Set for release on the PC, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360, Mass Effect 3 sees planet Earth under siege. The attackers are the reapers, a race of heavily armed sentient spacecraft that were central to the plot of the first Mass Effect. Players will once again take on the role of Shepard, who is now on the run from the shadowy pro-human organization Cerberus. To save Earth, Shepard must travel the galaxy trying to rally support from alien civilizations with varying degrees of sympathy.
This week also sees Capcom's latest fighting game crossover debut with Street Fighter X Tekken. As the name implies, the game sees the rosters of the two fighting game franchises take each other on in a series of tag team battles. Representing Street Fighter will be a number of the series' heavy hitters like Ryu, M. Bison, and Chun Li, while Tekken faithful can knuckle up with the likes of Kuma, Kazuya, and Heihachi.
Gamers who'd rather take swings of another kind can warm up for the new baseball season this week with Sony's MLB 12: The Show and 2K Sports' Major League Baseball 2K12 for a host of different platforms. 2K Sports is even offering an Xbox 360 combo pack for sports fanatics, bundling its latest baseball sim with last year's NBA 2K12 for $70.
Handheld diehards will also have a few new options to check out this week. On the PlayStation Vita, Sony releases the system's first dual-analog-stick shooter with Zipper Interactive's Unit 13. While over on the 3DS, Sega has Crush3D, the sequel to 2007's original dimension-crossing puzzle game Crush.
Finally, Ubisoft's long-awaited I Am Alive makes its debut as a downloadable game on the Xbox 360 this week. Originally announced at the 2008 Electronic Entertainment Expo, I Am Alive tells the story of an everyman who has lost his wife and daughter during a mysterious but cataclysmic event. This man returns to his hometown, Haventon, a year later to find the city in ruins, with its inhabitants taking "necessary actions" to survive. I Am Alive will sell for 1,200 Microsoft points ($15).
For further details, 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.
TUESDAY, MARCH 6
Mass Effect 3--X360, PS3, PC--Electronic Arts
Street Fighter X Tekken--X360, PS3--Capcom
MLB 12 The Show--PS3, Vita--Sony
MLB 2K12 - NBA 2K12 Combo Pack--X360--2K Sports
MLB 2K12--X360, PS3, Wii, PC, DS, PSP, PS2--2K Sports
Blades of Time--PS3, X360--Konami
Lego Harry Potter: Years 5-7--Vita--WBIE
The Sims 3: Showtime--PC, Mac--Electronic Arts
Top Gun: Hard Lock--X360, PS3--505 Games
Nicktoons MLB 3D--3DS--2K Play
Country Dance Kinect--X360--Game Mill
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 7
I Am Alive--X360--Ubisoft