The Last Word: May 17-21

Early looks at Sonic 4 and EA MMA, praise for Red Dead Redemption and Super Mario Galaxy 2, and the continuing celebration of Video Game History Month punctuate another busy week of coverage.

It has been another packed week of GameSpot coverage, starting with some early looks at big games on the horizon, including EA MMA, Sonic the Hedgehog 4, and Madden 11. The reviews team had an exceptionally busy (but exceptionally enjoyable) week marked by high review scores for Red Dead Redemption, Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands, Sin and Punishment: Successor of the Skies, and the first GameSpot "10" score since Metal Gear Solid 4: Super Mario Galaxy 2. The monthlong examination of the past also continued, as Video Game History Month dug up memories of the PlayStation 2 launch, Starcraft, Will Wright, and the 3DO.

Clearly, Mario is flying high again.

The Last Word May 17-21

FEATURES
Did you know that May is Video Game History Month? GameSpot's special-report coverage of the world of video games continues with more chronicles of the biggest events and games of yesteryear, plus the staff's top picks for the upcoming 2010 Electronic Entertainment Expo--the single biggest gaming event of the year.

Editors' Choice Most Anticipated Games of E3
Video Game History Month: PS2 Launch
Video Game History Month: Starcraft
Video Game History Month: Will Wright
Video Game History Month: 3DO

NEW RELEASES

Shippin' Out May 16-22: Red Dead Redemption, Alan Wake, Prince of Persia
Frogger hops on DSiWare bandwagon
Rocket Knight blasts off on PSN
Metal Slug XX locked, loaded for XBLA launch

NEWS
It was another busy week on the GameSpot news desk, full of release dates, rumors, financial reports, and more. Things kicked off Monday morning with the confirmation of a release date for Square Enix's Disney crossover action role-playing game Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep, and kept rolling through Friday's announcement of a PC release for Fable III.

The string of quarterly financial reports also stretched through the week, with Square Enix, Ubisoft, and GameStop posting their results for the most recently completed quarters. As is often the case with such events, related points of interest also spilled out in the accompanying SEC filings and analyst conference calls. Ubisoft told analysts it was delaying Ghost Recon: Future Soldier, expressed an interest in adopting EA's Online Play tactics, and boasted that it had shipped 9 million copies of Assassin's Creed II.

The week also saw a number of simply unusual news bits, from the revelation that a Rollercoaster Tycoon feature film is in the works, to the equally eyebrow-raising announcement of Super Street Fighter IV-branded HDTVs. Developer Irrational Games even gave gamers a peek behind the creative curtain, releasing the first nine pages of the original pitch document for 2007's hit first-person shooter BioShock.

Fable III PC launch confirmed
Sonic the Hedgehog 4 hits a speed bump
Phantasy Star Portable 2 coming to North America, Europe
Original BioShock pitch document released
GameStop posts biggest non-holiday quarter ever
Street Fighter IV gets its own HDTVs
Halo novels get a makeover
Crystal Dynamics on Lara Croft's new direction
Top Gun kicking tires, lighting fires this summer
Acclaim acquired by social publisher Playdom
UFC 2010 Undisputed's online mode locked
Heavy Rain falling on Hollywood - Report
World of Warcraft charging for remote auction house service
Dragon Quest IX lands in West in July
PixelJunk Shooter 2 in production
Ubisoft 'probably' adopting EA online model, five MMOGs in development
Final Fantasy sells 5.5 million, Arkham Asylum commits 3.24 million
Ghost Recon: Future Soldier pushed further into future
Assassin's Creed II ships 9 million, Ubisoft posts $54 million annual loss
Rollercoaster Tycoon taking on big screen
Scribblenauts sequel goes Super
Kingdom Hearts PSP hits September 7

PREVIEWS
With just weeks to go until the 2010 Electronic Entertainment Expo, GameSpot has tons of new updates for upcoming games on all platforms, with much more to follow in the coming days as GameSpot's previews group gears up for the big show. This week brought with it updates for EA Sports MMA, Madden NFL 11, Mafia II, Tron Evolution, and much, much more.

EA Sports MMA Hands-On
Battlefield: Bad Company 2 Onslaught Co-Op Hands-On
Madden NFL 11: Bringing It to the Booth
Mafia II Updated Hands-On - PhysX, APEX, and 3D Vision
Arcania: Gothic 4 Q&A - First Impressions Plus Story Details
Tron Evolution Pre-E3 Hands-On Interview

REVIEWS
This year has the potential to be remembered as one of the all-time greats where new game releases are concerned. The same can be said of this month and, to get even more granular, of this week. Within the space of just seven days, store shelves already full of great games have had to make room for Alan Wake, Red Dead Redemption, Super Mario Galaxy 2, Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands, and Split/Second. Sleepless nights be damned, it's a great time to be a GameSpot reviewer.

2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa (PSP) Review
Dementium II (DS) Review
Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands (PS3/X360) Review
Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands (Wii) Review
Red Dead Redemption (PS3/X360) Review
Rocket Knight (PS3/X360) Review
Sin and Punishment: Successor of the Skies (Wii) UK Review
Split/Second (PC/PS3/X360) Review
Super Mario Galaxy 2 (Wii) Review
Things on Wheels (X360) Review

VIDEO
The GameSpot Live crew had a big week for video content on the site. Three new episodes of Today on the Spot took a look at games like F1 2010, Dead to Rights: Retribution "GAC Pack" DLC, Ivy the Kiwi, and more. GameSpot EIC Ricardo Torres talked to the fine folks at Sega about Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode 1 and showed off a new trailer for the game. Video reviews exploded this week with awesome looks at Split/Second, Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands, and Red Dead Redemption. This week's Game Night was pushed out to the viewers live for a longer look at Red Dead Redemption multiplayer, and GameSpot rounds out the week with an episode of Now Playing: Super Mario Galaxy 2.

Super Mario Galaxy 2 Video Review
Today on the Spot - F1 2010
Split/Second Video Review
Red Dead Redemption Video Review
Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands Video Review
Community Game Night: Red Dead Redemption
Now Playing: Super Mario Galaxy 2

Written By

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Discussion

65 comments
Get_Shorty
Get_Shorty

Oh Man time to get back to Super Mario Galaxy 1 and finish it up so I can get the highly rated sequel!

demonic_85
demonic_85

reply to Marques123, I've had my 360 for over 2 years now and I think most of the bugs have been worked out. Even the older units are not bad so long as you keep them as cool as possible. There are some great games unique to that system that make it worth buying. I bought a PS3 for the unique games it has and so far i've enjoyed it more than the Xbox but the PS3 has a few small problems as well. No system is perfect but they all have some good stuff.

fggsxfgf
fggsxfgf

Oh man; time to buy another Wii! :-)

Marques123
Marques123

I'd love to have a 360 but the problems that plague that system make me so leary about purchasing one. Guess I'll stick with my Wii and PS3. Can't wait to try SMG2!!!!

Petercairns
Petercairns

I cant believe it...last 10 was MGS 4, i think..? This most be good! Coz i trust you Gamespot...and Tom

DSfanatic5
DSfanatic5

The only way to win is to own every system. The Wii is slow, and is mostly plagued by titles using the phrases such as "Sports, Party, Games, Winter, Summer, etc. However, just as the Wii owner feels ripped off, Nintendo busts out something like Super Mario Galaxy 2, and somehow it's all worth it. Xbox 360: I'm on my third console, and while your system is likely to fail on you, you can't help but love the dedication to gamers that Microsoft has implemented through Xbox Live. Currently playing: Alan Wake. An amazing game, only available on Xbox 360, and it haunts me every night I play it. But what game am I most anticipating? Easily The Last Guardian, only available on the PS3, and will undoubtedly be my favorite game of this generation. And even with all these great next-gen experiences, I'll probably still log more time in on my DS with Picross 3-D, so I don't have any room to complain.

aGiantSquirrel
aGiantSquirrel

@metalkid9 Milking a franchise means more than just contiually making games in a series. Milking a franchise is when a company creates a really good game, and then the following games in the series get progressively worse. They make a good franchise, then later make crappy sequels and put a good name on it. There is one BIG problem with saying that Nintendo is ''milking' the mario franchise, which is that the newer marios are still AMAZING. A perfect 10!!! and you call that Milking??? NO! Milking is like the Tony Hawk series that started amazing and progressively got really bad. Like proving grounds. Theres a perfect example. Cant believe you would say something bad about Mario. Thats almost sacreligous to the gaming community. Mario is more that an icon for Nintendo, its an icon for the entire video game industry!

aGiantSquirrel
aGiantSquirrel

@y0ur_grandma You can say whatever about Nintendo, but how many 360 games ever get a perfect 10??? I think the 360 is the only modern console without a perfect 10 exclusive. Gotta respect Nintendo though. I dont have a Wii yet, but Nintendo is starting to get a really good library, gamers arent loyal to one company, they simply go to where the good games are, and Nintendo is delivering!

aGiantSquirrel
aGiantSquirrel

I have a PS3,360 and I used to think that theyre werent many games for the Wii to justify buying one. NOT any more! THe new mario game looks amazing. WOrth buying a Wii just for that. Plus, a new metroid at the end of the year, and possibly, new info about a future Zelda at E3. The Wii is getting some good stuff, not just shovelware. Im jealous I dont have a Wii for the new Mario game. I will need to fix that problem...

XanderKage
XanderKage

7.5 is a high score? Also, I hate R* for not making PC versions of their games, other then GTA... I want RDR!!! =(

reeree746
reeree746

RDR seems like a really cool game.

Fundamenta
Fundamenta

Let me quote Aaron Webber, Sega COMMUNITY Manager. "It's the first time in the last ten years if not even longer, if ever, that we've taken feedback from sonic fans, and are actually making changes to a sonic game based on that." I don't know if anyone realizes how terrible that is. A game developer should ALWAYS look to the community. Granted this certainly explains alot. I was beginning to wonder who the person was that said they wanted Sonic as a Werewolf.

guitarist1980
guitarist1980

GTA didnt really appeal to me even though I saw the brilliance of it.. Red Dead Redemption is very similar but for whatever reason I love it. Wierd making another skin really does help sometimes...

metalkid9
metalkid9

@motorola29, I can't believe people actually thumbed you up. Are you talking about a milking franchise? In my book there are only TWO GAMES that came out for Gears. Now tell me how many mario games have been out? That's right you can't count because there were soooo many right? The amount of irony in your comment is overwhelming. And the thumb ups dont help either becasue it show most people agree with you... sad

afromone3000
afromone3000

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

afromone3000
afromone3000

Sonic 4 on iphone?! WOOOOOP! Happy days : D

Tremblay343
Tremblay343

motorola29, I agree that that guy was wrong, but Gears have only had 2 games in the franchise...how are they milking it? Epic hasn't even had time to finish the trilogy.

Flint247
Flint247

Prepare for Liftoff! (SMG2)

Superzone
Superzone

I'm picking up both Red Dead and Mario Galaxy 2 on Wednesday. It's gonna be a while before I leave my house after that......

Pete5506
Pete5506

Been playing a tom of Red Dead this week

tbs76
tbs76

Red Dead Redemtion was definitely the suprise title of the year so far. I just wasn't expecting all that much, but it turned out to be so much more than GTA in the wild west. It has so much to do, the graphic details are amazing and the multiplayer is a hoot. It might not be for everyone, but I think those who give this game an honest try will be playing it for a long time to come.

motorola29
motorola29

"Can we please stop milking Mario. SMG 2 fails and so does Nintendo." Says the guy with a Gears of War avatar lol, talk about a milking franchise

pjordan0404
pjordan0404

red dead could've gotten a 10 if it didn't have all of those bugs

CHICHO86
CHICHO86

to everyone who keeps calling me a fanboy. ur rite i am a fanboy. im a fanboy of good games. so suck me

dagamemon
dagamemon

*reads Super Mario Galaxy 2 review* Dammit, that's four times this year that i get slapped in the face for not having a Wii (SMG2, Red Steel 2, No More Heroes 2, and Tatsunoko vs. Capcom)

Units420
Units420

Sad that a great time for gaming in general is being soured by some irrational fanboys..... And I say this as someone who owns both a Wii and 360 (though currently out of commission due to some E74 crap). I will def be picking up SMG2 soon and hopefully try out Red Dead Redemption at some point And chicho86, they probably paid them the same they paid everyone else apparently....Get over it dude. This game is getting the praise everywhere. This is aint no bribery or fluke

y0ur_grandma
y0ur_grandma

Can we please stop milking Mario. SMG 2 fails and so does Nintendo.

Sonicplys
Sonicplys

How fitting that SMG 2 was released on Video Game History Month since that game IS the definitive definition of what a video game is.

CHICHO86
CHICHO86

Sure RDR is almost like GTA but its also way different. and just because motion controls are popular with kids does not make them an innovation. i hate motion controls and i know plenty of people who hate them as well. and no its not because we are out of shape. motion controls will soon fade out.

BasilVZero
BasilVZero

Gonna get Super Mario Galaxy 2, cant wait *-*

CHICHO86
CHICHO86

also i wanna know how much nintendo payed GS to give galaxy 2 a 10. GTA 4 got a 10 and RDR is better than that game and got a worse score. all im saying is its a little fishy

CHICHO86
CHICHO86

of course u all assume im a fanboy. what has galaxy 2 done to improve the genre. i have played that game and its like playing mario on the 64 where red dead is fun and innovative on the open world genre

Dill-Man
Dill-Man

Haven't played SMG2 yet, but RDR is just incredible. Great year for games so far: ME2, RDR, and SMG2 I guarantee are going to be 3 of the defining games for this generation.

EnDeR2015
EnDeR2015

alan wake sux, one of the crappiest games ever

Gruug
Gruug

The only game that does anything or me is Red Dead Redemption. Have been playing it since release and can't seem to put it down. Great game!

jasper-ah-
jasper-ah-

gggreat summer...its not?!why? mafia 2. singularity.brink. kane and lynch. rage [maybe].starcraft.red dead redemtion.alpha protocol.super mario.new pack of bad company.sonic.soccer world cup and e3 is on the way too! whats wrong?

jasper-ah-
jasper-ah-

gggreat summer is in front of us dudes,lol.

jasper-ah-
jasper-ah-

gggggreat summer is in front of us dudes,lol.

jasper-ah-
jasper-ah-

gggggreat summer is in front of us dudes,lol.

yugiohfan99
yugiohfan99

I have to say it now, but even though we're only halfway through the year, and a bunch of great games have been released, and still yet to be released, I think SMG2 might get GotY, again. A 10/10 score is amazing, and that means it's even better than SMG, which also won GotY.

Gladestone1
Gladestone1

Im about 50 percent into red dead an its been awesome..Ive done 40 missions an im 30 hours in..Now thats a great game..Let me tell you its addicting an its fun as heck..Im an animal lover but let me tell you, its actually fun to skin a animal in the game..Im taking it just as a game is all..The plots the story line the cut scenes theres a lot of them..Its been interesting every one..From the old cars like the model ts..The red eye tool is interesting..The whole game is a great experiance even if you dont like westerns..Lassoing people is just as fun as there trying to escape you.. Im also looking forward to mario galaxy 2 an alpha protocol an tiger woods 11 wii..

SillySkeleton
SillySkeleton

I'm very jealous of all the wii owners that get to experience Mario Galaxy 2. Fortunately the other consoles got their own AAA title this month. Red Dead is incredible, and I'm relieved that it turned out to be as good as it looked before its release. It's still too early to call, but so far it's looking like the Game of the Year awards will be a fistfight between Mario and John Marsden.

grasshopper6
grasshopper6

how is crap like Madden 11 considered big games for this year

Flint247
Flint247

Keep up the superb work, Nintendo.

firesage
firesage

super mario galaxy was a superb game that showed the wii's capabilities with graphics and gameplay to the best, it was an awesome game and its hard to think that a sequel would outdo it when so many sequals flop compared to the predecessor of the games, but mario outdid their predecessor and got the first 10 for wii, good job showing people how great the system really can be when given the time into a game, however I am not suprised seeing how important mario is to nintendo, they only expect the best from mario and I know they would not release nothing except the best from the mario direct franchise, and thats why they released this one on time, because they saw that it was the best and can now be released, i preordered this game and know that I would not be disappointed and gamespot as just validated my thoughts and cant wait to get my hands on this game myself

thom_maytees
thom_maytees

The announcement that Super Mario Galaxy 2 received the first 10.0 score at GameSpot in nearly two years would mark it as one of the highlights and great surprises at the gaming site this week and perhaps this year. Most people did not expect this to happen, as I predicted that Galaxy 2 would at best receive 9.5. Because of its score, upcoming games would also need to score a 10.0 or a 9.5 to ever have a very good chance of winning this year's Game of the Year award for 2010. We will have to see what happens in the second half of this year.

GCwasthebestsys
GCwasthebestsys

Galaxy One is my favorite game of all time. It is beyond perfect to me, I remember first jumping and controlling Mario in SMG more than any other gaming experience. i thought i had mastered 3d mario controls by playing through Mario64 _?teen times. i love that this new game seems to emphasize mastering the controls. long jump and the RETURN of the reverse-of-direction-side-somersault!!!! now all we need in SMG3 is the return of the face-forward belly slide ala 64

BloodMist
BloodMist

i knew Mario Galaxy 2 would be great but, wow, a perfect 10 eh?And not just from GS, but from a buncha different sites.That's amazing.