Gold Rush 3/14: The Godfather, Blazing Angels, Warship Gunner 2

Electronic Arts' multiplatform mob epic finally shakes down production as Ubisoft's air-combat sim and Koei's naval sim take off for the factory.

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In March 2004, Electronic Arts announced it was adapting the 1972 mob-movie epic The Godfather. Though its director, Francis Ford Coppola, voiced his objections to the game, several stars of the film agreed to lend their voices to the project, including Robert Duvall, James Caan, and the late Marlon Brando. Featuring free-roaming Grand Theft Auto-style gameplay, the crime action game is set in a detailed recreation of 1940s New York City, as detailed in this recent GameSpot preview.

Originally set for a Holiday 2005 release, The Godfather was delayed last summer--a move that whacked EA's share price. While the Xbox 360 and PlayStation Portable editions remain set for release "later in 2006," the publisher announced today that development was finished for the PC, Xbox, and PlayStation 2 versions of the crime action game. All versions are rated M for Mature, and the current-generation console and PC editions will retail for $39.99 when they go on sale next week.

Slightly overshadowed by The Godfather news were two other gold announcements. The first was for Ubisoft's Blazing Angels: Squadrons of WWII, which is rated T for Teen. As demonstrated in a recent hands-on preview, the combat flight sim allows would-be flyboys to engage in single-player and 16-person multiplayer dogfights above the European theater of World War II. The game will feature 38 realistic aircraft, including the American Mustang, the British Spitfire, the German Messerschmitt, and the Japanese Zero. Next Thursday, March 23, the PC and Xbox versions of the game will go on sale for $39.99 for the Xbox and PC, and $59.99 for the Xbox 360.

If you prefer the high seas to the wild-blue yonder, Koei announced today its PS2 naval sim, Warship Gunner 2, has also gone gold. The sequel to 2003's Naval Ops: Warship Gunner, Warship Gunner 2 features 100 missions and a variety of ships, including submarines, battleships, and destroyers. Gamers will be able to invest in various technologies, improving their chances for survival on the high seas. It is rated T for Teen and will retail for $39.99.

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