Shippin' Out Feb. 27-Mar. 5: Fight Night Champion, Black Ops PS3 DLC

New release slate highlighted by first M-rated franchise entry and First Strike add-on content for Sony's console; Beyond Good & Evil HD, Rift, Warhammer 40K: Dawn of War II - Retribution also out.


The splendid shooter Killzone 3 and the foul-mouthed Bulletstorm led all releases last week, but this week's focus shifts to hand-to-hand fighting, Call of Duty multiplayer, and a revival of Beyond Good & Evil.

Leading the pack this week is EA Sports' Fight Night Champion for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Champion is the first Fight Night game to be rated M for Mature. The game is being billed as one that is "gritty" and "dark," with animations and player damage that "truly conveys the brutality of the sport of boxing."

This is the closest any gamer will come to bloodying the non-virtual Manny Pacquiao.
This is the closest any gamer will come to bloodying the non-virtual Manny Pacquiao.

EA is promising a refined physics-based animation system and a new "Full Spectrum Punch Control" scheme. The title will focus on a single-player mode intended to re-create the dramatic and emotional aspects of the sport.

PlayStation 3 gamers looking to add to their copy of Call of Duty: Black Ops can pick up the $15 First Strike downloadable content this week via the PlayStation Network. As for the content, the map pack includes four new multiplayer environments ranging in locale from the Berlin Wall in Germany to a North American hockey rink. The add-on also bundles one environment for the game's zombie mode dubbed Ascension.

While Beyond Good & Evil 2 is still far off, fans of the series can pick up an updated version of the well-received original this week on Xbox Live. Beyond Good & Evil HD will feature 1080p graphics, including enhanced character models and upgraded textures, and Ubisoft has also remastered the game's musical score.

Also out this week is Trion Worlds' massively multiplayer online game Rift for the PC. As its title might suggest, the game's premise is of "rifts" in space time that are playing havoc with the land of Telara and threatening to tear the fabric of the universe. The world will be highly malleable, as these rifts can be triggered by players or the development team, and they can also occur spontaneously. Their arrival will apparently alter the landscape, as well as open up new areas for exploration.

Those who would rather add to an existing game than pick up a new one can grab Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II - Retribution for the PC. Retribution follows on from the events that transpired in Dawn of War II's first expansion, Chaos Rising. Set 10 years later, the game sees the Imperium reeling after an apparent betrayal by Gabriel Angelos' Space Marines. Gamers will be able to assume command of their chosen faction to experience the events of the game as they play out.

Gamers looking for something a little lighter this week can pick up Rango The Video Game. It will be released the Tuesday before the Johnny Depp-voiced animated Western is released in theaters on Friday, March 4. Like its film inspiration, the action adventure game will follow the travails of its titular out-of-his-element lizard. The game will be set in the Wild West town of Dirt, and gamers will find themselves meeting quirky characters, as well as engaging in shoot-outs and other old-timey activities.

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.

Fate of the World--PC--Red Redemption
Martial Empires: The Catastrophe of Babylon--PC--gamigo

Chuck E. Cheese's Sports Games--Wii--UFO Interactive
Fight Night Champion--PS3, X360--EA Sports
Rango: The Video Game--PS3, X360, Wii, DS--Paramount Digital Entertainment
Rift--PC--Trion Worlds
Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II - Retribution--PC--THQ

Beyond Good & Evil HD--X360--Ubisoft
Perfect World International: Genesis--PC--Perfect World Entertainment

Call of Duty: Black Ops: First Strike--PS3--Activision

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