Shippin' Out July 21-25: FFIV DS, 1942: Joint Strike

Square Enix's handheld RPG and Capcom's remake of its classic shooter top a light post-E3 release week, along with SIREN: Blood Curse and a trio of Wii VC games.

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With the entire game industry nursing a post-E3 2008 hangover, most publishers wisely chose to steer clear of launching any major products this week. The main exception to this traditional rule is Final Fantasy IV for the Nintendo DS, an "enhanced remake" of the 1991 SNES game, which was later ported to the original PlayStation and the Game Boy Advance. (It was initially released under the title Final Fantasy II in North America.) With the help of Tokyo-based developer Matrix Software, which also remade Final Fantasy III for the DS in 2006, the game includes all-new graphics, cinematic camera style, and voice acting. GameSpot's glowing review also lauds Final Fantasy IV for its new augment system, which lets players customize their parties.

The week's other high-profile game is 1942: Joint Strike, a remake of Capcom's 1985 classic top-down, World War II-themed arcade shooter. Developed by Backbone Entertainment (Death Jr., Sonic Rivals), the game adds news levels, weapons, and power-ups, as well as overhauled graphics. Priced at $9.99, the game will be released as a digital download on Wednesday on Xbox Live Arcade and Thursday on the PlayStation Network. PlayStation 3 owners will also be treated to another digitally delivered game, the horror action adventure SIREN: Blood Curse.

In other downloadable content news, the Nintendo Wii gets three new downloadable games this week. Besides the WiiWare offering Oxygen Games' Pirates: The Key of Dreams ($10), which casts players as a cartoonish buccaneer, the platform's Virtual Console will be getting two Sega Genesis classics: 1993's Super Fantasy Zone and 1992's Gley Lancer.

This week's new releases are listed below (list taken from retailer information--actual dates may vary).

JULY 21, 2008
Baseball Mogul 2009 (PC)
City Life 2008 Edition (PC)
Code Lyoko: Quest for Infinity (PSP)
Final Fantasy IV (DS)
Gley Lancer (WII)
Hunting Unlimited 2009 (PC)
Pirates: The Key of Dreams (WII VC)
Super Fantasy Zone (WII)

JULY 22, 2008
Izuna 2: The Unemployed Ninja Returns (DS)
The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor (WII, DS, PS2)
New International Track & Field (DS)
Order Up! (WII)
Ubersoldier 2: The End of Hitler (PC)

JULY 23, 2008
1942: Joint Strike (XBLA)
Go! Go! Break Steady (X360)
Nancy Drew: The Mystery of the Clue Bender Society (DS)

JULY 24, 2008
1701 A.D. Gold Edition (PC)
1942: Joint Strike (PS3)
SIREN: Blood Curse (PS3)

JULY 25, 2008 No releases scheduled.

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