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Shippin' Out March 13-19: Homefront, Shogun 2, Yakuza 4, Halo: Reach DLC

New release slate led by THQ's war-at-home shooter, Sega's period strategy game, Japanese mob title, and the Defiant Map Pack for Bungie's shooter; Top Spin 4, MotoGP 10/11, Gods Eater Burst, and Okamiden also out.


It's a bountiful spring break at retail, as several high-profile new releases are out this week, including THQ's war-at-home shooter, Sega's open-world crime game, and 2K's latest tennis title.

Leading the pack this week is THQ's Homefront for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC. Due out on Tuesday, the game was developed by Kaos Studios and is a story-driven shooter set after North Korea invades and occupies the United States. The single-player component sees the player as a member of the American resistance fighting the Korean People's Army in an attempt to regain control of the ruined nation. The multiplayer modes are set earlier, letting players engage in military scenarios from the invasion itself.

The war comes home this week in Homefront.
The war comes home this week in Homefront.

Also due out this week is Sega's Shogun 2: Total War for the PC. Developed by Creative Assembly, Total War returns to 16th-century Japan during the tumultuous Sengoku period. Players assume the role of a daimyo, or clan leader, who must engage with fellow warlords, be it through conflict or diplomacy, to reunite the sundered island nation.

Gamers looking to get their hands dirty can pick up Yakuza 4 for the PlayStation 3 this week. In this latest franchise installment, main character Kazuma Kiryu is joined by equally pugnacious combatants Masayoshi Tanimura, Shun Akiyama, and Taiga Saejima. Each of the four playable main characters has a distinct narrative, with each backstory carrying a connection to the game's Tojo clan.

Those looking to extend their copy of Halo: Reach can download the $10 Defiant Map Pack this week from Xbox Live. The latest Halo add-on updates the Firefight and online multiplayer areas of Reach with three new battlegrounds: Condemned, Highlands, and Unearthed. Condemned is a space-station level supporting six to 12 players, while Highlands takes the fight outside for eight- to 16-player battles in the wilderness of Reach. Finally, Unearthed is set in one of the planet's mining operations and supports up to four players in the Firefight mode.

Sports game fans this week can grab 2K Czech's Top Spin 4 for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Nintendo Wii. Top Spin 4 features the likenesses of 25 tennis stars, including Andre Agassi, Andy Roddick, Rafael Nadal, Ana Ivanovic, Pete Sampras, James Black, Jelena Jankovic, Serena Williams, Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, and Caroline Wozniacki.

Additionally, players' real-world on-court clothing, as well as their unique movements--which include celebration maneuvers--will be reflected via animations. Further, the game will sport many of the most popular venues in tennis, including Wimbledon, Roland Garros, Arthur Ashe Stadium, and others.

Tennis fans can hit the virtual court this week in Top Spin 4.
Tennis fans can hit the virtual court this week in Top Spin 4.

Racing game fans can pick up MotoGP 10/11 this week for the PlayStation 3. For this year's MotoGP installment, developer Monumental has implemented a new handling system, as well as changed the game's physics system. The studio has also added a new player-assist feature, which can be customized to allow for a more simulation or arcadelike riding experience. Capcom emphasized that the player-assist function can be tweaked in a variety of ways or completely shut off to provide the most realistic riding.

Many of the same modes from MotoGP 09/10 are being carried over to the new game, but Monumental is implementing a handful of new features. Namely, Career mode now features co-op play, allowing for local split-screen. The game also features Championship and Time Trial modes, as well as a suite of online racing features that accommodate up to 20, and Capcom will begin providing current updates for MotoGP 10/11 shortly after the championship season kicks off. The Xbox 360 version of the game has not been dated yet by Capcom.

On-the-go gamers can grab the four-player monster-hunting sequel Gods Eater Burst this week for the PSP. The game is the second installment in Namco Bandai's multiplayer action series for Sony's portable, and it debuted in October in Japan to sales of 263,150. The original God Eater was never released in North America.

Another new portable game out this week is Capcom's Okamiden for the DS. The game picks up nine months after the events of the original, which saw release on the PlayStation 2 in 2006. (It was also rereleased on the Wii in 2008.) The handheld game follows a new protagonist, Chibiterasu, who is the child of the original's sun-god-turned-white-wolf Amaterasu.

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.

Maximum Racing: Drag & Stock Racer--Wii--Maximum Family Games
Maximum Racing: GP Classics Racing--Wii--Maximum Family Games

Ar tonelico Qoga: Knell of Ar Ciel--PS3--NIS America
Dance on Broadway--PS3--Ubisoft
Fit in Six--Wii, PS3--Ubisoft
Gods Eater Burst--PSP--D3Publisher
Halo: Reach Defiant Map Pack--X360--Microsoft Game Studios
Homefront--PC, PS3, X360--THQ
Jikandia: The Timeless Land--PSP--Aksys Games
MotoGP 10/11--PS3--Capcom
Sega Genesis Classic Collection Gold Edition--PC--Sega
Top Spin 4--X360, PS3, Wii--2K Sports
Trackmania: Build to Race--Wii--Dreamcatcher
Warrior: Legends of Troy--PS3, X360--Koei
Yakuza 4--PS3--Sega

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