Those who are close to the entertainment industry know that the week doesn't start with the first work day on Monday or the first calendar day on Sunday. The week starts when new DVDs and Video Games are released on Tuesday.
This is exactly why each and every Tuesday, this is where you should be. Each week I'll pick out some of the best (and worst) games being released this week, so you always have a finger on the pulse of what's new and hot in the gaming industry.
Note: To make the "Top" five list, games don't necessarily need to be a great game. Sometimes serious skills in development take precedence, sometimes hilarity ensues.
1) Mass Effect 2 - Xbox 360, PC (Jan. 26, 2010) ESRB: Mature
If you haven't played the first Mass Effect, you might want to before delving into the next installment from Commander Shepard and the crew of the Normandy. The first game serves as a great introduction to the world BioWare has created, and while you very well may be able to pick up ME2 and understand what's going on right away, it's always best to start at the beginning, right?
It's tough to tell whether ME2 will gain enough of an audience from those who have never played the first one, but generally speaking, RPGs have some way of getting players new to their universe acquainted. The Mass Effect series gains its individuality from having a dialogue structure that works much like an interactive movie, allowing the gamer to decide how and when they want Shepard to respond to the other characters. The sequel boasts new characters, polished graphics and another immersing story.
Either way, if the amount of money Electronic Arts is putting into advertising and hyping the game is any indication of the quality of the game, Mass Effect 2 will likely be the RPG to own for its stunning visuals and expansive dialogue and plot lines.
2) MAG - PS3 (Jan. 26, 2010) ESRB: Teen
Vast warzones with up to 256 separate players all playing at once? Sounds like a might high bar to set, but that's what MAG offers. MAG is even short for "Massive Action Game" and it is the first game (besides MMOs) to boast more than a hundred players in one game session. This will be, in some ways, a test for the gaming industry, as it will be seen if many of the past problems with massively multiplayer shooters have been fixed. Past attempts have had to deal with slowed connections and inaccurate gameplay, but maybe MAG can reload this concept.
3) No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle - Wii (Jan. 26, 2010) ESRB: Mature
I've always been a firm believer that the Wii remote is best utilized during sword play. The sequel to the cell-shading, slice spree has promising gameplay that looks polished and graphic. Still, video games that require motion are far from the average gamers' "cup of tea."
4) Uno - Wii (Jan. 25, 2010) ESRB: Everyone
The early bird gets the worm, and for the classic card game "Uno", Xbox was the bird. Nintendo offers Uno via download as "WiiWare", but the appeal may not be there well over two years after Xbox released their version of Uno via the Xbox Live Arcade.
5) Tatsunoko v. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars - Wii (Jan. 26, 2010) ESRB: Teen
Another 2D fighting game with popular Capcom characters like Ryu. Anime fans will probably be more familiar with some of the characters compiled in this game, but fans of fast-paced fighting games should be eager for this game's release. How will combos work with a Wii remote, though?