This week sees gaming's first Western since last year's epic Red Dead Redemption. Can Call of Juarez: The Cartel compete? The third entry in Techland's cowboy series is taking a very bold tack - uprooting the shooting from the genre's classic timeframe and dumping gamers in the modern day.
Remember the bit in Honey I Shrunk the Kids where the miniaturised children find the huge ant? Well, imagine a whole army of giant pincer-gnashing Antie lookalikes who are pure evil, and that's Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon.
With summer apparently in full swing, Microsoft has again sounded the call for gamers to begin their annual pilgrimage to Xbox Live. Xbox owners who make the trek to their console's Marketplace are rewarded with a weekly oasis of gaming gems to quench their thirst from the retail release summer drought.
Yes, it's the Summer of Arcade. While our eyes are greedily set on next week's beautiful god game From Dust, this Wednesday's RPG offering Bastion could yet prove a compelling reason to top up your Microsoft Points sooner.
PlayStation 3 gamers get to catch up on one of XBLA's finest, the critically-acclaimed darkly atmospheric Limbo. It was originally released during the Xbox Summer of Arcade last year.
Sony fans can also now nab some of their console's best franchises as double features. The Uncharted and Resistance Double Packs collect the first two outings in each trilogy, ahead of Uncharted 3 and Resistance 3 later this year. The Ratchet & Clank Double Pack meanwhile collates the first and third titles in the series' recent Future trilogy, omitting shorter midquel Quest for Booty.
Still seen nothing you want? We'd be remiss not to mention Coronation Street: The Mystery of the Missing Hotpot Recipe, which, according to the game's box, is "a fun and iconic hidden-object adventure game!" A Eurogamer review has yet to be scheduled.
This Week in Shops!
Call of Juarez: The Cartel
- Developer: Techland
- Publisher: Ubisoft
- Formats: PS3, Xbox 360
What is it? Developer Techland has set itself the unenviable task of convincing gamers what the cowboy genre needed next was an update to the modern day. In the middle of Mexico's very real and very bloody drug gang problem. What does Eurogamer think? Eurogamer's review will be published Tuesday, 5pm.
Earth Defence Force: Insect Armageddon
- Developer: Vicious Cycle Software
- Publisher: D3 Publisher
- Formats: PS3, Xbox 360
What is it? An ugly bug ball where you shoot giant insects with futuristic weapons. In third-person, with jet packs. What does Eurogamer think? The ants marched home with an 8/10 in Eurogamer's Earth Defence Force: Insect Armageddon review. It's a "discount blaster to dive into for a few hours every few months, and to have nearby whenever you get bored of more complex entertainments," said Christian Donlan.
- Developer: Supergiant Games
- Publisher: Warner Bros.
- Formats: XBLA, (PC release later in the year).
What is it? A grandiose RPG set in a charming isometric world, which literally unfolds before you as you explore. Oh, and your actions and choices are narrated as you make them by a wise old man. What does Eurogamer think? Eurogamer's verdict is coming Tuesday, 3pm.
- Cars 2 (DS, PS3, Wii, Xbox 360)
- Ratchet & Clank Double Pack (PS3)
- Uncharted Double Pack (PS3)
- Resistance Double Pack (PS3)
- Coronation Street: The Mystery of the Missing Hotpot Recipe (PC)
- Limbo (PSN)
- 3D Classics Xevious (3DS)
- Game & Watch Gallery (3DS)
Each week one of the team will step up to predict the UK all-formats chart. The following predicts the outcome for the week beginning Friday 22nd July (to be reported on Monday 25th July).
John Bedford, Content Editor, Eurogamer.net
"With the film finale now out on general release, I bet a Harry Potter-shaped hole in everyone's lives will drag the games-buying public into their local retailer for one last fix. This of course goes contrary to all current evidence that suggests Zumba Fitness will somehow, and inexplicably, sell as many copies as Battlefield 3 and the next Call of Duty combined. More hope than prediction for Zumba's number two spot, then.
"Dirt 3's traction (sorry) should see it sticking around in the top five, but I see it drifting into fourth place. Transformers will likewise take a minor tumble into third, and there'll be a solid fifth place showing for Call of Juarez: The Cartel. Yep, it's summer. "
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part Two
- Zumba Fitness
- Transformers: Dark of the Moon
- Dirt 3
- Call of Juarez: The Cartel
Last week, Eurogamer's News Editor Wesley Yin-Poole attempted to predict the future. Our fancy table below shows you how many he got right.
|Position||The Truth||The Prediction||Result|
|1||Zumba Fitness||Zumba Fitness||YES!|
|2||Transformers: Dark of the Moon||Harry Potter Deathly Hallows Pt. Two||NO!|
|3||DiRT 3||DiRT 3||YES!|
|4||Call of Duty: Black Ops||Transformers: Dark of the Moon||NO!|
|5||Lego Pirates of the Caribbean||Lego Pirates of the Caribbean||NOT BAD!|
Your Chart Predictions
Last week you were torn as to whether J. K. Rowling's scarred protagonist could conquer the charts - with a majority of just 29 per cent hoping he would defeat whatever Horcrux is keeping Zumba Fitness at number one. You were wrong! But only just. 22 per cent suggested a placing somewhere in the latter half of the top ten, which is exactly where he showed up.
This week it's the turn of Call of Juarez. Practice saying it in your finest Mexican accent, then mark your predicted chart placement in the poll below.