Mario & Sonic at the Olympics
According to some bint, the first Mario & Sonic was "the best collection of mini-games for Nintendo's console since Wii Sports". She should bloody know.
Now the DS version is on the way and promising to be much less tiring You'll use the stylus to jump, swim, run, shoot and pedal your way through 16 Olympic challenges including two exclusive to the handheld game - 10m platform diving and cycling. There are also five exclusive Dream events: canoeing, boxing, basketball, long jump and skeet shooting. Once again you can play as a range of characters from the worlds of Mario and Sonic, each with unique abilities and an anatomically incorrect number of fingers.
You can compete against up to four other players wirelessly, with both single- and multi-card options available. Plus you can upload your scores via Wi-Fi Connect to see how you rank against other players around the world.
Mario and Sonic at the Olympics DS is out on 8th February, and a review will be appearing on Eurogamer shortly. Bet you can't guess who's writing it.
Soul Calibur IV and Legends
On to fighting games now, yes all right is it a sport isn't a sport haven't you got work to do.
Soul Calibur IV, in development for Xbox 360 and PS3, is promising to "revolutionise the fighting game genre" with its fancy new battle system. Other items on the checklist include enhanced AI, interactive environments, HD shizzle, extra customisation options and an online mode.
Most excitingly, Darth Vader (or "the Sith Lord Darth Vader" as he's described in the press release, in case you get confused with the Popular Television Chef Darth Vader) will appear in the PS3 version. Yoda in the Xbox 360 game will be.
Soul Calibur Legends is exclusive to Wii and will make use of the remote and nunchuk. It's described as a third-person action adventure and follows Siegfried and other familiar characters on a familiar quest for ultimate power. There are more than 10 stages in Quest mode, and you can compete or play co-operatively with a friend.
Soul Calibur IV and Soul Calibur Legends are out this summer.
Fighting chance: This video of a man racing a giraffe and a zebra has nothing to do with Soul Calibur IV or Soul Calibur Legends.
Super Smash Bros. Brawl
This Wii exclusive stars all manner of videogame heros, from Mario and Pikachu to Solid Snake, Samus and Link. We're also promised lots of music from various Nintendo games, plus special items such as Pok Balls and Assist Trophies.
Solo mode is a side-scrolling beat-em-up adventure. Back in May 2006 Shigeru Miyamoto told us, "This time we're getting a lot of time to focus on Smash Bros., plenty of time to develop it, so people can expect a very robust single-player game."
Multiplayer lets you pick characters, venues and rules. For the first time in the series' history you'll be able to battle it out online against up to four players.
According to series creator Masahiro Sakurai, there won't be too much remote waggling to be done. "We've found that trying to implement too much of the pointing device or the motion sensing stuff gets a little bit in the way of the gameplay," he explained. "So rather than just trying to implement too much of that in the game we're trying to keep the controls simple."
Super Smash Bros. Brawl has just been delayed in Japan by a week and the US by a month, so goodness knows when it'll make it to Europe - but it's still down for this year.
Super Smashing Great: For loads more game info and plenty of nice videos, visit the SSBB gamepage.
That concludes our round-up of 2008's sports games - the ones that have been announced, anyway. Chances are there will be a new FIFA and Tiger Woods, not to mention UEFA Euro. And if we're very lucky Tekken 6 might make an appearance. Next up: RPGs.