New PAL Releases - 19th to 25th Jan

War, cars, war, war, music, darts.

2008. He's the bad boy of gaming, with attitude, baditude, then dum dum something about latitude, to win his gratitude. That's from the Simpsons, but I can't remember it all. All I can recall is that the jockeys were leprechauns and Homer said "possessions are fleeting".

Anyway, Advance Wars: Dark Conflict is the grumpiest Advance Wars game ever. In it, everything is brown or grey, it's the end of the world, and flowers kill children from the inside out. It's still very good (my favourite new unit is, fittingly, the motorbike), but we wish it felt better about it.

Not a problem that Burnout Paradise suffers from, of course, as the developer explained on its website at Christmas that the Internet is full of liars and cads and Burnout Paradise is the best demo of all 2007 and the best Burnout ever and SHUT UP and I KNOW YOU ARE BUT WHAT AM I.

It too is very good, according to Kristan, who has followed the series so closely that it's amazing they haven't swapped paint. Apparently not being able to pull up a menu to restart the event you just did isn't actually as annoying as it sounds.

Of the other games out tomorrow in PAL territories, probably the most interesting is Universe At War: Earth Assault. It just so happens that Rob Fahey has been sending me emails about that ahead of his no-doubt exciting review, from which I will now run exclusive extracts:

  • "inching across the map"
  • "the vaguely mystical Masari"
  • "badly wrong enough to upset"
  • "races (first the Novus, then the Hierarchy and later the Masari) as"
  • "decision to use the godawful"
  • and "however, will find this game"

Moving on, Xbox 360 Guitar Hero III fans who never bought Guitar Hero II can now do that without having to buy another guitar at the same time, which is nice, and Nintendo Wii fans who never check to see whether a game is any good before buying it can now do that with Donkey Kong: Jet Race, which is known as Donkey Kong: Barrel Blast to its friends, or rather enemies, in the USA.

Join us again next week for a less exciting line-up of new games, including - if we're lucky - a new NFL game and possibly one about knights.

This week:

  • Advance Wars: Dark Conflict (DS)
  • Burnout: Paradise (PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Donkey Kong: Jet Race (Wii)
  • Guitar Hero II solus (Xbox 360)
  • Phantasy Star Universe: Ambition of Illuminus (PS2, PC)
  • PDC World Championship Darts (PS2, PC)
  • Sea Monsters (Wii)
  • Universe At War: Earth Assault (PC)

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