Microsoft has announced a number of first party games to be released in the tail end of this year, some we knew about, some we did not. At the top of the list of games we did know about (and at the top of our Christmas list) is Bioware's Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic, a character-driven RPG set 4,000 years prior to the Star Wars films. A long, long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away. This is still pencilled in for late 2002, but European gamers will likely have to wait a few more months to get their hands on it. Other previously heard of games in Microsoft's line-up include yank-fodder NFL Fever 2003, the long-awaited Shenmue II (but not the long-awaited Shenmue III), Panzer Dragoon ORTA, Unreal Championship and Peter Molyneux's Project Ego. Further to these, Microsoft is promising a raft of other titles. Brute Force is a squad-based shooter which requires real battle strategy, and can also be played solo with the option of dynamic introduction of supporting troopers controlled by second, third or fourth players. And presumably more online. It sounds good, but you would be somewhat right in saying that this is almost exactly what we were promised with Halo. Elsewhere the company has highlighted Tecmo's Ninja Gaiden (which sounds like a modern day Tenchu), Blinx: The Time Sweeper (a Japanese game about a cat on a mission to fix glitches in the space-time continuum, playing with the flow of time and cooperating with others to mend the time-line), Psychonauts (a game about paranormal superheroes) and Tork (a game about a caveboy trying to save his father). Remember that these are merely the games promised for the festive period. Whether they will all hit their targeted release dates remains to be seen, but it's fair to say that the Xbox has a slew of interesting games on the horizon, and it will be fun to see them in action at E3. Related Feature - The Empire Strikes Back
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