Weekly Game Announcement Roundup

Spielberg, FaceBreaker, Euro 2008.

Last night something attacked New York and it was tense. Then England played football and it was bad but promising. Then meatballs helped turn around the fortunes of a struggling New Jersey restaurant and there was swearing. Quite a lot, really. But what does our games industry have to say about that?

Well, EA thought it should do something big and bold and dramatic by getting Steven Spielberg to help it make some games, and the lid was finally lifted on his "PQRS" project as a puzzle game for Wii called Boom Blox. Sadly the fruits of his epic cinematic vision seem to have been ignored; instead he has opted to make a mini-game compilation he could play with his kids.

Still, EA confirmed Rock Band was coming to Wii sometime in or after April, and NanaOn-Sha of PaRappa the Rapper fame unveiled its marching band music game for Wii that lets stomp around the streets and wake people up.

Not content with losing a headline, EA smashed fresh cartoon-inspired boxing game FaceBreaker into our chops. Looks very nice too, like a cross between Ready 2 Rumble Boxing and Team Fortress 2. And although it has realistic physics, it should be more Itchy and Scratchy than Raging Bull, which reminds us to point you towards Martin Scorsese's Sesame Streets.

Inevitably EA finally whipped the wrappers off its Euro 2008 football outing too, currently heading for shops in April. All the expected licenses will be in there as you might expect, as will fresh ideas Captain Your Country and Battle of the Nations.

All Sony had to say to that was yes we are working on flOw for PSP, so you can swim around eating other organisms in an effort to get big. We rather liked the PSN original too, if you remember.

However, if space is more your thing, and made-up surveys suggest it is, then you should be excited about the finale to the X series, X3: Terran Conflict. It will put the storyline to bed and take place in Earth's solar system, answering questions like what is our world up to in the future and why is aliens?

You might also ask what Shadow Harvest is? Well, you, it's a fresh tactical action game from German developer Black Lion Studios featuring two main characters to swap between, one likes shooting and one likes creeping around like me on a dark night. Should lend diversity to the open level design, apparently. Open like the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. prequel to which Deep Silver has just picked up retail publishing rights.

Even more love for the PC came by way of new investigation types for the desktop version of Assassin's Creed. You see, you have to build up usually three investigations before you take down your overall target, and currently these are restricted to eavesdropping, pick pocketing, doing some dirty work for an informant or interrogating someone. So this should lend some much needed variety.

EA hugged you PC lovers by revealing it would split the contents of the Orange Box for you and sell the separate parts in shops. And Valve told us there would definitely be more Portal in the future, as well as reinforcing its commitment to value - a la The Orange Box.

But, alas, not all was rosy, as Microsoft said no you will not be able to play Halo Wars on PC. Still, American McGee said he was working on a "world-class" game based on a twisted tale, which will hopefully be more Alice than Bad Day L.A, and Brash Entertainment said it was making a Space Chimps title to go alongside the film

Gearbox big-shot Randy Pitchford was a little bit excited this week as well, after revealing he was personally directing a new project it was not possible to "oversell". He needs help. To build it. Silly. Bungie also spilled a little information on its new post-Microsoft project, which will apparently be completely different to anything it has done before. But that was all it said, for now.

Sid Meier was another industry favourite toying with big pictures, revealing he was working on ideas for an MMO. One hopefully more successful than Myst Online, which is being canned by distributor GameTap in the near future.

All that Gears of War 2 talk was rubbish too, according to Mark Rein, who should join the Women's Murder Club. Hold your horses, it's just an adventure title by author James Patterson for casual Wii gamers. But he is an arrogant type and said some provocative things about you lot.

Last but not least is news that Konami has bundled MGS, MGS2 and MGS3 together in Metal Gear Solid: The Essential Collection. It is unconfirmed for Europe so far, but should be out before Guns of the Patriots in the US.

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About the author

Robert Purchese

Robert Purchese

Senior Staff Writer  |  Clert

Bertie is senior staff writer and Eurogamer's Poland-and-dragons correspondent. He's part of the furniture here, a friendly chair, and reports on all kinds of things, the stranger the better.

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