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JANUARY 2006 NEWS

January 31, 2006

    Games News
    Ubisoft have confirmed that Dragon Quest: The Journey of the Cursed King will indeed be released in Australia with an unspecified April date currently being looked at. More news when we get it.

    PS2 Previews
    Project Zero 3: The Tormented has just been confirmed for release in Australia. It's a good thing too as the two previous games are among the scariest video games ever released - but tremendous fun as well. This third game is out soon at a great price. Here's a peek with some of the latest, haunting, images.

January 29, 2006

    PS2 Previews
    Commandos Strike Force is another of Eidos' (now SCi's) big titles for 2006 is this game. The series sees its biggest shift ever from isometric to first person action, but it still looks very impressive. We have the latest screens and info inside.

January 28, 2006

    Games News
    According to a listing on Gameswarehouse.com.au Dragon Quest: The Journey of the Cursed King will be released in Australia through Ubisoft. Although there is no date yet and it isn't yet available to pre-order you can check out the listing right here.

    Konami's Takahiro Sakiyama has confirmed that there will be no more current generation Suikoden titles after Suikoden V. It's not bad news though as the series will be heading to next generation systems.

    Because we love Sony, and don't really like Microsoft (just as Microsoft doesn't like Australian's) we though we'd throw a bit more salt into their wound after announcing a delay for the XBox 360 here by giving you the Japanese sales figures. From January 16-22 the company sold an impressive (if you're a Sony supporter) 3,616 XBox 360's units bringing its 2006 total to 17,200 units! Thats about 129,000 units less then the PS2 in the first 22 days of the year, or 211,000 less systems then the PSP. Why Microsoft are you supporting a territory that just doesn't about the XSlab and screwing the country that gives you the biggest market share? Oh well Sony execs will be laughing at the moment! Oh yar, Microsoft's Home and Entertainment division lost $US293 million in the quarter ending December 31st. Ouch!

    PS2 Previews
    Hitman: Blood Money is a game we previewed some time ago, but with its delay from 2005 until June 2006 (or perhaps later) we thought it was time to have a look at some new screens just released and add some more details to the preview. This game from Io Interactive (who developed the previous titles) is looking slicker by the day.

January 26, 2006

    Games News
    Ubisoft has confirmed that Splinter Cell Double Agent has been delayed from March 2006, until September 2006 on all systems. The company is still not confirming a Playstation 3 version, but I wouldn't mind placing some money on the game coming out as a PS3 launch title in America (America is rumoured to be getting the PS3 around September!).

    Electronic Arts has confirmed that The Godfather will be released in America and Europe on March 21st, a week later then expected. The PSP version, as we mentioned a couple of days ago, has been pushed into late 2006.

    Sony has announced that they have purchased Zipper Interactive for an undisclosed price. The company is behind the hit SOCOM series which has shifted 7 million units on PS2 and PSP around the globe and is the PS2's strongest online title.

    Well it seems that Microsoft still hate Australia. Despite the fact that they can't even shift a handful of XBox 1.5's in Japan the company has seen fit to delay the Australian launch due to "supply shortages". Perhaps it's more due to the fact that they can't organize themselves. Anyway the system won't be out on March 2nd as originally announced, but will now be released on March 23rd.

January 24, 2006

    Games News
    Sega has confirmed that Phantasy Star Universe has been delayed yet again in America, this time until an unspecified fall (Australian Spring) date.

    Sega has announced Monkey Ball Adventures for PSP and PS2. The game is currently in development at Traveller's Tales and as yet there's not a release date, but expect it sometime in 2006.

    Electronic Arts has confirmed that next generation versions of The Godfather as well as the PSP game has been delayed until later in the year.

    PS2 Previews
    Ice Age 2: The Meltdown is, as almost every one of you would be aware, the video game tie-in of the upcoming movie. In this preview we have some of the first screens and info and you might be impressed at how nice this game is already looking.

January 22, 2006

    Games News
    Those of you waiting for Majesco's Psychonauts will be pleased to hear that the game will hit the shelves in Australia on February 9th. We've got the game here and can say it really does live up to the hype. Expect a review closer to launch.

    PS2 Previews
    Sega Classics Collection was released as individual games in Japan, and looks like it will go without a release in America. PAL gamers will be pleased to hear about this bundle out soon with classic games like Golden Axe, Virtua Racing and Fantasy Zone to name a few. Here's a last preview before a release in a couple of weeks.

January 20, 2006

    Games News
    We love out movies, and when it's a movie based on a game we're there. We know we're almost certain to be disappointed on some level, but in recent years there has been some great movies such as Resident Evil. Now Hollywood looks to be taking it up a few more notches with Silent Hill. This trailer is damn hot so check it out right here. Just have a change of pants handy.

    Sony Japan has announced the first batch of Playstation 3 titles for release in that territory. While there are no screens or detail the games include:

    • The Eye of Judgement
    • Genji 2 (Action)
    • Angel Rings (RPG)
    • Monster Carnival (Action RPG)
    • Minna no Golf 5 (Sports, known as Everybody's Golf in the West)
    • Gran Turismo Series (Racing)

    Sucker Punch, the developers of the massively underrated Sly titles, has confirmed they are working on a next generation game which includes online features.

    Capcom's Hiroyuki Kobayashi has mentioned that Devil May Cry 4 may not be a PS3 exclusive with XBox 360 and Revolution ports of the game also possible.

    Well we only previewed it the other day but Red Ant has delayed the release of State of Emergency 2 from March 10th until an undisclosed April release.

January 18, 2006

    PS2 Previews
    State of Emergency 2 It's been four years since the original game hit the shelves, and this sequel isn't just a rehash, but a new title with many improvements. We take a peek and give you the latest screens and info on this interesting looking game.

January 16, 2006

    Games News
    Recently we told you that Final Fantasy: Advent Children had been delayed from February until an unspecified date in 2006. While Sony Pictures still can't confirm the date some eagle eyed readers have noticed that EzyDVD now have the DVD version listed for May 3rd, and while the PSP version isn't listed we expect it to be around the same date.

    PSP Reviews
    Frantix was another of Ubisoft's pre-Christmas $49.95 releases. This puzzle game, developed by KillerGame sees you running through a series of mazes collecting crystals, moving objects and avoiding enemies. It looks and sounds pretty good, but does it actually play well? Here's our full verdict.

January 15, 2006

    Games News
    According to reports the latest issue Game Informer will reveal that Electronic Arts' Medal of Honor: Airborne will be released on next generation consoles including PS3. The game was first rumoured quite some time ago and apparently will include a 4-player co-op mode and parachute drop sections. Expect to hear much more of this game in the lead-up to E3 where we expect it to make a big impression.

    Ubisoft have announced that Rainbow Six: Critical Hour is in development for the PS2. The game will include a 7 mission single-player campaign and 18 multiplayer levels. The game will be released in America this March, and we assume PAL territories soon after.

    PSP Previews
    Me and My Katamari isn't the same game that we previewed a couple of weeks ago. No, this is a PSP game in the series, a series which PAL gamers are yet to fall in love with. This PSP version includes a new setting, new levels and, most excitingly, 4-player co-op gameplay. Here's a preview with the latest screens.

January 14, 2006

    Games News
    Sony Europe has announced that Talkman for the PSP will be coming to Europe and Australia. This isn't a game as such but rather a program which translates languages. Talkman includes six languages (French, English, German, Spanish, Italian and Japanese) with more than 3000 crucial phrases at your fingertips. The program will ship with a microphone attachment. The program will also include two mini-games including a Pronunciation Game and a Listening game. Expect a release in May at an unannounced price.

    Square-Enix has confirmed that they will be releasing Dragon Quest VII: The Journey of the Cursed King in Europe this April. Not only will we be receiving the game, but it will include several enhancements including British voiceovers, new battle options and small graphical enhancements.

    Tecmo has confirmed in Famitsu PS2 that they will be announcing their Playstation 3 lineup soon, but not until the launch is a little closer.

    Electronic Arts has announced that Def Jam Fight For NY: The Takeover is in development for the PSP. The game is actually a prequel to the PS2 game Def Jam Vendetta and will be released in 2006.

    Square-Enix has announced that they will ship 2 million units of Final Fantasy XII to Japanese retailers on launch day, March 16th. Still no word on a PAL release yet.

    Fox has announced that the movie Ice Age will be released on PSP UMD on March 29th in Australia, no doubt to cash in on the sequel which is due to hit cinemas around the same time.

    Sticking with PSP UMD movies for a moment Fox has also announced that Speed, Elektra and Behind Enemy Lines will all be released on February 15th.

January 12, 2006

    Games News
    In a surprise move Ubisoft has announced that they are developing a game based on the upcoming Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles CG film from Imagi Animation Studios. The game will be coming to several unannounced platforms in 2007 to coincide with the movie which is based on the comic books rather then the cartoon series. The announcement leaves Konami's current license status somewhat up in the air, but given the poor games they're producing we're kind of glad Ubisoft are developing the game based on the movie. More news when it's announced.

    Capcom have hinted that Resident Evil 5 won't be released in 2006, meaning a simultaneous Revolution/PS3/XBox1.5 release is now very likely.

    LucasArts has announced that Mercenaries 2 will be released on PS3 in 2006. The game is, unsurprisingly, the sequel to the very impressive PS2 original which you can read our review of right here.

    PSP Reviews
    Prince of Persia Revelations was one of Ubisoft's big Christmas titles, and just made it into stores prior to the jolly fat man paying us all a visit. We've grabbed ourselves a copy and the chance to play one of the PS2's greatest series' on PSP was quite exciting. You can read our full verdict here now...

January 11, 2006

    Games News
    It's a game that seemed to fall off the radar prior to Christmas, and indeed the PAL version still doesn't have a specified date but Eidos have confirmed that thier highly contraversial 25 to Life has gone gold and will be released in America on January 18th. We'll let you know when Atari (the Australian distributers) set a date here.

    Software developer Jim Norwood was recently interviewed on 3D Realms' website in which he accidentally let slip that he is currently working on Lord of the Rings : The White Council at Electronic Arts. He said that "I'm currently on Lord of the Rings : The White Council at EA as a software engineer. It's a new RPG game. That's all public information, so feel free to look it up on the internet or EA's website". The article can be read here. (Note: 3D Realms has removed all references to the game from the interview).

    Those wonderful folk at Refused Classification (a kick-ass Australian website that talks about banned movies and games), has put up the details about why 50 Cent: Bulletproof has been banned in Australia with the official OFLC report. As you may remember the game was officially banned on October 24th, with Vivendi losing the appeal on November 23rd. You can check out the official reasons for the decision right here.

    PS2 Reviews
    Shadow the Hedgehog was a game which Sega were hoping could reinvent their beloved mascot. He's been quiet the last couple of years and his return with plenty of gameplay changes was one of much interest. Graham decided to review the game and discovered something very useful. A very expensive drink coaster. Don't understand? Read our review...

January 10, 2006

    Games News
    Take Two has announced they have purchased Irrational Games, the developer behind hits games including SWAT 4 and Freedom Force vs. the 3rd Reich for Vivendi. The company is currently developing Bioshock for the PC. No word yet on the company developing any PS2/PSP/PS3 games.

    OK, look. Someone simply has to stop Uwe Boll from making video game based films. They're turd and the proof is in the pudding. Bloodrayne was just released in America and apparently despite the fact that it was meant to show in over 1900 screens only 985 took up the offer. So desperate were Romar (the independant distributer) to get the movie out there that they even sent prints to theatres that didn't want it, and refused to show it. The result. An opening weekend of $US1.55 million and average vote of 2.3/10 on IMDB. What's scary though is that there's talk that Uwe Boll has been sent a copy of a Metal Gear Solid script. Think I'm lying? I'm not!

    PSP Previews
    Lemmings is a classic game being reinvented and re-released on a modern console. Do you remember Lemmings? Anyone that does will be more then enthused that they're heading to the PSP, and those that don't remember them are in for some fun.

January 9, 2006

    PS2 Reviews
    Rugby League 2 was a massive seller over the Christmas period and we thought it was high time to have a look at this latest release. Sidhe are back with a second Rugby League title and this is a fantastic representation of the sport. If you like Rugby then this review is one you should check out.

    PS2 Previews
    Black is hot, there's no doubt about it. Fantastic visuals and audio almost guarantee a stunning title. The game was summarised perfectly by Criterion's creative boss Alex Ward: "Black is about shooting stuff and blowing shit up". A preview...

January 8, 2006

    PSP Previews
    World Poker Tour is coming to the PSP in a couple of weeks. Yes, this game is also coming to the PS2, but the PSP version actually has much more content. In this preview we tell you about the extras and give you the latest screens. If you've never played poker, or don't really know the rules, don't worry as 2K Sports are including some great tutorials in the game.

January 7, 2006

    Games News
    Take Two recently held a financial call in which the company confirmed that they will be bringing the PSP title Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories to the PS2. The game is expected to be released in their second financial quarter, which is between February and April. While that is the American date we don't expect significant delays for the game to reach PAL territories, unless of course shipments to Australia mysteriously go AWOL as happened with the PSP version.

    As we mentioned the other day the CES show is currently on in America and disappointingly there has been little information regarding the Playstation 3 besides information regarding Blu-Ray. The one bit of PS3 infomation unveliled by Sony CEO Howard Stringer is that 4,000 units have been shipped to game developers around the globe already. Sony did have a PS3 on display at the event with only the Black and Silver consoles shown - no white - and interestinly the boomerang controller was no where in sight despite a sign stating "Conceptual Design". Does that mean the controller is no longer a concept? Or has Sony been rethinking the most contraversial aspect of the systems unveiling?

    We've already mentioned Blu-Ray's unveliling at the CES show, and we now have a list of the first movies available for the format. These will of course be playable through the Playstation 3 as well. Here's a list of movie studios and the movies announced:

      Sony Pictures: The Fifth Element, in multichannel uncompressed audio Bram Stoker's Dracula, Desperado, For a Few Dollars More, The Guns of Navarone, Hitch, House of Flying Daggers, A Knight's Tale, Kung Fu Hustle, The Last Waltz, Legends of the Fall, Resident Evil Apocalypse, Robocop, Sense and Sensibility, Stealth, Species, SWAT and XXX. Black Hawk Down and The Bridge on the River Kwai will also be available on 50 GB, dual-layer Blu-ray Discs Summer 2006. Stargate Atlantis is confirmed as the first TV series for the format.
      Buena Vista/Disney: Kill Bill: Vol. 1, Hero, Dark Water, Ladder 49, The Brothers Grimm, The Great Raid, Armageddon, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, Dinosaur, and the documentary Everest.
      Fox: Behind Enemy Lines, Fantastic Four, Ice Age, Kiss of the Dragon, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Two undisclosed sci-fi titles.
      Lions Gate: Dune, Lord of War,Rambo: First Blood, Reservoir Dogs, Saw, Terminator 2: Judgment Day, The Devil's Rejects, The Punisher, Total Recall, See No Evil.
      Paramount: Aeon Flux, Four Brothers, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, Mission: Impossible, Mission: Impossible 2, Mission: Impossible 3, Sahara, Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow, The Italian Job, The Manchurian Candidate, Tim Burton's Sleepy Hollow, U2: Rattle and Hum, We Were Soldiers.

January 6, 2006

    Games News

    Sony Japan has announced that they will be releasing both a 4GB and 8GB version of the Memory Stick Pro Duo during 2006. This is, of course, the memory cards used in the PSP to store game saves, photos, movies and music. No word yet on specific release dates or price were made available.

    PSP Reviews
    PSP Movie Reviews Lot #5. In this batch of PSP movie reviews we look at three of the hottest titles released (or just about to be released). First up is Sony's AFL Screamers, Shockers & Sharpshooters which look at highlights of the Austrlaian Football League in 2005 and previous years. The other two are Fox's Cheaper by the Dozen (which is due out on the 11th) and Mr & Mrs Smith (which came out last week).

    PSP Previews
    Tales of Eternia is the first true RPG to hit the Playstation Portable. It's actually a port of an older Namco title, but it was one the the best in its era and it comes as a welcome addition to the PSP's library. We take a look at the game with screens and details.

January 5, 2006

    Games News
    Today sees the start of one of the biggest Electronics events in the world, the CES, and while there is going to be very little news on the games front (the event is focused towards electronics like TV's, DVD's, computers), the show has been used by many manufacturers to confirm their Blu-Ray launches. Most companies, Sony included, are intending to launch their Blu-Ray players and recorders in mid-2006. How does this interest you? Well of course the PS3 will use Blu-Ray as a storage medium to hold up to 50GB per dual layer disc compared to 9GB for regular (read XBox 360) DVD's and means the PS3 should still hit the Q'2 launch in Japan..

    PSP Previews
    Armored Core: Formula Front is a title which, if you know what the series is about, you're likely to get excited about. When it comes to Mech based games few can dispute the fact that From Software make some of the best games with their Armored Core series. Now, it's PSP bound and we have the screens and info to proove it.

    PS2 Previews
    Psychonauts. Note: Psychonauts won Eurogamer's Game of the Year in 2005, and that's saying something. This game is from the mind that brought us gems such as Grim Fandango and Full Throttle on the PC several years ago. Now he's back with an all-new adventure game called Psychonauts - one of the funniest and most whacked-out looking games to hit the Playstation 2 during it's entire life.

    24: The Game is still still coming out before you ask. Despite the fact it was originally intended for Christmas 2005 Sony Europe is taking their time to ensure this game is just right. We'll admit that we haven't seen more then a handful of the TV episodes, but one thing is certain, this game look hot. Here's a peek at Sony's TV show tie-in.

January 4, 2006

    PSP Movie News
    Some bad news for PSP owners with Sony Pictures today confirming that both Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within and Final Fantasty: Advent Children have yet again been delayed from February to an undetermined date.

    Sony Pictures has, however, confirmed their release dates for the coming months. January 25th will see the release of Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo, The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl (in 2D), Stealth, The Longest Yard, Underworld, White Chicks and the pick of the bunch in Ronin. February 8th will see the release of Into the Blue, while March 8th will see the release of several very interesting titles including Evolution, The Exorcism of Emily Rose, Pink Panther Cartoon Collection and Metropolis (the 2001 Japanese animated movie, not the 1927 movie). We have also updated our PSP UMD Movie Release Schedule Page.

    Today sees the release of Mr & Mrs Smith on UMD, day and date with the DVD version. We'll have the review up soon, but needless to say the PSP version is extremely good in terms of video and audio quality.

    Games News

    Yves Guillemot, the head of Ubisoft, recently commented on expected release dates for the PS3. According to Jolt Online Gaming Yves had this to say about the launch. "We think September could be the right time for Sony in the US and November in Europe, Japan a bit earlier, say June or July."

    Epic Games producer Jeff Morris has declined claims that Unreal Tournament 2007 will be a launch title on PS3, and stated that the game will still hit PC first. The American Official Playstation Magazine had claimed the title would launch on the Playstation 3.

    PS2 Previews
    Mark Ecko's Getting Up Contents Under Pressure (deep breath) may have one of the longest names ever for a video game, and a premise is one that is certain to stir up some debate but Atari's upcoming game is shaping up quite nicely indeed. Here's a preview with latest screens and full voice cast list which includes talent including Sean 'P. Diddy' Combs, Brittany Murphy, Andy Dick, Adam West and Giovanni Ribisi to name a few.

January 3, 2006

    Games News
    Level 5 president Akihiro Hino has mentioned that he would like the company to concentrate on PS3 development from 2006. The company has developed two of the biggest RPG's of late (both of which still aren't confirmed for PAL release sadly), Rogue Galaxy and Dragon Quest VIII.

    Speaking of RPG's Square-Enix has confirmed they shipped 1 million copies of Kingdom Hearts II to the Japanese market. In the first week 725,591 copies were sold through to gamers. As yet there is no set date for PAL territories, but it is coming.

    PS2 Previews
    We Love Katamari, and We Love Electronic Arts for bringing this stunning series to PAL territories after the no-show of the original Katamari Damacy. Don't dismiss the game due to the cartoon styled visuals, nor the wierd gameplay. This will be a must have game this February and at a bargain price of only $49.95.

    Torino 2006 Winter Olympics is the next game in the 2K Sports range. With the Torino Winter Olympics beginning in a matter of weeks there was little doubt of a video game tie-in, and 2K sports have obliged with most of the major sports covered (and then some perhaps!). Here's a look at some of the very first screens and details.

January 2, 2006

    Games News
    Just a quick note to say Happy New Year to every one of our readers. As you can imagine the games industry is virtually shut down at the moment, but some companies will be back at work tomorrow (Tuesday) so we expect some news and info to start trickling in again soon.

    PS2 Previews
    Ty the Tasmanian Tiger 3: Night of the Quinkan may have a rather long name, but is a game well worth keeping an eye on. The first two games in the series were so impressive that Electronic Arts picked them up for release and despite the switch to Activision as the publisher this time around the game looks more impressive then ever. Here's a preview for you to check out.

December 31, 2005

    2005 Futuregamez.net Awards
    2005 Futuregamez.net Awards is online now. In case you missed it over the last week we suggest you check it out. You'll see the biggest surprises of 2005, the biggest disappointments, best distributer, publisher and developer, the best games in each category and the overall game of the year. This is something to check out now...


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