So the busy holiday shopping season officially kicks off later this week, on a day we all lovingly refer to as Black Friday. Hence why it's a bit curious that this week's line-up is somewhat limp. Other than one highly anticipated title, the rest is sorta "meh". Hope I didn't restart this column on the tad too late side...
Michael Jackson: The Experience (Wii, DS) - I've made myself pretty loud and clear as to how I feel about the game. But for those of you who are into dancing titles yet have chosen to pass on the Kinect bandwagon, or simply cannot hop onboard (such as myself and anyone else living in a tiny New York City apartment), I guess the MJ game is your next best bet (though I'm still passing, sorry).
Splatterhouse (Xbox 360, PS3) - Here's a curious release. For starters, it's somewhat well known that it's development history has been checkered to put it mildly. Next is how it's yet another classic franchise reborn, one that goes the gory horror route. Too bad revivals are no longer as hip as they used to be (never mind how the Splatterhouse name was never all that popular to being with), let alone how scary/gruesmome games in general. Still, the most recent screenshots have looked decent enough, so God of Gore might be decent in the end.
Majin and the Forsaken Kingdom (Xbox 360, PS3) - When this fantastical buddy game first made it's appearance at various trade shows, everyone sat up and took notice. For myself, the most notable part is the folks behind the effort: Game Republic. The developer was founded by one of the brightest names in the Japanese game industry, at least for a time; Yoshiki Okamoto worked on a mega ton of hits for Capcom during his stay, and is often credited as the father of Street Fighter 2. But his output as leader of his own pack has been less than stellar (I still find it hard to believe that it's responsible for that trash heap that is the Clash of the Titans game, but Wikipedia never lies). But here comes a game that might actually live up to the pedigree of it's creator. Though like everything, it's all wait and see.
Gran Turismo 5 (PS3) - Well, this is it, at long last. The fifth installment of Sony "real driving simulator", the reason why many bought the PlayStation 3 alone. After many years being worked on, and a number of annoying (though ultimately understandable delays), folks will at long last get the chance to get their hands on what has been promised to be... and may end up being... the most fully load virtual racer ever. It's got it all: rally racing, NASCAR, even go karts! We're finally getting online play, plus weather effects, along with car damage (though I certainly hope the final version is far better than what we've already seen). It's in 3D for those of you who have the necessary hardware, and there's a mind-melting car count of 1,031. All of this should more than keep you busy till Gran Turismo 6, due to his sometime in 2036.