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Tuesday March 28, 2006 Shipping Announcements

by Rainier on March 28, 2006 @ 2:36 p.m. PST

Another Tuesday, another batch of games shipped to stores. Instead of giving them all their own posts, we grouped them, and so far there are announcements for:

True Crime: New York City (PC)

True Crime: New York City puts players into the role of Marcus Reed, a former gang member turned cop, who confronts four of New York’s most deadly crime syndicates as he hunts down the murderer of his mentor, all while cleaning up neighborhoods from Chinatown to Harlem to Times Square. Mastering five fighting styles, advanced weaponry, special driving maneuvers and all-new interrogation tactics, gamers choose to walk the straight line and move up the police ranks or cross the limits of their authority.

Taking place in a present-day Manhattan, True Crime: New York City is set in an authentic recreation of the Big Apple, and includes landmarks, subways, interiors, GPS-accurate streets and real neighborhoods. If players allow crime to go unchecked in any of Manhattan’s dynamically changing neighborhoods, buildings and foliage will visibly deteriorate, the crime rate will soar, the streets will fill with trash, potholes and unsavory characters. Alternately, if players clamp down on crime in one of the many neighborhoods, crime rates fall and visual improvements will indicate the areas progress.

True Crime: New York City is rated “M” (“Mature” – Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Strong Language, Strong Sexual Content, and Use of Drugs) by the ESRB and is available for $29.99

Beatmania (PS2)

beatmania combines fun, fast-paced music with eye catching visuals to create an original experience in the music genre. Using the game’s turntable controller, players perform music by hitting keys and scratching the turntable as indicated by the action on the screen. Players can choose to perform more than 50 tracks, including music by Moby, Timo Maas and other popular songs or select tunes from one of the many leading genres of music, including pop, techno, hip-hop, drum ‘n’ bass, trance and house.

beatmania contains both the original beatmania and beatmania IIDX games that were previously released overseas. Each game consists of several different gameplay modes that make the game easy to learn, yet challenging for advanced players to master. Depending on the skill level of each player, the game can be played with either five keys plus the turntable or the controller’s full seven keys and the turntable for the ultimate intense DJ experience. Players can choose to spin alone or competitively with a friend, and even upload their high scores to an online leaderboard to see how they stack up with the competition from around the country.

“beatmania expands Konami’s leadership in the music genre with a fast-paced experience that recreates the energy of a club and puts the player at the center of the music,” said Jason Enos, Product Manager with Konami Digital Entertainment, Inc. “With two full games in one package, more than 50 diverse songs to choose from and a turntable controller that brings the hit arcade experience into the home, music fans are in for a treat when they start spinning and scratching with beatmania.”

Beatmania, rated “E10+”, is available as a bundle with the game’s turntable controller for a SRP of $59.99 or as a standalone game for a SRP of $39.99.

Daemonica (PC)

Today Daemonica from Meridian 4 makes its retail debut in stores, but will also be available via download at TotalGaming.net.

Daemonica is an exciting 3D interactive mystery set in medieval England. Take on the role of Nicholas Farepoynt, an investigator who can talk to the Dead. You will explore the dark surroundings of the slowly dying city of Cavorn, talk to both the living and dead to gather information, punish the deserved, collect herbs to make potions and enhance your senses and slowly discover what role you will play in all of this. As you strive to solve the murder of a young girl, more dead appear and the town starts to slip into insanity.

The game is priced at $29.95 standalone or 3 tokens ($20.97). More information will be availabale via www.totalgaming.net

Full Spectrum Warrior: Ten Hammers (PS2/Xbox/PC)

"Full Spectrum Warrior has shipped over a million units worldwide, and received widespread critical acclaim," said Brad Carraway, director of global brand management, THQ. "Now, Full Spectrum Warrior: Ten Hammers takes the brand's innovative and authentic gaming experience to the next level with new features and enhancements in every aspect of the game."

"The sequel has taken everything fans love about Full Spectrum Warrior, and added all new real-world military tactics, a greater variety of squads to command and a bigger arsenal of weapons," said Andrew Goldman, CEO, Pandemic Studios. "The game also features a new innovative online multiplayer competitive mode, making it one of the most robust and realistic military gaming experiences available."

As squad leader, players coordinate the actions of multiple infantry fire teams, leading them through a variety of hostile environments. An intuitive control scheme allows direction of squads in real-time as players outthink, outmaneuver and outgun enemies through more than 12 levels of intense warfare. Players will utilize authentic combat tactics as they battle the enemy with a deadly arsenal of weapons, the latest military equipment, and new player-controlled mechanized units. With an all-new multiplayer mode, players can go online and battle friends through a variety of objective-based missions.

Full Spectrum Warrior: Ten Hammers, developed by Pandemic Studios, is now available for PS2, Xbox, and PC for the suggested retail price of $39.99.

Rumble Roses XX (Xbox360)

As the “best looking” Xbox 360 game, Rumble Roses XX features more than 20 playable characters including all the popular ladies from the original Rumble Roses – such as Reiko and Dixie. Dressed in flashy outfits and equipped with several costume changes, these wrestlers defy the imagination with all-new new jaw-dropping character models, designed to take advantage of the graphical power of the Xbox 360.

Rumble Roses XX features a number of modes where players pummel their way through the game’s many characters to unlock additional opponents and items. The new Tag Team mode allows for unprecedented group mayhem in the ring, complete with special combo moves and character relationships that change with the results of each match. Dangerous curves lie ahead in Battle Royal and Handicap Match modes, while the all-new Queen’s Match lets two wrestlers battle it out with the loser performing embarrassing acts such as the limbo. The new Street Fight mode lets the girls take out their aggression outside of the ring, unleashing no-holds barred moves as they attempt to knock out their opponent. Players can now also create their own wrestlers with the game’s new Character Customization mode, choosing from a large collection of body types, outfits, accessories and fighting styles to build the ultimate female grappler. Rumble Roses XX also includes online play for up to four players, so competitors from around the country can team up with one another or go toe-to-toe.

In addition to traditional wrestling moves such as suplexes, submission holds and elbow drops, each wrestler has specific attacks linked to her personality that allow her to string together a number of moves to create unique combinations. As each character gains experience in the ring, they will become stronger, developing muscle tone and becoming more proficient in their favorite moves. With the game’s Superstar system, characters will receive bursts of energy as the crowd cheers them on to victory. Depending on how they wrestle, players will develop their character into a “face” or “heel,” each with unique moves that reflect their personality in the ring.

Rumble Roses XX is rated “M” for Mature by the ESRB and carries a SRP of $59.99.

Kingdom Hearts II (PS2)

Kingdom Hearts II features an all-star ensemble voice cast led by Haley Joel Osment (“The Sixth Sense,” “A.I. Artificial Intelligence”) as the main character Sora, joined by David Gallagher (“7th Heaven”) as Riku, and Hayden Panettiere (“Racing Stripes,” “Raising Helen”) as Kairi. Kingdom Hearts II will also feature the voice talents of Jesse McCartney (“Summerland,” Recording artist, “Beautiful Soul” CD) as the mysterious boy Roxas, Brittany Snow (“The Pacifier,” “American Dreams”) as Namine, Christopher Lee (“Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” “Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring”) as Diz; Steve Burton (“The Last Castle,” “Taken”) as Cloud, Rachael Leigh Cook (“She’s All That,” “Josie And The Pussycats”) as Tifa and Mena Suvari (“American Beauty,” “Rumor Has It”) as Aerith, all characters from FINAL FANTASY® VII; and Hedy Buress (“Boston Common,” “If These Walls Could Talk”), Tara Strong (“Fairly OddParents : Shadow Showdown,” “Teen Titans”) , Gwendoline Yeo (“Desperate Housewives,” “24”) as the popular female-trio Yuna, Rikku, Paine from FINAL FANTASY X-2. In addition, many of the original Disney film voice actors are reprising their role for this project, including Ming-Na (“ER,” “Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within”) as Mulan, James Woods (“Be Cool”) as the villain Hades and Zach Braff (“Scrubs”) as Chicken Little.

The world of Kingdom Hearts joins classic Disney characters and worlds together with a new story filled with new characters and environments from the expertise of Square Enix. The result is a remarkable, innovative, original property that has captured the attention of both gamers and critics alike. In Kingdom Hearts II, players will travel through the worlds of Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King, Mulan, Pirates of the Caribbean, Steamboat Willie and Tron as well as revisit worlds from the original, including Aladdin, Disney Castle, Hercules, The Little Mermaid, Winnie the Pooh and Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas. The game features more than 100 Disney characters, including the new additions of Chicken Little, Stitch from Lilo and Stitch and one of Disney’s favorite villains, Pete. The game also also introduces new, original characters such as Roxas, members of Organization XIII and the Nobodies, all designed by Square Enix’s Tetsuya Nomura, director and character designer of the Kingdom Hearts series. Nomura is best known for his creations in the top selling titles FINAL FANTASY VII, VIII, X and X-2.

“Kingdom Hearts II is a perfect demonstration of what can be created when two companies with astounding resources come together,” said Daishiro Okada, president and COO, Square Enix, Inc. “The result is an absolutely stunning video game that will engage gamers of all ages in multiple worlds both familiar and new."

“The creative collaboration between the Disney and Square Enix production teams has resulted in a game that is not only innovative but truly remarkable in scope,” said Graham Hopper, senior vice president and general manager, Buena Vista Games. “With the addition of new worlds from Mickey Mouse’s classic screen debut in ‘Steamboat Willie’ to the current film franchise ‘Pirates of the Caribbean,’ Kingdom Hearts II covers the spectrum of Disney properties.”

Kingdom Hearts II follows Sora, Donald, and Goofy on their continuing quest, after the events of Kingdom Hearts. Sora is looking for his lost friend Riku, while Donald and Goofy are searching for their missing king. The story begins in Twilight Town, a quiet burg nestled between night and day. Sora and friends are joined by a vibrant new cast of characters, including the king himself. Together, they will encounter countless dangers in worlds both familiar and brand new.

Kingdom Hearts II features a new and improved real-time battle system which provides an increased selection of commands, such as performing special attacks and cooperative attacks with members of your party, adding strategy to the gameplay. Players can also perform the “Drive” to transform main character Sora into his various forms, altering his skills and abilities. Examples include the Brave Form, in which Sora absorbs the power of Goofy allowing him to use two Keyblades; the Wisdom Form, in which Sora absorbs the power of Donald allowing him to increase his magic power; and the Master Form, in which Sora absorbs the power of both Donald and Goofy and increases both his attack and magic powers. These new features bring additional challenges and excitement to players and further enhance gameplay.

Kingdom Hearts II, rated the title “E10+” for ages 10 and up, is available at North American retailers for a suggested retail price of $49.99 (USD).

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