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Tuesday, October 7, 2008 Shipping Announcements

by Rainier on Oct. 7, 2008 @ 5:22 a.m. PDT

Another day, 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:

Crash: Mind Over Mutant (NDS/PSP/PS2/Wii/X360)

In the deepest Crash adventure yet, Crash: Mind Over Mutant arms players with new features, including the ability not only to control enemies once they are 'jacked,' but to store the mutants in Crash's pocket, upgrade them and utilize their unique powers. Players can also roam through Wumpa Island in a two-player cooperative mode with Crash's sister Coco.

"Crash Bandicoot is one of the best loved characters in video games -- we're excited to bring him to next-gen and feature co-op play for the first time in this all-new adventure," said David Pokress, head of marketing for owned IPs, Activision, Inc. "Crash: Mind Over Mutant is a family-friendly title that captures the humor and charm of Crash Bandicoot, along with all his hilarious antics that will keep both kids and parents entertained this holiday season."

In Crash: Mind Over Mutant, a rejuvenated Neo Cortex is taking over the world one brain at a time! Cortex and N. Brio devise a new kind of evil -- a text-messaging, do-anything device that controls both mutant and bandicoot minds. The "free-romping" experience allows players to voyage and explore through intersecting worlds, giving them a new game play experience depending on which mutant Crash stores in his pocket for the ride. Armed with his wits and lightning agility, Crash must free his friends, the titans and save the day!

Developed by Radical Entertainment, Crash: Mind Over Mutant, rated "E10+" for Everyone Age 10 and up, is available on the Xbox 360, Wii, NDS, PS2 and PSP.

Fracture (PS3/X360)

A cutting-edge new intellectual property, Fracture gives players unprecedented control of the battlefield in a fight to save the very future of mankind, where the differing ideologies of cybernetics and genetics lead to a massive civil war.

Play the role of Jet Brody, an Atlantic Alliance soldier wielding a revolutionary new technology – Terrain Deformation. Build cover on the fly to thwart enemy attacks, discover hidden pathways, gain a height or tactical advantage against your enemy, and explore the world around you with a multitude of Terrain Deforming weapons and tools that literally reshape the battlefield beneath your feet.

Battle the Pacifican forces from the San Francisco Bay to the doorstep of the Atlantic Alliance in Washington D.C., or test your mettle in 12-player online multiplayer where every single map and mode is custom-built for Terrain Deformation.

The Legend of Kage 2 (NDS)

Twenty-three years after its arrival on the arcade scene, The Legend of Kage makes a triumphant return with an upgraded skill system, all-new story elements and dual-screen presentation that extends the players' range of action like never before. While maintaining the gameplay and spirit of the original release, The Legend of Kage 2 marks the evolution of a classic arcade game on Nintendo DS™.

The thrilling ninja action of The Legend of Kage 2 takes over both NDS screens, fully utilizing the dual-screen presentation and scrolling to draw players into a dynamic world filled with exhilarating midair combat. With rich, elaborate stages and a compelling story that follows the tale of two protagonists, The Legend of Kage 2 breathes renewed excitement into the classic action adventure experience.

Two protagonists, each with their own story…

The Warring States period has come to an end, and Japan is at last united under the Tokugawa government. Yet the world in which Kage and Chihiro's stories unfold is filled with bitterness and hate born from years of conflict and endless turmoil. Entrusted with a mission to protect the Princess Kirihime, the two young ninjas each embark on a fateful journey that will put their skills to the test.

Key Features :

  • The hit arcade game returns, now on a handheld console for the first time!
  • The dual-screen functionality of Nintendo DS injects life into the vibrant game world and its elaborate, action-packed stages
  • Various combinations of Element Orbs allow players to perform an assortment of skills and Ninjutsu techniques
  • Two stories told through two protagonists, both with unique attack abilities, provide twice the adventure for players

The Legend of Kage 2, rated E10+ (Everyone 10 and olderis now available at North American retailers for the suggested retail price of $19.99 (USD).

Line Rider 2 (NDS/Wii/PC)

In Line Rider 2: Unbound, the sled-stealing scumbag Chaz is up to no good and only you, as the clever and cunning Bosh, can defeat him. For Bosh to save his true love Bailey, players must solve over 40 mind-bending puzzles created by the #1 Line Rider player in the world, TechDawg. Players can also create their own puzzles and story-telling masterpieces and share them on the Internet by posting on sites such as YouTube, Facebook or the official Line Rider Web site, www.linerider2unbound.com.

Capturing the fun and thrills of the addictive Web version, Line Rider 2: Unbound features three game modes, Story Mode, Freestyle Mode and Puzzle Mode, along with dozens of new tools to enable even more creative freedom – plus the Wii version of Line Rider 2: Unbound supports Wi-Fi so players can trade and share tracks anywhere! Developed by inXile entertainment, Line Rider 2: Unbound for Wii is Rated "E" for Everyone by the ESRB and is available for $29.99 MSRP.

Line Rider 2: Unbound is also available for Nintendo DS and PC for MSRPs of $29.99 and $19.99, respectively.

NBA 09 The Inside (PSP/PS3)

NBA 09 The Inside provides fans with a comprehensive basketball game experience including character customization, unique gameplay modes and mini-games, and true-to-life NBA action in Full HD 1080p high definition. In addition to stunning graphics and realistic gameplay, a variety of exciting features such as Franchise mode, "The Life" on PS3, and an expanded Team Progression mode makes NBA 09 The Inside the most exciting basketball game franchise available.

"NBA 09 The Inside once again showcases the development talent at SCE WWS San Diego Studio and their efforts to create the best NBA game available," said Scott A. Steinberg, Vice President, Product Marketing, SCEA. "With new Franchise and The Life modes, unique mini-games, and high-def sports gaming action, NBA 09 The Inside delivers the most robust basketball gameplay available across the family of PlayStation consoles."

For the first time on PS3, NBA 09 The Inside includes "The Life," providing fans with a chance to experience the life of an NBA professional athlete as they deal with everything from interaction with teammates to earning endorsement deals for their performance on the court. This year The Life starts fresh, allowing players to control the paths of three different characters while guiding them through a variety of challenges in three distinct storylines. Players will have the chance to work their way up the ranks, including participation in the NBA Development League, in their quest for NBA glory.

NBA 09 The Inside for PS3 immerses fans in a full-featured Franchise Mode for the first time, allowing players to try their hand at running a team including the management of drafts, trades, and salaries. Additionally, team performance statistics are monitored and tracked on virtually every level. The highly acclaimed "Progression System" returns with Team Progression, where players are rewarded for game exploration and advancement by providing numerous customizable player options. This year, players will have the opportunity to create up to five custom progression players and utilize them in a number of modes including Franchise, The Life, and even online. The sights and sounds of the game will be delivered just like a true NBA broadcast with authentic calls from play-by-play announcer Kevin Calabro and in-depth color commentary from current NBA analyst Kenny "The Jet" Smith. Broadcast style overlays, newly incorporated in-game highlights, and dramatic cut scenes blend together to transport gamers into a slick and organic NBA-themed world.

For those who want to take their game on the go, NBA 09 The Inside is available for PSP, and offers the perfect combination of arcade and simulation basketball. The classic "Conquest" mode is back, allowing players to participate in a game of territory acquisition and management where awards are used to upgrade player attributes and home city amenities. "Elimiquest" is a new mini-game with an added twist, challenging players in the traditional Conquest mode but engaging in Elimination mini-game rules during play.

Carnival style mini-games also return to NBA 09 The Inside for PSP with a fresh look and new addition to the NBA franchise in "Alley Oop." Alley Oop is a table top arcade game tied to a bowling mechanic and is played with the PSP turned vertically. Players will roll a basketball up an alley, running the ball through and around a variety of goals, multipliers, and pins. Additional pick up and play mini-games return including Give & Go, Bang the Boards, FastBreak, and Elimination. The game also features a "Pick Up" mode where players can choose from 10 randomly selected NBA players to take on the CPU or challenge another player in an outdoor full-court game.

NBA 09 The Inside for PlayStation 2 delivers non-stop action with a solid NBA simulation and 16 mini-games. The Life mode is also offered on the PS2 and gamers will have the opportunity to play as each of the five starting positions as they progress through each scenario of The Life. Players will experience enhanced gameplay which means more realistic shooting, dribbling, and core fundamentals, along with improved artificial intelligence and balanced individual and team defenses.

PlayStation has also partnered with VIBE Magazine for a special promotion as part of this launch. VIBE will be prominently featured on 250,000 units of NBA '09 The Inside via an on-pack sticker. These specially marked games will include VIBE blow-in card offered in-pack featuring the cover of VIBE's 15th Anniversary Juice Issue with Jay-Z. Buyers can mail in this card for a free one-year VIBE subscription. The stickered games will be in stores from October 2008 through March 31, 2009.

The independent Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) rates NBA 09 The Inside "E" for "Everyone."

NBA 2K9 (PS2/PS3/X360/PC)

NBA 2K9 provides unmatched attention to detail this season with even more signature style animations, deeper franchise mode, adaptive AI for smarter gameplay, and innovative online features including Team Up for true online 5-on-5 matches, and Living Rosters for the most up-to-date player ratings and tendencies to bring the game to life like never before.

"Without question, NBA 2K9 is the most complete and realistic basketball simulation experience we have delivered to date," said Greg Thomas, senior vice president of sports development at 2K. "Not only did we perfect all the Signature Styles for each individual player and greatly enhance our broadcast presentation with 2K-HD, more importantly, the Adaptive AI plays an incredibly smarter basketball game this year than ever before, The Association 2.0 will be the most robust and accessible franchise mode of any sports title available, and our new and innovative online features with Team Up and Living Rosters will forever change the way basketball video games are played. It does not get any more real this season than with NBA 2K9."

NBA 2K9, the latest edition of NBA 2K and the #1 selling current gen basketball video game that has also been the #1 rated NBA simulation for seven years in a row, is back for its 10th season. NBA 2K9 is the premier basketball game for serious players, and will deliver the most realistic and feature-rich simulation experience ever available in the NBA 2K franchise – from gameplay and graphics to presentation and online features. If it happens during the regular NBA season, it will happen in NBA 2K9.

Fans can also now register online for The Other Season, a unique online fantasy league where roles are reversed and NBA 2K9 gamers get to play for real life NBA superstars who are participating as The Other Season fantasy team owners. Online gamers playing exclusively on Xbox LIVE online entertainment network and PlayStation Network will have the exciting opportunity to be drafted onto one of the NBA superstars' NBA 2K9 fantasy teams. For more information on The Other Season and official rules, please visit www.theotherseason.com.

NBA 2K9, rated E for Everyone, is now available for Xbox 360, and the PS3 and PS 2 systems. A Windows PC version will be available on October 21.

NBA Live 09 (PSP/PS2/Wii/PS3/X360)

NBA Live 09 has rewritten the rules and fundamentally shifted the way you look at sports simulation games. Powered by Synergy Sports Technology – the premier analytics provider of NBA data for more than 20 NBA teams – Dynamic DNA emulates an NBA player with absolute precision. Three components of Dynamic DNA include; Player DNA that breaks down how a player scores, Team DNA that rates how the players on the floor play as a unit and Tendencies that refer to the percentage a player drives left, right or shoots from each spot on the floor. Synergy Sports Technology indexes each possession of every NBA game in real time, producing 100 times the amount of metadata available from other stats services and has performed more than 50 million data entry points in the last two years alone.

Every game will now feel different driven by Dynamic DNA data that updates every single day of the season using NBA LIVE 365 powered by T-Mobile. NBA Live 09 is now constantly evolving and authentically reflects what you see during each NBA game in your virtual experience. If you're a sports fan, this is a dream come true – NBA Live 09 is made fresh daily, all season long2.

NBA Live 09 introduces all-new gameplay features like Pick and Roll Control, Defensive Lockdown Control, Signature Playcalling and Quickstrike Ankle-Breakers that will make the NBA LIVE experience fun from beginning to end. For those in need of some extra coaching, NBA Live 09 takes you to training camp with the NBA Academy that gives you a chance to hone your skills. Featuring 24 authentic FIBA teams with realistic team play styles and rosters, NBA Live 09 features a FIBA World Championship Mode using FIBA tournament structure, rules and court dimensions. Take your game online3 with 5 vs.5 team play, where 10 people can play together on 10 different consoles around the world.

NBA LIVE 08, rated "E" for Everyone, is available for the PS3 and Xbox 360 with an MSRP of $59.99, the Wii edition has an MSRP of $49.99, and an MSRP of $29.99 for the PS2 and PSP.

Spectrobes: Beyond The Portals (NDS)

Spectrobes: Beyond The Portals for NDS continues the story of Rallen and Jeena, planetary patrol officers who discover, excavate, awaken and train mysterious fossilized creatures known as Spectrobes and then use them to battle enemies, known as the Krawl. The story surrounds the origins of mysterious portals that lead to distant solar systems and introduces new characters, including the dark Spectrobes.

"Spectrobes: Beyond The Portals is an ambitious and immersive Nintendo DS game that significantly expands upon the features of the original," said Craig Relyea, senior vice president of global marketing, Disney Interactive Studios. "The Spectrobes franchise is a major focus for Disney Interactive Studios and this new release will continue to excite players worldwide."

Overseen by Disney Interactive Studios' Tokyo office and developed by Kyoto, Japan-based Jupiter Corp., the studio behind Spectrobes and the critically acclaimed The World Ends With You® from Square Enix, Inc., Spectrobes: Beyond The Portals has a wide array of new features. These include a new story; two new battle types -- one with the Spectrobes and another with the main character, Rallen; a new, revamped three-dimensional perspective with a view from behind the character; a map to assist with exploration; new excavation features; more than double the amount of Spectrobes; and new Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection and local wireless features. Also, for the first time, the game includes the ability to play as Rallen's partner, Jeena, to solve challenges during special missions.

The innovation from the first game continues with Spectrobes: Beyond The Portals. Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection features include: the debut of online battle; a variety of content available for download; and a robust global community site with player profiles, 50 achievable emblems, leaderboards and squads. Players can form squads with their friends to determine the best player among them. The Wi-Fi market feature enables players to list and sell their creatures to other players globally using in-game currency, known as Gura. The local wireless features include battle modes for two or four players (either as two-player teams or individually); trading creatures and fossils; and transferring existing creatures from Spectrobes to Spectrobes: Beyond The Portals (two Nintendo DS systems required during the transferring process).

Code input cards, which were introduced with Spectrobes, have been redesigned and will be unveiled with the game. The game includes a random pack of four collectible cards, each of which can be placed over the touch screen and used to enter a code with the stylus that unlocks new content. Additional cards will be available in the future through individual retail offers and other offers. In addition, the code input cards available from Spectrobes are compatible with Spectrobes: Beyond The Portals.

Spectrobes: Beyond The Portals includes DGamer, Disney Interactive Studios' innovative technology that provides a fun, connected online game community for Disney video game fans. The DGamer features in Spectrobes: Beyond The Portals include 15 unlockable badges based on accomplishments in the game, Spectrobes-related outfits for players' DGamer avatars and the ability to chat with friends using the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection or online at www.dgamer.com.

"We approached Spectrobes: Beyond The Portals with the expectations of significantly adding features and enhancing what was already a deep and successful first game," said Kentaro Hisai, producer, Disney Interactive Studios Japan. "Jupiter is among the best development studios for creating original role playing games and Spectrobes: Beyond The Portals will add to that reputation."

Spectrobes: Beyond The Portals, rated E10+ for Everyone 10 and Older, has a suggested retail price of $29.99.

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