So you just picked up Gears of War 3, or you’ve been playing through Dead Island, OR you’re waiting patiently to add Saints Row: The Third or Assassin’s Creed Revelations to your library. Why not expand your family gaming library by adding some of the games that you can enjoy with your kids.
Have a peek at just some of the titles available starting now and throughout the next few months.
Face Racers: Photo Finish
No. of Players:up to 4 players
ESRB: E For Everyone (contains comic mischief)
Start your turbo-charged engines and blast into the outrageous arcade racing game, Face Racers: Photo Finish, with photo customizable 3D racers that put YOU in the game! Available on the Nintendo 3DS, Face Racers delivers unique, in-your-face gameplay, with dangerous obstacles that come to life in 3D right before your eyes! Take photos with your 3DS camera and place them on the face of your custom 3D racer, billboards and power-ups. Take on friends in multiplayer mode for a true photo finish in Face Racers!
• Use your photo to customize your racer, billboards, and power-ups!
• Challenge up to 3 friends in local and online multiplayer.
• Take control of the wheel with 3DS tilt-steering.
Kirby Mass Attack
System: Nintendo DS
No. of Players: 1 player
Category: Side-Scrolling, Real Time Strategy
ESRB: E for Everyone
The evil Necrodeus uses his magic staff to split the heroic Kirby into 10 copies of himself. Players must help Kirby return to his original form and save planet Popstar from darkness by guiding him on a quest through worlds fraught with enemies and obstacles. Players start with one Kirby and add more Kirbys to their crew by gobbling up fruit. With unique touch-screen controls, players can then use the stylus to flick Kirbys to break through obstacles, tap on enemy attackers to swarm them with Kirbys or gather Kirbys together and draw a line to carefully maneuver them in a mass. If Kirbys are knocked out, players can simply gulp down more fruit to rebuild their numbers.
“With 10 Kirbys to control, players can expect 10 times the fun,” said Ron Bertram, Nintendo of Canada’s vice-president and general manager. “As consumers start thinking about games for friends and family members to enjoy this holiday season, Kirby Mass Attack is another great experience available only on Nintendo systems.”
Happy Feet Two – The Video Game
System: Nintendo Wii, Xbox 360, Playstation 3, and soon to Nintendo DS
No. of Players: 1 player
Publisher: Warner Bros.
Available: Autumn 2011 for PS3 Wii Xbox
November 2011 for 3DS & DS
“In Happy Feet Two – The Videogame, kids will not only love playing on their own, they will have even more fun playing side-by-side cooperatively with friends and family members, or compete in penguin dance showdowns and belly sliding races,” said Samantha Ryan, Senior Vice President, Production and Development, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. “The game’s all new, controller-based dance system uses the player’s rhythm to enhance the dancing competitions, and the gameplay lets kids interact with their favourite characters from the film.”
In the game, new dangers are threatening the penguin nation, and it’s going to take everyone working – and dancing – together to save them from extinction. Players use dance moves to recruit penguins with unique abilities that help advance the adventure, stun opponents and enemies, as well as manipulate the environment around them to solve co-operative puzzles.
For the ultimate experience, players can dance their Antarctic adventure in 3D. The game will be available in full 3D for the Nintendo 3DS. In the Xbox 360 and PlayStation versions, the game is made specifically for stereoscopic 3D TV sets with the ability to disable 3D functionality at any time. The Wii and Nintendo DS versions feature traditional 2D.
uDraw SpongeBob’s Surf and Skate Roadtrip
System: Nintendo DS, Xbox 360
Available: 08/11/2011 for the DS and November 8th for the Xbox 360
No. of Players: 1-2 players
ESRB: E for Everyone
Hit the sand and surf with SpongeBob and his best pal, Patrick, for some super boarding escapades! Ride mondo waves and winding waterways, and skate gnarly seaside streets and ramps for hours of challenges that’ll test your awesome boarding skills.
SpongeBob’s Surf & Skate Roadtrip is non-stop action featuring 2 modes of play” Story and Challenge. In Story Mode, SpongeBob and Patrick relive their crazy road trip to the beach through slideshows leading into arcade-style play. Freestyle your way through Challenge Mode as you, SpongeBob and his bodacious Bikini Bottom buddy explore a brand new never-before-seen world.
Key Xbox 360 Kinect Features:
- For the first time ever, you can BE SpongeBob
- Augmented reality—move your hand through the water and watch it splash!
- Compete and play with friends – show off your awesome tricks and mind-blowing stunts in head-to-head play (2-player split-screen)
- 12 awe-inspiring environments – 6 for each sport—and unlimited ways to perfect your board skills
- 7 different challenges including Flag, Timed, Score Runs
- Express yourself with a variety of righteous boards – earn even more awesome boards, the better you ride
- Strike a pose: use your camera to show off gnarly moves and tricks
Key DS Features: [call out BONUS LEVEL for DS]
- Surf and Skate across more than 24 maps
- 2-player multi-play with Single and Multi-card gaming
- Grab some air in 5 different victory conditions – Score, Collectible, Combo Mayhem, Win the Race, Untouchable
- More than 150 ways to play for unlimited hours of boarding action
- Customize your boards with colors, stamps, wheels, fins and decks
- Bonus Sport: Full Snowboarding level with 10 maps unlocked upon game completion
Super Mario 3D Land
Release Date:Nov 13, 2011
No. of Players:1 player
ESRB: E for Everyone
Get Ready for a New Spin on a Familiar Tail
Super Mario 3D Land reinvents everything fans love about Mario™ gaming with the first platforming environment in true 3D, without the need for special glasses Players will experience an exhilarating new sense of depth, distance and speed while running, jumping and stomping on enemies throughout the levels.
- Tanooki Mario returns! The fan-favorite Tanooki suit makes its first appearance on the Nintendo 3DS. Use the Tanooki suit’s tail to attack enemies or float gently down from great heights. These abilities help players move through the 3D environments with more confidence.
- 3D visuals make it easier for players to judge the depths and distances in their environments. Players can more accurately judge the jump to the next platform or how far Mario is from a question block.
- New and familiar abilities add unique game-play strategies to the adventure. Mario can perform a rolling somersault attack or run fast with a dash move.
- The Circle Pad gives players complete control to confidently move Mario through fun and challenging environments.
- New enemies include Goombas with tails, tall stacks of Goombas and a Piranha Plant that spits ink to obscure a player’s view.
Lego Harry Potter: Years 5-7
System: 3DS, DS, PC, PS3, PSP, Wii, X360, PSV
Available: 18/11/2011 for 3DS, DS, PC, PS3, PSP. Wii, 360 and during Q4 for the PSV
LEGO Harry Potter: Years 5-7 builds upon the magical gameplay, lessons and potion-making skills learned in LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4 to equip gamers with the tools necessary to challenge a host of new foes and some familiar ones (including He Who Must Not Be Named). The upcoming title is action-packed from start to finish, including loads of new lessons, spells, and bonus content for hours of family friendly gaming.
LEGO Harry Potter: Years 5-7 takes players through Harry Potter’s heroic adventures in the Muggle and wizarding worlds. From Privet Drive in Little Whinging to Diagon Alley, Hogsmeade and Hogwarts – plus new locations including Grimmauld Place, the Ministry of Magic, and Godric’s Hollow – players will encounter new faces, new challenges and new magic, preparing them for the ultimate face-off against Lord Voldemort™.
“In LEGO Harry Potter: Years 5-7, we are giving gamers a truly epic conclusion to the most successful movie franchise in history with delightful gameplay for fans of all ages,” said Tom Stone, Managing Director, TT Games. “We have built upon the first game and are giving fans even more magical abilities, puzzle solving and exploration, in addition to our distinctive brand of hilarious LEGO humour and charm.”
“LEGO Harry Potter: Years 5-7 offers Harry Potter and LEGO fans an immersive experience that is fun and accessible for players of all ages,” said Samantha Ryan, Senior Vice President, Development and Production, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. “With this game, TT Games captures everything fans love about the Harry Potter universe – and adds a distinct LEGO twist.”
“This game is a game of magic! LEGO Harry Potter: Years 5-7 distils the drama and action of Harry Potter‘s magical world, and then gives players the chance to immerse themselves in their favourite characters and environments, where they can discover new adventures and have great fun,” said Lisbeth Valther Pallesen, Executive Vice President, LEGO CED. “TT Games has successfully combined a deep appreciation of the Harry Potter story with signature LEGO humour and superior production capabilities in another fantastic LEGO video game.”
The Penguins of Madagascar Dr. Blowhole Returns Again!
System: Nintendo DS, Wii uDraw Xbox 360 Playstation 3
ESRB: E for Everyone
Dr. Blowhole is out to take over the world and only Team Penguin can foil his diabolical plans. Jump into an all-new adventure with 3 unique game episodes and over 12 exciting levels. Lead Skipper, Kowlaski, Rico and Private as you commence super-secret missions in, under and outside of the zoo, culminating in the grand finale in Dr. Blowhole’s Lair.
- Brand New, Original Story
- Dr. Blowhole, the diabolical dolphin, is back with his lobster minions and a new plan for world domination and it’s up to Team Penguin to stop him from his wave of destruction.
- Solve perilous puzzles, build crazy contraptions, nimbly navigate hazards and rescue Marlene, Mort, and the rest of the zoo crew in your mission to save the world.
- Penguin Power!
- Utilize each penguin’s unique abilities to overcome obstacles and solve puzzles. Use Skipper to assemble the team, Rico to regurgitate explosives, Kowalski to build devices and Private to squeeze through tight spaces – the possibilities are endless!
- Play through a multitude of wacky mini-games, including Ninja Knock-Down, Mort Bowling and even a dance-off with everyone’s favorite lemur, King Julien.
Have a great title in your family library that everyone in your family loves? We’d love to share it with our GamerFitNation. Be sure to leave us a comment about the family friendly titles that get extra attention in your house.
Nintendo E3 Conference: A Summary
What a kick off to E3’s official day 1! Nintendo started the day with an early morning conference that had been clad with more rumors and speculation than almost any other major player at E3 this year. During the press event Nintendo talked about some things we expected and some that we didn’t. Let’s summarize just what the conference looked like.
As the Nintendo Conference began guests were treated to a full orchestra with adorning the Nokia theatre with music and video montage from various Zelda games. The tribute to Zelda continues in celebration of the 25thanniversary of The Legend of Zelda. The entire theater was transformed into a large scale projection show. Miyamoto was introduced and spoke in English to greet the audience before calling upon the assistance of a translator.
Miyamoto shared his joy and excitement with childlike glee as we spoke about Zelda’s evolution and talked about the importance of the music in the Zelda franchise. With the use of the orchestra Miyamoto demonstrated various uses of music in the games, for example; opening a chest, help from fairies, and getting an item, etc.
In honor of the anniversary Nintendo announced the release of a Zelda game for each of the hardwares. Link’s awakening is available today from the eshop. The legend of Zelda 3d will launch next weekend around the world with revamped graphics and a new sense of scenery (and including hint movies and a boss challenge mode). Nintendo DSi will see the, 4 Swords, 4 player cooperative and Skyward Sword will be worldwide this holiday for Wii. Skyward Sword will include use of wii motion plus for accurate handling of the bow and arrow.
With the Zelda title announcements came the news that Nintendo would also be releasing a special gold wii remote as part of the 25th anniversary promotion. But the Zelda related news didn’t end there!
A series of Legend of Zelda symphony concerts will take place in major regions around the world. More details about the specific dates and cities will be released in the future. Additionally 2 music CDs will be released. The Ocarina of time official sound track will be gifted to the first users to register the game with club Nintendo as a thanks. The second CD will be released in conjunction with Skyward Sword.
Nintendo then went on to recognize some of the more than 200 talented workers who have contributed to the success of the Zelda franchise over the last 25 years by inviting them on stage to be introduced and receive recognition for their success.
Nintendo then interjected with a small teaser, stating “we have seen changes in who plays, where we play, and how we play”. Alluding to the new console that many had anticipated seeing in today’s conference Iwata then claimed that their new system, which would be “announced later this morning”, will unite all gamers.
It was then time for the 3DS portion of the presentation and the audience was shown a montage of Mario&kid Icarus&other 3ds games.
Reggie Fils-Aime, the head of Nintendo America, then took to the stage to talk 3DS. Reggie focused on a five 3DS titles:
- MarioKart “a kart game you haven’t driven before” is due out this holiday
- StarFox use buttons or turn and tilt to control. The game will offer group play (multiplayer) and the 3ds camera will record all the action, allowing you to see reactions of friends. StarFox is set for release this September.
- Mario on 3DS which we should see “before the end of this year”.
- Kid Icarus: Uprising. Game appeared to have a lot of depth and good graphis. The inclusing of a trading card component is coming soon to accompany the game. Kid Icarus will also be multiplayer.
- Luigi’s Mansion 2. Nintendo showed the trailer before explaining that this all new 3D game would include several new mansions.
3rd party development for the 3DS was then discussed and included names like: Resident Evil, Mario and Sonic Olympics, Ace Combat 3d, Tetris, Cave Story 3D, Driver: Renegade, Pacman and Galaga, Metal Gear Solid: Snake Eater 3D. Virtual console service just for 3ds was also discussed. Allowing for downloads of classic Gameboy titles and classic Nintendo titles, the virtual console was promised to be easy to use. A Free 3D version of Excitbike, which is now a 27 year old title, was promised to the audience. Pokemon for the 3DS will offer an enhanced pokedex. Pokedex 3D showed some hilarious photoshops of you with your pokemon.
Then it was time. Nintendo Café is now known as Wii U. Wii U confused us a little bit. Everyone came into this conference expecting to see a new console but instead we were shown the Wii U controller. The Wii U controller is being released to work in conjunction with your Wii, Wiimotes, and other current Nintendo paraphernalia. But there is a console… just not yet.
The Wii U controller looks a little like like a PSVita. As a 6 point controller with built in screen, the Wii U controller includes a touch pad screen as well. Nintendo says the controller includes “new controls for experienced players”.
With two analog sticks, digital direction pad, and DL- DR plus rumble feature, most of the specs of this system were kept vague. The touch screen, microphone, camera, and gyroscope were all eluded to but Nintendo was clear to report that the WiiU controller was “not designed to be a portable gaming device” but that it “just shares some characteristics.” Games can use two screens at the same time and this ability was shown in a video montage that included baseball, golf, and ninja star throwing. The device will also have vcideo chat capabilities. This will be “a new structure for home entertainment” says Nintendo
Other notable announcements included:
Smash Brothers for wii u and 3ds and swap ability between the two.
HD video graphics – showed video clip “the garden” including a swimming fish. No word on who made the clip or for what application it was created.
Put your mii in Mario kart, race with your mii.
New shooter with wii mote as a prototype.
New title in development – Lego City Stories by Tt games, a division of Warner Brothers, being made just for WiiU.
Nintendo then showed a video of developers reactions to the new ‘system’ which gave us an insight into which titles would find home on the new WiiU
- Darksiders II on the new console at launch
- Batman arkham city on the new console
- Ghost Recon Online with the new console.
- EA Sports to Nintendo new console
- Dirt, Aliens Colonial Marines.
- Metro last light (by thq)
- Tekken – showed character customization
- Ninja gaiden 3 razers edge
“WiiU can satisfy all tastes” said Nintendo. They invited EA to join them onstage. CEO John Riccitiello came onstage and spoke : We have reached a “breakthrough in our relationship based on a stunning breakthrough in game technology” he said of the partnership with WiiU.
Reggie, in interview with Adam Sessler on G4 and with Geoff Keighly on GameTrailers talked a little bit more about the specs of the new system.
- 1080p no price yet
- being launched after march 31st
- will have Internet browser – no release of other network capabilities
- optical disc – no blue ray
- “driven by gaming content and non gaming content”
- “next holiday will be about the WiiU”
- “We fully expect those [wii users] to come on board with the WiiU”
- “Price point launch date launch line up is a topic for another day.”
Be sure to check back at GamerFitNation, all this week, for more news from the E3 floor about these and other stories.
Metroid: Other M Review
Metroid: Other M takes us closer to Samus than any Metroid before. Metroid fans will be happy to see the side scrolling action and story continuation, while the Samus infatuated will be taken aback by her development. The horizontally held controller and 3rd to 1st person POV’s will have you firing weapons like nobody’s business but could a major glitch in the game keep you from completion? While you may feel strongly one way or the other about Samus herself, one thing is for certain; she kicks butt in a Wii experience like no other.
Read MORE of this review HERE at GirlGamer.com
While at Fan Expo Canada at the end of August 2010, I had the opportunity to try out the major 3 console party's motion gaming controls. I most assuredly formed some opinions about the titles and the responsiveness of the controls. I've come to the conclusion that whether willing, or kicking and screaming, my anticipation of all households containing one system with motion gaming is a confident one. My question is: which one will you buy into? Have you tried any of them?