“ModNation Racers” (rated E, $60 on PlayStation 3 or $30 on PlayStation Portable): Of the games I played at the Game Developers Conference in March, Sony’s kart racer was my favorite. In much the same way that “LittleBigPlanet” upped the stakes for Mario-style platform-jumping games, “ModNation Racers” tries to reinvigorate the stale kart racer with a robust slate of content-creation tools. You’ll customize the look of your driver and car before heading online to race on thousands of racetracks crated and uploaded by the game’s player base. The “auto-populate” feature, which automatically fills in scenery and power-ups, makes it so you can literally build a custom track in minutes. (Of course, you can add all this stuff in manually if you wish.) This play/create/share minigenre of games feels like the way forward.
“Super Mario Galaxy 2” (rated E, $50 on Wii): Yeah, I listed this last week, too, but it came out on Sunday and it’s probably the biggest game of the year on the Wii.
“UFC Undisputed 2010” (rated T, $60 on Xbox 360 or PS3): Maybe I’m just too old, but I’ve never really “gotten” mixed martial arts. It seems like every fight starts out as boxing but then ends up as some sort of wrestling, as sweaty, bloody dudes writhe around on the floor, trying to elbow each other in the head. At any rate, the new “UFC” game is drawing
“Blur” (rated E10+, $60 on Xbox 360 or PS3, $40 on PC): Of the three, arcade-style racers out over the past two weeks — “ModNation Racers” and “Split/Second” are the other two — Activision’s “Blur” is the only one I haven’t tried. But it’s from Bizarre Creations, the folks behind the Xbox 360’s excellent, now-defunct “Project Gotham Racing” series. Think of it as a blend of the realistic, “Forza Motorsport”/”Gran Turismo” aesthetic and “Mario Kart’s” power-up action.
“Sins of a Solar Empire” (rated T, on sale for $4 on PC at Impulse): You’re not going to find 2008’s top strategy game for a much better price than $4. It’s on sale through the weekend over at PC game download site Impulse. Also available: Both “Mass Effect” games for a combined $42 and a bundle combining “Dragon Age: Origins” with the “Awakening” expansion for $48. The “Prince of Persia” game from last year will cost you a tenspot.
“Green Day: Rock Band” demo (rated T, free on Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3): If you’re a Green Day fan itching to get your hands on the latest music game from Harmonix, you can while away the weekend with a free demo. The full game releases June 8.