Here’s a look at what’s looking good this weekend, with an emphasis on new releases, sales or games that are otherwise relevant.
“L.A. Noire” (rated M, $60 on Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3): In case you just woke up from hibernation and haven’t turned on the TV, the latest open-world adventure from Rockstar Games is a detective thriller set in Los Angeles in 1947. I’m working my way through the game now for an upcoming review, and so far, I’m enjoying it more than last year’s “Red Dead Redemption.” I obviously wasn’t alive in the 1940s, but it really feels like Rockstar nailed an era with the game. If you’re working your way through the game and having trouble with interrogations, you’re not alone. Check out this handy guide Joystiq put together on how to interrogate more effectively. I’ve had mixed results with interrogations so far. Some suspects are like an open book to me. I even five-starred one mission on the first go. Other people I’ve interrogated, though, have given me trouble. At any rate, I’m looking forward to playing more when I get home tonight.
“The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings” (rated M, $50 on PC): If you’re even a semi-occasional reader of this blog, you might have figured out that I prefer well-written slow-placed role-playing games over finely tuned, action-packed first-person shooters. Consequently, “The Witcher 2” is one of those rare PC-only role-playing games that really stirs my desire to build or buy a PC gaming rig. I probably won’t be up and running with a new PC in time to review “The Witcher 2,” but I’m hoping to include this sequel, which is garnering rave reviews, in my year-end coverage. I already scored “The Witcher: Enhanced Edition” in a Steam sale in preparation for playing this game.
“The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess” (rated T, $20 on Wii): Well, it took more than four years, but Nintendo finally has a budget-priced greatest hits lineup of games for the Wii. Dubbed Nintendo Selects, it launched this week. “Twilight Princess” is the best bet in the initial four games. If for some reason, you own a Wii but not “Wii Sports,” that’s your next best bet, followed by “Mario Super Sluggers” and “Animal Crossing: City Folk.”
A bunch of other Wii games: Speaking of price cuts, the Wii itself just got one. A bundle including the console and “Mario Kart Wii” will set you back $150. Not a bad deal for those late to the party on Nintendo’s console.
“Chrono Trigger” (rated E10+, $8 download on Wii Virtual Console): One of the greatest role-playing games of all time has made its way to the Virtual Console. I’d buy it, but I already have the recent DS reworking of the game and I still can’t get past the fact that Wii downloads are locked to the console you bought them on. If that’s not an issue for you, go ahead and buy.
“Fable III” (rated M, $50 on PC, also available on Xbox 360) [review of Xbox 360 version]: Lionhead Studios’ bedeviling blend of role-playing and casual game came out on PC this week.
“Fallout: New Vegas” (rated M, $60 on Xbox 360 and PS3, $50 on PC): The “Honest Hearts” downloadable add-on takes you to Utah’s Zion National Park, where, in the spirit of the full game, you’ll be caught between a bunch of warring factions. “Honest Hearts,” the second “New Vegas” add-on, will set you back $10 and is currently available for the Xbox 360 and PC.
“Crysis 2” (rated M, $60 on PC, Xbox 360 and PS3) [review]: The “Retaliation” map pack adds four new multiplayer maps for $10.
“Rift” (rated T, on sale through Steam for PC for $33.50 through the weekend): Trion Worlds’ newish massively multiplayer online role-playing game is one-third off on Steam this weekend.