Aug 22, 2011

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Xbox Week in Review: 8/22/2011

Xbox Week in Review: 8/22/2011

Gamescom in Germany ended last week and along with a slew of updates, we’ve also got a few new titles announced for Windows Phone, XBLA, and the Kinect.  The fifth and final title of this years Summer of Arcade released this past week as well so be sure to check out our review of Toy Soldiers: Cold War here.  Read on for all the Xbox content of the past week.

  • Dance Central 2, which releases October 25 in NA, had a few new features announced at Gamescom.  Besides the full body one-on-one mode, the all new Free-4-All mini-game replaces freestyle sections during Dance Battle, adding a new competitive scoring mechanic into the mix. Players can jump ahead in score by quickly performing moves from the song worth tons of points.  Along with the changes in gameplay, there’s been four crews added for the new crew challenge mode.  The limb detection is improved, the break it down mode is more customizeable, and they’ve even added in voice controls.
  • LucasArts upcoming Kinect Star Wars hasn’t really wowed many with it’s pretty lackluster looking trailers but it may be exciting for fans to learn that for the first time ever, you can control a Rancor, the  monster Luke Skywalker battles beneath Jabba the Hutt’s throne room in Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi.  Through the Kinect, players will control the Rancor with intuitive body movements like stomping, charging, roaring, and jumping. As the Rancor, players can grab, toss, and eat Jawas, stormtroopers, droids and other enemies, plus pull TIE fighters out of the sky, fight AT-STs, and destroy everything in sight.
  • On October 11, Kinectimals will be rereleased and updated as Kinectimals Now With Bears. As indicated by the new title, it’s pretty much the original title with the addition of bears and five new cats along with the original five.  Also, Kinectimals is making it’s way to the Windows Phone.  The Windows Phone version has all the features of the console version with players using touch controls to take care of their feline friends as well as Xbox LIVE interactivity.

  • Three XBLA titles were playable at Gamescom which were Skulls Of The Shogun, Hole In The Wall, and Trials Evolution.  Hole In The Wall is based on the popular FOX show of the same name and will be a Kinect arcade title.  Players must contort their bodies into odd poses to get through oncoming walls.  Trials Evolution is the successor to the popular (not to mention ridiculously hard) physics based motorcycle game Trials HD. Expect even more enjoyable frustration with aprox. 60 new tracks across singleplayer and multiplayer as well as minigames.  Skulls Of The Shogun is an arcade strategy game much like the Nintendo favorite Advance Wars. The visuals look great as does the gameplay so stay tuned to VividGamer for more details as well as a review when it debuts.
  • Xbox LIVE for the Windows Phone is growing with the additions of Toy Soldiers Boot Camp, Chickens Can’t Fly, Beards & Beaks: Cave Area, Bug Village, TextTwist 2, and the above mentioned Kinectimals.  Toy Soldiers Boot Camp brings the addictive shooting galleries to the Windows Phone while Chickens Can’t Fly tasks players with figuring out what chickens can and can’t do.  Cave Area is the sequel to the original Beards & Beaks and finally TextTwist 2 brings the word puzzler to Windows Phones.
  • When the Xbox 360 Slims debuted, they had a glossy shine unlike the original models.  A little later on, the 4gb S console released with a matte finish and apparently Microsoft is making the transition to have all S models have the matte finish.  Major Nelson has confirmed that Microsoft will be transitioning all S models to a matte finish so if you want a glossy shell, now would be the time to get one.
  • Gears of War 3 has officially gone gold.  The game is set to release on September 20 and will be the cap of the Xbox 360 trilogy.  Along with the conclusion to the series, expect more multiplayer madness with all of your favorite modes as well as the revamped Horde 2.0

Thats all of the major news for this weeks edition of Xbox Week in Review.  It’s sad that the Summer of Arcade is over but we were definitely given some great titles this year.  Remember that the Indie Game Summer Uprising is starting this week so be sure to check out some new games from up and coming developers.  As with every week, click on over to Kyle’s PlayStation Week in Review for all things Sony related.

Thanks for reading Xbox Week in Review.  Come back next week for another summary of everything Xbox related!

*Xbox Week in Review is a feature article that recaps the most interesting Xbox news of the week. We also run PlayStation Week in Review for all your PlayStation news of the week.