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CAG Foreplay #52: I'm That Guy


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#1 shipwreck

shipwreck

    CAG Reviews Editor

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 12:45 PM

CAG's shipwreck & mrs. shipwreck preview the new releases for the week of September 5th, 2008. The releases are starting to arrive all hot and heavy this week and on top of that, we cover last week's games as well. Also in this episode, an interview with CAG MotzCTG who is one of the developers of this week's Xbox Live Arcade Game, Shred Nebula.

Don't forget to enter our contest for one of five copies of Shred Nebula for XBLA along with t-shirts from Crunchtime Games.

Special thanks to GoDaddy.com for providing CAG Foreplay listeners with a code for domain names for only $6.95 a year. Just enter code "GAMER1" when you check out to get your savings.



Download - 86 minutes, 39MB
Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image [digg]http://digg.com/podcasts/CAG_Foreplay[/digg]

You can now subscribe to Foreplay on iTunes by clicking this link: CAG Foreplay on iTunes

You can also contact us with any questions or comments at shipwrecks@cheapassgamer.com or foreplay@cheapassgamer.com.


Multi-Platform

Defendin De Penguin Dev. Brain Toys Pub. Crave Entertainment Systems: DS, Wii MSRP: $29.99
Last week we saw the release of an RPG-lite marketed for kids. This week the trend continues with an RTS geared toward the younger gamer. Using classic tower defense gameplay, Defendin’ De Penguin is a great start for a gamer who’s new to the strategy genre. The graphics are good, and the storyline is entertaining with all the penguins and other polar creatures. Overall, it’s a good buy for the little gamer in your life. – mrs. ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Defendin’ De Penguin.

:ds: Purchase At Amazon $29.99 (Free shipping)
:wii: Purchase At Amazon $29.99 (Free shipping)

FaceBreaker Dev. EA Canada Pub. Electronic Arts Systems: 360, PS3 MSRP: $49.99
This new boxing title has cartoon-ish graphics and over-the-top characters to go along with its arcade style gameplay. While I’m not a huge boxing gamer, I can still appreciate the fun that’s had with arcade-style sports games. Since this one was developed by the same team that brought us Fight Night Round 3, I’m betting it will be a solid buy. Plus, the demo is available for playing prior to purchase. – mrs. ship

Best Deal: Circuit City is offering a free $10 gift card with the purchase of FaceBreaker.

:360: Purchase At Amazon $49.99 (Free shipping)
:360: Purchase At Circuit City $49.99 (Free $10 gift card)
:ps3: Purchase At Amazon $49.99 (Free shipping)
:ps3: Purchase At Circuit City $49.99 (Free $10 gift card)

Ferrari Challenge: Trofeo Pirelli (Last Week) Dev. Eutechnyx Pub. Activision Systems: DS, PS2, Wii, PS3 MSRP: $29.99-$59.99
For you commoners who want to see if it really is “so choice” to drive a Ferrari everyday, System 3’s Ferrari Challenge: Trofeo Pirelli lets you experience the feeling of not being able to stop for groceries on your way home. A spiritual follow-up to the classic F355 Challenge, this simulation (with arcade tendencies) offers thirty-two different “prancing horses” to gallop around sixteen different tracks against up to fifteen online players. If you’re looking to fill that racing void until a proper Gran Turismo hits, or maybe want a racer for the Wii that simulates more than getting bonked with turtle shells, then if you have the means, I highly recommend picking this up. (Well, not highly, but the quote wouldn’t work nearly as well if I didn’t say that. The game looks pretty good though. Oh, and for the record, I actually drive a Hyundai. It’s so choice.) - ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Ferrari Challenge: Trofeo Pirelli.

:ds: Purchase At Amazon $29.99 (Free shipping)
:ps2: Purchase At Amazon $39.99 (Free shipping)
:ps3: Purchase At Amazon $59.99 (Free shipping)
:wii: Purchase At Amazon $49.99 (Free shipping)

Mercenaries 2: World in Flames Dev. Pandemic Studios Pub. Electronic Arts Systems: PS2, PC, 360, PS3 MSRP: $39.99-$59.99
It's been a long time coming, but Mercenaries 2 is finally here to fill your destructive appetite for blowing things up in an open world environment. And while I enjoyed the first one and think the addition of co-op to this sequel is a smart move, for some reason I just can't get excited for this game. I guess you could say it's just not setting my world aflame. Of course if you said that, Mrs. Ship would just roll her eyes. Trust me. The game has been getting good reviews though, so if you want to contract some mindless fun, Mercenaries 2 probably won't bomb. (Unlike this preview. Geez.) - ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Mercenaries 2: World in Flames.

:360: Purchase At Amazon $59.99 (Free shipping)
:pc: Purchase At Amazon $49.99 (Free shipping)
:ps2: Purchase At Amazon $39.99 (Free shipping)
:ps3: Purchase At Amazon $59.99 (Free shipping)

N+ (Last Week) Dev. SilverBirch Studios - Metanet Software Pub. Atari Systems: DS, PSP MSRP: $19.99
Stick Ninja goodness, now in portable form. (I could have sworn I had a Deja Preview around here somewhere...) - ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for N+.

:ds: Purchase At Amazon $19.99 (Free shipping on orders over $25)
:psp: Purchase At Amazon $19.99 (Free shipping on orders over $25)




NFL Head Coach 09 Dev. Tiburon Pub. Electronic Arts Systems: 360, PS3 MSRP: $49.99
For those of you who bought Madden and were bothered by all the actual football playing, why not just call the plays? NFL Head Coach allows you to hone your OCD skills with lots of minutia to keep track of from draft day to Superbowl sunday. If you bought the Fantasy Football Draft Tracker and you've been wearing out your copy of Madden over the past few weeks, then this game might be just what you need, but with less football. I'm fairly positive that there are at least three teams in the NFL that might be benefited by ditching their human head coaches and just going with the whatever the game says to do. And yes, the Bengals are on that list. - mrs. ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for NFL Head Coach 09.

:360: Purchase At Amazon $49.99 (Free shipping)
:ps3: Purchase At Amazon $49.99 (Free shipping)

Rapala Fishing Frenzy Dev. Fun Labs Pub. Activision Systems: 360, PS3, Wii MSRP: $39.99, $49.99
I actually saw someone in Best Buy last week picking up a Rapala fishing game for the Wii. I almost stopped him to tell him to just wait a week and the new one would be out. Then I thought, “Oh, he’ll be just fine with last year’s fish roster”. Wii owners get to pay $10 more because they get a plastic fishing rod.

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Rapala Fishing Frenzy.

:360: Purchase At Amazon $39.99 (Free shipping)
:ps3: Purchase At Amazon $39.99 (Free shipping)
:wii: Purchase At Amazon $49.99 (Free shipping)

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 09 (Last Week) Dev. EA Tiburon Pub. Electronic Arts Systems: PS2, PSP, Wii, 360, PS3 MSRP: $39.99-$59.99
I haven't played a golf game in a long while. So what made me play the demo of Tiger Woods PGA Tour 09 for an hour? Golf games are strangely addictive. This one has several new features that those who never miss a tee-time will want to know about. First, there's Performance Coach that constantly adjusts your skill levels while you play, similar to the Madden IQ. At the end of your round, the coach will offer up some simple skill challenges that, when achieved, will add additional skill points to your levels. There's also a Club Tuner for people who always slice the ball or need more power. There's also simultaneous online play, so you can play online with friends without having any downtime. The Wii version uses the Wii-mote control scheme to give added realism. Overall, I liked the game and didn't see any reason why golf lovers shouldn't like it too. - mrs. ship

Best Deal: Target is offering a free $10 gift card with the purchase of Tiger Woods PGA Tour 09 for the Wii, 360, or PS3.

:360: Purchase At Amazon $59.99 (Free shipping)
:ps2: Purchase At Amazon $39.99 (Free shipping)
:ps3: Purchase At Amazon $59.99 (Free shipping)
:psp: Purchase At Amazon $39.99 (Free shipping)
:wii: Purchase At Amazon $49.99 (Free shipping)


Wii

Ford Racing Off Road Dev. Razorworks Pub. Crave Entertainment Systems: Wii MSRP: $29.99
(Deja Preview) Anybody remember Test Drive Off-Road for the original PlayStation? (Yeah, I actually thought that game was pretty amazing in its day.) Well, Ford Racing Off Road hopes you still have a soft spot for racing SUVs through barren desert, swamp, and ice tracks while looking for shortcuts hidden carefully amongst the budget graphics. Not content with just driving around Escapes, Explorers, and Rangers? Well, you can also get behind the wheel of concept vehicles and several different Land Rovers such as the 2005 Defender 90 Station Wagon. Alright, station wagons, now we’re talking. Now if only we can get confirmation on that unlockable Family Truckster. - ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Ford Racing Off Road.

:wii: Purchase At Amazon $29.99 (Free shipping)

Freddi Fish: Kelp Seed Mystery Dev. Pub. Majesco Systems: Wii MSRP: $19.99
(Deja Preview) Also known as Freddi Fish: The Case of The Missing Kelp Seeds, this game features a well-known PC character who appeals to the youngins. I remember playing these PC titles when I was babysitting over and over and over again. They have a simplistic mix of point-and-click exploring and puzzles, and with the $20 price tag, are perfect for the family gamer. Also look for the new Pajama Sam and Spy Fox titles coming soon. - mrs. ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Freddi Fish: Kelp Seed Mystery.

:wii: Purchase At Amazon $19.99 (Free shipping on orders over $25)

Mario Super Sluggers (Last Week) Dev. Nintendo Pub. Nintendo Systems: Wii MSRP: $49.99
One of the big releases this week follows the simple formula that seems to be working so well for Nintendo: Mario + any sport = big $$$$. Unlike the early versions of the game, the final version supports using the Wii-mote like a bat or arm to hit/pitch (Wii-mote only mode), while the analog stick, A, and B buttons can also be used (Wii-mote and Nunchuck control mode). Plus, there's some added old-school charm in that you can turn the Wii-mote and use it like a classic controller. All gamers should be able to find a control scheme that works for them. The gameplay is very similar to what we saw on the GameCube in Mario Superstar Baseball. There are some reported nuances that make fielding difficult, but the millions of characters and great graphics make the game a solid one overall. - mrs. ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Mario Super Sluggers.

:wii: Purchase At Amazon $49.99 (Free shipping)

Pajama Sam in Don't Fear the Dark Dev. Pub. Majesco Systems: Wii MSRP: $19.99
Spy Fox in Dry Cereal Dev. Pub. Majesco Systems: Wii MSRP: $19.99
These point-and-click adventure titles are fun with a slight bit of edutainment thrown in. Originally PC characters, these franchises will find a nice home on the Wii with the younger gamer. If you know someone who fits into that category (I would say ages 4-8 ish), then you should give these titles a closer look. - mrs. ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Pajama Sam in Don’t Fear the Dark.

:wii: Purchase At Amazon $19.99 (Free shipping on orders over $25)

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Spy Fox in Dry Cereal.

:wii: Purchase At Amazon $19.99 (Free shipping on orders over $25)


DS

Digimon World Championship (Last Week) Dev. Namco Bandai Pub. Namco Bandai Systems: DS MSRP: $29.99
The Digimon series of games has traditionally been filled with solid RPG titles featuring the well-known Japanese characters. With this title, they instead elected to release a monster battler with RPG elements and some strategy thrown in. To be honest, I've never played any of these games. So, when reviewers who outright profess their love for the gaming franchise call this new release "crap" and uses phrases like "it's a chore to play", I'm pretty much going to take their word for it. - mrs. ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Digimon World Championship.

:ds: Purchase At Amazon $29.99 (Free shipping)

From the Abyss (Last Week) Dev. Sonic Powered Pub. Aksys Systems: DS MSRP: $29.99
An action-RPG in the vein of the classic Secret of Mana, From the Abyss offers up random dungeons, multiple playable character classes, and an appealing 16-bit overhead view. The action looks fun and whimsical and after defeating enemies you can suck up their souls to learn new skills. The one drawback I see for this game is that there is only local co-op, and even with that, you cannot play through the campaign, but merely play through a special dungeon in hopes of uncovering items and equipment for your characters. If I can randomly generate $30, I’d like to give this one a go. - ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for From the Abyss.

:ds: Purchase At Amazon $29.99 (Free shipping)

Harvest Moon: Island of Happiness (Last Week) Dev. Marvelous Pub. Natsume Systems: DS MSRP: $29.99
Why mess with a franchise that isn't broken? In the newest hand-held version of the beloved Harvest Moon, our little friend is shipwrecked (along with the key business-owning townspeople) on a deserted island. Other than some added touch-screen controls and a bit more 3D animation, the game is what you'd expect (did I mention that this title is a farm sim?). I'm buying it, not expecting it to be anything new and ground-breaking, but looking for some reliable DS entertainment for the next few weeks. Until I get bored and move on to something else. - mrs. ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Harvest Moon: Island of Happiness.

:ds: Purchase At Amazon $29.99 (Free shipping)

MLB Power Pros 2008 (Last Week) Dev. Konami Pub. 2K Games Systems: DS MSRP: $29.99
(Deja Preview) Ever wondered what your favorite baseball players would look like if they were all Tony Gwynn-shaped? Well, MLB Power Pros is back for its second season Stateside and not too much has changed with the adorable take on America’s Pastime, but the rosters have been updated and an even larger RPG type mode has been included in the form of "MLB Life". This mode allows you to follow the path of either a created character or an actual Major Leaguer over the course of twenty years starting in the minor leagues and continuing all the way through retirement. The RPG elements are played outside the lines, where you must manage your characters finances, buy houses, and even try to land that trophy wife. And this is all in addition to the returning "Success Mode" that follows a younger, school days scenario. It's a steal to get this amount of content for such a low price, especially if you go with the $20 PlayStation 2 version, since doubling the price only provides you with Wii-specific controls that are limited to exhibition games and the Home Run Derby. Hey, that extra $20 could get me a dog and a brew the next time I go see the Reds lose. - ship

Unfortunately, for some reason they've removed all of the interesting RPG elements from the DS version leaving you with only a Playoff Mode, Single Game Exhibition, and a Home Run Derby. Error charged to Konami. - ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for MLB Power Pros 2008.

:ds: Purchase At Amazon $29.99 (Free shipping)

My Chinese Coach (Last Week) Dev. Pub. UbiSoft Systems: DS MSRP: $29.99
It seems to me that maybe releasing this game 2 & 1/2 weeks ago might have made more sense. I mean, slap Michael Phelp's picture on the front and make some clever comment how you too can learn to say "Where's my gold medal?" in Chinese. One million copies sold, just like that. Realistically, these language coach games are decent for people taking some other sort of language instruction who would like to practice what they're learning. My Japanese Coach comes out in September, and we all agree that might be just what Cheapy needs. - mrs. ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for My Chinese Coach.

:ds: Purchase At Amazon $29.99 (Free shipping)

PictoImage (Last Week) Dev. Sega Pub. Sega Systems: DS MSRP: $19.99
At first I thought that this title might be a Picross-type budget game that we could all enjoy. Alas, the happy children on the cover have told me that, no, this game is mini-game compilation based on free-hand drawing. The majority of the gameplay is based around multi-player action and functions like Pictionary. There is a single-player mode and an instructional drawing mode as well. Sadly there's no WiFi, so playing multi-player requires you to pass the DS around. I have never thought that Pictionary is a board game that can make the jump to video game well, at least with the systems we currently use. It just seems like one of those games that's played best with a group of people physically sitting in the same room. Maybe if there were a drawing tablet input of some kind, similar to a PC tablet. Until then, I just don't see myself playing Pictionary PictoImage on my DS. - mrs. ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for PictoImage.

:ds: Purchase At Amazon $19.99 (Free shipping on orders over $25)

The Quest Trio (Last Week) Dev. Pub. Activision Systems: DS MSRP: $19.99
Immediately, I think that some really great Japanese RPG title must have not translated well for someone to be releasing a game called The Quest Trio. But no, this is Jewel Quest, Mahjong, and some third game that shall remain nameless packaged in a compilation. There's no box art or game description to be had on the Internets, so you may or may not see this game released this week. I like Jewel Quest and Mahjong, but I'd prefer to wait until this title drops to $10 to pick it up. - mrs. ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for The Quest Trio.

:ds: Purchase At Amazon $19.99 (Free shipping on orders over $25)

Rain Drops Dev. UFO Pub. UFO Systems: DS MSRP: $19.99
From the publisher: “Enter the vibrant world of the Rain Drops and discover a fun and exciting adventure! Carefully time the movements and link them together as they burst into joy! Unlock special items and skills that will allow you to assist the Rain Drops on this magical journey, while gaining trophies and awards for your feats!” My guess is that they couldn’t come right out and say they were marketing a puzzle adventure game for people addicted to LSD. – mrs. ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Rain Drops.

:ds: Purchase At Amazon $19.99 (Free shipping on orders over $25)

The Sims 2: Apartment Pets (Last Week) Dev. Pub. Electronic Arts Systems: DS MSRP: $29.99
Sorry ladies, no ponies here. Instead, you get to experience apartment life with your choice of domestic animal ranging from bunnies to doggies. - ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for The Sims 2: Apartment Pets.

:ds: Purchase At Amazon $29.99 (Free shipping)




PlayStation 3

Disgaea 3: Absence of Justice (Last Week) Dev. Nippon Ichi Software Pub. NIS Systems: PS3 MSRP: $49.99
Return to the adorable strategy RPG world of humans, demons, and exploding penguins in Disgaea's first offering on current gen systems. Fans of the series will be pleased to hear that NIS really hasn't tinkered too much with their winning formula, but have instead just tweaked and expanded upon it. Expect more sprawling environments with changes in elevation and a larger cast of characters that encompasses series favorites and newcomers alike. You’ll most likely get your 120 hours worth out of it. - ship

Best Deal: Amazon is offering Disgaea 3: Absence of Justice for $47 shipped.

:ps3: Purchase At Amazon $46.99 (Free shipping)

Vampire Rain: Altered Species Dev. Artoon Pub. Ignition Entertainment Systems: PS3 MSRP: $39.99
(Deja Preview) Caution... Game Over. Caution... Game Over. Caution... Game Over. A perfect example of why a Splinter Cell/Resident Evil mash-up should never be attempted by the developers of Blinx the Time Sweeper. Well, there's a lot of rain and it certainly does suck, so at least it's aptly named. What we have here is a trial and error clusterfuck of Caution... Game Over. As I was saying, a trial and error clusterfuck of masterful proportions that Caution... Game Over. Grr... a trial and error clusterfuck of masterful proportions that forces you to repeat section after section and Caution... I'm shooting him, I'm shooting him... Game Over. Caution... Preview Over. – ship

Hopefully, they’ve done more than just add a subtitle for the PlayStation 3 release of Vampire Rain. Might I suggest maybe removing a few Caution… Game Overs? - ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Vampire Rain: Altered Species.

:ps3: Purchase At Amazon $39.99 (Free shipping)


PlayStation 2

DT Carnage (Last Week) Dev. Agetec Pub. Agetec Systems: PS2 MSRP: $14.99
Many of you may be familiar with the "DT" series of racing games from their storied history of being saran-wrapped along with two or three other budget games perpetually sitting at the bottom of your local Wal-Mart display cases. Well, this latest entry into the budget racing scene combines the arcade style racing of Burnout with the, well, arcade style racing of Full Auto as weapons are adorned to your ride by running through Mario Kart-esque power-up boxes. Of course we're talking budget production values here, but the game doesn't skimp on the features with several different racing modes, an unlockable skill tree, mini-games like car bowling, and timed maze escape levels. - ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for DT Carnage.

:ps2: Purchase At Amazon $14.99 (Free shipping on orders over $25)

Falling Stars (Last Week) Dev. Ivolgamus Pub. Agetec Systems: PS2 MSRP: $14.99
(Deja Preview) Falling Stars is an RPG title aimed at kids. The main character comes complete with a trainable pet that resembles the Disney alien, Stitch. There are mini-games weaved into the gameplay, along with customizable outfits. Since this title isn’t really on the top of the new-release radar, there haven’t been any in-depth reviews out but the few press scores available are decent. If you have a younger child that might enjoy some simplified RPG action, this title might be a consideration. - mrs. ship

Best Deal: There don't seem to be any specific deals for Falling Stars.

:ps2: Purchase At Amazon $14.99 (Free shipping on orders over $15)


Xbox 360

Infinite Undiscovery Dev. tri-Ace Inc. Pub. Square Enix Systems: 360 MSRP: $59.99
Square Enix's horribly titled action RPG further diversifies the Xbox 360 library this week with the age old tale of a young man that must save the world with the help of his friends and acquaintances that he meets along the way. You can bring up to twelve of these compatriots into battle and they'll do their own thing, but are available to aid you if you call on them while you are duking it out with the baddies. While not exactly breaking much new ground, the intended audience should get enjoyment out of the thirty hour experience. - ship

Best Deal: Best Buy has an exclusive metallic style box art for Infinite Undiscovery.

:360: Purchase At Amazon $59.99 (Free shipping)
:360: Purchase At Best Buy $59.99 (Free shipping and exclusive metallic box art)

Tales of Vesperia (Last Week) Dev. Namco Bandai Pub. Namco Bandai Systems: 360 MSRP: $59.99
Those of you that played Namco Bandai's Eternal Sonata will experience feelings of deja-vu as you begin playing Tales of Vesperia. Featuring a familiar animation style, a familiar world environment with pre-set paths, and a real-time battle system, it's kind of uncanny the similarities between the two. I guess it comes down to whether or not you want to adventure around inside Chopin's head or whether you would rather explore a familiar fantasy style environment... which looks somewhat similar to the inside of Chopin's head. - ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Tales of Vesperia.

:360: Purchase At Amazon $59.99 (Free shipping)
:360: Purchase At Amazon $69.99 (Free shipping)

Viva Pinata: Trouble in Paradise Dev. Rare Pub. Microsoft Systems: 360 MSRP: $39.99
While the gameplay isn't anything drastically different than the first Viva Pinata, there are a few changes that make the game feel like a sequel and not purely more-of-the-same. First off, there are new environments: an arid desert and a frozen tundra. Of course, along with these new landscapes comes new Pinatas, and that’s what really excites me about this game. There are 32 new pinatas, to be exact. While you can't garden in the desert or the tundra, you can set traps to catch local pinatas and return them to your garden. This allows you to function like the hunter in the first game. The other thing that's new are the pinata vision cards, which function similarly to Eye of Vision on the PS3. Input cards and obtain new pinatas. There is more than just the one gameplay mode this time around: there's co-op play, online multiplayer, and a "for fun" mode that gives you unlimited funds and no sour pinatas to ruin your garden. All in all, this sequel is indeed more of the same, but with enough new content to still make me want to play it obsessively. - mrs. ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Viva Pinata: Trouble in Paradise.

:360: Purchase At Amazon $39.99 (Free shipping)

Warhammer: Battle March Dev. Black Hole Entertainment Pub. Namco Bandai Systems: 360 MSRP: $59.99
Gathered from the resources of the 2006 Warhammer: Mark of Chaos PC release, Battle March is the next in the seemingly endless wave of real-time strategy games that are besieging the Xbox 360. This version adds two new playable armies in the Dark Elves and Orcs & Goblins, which ups the total number of allegiances to six (Empire, Chaos, Skaven, and High Elves being the returning factions). The series forgoes resource management and instead concentrates on tactics and combats, so you can focus on those three other console RTS players your playing and not have to worry about mining ore. - ship

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Warhammer: Battle March.

:360: Purchase At Amazon $59.99 (Free shipping)


PC

The Sims 2: Apartment Life (Last Week) Dev. Electronic Arts Pub. Electronic Arts Systems: PC MSRP: $29.99
This is the eighth expansion for Sims 2 in four years - excluding all of the "Stuff" packs. I've had a love/hate relationship with the Sims series for years. To me, Sims 2 and its early expansions are some of the most incredible fishbowl experiences available. I am genuinely excited for Sims 3 coming early next year; As such, this final swansong expansion pack for the core Sims 2 leaves me with a big, "Really?". Half of the experience from the Sims franchise comes from designing and improving your living quarters, and I don't think anyone wants to spin their narrative in a confined and permanent box. Granted, there are probably going to be some neat new objects, but with Sims 3 looming on the horizon, I'm going to give this one a big PAZZ. Note: There is a limited edition for $10 more that includes
Sims 2: Deluxe - well worth it if you still don't have Sims 2. - Treehouse Gamer

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for The Sims 2: Apartment Life.

:pc: Purchase At Amazon $29.99 (Free shipping)
:pc: Purchase At Amazon $39.99 (Free shipping)

Penumbra: Requiem (Last Week) Dev. Frictional Games Pub. Paradox Interactive Systems: PC MSRP: $9.99
I am not much into horror. Sure, I enjoy Shaun of the Dead enough, but the beginning parts of Condemned: Criminal Origin made me poop my pants. However, if you're into horror games, you should probably look forward to Penumbra: Requiem. This is the third title of the Penumbra series which are budget horror adventure titles. The graphics are standard budget fare, but the general ambience and physics-based puzzles are supposed to be worth the admission price. Pick up Penumbra: Black Plague (the second in the series) for $10 at various outlets if this is your type of thing. - Treehouse Gamer

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Penumbra: Requiem.

:pc: Purchase At GamersGate $9.99

Prison Tycoon 4: SuperMax (Last Week) Dev. Valusoft Pub. Valusoft Systems: PC MSRP: $19.99
I have no idea what this game's about (and there are absolutely no previews anywhere), but I'm excited. As heard on GFW Radio, this game probably has something to do with running a prison for profits. The fact that this is the FOURTH (!!) in the series is incredible. Let's do a fantasy preview: This game puts you in your own virtual Alcatraz. As the head of the prison, you get to decide how much security is available throughout: will you let Tyrone shank Billy in the cafeteria? New this year: lower the rations for the prisoners and let them cannabilize each other in arena combat. Hilarity ensues! Whether or not these made-up features make it into the game, I am sure that Prison Tycoon 4: SuperMax will become the pinnacle of PC gaming for years. Well, until the release of Prison Tycoon 5: SoapDropper. - Treehouse Gamer

Best Deal: There don’t seem to be any specific deals for Prison Tycoon 4: SuperMax.

:pc: Purchase At Amazon $19.99 (Free shipping on orders over $25)



On The DL with the Shipwrecks

Helix (Last Week) Systems: WiiWare MSRP: $10
Hmmmmm. While I appreciate the preview videos that the Wii Channel has to offer, this is one game that could really benefit from having a demo. It's a rhythm-based music title that requires two Wii-motes and a lot of room to move. Similar to the music bar found in Guitar Hero or Rock Band, each note corresponds to a different movement. These movements, when strung together and set to some cool tech-no dance tunes, resemble dancing. And there you have Helix. - mrs. ship

My Aquarium Systems: WiiWare MSRP: $5
Since I don't really want to talk much about what can only be a fairly self-explanatory virtual pet game, I'll tell a little story instead. Once, a few weeks ago, Ship and I went to Wal-mart. Now, I usually don't peruse the pet department in Wal-mart, as the dirty aquariums make me sad. But, for some reason I was drawn to the goldfish. I like goldfish, especially the little ones with the fan tails. So what do I see? A one-eyed goldfish swimming around the tank. Around and around and around he went. It looked like he had been born with just one eye, as there was no wound or anything, just no eye on the right side. Of course, the vet in me immediately wanted to take him home. I mean, who else that goes to Wal-mart to buy goldfish is going to pick out the fish with one eye? Ship said no. And last week, when we went back to Wal-mart (it's 1/4 mile from our house - we go there a lot), the tanks were all empty! Sadly, I don't want to know what happened to the little fishy. I'll write a virtual aquarium preview when the developers come out with a one-eyed goldfish. - mrs. ship

Clu Clu Land Systems: Wii VC (NES) MSRP: $5
One of the earliest Nintendo NES games hits the Virtual Console this week. A sort of Pac-Man-esque game where you must steer the main blob around through the pegs. Its legacy lies with its sprites that would become famously known as Rupees and Octorocs. - ship

Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars Systems: Wii VC (SNES) MSRP: $8
Ship and I downloaded this Mario classic because neither of us had ever played it. It's a simple RPG with everything you'd expect. The graphics are SNES quality but looked a bit pixilated on our huge TV. The controls got a little awkward just because the A button is the command button while the B button jumps: this is opposite from how a "normal" Mario game is controlled. The only other weird thing about the game is seeing Mario punch an enemy: it seems unnatural to have him use his hands while fighting. Overall, this game is a good Mario game that you might have missed along the way. It's worth playing now if you haven't already. - mrs. ship

Samurai Shodown II (Last Week) Systems: Wii VC (NEOGEO) MSRP: $9
Long Long Ago, there were a man who tried to make his skills ultimate. Because of his bloody life, its no accident that he was involved in the troubles. As the game's intro clearly states, now you have the ability to hone your ultimate skills and be involved in the troubles with the sequel to Samurai Shodown hitting the Virtual Console this week. The follow-up expands on the original by adding four new characters and new environments, fleshing out the fighting mechanic with more defensive maneuvers, and of course, a ridiculous amount of Engrish. - ship

Ys Book I & II (Last Week) Systems: Wii VC (TG-16) MSRP: $8
I've never played any of the Ys series, but eight dollars for a compilation of two very well received action-RPGs will probably get me started. Probably the most intriguing aspect of the game is that you simply fight enemies by running into them, no you don't swing a sword or enter a turn-based battle, you just run into them. The game then calculates the percentages based upon your level, the enemies level, and the angle at which you bumped into your foe. Pro tip: don't run into the pointy side. - ship

The Last Guy (Last Week) Systems: PS3 MSRP: $9.99
The Google Maps zombie invasion is upon us and it's up to you, the last guy, to run around collecting survivors and dropping them off in safe zones. While I kind of enjoyed the demo, I found it a little simplistic and I actually had a hard time distinguishing exactly what was going on since everything is viewed from satellites. I'd suggest at least giving the demo a try though. - ship

Castle Crashers (Last Week) Systems: XBLA MSRP: $15
This charming four-player beat 'em up has been on the XBLA radar for what seems like eternity, but it is finally in the giddy hands old-school gamers everywhere. With a good sense of humor, appealing hand-drawn graphics, and the ability to level up you characters as you go along, it's no wonder so many people on my friends list plunked down the $15. - ship

Gin Rummy Systems: XBLA MSRP: $5
The title says it all: Gin Rummy. Do I really need to explain this one? - mrs. ship

Shred Nebula Systems: XBLA MSRP: $10
With a CAG on the development team, you know there's going to be value built right in, and what at first glance looks to be another twin-stick shooter in a crowded twin-stick shooter marketplace actually turns out to be a very unique top-down shooter with Asteroids roots. The controls take a bit to get used to because rather than just pointing with the left stick, you actually control your forward and aft thrusts with the left shoulder buttons and the majority of the firing is done with the "X" button (although you have secondary attacks and eventually upgrade your ship to have weapons mapped to the right stick). You really have to give it a play to understand the control scheme, but there's a lot of more depth with what you can generally do in most of the other shooters on XBLA. Plus, there's both co-op and online multiplayer deathmatch modes in addition to the single player story and score attack modes. Nicely done MotzCTG! - ship

Pirates vs. Ninjas Dodgeball Systems: XBLA MSRP: $10
The age-old debate will be settled this week as everyone’s favorite internet memes take to the field to play every gym teacher’s favorite vendetta against social outcasts. With four-player co-op and up to eight player matches on Live, Pirates vs. Ninjas Dodgeball is shaping up to be a humorous party-style game that shares similarities with the PowerStones and Kung Fu Chaos' of yesteryear. Oh, and if you're more in the Robot or Zombie camp, this game has you covered there as well. - ship


Feedback:
Did we miss a good sale on a game? Did we miss previewing a game completely? Well, the only way that everyone can know a better deal is out there is to let us know about it. Post deals you've found or games that we missed in the thread so that CAGs can make sure they are getting the absolute best prices on new releases.

Edited by shipwreck, 07 September 2008 - 01:21 PM.

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#2 cdrober

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    Too many games & too little time.

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 01:26 PM

Thanks for another episode! I will listen when I get home from work but excellent write up. Thanks for the good work on this and just letting you knwo I, and I'm sure everyone else too, appreciates the nice consise previews for all this stuff.

Maybe one week there should be a special "Shipwreck and Mrs. Shipwreck Appreciation Week."

#3 D. Monic

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 03:04 PM

Just a quick correction: there's no need to pay $10 extra for the Wii version of Rapala Fishing Frenzy. Walmart, TRU, and Amazon all offer it for $39.99 (and yes, they include the pole).

#4 Munchkins

Munchkins

Posted 05 September 2008 - 03:13 PM

Yes finally another episode =). I'm sure it will be great as always just wanted to say thanks for taking the time out to put out episodes for us.

#5 SuxoR

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    What choice did I have?

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 03:25 PM

Great episode as usually so far (still listening)

How come Shipwrecks voice always changes?!

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#6 meager

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    mooseknuckle?

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 03:31 PM

Listening now...

Ship, are you feeling under the weather, or is that your normal morning voice? Did you Singstar through the night?

As far as Too Human goes... Those floating fat guys can usually be taken down with 2 - 3 jumping melee finishers. Just charge up there and ignore the horde of zombies underfoot. It helps if you have skill points powering up your finishers or weapons. Have you gone back and played through the game a second time with the same character? The levels change slightly, which is pretty neat. There are Goblins & Elves all through Hel, for instance. And even one the first level there is a maze on one of the bridges that wasn't there before.

#7 Katsu

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 03:31 PM

Note on Facebreaker: I'm also not a huge boxing fan, but Fight Night Round 3 was/is amazing. FB was NOT made by the same team. The FNR3 team was EA Chicago which was unceremoniously disbanded. Having played the FB demo, I can safely say that mrs. ship, you LOSE that bet. FB is crap! Avoid!
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#8 h3llbring3r

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    Mecha Cocksmas 2 all

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 04:17 PM

Good show, I also noticed Ship was really stuffy sounding. Did you change up your mic?

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#9 DJSteel

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 05:09 PM

didn't they mention they were getting a new microphone?
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#10 thorbahn3

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    Everyone talks too much!

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 06:05 PM

The cool part about Castle Crashers is that both you can play on the same console and play online with two other people online like in Bomberman Live and Halo 3. Too bad the online play is drops you out, freezes the screen or might take away all your stuff.
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#11 blackmilk

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 06:13 PM

Thanks for the show. I listen because of your rapport with each other but the interview was interesting because it was a fellow CAG.

#12 ShinAkumA21

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 07:52 PM

is mrs.shipwreack cheating on mr.shipwreack? cause that not his normal voice lol:lol:

#13 shipwreck

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 08:30 PM

That's my morning voice and I was a little congested this morning, so it definitely made me sound off.
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#14 DJSteel

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 08:39 PM

thanks for the mention ship..I didn't know if you saw the post..
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#15 mrs. shipwreck

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    CAG Foreplayer

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 08:41 PM

Katsu - here is where I got the Fight Night thing:
If you go to IGN and scroll down to "about this game" after searching for Facebreaker, here's the description:

"An arcade-styled boxing game developed by EA Canada. Created by the same team that developed the award-winning Fight Night Round 3, FaceBreaker offers irreverent fun, immersive gameplay and stylized graphics. In this in-your-face, arcade world full of ego-wielding characters, each boxer comes to life with unique attributes and distinct personal style, including Romeo, a Latin lover known for his pelvic thrusts, and Molotov, an oversized Russian demolitions expert with a penchant for fighting dirty."

So, you'll have to duke it out with IGN. :-)
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#16 DJSteel

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 08:43 PM

I think when EA Chicago got dismantled, a lot of the developers who did work on Fight Night did in fact relocate to Canada and work on FaceBreaker.. I might be wrong on that...
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#17 FriskyTanuki

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    Get bopped, son.

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 09:05 PM

Note on Facebreaker: I'm also not a huge boxing fan, but Fight Night Round 3 was/is amazing. FB was NOT made by the same team. The FNR3 team was EA Chicago which was unceremoniously disbanded. Having played the FB demo, I can safely say that mrs. ship, you LOSE that bet. FB is crap! Avoid!

EA Canada made the PS3 version of Fight Night Round 3, so they definitely have experience with the series.

#18 JMEPO

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    Drakes Deception

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 09:39 PM

That's my morning voice and I was a little congested this morning, so it definitely made me sound off.


Next show can you talk like Billy Bob Thornton in Sling Blade? Thanks.

#19 johnstca

johnstca

Posted 06 September 2008 - 12:46 AM

Hey Ship,

Just want to add my support for Too Human. I finished it a few days ago as a level 26 Cybernetic Champion. I immediately started through again and am on the second stage and now up to level 33. I plan on playing with other characters once my Champion is level 50. This game is great despite all the criticisms. Certainly not AAA, but hell of a lot of fun IMO.

#20 Chrisness

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Posted 06 September 2008 - 03:03 AM

Yeah I agree Mr. Shipwreck sounds way different.
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#21 FriskyTanuki

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    Get bopped, son.

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Posted 06 September 2008 - 04:59 AM

Just wanted to point out that NFL Head Coach 09 came out this week on PSN, in case you either hadn't heard yet or just didn't mention it on the show since I hadn't listened yet.

Edit: I see that you did.

The game you and Mrs. Shipwreck were getting confused with Clu Clu Land was Balloon Fight.
Spoiler


And you're an asshole, Shipwreck, for not talking to that guy at BB about the fishing game he was buying.
Spoiler


It wasn't that hard to move around in The Last Guy, as you just use the X button to be able to see where people are hidden and see where your paths are. I only had issues with getting caught on edges of buildings, but nothing else after having played through the rest of the game. It's a simple, fleshed-out version of Snake that was surprisingly fun for me. It doesn't technically use Google Maps from what the developers have said, but it does use satellite photos of these cities.

Edited by FriskyTanuki, 06 September 2008 - 06:25 AM.


#22 shinryuu

shinryuu

Posted 06 September 2008 - 04:12 PM

I thought it was interesting hearing you guys preview Head Coach, as you seemed very confused on what the game's basis was, well, at least mrs. shipwreck did. shipwreck kinda touched on it when he mentioned the text-based soccer manager games. =d otherwise, good show!
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#23 Treehouse Gamer

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Posted 07 September 2008 - 10:12 AM

Good show as usual.

I find it hilarious that y'all (I'm assuming Mrs. Shipwreck) censored my Prison Tycoon preview.
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#24 vanilla_shakin_it

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Posted 08 September 2008 - 02:13 AM

I still have a hard time listening to this show, but I will nonetheless. There are much worse out there.

#25 Panther1484

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    Hail to Pitt!

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Posted 08 September 2008 - 03:16 AM

Great show guys. Interesting interview. Nice to see you are growing into a man Ship. :D

I was a little dissappointed to hear you guys not talk about the Wombat Football League in brief. Of course after Mrs. Ship beats me this week, you can skip it all together this week... ;)

Damn you Tom Brady!

#26 shipwreck

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Posted 08 September 2008 - 03:32 AM

I still have a hard time listening to this show, but I will nonetheless. There are much worse out there.


Sounds like a great opening stanza for a CAG Foreplay theme song. Somebody get on that.
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#27 JadedJedi

JadedJedi

Posted 08 September 2008 - 02:01 PM

At last, Shipwreck has revealed his ambition to overthrow CheapyD! Now someone turn that into an RTS game.
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#28 LiK

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    Internet Superstar

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Posted 08 September 2008 - 03:06 PM

Shippy, good to know what's going on with the CAG game database. Cheapy hasn't been very good at letting us know what's going with it.

The whole interview thing was kinda weird since it's from Foreplay which was unexpected. I thought Cheapy had the scoops. Good interview though.

btw, mrs. shippy sounds much more chipper in the morning and less cranky, imo. :D
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#29 shipwreck

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Posted 08 September 2008 - 09:36 PM

At last, Shipwreck has revealed his ambition to overthrow CheapyD! Now someone turn that into an RTS game.


Please no, I can't come up with anything interesting to write about those anymore... ;)
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#30 Link927

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    Work In Progress

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 12:29 AM

Finally catching up, another great episode. Very interested in the 360 rpg reviews, I do enjoy turn based slightly more than real time, but I still picked up ToV. Its ood though, since I was originally intending to buy IU before ToV, but it just slipped to the back burner.

Nothing to see here, move along!