The spring thaw has begun, and with that, video game publishers make their annual pilgrimages out to the East Coast to show off the latest builds of upcoming games. We got a chance to get hands-on with several high-profile titles (and some fairly obscure ones) that are sure to eat up many hours of your leisure time later this year.
John Woo's Stranglehold, from Midway, is a buzz-heavy game, bringing together the talents of not just the famed Hong Kong director, but also his action star muse Chow Yun-Fat. It's full of HK-style slow-motion gunfights and is reminiscent, in a good way, of the cult hit action game, Max Payne. The game is coming out for Xbox 360, PC, and PS3 sometime in the second half of 2007.
Unreal Tournament, also from Midway, is a multiplayer series historically responsible for eating up many hours of productivity in offices around the country. The most recent installments have fallen off the map somewhat, but after playing a few rounds of capture the flag in the upcoming Unreal Tournament III, we could see this catching on as the new workplace time-waster. We liked the updated graphics and weapons--although the game relied a little too heavily on vehicles, instead of traditional first-person-shooter tactics. UT3 hits PC and Xbox 360 later in 2007.
We've previously nominated Earth Defense Force 2017 as the most disturbing video game ever, on account of its man-vs.-giant-bugs scenario. There might be a new contender for the top spot now that we've played Escape from Bug Island. The whimsical title almost sounds like a kid game, but this is far from it. Instead, it's a Resident Evil-style horror game for the Wii, pitting the world's most unlucky tourist against an island of killer bugs of all shapes and sizes. Something has definitely been lost in the translation, but it could be campy fun if you're not too creeped out. This Japanese import should be out for the Wii sometime this spring.