Capcom’s early 2009 line-up

Who said the first half of the year was ever dead for games? Not Capcom, as Resident Evil 5 and Street Fighter 4 lead the charge…

Resident Evil 5

You know the old ruse by now. Games publishers have a habit of backending their schedules to ensure that the big games all arrive around Christmastime, theoretically maximising revenues and all that sort of stuff. Of course, the risk is that your big expensive title gets trampled in the crush. But then last year, Rockstar proved that a big game can sell at any time of the year, as Grand Theft Auto IV moved to a release date in the first six months of 2008, and promptly sold bucketloads.

Capcom, then, is one of a slowly increasing band of publishers willing to put major titles early on the calendar, and in announcing its line up for the first half of 2009, it’s already inked in two of the most anticipated games of the year.

The first of these, Street Fighter IV, will initially be coming to Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, with a PC version to follow. The console editions are out on February 20th. The week after, the Wii take on the zombie franchise Dead Rising arrives. Entitled Dead Rising Chop Till You Drop, you now use your Wiimote to attack zombies en masse. This sounds like a good thing.

Perhaps the biggie though is Resident Evil 5, which will be out on Friday 13th (see what they did?) March, on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Co-op play is the big addition, and given just how marvellous RE4 was, it’s fair to say that there’s some degree of anticipation in place for this one.

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Fitting in the schedules too are Flock (a downloadable game for PS3, Xbox 360 and PC) which is arriving in February, Neopets Puzzle Adventure on Wii, DS and PC (it’s a Nickelodeon thing), MotoGP on the Wii in March and then the full-on Bionic Commando sequel. That’s initially heading for 360 and PS3, with the PC version to follow.

Of that lot, we still adore the old version of Bionic Commando, so look forward to the new one. Dead Rising should be a hoot. And RE5 and SF4 are inked firmly onto our shopping list.


8 January 2009