This week in games isn’t big on popular titles unless Hannah Montana is considered popular (it isn’t), but please don’t get discouraged. Videogame buyers can look forward to games ranging from a mainstream hit movie to a rhythm based portable. Throw in some action via a healthy dose of ninja stars, and you’ve got yourself the second week of April.
Hannah Montana: The Movie (360, PS3, PC, Wii, DS) (April 7th)
Disney has this allure where they can market basically anything successfully with Hannah Montana (HM) being their latest sensation. HM follows the story of “Hannah Montana: The Movie”. Game play in HM can be likened to typical carnival games with the occasional Frog Toss, Milk Jug Topple, etc. with some rhythm-based games thrown in. This game is sure to appeal to plenty of the younger audience and fans of the series because of such a strong niche following. Outsiders might want to check out the television show and/or movie before delving into the series. This will hit stores on Tuesday for $49.99 on the PS3, 360, and Wii, $29.99 on the DS, and $19.99 on the PC. In the Wii version, players can fix up Hannah’s hair with the Wiimote (recommended for the meticulous-types), while “Rock Band” instruments can be used in PS3 and 360 versions (not required).
Rhythm Heaven (Nintendo DS) (April 5th)
Tap! Flick! Hold! Slide! Feel the rhythm! Feel the beat! Can you feel it? That’s “Rhythm Heaven” (RH) in a nutshell which will coincide with the release of the Nintendo DSi (the third generation DS), but a DSi is not needed to play RH. Rhythm-based video games have seen an increase in popularity with such releases as “Elite Beat Agents” and “Guitar Hero” doing so well. Central to the game play in RH is the tapping, flicking, holding, and/or sliding of the stylus in conjunction with the background music. The mini-games range from building robots to music class. RH looks to be fun for anyone who picks it up with a simple learning curve. To the people wanting to try RH, a demo is available on the “Nintendo Channel” for the Wii. You can dance your way to the store on Sunday to pick up a copy for $34.99.
Ninja Blade (360) (April 7th)
Get your ninja stars and swords ready for this action/adventure from “From Software”. Upon first glance, “Ninja Blade” (NB) screams “Ninja Gaiden” clone with its stunning in-game graphics, frenetic game play, and gorgeous cut scenes. The voice acting in NB seems to be a little forced as well, but who cares what the characters are saying when you can kill everything (I care, but killing everything is fun, too)? If you’re looking for sword slashing and ninja throwing again, this could be the game for you again. If one is skeptical about purchasing NB, a demo is available on the “Xbox Marketplace”, which should provide a substantial enough guide to buy, rent, or not buy. Ninjas in-training can purchase this on Tuesday only on the 360 for $59.99.