March Madness; PS3 Attitude Big Three
As a quick reminder, the PS3 Attitude Big Three takes in UK and European release dates only and is for titles that will be released in March.
You can keep tabs on the latest release dates by using the PS3 Attitude PlayStation 3 Events Calendar, which you'll also find a shareable/embeddable version in the left sidebar.
So let's get started - what should you spend your money on this month?
1. Army of Two [pre-order] [pre-rent]
The first couple of levels in this buddy-em-up shooter will help you learn about everything at your disposal, and you're going to need it. The gameplay mechanics and commands available are surprisingly complex, but in this case that is a good thing.
In Army of Two you play as one of two mercenaries - Salem or Rios. If you play the game in single-player mode your teammate will be controlled by the PS3. If you command your teammate to be the centre of attention by firing at anything that moves, the enemy are less likely to spot you which allows you to flank round the side and take out the opposition.
But it's the co-operative set pieces that impress the most. Early on in the game you'll get to grab a ripped-off car door and use it as a shield whilst your partner fires over your shoulder. You'll also get involved in tandem parachute/sniping exploits and you'll have to learn how to heal your compatriot when he goes down, even helping stop bloodflow with a tampon.
The multiplayer experience is great fun too. Army of Two could be one of the sleeper hits of the year.
2. Gran Turismo 5: Prologue [pre-order]
The debate about whether this is a full game or a demo of a forthcoming game still rages on. I'll tell you where we stand: GT5: Prologue is a completely full game in it's own right.
Available around 28th March in retail disc, PS Store download and special European PS3 Bundle Pack versions, GT5: Prologue has everything a Gran Turismo fan is looking for and more. Lots of cars (40 to choose from and earn), 10 track configurations from five tracks and some 'firsts' for the GT franchise such as in-car view with full dashboards.
But the most important 'first' - online racing. 16 drivers going head-to-head around some of the most beautifully rendered race tracks you're ever likely to see.
Add to that a whole slew of 'net features such as GT-TV, realtime weather conditions for major tracks around the world and the chat functionality from the My Garage page and you have a full-blown, bone-fide release on your hands. No question about it.
3. Everybody's Golf World Tour [pre-order]
With the usual confusing mix of FPS titles available in March (Blacksite, Soldier of Fortune, Turning Point etc.) it's nice to feature something cuter and cuddlier in the Big Three. The latest Everybody's Golf title (known as Hot Shots Golf elsewhere) arrives on the PS3 this month to a shower of daytime fireworks and giddy cartoon caddies, who are only happiest when they're sprinting after your ball like a Duracell/Energiser bunny on acid.
With a new swing mode that does take a little bit of getting used to, Everybody's Golf is the anti-Tiger - immediately accesible with the emphasis on fun and laughs. But don't be fooled - there's as much of a golf simulator here as you'll find in many an EA game if you want to really get into it.
For those that find the new swing mechanism too far from the immediate 'plug-in-and-play' joy that makes the series truly Everybody's Golf, you can flip back to the familiar 'three-click' system that golf game officianados will have probably first experienced when they played Access' brilliant Leader Board on the C64 back in the 80's.
The online multiplayer is great fun and the lobby looks like a mix of a cut down version of Home mixed and the little Mii avatars from Nintendo's online service. The whole social side of the online experience is almost worth your time and money by itself. And when you do get a game going, everyone plays the hole at the same time - it's just fun to see a whole rain of golf balls flying across the course!
You can check out video trailers for all three titles below. Have a great March!
[Hot Shots/Everybody's Golf trailer via IGN]