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Nintendo and Sony roll out big titles
|15 ноября 2007|
Two new video games from Sony and Nintendo have players exploring jungle islands for lost treasure or skipping across the galaxy to save a kidnapped princess.On the face of it, Sony's "Uncharted" and Nintendo's "Super Mario Galaxy" can't be more different.
"Uncharted" harnesses the PlayStation 3's graphical muscle to produce a movie-like adventure, while "Super Mario Galaxy" for the Wii uses cartoonish graphics and simple controls to breathe new life into an aging franchise.
The games also answer challenges facing Sony and Nintendo.
Although Nintendo has been selling as may machines as it can make, players have started to grumble about the lack of must-have titles that offer a more rewarding experience than short mini-games.
That's where "Super Mario Galaxy" comes in.
A product of Nintendo's legendary game designer Shigeru Miyamoto, "Super Mario Galaxy" is being hailed as the most innovative and fun Mario adventure in more than a decade.
The portly Italian plumber once again has to save Princess Peach from the clutches of the evil Bowser, and this time his path hops across an amazing variety of planetoids.
Add in dizzying perspectives, weird gravity effects, and finely-honed motion controls, and you end up with a game that has scored 97 out of 100 on Metacritic.com and is expected to sell 16 million copies worldwide, according to online prediction market simExchange.com.
"It definitely captures the essence of what makes Mario so great," said Jeremy Parish, features editor at gaming news Web site 1up.com, which scored the game a 9.5 out of 10."Some hard-core gamers might be turned off by how cutesy this is, but if you look beyond that, the gameplay is rock-solid, it's incredibly new and inventive," Parish said.
For Sony, "Uncharted" is the kind of showcase game it sorely needs to drive sales of the PS3, which has languished behind the Wii and Microsoft's Xbox 360.
"Uncharted: Drake's Fortune" puts players on the trail of a hidden treasure of Sir Francis Drake, the 16th century English privateer. It is set in the modern day but crafted in the style of classic adventure movies -- think Indiana Jones meets "Tomb Raider" meets "Lost".
Its lush jungle settings and mix of brawling, shooting and exploration set it apart from other popular games this year that feature heavy military or alien-invasion themes.
"There are lots of sci-fi games that are very dark and brown and grey and sort of post-apocalyptic. We wanted to do something more lush and green and vibrant," said Evan Wells, co-president of Naughty Dog, the Sony studio known for cartoony games like "Crash Bandicoot" and "Jak and Daxter".
"The goal was to create this pulp action adventure and make it very cinematic and make it feel like playing the lead role of a hero in a summer blockbuster," Wells said.
"Uncharted" has an average rating of 89 on Metacritic.com, the highest of any exclusive game for the system along with "Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction", which came out last month.
"It is another solid addition to the library and I'm sure that for some folks that is something that would push them to buy a console this holiday," said Billy Pidgeon, games analyst for market research firm IDC.
"Super Mario Galaxy" was released in the United States on November 12 while "Uncharted" comes out November 19.
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