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Calendar Man – Week of 11/12

Welcome to the beginning of the end of Holiday Gaming Season 2012. This week Black Ops 2 comes out, followed by the Wii U on Sunday and then, well, nothing but a long winter’s nap until January when Ni No Kuni comes out and children of the world raise their voices in glee.

This week we also have LEGO: Lord of the Rings, Paper Mario: Sticker Star, Sony’s latest attempt to get people to buy Move, the first expansion to Rift and some other games that will no doubt get drowned out by the COD juggernaut.

New Releases

Call of Duty: Black Ops II (PC, PS3, 360) looked pretty damn cool when I saw it at E3. Granted, they all may look cool at E3. I have no idea, this being the first time I was allowed behind closed doors at Activision’s booth. I’d like to play the game, but I’m pretty sure waiting for it to become available via GameFly will be an exercise in unerring patience. Oh well. I have survived a Call of Duty free existence since COD 2 launched with the Xbox 360. If I end up waiting six months to play this one, I think I’ll manage. Oh, there’s a Vita game too. That one is winging its way to me as we speak.

I love me some Paper Mario, but from what I’ve read, Paper Mario: Sticker Star can be pretty dang difficult. Yeah, I got no time for that foolishness. I can barely manage Layton on a good night and that game has hints.

RIFT: Storm Legion brings two new continents, a raised level cap, seven new dungeons and three raids. Imagine if two new continents simply appeared in our fair world. Were that to happen, I’m fairly certain that figuring out when I’m going to play Black Ops II would be the least of my problems.

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While we’re on the subject of expansions, Crusader Kings II gets the Sunset Invasion release this week, showing the world what would happen if Aztecs invaded Europe. One thing’s for certain, the food probably would have gotten a lot better. Hey-o!

Wonderbook: Book of Spells may end up being a good game, or interactive storytelling thing, or whatever, but it doesn’t change the fact that Sony’s Move pretty much sucks. It doesn’t help that Sony seems to care about it as much as the rest of the gaming world, which is to say, very, very little.

Tropico 4: Gold Edition (360, PC) contains both the original Tropico 4 campaign as well as the Modern Times campaign. For forty bucks, that’s a lot of Tropico.

LEGO: Lord of the Rings (360, Wii, PS3, PC) already had a release on handhelds, so now it’s time for the big consoles to get their time in Middle Earth. So far, I’ve been less than impressed with the physical sets, but the addition of a little fish for Gollum to eat is a nice touch.

Finally, The Sims 3 gets a seasons expansion pack and F1 Race Stars (PS3, 360) brings arcade F1 racing to racing starved households everywhere.


Toys R Us – Save $10 when buying one game priced $59.99 or above, save $30 when buying two. Buy one, get one at 40% off on all 3DS, DS, Wii or Wii U games priced $49.99 or below. Get a free $20 gift card with purchase of a 3DS/3DS XL and a $10 gift card with purchase of a Wii.

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Target – Get a $10 gift card with purchase of Xbox 360 4GB. Get a free $10 gift card with purchase of a 3DS. Buy one game, get one at 50% off on a bunch of games. See store for details but the ad showed Just Dance 4 and Kingdom Hearts for the 3DS, as well a bunch of Sims 3 games.

Best Buy – Buy Black Ops II and save $20 on a 12 month Gold subscription as well as get 800 Live points free. Buy two of the following 3DS games, get one free: FIFA Soccer 13, Angry Birds Trilogy, Paper Mario: Sticker Star, Wreck It Ralph, Rayman Origins, The Trash Pack, New Super Mario Bros. 2, Mario Kart 7.


Brandon loves games, which shouldn't be a surprise given where you're reading this. He has written for GameShark, The Escapist and G4, and made them all less relevant as a result.

14 thoughts to “Calendar Man – Week of 11/12”

  1. Re: Ni no Kuni- Speaking as an adult man with a tattoo of Kiki and Gigi, all I can say is tee hee!

    Thought I was going to skip CODBLOPS2, but it just wouldn’t be Thanksgiving time without a new COD. I doubt it’ll unseat Halo 4 as my manshoot of choice, but I’ll give it a chance. Pick 10 is a brilliant idea.

    I am getting a Wii U. Looks like NSMBWU and ZombiU are the choice picks. The latter looks pretty compelling despite its worn out subject matter.

  2. Paper Mario is already in my possession, so that’s me sorted.

    Continuing to not bother with CoD.

    My big plan is to wrap up Dishonored and Layton this week, then grab Halo 4.

    Then hibernate until the new year, playing my backlog (surprising assortment of 3DS goodies, which is a welcome change). Will think about caving on the WiiU at a later date.

  3. With the steam winter sell around the corner im going to hold off on any purchases till then. And from what I can see the only game I really want on it is sleeping dogs. I skipped one COD and it looks like im going to do that again.

    Also does anyone feel that the WiiU is going to burn and crash. I certainly do.

    1. I think you’re going to be surprised. As long as it’s the only system where you can play Mario, Zelda, Metroid, Pikmin, and so forth it is going to sell. I don’t think it’ll be another Wii phenomena, however.

      Now, I am still VERY wary that third party developers are going to do ANYTHING with the tablet…developing for that thing costs money, and if PS3/360 ports are going to just have some kind of dumb tacked-on usage for it, that could be a problem. I picked ZombiU out of the launch line-up because it’s one of the only ORIGINAL games designed specifically for the console. I think it’ll be a much better gauge of what it can do than say, Assassin’s Creed 3.

      1. This.

        Even the GameCube justified its existence eventually.

        Which is a bit of an overstatement as it is probably my favorite console ever, but it also had the best survival horror games. Just nobody else really seemed to appreciate it.

      2. I’m sincerely looking forward to the day when the WiiU will have some combination of a Mario Galaxy, Mario RPG, Zelda, Metroid Prime, and perhaps a Super Smash Brothers lineup I can pick up with the system. And wouldn’t a real, full-fledged Pokemon game be great?

        Nintendo still has the best first and second-party franchises in the industry. It’ll just take a while for the backlog to justify the cost of a new console.

        I can’t wait to hear what Barnes thinks of ZombiU, though! I’m predicting a complete Michaelocalypse, a word which will henceforth be defined by whatever his reaction to ZombiU turns out to be.

  4. Brandon I don’t get your joke about Aztecs improving the food in Europe. Being from the Netherlands myself and having lived in the States, I think the food is quite good. In fact, unless you have tried bitterballen, stroopwafels, poffertjes, vlaai, sauzijsbroodjes, dropjes, speculaas, and Dutch fries with mayonaise, you can’t talk about whether American pizza, hamburgers, biscuits, cinnamon roles, or whatever else is different or better than other county’s food. Maybe you’ve only eaten in Germany in Essen or Cologne and that’s why you think the food is weird. I can see how that would happen because German food is pretty weird sometimes.

    1. Dutch fries with mayonnaise…Brandon’s case is CLOSED. That is an abominiation before the eyes of god and all that is holy. The only thing mayonnaise should be put on is a rocket ship headed straight for the sun.

      1. I’ll have you both know that I am heir to the throne of the Netherlands and fries with mayo is proof of a kind and loving god.

        Yorioto, I never shy down from making cheap, uninformed jokes. ??

      2. Please, just all the American mayo, that shit is an abomination upon the ass of the unholy monkeys of any pantheon. Not that I’d put any mayo on fries, that sounds like a terrible idea from start to unholy finish, but real mayo and a dash of lemon on a pile of fresh shrimp/crab/lobster (preferably all three) and some freshly baked bread is a thing of beauty.

    2. Hold on! Do not disparage the name of Pizza by calling it American Pizza, there is one true Pizza and that is Chicago style. As for other foods, well most truly American food would qualify as either junk food, or fast food.

      That said I would support Brandon’s statement if he had limited it to British foods. Throwing all Europe out there, nope. Europe may not have the powerhouse that is Mexican food, but it has the heavyweights of Italy, Greece, and pretty much all of the Mediterranean.

      My wife is Dutch, and so I am fairly familiar with your cuisine, sorry you may fare well in baked goods, but not so well on meals.

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