A slow little week segues into something with a bit more impact, although the difference between four games and six may not be all that apparent at first glance. Chalk it up to all those multi-console releases making the shelves look that much fuller.
Small as the weeks are, there's some good content in them overall. Killer 7 melds style and gameplay together to try something new, while Flipnic is a complete reinvention of that classic standby, pinball. Pirates returns to consoles after being gone for over a decade, while the annual ritual of football arrives like clockwork. We even get one game from a movie and one from anime, although how much enjoyment one takes from that probably depends on how well one tolerates the sheer mediocrity most media-based gaming brings.
Week of July 4 - July 9
Tuesday, July 5
Halo 2 Multiplayer Map Pack (Xbox)
Multiplayer Halo 2 goodies.
Wednesday, July 6
Killer 7 (PS2, Gamecube)
Seven personalities inside one head in a stylized on-rails shooter for the insane.
Coded Arms (PSP)
The first FPS on the PSP, set in a virtual reality military environment.
Thursday, July 8
Echo: Secrets of the Lost Caverns (PC)
Caveman adventure gaming.
Week of July 11 - July 16
Tuesday, July 12
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (PS2, GC, Xbox, GBA, PC)
Yet more movie-based gaming product.
NCAA Football 2006 (PS2, Xbox)
The football season apparently starts in early July, at least for the college crowd.
Sid Meier's Pirates (Xbox)
The modern-day update of the PC/Genesis classic comes to Xbox. Classic "sandbox" gaming with pirates.
Wednesday, July 13
Flatout (PS2, Xbox, PC)
Redneck racing combined with hysterically funny driver-launching mini-games.
Fullmetal Alchemist 2: Curse of the Crimson Elixir (PS2)
Final Fight meets RPG in anime-based gaming.
Thursday, July 14
Video pinball taking full advantage of everything the break from reality affords. "A drop of silver approaches..."