Chainsaw bayonets, the Mojave Desert and basketball

“Gears of War 3″ is today’s biggest new release, and other notables include “Lonesome Road,” the final storyline-based DLC for Fallout: New Vegas and 2K Sports’ demo for NBA 2K12.

By all appearances, Epic Games’ conclusion to its Gears of War saga follows its predecessors tradition of chainsaw-bayonets, cover-based tactics and hulking characters. Some people say Gears of War can be too much on the “dudebro” side of things, and although they have a small point, Epic Games deserves a lot of credit for pioneering the cover -based mechanics that are pretty much standard in any game featuring a third-person perspective.

In my opinion, no one has done it quite as well since. I also got a kick out of the developer’s introduction in the original’s manual, which explained how a game of paintball led to a new approach to gameplay.

Gears of War 3 is an XBox 360 exclusive.



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Trailer released for Fallout: New Vegas: Old World Blues

Old World Blues, the third DLC episode for Fallout: New Vegas takes the post-apocalyptic game to a place of disembodied minds and really weird science, based on this trailer.

I can’t embed the trailer because it’s M-rated and our blogging software won’t let us put the madness behind an age gate. If you’re old enough, click the link to see hints of a story that has something to do with people whose minds have been downloaded into robots with big television screens for eyes, robo-scorpions and many, many large weapons.

Old World Blues is scheduled for a July 19 release for PlayStation Network, Steam and XBox Live.

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New trailers: L.A. Noire and Honest Hearts

New trailers are out today for “L.A. Noire” and “Honest Hearts,” the next DLC episode for Fallout: New Vegas.

I’m not supposed to embed trailers for Mature-rated games without age gates, so links to follow.

L.A. Noire, from Rockstar Games and Team Bondi, is scheduled to be released May 16 for PlayStation 3 and XBox 360. If you’re reading this, you probably already know the game tells the story of an LAPD detective in 1947 Los Angeles and features highly-touted facial animations. The idea is to let players figure out if suspects and witnesses are telling the truth, and this writer looks forward to seeing how well it works in practice.

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“Honest Hearts” places Fallout: New Vegas players in a post-apocalyptic Zion Canyon, Utah. I have to admit that I’ve barely made a dent in New Vegas, but Utah is an amazingly beautiful state. The DLC is set for a May 17 release for PC, PlayStation 3* and XBox 360 players.

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*This assumes PlayStation Network is back online by then. Sony has not announced a date as of this posting.

The fun side of nuclear war: Bethesda reveals Fallout: New Vegas DLC

The first “Fallout: New Vegas'” next three DLC packs will be released May 17, Bethesda Softworks reported today.

The new episodes follow December’s release of “Dead Money” for XBox Live players and remind this writer that he has not even finished all of Fallout 3’s DLC. (I’ll get into that spaceship someday.)

Fallout fans may remember (perhaps bitterly, if they play on PC or PlayStation 3) that “Dead Money” was a timed exclusive for Xbox and did not arrive on other platforms until late February. There’s no such arrangement this time, so all players who want to give Bethesda their money for more Fallout action can give Bethesda their money at the same time.

Here are descriptions of each episode from Bethesda’s press release:

on May 17, “Honest Hearts” takes you on an expedition to the
unspoiled wilderness of Utah’s Zion National Park. Things go horribly wrong
when your caravan is ambushed by a tribal raiding band. As you try to find a
way back to the Mojave, you become embroiled in a war between tribes and a
conflict between a New Canaanite missionary and the mysterious Burned Man. The
decisions you make will determine the fate of Zion.


Old World Blues
, releasing in June, you will discover how
some of the Mojave’s mutated monsters came to be when you unwittingly
become a lab rat in a science experiment gone awry. You’ll need to scour
the Pre-War research centers of the Big Empty in search of technology to turn
the tables on your kidnappers or join forces with them against an even greater


available in July, brings the courier’s story full circle when you are
contacted by the original Courier Six, a man by the name of Ulysses who refused
to deliver the Platinum Chip at the start of New Vegas. In his transmission,
Ulysses promises the answer as to why, but only if you take one last job
-a job that leads you into the depths of the hurricane-swept canyons of
the Divide, a landscape torn apart by earthquakes and violent storms. The road
to the Divide is a long and treacherous one, and of the few to ever walk the
road, none have ever returned.

Each DLC episode will be sold for $9.99 American or 800 Microsoft Points, for those doing business in the Republic of XBox Live.

Obsidian Entertainment developed the New Vegas games for Bethesda.

“Dead Money” gets release date for PC, PS3

“Dead Money,” the first DLC release for “Fallout: New Vegas” is scheduled to be released PC and PlayStation 3 on Feb. 22, Bethesda Softworks announced.

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XBox 360 players got first crack at Dead Money way back on Dec. 22. Bethesda reports that they will release three additional New Vegas expansions within the next few months with simultaneous release dates for all three platforms.