Hot Shots Tennis | July 17 | Summary | Preview
Not content to merely take on just one sport for seniors, the Hot Shots series is back to pump some piss and vinegar into the time-honored game of tennis. Treading a pitch-perfect line between simulation and arcade absurdity, Hot Shots Tennis offers a deep game of traditional ball-whackage, in addition to some otherwordly thrills featuring a cutesy and diverse cast. As always, Hot Shots is better in pairs, and you and up to four buddies can hook up for a violent exchange of racqueteering.
Manhunt 2 | July 9 | Summary | Preview
Where will you be when the heads of busybody watchdog groups everywhere simultaneously explode over the next bout of manhunting? Perhaps the biggest shock is that Manhunt 2 goes far above and beyond the gory standards of its gruesome predecessor. Rockstar's stealth-horror game contains just about everything aspiring sociopaths could ask for, from point-blank shotgun sprays to the oft-overlooked skill of (shudder) testicle-gouging. You can bet that we'll be there to run barefoot through the warm, syrupy gore, but this is definitely one game we'll be hiding from our parents.
Buzz! The Mega Quiz | Fall | Summary | Screens
After doing decent business in Europe for some time, the Buzz! games are heading stateside. Game-show games are traditionally bottom-of-the-barrel stuff, but after going a full round with Buzz!, we're convinced this eight-player trivia-fest has the potential to rival Guitar Hero as a quick-hit party game. The Mega Quiz sports 5,000 questions in a variety of categories and round types, but what may be its biggest selling point are the four simple buzzer controllers that come packed with the game. Don't expect to have much fun with this by yourself, but if you've got some friends coming over, Buzz! looks poised to be a good time.
Buzz Jr. Jungle Party | Fall | Summary | Screens
If the crowd coming over is too young to get Buzz!'s questions, you might want to consider Jungle Party instead. Up to four players can customize a monkey avatar and compete in a random series of minigames (picked from a total pool of 25) that range from throwing fruit at an ape (hit the buzzer when your cursor's over the target) to putting your head in a lion's mouth (slap the buzzer when you think he's about to snap his jaws shut). Like any collection of minigames, this was moderately fun when we tackled it with a few other players - just don't expect to get marathon play sessions out of it.