Microsoft have fired us over a press release to tell us about the contents of their upcoming House Party promotion (Block Party in North America). This is their normal seasonal promotion which sees them release a series of games that they put a bit of extra marketing muscles behind.
The same promotion last year brought us Game Room, which ended up being a bit of a disaster, and Toy Soldiers which was pretty good. Let’s hope this year’s batch are all quality.
Here’s the run down, along with the PR spiel that comes through:
16th February – Hard Corps: Uprising – 1200MSP
Thrilling retro run-and-gun action is back with a vengeance in “Hard Corps: Uprising” on Xbox LIVE, a new 2D side scroller developed by ARC System Works that pays homage to the classic Konami action series. Play as the soldier Bahamut as he begins to write his legend in this prequel to “Contra: Hard Corps.”
23rd February – Bejewelled Blitz Live – 800MSP
Take on friends in the brilliant gem-matching action of Bejeweled® Blitz Live! Choose your favourite playing style – Classic or Twist – and rocket up the leaderboards! Battle your way to the top in the all-new 16-player Party mode over Xbox LIVE.
2nd March – Beyond Good & Evil HD – 800MSP
Now you can experience the thrill of the fan-favourite “Beyond Good & Evil HD®” on Xbox LIVE in full HD. Enter the futuristic world of year 2435, a world full of deception, where nothing is as it seems and exposing the truth is the only hope of restoring freedom. Play as action-reporter Jade and capture the truth using stealth, force, and wit against a government that deceived you in this action-adventure game with elements of puzzle-solving and stealth-based games.
9th March – Torchlight – 1200MSP
A highly-regarded PC game with over 800,000 units sold to date, “Torchlight” is now coming to Xbox LIVE! Combat is more exciting with revamped controls and mechanics, new armour and quests! There’s even an exclusive new pet for your character. Send a select goodie or two to your friends on Xbox LIVE to share the fun for the first time.
16th March – Full House Poker – 800MSP
Bet your way to fame by playing “Texas Hold ’Em” anytime, anywhere in “Full House Poker.” Compete against your Xbox LIVE friends on Xbox 360 and build your bank roll on the go with a companion game on Windows Phone 7. Play a quick two-player game for some lightning action, join a big 30-player tournament, or play a round of Texas Heat, our live poker game show where you play with thousands of players worldwide and have 30 minutes to bluff, bet, and raise your way to the final table!
So there you have it, the obvious highlights are Torchlight, a dungeon crawler that garnered some critical acclaim after its PC release in 2009 and Beyond Good & Evil HD, a remake of a classic action puzzler. We’ve been advised to point out that all prices and dates are subject to change, should any last minute problems arise.