TMR’s 2007 Holiday Shopping Guide: Xbox 360, PS3, Wii

Ho Ho Ho, TMR faithful. A couple days ago we unveiled our top holiday picks for HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc software. To complete our guide on this Black Friday, below are the games you’re most likely to find spinning in our Xbox 360, Playstation 3 or Nintendo Wii.

Xbox 360

Mass Effect

Where famed developer BioWare goes, we follow. As advertised, Mass Effect is a massive and immensely deep sci-fi story that plays in an elite league with Bethesda’s The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. Forget the uninspired Halo clone, Halo 3; Mass Effect delivers a new cinematic gaming experience and the twists and turns that famous established franchise failed to.

Shop for Mass Effect (Xbox 360) at

Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare

Infinity Ward emerges from a multi-year development effort with the first Call of Duty game to leave World War II, and by far the most immersive and compelling entry in the entire series. Whether playing campaign or moving up the ranks in multiplayer, this first-person shooter is one of the best war-themed games ever released.

Shop for Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (Xbox 360) at

Rock Band

The evolution of Guitar Hero into Rock Band was only a matter of time. If you’ve seen the size of the box then you know this game is a major league commitment. Xbox Live is a necessity to take advantage of all four band spots: lead guitar, bass guitar, vocals, and drums. You have to love the sweet drum kit.

Shop for Rock Band (Xbox 360) at

Honorable Mention: Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga

Playstation 3

Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune

Step aside, Indiana Jones. Well, at least until next summer. For now, Sony’s adventurer Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune has put Tomb Raider to shame with strong graphics, a compelling story, and surprisingly fun and diverse exploratory gameplay. There’s no better Playstation 3 exclusive, period.

Shop for Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune (PS3) at

Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock

Rock Band may be the “bigger” game, but Guitar Hero III has a distinct advantage: a wireless guitar controller. The black Kramer Striker guitar looks great with the black Playstation 3 console, and online play via the Playstation Network is extends the longevity beyond the relatively short career mode. It also costs a third of what the Rock Band special edition package runs.

Shop for Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock (PS3) at

Assassin’s Creed

How is it possible that a game looks this good? Ubisoft is behind it, that’s why. Jumping around on rooftops and strategically planning out stealth assassinations is a novel concept, but it can become a tad repetitive after awhile. That’s no reason not to snatch this one immediately. Don’t look now, but it may actually run better on Playstation 3 than Xbox 360. A grand new franchise is born.

Shop for Assassin’s Creed (PS3) at

Honorable Mention: Heavenly Sword

Nintendo Wii

Super Mario Galaxy

Can you remember what the last true Mario console game was? It’s been so long that I had to think for a few moments. Combining a new Mario and Wii’s motion controls is not only marketing genius, but Nintendo gameplay genius as well. Controlling Mario has never felt more natural, and because of this amazing game, it’s hard to imagine where the franchise can possibly go next.

Shop for Super Mario Galaxy (Wii) at

Wii Zapper/Resident Evil Umbrella Chronicles

Beating the dead crap out of zombies in Resident Evil games has always been fun, but with the new $19.99 Wii Zapper, it takes on a whole new arcade on-rails experience. Light gun-inspired games may be a dieing breed, but in this age of high-def graphics and fancy Wii Remote controls, a little old-fashioned trigger action set in the spooky Resident Evil world is a welcome diversion.

Shop for Wii Zapper/Resident Evil Umbrella Chronicles at

Carnival Games

Step right up and try out this Wii party game many of you might not even know exists. Wii Sports and Wii Play may be the better sellers, but this Global-Star Software developed game released in August packs far more punch with over 25 mini-games, realistic physics, and the biggest collection of useless kiddie bling this side of Richie Rich. Make sure to have a friend handy because competitive play is far more engaging than single-player.

Shop for Carnival Games (Wii) at

Honorable Mention: Metroid Prime 3: Corruption

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