Welcome to Heads-up, VideoGamer.com's weekly feature which gives you an at-a-glance run-down on the games you'll be able to buy or rent this weekend. Every Tuesday we'll pick out the best of the bunch, link to our reviews and previews and keep you in the video game loop so you have enough time to pre-order for Friday's post. Time to splash the cash.
Recommended: The Beatles: Rock Band - Xbox 360, PS3 and Wii
We were sceptical when it was announced, but Harmonix has delivered the goods and then some with The Beatles: Rock Band. Even if you don't think you're a big Beatles fan there are tracks here that you'll know and love. Proper fans will be in music game heaven, though, with a superb track list, incredible production values and some brilliant unlockable extras. We love Guitar Hero, but we probably like this lovingly created effort a tiny bit more.
Recommended: Colin McRae: DIRT 2 - Xbox 360, PS3, Wii, DS and PSP
Sandwiched between the two music game juggernauts is Codemasters' stunning off-road racer. We've never played a sleeker game, and with a driving model that treads that fine line between sim and arcade racer, DIRT 2 delivers racing thrills for just about everyone. In a year that is chock-a-block with high profile racing games DIRT 2 proudly pulled onto the starting grid first and is going to take some beating.
Recommended: Guitar Hero 5: Xbox 360, PS3, Wii, and PS2
If you like music it's hard not to like Guitar Hero. While on the surface 5 might not seem like a radical departure from before, you're now able to play whatever instrument you want no matter what your friends are doing. If you all want to play drums or guitar you can, and there are a tonne of new multiplayer modes that make for improved party play. Fans will be playing this for months and months.
Worth a look
These three might struggle to compete with the blockbuster titles above, but each should find an audience in this crowded release window. Championship Manager 2010 is looking like the best version of the game in years, Mini Ninjas has a cute charm (and is from the makers of Hitman), and Section 8 delivers extremely solid online multiplayer FPS action.
Championship Manager 2010 - PC
Mini Ninjas - Xbox 360, PS3, PC, Wii and DS
Section 8 - Xbox 360 and PC
And the rest...
AGEOD Strategy Collection: Battles of 1750-1865 - PC
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs - DS, PS3, Xbox 360, Wii and PSP
Mary King's Riding School 2 - Wii