It's Official: Ikaruga Hitting US XBLA This Week

In this week's XBLA update, we've finally gotten official confirmation that Ikaruga, the classic Japanese shoot 'em up (sorry, I despise the term "shmup") is coming to the platform this Wednesday, April 9th. Now in HD, players can enjoy standard leaderboards as well as online co-op and replay/save video support. It'll set you back 800 points.

In addition, the highly regarded newb Poker Smash will be offering two expansions. The Environment Pack (with two new action mode environments) and the Puzzle Pack (with 15 new puzzles) will each be available for 100 points.

All in all, it's a nice week of updates on XBLA. For the full, gruesome details, hit the jump.

The Japanese arcade hit "Ikaruga" receives the full Xbox LIVE Arcade treatment and is poised to launch on the platform this Wednesday, April 9, 2008 at 9:00 a.m. GMT (1:00 a.m. PDT).

"Ikaruga" is a fast-paced scrolling shooter with a twist - players must constantly switch their ship's polarity to maximize their damage output and avoid incoming enemy fire of the opposite polarity.

"Ikaruga" on Xbox LIVE Arcade features a two-player co-op mode both locally and over Xbox LIVE. Newcomers can also easily bring their skill up to speed by using the game's slow motion training mode.

"Ikaruga" is a perfect combination of beautiful, manga-style storytelling and challenging arcade heroics, all brought to life in a gorgeous HD environment.

Gamers itching to obtain a moment of "Ikaruga" glory will be wise to master the chaining system that detects when enemies of the same polarity are destroyed consecutively. Doing so will reward players with huge score bonuses, which will be key to topping "Ikaruga's" leaderboards.

The ability to relive a particularly harrowing battle is also possible thanks to the game's record and replay function, which is new to the Xbox LIVE Arcade version of the game.

From the Japanese developer Treasure, "Ikaruga" will be available worldwide for 800 Microsoft Points and is rated E for Everyone by the ESRB.

Independent developer Void Star Creations unveils two new downloadable content packs for their hit Xbox LIVE Arcade title, "Poker Smash" this Wednesday, April 9, 2008 at 9:00 a.m. GMT (1:00 a.m. PDT). The new content includes two Action Mode Environments in the Environment Pack and an additional 15 Puzzles in the Puzzle Pack, giving "Poker Smash" players a total of 13 immersive environments and 70 mind bending puzzles. The "Poker Smash" Environment Pack and Puzzle Pack will each be available for 100 Microsoft Points.


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