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Torchlight Coming To XBLA As Part Of "Arcade House Party"

Beginning this February, Microsoft will release five games under this brand new banner.

The first Xbox Live Arcade promotion of 2011 will begin next month with the release of the Contra-esque Hard Corps Uprising on Feb. 16. Hard Corps will then be followed up by four more titles, each under the banner of "Arcade House Party," a brand-spanking new promotion that Microsoft made a lot of noise about at its CES press conference yesterday afternoon.

And there's a good reason: one of the games following Hard Corps' release will be PopCap Games' uber-addictive Bejeweled Blitz. Ubisoft's Beyond Good & Evil HD will also see a release under this window, as well as the long-rumored console release of Torchlight, Runic Games' fantastic dungeon-crawler. That's right--I said Torchlight.

Runic hit the ground running with the game's announcement, wanting to get ahead of any negative speculation about the upcoming port of the PC game. In a recent forum post, Runic boss Travis Baldtree confirms that the XBLA version's controls and UI have been reworked. Baldtree says that you'll now have direct analog-stick control of your character, while combat will feel similar to games like Dark Alliance or Champions of Norrath
 
  

  
== TEASER ==Even though all skills and "pretty much everything from the PC" will make it over to the XBLA version, some mechanics-- such as skills, spells, and item-mapping--have been altered for ease of use on a controller, Baldtree says. Secondary weapon sets, on the other hand, have been completely stripped because Runic discovered that there wasn't a good way to include that mechanic.

Expect some new-new stuff, too. On top of three new armor sets, a new "Chakawary" pet, and some new random quests, Torchlight for XBLA will be using some "goodies" from Torchlight II, including better loading times, better animation blends, and improved auto-mapping. 

Lastly, Arcade House Party will also see the release of Full House Poker. Hard Corps is the only game with a solid date thus far, but I'd imagine that more release information is coming soon. 

You can check out the Runic forum thread for a bit more information about the forthcoming port, and Scrawl for some supposed XBLA screenshots. The respective wiki pages for all the other releases should have anything you're looking for.