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PlayStations of the 'cross



This spring, go back to the Holy Land ready to kick donkey and take names. But don't let go of your joystick! Straight from the screen of your local multiplex comes a hot new video game that lets you fight alongside Jesus -- or maybe even in his sandals. The heat is on and the nonbelievers are out for blood in this multilevel, flagrantly denominational adventure. The stakes are as high as the fate of man itself, and you're right out in front of all the ear-slicing, cross-carrying, cheek-turning action!

Set the scene
Revisit play scenarios taken directly from the hit movie "The Passion of the Christ™." Start in the Garden of Gethsemane, where those who live by the sword die by the sword. Then move on to the dimly lit chambers of Caiaphas, keeping an eye out for the brutality, betrayal and day-old gefilte fish that lurk around every corner. From there, enter the court of Pontius Pilate, a four-star hard case who just might turn out to be a sweetie after all. Finally, haul your burden up the long road to Calvary, enduring the cruelty of your tormentors as you wait patiently for your chance to get all messianic on their a**es! Judgment is coming to sin city -- but who will be the last man standing when it gets there?

Take it to the next level
The "solo" option lets you play as Jesus, suffering all the tortures you saw in the movie -- and then some! Scourging is just the beginning, because The Passion of the Christ: The Game™ enhances its prophetic accuracy with state-of-the-art kill power. Withstand unbelievable extremes of punishment -- like, really, really unbelievable -- at the hands of enemies who come equipped with ninja throwing stars, poison-dipped bolos and even a live mortar shell or three! But while the ferociously armed rabble are scoring direct hits on your immaculate person, you're racking up Divinity Points™ that will help you lay the redemptive smack down in the end!

Dual in the sun
Tired of your one-man crusade? Just call up a buddy and -- blammo! -- you're playing against a real Roman Centurion, accessible in any one of four fully realized behavioral modes (Barbaric, Barbaric/ Fanatical, Reachable But Still Dangerous and Outright Satanic). The extended-play option opens up the game's parameters to as many as nine more independently functioning characters. Stock your scriptural combat team with a full complement of disciples, including viciously self-interested escape artist Judas; crafty but unreliable weapons expert Peter; doubtful master of disguise Thomas; and sultry Mary Magdalene, the hooker with a heart of gold.

The right hand of G-d
Totally interactive environments and superior 3-D character modeling make The Passion of the Christ: The Game™ the next best thing to being Galilean. Count every last mole on a high priest's face before he condemns you to political extermination. And when the veil of the temple is rent in twain from the top to the bottom, you'll feel the 5.1 SurroundSound R-I-I-I-I-P traveling right down your spine.

Sound theology
While the furious game play keeps your knuckles white, your speakers will quake to the digitally mastered rifferama of today's hardest-edged hits, including Saliva's "Click Click Boom," Nickelback's "How You Remind Me" and Rob Zombie's 2004 remix of the classic "Jesus Is Just Alright (With Me)."

Pick your platform
The Passion of the Christ: The Game™ is compatible with all major game systems, including Xbox, Nintendo GameCube and PlayStation 2 (just not Vatican II).

Buffer the little children
As hyped as we are about this new chapter in gaming excitement, we're as serious as a heart attack about its "T" rating. Younger kids shouldn't be exposed to the explicit bloodletting of our savior's final hours (unless they're in the company of responsible parents who want to make a point about bedtime). Anyway, the grade-school set will have more fun with Jesus Race for GameBoy, a rollicking escapade that has kids helping Christ collect the enchanted apples that fall from Farmer Brown's tree. A perfect score in each level displays the message, "God is pleased with you!" and cues a victory dance by special guest Sonic the Hedgehog.

Read between the lines
To learn insider secrets and pick up invaluable tips for advanced play, dig into the official companion guide to both games, titled The King James Bible and available at most major bookstores.

The Passion of the Christ: The Game™
Forgive them, Lord ... they don't know who they're ****ing with!

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