There are two unused product list blocks in Magento which can be very useful if you push a few buttons, edit few layouts ..
Block located in app\code\core\Mage\Catalog\Block\Product\List\Promotion.php
This is basically built in featured product functionality. It reacts to “promotion” attribute which needs to be created, so let’s click
Catalog->Attributes->Manage Attributes->Create New Attribute
Attribute Code: promotion
Catalog Input Type for Store Owner: Yes/No