And Finally

Only a few titles seemed mildly disappointing. Chief among this unhappy group were Dead Rising – does the world really need a zombie-battering game this simple? – and Ridge Racer 6. After Project Gotham 3 and Need for Speed: Most Wanted, Namco’s next-generation racer seemed fearsomely bland. The sort of tracks we were impressed by on Ridge Racers PSP don’t look half as amazing on a huge, high-definition screen, and the controls had on odd, unresponsive digital feel. Come on Namco: your portable Ridge Racer did a great job of putting the brand back on track – don’t blow it now.

In general, X05 gave me lots of reasons to be hopeful. There are some genuinely brilliant games in this line-up, and having actually played real Xbox 360 software on real Xbox 360 hardware, I’m left impressed with the power of the machine. Admittedly, I have been left with some questions. Is there anything truly original or groundbreaking in the launch line-up? Probably not. Also, the odd inconsistent frame rate and the huge discrepancies between the best looking titles and the worst make me suspect that it will – as some developers have stated – take time for programmers to get their heads around the triple-core CPU and the new ATI GPU. However, as the first foray into a new era of gaming, this is a very good start.

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