Xbox 360 comes of age

While PlayStation and Nintendo are struggling to make enough consoles for their Christmas launches, Microsoft is celebrating a successful first year t

While PlayStation and Nintendo are struggling to make enough consoles for their Christmas launches, Microsoft is celebrating a successful first year that should see 10m 360s shipped before any of its rivals even go on sale.

And now that developers are starting to make the most of the console’s awesome power, we’re finally seeing the arrival of must have games – such as the fantastic Table Tennis from Rockstar and the forthcoming third-person shooter Gears of War, which we’ve just had the pleasure of playing behind closed doors.

Gears of War – expected late in the year – is undoubtedly the coolest fragger for the 360 (at least until the arrival of Halo 3, which is at the show in video form only). We played it in multiplayer mode – it looks amazing, with Private Ryan-style cinema angles and a brooding sense of horror. We loved the way it requires you to shoot from cover rather than running and spraying bullets. Best feature, though, is the chainsaw that’s built into the machine gun for close-up gore.

Continue reading part two –  Dead Rising,  game downloads and HD-DVD