Xbox 360 comes of age – part two
E3 Microsoft is making the most of its head-start in the superconsole wars, with the arrival of essential software such as the brilliant Gears of War
Another tasty horror game is Dead Rising, a kind of Grand Theft Auto with zombies that we first played last year. Now it’s even more bloody – the great thing about fighting zombies is they’re pretty slow – we particularly enjoyed smashing their skulls with dumbbells.
As well as appealing to bloodthirst gamers, Microsoft has been working hard to extend the 360’s audience. Hence a raft of new downloadable titles for Xbox Live Arcade, including coin-op classics like Pac Man and Frogger, plus the cutesy Viva Pinata, a visual feast the combines Tamagotchi with The Sims – your task is to manage a farm of beautifully animated cartoon piñata animals.
Another addition to the Xbox armoury is the new HD-DVD drive, a USB plug-in that allows high-definition movie viewing. It looks like a miniaturized 360 and is about the size of a chunky hardback book. It’s hard to see the drive becoming mass market – not least because the 360 makes so much noise that it’ll drown out quit movies – but at least it makes up for the 360’s major deficiency when compared to the PS3.