The games that shaped a generation: Xbox

Microsoft entered the console fray in a big, big way. We recount the big black box's successes here

9. Panzer Dragoon Orta
Smilebit | Sega | 2003

The fourth game in Sega's much-revered Panzer Dragoon series saw dragon-flying, shooting fun whip up a beautiful storm on Xbox

What made it so great?
Xbox's superior power in the last generation was put to spectacular use in Orta, creating one of the most breathtakingly cinematic shooters ever seen. Even back in the days of the Sega Saturn, Team Andromeda were pushing the hardware further than anyone thought possible and while Orta may not be quite as revolutionary, it's still a magnificent spectacle.

Add in a strategic dragon-placement system similar to that found in obscure RPG classic Panzer Dragoon Saga and you soon find yourself cunningly avoiding enemy fire then moving around to exploit a weak spot for massive damage. Although it's essentially an on-rails shooter, such cold words can't do justice to the game's majesty. You'll suspend your disbelief until you really are riding a terrifying dragon beast through fiery skies... what better recommendation can we give?

9. Panzer Dragoon Orta
Smilebit | Sega | 2003

The fourth game in Sega's much-revered Panzer Dragoon series saw dragon-flying, shooting fun whip up a beautiful storm on Xbox

What made it so great?
Xbox's superior power in the last generation was put to spectacular use in Orta, creating one of the most breathtakingly cinematic shooters ever seen. Even back in the days of the Sega Saturn, Team Andromeda were pushing the hardware further than anyone thought possible and while Orta may not be quite as revolutionary, it's still a magnificent spectacle.

Add in a strategic dragon-placement system similar to that found in obscure RPG classic Panzer Dragoon Saga and you soon find yourself cunningly avoiding enemy fire then moving around to exploit a weak spot for massive damage. Although it's essentially an on-rails shooter, such cold words can't do justice to the game's majesty. You'll suspend your disbelief until you really are riding a terrifying dragon beast through fiery skies... what better recommendation can we give?

Get ready to play
The 'tap fire to shoot or hold down to lock-on' mechanic is identical to that found in cult classic Rez on PS2, so that might be a good place to get the hang of its gameplay. Just to warn you, your first moments in-game will be spent desperately trying to look forwards and backwards at the same time, while trying not to drool on the floor.

Been there, done that?
Another Smilebit-developed game, Gunvalkyrie, is a decent alternative shooter. You get more control over your character in this third-person title, with the ability to run and boost freely in all directions, but it's just not as magical as Orta. Some gamers swear by it, though, so definitely worth a look.

Get ready to play
The 'tap fire to shoot or hold down to lock-on' mechanic is identical to that found in cult classic Rez on PS2, so that might be a good place to get the hang of its gameplay. Just to warn you, your first moments in-game will be spent desperately trying to look forwards and backwards at the same time, while trying not to drool on the floor.

Been there, done that?
Another Smilebit-developed game, Gunvalkyrie, is a decent alternative shooter. You get more control over your character in this third-person title, with the ability to run and boost freely in all directions, but it's just not as magical as Orta. Some gamers swear by it, though, so definitely worth a look.

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