7. Project Gotham Racing 2
Bizarre Creations | Microsoft | 2003
The ultimate arcade racer of the generation, PGR3 blends finesse and skill into an unparalled mix - with fantastic online play, too
What made it so great?
The original Project Gotham Racing hit when the Xbox launched, bringing fantastic control, beautiful representations of real world cities... and a lot of little problems. PGR2 erased the memory of those with one of the most engrossing single-player racing epics seen last generation. As you gradually get better, progress further and unlock new cars and tracks, you begin to get a feel for the game's subtly-tuned racing system and the global cities that make up the game's tracks.
The smooth and steady gameplay progression is completely addictive, and attempting to wow the computer and earn Kudos - points awarded for daring and stylish driving - is an added incentive to bring your A-game. Once you think you've got it all down pat, you can take the fight to Xbox Live. When the game originally launched, Xbox Live was just coming into its own, and this game was a landmark driving title that showcased just what Microsoft's online service was truly capable of.
Get ready to play
Obviously, the Xbox 360 is home to this game's sequel, which dampens its appeal, and the Xbox Live competition has likely dwindled to near-nothing. All the same, this is a very sweet single player game with excellent graphics and smooth control, and well worth the miniscule monetary investment.
Been there, done that?
Burnout 3: Takedown was one of the most entertaining racing games on the Xbox, trading in high-adrenaline racing and massive crashes. Though the series had four entries on the Xbox, most agree Burnout 3 had the best balance of great track design and entertaining race types.