A golden oldie, from the beginning of the Xbox 360.
Sequels are big business in the games industry. Once a studio hits on a successful idea, there's often a lot of pressure from publishers to continue the winning formula. And while some people like to bring out a sequel every year, others spend an age getting just one ready. Rare have spent five and a half years on the sequel to Perfect Dark on the N64. Itself a spiritual sequel to the dearly beloved Goldeneye, Perfect Dark won the hearts of hardened 'Goldenistas' with hugely customisable multiplayer modes and a fun story mode that even supported two player co-operative play.
Since then, a sequel has been slated for GameCube; then - following the Microsoft buy-out - for Xbox. With the perfectionists at Rare unable to keep their hands off it, it slipped again to Xbox 360. But perhaps this is a blessing, and Perfect Dark Zero standing proudly shoulder to shoulder with its comrades in the Xbox 360 launch line-up is a stirring sight.
The story once again concerns itself with the adventures of svelte lovely Joanna Dark. As is increasingly common in this genre, the game is in fact a prequel to the well-loved original Perfect Dark and tells the story of how she entered the employ of the Carrington Institute as a trusted member of their corporate espionage division.
Three years before the events depicted on N64, Joanna embarks on a mission for the first time with her bounty hunter ex-cop father. What follows are 13 episodes that show how Joanna cut her teeth during a particularly fierce flare-up between eternal enemies the Carrington Institute and dataDyne Corp. Get that catsuit nimble feeling of girlyness as you roll and skip round each stage, toting a satisfying array of chunky weaponry. Detractors of the first Perfect Dark said that the graphics were too ambitious - sometimes appearing a muddy mess. That's not a criticism that the Xbox 360 version is going to face. PDZ already looks like something from the year 2020, ferchrissakes - handy, seeing as that's the setting for the game.
With a Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound facility and a big TV, the big guns look and sound...well, bigger than ever. The Limited Edition comes with a comic book, slipcase and bonus DVD - well worth the extra five brick.