Gamescom: Few Surprises from Microsoft's 'Play Day' Event

Casting an eye on Microsoft's Play Day room would let an Xbox fanboy die happy. Starting in one corner with Forza Motorsport 4 running on a three-screen setup with a hydraulic bucking-bronco chair (like Sega used to attach to its arcade racers) and moving around through a number of Kinect titles before ending up with Gears of War 3, it was certainly an impressive showing.

So impressive, in fact, that it was difficult to spend any protracted amount of time with the games in question, though I did manage to grab a go on a few and watch over a few other people's shoulders. The others will be on the show floor over the next few days for the public to get their hands on, for this was a trade and media only event.

Forza 4 certainly looked good on the big triple display, but fundamentally it still looked very Forza-ish. If you're into your cars it will make you very happy indeed. If you just like smashing expensive-looking cars up you might get tired by the fact that after 20 hours play you've barely completed 10% of the game, as in its predecessors.

Star Wars Kinect was on show, too, and there was also an actual working R2-D2 unit trundling around attempting to distract people from the fact that Star Wars Kinect really doesn't look very good at all. Motion detection is seriously iffy and it had a big problem with people standing behind the player watching.

Dance Central 2, which sat next to Star Wars Kinect, made it look a bit silly, with excellent motion detection, even in multiplayer.

Kinectimals With Bears showed off its bears -- specifically in this case a panda. It was otherwise business as usual, with the player being invited to do increasingly ridiculous things in order to teach their new friend tricks.