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For me, my absolute first "Wow" moment was when my younger cousin and I went into Electronics Boutique in Stirling circa 2000 and they had the demo Xbox in there, featuring one level of Halo - The Silent Cartographer.
He and I literally spent from about noon until the shop closed periodically going back to play it again and again. At the time, that kind of cooperative, open-plan shooter wasn't available, and to seamlessly switch between on-foot and vehicular combat, to have all those AI troops storming the beach with you - we couldn't get enough of it.
My second "whoa" moment was realising that one of my favourite Dreamcast games could look EVEN BETTER than it did when it came out only a few years prior - when I got Jet Set Radio Future. WHAT ARE YOUR PERSONAL FIRST EVER XBOX "WHOA!" MOMENTS?
Double Jump Game Comics: http://doublejump.thecomicseries.com/
Playing Burnout Revenge when my brother in law got me my first 360. I had been gaming since the Atari days but took a 3 year break until the 360 launch to power through college. I was amazed at how fast the game was, the depth of field, lack of slowdown, and how seamless and easy the online play was.
I was blown away a second time when I discovered that I could stream my music into the game! Made a burnout playlist and everything.
As a side note I didn't know what achievements were. I thought that you could use them to rent movies because at the time Microsoft had their own currency and I thought that was the same as the g points. I went to a game stop and asked how I could buy achievement points so I could rent movies on the xbox. Guy was a total snot and told me to earn them! You'd think he'd understand the context and explain it. This was in 2007ish and I was almost 30. Guess I should've googled it.
I had a few on the 360, and I'm not sure which came first so I'll just post them both:
--The first time I fought my friend in Fight Night Round 3 and saw the slow motion replay of a knockout.
--The first time I played G.R.A.W. There's a mission early on in that game where some sort of Government building blows up. The whole think looked and sounded so intense that it actually shook me up a bit. That was the first real "next-gen" moment I had in the 360/PS3 gen.
Still waiting for my first whoa moment on the Xbone. Some of the environments in Ryse came close, but I was so far from being immersed in the actual game that it really didn't have much of an effect.
Don't post something you'd be ashamed to show your parents or your children.
My first Xbox woah moment when I was at my friends house seeing Nazi Zombies on W@W. I have never seen anything like it being a predominately Nintendo gamer at the time with the gimped version of W@W on the Wii. That game really made me go buy a 360 right a way. I have never seen so many zombies on the screen before with that game on the higher waves.
Wars may be fought with weapons, but they are won by men. It is the spirit of men who follow and of the man who leads that gains the victory.--General Patton
Honestly I bought my Xbox to complete the collection. I had got a Gamecube and a ton of games like a month before and I had a nice little game center set up and money to blow so I went ahead and got an Xbox for the hell of it.
My first wow moment was unboxing it and feeling how heavy and quality the wires felt. The original Xbox just felt expensive, specially compared to the super light Gamecube with its super short controller cords.
--- Chilling and Killing 11 (Punching Titans) on youtube. http://youtu.be/q4p7NCm7fng