"Trial version of game has been downloaded more than 200,000 times.
The first time gamers got an Xbox, they fell in love with a blistering, trigger-happy game starring a space Marine. The first time gamers are getting an Xbox 360, they're falling for a blistering, trigger-happy game starring a space ship. And it barely costs $5.
If you've got an Xbox 360, chances are you've already played "Geometry Wars." And if you've played it, you've discovered the iceberg tip of Xbox Live Arcade, the 360's download service that some gamers and game makers say has the potential to change what people look for in a game console and may even increase the odds that the average Xbox gamer may someday make a game for the system.
" 'Geometry Wars' has been our 'Halo,' " said Greg Canessa, the group manager in charge of Live Arcade.
Since the 360 was launched less than two months ago, the trial version of the game has been downloaded more than 200,000 times, according to Canessa. Nearly 45,000 people have purchased the full game and had their high scores posted on Xbox Live's global-leader board.
The game seems to be popular in part because it is simple: One space ship on one board shoots at waves of enemies that explode in dazzling bursts of light. The appeal is the quest for a high score and the fireworks such a drive produces.
"It's like an interactive version of those acid-trip musical visualization devices," said Epic Games designer Cliff Bleszinski.
"GW" addicts should note that the game's 25-year-old designer, Stephen Cakebread, said he was initially thinking of putting mazes in the sequel. He had also dabbled with multiplayer when working on the original. But he decided to keep the design simple and go for visual splash. "There was something pure about having the open arena and having the enemies come at you," he said. The game worked best when he kept it simple." [more]
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