As an exclusive launch title for the Xbox One, Ryse: Son of Rome is a big, epic action title that developer Crytek hopes will really show the system's strengths.
It stars a Roman general named Marius Titus who's on a lifelong quest for vengeance while defending the Republic. Hack 'n' slash combat is at the heart of the game, while the cinematic style really shows off the epic scope of the game.
After the game's showing at E3 some gamers were worried that Ryse would be too heavily reliant on quick-time events, but that's not quite how it works. Once you've got a foe within an inch of their life a skull and crossbones will appear above their head, indicating you can move in for the kill with a tap to the B button and accompanying cool animation. As you progress, more impressive finishing moves will become available, and the enemy will get a coloured glow to let you know whether you need to tap X or Y to unleash it. Successful executions earn you perks, which become selectable using the D-pad. Focus, for instance, enables you to briefly slow down time and stun an opponent, while Damage doubles the harm you dish out with an attack.
As a launch title, Ryse puts the Xbox One's features to work. Using SmartGlass, players can manage their character's progress with a compatible tablet or smartphone. Thanks to the console's DVR functionality it's possible to record and share your finest moments, while Kinect 2.0 enables you to command legions with the sound of your voice.
As well as the single-player mode you'd expect from a game like Ryse, there's a hefty multiplayer component in which players can take each other on in an evolving gladiatorial arena.