Each model handled brilliantly and they all sounded extremely pissed off and angry when tearing up a hill at top speed. The whole game knocked us out with its incredible looks too. We want more of the same on 360 please, only this time with all the sounds, effects, rally modes, damage models and Xbox Live multiplayer options cranked up to 11, 12 or possibly even 13 (if 360 is hard enough).
Developer DICE has since turned its attention to war with the Battlefield series for EA. The studio literally went from one extreme to another. The lack of official licences may have contributed to the fact that games like WRC or Colin McRae always went down better in the shops. Shame really, as RalliSport Challenge was miles better in our opinion.
7. CONKER LIVE & RELOADED
How can you not love Rare's foul-mouthed squirrel with attitude?
Originally an N64 title, Rare took forever to revamp its action-platformer for Xbox. In the end we were treated to better visuals and a massive multiplayer component that was an instant hit over Xbox Live. But we loved Conker's Bad Fur Day for its adult-orientated sense of toilet humour. We're just as bad as you lot!
The single player game was packed with very funny, comedy takes on movies and other games, while still looking and playing like a trademark Rare platform game packed with puzzles and heart-fluttering jumps. The opening pop at A Clockwork Orange is legendary, as is the tip of the hat to Saving Private Ryan's nerve-shreddingly classic Normandy beach-landing scene.
In the absence of any continuation of Rare's other classic platformer, Banjo-Kazooie, this has got to be an option for the reclusive studio. Why waste time on another Perfect Dark game when we're crying out for more Conker-style giggles? In the face of all the violence and realistic war games flooding the shops, it would make the world a better place.
8. NINJA GAIDEN
The daddy of the ninjas!
We've banged on about Ninja Gaiden (pronounced guy-den, alright?) almost too much now. But we're going to force you to listen to us one last time. It's not hard - you're just playing it wrong is OXM's motto when it comes to Ryu and slicing heads off ninjas. These things take time and don't be fooled into thinking it's a typical third-person hack-and-slash-em up. It's not!
Once you've got your head around the fact that Tecmo's masterpiece needs to be played like the firm's beat 'em up series Dead Or Alive, and you've mastered all the different combos for the different weapons, you'll know we were right all along.
Never before has a game kept us going for so long, surprising us around every corner with its playability, visuals and involving score. The wall-running abilities of master ninja Ryu make Ubisoft's Prince of Persia series look embarrassing. If POP controlled as good as this, it would be a FAR better game and you know it!
You'd think that the scope for swinging a blade around is pretty limited, thanks to games like Dynasty Warriors, but Gaiden's enormous arsenal of flailing is nothing short of mind-boggling. So there.
9. STAR WARS KNIGHTS OF THE OLD REPUBLIC II
You can never have too many Star Wars RPGs
How on Endor it took LucasArts so many years to create (or give the job to someone else) a decent Star Wars role-playing game is beyond even the reaches of a few Jedis and the Force. But KOTOR, as it became quickly known as, blew us away with the power of a certain fully-armed and operational battle station.
Action was set in a massive Star Wars universe that slipped into the official Lucas timelines perfectly, thanks to events taking place thousands of years before the movies. There were several planets to explore, billions of characters to interact with, too many missions to complete for any strategy guide to be 100 per cent complete, and the all-important combat element was refined from what you'd expect from an RPG.