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Guitar Hero 5 runs on Windows Phone 7 hardware. The console hit will be among the phone series' top launch titles.  (Source: Microsoft)

Windows Phone 7 gamers can also save Hoth from those pesky imperials with "Star Wars: Battle for Hoth". And you thought they smelled bad on the outside...  (Source: Microsoft)
Microsoft brings out some big guns, as well as some lesser known titles

Microsoft's upcoming Windows Phone 7 series has drawn a lot of criticism due to reports that it will not implement multitasking and copy & paste -- features that its prime competitors RIM, Google and Apple have mastered.  However, a solid base experience and a solid app library is just as important.

When it comes to apps, Microsoft is especially focused on gaming.  The company yesterday at Gamescom 2010 in Cologne, Germany unveiled a plethora of details about its upcoming Xbox Live service and a host of titles that will available at launch.

Among the upcoming games include 
Assassins CreedBejeweled LIVE, Crackdown 2: Project SunburstEarthworm Jim, Fast & Furious 7Guitar Hero 5Halo WaypointSplinter Cell ConvictionStar Wars: Battle for HothThe Oregon Trail, and Zombie Attack!

Games will be hosted on a central hub, so if, heaven forbid, you lose your Windows Phone, you can easily regain access to your library.  Most games will have trials available that you can test drive before you buy them.

The WP7 iteration of the Xbox Live service also features some nice social gaming features.  Like its console brethren, it features unlockable achievements and competitive Gamerscores.

One minor disappointment is that it does not appear that real-time multiplayer titles (such as
Quake-style FPS match) will be available.  The announcement from Microsoft does say that turn-based (asynchronous) multi-player gaming can be supported.  It seems like just a matter of time, though, before someone comes up with a lightweight real-time FPS for WP7 hardware.

Microsoft has a lot of ground to catch up to match Nintendo or Sony in mobile gaming... or even to match Google or Apple.  However, as it proved in the console world, just because you're late to the game doesn't mean that you can't prove a big success.  If you told people in 2001 when Microsoft launched the original Xbox that it would go on to be beat Sony -- the top player in the market at the time, with over 7 years experience in the console industry -- most would have thought you were crazy.  Thus it's important not to write off Windows Phone 7's gaming potential prematurely.





"I want people to see my movies in the best formats possible. For [Paramount] to deny people who have Blu-ray sucks!" -- Movie Director Michael Bay



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