Xbox Live Arcade has come a long way since its launch on the original Xbox a little over 6 years ago. Back then the selection of games was in the teens but now there are hundreds of games on the service. You can play anything from 16-bit classics like Streets of Rage 2 to exceptional original titles like Shadow Complex.
With so many games to choose from it’s hard to know what to spend your good ‘ol Microsoft Points on. Lucky for you however we at XBLAFans have taken it upon ourselves to compile a list of the 15 XBLA games you must own. The games featured (listed alphabetically because they’re just too good to rank on quality) are the best of the best. If you haven’t played a game on this list then you owe it to yourself to at least download the trial (which we’ve handily linked to) and give it a go.
So let’s get on with it shall we, below you’ll find the games we decided on and brief summaries from our writer explaining why they’re deserving of the term “must own”. If you agree or disagree with the list, or just want to comment in general please feel free to do so.
Huge thanks to the entire team of writers who worked on this article: Andrew Crews, Cameron Titus, John Carson, Todd Schlickbernd, Tyler Cameron and Xeserox
We’ve spent the past week searching the internet and hounding our industry contacts in an effort to compile the ultimate 2011 XBLA Game Release List. We anticipated one heck of a year for Xbox Live Arcade. So epic we couldn’t even fit everything on one page. So without further ado, check out the list:
For detailed descriptions of each of the games and videos check the links below.
On behalf of the XBLAFans staff, welcome to the first annual XBLAFans 2010 Game of Year Awards!
2010 was a fantastic year for the Xbox Live Arcade, filled with surprises, letdowns, and, of course, great releases that will be remembered for years to come, like Limbo, Super Meat Boy and Monday Night Combat.
We even saw the triumphant return of some classic franchises, with games like Perfect Dark, Casltevania: Harmony of Despair, Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1, Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light and Hydro Thunder Hurricane lighting up friend lists everywhere.
Yes, it was a fine year for the XBLA indeed.
We at XBLAFans.com have spent countless hours playing, discussing and writing about our favorite games to come out on Microsoft’s digital store. We know you love the XBLA as much as we do, and nominating five titles for each of the categories below was difficult. Deciding the winners was even more difficult, as many great titles sadly did not make the cut.
In the end, only a few winners received our highest accolades, with an honorable mention given to the runner-up. Here are the winners for the 2010 Game of the Year Awards:
Earlier today the DLC achievements were finally added to Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World. You can now feel safe to purchase the DLC pack, which sells for 160MS Points ($2), if you were holding out. If you do ever find yourself having issues with DLC achievements in the future, the solution listed in the first UPDATE works every time for correcting conflicting gamerscore.
** END OF LAST UPDATE**
This guide is geared towards helping players build all weapon combos. However, the “Handy Man” achievement for building all the new combos is a little tricky. In order to get the achievement, build ONLY the following seven weapons: Shocker, Zap N’ Shine, Lightning Gun, Reaper, Impact Blaster, Sterilizer, Laser Gun.
I realize you have to build the Laser Sword and the Lightning Gun to then build the Laser Gun, and that is fine for you to do. If you build any other weapon before these 7 (8 if you count Laser Gun components), the achievement won’t unlock. You will then have to move your save file to another memory unit or delete it from your hard drive and start a new game from a memory device that contains no previous Case West data. Then you will need to build the previously listed 7 weapons in order to unlock this achievement.
Section 8 was a flawed gem. A diamond in the rough relegated mostly to bargain bins, the original Section 8 pushed new ideas into the first person shooter genre. It overcame minor bugs, mixed reviews and the stigma of being a full priced multiplayer only game, developing a small cult following along the way. Section 8 is back and ready to do an orbital drop again, but this time TimeGate Studios is rewriting the rules.
With the freedom that self publishing gives them, TimeGate Studios is pushing the boundaries of what has been traditionally accepted as normal. Section 8 Prejudice is a fully fledged sequel to Section 8; however, it will be released on Xbox Live Arcade in early 2011 for 1200 Microsoft Points ($15), nearly a fraction of the cost of the original. The transition from a $60 retail product to an Xbox Live Arcade sequel is a new one in this industry. We had some trepidation that the production values would suffer or that the game might feel too much like a rehash of the first, but that was all alleviated when we went hands on with Prejudice this past week.
You may, or rather should have heard of the Indie Games Winter Uprising by now. But if you haven’t here’s what you need to know. The developers behind the Indie Games on Xbox Live Marketplace decided they wanted an event in the vein of a “Summer of Arcade” and other such promotions. Resigned to the fact Microsoft wasn’t going to make one for them they took it upon themselves to do so. Thus the Winter Uprising was born, originally intended to take place during the first week of December it has now been extended to include the entire month.
We here at XBLAFans are passionate in our feeling that the Indie Games section deserves more recognition than it currently receives. As such we have created this hub for the games that will be included in the Uprising. Here you’ll find a brief description of the games, a link to the developers website, screenshots, trailers, pricing (if available), and for those games already released there will be download links and reviews.
The games are being released pretty irregularly, with several having already been delayed due to last minute bugs so be sure to check back often and see what’s new!
The following article is based around an email interview conducted by our team with Naked Sky’s CTO Joshua Glazer. Naked Sky is also known for their previous XBLA title RoboBlitz, which was released back in November 2006z.
Microbot is a twin stick shooter that lets the player battle malicious viruses and diseases as a microscopic nanotech robot injected into someone’s bloodstream. As players travel travel through veins, bones, lungs and other organs, they can collected data fragments that allows them to customize their microbot with powerful weapons, defensive systems, movement parts, and special abilities. What got yours truly’s blood pumping about this title, is the planned cooperative drop-in/drop-out mode.