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GameSpot's The Lobby: What are the best Xbox 360 games ever?The Xbox 360 turned ten years old this week so we invited Jeff Gerstmann, Ben Howard and Justin Haywald to help us run town the best games in the system's history!
[MUSIC] The Xbox 360 is ten years old. Ten years gentlemen. Ten. Count them. Look at them. I am also ten. Justin are you ten? No. Ben Howard are you ten? I am ten multiplied. Nice. It's been a good long period of time, still making games for it. 2005 came out [CROSSTALK] Yeah. Titan Full, TomeRaider. This has been kind of the last year for the Xbox 360. This is kind of when we've seen the transition, we're not getting more Xbox 360 PS3 games. Everything is Getting cancelled for that in favor of XBOX One. Oh course, now you've got hot backwards compatibility, so you're going to be able to resell and bundle all 360 games with every remake and sequel. I think that's really kicked people in the nuts who are working on HD. The guy who did Castle Crashers HD. They had no idea backwards compatibility was coming, and they were like, **** you guys. Yeah. It's like [UNKNOWN] boy just came out on PS4 and everything, it's like oh well. You could probably get FIFA for years to come, right. It's always like, the last few years are just like here's nine more sports games, like Legacy Edition. Or, I think, even the I wanna see this here's games might have branded legacy edition. Oh maybe, Call of Duty did the thing where they stripped out the campaign as well. Between these seems to be the big AAA games and then the sports ones are gonna- It's because they're not allowed to call them **** edition. Right, yeah. Well they are, but Anyway, [INAUDIBLE] have you played the campaign? It's fine, a version without it you're not missing out. I was gonna say the Game of the Year stuff, but Maybe not? Maybe not? Maybe I'm right? You're probably okay. Let's not talk about the sort of grey years of the console. Let's talk about its wonderful, youthful prime. So what were some of the best games? Red ringing left and right. That youthful prime. Oh, God. Yeah, the early days of 360. How many did you go through? How many original 360s? I only had two die. My launch 360 still works because I bought an Elite and stopped using before the first one could break. Did you have any [UNKNOWN] I was pretty lucky I think. I had one red ring. Which I managed to wrap a towel around and nurse it back into temporary health until it finally gave up the [INAUDIBLE] I think I was pretty lucky cuz I only went through One until I moved on to an Elite. I also only went through One. In fact they fixed that one and sent it back to me. But now cuz it's a power One, and I moved over here, and none of the games are working So I had to bring her with me but it's like. I had to take off the face plate and stuff because the disk drive is so broken. [LAUGH] That I have to wedge a knife in. Wow. Every time I take the disk out. So now it just looks like it's [CROSSTALK] destroyed. [CROSSTALK] Well we have a room out in the back which is you know like filled with the carcasses of [UNKNOWN] [CROSSTALK] That big. [LAUGH] [CROSSTALK] There's some. [CROSSTALK] There's some kind of like Gamespot repository of like. [CROSSTALK] Yeah. Yeah. [CROSSTALK] Dead Xbox 360's. [CROSSTALK] Well they don't want them anymore. We asked, When I was at one up we were getting rid of these consoles. We were like, hey do you want to take our old original Xbox ones and 360s? They were like no. That wouldn't be Xbox ones. Xbox original. Original. We have two red-ringed debugs over there, so it's just like no one wants those, they're useless, so yeah. Madness. Anyway, not talking about breaking hardware or old **** FIFA games coming out on old consoles The best games came out on Xbox 360. When I say that, Jeff, what's the first game that pops into mind? It's Burnout Paradise. I mean obviously. [LAUGH] You don't bring me on here to not talk about Burnout Paradise. [LAUGH] [UNKNOWN] come out on bottom of that as well? No, it does not. Oh, wow. It is something that they said was coming, but I don't think it was part of that initial wave. So unless they've added it past that initial wave, I don't believe it's there yet. In a weird way that game is doing stuff now that, or did stuff then, which racing games now are basically hanging their sort of coats on. Well yeah, yeah. I think so. There was, I wanna say, the Most Wanted, not the original 2005, 2006 one, but the The Criterion>>"The Criterion-Most Wanted" was basically a burn-out game in terms of the way its multiplayer was structures. It's actually on of the sad things about where "Need for Speed" has been at this past couple of years. Like it's just, they lost it. They had it, and they lost it. They had it all figured out They nailed it. And then now I've gotten so far away from nailing it that yeah, that's a great driving game. Well they own the rights to Burnout now as well, so- Yep. Shall we see maybe a resurgence? It's one of these games that was super popular with critics Didn't sell an [UNKNOWN] load. Well yeah, it's one of the things where it's just, the virtue of writing Need for Speed on the box makes it sell more copies than Burnout, just because it's a more established brand. So that's why Criterion took over Need for Speed, and then they split off to do Ghost Games, so there's Burnout Lineage all over Need for Speed now. It's just, the wrong parts of the Lineage are making its way in now. But yeah, I think that's a fantastic game. Gosh, Halo's golden years took place on the X-Box 360. Yeah, Halo 3. Wonderful. Yeah. Three was a terrific game. Reach is a good game. ODST is a lot of fun. If I had to pick three Halo games those are the three, right? Gears, I think was pretty transformative. Gears was a huge one for me. Yeah. [UNKNOWN] with me, I was a PC gamer up to that point. Yeah [UNKNOWN] Or primarily a PC gamer. And a lot of my time into the multiplayer. Which drove a lot of my game time was playing early Call of Duty. It was playing Day of Defeat, Counterstrike. In the office, on on a line with friends, and it was live which brought me over to consult, primarily, and GIFs was a big part of that, warfare was a big part of that, but it was primary the left for dead games. Right. Those games, for me, when I joined GameSpot, CNET back in 2006, in the UK Soon after that, those were the years when everyone in the office would get together as a social gathering online on Friday night and play Left for Dead. Yeah, there was like years of all of those, well, like, event games, where it seemed like everyone was buying them so that they could all play with each other. Well, and I think the social aspect of multiplayer gaming before that, for me, was driven by physically being with people in an office on a LAN. When I played online, I played a fair bit online, it would be against randoms. Yeah. All of a sudden being able to bring your group of friends together and play online, make a date when you all got home on Friday night to get pizza in, and use Live. Yeah. That transformed it, for me at least. I mean Left for Dead 1 and 2, those games are pretty impeccable. Yeah, unlike sort of a crazy I dont know, showing of just how far multiplayer games have come on console. Where you had a game like Left for Dead which involved so much cooperation that, you know, people have sort of gotten used to playing with each other so much. It seems like that was better then than it is know. I don't feel like the Xbox One or PS4 like playing with [INAUDIBLE]. Well, yeah. There aren't many great [UNKNOWN] experiences aren't always happening. And then, you know, the party stuff on Xbox 1 was so mangled and still. They've made improvements, but I feel like That's maybe not where it needs to be. And also I think maybe we've changed. Or I think people have changed to a certain extent, where I used to feel okay about wearing a headset while just playing a game, with random people and stuff like that. I played a lot of Call of Duty 4. That was another huge, huge, huge Xbox 360 game for me. And with a little more will to just kind of even hear what people had to say. [CROSSTALK] And now it's just like I don't want to hear anything. I do not wear a headset unless I'm playing, they only time I ever wear a headset now for The multi-player or any form of gaming is when I'm in a private party with friends. That's it. I don't play with random people. Yeah, and now it's like you hear voices coming out of your TV, it sounds- Where's that coming from? [LAUGH] [INAUDIBLE] Something that was like super-ubiquitous during the Xbox 360- It was like exciting. It was like wow. Now, it's like a nuisance. You're just like, what is this idiot, he's not even, he's talking to someone or worse nowadays They're running a live stream. Yeah. And they've left their chat on to the game. So you're listening to them commentate their own game that they're playing and you're just like, shut the **** up. You don't wanna get used to these days of guys doing Cocaine while playing Uno. That was. that was maybe, if I had to pick one moment for XBox Live, it was the night I tuned in and saw XBox live vision cameras and like people just straight up, Canadians doing lines. While playing Uno. You need to tune into Playstation Live or whatever the thing is, there's some weird stuff out there. Is that still going strong? Oh yeah. [CROSSTALK] Thant's the legacy. Strong might not be the right word. Very, very strong. There's a section of society that storm to it. XBox Live I think changed things, but it was also The achievement points. Like that was the only time in my life when I cared about these. And when I was working at oneup.come and EGM and we had active competitions to see who could get the most achievement points. And you're just playing all these **** games like Avatar, things that are gonna be like, how quickly can I get 1,000 points for this. And how many points did you guys get over there. [LAUGH] See, I was never as high as you, she was our Defacto. Dan Chu, editor in chief of [UNKNOWN] at the time. He was [INAUDIBLE] I'm up 40,000 now? I'm up 46. But I was at 46 four years ago. I have two accounts so I have 25 on my old [UNKNOWN] account before I moved to the US. At some point I dropped off. That was actually [CROSSTALK] You're gonna wag your digital **** though. Exactly. well mine is now a hundred and 50,000. I was gonna say if you're going to speak to anyone about cheating, cause I remember watching this man in the UK. We ran videos on the side about how to [CROSSTALK] Yeah, MBA2K [CROSSTALK] Yeah, all those early games. But that was you know, that was That was like, that era of Game Spot was like me and Carry Guscos, and a few other people on staff, like were, got super into that stuff. Carry and I bought Japanese 360s, so that we could buy Japanese games to get points also. In school there would friends who never owned a Microsoft console, didn't touch the original x-box, and suddenly we were all just like Going out on achievements and passing out, like in college, passing games around. Being like, "Oh, you want this one. It's is an easy one." Yeah. I just feel really old, Danny. Thanks. [LAUGH] I had to say college because I saw you recall when I said school. They still exist, but I just don't care. [INAUDIBLE] trophies, it's like Okay. That stuff came in too late, you had to pick one number pretty early on on that one. And it was like you're adding trophies mid stream on the PS3, you're like whatever. And now, Steam achievements have never met. Thing, and- Yeah. And they never hit reset on Xbox One, so he never felt like he wanted to get back in [CROSSTALK]. Right, and also just that I think things got muddied in terms of like where the lead platform was, and where third parties were kinda putting their efforts and stuff like that. Like, Sony's the market leader right now, which I think changes a lot of things for that stuff as well. So, yeah. But for me it was just strictly like No one was interested in keeping up anymore. It was just like, okay. Well, I'm done with this. Yeah. This is insane. Why am I doing this? Why am I doing this? Oh god. Why am I doing this? Andrew Reiner at Game Informer. I think he is higher than I am. He was one of the- The leader? Yeah. [INAUDIBLE] crazy [INAUDIBLE] Well, then part of it was, it was this thing that had introduced in the games that made me wanna dive into them deeper. It's like, if it's a game that I love I just want to get the most out of it. Assassins Creed 2 is the last game I did absolutely everything. Maybe, no, Bioshock was before that. But I just want to get all 1000 achievement points. Everything from the DLC. what's everything that I can get out of this game. And it was like proving to myself that I have milked it for everything. Yeah, it was a super interesting barometer of how much of a game you completed. Outside of the big triple A stuff, though, also on the Xbox 360 we saw this rise of indie, independent development. Getting console, well actually probably just across the board, like the real big rise of [UNKNOWN]. Especially being able to play indie games on consoles, games that went on to sell millions. Xbox Live Arcade was just an amazing platform for these really tiny games that, we mentioned Uno, but Braid and Castle Crashers, bringing The Behemoth to prominence was because of XBLA. The Summer of Arcade was a real highlight of every year while that was running, and I One of my favorite games on the entire years of 360 is Shadow Complex. It's like still waiting for that sequel, but they were real highlights that came through the live program. And that did change the landscape cuz Sony was way behind on that at that point. Yeah, for sure. Totally, and it was one of those things that like it seems insane now that they limited it to one game a week. Right. But nowadays tons of those days, tons of download-only games are coming out to PS4 and Xbox One. And there's no fanfare. Stuff just appears and you're like, oh is that, I didn't realize it was coming to PS4. Yeah. STuff I've never heard of just appears on Playstation. [LAUGH] Right, yeah, with no marketing, there's no- Yeah, it's Stuff just shows up out of nowhere. It is really crazy. Yeah, it seemed special. They almost felt like AAA games, but like sorta cheaper little, like when Meat Boy came out. I remember everyone was waiting for Super Meat Boy to come out that morning. But then, there were definitely weeks where, like, the game was awful, and you were like, man, this sucks, thinking, but I'm more than one game. I think there was a double edge to that. And it's a little bit behind the scenes, but back then we also had access to all of those games. For free. Like as things were downloaded or as things were put onto the system we our download units would let us just download. Oh wow. And play these which we don't have now with Xbox One and PS4, but it was like a away to try these out and see like well what's worth it and just have. Having immediate access to everything. There was stuff before it comes out. That stuff was really spotty cuz there were games that showed up there that never shipped. Yeah. [LAUGH] Oh wow. Someone was working on an RBI Baseball years and years ago. And at one point that showed up, and was playable. And it was like, okay Okay, is this ever gonna get announced or come out? Turns out, no. [CROSSTALK] It never got officially announced it came out, word of it kind of got out that there's supposed to be [UNKNOWN] in place to talk about stuff that appears on partner, and I feel like enough years have maybe passed that it's maybe okay now, but yeah stuff like that would happen. There was that Saint's Row downloadable game that was the guide the bullet thing. That showed up there. Oh weird. And I don't think that ever came out. Yeah that stuff was cool. And then I guess in terms of the increased power that we saw in those consoles coming out of the previous generation with the original Xbox and PlayStation 2, you know just call three then next week and what we saw as sort of the rise of the open world game. Where like you know GTA 3 had obviously done really well on PS2 and had it's own trilogy. But in the time the XBox 360 was out we got Grand Theft Auto 4, we got you know, Red Dead Redemption. Elvis calls Oblivion one of the early games was I mean, that was a real, it's funny, obviously you guys chatting about Fall Out last week in terms of some of the The technical issues with that game. Yeah. But at that time, Elder Scrolls Oblivion was, that was the cutting edge. And I remember seeing the initial screens. And then seeing what that was doing, running on that new console. Yeah. Which was only a year in at the time I think. It was very early. And it was astonishing. And it came out at a time when people were starved for something unique on that console.. So that came out and people were like, okay I don't know if they played Morrowind on the original X-Box or something. They'd never seen anything like that. There were people buying that game who would never touch a fantasy game in their life- Yeah, I mean that game obviously made Bethesda Yeah. You know, it was in the right place at the right time. And it was just a great great game. And it introduced us to microtransactions with [UNKNOWN] armor. [LAUGH] Right, yeah. So many great firsts. Exactly, and the XBox 360. Right. Okay let's, before we wrap this up, if you have to pick one, we're coming into Game of the Year territory, which is They have a horrible Sophie's Choice of trying to find out what the best game is, and a catalog of wonderful games, so going down the catch, if you had to pick one game out of the Xbox 360 that would be your favorite, Jeff first of all, what would it be? Oh, man. I'm gonna probably stick with Burnout Paradise for the 360. Rock Band, probably. [CROSSTALK] One of the Rock Band games, probably. Comes close. Like, that whole thing happened. That whole thing happened as well, yeah. Justin, what about yourself? It's probably the Coke, but I guess it, who know? [LAUGH] Like Castle Crashers. I have so many fond memories of just like sitting with friends on the couch and just plowing through that game. Like, I loved Castle Crashers. [INAUDIBLE] Well best experience left it to just fond memories, but probably the best game Red Dead Redemption, to me that's still Rockstar's best game. Last time we gave a game in here as well. Yeah. 2010? [INAUDIBLE] was right at the end of the It was [INAUDIBLE]. Tremendous game. People can't wait for a sequel. Yeah. Let me tell you about Bully though, if we're going to [LAUGH] talk about Rockstar's best game. Oh, Canis Canem Edit. Yes, Canis Canem Edit you may know it as. That's all right. I guess actually, that did come to 360. The best game that came out on the 360 was John Woo's stranglehold anyway, so it doesn't matter. [LAUGH] Rockstar Table Tennis right? [UNKNOWN]. Table Tennis was so crazy. Yeah, oh man that was so someone was color blind that game. What a huge bummer. It was all [UNKNOWN] color the ball [UNKNOWN] spin on the ball was represented by a color and they had no options for [CROSSTALK] Sure [CROSSTALK] My wife would literally look at me like it's so realistic. Yeah. [LAUGH] This is the future of gaming technology. Right. This is it, this black room with [UNKNOWN] looking at you angry. [LAUGH] That guy's a ****. Excellent, gentlemen thanks for coming on Ben, Justin and Jeff, appreciate it it. Thank you. Any time. Let us know what you think of the Xbox 360 10 years later. Are you ready to pick one up? What's your favorite game that came out during- [LAUGH] Now is the time. I know right. Yeah, super cheap and probably won't break and if it does you won't get a replacement. Yeah, what's you're favorite game on the Xbox 360? Let us know in the comment box below. [MUSIC]