Best Xbox 360 games of 2012

Best Xbox 360 games of 2012

It was a huge year for Microsoft. Despite the age of the hardware, Microsoft continues to record respectable sales figures for the Xbox 360. In November, the Xbox 360 moved an impressive 1.26 million units in the US alone, and remained in first place in console sales for the 23rd month in a row. 

But the end is near for the aging system. And while most (read: us) think there will be a new Xbox under the tree next holiday season, or early into 2014 at the latest, Microsoft’s gaming system continues to show that it still has plenty of life left in it.

This year has been a good one for the Xbox 360, with some great exclusives both through traditional retail releases and digital downloads. Her is our list of the best from 2012.

Dust: An Elysian Tail

best xbox 360 games of 2012 dust  an elysian tailBoth Sony and Microsoft have been putting a huge emphasis on their digital downloads, and it is paying off. Some of the best games of the year can be found coming from smaller developers with lower budgets but higher creativity, and Dust: An Elysian Tail is among them. The game is essentially the love child of a single developer, Dean Dodrill, who won Microsoft’s “Dream.Build.Play” challenge in 2009. From those humble beginnings, we have one of the best success stories – and one of the best games – of the year.

 Click here for our review.  

Fez

best xbox 360 games of 2012 fezAnother Xbox Live Arcade title, Fez is a puzzle/platforming game that offered puzzle fans something that was a bit unusual and bizarre, but also entertaining and appropriately challenging. It combines 2D and 3D environments in an M.C. Escher style, and took nearly five years to develop. That development cycle, featuring legal problems and budget delays, was even featured in the documentary Indie Game: The Movie. Good controls and a solid soundtrack help to make this one of the best games available to Xbox 360 gamers.

Click here for our review.  

Forza Horizons

best xbox 360 games of 2012 forza horizonThe Forza series continues to impress fans of driving games, and Forza 4 Motorsport offered the best racing simulator on the market last year. Although driving games by their nature offer a very predetermined style of gameplay, they are constantly improving and new physics are continually pushing the boundaries of what the genre can be. But beyond the physics, there are also new ways to present driving games, including a whole new world to explore. Forza Horizons takes the physics that made Forza 4 what it is, and introduces it into a whole new setting and style. The result is an incredibly addictive and attractive experience that makes it a must have for Xbox 360 driving fans.

Click here for our review.   

Halo 4

best xbox 360 games of 2012 halo 4The best known exclusive franchise in Microsoft’s arsenal returns with one of the biggest games of the year. Featuring a new developer made up almost entirely of former Bungie employees that chose to remain with the franchise, Halo 4 debuted this year to great fanfare. With an original story that marks the first part of a new trilogy, a massive co-op section that features 10 hours of additional gameplay, and the familiar multiplayer that has made converts of millions, Halo 4 is among the best of the year.

Click here for our review.   

Skyrim DLC

best xbox 360 games of 2012 skyrim dragonbornCalling this an Xbox 360 exclusive is a bit of a debate waiting to happen. Sure, Skyrim came out last year, and sure it was released on PC and PS3 as well, but the DLC is a different story. Technical issues have doomed PS3 owners to stare enviously as the 360 received all the DLC without issue, while they are still waiting and may never actually receive it. PC fans haven’t fared much better either. And with Skyrim’s DLC, that is a shame. The most recent DLC, Dragonborn, was more than just a minor little addition. It offered up to 30 hours of additional gameplay, plus a whole new section of the world to explore. The Dawnguard DLC isn’t quite as big, but it isn’t far off. Combine those and you’re talking about anywhere from 20-50 hours of gameplay that PS3 fans still aren’t sure they will ever get. That is significantly bigger than many full retail games, and earns it a spot on this list.  

 Click here for our review of Dragonborn.  

Deals

Miss Black Friday but still need an Xbox? Walmart has you covered

Black Friday and Cyber Monday have both come and gone, but you can still save some cash on a new Xbox One bundle at Walmart. Both the Xbox One S and the Xbox One X are on sale now.
Gaming

Xbox One X vs. PS4 Pro: Which console is more powerful?

Far from cooling down, the console wars are only getting more intense. We compare Microsoft's Xbox One X to Sony's PlayStation 4 Pro to help you decide which premium console is right for you.
Deals

Check out the best Xbox One deals and bundles for December 2018

Microsoft's consoles are just as capable of streaming movies as they are of playing the latest games. Check out our top Xbox One deals and bundles, which include new and upcoming triple-A games like Battlefield V and Fallout 76.
Gaming

The hottest Nintendo Switch games you can get right now

The Nintendo Switch's lineup started off small, but games have steadily released as the console continues through its second year. Here are the best Nintendo Switch games available now, from Super Mario Odyssey to Fortnite.
Computing

Turn your Raspberry Pi into a Steam streaming hub with Valve’s Steam Link app

Valve's Steam Link app is now fully supported by Raspberry PI hardware, meaning that just about anyone with a few dollars to spare can build their own Steam streaming box in a matter of minutes.
Gaming

Nintendo pulls the plug on making more SNES Classic, NES Classic systems

Nintendo extended production of the NES Classic and SNES Classic into 2018, but once the current supply of consoles is gone, the company won't be making more. Instead, you'll have to use Nintendo Switch Online.
Gaming

Fancy ‘Kingdom Hearts III’ PlayStation 4 Pro launches alongside game in January

A limited edition PlayStation 4 Pro bundle for Kingdom Hearts III will launch alongside the game in January. The system included has a special design on the side, as does the controller.
Gaming

Want to share your Xbox One games? Here's how to do it

Sharing games on modern consoles is possible, but it takes a few steps. Here's how to start sharing games on your Xbox One console, so friends and family can easily access your library.
Gaming

Here's where Xur is and what he has for wares this week in 'Destiny 2: Forsaken'

The weekly vendor in Destiny 2: Forsaken always brings Exotic weapons and armor, some of the toughest loot to find in the game. Here's everything you need to know to track down Xur: Where he is, when he shows up, and what he's stocking.
Gaming

‘Fortnite’ removes the Infinity Blade weapon after player backlash

Following player backlash over the Infinity Blade weapon's inclusion in Fortnite's battle royale mode, Epic Games decided to remove the weapon from the game completely. It was not limited to a special mode.
Gaming

Want every suit in 'Marvel's Spider-Man' for PS4? Here's how to get them all

Marvel's Spider-Man features a whopping 33 different suits for Peter Parker to wear as he swings across New York City knocking out baddies. Here are all the suits and how to unlock them.
Gaming

Everything about 'Red Dead Online', including its new microtransaction store

Red Dead Online will gradually rolled out to Red Dead Redemption 2 players via a beta. We've got all the details about the beta's suite of competitive and cooperative modes, as well as what to expect going forward.
Computing

HDR monitors are beginning to have an impact. Here are the best you can buy

HDR isn't the most common of PC monitor features and is often charged at a premium, but the list of available options is growing. These are the best HDR monitors you can buy right now.
Virtual Reality

Oculus Rift vs. HTC Vive: Prices drop, but our favorite stays the same

The Oculus Rift and HTC Vive are the two big names in the virtual reality arena, but most people can only afford one. Our comparison tells you which is best when you pit the Oculus Rift vs. HTC Vive.