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Top 5 Xbox 360 games

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Now that the previous generation is slowly starting to fade away in the rearview mirror, classics from the bygone systems are slowly starting to cement their legacy over time. Here's a few of my favorites from Microsoft's Xbox 360.

5. 'Shadow Complex'

Let's face it, 'Super Metroid' and 'Castlevania: Symphony of the Night' are undisputed champions of the exploration/upgrade/more exploration genre colloquially known as 'metroidvanias.' However, sometimes that magic can be remade and refined, and when it is, you get the love letter known as 'Shadow Complex.' If imitation is the best form of flattery, then 'Shadow Complex' is probably Grima Wormtongue; however, it brings enough of the 'Metroid' magic to its near-future tale of an underground lair of civil war inciters. Metroidvania fans should not pass this one up.

4. 'Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare'

I know, I know - as a lifelong 'Halo' fan, this may seem sacrilegious, but 'CoD 4' pushed the boundaries of everything we knew about making both a bombastic, action-packed campaign coupled with a revolutionary, addictive multiplayer. Suddenly, there was a new king in the FPS arena, and it was filled to the brim with gut-wrenching cutscenes, breathtaking missions and, of course, the insanely popular multiplayer that introduced us to the idea of a killstreak. Hats off to Infinity Ward for turning the FPS genre on its head.

3. 'Geometry Wars (1 and 2)'

OK, so maybe I'm cheating a bit, but when the 360 first launched, there wasn't a whole lot to play. Your options were pretty much limited to 'Call of Duty 2,' 'Perfect Dark Zero' and a top-down Robotron-esque game called 'Geometry Wars.' This little game sparked a whole new high score rush on Xbox Live Arcade, and its sequel built on everything that made the first game good. However, probably the first 'Geometry Wars' has one of the most interesting accomplishments of making a three-minute techno loop entertaining for 15 to 20 minutes at a time.

2. 'Final Fantasy XIII'

Go ahead. Send me hate mail about how this game destroyed the 'Final Fantasy' series once and for all. I will accept it as a burden of love. I absolutely adored this installment in the perennial RPG mainstay, maybe not quite for the incredibly confusing story, but for the fantastic battle system that felt fresh and fast-paced while still retaining the strategy of the older, turn-based affairs. Even though I'll admit that the game did feel like a series of corridors at times, the visuals never let up for a second and the world that Square-Enix built looked amazing. Will I play through it again? Maybe, maybe not, but the ride it took me on when it first released still sticks with me to this day.

1. 'Halo 3'

Did you really, really expect anything else at the top? From concluding the cliffhanger that 'Halo 2' left us on to building on the award-winning multiplayer, 'Halo 3' led the charge into the next-gen Xbox Live experience. Sounds, visuals, gameplay - Bungie's baby had it all. With the addition of Forge mode, fans could now build their own versions of maps (and in some cases, entirely new gametypes), adding years of replayability to the already-solid multiplayer. For the seventh generation of consoles, there's still no better LAN or online experience than 'Halo 3.'

Honorable mentions: 'Earth Defense Force 2017,' 'Battlefield: Bad Company 2,' 'Gears of War 2,' 'Halo: Reach (after the MLG v7 update)'

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