Top 10 Indie Games for Xbox 360

Visitors play with the XBOX 360 at the Microsoft booth

Junko Kimura / Getty Images

The Indie Games (formerly Community Games) section of the Xbox Live Marketplace is overshadowed by the XBLA and the rest of Xbox Live, but it occasionally has some really great games that you can get for dirt-cheap.

There's lots and lots (and lots) of pure unfiltered garbage, too, however, which makes finding decent games a chore. But here are our picks for ten Xbox 360 Indie games that should provide you with a fun play experience.


Blow is a fascinating game that involves bubbles and fans, and it is your job to place the fans in the correct spots to blow the bubble to the goal. You can change the temperature of the air the fans blow as well as the speed, among a few other gameplay nuances, and the result is surprisingly addictive and fun. It doesn’t hurt that it looks and sounds amazingly good.


Twin-stick shooters wore out their welcome on the Xbox 360, but I MAED A GAM3 W1TH Z0MB1ES!!!1 justifies its existence with a few key features:

  1. It has zombies.
  2. Addictive power-up fueled gameplay.
  3. The best music ever. It is fun and crazy awesome just for the music. The game only lasts about 13 minutes (as long as the song lasts), but it is fun enough to play over and over again.

Time Viking!!!!! And Space Raptor

Made by the same folks that made I MAED A GAM3 W1TH Z0MB1ES!!!1, Time Viking brings the same simple gameplay paired with a rocking soundtrack as its predecessor.

This time it is more of a 2D shooter game in which you build a tower to the moon out of the corpses of your fallen enemies. Sounds awesome, right? The music is amazing, the presentation is solid, and the gameplay is a ton of fun.


Another twin-stick shooter, but, again, one that makes good use of a gimmick.

Everything in Groov has a musical sound associated with it, so every shot makes a sound and each enemy type makes a distinct sound. So, by shooting enemies, you create music. The tempo changes, new enemies are introduced, and your song becomes increasingly more complex. It is really amazing and worth a look.

Mount Your Friends

One of the funniest multiplayer games ever is Mount Your Friends. The idea sounds weird — you play as a succession of speedo-wearing musclemen who climb on top of each other to build a tower — but it is freaking hilarious and surprisingly fun.

Sit back and enjoy the sweet, sweet gameplay as you and your friends try to build a tower of dudes. Seriously, try it. It's a ton of fun. 

Kodu Game Lab

Kodu is a simple game creation tool. You make game worlds filled with enemies and obstacles and then run characters through your newly created lands. You build everything with a clean and simple visual interface, so it is pretty darn easy to make some impressive stuff.

Worth a download just to see what you can come up with.


Solar is a “God Game” on a bigger scale than we’ve ever seen before. You aren't just building a civilization; you are building a complete solar system, and that is amazing.

You start as a sun, and you fly around the galaxy attracting planets and the planets, in turn, attract moons. If you make the planet absorb a moon, it evolves (even up to the point it has space travelers who come out and protect your solar system from other “aliens”).

By absorbing planets, your sun becomes more powerful and can attract and hold more planets in orbit. Solar is really slick, awesome, and addictive.

Miner: Dig Deep

Miner is a neat little game where you are a miner and have to dig down into the Earth to find precious metals and gems. You then take those treasures up to the surface to sell them so you can buy better equipment and improve your mining.

It is simple but amazingly fun.


ZP2K9 is a 2D side-scrolling deathmatch shooter. It is sort of like a normal platforming game but jacked up on deathmatch steroids.

Players can walk on walls and ceilings and there are a ton of weapons to use. When you get a group playing on Xbox Live it is pretty darn good.

A Fading Melody

A Fading Melody is a side-scrolling 2D platformer where your character must defeat enemies to brighten the world.

The graphics are clean and simple, and while the gameplay doesn’t push the genre into new territory, the music, interesting story (that is slickly told through text that scrolls along above you as you explore), overall presentation make for a pretty good game.