The Best Xbox 360 Platformers

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Released in 2005, fans finally got their hands on the next generation of Xbox, the Xbox 360. This brand-new console came with a slew of fantastic new features that have become standard ever since. The Xbox 360 boasted all-new graphics, immersive sound, and updated online features. Gamers could now communicate like never before in Xbox Live Parties, connecting gamers from around the world. The 360 also gave the option of buying games digitally, allowing players to access any game pretty much on-demand. The new line-up of games blew players away with their realism and level of immersion, giving gamers some of the most memorable experiences to date.

Platformers have always been a pretty easy genre to pick up and play for both casual and hardcore gamers. Anyone can enjoy some fun running, jumping, and exploring strange new environments. Some of the most popular series to date are platformers and the Xbox 360 had no shortage of memorable and innovative platformers either, especially with the rise of indie development. Fans of classic platformers were now releasing their own takes on the genre to the Xbox Live Arcade, giving players both the nostalgia of older games while still providing new gameplay features that excited fans.


One of the first indie games to hit it big, Braid was an extremely innovative platformer that mixed elements of classic platformers while also adding awesome new quirks to the genre. The beautiful visuals match this game perfectly, and everything feels perfectly executed.

Braid is filled to the brim with puzzles, which are solved by manipulating time. These puzzles are challenging yet rewarding when completed. To top it off, the story of this title is an engaging twist on clichés from older platformers, but does not feel cheesy at all. Braid shows what an indie developer with a dream can accomplish, and is proof that even a genre as formulaic and long-standing as platformers can be reimagined into something innovative.

Super Meat Boy

Another indie title, Super Meat Boy also manages to put a twist on the platformer genre. Instead of embracing the ease of access that platformers are known for, Super Meat Boy exists to make your life a hell. Every level increases in difficulty that will test your reflexes and skill.

The goal of Super Meat Boy is to save your girlfriend, Bandage Girl, from the evil Doctor Fetus by completing a wide array of challenging and fast-paced levels. The developers of this title paid homage to other indie games by giving the player plenty of opportunities to find easter eggs or play stylized levels. Super Meat Boy is not for the faint of heart, but is extremely rewarding and exciting.


LIMBO is proof that video games are not only entertainment but an art form. LIMBO is a depressing walk through purgatory on the quest to find your sister. Along your journey you will come across mind-boggling puzzles, creepy set-pieces, and sinister enemies.

The entire game is stylized in black and white, really adding to the tone of this title. Each life is trial and error, giving the player plenty of opportunities to recover from brutal deaths and solve a puzzle. LIMBO is another testament to why indie development can rival even triple A game studios and how gaming can be a true artistic expression.

Mark of the Ninja

Created by the same developers behind Don’t Starve, Mark of the Ninja is an awesome stealth oriented platformer that makes you actually feel like a ninja. This game makes use of light and sound to add an extra bit of realism to stealth missions. For instance, running instead of walking could alert enemies or standing too close to a light source could give away your position.

Mark of the Ninja is a great mix of styles as well, with ancient martial art traditions mixed with modern day technology. This title is great for players who want a little strategy in their platformers and generally just want to feel like an awesome stealthy, killing machine.

Rayman Legends

Rayman is once again on a quest to save the Teensies in exciting running, jumping, and arm-less punching action. As players progress and save Teensies, new levels and worlds will be unlocked to explore. Rayman Legends also features four player cooperative play, so grab your friends and try to collect the most Lums.

There is an almost unlimited supply of levels to choose from, with plenty of classic levels, remix levels, and even rhythm levels which are extremely fun. Rayman Legends has plenty of the classic platformer action to keep fans entertained as well as plenty of new quirks to change things up a bit.


From this list you can probably gather that the Xbox 360 was home to some of the best indie titles ever, and Fez is another one. Gomez, the main character, lives in your typical 2D platformer world until he uncovers the third dimension. Throughout the game, Gomez will change between dimensions to uncover new secrets and solve plenty of exciting and challenging puzzles.

Fez is full of secrets, easter eggs, and exciting content to uncover, making this game one of the most enjoyable gaming experiences of the generation. Fez could not be recommended enough and is a blast through and through.


Once again, an indie title, Spelunky adds another twist on the platforming genre that is exciting and punishing. Instead of dying and restarting at the last checkpoint, you have to restart your game. Spelunky follows the rouge-lite formula, giving players a new level layout, enemy spawns, and secret area locations each time they restart.

This title plays almost like an Indiana Jones film, where the player will explore ruins and caves filled with deadly traps and priceless treasure. Spelunky is a great platformer for players who want a little bit of challenge and virtually infinite replayability. No two games are the same.


A Flash game brought to the Xbox Live Arcade, N+ is a simplistic, yet challenging, platformer where players must run, jump and climb from deadly obstacles. There are over 300 levels of exciting acrobatic action and occasional puzzles that will keep players on their toes. To top it off, there is hilarious ragdoll physics that lightens the blow of dying a little bit.

N+ also features cooperative and competitive multiplayer modes to change things up a bit. N+ is another awesome and challenging platformer with plenty of quirks and content to keep players entertained for hours.

  • Updated September 4, 2020