Casual multiplayer games for the Xbox 360
November 14, 2011 5:15 AM   Subscribe

Help me find casual multiplayer games for the Xbox 360.

(I know this sort of question has been asked before, but not, as far as I can tell, in the last year, and things can change rapidly in that time span.)

I've just bought an Xbox 360. I'd like to play some online multiplayer games. The problem: I'm not generally very good at arcade games, and I don't have the time or inclination to get good at them. I want something I can just drop into, have a happy hour or two mashing some buttons, and then log off again.

I like FPS, racing games and sports games in solo mode, but I find them totally miserable experiences in online multiplayer. (For example, my experience of playing Unreal Tournament was spawn; run around a bit; run into someone else; get shot; die.) Fifa 12 looks great but it's far too complicated to play online. I'm not particularly interested in puzzle or strategy games. There must be something else out there? What are the currently most played multiplayers games on Live Arcade (which I haven't really explored yet)?

BTW - I haven't added any Xbox friends yet. I'm "salmacis2" if anyone wants to friend me for this sort of online experience..
posted by salmacis to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (13 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
important question or you, do you want to continue playing/be "casual" or do you want to keep playing/get better at the games?

also, when it comes to FPS (call of duty) the more you play, the better you will get as you learn the maps, etc

a suggestion for a game that may be interesting/fun for you is battlefield 3 (giant bomb quicklook)

another game, that sounds perfect for you if you were playing on PC, is team fortress 2. it is on 360, but has not really been updated due to Microsoft's policies (wanting $$ for it, sizes, etc)

i know this does not help much, but a game like ModNation Racers (PS3) or Mario Kart Wii may be better options for you...

It also may be worthwhile to play Tiger Woods on 360 -- not sure how the online community is but is an easy one to play, then step away from then play again?

posted by knockoutking at 5:26 AM on November 14, 2011

Best answer: I had a pretty good time with Castle Crashers on xbox live arcade, which is a comic beat-em-up game in the style of double dragon, but with a light rpg overlay. You can play multiplayer locally or find other players online. The multiplayer game is mostly co-op, with some competitive elements tossed in. It's definitely the sort of game that is good for playing in one or two hour session, sine most levels are fairly short and progress is made and saved constantly.
posted by burden at 5:38 AM on November 14, 2011 [2 favorites]

Red Dead Redemption has a pretty fun and casual multiplayer mode. And the singleplayer game is amazing.
posted by empath at 5:44 AM on November 14, 2011

Best answer: I've heard Castle Crashers is really good fun if you play with friends. I also can't stop playing Peggle. I play online matches quite a bit.
I really enjoyed Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light, and still play it with my son. Lots of shooting, a bit of exploration and light puzzle solving. All of these games are on Xbox arcade.

I'll send you a friend request. - foomoo
posted by Frasermoo at 5:52 AM on November 14, 2011

Best answer: Left 4 Dead 1 and 2 are pretty fun FPS type games. In the campaign portion you are working WITH up to three other players against a horde of xombies, so there isn't that "oh man these guys just keep immediately head-shotting me" type thing. I'm pretty pathetic at multiplayer shooters, but had a lot of fun playing L4D1 with online strangers and buddies. The gameplay leads to teamwork, as opposed to griefing.

I'm getting L4D2 from Goozex as we speak, so send me a friend request if you pick it up and want to run screaming and crying from zombies with me. (tag: JoelPilgrim)
posted by joelhunt at 6:11 AM on November 14, 2011 [1 favorite]

Guardian Heroes
posted by Bangaioh at 6:11 AM on November 14, 2011

nthing Left 4 Dead 1 and 2, Red Dead Redemption (3rd person, though) and Battlefield 3. I personally can't stand Call of Duty because there are so many extremely good players or cheaters that always seem to squeeze off headshots a split second after seeing me.

Another great one is Borderlands, although you can really get into modding your own weapons (Grenade launcher machine gun!).

Gears of War has a compelling storyline and fun multiplayer exclusive to 360, but it is 3rd person. The 3rd one just came out in September and is the best of the series.
posted by Giggilituffin at 8:02 AM on November 14, 2011

Scott pilgrim is a good multi-player drop in game. Much in the style of River city ransom and castle crashers.

Geometry wars is good two player fun.
posted by BishopFistwick at 8:08 AM on November 14, 2011

Best answer: With the big multiplayer type games, there is a noticeable life span, Right when the game starts there is a large group of people at the same level, with the super serious & super skilled folks quickly ascending to the top, and then after a while, the more casual fans drift away. If a game has been out for a while and it's competitive, its usually extremely frustrating to try to break in to, the people still playing it will be so much better. And then some of the old games end up not having anyone online to play. Even with castle crashers (which is awesome) I'd think most folks playing online are using high level characters and impatiently just buzzsawing through the levels, but I dont really know and it seems to always be selling well.

You might want to check out Dungeon Defenders, the interface is sort of overwhelming at first but its made for co-op and I think it'd work with random folks, and it's still not an awful time to get into Battlefield 3, though I'd suggest sticking to Rush mode at first (and having a little patience).

Also, you can see what games are most popular here.
posted by yeahyeahyeahwhoo at 8:26 AM on November 14, 2011

Castle Crashers was fun. The Left 4 Dead games are fun, but I can't stand first-person games on consoles, I'm too much of a keyboard-and-mouse guy.

Keep in mind that to play pretty much anything multiplayer on X360, you'll need a paid Gold account.

I am still lamenting the demise of 1 vs. 100 on Xbox Live. That was just so much fun, and I'd often team up with 2 or 3 other friends and make sure we were all playing together. (I'm told it was shut down for financial reasons; interestingly, 1v100 was the only thing that made me care about what my XBL avatar looked like, and I kept spending points on stupid hats and t-shirts. Once they killed 1v100, I quit buying stuff for my avatar. Go figure.)
posted by xedrik at 9:44 AM on November 14, 2011

Response by poster: Castle Crashers seems to be the most suggested answer here. It's not really my favourite type of game, but it looks decent. I've downloaded the demo, and I may upgrade it. If I can find a cheap second hand copy of Left 4 Dead I'll try that as well.

Thanks to all who replied.
posted by salmacis at 6:58 AM on November 16, 2011

Since you're considering Castle Crashers, I really, really suggest you try Guardian Heroes instead. It's arguably the finest example of the genre to date and the only reason more people don't know/talk about it is because it's originally a 1996 Saturn game. The XBLA port was handled by Treasure themselves and is superb.
posted by Bangaioh at 8:41 AM on November 16, 2011 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Thanks, will do!
posted by salmacis at 1:22 AM on November 21, 2011

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