The Xbox One announced backwards compatibility last year, thrilling Xbox 360 owners with game libraries they wanted to keep. And, with the announcement of ten more games, the library has grown substantially. Here are the backwards compatible games you may have missed the first time, and that you need to play.
The Behemoth hilariously reinvents the four-player co-op beat-’em-up, mixing classic ’80s arcade gameplay with a surprisingly deep strategy system and RPG elements. The goofy sense of humor and tributes to games ranging from Golden Axe to Super Mario World combine with the hilariously inventive art style to make a game that’s a blast to play as well as look at.
Just Cause 2
Avalanche’s beloved explosion-fest just does what every video game wishes it could do; make everything explodable and tell players to go nuts. Running around a vast open world blowing things up for giggles shouldn’t be this entertaining, and yet, it is.
The classic “bullet-hell” shooter of the ’80s gets a smart reinvention in this 2001 classic. The idea is simple; you can flip the “polarity” of your ship at any time, and absorb that color of bullets. But you’d better be quick with your thumbs; they don’t call it “bullet hell” for nothing.
Yes, the N64 classic is on the Xbox One, courtesy of Microsoft buying out Rare. Building on the FPS ideas they developed in GoldenEye, Rare’s game follows secret agent Joanna Dark as she unwinds a vast corporate conspiracy. The mix of gameplay between FPS action and stealth, combined with great level design and objectives, make this one a game you can finally play if you missed it the first time.
DICE’s offbeat first-person platformer received a richly deserved pile of critical accolades when it came out, but those unfortunately weren’t matched by sales. Now’s the time to pick this game up, especially if you only know DICE from the Battlefield series. A host of subtle, smart decisions make this one of the best platformers of the last console generation, and a game that remains unique years after it came out.
Beyond Good and Evil HD
Beyond Good and Evil was a revolutionary mix of platforming, stealth, and action when it came out. It follows Jade, a reporter looking for evidence about an alien invasion, and of course, uncovering more than she bargained for. The game was a commercial failure when it came out, but its reputation has only grown over the years as it’s been re-released.
The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings
The Witcher 3 is the best of the series, but The Witcher 2 helped define the franchise and is an excellent game in its own right. Following the mystical smart-ass Geralt as he tries to prove he’s not the king-killer in the title, it’s a fun RPG with some witty writing to go with it.
South Park: The Stick of Truth
South Park: The Stick of Truth pulls off two very difficult jobs: One, it delivers classic ’80s style RPG action with deep mechanics and strategy. Two, it manages to perfectly evoke the tone and humor of a really good South Park episode. Everything from the ridiculous Facebook statuses to Cartman’s casual bigotry is right there and absolutely hilarious, as the show rips into stale video game tropes and takes aim at everything from Dungeons and Dragons to Lord of the Rings.
If you can’t find a game you like yet, keep an eye out. The backwards compatibility list is growing constantly, and adding excellent games every month.