Video gaming is an expensive hobby. For the gamer on a limited budget, the multitude of expensive new games available during the holiday season can limit purchase options considerably. Fortunately for Xbox 360 owners, the system’s back catalog contains many excellent titles that can be purchased for less than twenty dollars.

Here are the five best Xbox 360 titles that are available for less than twenty bucks. All of the following are available from Gamestop for less than the price of a brand new DVD.

Marvel Ultimate Alliance:Marvel Ultimate Alliance

A must play for any Marvel comics fan, Marvel Ultimate Alliance is a competitive brawler with RPG elements. Up to four players can work to thwart Dr. Doom’s evil plot simultaneously. Playable characters form a veritable who’s who of Marvel heroes, including Captain America, Wolverine, Iron Man, Spiderman, and Blade. Pretty much every major hero from the Marvel universe is playable. The main quest is sizable and the game offers a lot of replay value. Marvel Ultimate Alliance is a solid choice to accompany any Xbox 360 purchase.


Crackdown is a game that was overlooked when it first came out. It sold fairly well, but most critics attributed the good numbers to the fact that purchasing Crackdown granted players access to the Halo 3 multiplayer beta.

The truth is Crackdown is a ridiculously fun game. Players control a super-powered agent sent to quell gang violence in a sprawling open city, a la Grand Theft Auto. The agent becomes more powerful as he completes specific objectives. Eventually, players will find themselves literally able to leap tall buildings in a single bound. Not many games offer the opportunity to jump off a building into a group of enemies and then dispatch them with a combination of conventional weapons and hurled automobiles.

Dead Rising:

Capcom’s zombiefest is a unique and satisfying concept. Trapped in a mall filled with shuffling undead, the players must utilize anything and everything to fight off the zombie horde while rescuing fellow survivors and somehow figuring out just how this whole zombie apocalypse got started.

In Dead Rising, everything is a weapon. From pistols and nightsticks dropped by undead security guards to a chainsaw picked up at the hardware store or a mannequin leg from a store window, pretty much anything at hand can be used to hold off the mall’s multitude of slow-moving brain munchers. Few things in gaming are as satisfying as tearing through a crowd of zombies with a lawnmower.

Half Life 2: The Orange Box:

This Half Life collection is actually five games in one package: Half Life 2 along with the expansions Episode 1 and Episode 2, Team Fortress 2, and Portal. The mind-bending puzzle game Portal is worth the price of admission by itself. Add to that the amazing story and innovative shooting elements of Half Life 2 and it’s expansions along with the multiplayer smash Team Fortress 2 and it’s difficult to see why anyone would pass this game up, especially when it can be purchased for under twenty bucks.

Saints Row:

The recent release of Saints Row 2 has renewed gamer interest in the city of Stillwater. Saints Row was the original open world sandbox-style game on the Xbox 360. The game’s innovative character customization and multitude of hilarious and interesting player activities made it a big hit when it was first released, and the gameplay is still compelling.

Driving, shooting, robbing, and looting through the city is a great time. The Saints Row series seems to take itself a bit less seriously than Grand Theft Auto, the emphasis here is more on mayhem and fun, and Saints Row delivers a huge amount of both for less than twenty dollars.

Any Xbox 360 gamer on a budget can’t go wrong by picking up one or more of these titles. Marvel Ultimate Alliance, Crackdown, Dead Rising, Half Life 2: The Orange Box, and Saints Row are all fantastic games, and all can be picked up for a very reasonable price.



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