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The Top Xbox 360 games we want to play on Xbox One

Microsoft has finally announced the first 104 Xbox 360 games that will be backwards compatible on Xbox One. While that sounds like a lot of games, it's really only a drop in the bucket compared to the Xbox 360's overall library of over 1,700 titles. As such, many popular and fan-requested titles naturally won't be backwards compatible when the feature launches on November 12th. In fact, many of the top 20 most-requested games are not on the launch list!

Don't despair, though, Xbox One owners. We know that Microsoft will make more games backwards compatible in the future. Still, the uncertainty of which Xbox 360 titles will be playable on the Xbox One haunts some of us to our very cores. So read on to find out which games each member of the Windows Central staff most wants to become backwards compatible!

Paul Acevedo

Catherine

Catherine from Atlus:

The Xbox 360 has its fair share of quirky Japanese games, something almost entirely absent from the Xbox One lineup so far. Of those wacky but interesting titles, Catherine is the one I'd most like to play. Catherine's art, premise, and even gameplay are highly unique.

The game stars Vincent, a man who becomes involved with two women: his girlfriend Katherine and the mysterious Catherine. Vincent soon begins to have nightmares that threaten to kill him if he can't uncover their source. The gameplay mixes adventure elements and extensive character conversations with challenging puzzle-platforming segments that take place in the nightmare realm.

Intriguing nature aside, Catherine also went on sale for quite cheap recently. I'm sure many gamers who picked it up would like to play it on their Xbox Ones.

Earth Defense Force 2025

Earth Defense Force 2025 from Sandlot and D3 Publisher:

The second game in the EDF series was easily the best, at least until an enhanced version came along for PlayStation 4. This series enjoys a simple but fun premise: armies of giant insects, monsters, and robots threaten the earth. Only the heroic Earth Defense Force can stop them.

Players will select from four distinct characters (the all-around Ranger, the support-oriented Air Raider, the flying Wing Diver, and the slow but powerful Fencer) and battle the alien menace across more than 80 levels. Not only do hordes of enemies swarm the screen, but nearly every building is completely destructible. Half the fun comes from leveling the cities you're sent to save.

EDF 2025 is also a grinding fan's dream game. Each character has dozens of weapons to collect via random drops, and you're encouraged to beat every level on five difficulty levels to build up and find more stuff. With 2-player split-screen and 4-player online co-op, EDF 2025 is still one of my favorite Xbox 360 games. Plus it's cheap on Amazon! (opens in new tab)

See our EDF 2025 review for more details.

Final Fantasy XIII

Final Fantasy XIII (and sequels) from Square-Enix:

FFXIII made headlines when it launched on Xbox 360 in addition to PlayStation 3. The 360 version had to come on three DVD-ROMs due to its massive size and abundance of FMV movie sequences. Unfortunately, the Xbox version's FMV, graphics, and sound suffered a slight downgrade due to the smaller storage capacity of DVDs compared to Blu-rays. But I'm here to tell you that stuff doesn't matter; it still looks and sounds great, even today.

The thirteenth Final Fantasy is somewhat maligned for its story, area design, and battle system. I have to admit, the story is incomprehensible at times. Characters seem to talk a_t each other instead of _to each other, lessening the drama. And the map designs really are very simplistic compared to other RPGs. But the combat system actually makes battles speedy and fun, with players switching each character's roles on the fly as battle conditions change. The upgrade system is creative and fun too.

It might not be the best Final Fantasy game, but FFXIII is still a huge and beautiful game. Patient gamers who stick around past the slow opening hours will find a lot to enjoy. Plus the Xbox One needs all the JRPGs it can get!

Forza Horizon

Forza Horizon from Microsoft:

Xbox One already has Forza Horizon 2, one of my all-time favorite racing games. But once you beat Horizon 2 and all of its DLC, you're likely going to long for more of that racing goodness. The first Horizon would fill that gap nicely. It shares much of the same DNA as Horizon 2, but both games differ in several key ways.

For starters, the first Horizon takes place in Colorado, USA rather than Europe. Neither location is better than the other, but they complement each other nicely. Horizon also has a much more street racing vibe than its successor, complete with underground-themed races that pay out handsomely in credits. And the first Horizon offers five car-specific challenges for every single car in the game. These mini-objectives give you lots of fun things to do between races.

Forza Horizon also looks pretty good despite its age. My one complaint is that the in-game radio DJs are total nobs. But I still play Horizon to this day, and hopefully Xbox One owners will eventually get that same opportunity as well.

The Witcher 2

The Witcher 2 from CD Projekt Red:

The Witcher 3 is here, and it's one of the best action-role-playing games of all time. It completely crushes the first two games in the series, not to mention most other RPGs. But I can see a lot of gamers who become enthralled with protagonist Geralt and his exploits wanting to learn more about the events preceding Witcher 3.

Luckily Witcher 2 still holds up fairly well, even if it lacks the massive open world of the third game. The story of Geralt and his friends is just as fascinating in Witcher 2 as in part 3, with lots of interesting sidequests, drama, and mature moments. And players will make meaningful choices that affect the outcome of the game, just as in Witcher 3.

The Witcher 2 sets Geralt on a much narrower course than an open-world game would, with the areas that he can visit limited by the current chapter of the story. And the combat is a bit clunky. But anyone who has spent time with Witcher 3 should be able to ease into this one without much trouble.

Hopefully fans of the Witcher will get a chance to explore this portion of Geralt's life on their Xbox Ones sooner rather than later.

More Windows Central staff picks

Left 4 Dead 2

L4D (Image credit: Valve)

Left 4 Dead 2

John Callaham

  • Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 from Activision
  • Grand Theft Auto IV from Rockstar and 2K
  • Left 4 Dead 2 from Valve
  • Portal 2 from Valve
  • Red Dead Redemption from Rockstar and 2K

Jez Corden

  • The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim from Bethesda
  • Fallout New Vegas from Obsidian and Bethesda
  • Mass Effect 2 from Bioware and Electronic Arts
  • Mass Effect 3 from Bioware and Electronic Arts
  • XCOM from Firaxis and 2K

Richard Devine

  • Batman: Arkham Asylum from Rocksteady and Warner Bros
  • Grand Theft Auto IV from Rockstar and 2K
  • Homefront from THQ (now owned by Deep Silver)
  • Project Gotham Racing 4 from Bizarre Creations and Microsoft
  • Red Dead Redemption (and Undead Nightmare) from Rockstar and 2K

Jonathan Dollison

  • Alan Wake from Remedy and Microsoft
  • Battlefield Bad Company 2 from Electronic Arts
  • Dead Space from Visceral and Electronic Arts
  • Portal 2 from Valve
  • Splinter Cell: Conviction from Ubisoft

Hitman Absolution

Hitman Absolution

Mark Guim

  • Hitman series from Square-Enix

George Ponder

  • NCAA Football series from Electronic Arts

UNO

Honorable mention

It didn't make it into our lists, but one early XBLA title maintains a small but loyal following that simply can't be denied. That game is UNO from Carbonated Games and Microsoft.

The original UNO offered a simple and accurate recreation of the classic card game that is totally not boring to play in real life. It only cost five bucks, and it even supported the Xbox 360's short-lived camera peripheral. Many gamers got their first looks at other nude people thanks to UNO, making it an important part of their life development.

When you get right down to it, UNO was great for relaxing with friends in party chat, and it only cost five bucks. Although Microsoft might not have the UNO license anymore, I know for a fact that loyal reader Sgt Torrente and many others would love to play it again on Xbox One.

Read Dead Redemption

Read Dead Redemption

What 360 games do you wish were backwards compatible?

How do you like our backwards compatibility, picks, guys, gals, and pals? Be sure to share your top five Xbox 360 games that you'd like to play on Xbox One as well!

Paul Acevedo is the Games Editor at Windows Central. A lifelong gamer, he has written about videogames for over 15 years and reviewed over 350 games for our site. Follow him on Twitter @PaulRAcevedo. Don’t hate. Appreciate!

160 Comments
  • Don't laugh...OK...Kinect Party...But I believe the Kinect Games can't be ported... But really want Portal, Portal 2...most if not all of the classic Arcade Games and their updated versions...​Oh, and Kinect Sports, the original. Great party game.
  • Why not?
  • When this started to become news, I thought I read in a previous Windows Central article that Kinect games would never be included on the compatability list. Would love to be wrong...
  • Puhlease, can someone mention Mortal Kombat (last one to come out on X360)
  • The original kinect peripheral runs on completely different architecture/design from the Kinect 2.0, which was made in-house. They are simply incompatible with one another.
  • What UNO offered was dicks, lots of dicks.
  • Referenced in the article! ;)
  • Lmao what's wrong with people?
  • Hey Paul! Quick question. How come I never get notified about user replies through email or anything? I've always had it enabled through the app. Using win10 mobile etc. Ty in advance :)
  • Davis, it looks like there might be a typo in the email address on your account. Instead of "windows," I see "winfows." Unfortunately I can't change it. You might ask Daniel about it and see if he has that ability.
  • Ah.. That explains it! Alright. Thank you Paul for checking that out for me.ill try bugging him!
  • It would be awesome to have those Kinect titles be backwards compatible.
  • Glad I'm not the only one whose been thinking about the kinect games. I would love to play the old dance central series on the xbox one but as you said, dont think that is feasible... sadly
  • IKR? I would LOVE to be able to carry 'Star Wars Kinect' and 'Kinect Disneyland Adventures' over to my Xbox One!
  • Skyrim hands down.
  • I would agree with you but I can't get myself playing it on a console. Those games are made for mods and better visuals than it offers on the older consoles. For me ofc... I game mostly on my Xbox too but that game had to be taken advantage to the extreme. And why I'm happy Bethesda brought mods already with Fallout 4!
    Elder scrolls Next with mods for Xbox one is now mostly a given. GG! XD
    THAT, I'll get on my console
  • Red Faction: Guerilla, Red Dead Redemption, Mafia 2, GTA series, Fallout: NV
  • What is the benefit of playing on xb one? Better graphics?
  • The graphics are the same. But you do have some of the current-gen features like screenshots, recording, and streaming. Also you don't need to have two consoles (provided the BC catalogue is enough for you).
  • For me, it would be parting with my 360 and having less "stuff" in my living room. :)
  • I would be parting with my PS3. Posted via the Galaxy Note 5
  • Not keeping a second console around, meaning you could take advantage of an Xbox One trade-in deal and not lose that 360 library.
  • A lot of people bought many games for the 360 and didn't wanna move to the xbox one because they would be losing them and would have to start a new collection of games. Backward compatibility solves that. Some people cant afford to buy both.
  • Most games I own aren't on the backwards compatibility list yet. So this doesn't help me any. But it is a small step in the right direction.
  • Snaping apps next to your game, like TV
  • I can say "Xbox On, Xbox Go To Fallout 3" and have my entire entertainment center powered on and fallout 3 loaded without even touching my controller, that is why :)
  • Also, not everyone owns a Xbox 360 but some might still like to play some of its games on their Xbox One. Because they're never going to be properly ported, so emulation it is.  
  • That's great. Never thought of it like that. I bought a ps3, then a one, so I missed out on 360 games with my PS3. Now I can play 360 games!
  • Oh man... my first stop if I were you would be Gears of War Ultimate Edition.  You get GoW 1, 2, 3, and Judgement using backwards compatibilityif you buy it before the end of the year.  That's an awful lot of awesome games for $40...
  • First of, you can take out of the way the 360 either it's in your living room or bedroom. Secondly its a selling point for those that aren't financially capable to afford another console. This is a huge push when you know you can trade in your 360 and get the extra features like streaming and recording while playing them on the Xbox one.
    There are also some loading and texture streaming improvements depending on the game at hand.
    Then you have the new controller if you like it. Still waiting for me elite xD
  • Funny, I just saw Catherine at GameStop a few days ago. Never heard of it, just saw the cover and went "WtF? Japan..." Of course it's a game the resident Avocado is into. 3 games I want: Reach, NFS: Most Wanted (the first), and NFS Carbon. I just want the whole Halo story on the One (bring Wars as well, I don't care), while NFS went off a steep cliff after Carbon, and I would like a nice arcade racer to play.
  • Halo reach, Tomb Raider 2013, the classic Ninja turtles games and the remake, far cry 3, bayonetta.
  • Tomb Raider has the definitive edition
  • And it has a Xbox One version. Which was free on Xbox Live Gold some months back.
  • And it was free last month with Gold.
  • Few games on BC list have Xbox One versions
  • Halo Reach ! Already have the game ready next to my one, just counting the days! I kove Halo for coop and 5 sucked so bad, we will reply Reach again!
  • Tales of Vesperia.
  • ^ this
  • COD MW2 and RedDead for me
  • Lost Odyssey Blue Dragon Red Dead Redemption   That is all. :)
  • I agree
  • Lost Odyssey is a must.
  • I concur
  • GEARS OF WAR 1-3
  • All the gears are in bc already
  • Zone of the Enders HD Collection :D
  • ALL the Assassin's Creed titles not just AC II. GTA IV would also be nice since I never actually played it properly as the PC port was a piece of sh*t. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Especially Rogue. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Wasn't Chaos Theory an original Xbox game?
  • Fixed!
  • Surprised Splosion Man is not on there. The Trials games would be a nice addition, and they were on that leaked list last week. Orange Box would be nice. I never bought it, but I feel that I owe it to myself to have another go at Half Life. Didn't like it the last time I played it, but I am happy to have another go. Battlefield Bad Company 2 would be sweet. On a partially connected note, I would love Re-Volt from the original Xbox. I must have played a 1000 hours of that on the Dreamcast, it was a staple for anyone visiting my flat around 1999. People still ask me about it. Ilomilo would be good for Mrs P, she loves the little puzzlers.  
  • I like the Sposion Man games, but a little goes a long way. They're just too hard for me to want to play them much.
  • You know, I nearly didn't add it in my list for that very reason. 200 to 1 was good, I'd like to see that again.
  • Upvote for Ilomilo :-)  (I'd say it was for my girlfriend, but hell, I sometimes like the little puzzlers too.)
  • I liked it, but preferred Portal. Took me a while to get the music achievement in Ilomilo.
  • The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Dark Athena/Assault on Butcher Bay! lolz, totally mashed iKnow ;]~)
  • I don't get why people say the list is disappointing. There is Mass Effect, there is red dead redemption. Nuff said.
  • People like to complain
  • Red Dead Redemption is not on the BC list, so you shot a hole in your argument there.
  • Red Dead Redemption isn't on the list. However, Mass Effect and Fable 2 & 3 are on the list. So there's that.
  • Only Fable 2 right? No Fable 3 from what I remember.
  • You're right. But Fable II was the better game anyway :)
  • The obvious answer is that some of us don't care about those games.  For example, I want Street Fighter, Call of Duty, and Resident Evil games.  That's the problem MS has of course... going to be impossible to please everybody...
  • I want GTA IV, Splinter Cell convection & blacklist.
    ___
    On an unrelated note, did you guys delete an article?
  • Yes we did.
  • Oooh okay, I thought I was starting to imagine things (long day + lack of sleep).
  • Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, Grand Theft Auto IV, Red Dead Redemption, Streets of Rage Trilogy (XBLA), and Duke Nukem 3D (XBLA). Maybe Fallout New Vegas too, since I never played that.
  • Glad someone agrees. Revengeance was a beautiful game, even if it was different from Solid.
  • All the old school games I bought, Dig Dug, Ms. Pac Man ect, they are good for a quick 15-30 minute gaming session, be nice to snap TV next to them too.
  • Red Dead Redemption, the Hitman games,  and GTA IV are pretty much the only ones I want that aren't on the list :)
  • Where's your love for thee DARK SOULS!!!!!
  • Dark souls is a must. Period.
  • I agree on a few games Paul, but my list is quite a bit different. 1. Tales of Vesperia. 2. Lost Odyssey.  3. Mass Effect Trilogy. 4. Halo: Reach. 5. Every single XBLA game released. (there are too many gems to pick just one).
  • there will never be another NCAA football game if all the legal business stays as it is. It needs to be brought to XBONE. Actually the one reason I still play my 360.
  • Windows Media Center Extender
  • Best list ever.... I hear ya !!!!! We should put a vote up for that one and plenty of WMC fans out there who would vote it up....
  • Please add Tekken Tag Tournament 2, please! I beg you, it's all I am asking for, it's the only game so far that I wa