Recommend some XBox 360 games for a 13 year old

So it appears the Bestest Uncle in the World is getting my son an XBox 360 for Christmas, and I’m caving in my declaration to never get him a video game myself, mostly 'cause I can’t figure out what else to get him for his birthday in January.


I have an xbox 360. NCAA college football 2007 is fun. Halo 2, yes this is an Xbox game but it works with the 360. Get him a subscription for Xbox Live. Gears off War is a great game but i rated M for violence and language. Also Test Drive Unlimited is a fun driving game as well as Need for Speed Carbon. TDU is more stock exotic cars while NFS Carbon is street racing, tuner cars

Wow, thanks! Some great suggestions there.

Without coming off like an old fuddy-duddy, what’s the general behavior like with Xbox live? I’m not too worried about kiddie-diddlers or anything (he’s definitely trained not to give out personal information), but is there a lot of general nastiness or bullying? I know, I’m such a dork. But I hate over-testosteroned jock assholes, and would rather it not be in my house even through a phone line.

And, the stupid question: Xbox games work on Xbox 360, right? I’m pretty sure it’s the one with the hard drive, if that makes any difference.

Ahem. First thing’s first. You can turn off the language on Gears of War through the menus, so that can help seal the deal.

SOME Xbox games work on the 360, not all. Here’s a list.

Is he into sports? Does he like role playing games? Does he like action games? If he likes sports, Madden 07 is good. Halo 2 (an old Xbox game) is a MUST have. If he likes role playing games, Oblivion is a VERY good game. Tell him to point out games that look interesting next time you go to the store (or use whatever pick-your-present-but-not-know-you’re-getting-it trick you have).
Also, Xbox Live is GREAT! It’s really really REALLY fun and there are some bad apples, but think about what a proud mom you’ll feel like when he tells you that there was some kid saying stupid/racist things on Live and he told him to stop. That’s when you know the parental programming has taken root.
Again, there are some dicks, but he can play with a big group of his friends.

Thanks for the link to the list, that’s very helpful. (And I see there’s a Buffy game which, even if it sucks (hah!) is a must buy for this house!)

I’m not entirely certain how games are categorized nowadays. I’m from the time when there were puzzle games (Tetris) and bounce on things and gather coins games (Mario), sport games (Madden NFL) and shoot things games (everything else). What he talks about most is games where he figures things out to get past some sort of monster to get to the next level. I do know there’s lots of lasers and swords involved. I don’t have a problem with video game violence at his age. Language is totally an “it depends” thing (I have no problems with all purpose swearwords, but I despise hate speech directed at or about ethnic groups, gays, women, etc.) Sexual images are not verboten, but I am uncomfortable when sex and violence is mixed.

I just asked him what he would recommend for “a Doper who wants to know good games for her kid - any system” :wink: and he said, “Ratchet and Clank and Devil May Cry, but it depends how uptight she is.”, so similar games on Xbox should be a hit. He also mentioned that Xbox is “meant for” shoot-em-ups, but he didn’t know anyone who had the system, so couldn’t recommend Xbox games by name.

Get him “Dead Rising”. He’ll think you are the best father ever :slight_smile:

OK, but can I still be his mother? :smiley:

Oblivion is what’s called an Roleplaying Game (RPG). It’s enormous and will take hours to play through. You start as a poor prisoner who escapes from jail (with a little help from the Emperor and some assassins) and from there your job is to save the world. How you do it is up to you. You can be a mage or a fighter or a thief or anything in between. What skills you choose and what factions you join is all up to you. (I recommend Marksmanship :wink: ) The game world itself is enormous and a lot of the fun comes from just heading out and getting lost in all the things you find as you go.

As games go, it’s pretty tame. There’s no nudity. No ultraviolence. thinks No obvious sexual situations that I can recall. Some of it deals with necromancers who are untidy about where they leave their decomposing body parts. One of the guilds you can join is an assassin’s guild, and it does involve wanton slaying for hire.

My biggest reservation would be if a thirteen year old has the patience for a game this huge. But content wise, it’s a great introduction to RPG’s.

Psychonauts. You can get it (it’s an xbox game but compatible) at any used game store for like, $15. It’s fun and not to young.

How well does Oblivion work on the XBox? I’ve got it for the PC and am used to using a lot of keyboard commands. I’ve played plenty of RPGs on consoles, but all of the Final Fantasy type. Of course, getting it for a console means not having to worry about configuration and whether or not the graphic card is good enough.

I’m afraid I’m probably not much help. I didn’t have a console of any kind until I was 15 or so, just the computer. And most of the games I played were either platformers, flight sims, or 4X turn-based strategy. A little Doom, some other games as well, but even now, looking at what I’ve got for the Playstation, it’s mostly RPGs and platformers. I’ve heard good things about Jade Empire, but I’ve never played it as Bioware has yet to release a PC version (though they’re working on it.) Lego Star Wars II looks like fun.

Oblivion works GREAT on Xbox 360. It’s all good on there, keyboard shortcuts be damned.

asterion, I actually played the PC version too, because I enjoy playing and making the different game mods. But as far as the interface goes, the game was designed to be played on the 360 and then the UI was adapted to keyboard/mouse. If it was a real PC interface there could have been about 3x as many hotkeys. :wink:

On the 360, the hotkeys 1-8 correspond to the directions on the Dpad and other hotkeys to various buttons. I’ve never read any complaints about it on the 360.

Eh, whatever floats your boat I guess.

My 13 year old boy is getting an xbox 360 for xmas too. He really, really loves playing Call of Duty on PC, and has asked for the new Call of Duty 3 to play on the 360. It’s an army game, not my preference, but much better than playing a psychopathic slasher. You can play it alone or with a friend. I think you can play it online too, like you can on a PC.

My son has also played Oblivion, but on PC. He doesn’t have the patience to develop skills, so he plays it in god-mode (a cheat that gives him all powers). However, on the 360, I don’t think you can play in god-mode because it requires a keyboard command, as do many of the other cheats. My son loves Oblivion, but isn’t interested in playing it on 360, with its limitations.