Every couple of weeks, we recommend some of the best games on the Xbox Live Indie channel. These are the games on the fringe of the Xbox 360 platform, made by regular folks and indie dreamers. They're peer-reviewed, not Microsoft-approved and thankfully they're not all about talking to pretty girls or posing your Xbox Avatar.
Our favorites—a mix of new and established Indies, all of them cheap—are listed here and listed in the Kotaku's Favorites channel in the Indie Game part of Xbox Live's Games Marketplace.
We'll have new recommendations, here and on Xbox Live, in two weeks. Enjoy!
Blocks That Matter (240 MS Points): Not your typical block breaking puzzle, you play a driller robot sent to save it's creators, who happen to be the developers of this game, after they're kidnapped. The robot can break blocks and collect them, laying them out in groups of four to reach new areas. A fresh take on the puzzle/platformer genre that will force your brain to look at block puzzles in a completely different way. -Max Abrams
Grappleboy (80 MS Points): If you love Super Meat Boy, this game is the perfect continuation of that type of throw your controller across the room, punch the wall, brain-screamingly hard platformer. The controls are fast and tight as you navigate your little blue blob through rooms of spikes and pitfalls. The addition of a well controlled grappling tongue means there are even less places to land without meeting your spiky doom. -Max Abrams
Return All Robots (240 MS Points): A seemingly simple puzzle concept, you play the newest intern at Ethical Robotics and Experimentation, Inc. Using your trusty remote control to move robots towards where you are standing, you must to steer robots towards the exit while avoiding the evil robots. A classic puzzle concept, but the great sense of humor puts this game over the top, with a mix of dark comedy and pop culture references. -Max Abrams
Urban Space Squirrel (80 MS Points): This quirky puzzle/platforming game stars a daring squirrel forced to travel through rooms full of lasers and spikes, attempting to pick up bonuses on his way to the exit. The twist lies in the use of his bombs, which can be placed anywhere and used to propel to higher surfaces. With consistent ability upgrades, including the addition of multiple bombs requiring expert timing, the challenge always stays one step ahead of the player. -Max Abrams
Sum Fighter (80 MS Points): In this puzzle fighting game, you use your curser to combine numbered blocks to create bigger numbers. The goal is to connect groups of blocks in the same quantity as their face values (connecting two groups of the two blocks for five groups of the five blocks). Fast paced and satisfying, the game has similar feeling to Tetris Attack, but instead of creating lines you're furiously adding in your head.-Max Abrams
Topochopper (80 MS Points): In what must be the fastest helicopter in the world, you search around the globe for city locations. A race against the clock, you earn time and money with each city. Travel around the world with the help of speed boosts and city finders, there are over 47,000 locations to keep you flying for a long time.-Max Abrams
The Great Paper Adventure (240 MS Points): Side scrolling shooters are pretty common on Xbox Live Indie channel, most of them touting their beautiful graphics or massive enemies. This game turns the genre's style on it's head by choosing to go with a real hand drawn images scanned into the game and sillier enemies (starting with giant cows). Make no mistake, there are still plenty of weapon upgrades and screens filled with enemies, making this one of the most enjoyable shooters out there. -Max Abrams
Techno Kitten Adventure (240 MS Points): Not a game for anyone with seizures problems, you navigate your "kitteh" by through a techno world full of pink blimps, unicorns, cats on jet skis, narwhals, dolphins in top hats, UFOs and flashing lights. And that's just the first level. When the techno music gets really intense your controller vibrates and world takes another few steps into crazy land. Overstimulation is an understatement in this addicting quest for high scores. -Max Abrams