Five great Xbox Live Arcade games

Got an Xbox 360 but can't afford to pay top whack for your games? Or maybe you are just too lazy to get off the sofa. Well the good news is there are a cracking number of titles available for download in the console's online market place. Here are five we think you should consider:

Geometry Wars 2
Twin stick shooters might not be anything new, but the sheer stylish manner that Geometry Wars 2 managed to cram into this age old format helps culminate it to pure gaming gold. Packing a mass of gaming modes to twist the basic formula - from all-out blasting action, through to avoiding conflict completely - all complete with online leaderboards, Bizarre Creations latest online title is a true must buy for anyone with access to the Xbox Live Arcade.

Braid
It might look like any old 2D platformer, but Braid is a real mind bender too. Rushing through the levels may open up all the worlds available, but solving the devilishly tricky time-manipulating puzzles are where the real test lies. Creator Jonathan Blow even managed time to cram in a surprisingly adult storyline based around the traditional "find the princess" routine that will keep you trying to bag every puzzle piece for months.

Streets of Rage 2
As any Mega Drive/Genesis owner will tell you, the old school side scrolling beat em up genre was ruled by one series. Namely, Streets of Rage. Fondly remembered as the pinnacle of the series, Streets of Rage 2 proved to be such an unbelievable amount of fun that it remained a top seller for years. Now on the XBLA you can see just what all the fuss was about for just 800 Microsoft points. Featuring full online co-op play too, this absolute stormer is even better when teaming up with a fellow gaming pal.

N+
It might look like the kind of game that your ageing mobile could easily handle graphically, but N+ is as testing a puzzle game as any out there. Not only are the levels devilishly designed, but the risk/reward nature of the collectable portions of "air" which can help boost your time score, but easily bring you much closer to a poorly timed death, help make this one unbelievably addictive. And with leaderboards available to show off your skills, you'll keep coming back to this one for months.

Castle Crashers
As stylish as they come, don't let the hand drawn graphics lull you into a false sense of security. Castle Crashers - one of the few XBLA titles to offer co-op gameplay for up to 4 gamers - is a hectic hack and slash 2D scroller that packs some real bite. Not only is it smothered in gore and side-splitting humour, but it’s easily one of the trickiest titles currently available for download.