Official Xbox Magazine's Scores

  • Games
For 2,504 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 58% higher than the average critic
  • 5% same as the average critic
  • 37% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 3.5 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Game review score: 69
Highest review score: 100 Halo 3
Lowest review score: 10 World War II Combat: Road to Berlin
Score distribution:
2,504 game reviews
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    No longer a covert operation, Epic's sci-fi shooter Gears of War has finally emerged, and it's pretty much everything we hooped it would be, as well as a few things we didn't expect. [Holiday 2006, p.41]
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    To put it simply, Fight Night Round 3 kicks our ass. [Apr 2006, p.74]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    This 10 is based on the fact that Bungie has successfully raied the level of what to expect in future shooters and how much stuff you can cram into one game with a high level of polish and expertise--and not as an afterthought or as padding. [Nov 2007, p.50]
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Personally, it's the best game I've ever played, but even if you're not a hardcore sci-fi nerd like me, Mass Effect is a transcendent experience, the new standard-setter for what a game can be. You have to play it, and that's why we're kinda jealous of you. Even if you memorized all the previews and trailers, you're not ready for how awesome this game is. [Holiday 2007, p.58]
    • 96 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Play it, talk about it, experience it--a game like Bioshock won't happen again for a good long while. [Nov 2007, p.80]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Simply put, Call of Duty 4 does everything right and nearly nothing wrong. But where it elevates itself above even the best 360 shooters is how all of the good stuff is ludicrously good. The campaign never lets up, while multiplayer is a triple-A affair in itself. [Dec 2007, p.36]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Games this captivating do not come along often. Between its engrossing story, ginormous world, well-crafted RPG side, and white-knuckle FPS combat, Fallout 3 completely, utterly gives you your $60 worth. [Dec 2008, p.52]
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    The evidence is indisputable: Gears of War 3 is the ultimate realization of the Xbox 360 console, much in the same way Halo 2 was for the original Xbox. It maximizes the hardware's horsepower; boasts a fully featured, seamless online experience that serves up both competitive and cooperative gameplay; and it's enduringly replayable online or off. Quite simply, Gears of War 3 leaves no stone unturned - it's everything a triple-A blockbuster should be.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    A week after beating the main campaign (at which point, we dove right back to side missions), its final image is lodged in our heads. And that's okay, because every time we think of Arkham City, we smile.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Skyrim is the kind of game you can completely lose yourself in for at least a hundred hours, even if you somehow manage to complete the main quest in fewer than twenty. If you aren't normally drawn to role-playing games, get over it - to miss out on this extraordinary gaming experience would be positively criminal.
    • 97 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    From skydiving and submarine exploration to bounty-hunting and watching animated shorts, GTA V is absolutely crammed full of things to do, and it looks amazing while you do them.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 99 Critic Score
    Between the compelling gameplay of the single-player missions, the value of the versus mode, and the perfect integration of co-op play over Live, this is the definitive Xbox game. The zenith of the platform... An utterly spectacular accomplishment. [Apr 2005, p.72]
    • 89 Metascore
    • 98 Critic Score
    Burnout Revenge changes the gameplay of its predecessors in small yet very crucial ways that make it more fun than the previous games, without making those games seem less fun. [Nov 2005, p.132]
    • 95 Metascore
    • 97 Critic Score
    You'll be surprised and stunned by some of the turns that not only imbue the story with great depth and meaning, but indelibly impact the actual game you're playing... Halo 2 is the single greatest achievement on the platform. [Dec 2004, p.44]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 96 Critic Score
    By fully intersecting its Xbox-caliber visual and audio presentation with wide-open stealth action gameplay, it submerges you in a gripping, nerve-pounding atmosphere that will leave you begging for more. [Dec 2002, p.50]
    • 91 Metascore
    • 96 Critic Score
    What it has to offer is quite possibly the purest, deepest, most rewarding single-player action experience available on this current generation of hardware. [May 2004, p.66]
    • 83 Metascore
    • 96 Critic Score
    Warrior Within is not perfect - there's too much backtracking, too many low-poly character models, recurring cheap deaths on small platforms - but it's the closest the adventure genre will come to it in this generation of systems. [Dec 2004, p.30]
    • 88 Metascore
    • 96 Critic Score
    Both its single-player and multiplayer facets deploy innovative, brilliantly crafted gameplay that makes this WWII action/strategy blend an evolutionary step forward in combat videogames. [Apr 2005, p.76]
    • 85 Metascore
    • 96 Critic Score
    Another riveting experience in what should be a creatively exhausted landscape. [Dec 2005, p.113]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Take heed when staring at Oblivion on a store shelf: Your $60 will go father than it ever has, but prepare to get hooked for the long haul. [Apr 2006, p.69]
    • 98 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    If it were up to us, we'd have included a few better missions, weapons, and cars earlier in the game - if only for a temporary taste. That would definitely improve the pacing (while leaving plenty of surprises for later), and it'd have ensured that ADD players don't stop early without seeing the brilliant content that's down the road. [June 2008, p.40]
    • 89 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Fable II is everything Molyneux promised the first time around. It's funny, deep, emotional, epic, and, yes, wildly charming. We are already eager for a second playthrough, and we're betting a lot of you will have exactly the same reaction. [Dec 2008, p.68]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Expect your non-gaming friends, family, and spouses to beg for the chance to bring the rock. That power alone makes Guitar Hero II a must-play. [Mar 2007, p.68]
    • 89 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Left 4 Dead's simplicity offers purity of gameplay - the same reason that gamers keep returning to classic arcade games. Come to think of it, with a handful of levels and unpredictable events happening within them, Left 4 Dead has more in common with "Ms. Pac-Man" than just the eating. It's the same thing over and over - but when simple ingredients are perfectly prepared, what could be a mere snack becomes a feast. This one just happens to be on human flesh. [Holiday 2008, p.32]
    • 96 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    The Orange Box packs so much quality content into one $60 title that it sets an almost dangerous precedent for all other developers and publishers. [Dec 2007, p.58]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Rock Band is the ultimate role-playing game - the only way to win is to completely commit as a guitarist, bassist, drummer, or singer and do your part for the fellowship of meta-musicians sharing the virtual stage. And if you can lower your shield of shyness to let the game in, you're richly rewarded as the collective joy of making music pours back out. Unlike other games, the Rock Band payoff isn't visceral or technical; it's emotional. [Holiday 2007, p.34]
    • 79 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Aside from everything else Mirror’s Edge succeeds at, it also has some of the most arresting, original visuals we’ve seen on 360. Its starkly colorful graphics and slick anime cinematics are expressly designed to wire directly into your nerd-joy cortex — and they do. With such raw creativity and built-in speed-run appeal, Mirror’s Edge will transfix you for a long, long time.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Our favorite new addition to the Gears multiplayer family, however, is Horde. A fiveplayer co-op romp played on any of the 15 maps, Horde throws wave after wave of increasingly difficult Locust foes at you and your friends for 50 rounds, putting your teamworking skills to the ultimate test.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    If you're a novice, a training mode and eight levels of difficulty will help you find your way. If you're a pro, SFIV contains all the depth you've ever loved about the series, without compromise. Capcom simply got the feel of Street Fighter perfectly right. [Feb 2009, p.76]
    • 89 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Simply put, this is a once-in-a-generation puzzler, much like Tetris. It’s Xbox Live Arcade’s finest offering, and it can be both mindless and high-level strategic fun. Don’t miss it. Find an internet connection and create an Xbox Live Silver account if you have to; it’s that sublime.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Mass Effect 2 overcomes its few gameplay weaknesses with a fantastic weave of dynamic combat, lavish presentation, and engaging character and weapon customization. But for all the myriad improvements that make Mass Effect 2's visuals so appealing and its combat so exhilarating, it's ultimately the way it moves us that makes it so memorable. [Feb 2010, p.56]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Modern Warfare 2 is easily one of the year’s best games. Because it’s more iterative than innovative, though, it’s not quite as perfect as we’d expected, but it is a terrifically fun, nerve-wrackingly intense spectacle that you’d be crazy to miss.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    BioShock 2 isn't a groundbreaking follow-up that rewrites all the rules laid down by its predecessor. No, think of it as a sequel that fills in the gaps, adding exciting new dimensions to what's come before... You will be utterly absorbed. [Mar 2010, p.68]
    • 85 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    If you’re into party gaming with tons of tunes and opulent options, this is the Guitar Hero to own — easily the best since Guitar Hero II, and the most flexible and friendly interactive jukebox the genre has ever seen. All the elements really came together in GH5; this is musical fun done right.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    What makes Forza 3 so epic is that along with being an outstanding racing game, all this social and creative activity is so alluring for car people of all stripes. It's the kind of hub that people get lost in, and we'll be right there with them. [Dec 2009, p.95]
    • 83 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    This Halo manages to earn its own keep while learning from its predecessors’ mistakes and balancing fan expectations. It’s no small feat, particularly with that Master Chief guy nowhere in sight.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    An undisputable improvement over its predecessor in every way, and it steals its own crown as best co-op game on the Xbox. It's chainsaw-twirlingly good. [Holiday 2009, p.64]
    • 90 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    And really, what the team at Playdead has achieved here--in their very first game, no less--is just tremendous. [Oct 2010, p.72]
    • 91 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Unfathomably deep, customizable, user-friendly, and straight-up engrossing multiplayer modes.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    It's not only an achievement within it's own genre, but a landmark for the entire medium as well. [Nov 2010, p.64]
    • 84 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    If you never quite "got" Fallout 3, New Vegas won't be the epiphany that shows you what you've been missing. But for anyone who adored the frantic post-apocalyptic, choose-your-own-path vibe of Bethesda's original sprawling stunner, this trip to the sin-soaked West is one hell of a kickass homecoming.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Quotation forthcoming.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    The nuanced tweaks and countless subtle refinements really ratchet up the atmosphere and make Dead Space 2 a richer, more streamlined experience...There's a sure-footed confidence this time around that gives the ghastly proceedings a level of character investment and polish that Dead Space never quite achieved. [Feb 2011, p.29]
    • 97 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Surpassed the hype completely. [Dec 2001]
    • 87 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Glorious looking, fast moving fighter with all the right moves. [Dec 2001]
    • 88 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Call us crazy, but we're willing to bet the farm that the world of Psychonauts is the most inventive, creative, and downright vision that's ever graced a videogame. [May 2005, p.76]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Superior to the original Splinter Cell in every aspect: gameplay, graphics, sound, presentation, and to a degree, innovation. [May 2004, p.70]
    • 89 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    This cracking game also proves the Xbox truly is the only console capable of running games with this level of immersion...Riddick should be waved in the face of every PS2 fanboy with a taunting "nyah, nyah." [Aug 2004, p.72]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    It's just that brilliant. [Aug 2005, p.76]
    • 79 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Gun
    The first time you take someone's head off with a quick-draw move...you'll be hooked. [Holiday 2005, p.76]
    • 95 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Portal 2 isn't dessert - it's a delectable multi-course meal at a five-star restaurant. Make your reservation now.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Put simply, though, no other car game on Xbox - and we'd dare say any other platform - even approaches Forza 4's depth, versatility, beauty, and community support. It's so comprehensive that there's probably nowhere for the series to go from here - except onto the inevitable Xbox 720. Until then, enjoy every minute of this ride.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Dance Central 2 blew our minds because of its artful mix of movement and gameplay; it makes using your body to respond to what's onscreen an afterthought. You just think: "Man, what a great game."
    • 84 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Feels like a game whose designers have found the note-perfect tone for the series while also wielding their own talents with razor-sharp precision. It's the game Volition - a studio whose successes go back 15 years to the original Descent - was born to make.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    One startlingly huge, polished, and downright entertaining shooter experience. Sure, we can come up with a list of things we'd love to see from the series - whether it's a revamped campaign approach or a revitalized game engine and aesthetic - but when everything here is this well-executed and offers so many enduring thrills, it's hard to knock it too much. MW3 absolutely delivers.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    From the visceral combat to the excitement of finishing Shepard's 100-hour fight, Mass Effect 3 is a rare, magnetically engaging treat that'll compel you to stay up well past your bedtime to do "just one more quest." Safe travels, fellow Shepards. See you starside.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Fez
    For an experience that could've drowned in an overreliance on using familiar signposts from what's come before it, Fez succeeds in celebrating the past in a smart, joyous way that has us incredibly excited for gaming's future.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Adding up the gorgeous visuals, extra coats of polish, replayability, multiplayer, track editor, and core gameplay that is both artfully scientific and scientifically artful, we'd say Trials Evolution is as close to a perfect download as we're ever likely to get.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Crafted with painstaking attention to inventive detail and charm, Dust is never less than an outright joy to experience.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Mark of the Ninja's brilliant approach to stealth hits all of the right notes throughout, whether you're silently slaying guards from the shadows and stashing them in crevices, evading laser tripwires with a well-placed smoke bomb, or using darts to lure enemies into their own traps.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Beneath its sometimes bombastic layer of blockbuster-level polish, Halo 4 hides a complicated heart filled with intelligent sci-fi and a surprising amount of humanity and soul. Count us in for Chief's next outing. We'll be ready.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    As fun as its combat is, BioShock Infinite’s real strengths are its weirdly lovable characters, its richly realized world, and its story, which stays addictively convoluted from its eerie intro to its lengthy, jaw-dropping ending. It may not always be quite as inventive as the original BioShock, but it’s just as — if not more — unforgettable.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 94 Critic Score
    Nothing short of breathtaking... The "Star Wars" game that fans of the movies have been waiting for since 1977. [Sept 2003, p.74]
    • 90 Metascore
    • 94 Critic Score
    It's a stunning achievement in design, playability, good old-fashioned fun, and in my humble opinion the best Xbox game this year. [Dec 2003, p.82]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 94 Critic Score
    A stunning and rare achievement that makes you feel happy to be a gamer. [Jan 2004, p.56]
    • 89 Metascore
    • 94 Critic Score
    Jade's world is its foremost strength. A fantastical mix of myths and pure fiction, you'll find it hard to put the controller down once you've been sucked in. [Apr 2005, p.40]
    • 90 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    A stunning beauty with deep gameplay to match. [Nov 2002]
    • 87 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    Control deserves special mention, as it is especially top-notch. Despite the fast-paced nature of the game, it still feels like you're controlling a hulking, four-story robot. [Jan 2003, p.72]
    • 86 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    The super-smooth graphics and wonderful gameplay mean this is almost a home run. [Aug 2003, p.80]
    • 91 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    No game, no TV broadcast... flat-out nothing I've ever seen has come close to re-creating the intensity of a real NFL experience like ESPN Football's First Person Football mode. [Oct 2003, p.73]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    Powersliding through a curve at 75 mph and missing a tractor trailer by a hair's breadth should prompt a few calls to your cardiologist. You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll scream until you giggle. The pure visceral experience of Burnout 3 is as intense as racing gets. [Oct 2004, p.58]
    • 85 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    Almost the definition of a triple-A title. It's got everthing - good online play, amazingly fun and addictive action, options up the wazoo, a graphics engine that will make your eyes well up - and it's all polished to a glistening shine... It's a spectacle to behold. [March 2005, p.32]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    Not only is ESPN an outrageously inexpensive AAA-level game, it's also the best NFL title on the Xbox at any price. [Sept 2004, p.83]
    • 85 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    The on-court action is a monstrous, 52-inch vertical leap forward in authenticity and immersion. [Dec 2004, p.88]
    • 88 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    Expertly balanced, with tons of options to keep you improving either your golfer or your wardrobe or your course. [Nov 2004, p.80]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    The best football game on the Xbox (or any other system) this year. [Oct 2002, p.100]
    • 88 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    Where else can you grind up a neon-lit, dragon-shaped skyscraper while launching a graffiti assault on a bunch of red-headed punkettes in tube tops? Absolutely nowhere. [Apr 2002, p.66]
    • 84 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    There's so much goodness packed into Tides of War that it's impossible not to find something to like. Return to Castlewolfenstein is truly an incredible, value-laced package. [May 2003, p.20]
    • 86 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    Best Xbox Live game ever made? Yeppers. Best first-person shooter this year? Indeed. [Dec 2003, p.54]
    • 88 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    Water, sky, textures, animation, design, particle effects, draw distance, frame rates - every visual feature excels and entrances. You have to see Crimson Skies move. It'll move you. [Dec 2003, p.126]
    • 88 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    The best part of this game is the absolute depth and replay value that'll keep you coming back for more. [Dec 2002, p.128]
    • 88 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    The Hell levels are beautiful in their nightmarishness. Add in cool features like online play and the inclusion of older Doom games, and you've got a genuine horror masterpiece for the Xbox. [Apr 2005, p.82]
    • 82 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    Graphically, FIFA charms, but the gameplay is sublime. [Dec 2003, p.146]
    • 86 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    The creators at Obsidian have crafted an amazingly compelling story with just the right tweaks and upgrades to keep the action fresh. [Jan 2005, p.30]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    Crisp, tight controls, hilariously dramatic dialog, and oodles of options make Soul Calibur II an instant classic. [Nov 2003, p.128]
    • 96 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Whether you've played them or not, the pair of masterpieces contained in the Grand Theft Auto Double Pack are too good to pass up, especially when it's a two-for-one deal. [Holiday 2003, p.97]
    • 79 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Spectacular debut football sim. [Dec 2001]
    • 74 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    The variety of play, including obstacle courses, photo shoots, midnight races and stunt driving is staggering. Wreckless is a work of art. [Mar 2002, p.63]
    • 82 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    A visual feast with each car modeled with incredible care. Everything from the texture work right down to the tiny car logos on the hoods is impeccable. [Oct 2002, p.110]
    • 90 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    This game has it all – great gameplay, tons of depth, awesome AI, and plenty of gameplay modes...it sets the standard for all future basketball games. [Apr 2002, p.78]
    • 85 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Visually, Aggressive Inline is up there with the best of them. The levels are loaded with small details, all of which can be interacted with in some way. [Oct 2002, p.104]
    • 84 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Technical quibbles aside, Deus Ex is a brilliant RPG that manages to pull off freeform gameplay without a hitch. It's as smart as you want it to be, and cuts no gameplay corners. [Holiday 2003, p.72]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    We had some minor issues with course design; there are simply too many "holes" in the geometry - places where your boarder can get stuck and has no reset... That said, you can learn 'em and avoid 'em. [Dec 2003, p.140]
    • 80 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    The game's real genius is in its presentation - mega options and a clean interface are backed up by mostly cool and occasionally superb, graphics. [Dec 2003, p.146]
    • 90 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    A landmark videogame baseball achievement. The lack of online play notwithstanding, it's brilliant. [Apr 2004, p.76]
    • 91 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Madden's AI is generally solid, but still way too susceptible to an aggressive passing attack. [Sept 2004, p.82]
    • 89 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    This is easily the most realistically simulated home field advantage in all of digital sports. [August 2004]
    • 89 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Beautifully restyled graphics make a stellar first impression as larger, more realistic players stride with feline grace across courts that drip with lavish colors and lighting. But true beauty lies on the inside, and V3 has layer after layer to peel away. [Feb 2005, p.73]
    • 87 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    A truly fantastic college football game. [Aug 2005, p.88]
    • 85 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Live is quite simply the best-controlling basketball game ever. Player control is unprecedented. [Dec 2003, p.152]