#12: Geometry Wars: Retro EvolvedPlatform: Xbox 360Year: 2005
Original review score: Not Reviewed
Sometimes the biggest movements begin in the smallest of ways. While a terrific retro-styled arcade shooter, Geometry Wars' gameplay itself isn't revolutionary. Its distribution method, however, is another story entirely.
Why It Was Innovative:
Originally released as a minigame in the Xbox 1 title Project Gotham Racing 2 developer, Bizarre Creations, later remade this spacey arcade shooter for the new Xbox 360 as Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved. The catch: the game was only available as a downloadable title through Microsoft's new Xbox Live Arcade service. With its low price and instantly gratifying gameplay, Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved became one of the most-played games in Xbox history despite never showing up as a boxed game on store shelves. By eschewing a traditional retail sales strategy and delivering an addictive package at a tiny price, Geometry Wars was the first tentative step in a movement that will end in the eventual retirement of physical discs in favor of efficient, affordable, and accessible game downloads.