The Man Cave giveaway is just getting warmed up: a giant TV, a rockin’ drum set, a Les Paul guitar… and the ultimate gaming machine – an XBOX 360, Microsoft’s most powerful contender in this generation’s console wars.

The XBOX features graphical prowess that can rival the PS3, and quite frankly leaves the Wii behind in the dust. With the XBOX, online play is the name of the game as the XBOX Live online gaming feature is the most polished of any of the consoles. With a headset for real-time trash talking and an interface that makes finding your opponent a breeze, the XBOX may just be the console of our dreams.

trans [Man Cave] Essential XBOX 360 GamesCall of Duty: Black Ops

call of duty black ops box art [Man Cave] Essential XBOX 360 Games

If you haven’t played any games in the Call of Duty franchise by now, you must be living under a mountain somewhere, ’cause even the guys under the rocks have played this series. Black Ops is a step in a new direction, diverging from the guerrilla warfare of past titles for a fresh take on the Cold War.

While the campaign mode is excellent, the real selling point here is the online play integrated with XBOX Live. We recommend getting some practice against the computer A.I. first cause some of those guys online are good.

Fallout: New Vegas

fnv box art x360 us [Man Cave] Essential XBOX 360 Games

Don’t worry, you needn’t have played any of the past Fallout games for this one to make sense. It has its own self-contained storyline taking place in a post-apocalyptic America that has been ravaged by nuclear war. You fall into the role of a courier, whose latest delivery places you at the wrong place at the wrong time.

Produced by Bethesda Softworks, the master studio behind the Oblivion series, this game is nothing short of epic. And immense. And excellent. This is one of those games where you can choose exactly what you say to everyone you come across. Bethesda has given the player an incredible amount of freedom to do with what he/she chooses. Odds are you’ll end up spending hours on some of the excellent side quests.

Halo: Reach

halo reach box art [Man Cave] Essential XBOX 360 Games

Bungie Studios is back with another entry into its popular Halo series. This time it’s a prequel, taking place before any of the events of the previous games.

Featuring an exciting new campaign mode with excellent co-op gameplay, Halo: Reach isn’t just trying to capitalize on the successful Halo title – it’s another solid title from a studio that knows what they’re doing.

Gears of War 2

e308 boxart sm [Man Cave] Essential XBOX 360 Games

If you enjoy killing aliens and epic explosions, then you’re going to be fan of this game. Gears of War 2 is a bloody adventure-filled romp where you play the role of Marcus Fenix, the leader of a troop of alien killing marines, who fights to ensure the very survival of the Earth.

This sequel improves upon the original with a better multiplayer mode as well as a longer campaign and much improved character dialogue. This is among the best XBOX 360 exclusives out there, so be sure to pick it up.

Mass Effect

mass effect boxart [Man Cave] Essential XBOX 360 Games

Mass Effect, the smash hit from Bioware is one of the finest sci-fi games we’ve ever played. Featuring an engrossing storyline complete with political strife and dynamic characters, this game will have you exploring every facet of it’s extremely well-developed world.

With an excellent combat system in place, and many side quests to explore, Mass Effect is one of those rare titles that we just couldn’t put down. The sequel is considered by many to be even superior to the original, and with a third game in the series announced we suggest you pick up the original before you miss out on this amazing experience.

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