Xbox Live Coffee Table

So far, most of the games released for Xbox Live Arcade (XBLA) fall firmly into the “other games” category, as opposed to the more traditional “proper games”. Pool/Backgammon/Poker? Definitely “other games”. Frogger/Galaga/Pacman? I’m as nostalgic as the next guy, but still “other games”. Zuma/Bejewelled/Hexic? Well, you need a fairly long crowbar to pry my wife off Bejewelled 2 (on the last-gen, low-tech, general-purpose home PC, not on a 360, alas), but it doesn’t make it anything but an “other game”.

Now Microsoft have come up with a whole new subcategory of “other games”: sub-geek boardgames, sub-geek meaning that they have already risen above chess/go/backgammon in “number of colors used” and “thickness of rulebook”, but are still a bagful of 20-sided dice short of the real geekfest. The first three games will be Settlers of Catan, Alhambra and Carcassonne. At least the first one is a game I’ve heard nothing but praise about, so I’ll be downloading demos this fall.

Now, when do we get some “proper” games?

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