Microsoft's Dream.Build.Play competition really brings out the best in developers.  You really don't need to look any further than Dean Dodrill's Dust: An Elysian Tail for proof of that, as that game started as an entry in the competition (back in 2009) and has since become a darling on Xbox Live Arcade.  This year, more than 20 finalists across the board on Xbox 360 have been chosen, with a winner to be determined very soon.

There are a number of great independent games in this list of finalists, including Dead Pixels, an interesting 8-bit action/RPG game where you pick up items to help you fight an onslaught of retro-looking zombies; the likeable One Finger Death Punch; and the enjoyable UK adventure Windhaven.  Other games that have been nominated include A Pixel Escape, Apple Jack 2, Bleed, Brand, Chibis Bomba, Chompy Chomp Chomp, Diehard Dungeon, Divided, Face-Plant Adventures, Gateways, Graveyard Shift, Imagine Earth, Moon Cheese, Ninja Crash, qrth-phyl, Snails, and Wyv and Keep.

To learn more about these games -- and even download them on Xbox Live -- head over to this page.  Congrats to everyone who's been chosen, and we're looking forward to seeing who the winner is.