Xbox Live Gold’s new free games might be the most disappointing yet

Xbox Live Gold subscribers on Xbox One, Xbox Series S, and Xbox Series X have two new free games, and they may be the most disappointing pairing of Xbox Live Gold games yet. Starting March 1, Xbox Live Gold subscribers can download The Flame in the Flood free. It is not, however, one of the two games in question. The Flame in the Flood is a well-regarded game. Xbox Live Gold subscribers were also able to download sacred 2 fallen angel until a few days ago, when it was replaced by the aforementioned pair of newer free games: street power football and The truth or the square of spongebob.

The first is a 2020 game from developers SFL Interactive and Gamajun and publisher Nacon. It has a 41 on Metacritic. The other game is a 2009 Xbox 360 game from Heavy Iron Studios which has a 40 on Metacritic. If none of these games appeal to you, even as free downloads, you’re not alone.

As alluded to, the Games With Gold supply of Xbox Live Gold has been on a downward trajectory for years and it’s bordering on a meme within the Xbox community at this point. That said, this may be a new low point for the subscription service. It’s obvious at this point that Xbox is only focused on Xbox Game Pass.

Below you can read more about both games and check out a trailer for both games, courtesy of Xbox:

Street Power Football: “Show off your sick style in this fast-paced, action-packed version of the beautiful game. Try out over-the-top cheats, game modes and playing fields, and unleash your soccer superpowers. Compete against street legends or your friends in a game to determine who will claim the crown of King of the Street!”

Truth or SpongeBob SquarePants: “SpongeBob has lost Krabby Patty’s secret formula. With your help and the help of some Bikini Bottom buddies, SpongeBob must use Plankton’s memory machine to trace the happiest times of his life and find the formula.”

For more coverage on all things Xbox, including the latest on Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox Live Gold, and Xbox Game Pass, click here.

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These 10+ games are coming to Xbox next week (March 21-25)

Another week, another list of exciting new games! The big highlight of next week is undoubtedly The wonders of Tiny Tinawhich seems to satisfy all those who like the Borderlands series, but we also have many other titles on the way, including a significant batch of Xbox Game Pass additions, some of which are day one releases.

Here’s what’s coming to Xbox this week:

New Xbox Releases (March 21-25)

Optimized for Xbox Series X|S

  • The pizza boy who saved the world (March 23): “A brand new visual novel from a former delivery boy who will probably never work in the pizza business again, if his boss finds out he made this game.”
  • Devastating (March 25): “A retro-modern arcade twin stick shooter with spectacular visuals, thrilling music and intense gameplay. The ultimate twin stick shooter for those who love twin stick shooters!”
  • The wonders of Tiny Tina (March 25): “Embark on an epic adventure full of fantasy, wonder and powerful weaponry! Bullets, magic and broadswords collide in this chaotic fantasy world that comes to life…”

Xbox One

  • Kraken Academy!! (March 22): “Make friends, free spirits and make sure the world doesn’t stand still! Welcome to Kraken Academy, a technicolor fever dream that, for legal reasons, can only be described as “”technically school “”.
  • Tainted Grail: Conquest (March 22): “A unique, endlessly replayable, story-driven hybrid between a deck-building Roguelike and an RPG game. Explore the ever-changing maps, fight with deadly enemies…”
  • Zero Escape: The Nonary Games (March 22): “Abducted and taken to an unknown location, nine people find themselves forced into a diabolical nonary game by an enigmatic mastermind called Zero.”
  • APFTU (March 23): “A branching narrative adventure set in the last 21 days of a dying city. Every decision you make will shape your surroundings and the city’s fate.”
  • Richy’s Nightmares (March 23):”Richy’s Nightmares is a unique type of platforming experience. It tells the story of Richy, a little boy who got lost in the dreaded magical wood mazes.”
  • The pizza boy who saved the world (March 23): “A brand new visual novel from a former delivery boy who will probably never work in the pizza business again, if his boss finds out he made this game.”
  • A memory blue (March 24): “A song from years ago triggers a flood of memories for champion swimmer Miriam. Embark on an evocative journey through her turbulent childhood…”
  • Aery – Calm Mind 2 (March 25): “An interactive gaming experience designed to relax your mind and soul. You play as a little bird, explore beautiful landscapes and collect magic crystals…”
  • Bouncy Boi in Puzzle Land (March 25):”Bounce around in this colorful and cartoony world with BouncyBoi and adventure through different levels filled with challenging puzzles, cute graphics and funky beats!
  • Devastating (March 25): “A retro-modern arcade twin stick shooter with spectacular visuals, thrilling music and intense gameplay. The ultimate twin stick shooter for those who love twin stick shooters!”
  • The Wonders of Tiny Tina (March 25): “Embark on an epic adventure full of fantasy, wonder and powerful weaponry! Bullets, magic and broadswords collide in this chaotic fantasy world that comes to life…”

Xbox Game Pass titles

Is there anything you particularly expect from this list? Let us know in the comments below.

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Microsoft brings Xbox Cloud Gaming to the Steam Deck, with a twist

Valve finally started shipping its Steam Deck handheld gaming console in February, which is essentially a Linux gaming PC in the form of a Nintendo Switch. It already works with many Linux and Windows games out of the box, and Microsoft supports it on most Xbox Game Studios games available through Steam – those that don’t have a competitive multiplayer component, anyway. Now the company is working to support Xbox Cloud Gaming on the Steam Deck, although this currently involves installing the full Microsoft Edge web browser.

Microsoft has released a support article and a Reddit post explaining how to play Xbox cloud games (with a valid Xbox Game Pass Ultimate membership) on the Steam Deck. The process mainly involves installing the Linux version of the Microsoft Edge browser in the Linux desktop environment and then adding a shortcut to Edge in the Steam interface. Microsoft has even created artwork that you can add to the shortcut to better suit your Steam games. All information is available in the two source links below.


Installing Edge outside of Steam and creating your own shortcut is a lot of work, but maybe in the future Microsoft might release Edge on Steam for easy installation on Steam Deck. Xbox Cloud Gaming also works well on Windows 10 installed on the Steam Deck, using Valve’s recently released system drivers.

Microsoft quickly expanded Xbox Cloud Gaming to other platforms. The feature came to Xbox Series X/S and Xbox One consoles in November, giving gamers the ability to quickly try out Xbox games without downloading them to the console itself. There are also a few Xbox games only available on Cloud Gaming or the new Xbox Series X/S, such as Microsoft Flight Simulator.

Source: Microsoft Support, Reddit

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How to speed up game downloads on the Xbox app for Windows

The Xbox app on Windows is where you can buy, manage, and play PC games. It’s also the app that lets you access Game Pass, which gives you access to over a hundred games through a monthly subscription.

While there are plenty of amazing games at your fingertips on the Xbox app, it’s not uncommon to experience slow download speeds. No matter how fast your connection is, you may find yourself tapping your watch while waiting for a game to finish downloading.

To help you out, we’ve put together all the troubleshooting steps you need to follow to speed up downloads on the Xbox app for Windows. Take each in turn and your speed should pick up.

1. Restart the Xbox app

It’s the most basic tip ever, but it’s still worth it: restart the Xbox app. You’d be surprised how often a good old “turn it off and turn it back on” solves the problem.

By default, closing the Xbox app just minimizes it to your status bar. To close it completely, right click the Xbox icon in your status bar and click To leave.

You should also try restarting your entire computer. This will clear the system cache, close any programs that won’t open on startup, and give the Xbox app a cleaner slate.

2. Clear your network

It’s important to check that slow Xbox app downloads aren’t a sign of a larger network issue. Visit a website like to check your internet speed. If the result is far from what you pay for, you may need to contact your ISP for assistance.


You can try to fix this yourself. An easy step is to reset your router. Simply pull the plug, wait a minute, then plug it back in.

Also, stop all other activity on your network. Don’t download anything to your browser or stream on Netflix while using the Xbox app; your bandwidth is split between all tasks and you want to focus all resources on downloading the game.

Keep in mind that games on the Xbox app are unlikely to download at the maximum speed provided by your ISP. Indeed, you are at the mercy of various factors such as your distance from Microsoft’s servers and their congestion.

3. Disable the Xbox Insider Program

Joining the Xbox Insider Program gives you early access to Xbox app features and bug fixes. However, this can sometimes cause instability, including impacting your download speeds.

If you’re a member of the Xbox Insider program, you should quit it and see if that improves your speeds. Don’t worry, you can always re-subscribe later if you find it doesn’t make a difference.

To unsubscribe from the Xbox Insider Program:

xbox insider app leave a preview
  1. In the Xbox app, click Your username on the top corner left.
  2. To select Xbox Insider Program.
  3. From the left menu, select Previews.
  4. Under Joinedselect Windows Games.
  5. Click on Manage.
  6. Click on Exit preview.
  7. To confirm the action, click Carry on.
  8. Restart the Xbox app.

4. Do not allow downloads from other PCs

Windows includes a setting called Delivery Optimization, which is designed to improve the speed and reliability of Windows updates, Microsoft Store app updates, and Xbox app game downloads.

As part of this, there is a feature that not only allows you to grab download files from Microsoft, but also from other PCs that are downloading the same files. The download is split into multiple parts, with each part taken from the fastest and most reliable download source.

While the intentions behind the delivery optimization are sound, some users report that it actually slows down game downloads on the Xbox app. As such, it’s worth disabling it to experiment:

windows delivery optimization
  1. hurry Windows key + I to open Settings.
  2. To select Update and security.
  3. From the left menu, select Delivery Optimization.
  4. Drag Allow downloads from other PCs for Disabled.

Surprisingly, other users report that enabling this feature improves their download speeds. So if this is already disabled on your system, try dragging At instead and select PC on my local network and PC on the Internet.

5. Remove Bandwidth Limits

By default, Windows dynamically optimizes your bandwidth when downloading games from the Xbox app. You can also limit the amount of bandwidth used by Windows, which is useful if you have a data throttling plan.

Some users found that Windows incorrectly throttled their bandwidth, even though their settings suggested that this shouldn’t happen. To overcome this:

Windows Advanced Options Download Settings
  1. hurry Windows key + I to open Settings.
  2. To select Update and security.
  3. From the left menu, select Delivery Optimization.
  4. Click on Advanced options.
  5. To select Percentage of measured bandwidth (measured against update source).
  6. Check both boxes and set the sliders to 100%.

This specifically tells Windows not to apply any limits; For some reason some users are experiencing a bug where the slider percentages are applied even without the option selected.

The Microsoft Store isn’t faster

Some online tips claim that you can get faster download speeds through the Microsoft Store. However, this is misleading. In reality, both apps download at the same speed. Indeed, one displays the speed in megabits, the other in megabytes. So while the numbers may look different, the actual download speed is the same.

If you have the latest version of the Microsoft Store, you will not encounter this problem. Indeed, the Microsoft Store now directs you to the Xbox application to complete your purchase and start the download.

Spend less time downloading and more time playing

It’s incredibly frustrating when you want to play a new game and find yourself sitting there for hours twiddling your thumbs while the game downloads. Don’t let that happen to you. Hopefully the tips above fixed the problem and you can download through the Xbox app at the correct speed.

Remember, the Xbox app is your gateway to Xbox Game Pass. If you can play a few games a month, that’s amazing savings and more cost effective than buying the games outright.

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6 Reasons You Should Get Xbox Game Pass

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More Xbox Free Games with Gold for March 2022 are now available

Two more Xbox Free Games with Gold games for March 2022 are now live and available to Xbox Live Gold subscribers.

golden logo games

Instead of releasing all free games with Gold at once, Microsoft likes to release them in two batches each month. Xbox Live Gold subscribers are entitled to two of the four Games with Gold games at the start of the month, with two more added mid-month. As of Wednesday, March 16, Microsoft has added two more games to the free Games with Gold range for Xbox Live Gold subscribers to claim for their digital libraries.

Until April 15, Xbox Live Gold subscribers can snag the Xbox One game street power football. And by March 31, they can also claim the Xbox 360 game The truth or the square of spongebob. The truth or the square of spongebob replaces Sacred 2: Fallen Angelwhich was one of the free Xbox with Gold games of March 2022 from March 1 to March 15. The Flame in the Floodmeanwhile, will remain available until March 31.


RELATED: Extra Free Game For Xbox Giving Gold Subscribers

For those who may not be familiar with the March 2022 free Xbox with Gold games, street power football is an arcade soccer game that may remind some fans of the fifa street games that EA used to make. Unfortunately, those who hoped it would fill the void left by the lack of news fifa street games will probably be disappointed because street power football received overwhelmingly negative reviews upon its initial launch.

Xbox Free Games With Gold List For March 2022

free xbox games with gold march 2022
  • The Flame in the Flood (March 1 – March 31)
  • Sacred 2: Fallen Angel (March 1 – March 15)
  • Street Power Soccer (March 16 – April 15)
  • SpongeBob SquarePants (March 16 to March 31)

The truth or the square of spongebob received similarly negative reviews, although it was slightly better received than street power football. Spongebob Squarepants: Truth or Square is a 3D platform game based on Spongebob episode of the same name. It has a local co-op mode that allows the second player to take control of Plankton, and there are also some trivial questions for players to answer throughout the game as well. Spongebob diehards may find it enjoyable, but Xbox Live Gold subscribers have nothing to lose by claiming it while it’s free, whether they like it or not.

Later this month, Xbox Live Gold subscribers should find out what’s in store for them in April 2022. The Xbox Free Games with Gold program has come under heavy criticism lately as Microsoft focuses its attention on Xbox Game Pass, and fans So shouldn’t hold their breath for all the exciting things to hit the service next month, but again, there could be some surprises in store.

MORE: How Microsoft is making big changes to Xbox Live and Game Pass subscription services in the UK

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Twitch is overturning its fifth ban against popular streamer Amouranth, allowing her to return to the streaming platform after just three days.

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The Xbox app on Windows 11 and Windows 10 gets a new design


Windows 10 and Windows 11 users can start using a new version of the Xbox app for the operating system starting today. Well, at least those in the Xbox Insider program, as the app is currently only available in preview. Remember that this is the Xbox/game specific program which is separate from Windows Inside.

The Xbox app for Windows is updated to version 2203.1000.21.0, adding a new navigation system. Specifically, a new non-collapsible sidebar covering the main Xbox sections: Game Pass, Cloud Gaming, My Library, Community, and Store.

The current app that all Windows 11 and 10 users see has these menu items next to the search bar at the top of the app screen.


In the new system, the main sections have installed games available and a Game Pass button (another one) below the main items. Yes, Microsoft is really starting to push Game Pass. While the button in the main section will open Game Pass, the smaller secondary option shows available PC Game Pass titles.

More Changes

Elsewhere, the design/navigation tweaks also extend to the search field, which is now permanent. In other words, it no longer collapses, meaning you can use the search function on any page in the Xbox app.

Finally for the main changes in version 2203.1000.21.0, Microsoft put the notification and profile icons on the left instead of the rights. Click the profile icon to open options for support, settings, feedback, home, and more.

The new version of the Xbox app is available to test on Windows 10 and Windows 11. You can grab it now by heading to the Microsoft Store and downloading the Xbox Insider Hub.

Tip of the day: Windows lets you use Cortana to translate phrases, words, or phrases, with the results automatically read to you. This makes it especially useful for group scenarios, but you can also type if you’re unsure of the pronunciation. Cortana’s translation includes an impressive 40 languages ​​and uses machine learning to deliver natural results in many cases. Check out our comprehensive guide to learn how to use Cortana for quick translations.


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Amazon Luna review: Not quite on cloud nine yet

Amazon Luna review: Not quite on cloud nine yet

MSRP $9.99

“Amazon Luna is a working cloud gaming service, but its lackluster library means it won’t be anyone’s first choice.”


  • Smooth on mobile and Amazon Fire TV

  • Excellent Luna Couch function

  • Single channel approach

The inconvenients

  • Stuttering on web browser

  • Unimpressive range of games

  • No Amazon Game Studios titles

Amazon Luna has officially launched at the perfect time for me. A few months after moving to a new town for this job, I decided to visit my family in a rural part of Virginia. I would be without my PS5 and Xbox Series X, but a cloud gaming service would ensure that I wouldn’t be stuck on last-gen consoles and my Switch for console gaming.

Since I hadn’t checked out the platform since its late 2020 debut, I was excited to see what Amazon Luna was delivering now. The tech prowess was noticeable on the mobile and Amazon Fire TV versions of the service, but heavy PC service and a lackluster library meant it didn’t make a lasting impression this holiday.

Head in the clouds

Cloud gaming is a somewhat controversial segment of the video game market. The idea of ​​playing console-quality games directly from your phone or a web browser is very appealing, especially as hardware and games become more expensive and more powerful internet speeds and 5G is becoming more widely available. Instead of competing with Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo in the console market, cloud gaming is the path that big tech companies like Google, Facebook, and Amazon have decided to pursue with their gaming platforms. Unfortunately, the results were mixed, with Google Stadia being a particularly notable failure as it failed to live up to its lofty promises and lacked a large library of games at launch.

Now, Amazon is up to the task with Luna as the new top game streaming service. The service quietly entered early access in 2020, but just released its full version this month. And while it feels more complete and stable than Stadia at launch, it repeated some of the same issues throughout my journey.

On mobile, PC, and Amazon Fire TV, Amazon Luna streams games at a relatively consistent 1080p resolution. In cases where the internet connection becomes spotty, it will drop to 720p before completely stopping the game if Luna determines the connection is really that bad.

My time with mobile experiences and Amazon Fire TV has been extremely smooth. Resolution remained high, stutters were very infrequent, and input lag was negligible. Players will need to ensure they have suitable third-party controllers (the Razer Kishi is my go-to mobile controller) or Luna’s gamepad if they don’t want to use shoddy touch controls.

Playback through the Google Chrome web browser was not as stable. Stuttering and severe input lag were more common even on less demanding games like Garfield Kart: Furious Race or the retro titles in Capcom arcade stadium.

My time with mobile experiences and Amazon Fire TV has been extremely smooth.

Of course, the experience relies on internet connection, and while I was lucky enough to have a good one on this trip, your experience may vary. Overall, I’d recommend sticking with the Amazon Fire TV or mobile versions of the service for the smoothest experience.

Luna lacks a few Stadia frills like State Share and Crowd Play, but it didn’t promise them either. Instead, Amazon Luna’s unique cloud gaming feature is called “Luna Couch”, which enables cooperative cloud gaming. Playing pigs with this feature worked surprisingly well as my brother and I seemed to be in sync almost perfectly, and it had no impact on performance. I just wish there were more co-op games that take advantage of this feature at launch.

The Amazon Luna toy library in October 2020.

Overall, Amazon Luna didn’t disappoint with its game streaming capabilities during my trip, but it also didn’t stand out significantly outside of Luna Couch. This put a lot of pressure on the game library to make the service worthwhile for casual gaming fans.

Channeling games

Amazon Luna has a unique approach to its game library compared to other cloud gaming services. It offers individual channels that players can subscribe to in order to access certain games. On all platforms, Amazon Luna’s user interface is very simple. Games are organized by channel and genre, and one can quickly jump into a game from its Luna store page, so Amazon has definitely lowered the barrier of entry for the tech.

The Luna+ channel ($10 per month starting April 1) features a random mix of older AAA titles like Devil May Cry V and indies like call of the sea. The lack of a unifying theme for this channel makes it ideal for curious new owners, but be sure to like some of the games included before subscribing, as some gamers won’t find this lineup worthwhile.

The Family Channel ($6 per month starting April 1) has more accessible games kids might like, such as Garfield Kart: Furious Race and Spongebob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom. Meanwhile, the Retro channel ($5 per month) provides access to classics like dragon’s lair, Konami’s anniversary collections and all the games of Capcom arcade stadium.

While I like the channel-based approach of this service, the fact that no channel particularly appealed to me is a bad sign.

These channels will appeal to casual gamers, whether they’re kids trying to get into gaming or someone who hasn’t played a game since the 1990s. These are very specific demographics, however, and won’t necessarily fit hardcore gamers like me who are looking to subscribe to a cloud gaming service.

Ubisoft+ subscribers can stream many new games from Ubisoft directly from Luna. Although this channel provides the service with its most important and latest games, it requires another $18 per month subscription and is a strange outlier on Luna. The Jackbox Party Pack ($5 per month) channel, which gives subscribers access to all games from Jackbox Studios, is a standout and might be worth subscribing to if you host a lot of parties and don’t don’t already own many of these games. It made for a fun game night!

Amazon Luna has a Prime Gaming channel for Amazon Prime members.

Finally, a small rotation of games streamed through Luna are available at all times on the Prime Gaming channel. These free Amazon Prime games are worth checking out for Amazon Prime members looking to play some games when no other system is around or for those who want to dip their toes into cloud gaming .

The channel system allows Amazon Luna to target people looking for particular gaming experiences. That said, it neglects to have a range that’s generally appealing, and the services can get quite pricey if you buy them all, which we don’t recommend.

Content is king

By logging into the service during my trip, I hoped to find a hidden gem I had never heard of or games that could take advantage of Amazon’s cloud technology. Instead, I received a random catalog of older games, few of which benefit from cloud gaming or Luna Couch. While I like the channel-based approach of this service, the fact that no channel particularly appealed to me is a bad sign.

To engage a hardcore audience, Amazon needs to start adding more new games, first-party titles, and cloud-based experiences to Luna+. Recent hits from Amazon Game Studios like New world and lost ark are MIA, a huge missed opportunity to add meat to Luna’s paltry bones.

Amazon Luna may stutter less than Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, at least on Android, but if a service offers fantastic new games like Halo Infinite, Back 4 Blood, Forza Horizon 5and nobody saves the world on day one I’m going to choose to play this over a service whose most notable AAA game outside of Ubisoft+ is Control (which is also on Game Pass).

A person is playing a game on Amazon Luna on a laptop computer.

This vacation is one of the times that Amazon Luna will be very useful to me. Although the service itself ran smoothly, I’m ultimately uninterested and don’t know when I’ll use it again unless some big changes happen.

Our point of view

Amazon Luna is a decent cloud gaming platform let down by a lack of compelling experiences. Content is king, and with fierce competition from the now revamped Stadia and Game Pass Xbox Cloud Gaming, Luna doesn’t do much to stand out. It has uses for very specific audiences and situations, but that’s not enough to warrant a monthly subscription for most people.

Is there a better alternative?

Those looking for the best range of games on a cloud streaming service should subscribe to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. In addition to giving subscribers access to an extensive library of console and PC games, it includes Xbox Cloud Gaming for Android and web browsers, allowing users to play many of the included titles over an internet connection. For a cloud gaming platform with more unique features and exclusive games, Google Stadia is another option on par with Amazon Luna.

Should I buy it?

No. Unless one of the channels listed matches your specific interests, it’s not worth exploring Amazon Luna and paying for several subscriptions that you won’t engage with often and that you might possibly forget. Those still curious about the tech should get Amazon Prime and play all the Luna games currently available for free with that subscription.

Amazon Luna was tested on a Google Pixel 3a XL with a Razer Kishi, as well as a Lenovo laptop and Amazon Fire TV with an Xbox One Wireless Controller.

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The Xbox app for Windows 11 has received an interesting update

The PC Game Pass app for Windows 10 and 11 does the job, but it’s not great. For chat and social systems, it’s significantly slower than competing services like Discord and, while simultaneously offering fewer features. It also doesn’t give you access to game clips or screenshots from your console, unlike the older Windows 8-based Xbox Companion app. What the Xbox app makes up for in its usability areas is is the PC Game Pass library, which is rich in content and high in value.

For those running the Xbox Insider app on Windows 10 or 11, the app received a pretty substantial update today which not only updated the navigation significantly but also added some new features. that measure game performance.

Unfortunately, at the time of writing, the app appears to crash after only a few dozen seconds of use, but this is a beta version of the app and will likely be fixed before it is released. reaches the general public.

The app navigation is now on the left side, with installed games in the sidebar. Personally, I think it looks a lot nicer and makes a lot more sense than its previous incarnation, but ultimately it’s the features and tools that the Xbox app currently lacks.

The Xbox app is most often compared to Valve’s mature Steam software, which you think is a bit unfair given Steam’s age and long development cycle. Yet they still compete to some degree. The Xbox app is much more restrictive than Steam when it comes to modding games and accessing user-generated content, and as mentioned, is generally much slower in important key areas. I often wonder if Microsoft will drop this app if it manages to complete the Activision Blizzard acquisition and throw its weight behind the faster and more popular app instead for PC Game Pass, but I guess that is only speculative at this time.

Either way, it’s encouraging to see Microsoft continue to grow the Xbox corner of its Windows operation, and it will be interesting to see where the Xbox app goes in the coming year. Hopefully it will be ready for prime time once Starfield launches later this year.

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Check Out The Discounts With Xbox Deals With Gold Sale March 8-14, 2022

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Get 6 months of Xbox Live Gold for half the price

This offer is only valid for accounts created in Europe.

Normally, the Xbox Live Gold service costs around 40 euros every six months, but with this Instant-Gaming offer you will only pay 21.99 euros. 6 months ago exclusive service of Microsoft for this price, it must be a joke. You can enjoy free games, 24-hour online games with your friends, and discounts just for you as a Gold user.

You will have access to games of Xbox 360 and Xbox Oneand each month you will have the possibility to download totally free games to your console for endless enjoyment. Be careful, Game Pass should not be confused with Games with Gold, because the huge catalog that Game Pass offers each month will not fit into the latter, but many of the best ones will.

Save 45% on Xbox Live Gold

6 months of Xbox Live Gold at half price

And it is that you will not only have the possibility of playing online and downloading some of the best titles for Xbox 360, Xbox One and Xbox Series S|Xyou will also have access to thousands of TV shows and movies in high definition. And, as if that weren’t enough, the exclusive discounts in some games, they go from 50 to 75%.

Once the offer has been purchased, a code will be sent to your email which you can swap from the console itself in Home > Gold and Game Pass > Deal with Gold > Redeem a code. It’s easy.

If you prefer, you can also try 3 months Game Pass Ultimate, Xbox’s most premium service. With this you have included 3 months of Xbox Live Gold, 3 months of Game Pass and 3 months of Game Pass for PC. This service is more expensivebut that might be the only one in a few months or years, as it seems to come with the recent removal of Microsoft Xbox Live Gold 12 months.

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Xbox makes Xbox 360 RPG free for some

Xbox has made an Xbox 360-era RPG free for some, and by some we mean Xbox Live Gold subscribers. There are currently three games that all Xbox Live Gold subscribers can download for free, courtesy of Games With Gold. Two of those games are Xbox One games, or, more specifically, Aerial_Knight never give in and The Flame in the Flood. The third and final game is the Xbox 360 RPG, or more accurately, an Xbox 360 RPG dubbed sacred 2 fallen angel.

These three games are available for free for different periods of time. For example, Aerial_Knight never give in is only available for free until April 15. It’s also how long sacred 2 fallen angel is available for free. Meanwhile, The Flame in the Flood is free until the end of the month. This is just a window to claim the games and add them to your library. As long as you do that, you can enjoy all those games beyond that window, as long as you maintain an Xbox Live Gold subscription, that is.

Below, you can read more about all three games and also check out a trailer for all three games:

Flame in the Flood: Complete Edition – “A rogue-like river journey through the backwaters of a forgotten post-societal America. tools, remedying afflictions, avoiding vicious wildlife, and above all, staying one step ahead of the coming rains.”

Sacred 2 Fallen Angel – “Sacred 2 – Fallen Angel is a vast and deeply playable action-RPG. Embark on campaigns of light and shadow in a seamless game world that blends single and multiplayer gameplay, and is packed with quests, characters , adventures and mortal combats.”

Aerial_Knight never gives in – “Take the role of Wally. A mysterious figure who has recovered what was taken from him. Hope you are fast enough to outrun your enemies. Expose the truth and try to uncover the mystery of what happened to them. With With an average action movie runtime (about an hour and a half on Normal), the first part of this action-packed adventure can be enjoyed in an afternoon, and then you can improve your score. “

For more Xbox coverage, including the latest on Xbox Live and Xbox Game Pass, and of course the latest on Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S, click here.

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Xbox Game Pass subscribers should play Nier: Automata Before It’s Gone

With the range of captivating titles that the popular Xbox Game Pass service constantly offers its subscribers, it’s easy for some games to slip through the cracks. Given the rate at which games are added and removed from the service, some titles that players may have saved for a rainy day may be removed too soon, with NieR: Automata being no exception.

NieR: Automata, along with a few other titles, are unfortunately leaving the Game Pass service this month, meaning subscribers will no longer be able to download and play the title for free. Given the acclaim and the striking and unique nature of NieR: Automatait would be remiss for subscribers to let this title slip through their fingers without at least trying it.


RELATED: Babylon’s Fall Announces Limited Time Collaboration Nier: Automata Even

A breakdown of NieR: Automata

Nier Automata - Emil climbing the tower

NierR: Automata is a popular Japanese action role-playing game known for offering a highly stylized and thematically unique experience. Originally released in 2017 for PlayStation 4, Windows, and Xbox One, NieR: Automata was developed by Platinum Games and published by SqaureEnix, a company best known for influencing Final Fantasy series.

NieR: Automata is a sequel to the 2010 title Deny, a game that was also RPG-focused and known for its rich story and fascinating characters. These qualities carried over and expanded on for the sequel, which is widely considered by many to be one of the best JRPGs in recent memory.

The game is set amid an ongoing conflict between alien machines and human androids in a dystopian reality, with several of these human-made androids being the protagonists of the game’s deep story. Three distinctly different androids occupy take center stage in three respective parts, with three parts needed to fully understand the story. Elements of lore and world-building are organically passed down to the player during these games, with each of NieR: automatons endings telling different aspects of the story in a very effective way.

What’s more, NieR: Automata is renowned for its excellent, extremely varied and rewarding gameplay. Despite being a JRPG at heart, the game relies on hack and slash gameplay elements, but is not limited to that. Over the course of the three rounds available to players, players will find themselves embroiled in a variety of genre gameplay sections, ranging from top-down shoot ’em ups to text-based adventures, all in an open-world environment that serves as a seamlessly the larger story.

Why NieR: Automata Should Be Played Now


Despite the obvious reasoning to play NieR: Automata via Game Pass while it’s still available for the service, there are several other factors that should entice potential gamers to give it a try soon. Perhaps one of the most relevant is the upcoming anime based on the Deny franchise.

With the prestigious production studio Animex working on the anime of To deny: automatons, this adaptation is considered a success, even if it has a lot to do. Of course, playing the game now before this anime releases will provide would-be watchers with the context needed to fully enjoy this highly anticipated adaptation.

Regardless of that, it remains only the legacy and critical acclaim NieR: Automata makes it a game that is definitely worth playing. With the consistently rave reviews surrounding NieR: Automatacombined with the financial benefit of avoiding the game’s price of over $30, Game Pass subscribers should absolutely play the game while they still have the chance.

NieR: Automata is available now on PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S.

MORE: The Nier Automata 5th Anniversary Live Stream Has Teased Some Promising New Information

Elden Ring Player warned of a hostile bird, but it’s too late

While traveling the world of Elden Ring, a player receives a message from another player about an enemy bird, to immediately find a surprise.

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Forza Horizon 5 Weekly Challenges Guide – Series 5 – Summer

As the seasons change Forza Horizon 5 a whole new set of challenges are launched. With the move to Series 5 of these weekly deals, the entire Horizon landscape is changing, with the focus now shifting to the new PR stunts made available through the Horizon Rush takeover. Want us to help you navigate your way through the madness? We’ve got you covered with helpful tips, tricks, and melodies to help you complete Forza Horizon 5 – Series 5 – Summer Weekly Challenges.

Yes, the World Cup is over, but the party really begins now with Forza Horizon 5’s Series 5 – Summer Challenges. drift to circumvent. Oh, and there are also photo challenges and seasonal specials in the form of the Horizon Parade. Divided into different sections, you’ll have the chance to earn Forzathon Points, in-game cash, and new cars, all by completing the following steps…

Part 1 – The Weekly Challenge – Field Trip

To participate in this event, it may be advisable to complete the Speed ​​Trap Challenge this week, as the car you need is the prize to do so. Whichever way you finish, you need the #777 Formula Drift 2013 Chevrolet Corvette to participate this week.

The Air of Stock is perfect for all of these challenges, no need to blow your hard-earned credits this week.

Chapter 1 – Water Can’t Stop Me!

Simple really, hop on and drive it. The Falken paint job on this car was always one of my favorites in my 1/10th RC drift days, but it was a pain to hide and paint.

Chapter 2 – A way of life

Drifting is this car’s way of life, I guess, and to prove it, we need to earn six stars in a drift zone, or a variety of them.

I’m going to offer you the shortest, Giro Encorvado on the main Festival site. 15,000 points is enough for two stars, while three stars is only 30,000.

Easily doable in this car, especially if you hit the starting line already drifting.

Chapter 3 – Drift Season

We have to use Chevvy’s perfect weight distribution to earn ten ultimate drift skills (or electronic drift skills if you prefer). This can easily be done on a roundabout, of which there are a few dotted lines on the map, and with the correct application of throttle and counter steering you will be drifting for weeks.

One of my favorites is the cloverleaf junction on the highway. If you can do it while a skill song is playing, then a lot of points can be yours.

Chapter 4 – 2 for 1

The final chapter looks daunting, as you have to score over 100,000 Drift Points in less than two minutes in the Drift Zones.

However, it’s a piece of cake.

The polytunnels, in the middle of the map, are my favorite area, and with 120,000 needed for three stars, it will take much less than two minutes to rack up the necessary points. The key to this area is to keep drifting side to side, in transition, even on straight sections.

Part 2 – Seasonal Championships

There’s only one Seasonal Championship to compete in throughout this summer season, and it’s pretty simple at that.

Championship 1 – Party Animal

The reveler in question is a Jaguar and with an S1 900 class restriction it will be quite wild

I went with a beast that has served me well before, the 2012 XKR-S – the share code is: 138924656.

This is an on-road event, and so this tune should see you straight. It will be tight though as the pilot bots don’t want to give up, so be warned!

Showing your worth as a party animal will see you bringing home the 720S Spider.

Part 3 – Weekly Challenges

Challenge 1 – Seasonal Special – Horizon Parade

This seems, at first glance, quite easy. We only have to place third against average robot drivers to win, and we have to do it in the Festival Float vehicle. Simply get third place or higher to triumph!

Again, no settings required for this one, so save those pennies.

The race is tight at the start and the floats are wide so bide your time until the track opens up would be my advice.

A green pinata outfit will be yours if you complete the parade. At least it will mean you can finally get rid of that pesky snowman outfit you picked up on Christmas. There’s also a new Commendation tied to winning this race, which also nets you a groovy t-shirt. Premium!

Challenge 2 – Danger Sign – Metal Bird

Finally, PR stunts are making a comeback. I mean the World Cup was fun and all (although the UK did about as well as usual and came in 4th place) but it’s nice to throw cars at the ramps, right?

The car in question must be an S1 900 Class Hypercar, and the distance needed to get three stars is “only” 92m to complete the seasonal challenge. For three stars, it will be 121.9m, which seems oddly accurate.

I chose the Lamborghini Aventador SVJ for this one because in my opinion it is one of the best looking cars in the game. A little light tweak gave me a share code of 180357146. This is a new danger sign, above the wings of an airplane, and the climb is off-road and pretty tight, so rewinding just might be your friend here.

Fly away and find the Lambo Aventador ’12 heading your way.

Forza Horizon 5 Series 5 Summer Aventador

Challenge 3 – Speed ​​Zone – Desierto Vivente

Classic Rally, B Class 700 is the restriction for this event, and so I chose, as any sane person would, an escort. The 1977 Escort RS 1800, to be precise, and if you too want to put the Essex guy in you, the share code is 699552840.

Getting an average speed of 75 mph will win the seasonal challenge, but since this is a new speed zone, you might as well go all out and try to get three stars, right?

90 mph is your goal in this case. The approach from the south seems to be the optimal route.

A glorious Hoonigan Group A Escort Cossie will become yours.

Forza Horizon 5 Series 5 Summer Escort

Challenge 4 – Trail Blazer – River Rapids

We need an unlimited buggy in an A 800 class to complete this challenge, and we need to finish with ten seconds on the clock to beat the seasonal challenge. For three stars, you have twenty seconds left, so it may be best to try again in a faster car.

I gave the tasks this time to the trusty Aerial Nomad, a car that appears to be built in Meccano (remember that?). The melody I used is 144860625.

Unfortunately, there is a troublesome river in the way, so you may have to go further left than you think to squeeze under the wire.

You might only get a little Wheelspin for taming the rapids, but cross your fingers and you might just get more than a pair of shiny new shoes.

Forza Horizon 5 Series 5 Summer Nomad

Challenge 5 – Speed ​​Trap – East Resort

There is a problem with this challenge, and it is this – the car it is limited to, the KTM X-Bow GT4, is not a car that can be bought; it can only be obtained by getting twenty points in the playlist. That means it’s the one to come back to.

Once you have your hot little hands on it, you need to hit the new East Resort speed trap at 130mph for the Seasonal Championship to be over and dusted, but over 200mph for three stars. Even with the setting, I’m not sure the little KTM is up to snuff, but my setting is 156880070.

Don’t forget to take a picture of this brand new car for your collection.

Coming from the north, I reached 159 mph through the camera with this tune.

Push your skills to the limit and smash the 210 km/h barrier and you’ll be well rewarded with the #777 Corvette.

Forza Horizon 5 Series 5 Summer KTM

Challenge 6 – Drift Zone – Giro Encorvado

You should be well practiced at this by now if you took my advice earlier, and with only ten points required to complete the seasonal challenge, that should be a piece of cake, but right?

You have a car restriction this time, a Deberti DD Tacoma TRD, a drift truck if you will.

I had already set this thing up for racing, but with a flick of the handbrake it goes sideways like a champ. My sharing code? 948541039.

Another Wheelspin might just be yours. Again, no shoes please.

Forza Horizon 5 Series 5 Summer Tacoma TRD

Part 4 – Other Challenges

Every week we are lucky enough to enjoy a bit of variety away from the usual shopping. Series 5 – Summertime has you snapping some shots of your favorite track toy.

Photo Challenge – #PRTAAAYTIME

We need to take a photo of a Track Toy vehicle on the main stage of Horizon Rush. Simple, right? Well, the definition of Track seems quite broad, but as you will see in my photo, I have chosen an absolute classic.

What do you get for taking this photo? A coveted Horizon Rush t-shirt. What do you mean, you don’t like clothes?!?

Forza Horizon 5 Series 5 Summer Photo Challenge 1

Horizon Arcade – Minigames

As we’ve grown accustomed to over the past few weeks, we need to complete all three rounds of an Arcade event.

Look for the pink circles on the map, find one that matches your interests (Chaos events are always fun), and complete all three rounds to succeed. It’s that simple.

The move to Series 5 is one that should appeal to many Forza Horizon 5 runners, if only because the more we can get involved in PR stunts, the better. If you follow our guide, you should easily be able to pick up enough Season Points to nab the Epic KTM X-Bow GT4 (20pts) and the Legendary Pagani Zonda C for 40pts. Don’t forget that Daily Challenges work this way too – and they also give you plenty of Forzathon Points to spend in the Shop.

Those points will also put you on your way to the highly exclusive Forza Edition 5-Series car rewards, Mini ’65 FE (80pts) and the legendary Porsche 917 LH (160pts). You won’t be able to get either of these cars just by completing the Series 5 – Summer challenges, but combine them with what’s on offer in Fall, Winter, and Spring and the job will be a good ‘one.

Speaking of fall, stay tuned for our Series 5 – Fall Challenges Guide coming soon – it will tell you how to get the rare Toyota 4Runner and legendary Ferrari FXX K added to your garage.

It goes without saying that to enjoy what Series 5 and the summer have to offer, you’ll need the base game of Forza Horizon 5 on Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S or PC. It is free to download via Game Pass and available on the Xbox Store for Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and PC.

Let us know in the comments if this guide is helpful to you. We’d love to hear what you think of our tracks, even if they suck.

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Xbox app on Windows rolling out new game install/modify features

The Microsoft Store (formerly known as Windows Store) received a lot of criticism during the Windows 10 era because it lacked some of the features that were common in other app installers and game launchers. Many of these complaints also concerned the Xbox app, an additional component used for access to Xbox Game Pass and other features. Microsoft has completely revamped the Store for Windows 11, and now the company is rolling out some useful improvements for the Store and the Xbox PC app.

Microsoft is currently rolling out three important features for the Xbox app on PC – you can now choose where your games are installed, you can access files to “select games” and more games can be edited. These are all features that have always been available for games and apps installed outside of the Microsoft Store or the Xbox app. You can also move game files without redownloading and reinstalling them, which usually requires digging into folders with popular gaming platforms like Steam, in order for Microsoft to get brownie points there.

These features were already available to Xbox Insiders, but starting last Tuesday, Microsoft is rolling them out to everyone. Now that the Xbox app will be closer to the functionality of other game stores/launchers, Xbox Game Pass on PC is apparently a better deal than ever, especially as long as it stays at the current price of $9.99 per month.

Microsoft also revealed several games coming to Xbox Game Pass in the same announcement. Far: Changing the Tides is now available, with Kentucky Route Zero and Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy both arrive March 10. Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers also receive exclusive items for EA Sports UFC 4 on consoles and Infinite Halo on all platforms. Four games are also leaving Game Pass on March 15: To deny: automatons, Whores!, Torchlight IIIand Surge 2.

Source: Xbox
Via: Ghacks

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PC Xbox app now unlocks modding

The Xbox app on PC now unlocks Modding and the game will now indicate if mods are supported in the Xbox app itself. Steam has supported modding for a while now, so it’s great to see Xbox users now also able to customize their games.

Credit @ Xbox

These changes will also open up the ability to publish more games from the Windows Store and make Xbox much more like Steam in general. Soon, users will be able to customize their games downloaded from the Xbox app for PC, edit them, view cloud libraries, and even make changes to Windows 11’s new Auto HDR feature. Windows 11 insiders will soon be able to update our hands on a beta version of the Xbox app update, along with many other features, including the ability to view a game’s installer file, move games to new folders, and to verify and repair the installation of existing games.

The Xbox app for PC will also let users know which games do and do not support modding. Any game that supports game mods will have an icon next to it in the Xbox app for PC after the new update. The Xbox app (beta) now offers an easy way to enable mods for certain games where the game developer has chosen to allow mods. Click the triple dot next to the “Play” icon and select “Enable Mods” to make them work with any mod you have downloaded for this game. Click the “More Actions…” button , select “Enable Mods” and follow the instructions. Once you enable mods, you will automatically be able to easily access your modding games folder.

Editing Xbox PC Apps

Credit @ Xbox

After that, the games folder will become available for modding. In the right pane, click the “Change Folder” button under the “Game Installation Options” section. It will also allow you to move game folders to different drives. This will allow users to access folders where games are saved, save titles, and edit games on their computer.

Microsoft has done a great job with Game Pass, with new games being added to the subscription service on launch day. The latest app update lets you edit files locally and play all Microsoft Store games, including the best of PC Game Pass, making the deals even better than ever. Beaumont then confirmed that the update will also allow players to access their local files for various games in Xbox Games Pass.

Several Microsoft Store games currently support modding, but plans to give gamers access to game files on Windows are great news for the modding community. Microsoft is now releasing its Xbox app for PC, giving users more control over game files, including the ability to edit them. With the latest app update announced in a video this Thursday (11), Microsoft has finally committed to supporting mods and allowing games to be installed in custom directories instead of system folders. Windows.

This environment brings your mods, allowing you to watch mods from different mod distribution sites, download the files you want, and activate them in the Xbox app (beta). It’s simple; According to an article on the Xbox Support page, the first step in installing mods on Xbox One is to identify games that support mods. Once viewed, you need to click on the three vertical dots next to the big Play button, and if the game supports them, you will be able to see the Enable Mods option. Once you are successful, all you have to do is launch the Xbox game app and go back to the game details page and enjoy.

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Xbox Game Pass loses four games at once

Xbox Game Pass and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers on all platforms – or, more specifically, Xbox One, Xbox Series S, and Xbox Series X – have lost access to four games, none of which are major AAA games, but all of which have their fans and all of which scored on Metacritic in the ’80s. In other words, while they’re not the most notable departures, we’ll miss them. Of course, there’s always a chance that one or all of them will return in the future, but that’s rare, and when it does, it’s usually bigger games.

With all four games leaving the subscription service, subscribers also lost their 20% discount when purchasing the games, and any associated DLC, although in this case the latter is irrelevant as none of these games have DLC.

Below, you can learn more about each game and check out images of each game, thanks to official descriptions and official trailers:

Hypnospace Outlaw: “Hypnospace Outlaw is a 90s internet simulator where you scour Hypnospace’s wide variety of weird and wonderful websites to hunt down bad guys, while keeping an eye on your inbox, avoiding viruses and adware and downloading a plethora of apps that may or may not be useful.”

Killer Queen Black: “An epic platformer strategy game for up to eight players online or locally. Play Killer Queen Black casually in quick matches, ramp up the intensity in ranked matches, or invite friends over to a private room. Easy to play, hard to master, fun for all!”

Touhou Luna Nights: “Touhou Luna Nights is a Metroidvania title with a strong focus on exploration and action. Developed by Team Ladybug, creators of several fantastic action games so far.”

Stealth Inc. 2: A Clone Game: “In Stealth Inc 2, you play the role of a clone escaping from a sinister, high-tech testing facility. Stealth Inc 2 tests both your brain and your reflexes on 60 varied levels interconnected in a sprawling overworld.”

Xbox Game Pass and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate are available through Xbox One, Xbox Series S, Xbox Series X, and PC for $10 and $15 per month, respectively. For more coverage on all things Xbox, click here,

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Xbox PC app now allows modding

Microsoft is now opening up its Xbox app for PC to give users more control over game files, which includes the option of modding.


Although Microsoft Xbox The PC app offers players another opportunity to collect and play games, it has always been less than ideal to use due to its lack of key PC-specific features, such as the ability to choose the a game’s installation folder. This, however, has now been changed with the latest app update.

According to Microsoft’s update preview, the Xbox app on PC has now been opened up more than ever before, including support for some core features that PC gamers may find invaluable. While being able to choose where a game is installed is crucial, the fact that the app now allows players to edit local game files, just like they would on any other platform. PC gaming, is potentially more interesting.


RELATED: Xbox Gamers Can Get Classic Xbox 360 Games For Less In Latest Sale

The update, which is now available to all Xbox PC app users, enables local file editing and manipulation of all Microsoft Store games, including top games on PC Game Pass, making deal even better than before. Xbox Partner Director of Experiences Jason Beaumont also said some users may find that download speeds have increased in some cases, although it’s unclear what sort of optimizations may have been made in this regard. .


As Microsoft makes huge, sweeping changes to Xbox services across the board, gamers can be happy to see that the company isn’t forgetting how badly its quality of life features have been lacking in the past. By removing installation restrictions and allowing users to modify game files whenever they want, Xbox can still achieve feature parity with other major PC gaming platforms, such as Steam.

The ability to choose a game’s install folder and – potentially – mod is just the latest in a long line of app updates designed to open up the system and give players more control. Not too long ago, for example, Xbox finally made the “Share” button customizable, meaning users could also remap certain features of their controllers on the go. This suggests that Microsoft and Xbox, in particular, are looking at ways to make the platform more accessible than ever.

Moddable games apparently receive a special tag on their Xbox app pages that specifies them as such. This may suggest that the system is not as open as Xbox is in the process of doing so, as it implies that not all titles will be immediately handled locally. Other improvements, such as the ability to choose where a game is installed or saving its local files, should thankfully be available across the board, and they’ll likely help bolster record annual revenue even further. from Xbox in 2022.

MORE: Xbox Game Pass should drop subscription tiers to avoid confusion

Source: Xbox

Twitch Streamer and YouTuber Kika have died aged 21

Popular Serbian Twitch streamer and YouTuber Kristina ‘Kika’ Dukic, known for her high-profile CSGO game, dies aged 21.

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You can now install PC games to any folder with Microsoft’s Xbox app

Last year, Microsoft introduced the ability for some users to download PC games to any folder on Windows 10 and 11 using the Xbox app. This feature, which will greatly facilitate the process of installing games, is now available to the general public.

PC game downloads are now simplified

The new capacity will Windows 10 and Windows 11 users download games from the Xbox app anywhere on their PCthus removing restrictions otherwise placed on game files.

Until now, users could only download PC games from the store only in WindowsApps folder, which was present at the root of the drive. Also, users were not allowed to move the files to other folders or modify them. Now all of that will be gone and users will be able to choose which folder they want their games to be installed in.

You can now install PC games to any folder with Microsoft's Xbox app
Picture: The Edge

This feature will also allow users to get a backup of their games so that restoration is possible in the future. And game downloads via the Microsoft PC Game Pass will also be made easier. There is also the additional ability for users to modify games from the Windows store, thus mimicking a Steam-like functionality.

Another advantage is that this ability to save and download games in any folder also applies to existing games. Users would only need to select downloaded games through the Xbox app -> right-click on games -> opt for Manage option -> enable new game installation and management features.

This new update for the Xbox app is now available for Windows 10 and 11 users. Let us know your thoughts on this feature in the comments below if you end up using it.

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Xbox app on PC now lets you select folder to install games

Microsoft has done a stellar job with Game Pass, adding new games to the subscription service the same day they’re released. However, the Xbox app on PC has been widely criticized for the myriad of issues plaguing the experience.

Download errors, inability to install or update games are just some of the common issues users face while using the app. When it comes to general usage, the Xbox app lags the competition, especially when it comes to basic functionality.

The company recently addressed some of these concerns through the Xbox Insider Program, when it gave users the option to choose where games are installed. Prior to this update, the Xbox app would dump its game to a restricted access folder on the C: drive. Microsoft announced that this feature is now available to all Xbox app users on Windows 10 and 11, along with a few other improvements, in the latest Xbox PC app update.

How to choose the folder where your Xbox PC games are installed

1. Open the Xbox app

2. Go to the Settings page by clicking on your profile picture.

3. Select the General tab from the sidebar.

4. In the right pane, click the Change Folder button, under Game Installation Options.

select xbox pc games install folder

5. Choose the directory you want to use as the destination. You can also select folders on other hard drives.

Move Xbox PC games to another folder

If you’re running out of space on one of your hard drives, or added a new one, and want to install your games there, you can move the games there directly from the Xbox app on PC. To do this, right-click on a game listed in the sidebar of the Xbox app and select the Manage option from the menu.

manage your xbox pc games

Switch to the Files tab and click the Change Drive button. Select another folder and wait for the app to move the game files to their new location. This saves you from having to re-download the files. You can also check the integrity of installed games and repair them if necessary.

Create desktop shortcuts for Xbox PC games

You no longer need to open shell:AppsFolder via Run command and use Explorer to add shortcuts for your games. Use the Xbox app’s context menu to instantly create a desktop shortcut.

move xbox pc games to different folder

Access the Xbox PC games folder and edit games

To open the folder where you installed the games, just use file explorer and go to the directory you chose. This allows you full access to game files unlike before. If you want to install unofficial mods, patches, etc., you can do so by following the mod’s instructions. It can help you play some games in different resolutions, add command line arguments, etc., to improve your gaming experience.

Users who want to try out these features early can sign up for the Xbox Insider program. To do this, simply install the Xbox Insider Hub app. Open the app, click on the Previews section in the sidebar and select Windows Gaming to get preview builds.

These features are not revolutionary, they should have been there from the beginning. Microsoft is just catching up, and while there’s still a long way to go, the improvements bode well. The next thing Microsoft should focus on is improving Xbox app performance.


Xbox app on PC now lets you select the folder to install games to

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Xbox app on PC now lets you select the folder to install games to

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The Xbox app on PC now allows you to select the folder where you want to install your games. It also allows you to modify your games, move them to another player.




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March 2022 Xbox Game Pass lineup revealed; Updated Xbox app on PC

A new month arrives with March 2022, and Microsoft is here with some solid new additions to Xbox Game Pass, including Microsoft Flight Sim, Marvels’ Guardians of the Galaxy, and more! Check out the full lineup of titles heading to the service below and see if anything catches your eye for upcoming games in the Xbox family.

Here are the games coming to Xbox Game Pass for the month of March 2022:

Far: Changing the Tides (Cloud, Console, and PC)

Available day one with Game Pass: Embark on a stunning new journey in this atmospheric vehicular adventure set in a beautifully realized post-apocalyptic world. As the protagonist, Toe, you must navigate the flooded landscape at the helm of a unique ship that improves and evolves as you progress through your journey. Solve puzzles, navigate changing weather conditions, and delve into unknown depths in your search for a new home.

Microsoft Flight Simulator (Cloud)

Experience the joy of flying with Microsoft Flight Simulator, available today with Xbox Cloud Gaming on the devices you already own, including Xbox One, phone, tablet, and PC. Test your piloting skills against the challenges of real-time atmospheric simulation and live weather in a dynamic, living world. Heaven is calling!

Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII (Console and PC) – March 3

Lightning, the star of the Final Fantasy XIII series, is ready for his ultimate challenge. Discover a new game world, a new combat system and expanded customization features. The world will end in 13 days. Once again, his fate rests on the shoulders of one woman.

Kentucky Route Zero (Cloud, Console, and PC) [email protected] – March 10

Kentucky Route Zero is a realistic and magical adventure game about a secret highway through the caves beneath Kentucky and the mysterious people who roam it.

Lawn Mowing Simulator (Xbox One) [email protected] – March 10

Lawn Mowing Simulator is available now on PC, Xbox Series X|S and with Xbox Cloud Gaming, and will soon be available on Xbox One consoles! Take a break from the real world and enjoy the challenge and serenity of mowing the British countryside in Lawn Mowing Simulator.

Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy (Cloud, Console, and PC) – March 10

Launch Star-Lord’s jet boots for a wild ride through the cosmos in this third-person action-adventure game, a new take on Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy. With the unpredictable Guardians at your side, fight your way from one explosive situation to another, with original and iconic Marvel characters caught in a struggle for the fate of the universe. You have this. Probably.

Young Souls (Cloud, Console, and PC) [email protected] – March 10

Available day one with Game Pass: Gear up and start your solo or co-op journey to save the professor. Young Souls not only draws you in with its stunning art direction, clever beat ’em up gameplay, and RPG mechanics, but also with its sharp writing and incredible universe setting between two worlds that you’ll fall in love with. Plus, Ultimate members can play with Xbox touch controls from their mobile device from day one with cloud gaming!

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate Benefits:

  • EA Sports UFC 4 (Console): Fighter and Customization Pack – March 3
  • Halo Infinite (Console, PC, and Cloud) Tense Mongoose Bundle Pass – March 9
  • Century: Age of Ashes (Console and PC) Hjørrani Savannah Bundle – March 14

Here is the list of games coming out of Xbox Game Pass starting March 15:

  • Nier: Automata (Cloud, Console, and PC)
  • Whores! (Cloud, Console and PC)
  • Torchlight III (cloud, console and PC)
  • The Surge 2 (cloud, console and PC)

Microsoft has also revealed that it has updated the Xbox app on PC! You can read more below for more details:

  • You now have the possibility to choose in which folder your games will be installed
  • Access to files for some games you have installed, as well as options to repair and move your games
  • Ability to edit more games

You won’t have to reinstall your existing games, just right click on them in the left side of your app and click “manage” then “activate”. You can also move and repair your games from here.

Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

Source: Xbox

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Microsoft’s Xbox app now lets you set up PC video games in any folder » GossipChimp

The new Xbox app update is available now. | Picture: Microsoft

Microsoft finally allows Windows retailer video games to be placed in any freely accessible folder. The software started testing this feature last year, and it’s now rolling out to Xbox for all Windows 10 and Windows 11 customers today.

This will dramatically improve the Windows Store game setup process, allowing PC gamers to put titles in any folder they choose with unrestricted access to sports record data. It should deal with the many hassles of installing games from PC Game Pass, and Windows users should be able to back up sports recording data and restore it sooner or later.

The new Xbox app configuration options.

Previously, Microsoft had pressured Windows users to place PC games from its app retailer directly into a dedicated WindowsApps folder in the root of a drive. Although other storage drives have been supported, you cannot set video games directly to a folder of your choice or freely transfer or modify save data.

You won’t need to reinstall your current video games to enjoy the benefits of this update, neither. You can right-click games in the Xbox app and choose the handle, then allow the new game configuration and administration options. Any video games you install sooner or later will embody the flexibility of deciding which folder you put them in.

These changes may also open up the ability to modify additional games from the Windows Store and make the Xbox app even more Steam-like. The new Xbox app update is instantly accessible from the Windows retailer.

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Xbox Games With Gold March 2022 Launching Today

For Xbox gamers, the 1st of every month is a chance to sample new games through the Xbox Live Games With Gold program, which offers four games (two Xbox One games and two Xbox 360 games via backwards compatibility). March 2022 is no exception, with four new games to check out. It may not be a star-studded line-up, but there’s sure to be something for everyone.

The first is The flame in the flood, a popular indie roguelike survival game that sees players travel down a procedurally generated river, gather supplies, and try to survive against waves of creatures that want your blood. The Flame In The Flood will be available from March 1-31, so you have plenty of time to download it.

The next step is Sacred 2: Fallen Angel, an Xbox 360 RPG that’s sure to consume hours upon hours of your life between its Light and Shadow campaigns. Each campaign has its own end goal in mind, but will intersect at different times, making it a unique experience. Sacred 2 will be available from March 1 through March 15.

The second Xbox One game is street power football which is an arcade version of the beautiful game. Players will travel across the world to various “playgrounds”, play a variety of modes and unleash outsized superpowers to win matches against their opponents. Street Power Soccer will be available through Games With Gold from March 16 to April 15.

Finally, the second Xbox 360 game will be The truth or the square of spongebob, a video game related to the episode of the same name. Spongebob has forgotten the location of Krabby Patty’s iconic recipe, so the only way to find out where it went is to use Plankton’s Memory Machine. Chaos ensues. You can claim SpongeBob from March 16 through March 31.

Before March’s games go live, however, today is the last day to claim some of February’s games with gold, including Broken Sword 5 and Bunch of insects. Meanwhile, The aerial knight never gives in will be available to claim until March 15.

Games With Gold is part of Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscriptions, and gives subscribers unlimited access to claimed titles as long as their subscription remains active. Once your subscription expires or is cancelled, you will lose access to these games.

READ MORE: 11 Best Free Xbox Games

Some of the coverage you find on Cultured Vultures contains affiliate links, which provide us with small commissions based on purchases made while visiting our site. We cover gaming news, movie reviews, wrestling and more.

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Microsoft’s Xbox app now lets you install PC games to any folder

Microsoft finally allows the installation of games from the Windows Store in any freely accessible folder. The software giant started testing this feature last year, and it’s now rolling out to Xbox for all Windows 10 and Windows 11 users today.

This will dramatically improve the process of installing the game from the Windows Store, allowing PC gamers to install titles to any folder they choose with unrestricted access to game files. It should fix the many ailments issues related to installing games from PC Game Pass, and Windows users should be able to back up game files and restore them in the future.

The new install features on the Xbox app.

Microsoft previously required Windows users to install PC games from its App Store into a dedicated WindowsApps folder in the root of a drive. Although additional storage drives were supported, you could not install games to a folder of your choice, move them freely, or modify files.

You also won’t need to reinstall your existing games to take advantage of this update. You can right-click games in the Xbox app and select manage, then turn on the new install and manage games features. All games you install in the future will include the ability to choose the folder you install them into.

These changes will also open up the ability to mod more games from the Windows Store, and overall make the Xbox app much more Steam-like. The new Xbox app update is available immediately on the Windows Store.

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Xbox Live Gold in 2022

What many fans considered an absolute necessity in its past, Xbox Live Gold in 2022 seems to have undergone a notoriety shift now becoming the laughing stock of Microsoft’s gaming subscription service.

Early days

For nearly two decades, Xbox Live Gold has been viewed by Xbox owners as a must-have subscription. It served as the ultimate gateway to the multiplayer experience Xbox has to offer.

As a thank you to Xbox Live Gold members, Microsoft gave Xbox Live subscribers Fable III, Defense Grid: The Awakening and Assassin’s Creed II in 2013. These were the very first steps and the birth of the Xbox Games With Gold feature offering subscribers four new monthly Xbox Games. Fans were happy to pay for Xbox Live Gold to get their money’s worth. Multiplayer experience and monthly free games, what’s not to love?

Gold begins to tarnish

In 2021, Microsoft decided to drop the Xbox Live Gold requirement on free multiplayer titles and open up several social features to all gamers on Xbox. These features consisted of Party Chat and Looking for Group messages, the platform’s most popular social features. Players no longer need to pay the monthly Xbox Live Gold fee to play popular titles at the time such as Fortnite, Call of Duty: Warzone or Apex Legends along with other titles. Depending on the payment style, some players could now potentially waste their money. While no payment is required for these popular titles, other Xbox games still require Xbox Live Gold. These changes to the subscription service have significantly reduced its value, as various features that were once exclusive are now available to everyone.

The nail in the coffin

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate gives gamers a library of hundreds of games they can play on Xbox, PC, Android, and IOS, which also includes all first-party Microsoft versions as soon as they’re released. On top of that, all the benefits of Gold are included. When this new subscription service came out, gamers didn’t know how it would work, but in 2022 everyone now knows his name and the power he wields by having Xbox Live Gold writing his will.

With the success of GamePass Ultimate, it’s now clear where Microsoft is focusing. Players continually see new popular titles added to the service, but what about Games With Gold? While Microsoft pampers its Game Pass subscribers with its exciting titles, Gold subscribers are left with old and forgotten games from Xbox’s past.

Games with Gold March 2022

Xbox Games With Gold 2022 March Line up

As in previous months, Xbox Live Gold as well as Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers. The March title board unsurprisingly, for fans, are indie games and older titles.

The first two games coming in March are The Flame in the Flood, a roguelike survival adventure game, and Sacred 2 Fallen Angel, an action role-playing game set in a fantasy world.

Free from March 16 to April 15 is Street Power Soccer, an arcade-style soccer game, and SpongeBob’s Truth or Square, an action game based on the TV show’s special.


If gamers want value for their money, then undoubtedly Xbox Game Pass Ultimate is the way to go. It has all the benefits of Gold plus hundreds of games you can play on an assortment of devices. While a Gold Membership will get the job done, it just can’t compete with the Game Pass in 2022. It’s time to throw in the towel. Rest in power Xbox Live Gold.

You can find more coins like “Xbox Live Gold In 2022” and you can “As” The Game Haus on Facebook and “To follow” us on Twitter for more sports and esports articles from other top TGH writers as well as Varno!

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Steam might work with Microsoft on Game Pass for Steam Store

You’re probably familiar with Valve’s Steam service for downloading all manner of PC, Linux, Mac, and even the latest Xbox Game Studios games. Yet, at the same time, Microsoft also has its own Xbox app on Windows that lets you install its own games and other PC games like Destiny 2.

The two services compete with each other, but, according to an interview seen on PC Gamer, there’s a chance that Microsoft and Valve will come together to put a PC version of Xbox Game Pass on the Steam store (via Neowin.)

It’s just a rumor at the moment, and nothing has been confirmed, but Valve’s Gave Newell apparently seems very open to the idea. Asked by PC Gamer about Steam launching its own subscription service, or Xbox Game Pass Games, Newell had the following to say, praising Game Pass.

“I don’t think it’s something we think we should do ourselves, create a subscription service at this time. But for their customers, it’s clearly a popular option, and we’d be more than happy to working with them to get that on Steam.”

Xbox Game Pass may be affordable, but Steam is by far the most popular service for PC gamers and gamers in general. It was last reported in 2021 that Steam had 120 million monthly active users, with 62.6 million people using the service daily. Xbox Game Pass, meanwhile, has 25 million subscribers.

It would be interesting to see the two companies come together, much like what happened when Microsoft put its games on Steam in 2020. It could help sell more Xbox Game Pass subscriptions, and even help sell hardware. like the Steam Deck, which will get optimizations for Windows.

Of course, rumors will be rumors, but this kind of partnership has been done before. EA Play was added to Steam in 2020. So hold your breath and hope for bigger things in the future.

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Sorry, this profile can’t connect to Xbox Live on this console

Some Xbox gamers are reporting the issue where they are getting the error message Sorry, this profile can’t connect to Xbox Live on this console when trying to play certain games on their Xbox console. This post identifies the potential culprits and provides the most appropriate solutions that affected players can apply to successfully resolve the issue.

The full error message when this problem occurs reads as follows;

Account information

Sorry, this profile can’t connect to Xbox Live on this console. Please download it again.

Code: 80151006

This particular error occurs when the user tries to play a backward compatible Xbox 360 game on an Xbox One or Xbox Series X|S console, as the Xbox Live membership works normally for all users as they can play Xbox Gold games Card and use online features without problems. This issue appears to be limited to backward compatible games that launch on the new generation Xbox console.

The following are the most likely culprits of this error;

  • Xbox Live Core service issue.
  • Glitched temporary data.
  • Corrupted Local 360 storage folder.
  • Xbox profile stuck in the middle of the signing process.
  • Operating system corruption.

Sorry, this profile can’t connect to Xbox Live on this console

If you get the error message Sorry, this profile can’t connect to Xbox Live on this console on your Xbox console, you can try our recommended solutions below in no particular order to fix the error on your gaming device.

  1. Restart your Xbox console
  2. Check Xbox Server Status
  3. Clear Xbox 360 Local Storage (for Xbox One)
  4. Delete and add an Xbox profile
  5. Check if the game supports Smart Delivery (for Xbox Series X|S)
  6. Reset Xbox Console

Let’s take a look at the description of the process involved regarding each of the listed solutions.

1]Restart your Xbox console

You can start troubleshooting to fix the error message Sorry, this profile can’t connect to Xbox Live on this console by restarting your Xbox console.

Proceed as follows:

  • Press and hold the Xbox button on the front of the console for about 10 seconds to turn off your console.
  • Unplug your Xbox from the mains.
  • Wait at least 30-60 seconds.
  • When the time is up, plug your Xbox back into the power outlet.
  • Now press the Xbox button on the console or the Xbox button on your controller to turn your console back on.

In case you don’t see the green boot animation when the console restarts, you can repeat these steps and make sure you hold down the power button until the console completely shuts down.

Try the next solution if the error persists.

2]Check Xbox Server Status

Check Xbox Server Status

You may experience the issue due to a temporary glitch with Xbox Live servers preventing you from playing backwards compatible games – this is usually due to a scheduled maintenance period or some sort of unexpected outage issue caused by an attack DDoS or an unexpected issue with servers in your zone/region.

Basically, if the core services are down, your game ownership will not be validated, so you won’t be able to play the backward compatible game. In this case, you can check the status of Xbox Live at and check whether any basic services are currently not operational or operating with limited capacity. If all services are up, you can try playing the game again. On the other hand, if the servers are down, there’s not much you can do other than wait for Microsoft engineers to fix the issue – and keep checking the Xbox status page regularly until you see the server is back online and all services are running.

3]Clear Xbox 360 local storage (for Xbox One)

Clear local Xbox 360 storage

The error in view can also occur due to some sort of file corruption in your Local360 storage folder. This is a hidden folder that you can access after trying to launch the backward compatible game on your Xbox One.

To delete local Xbox 360 storage on your Xbox One console, follow these steps:

  • press the Xbox button to open the guide.
  • Go to the rightmost menu and click on the Settings icon.
  • Then navigate to System > Storage room to open system storage.
  • In the System Storage menu, select the Clear local Xbox 360 storage option.
  • Follow the prompts to complete the procedure.
  • Restart the console when finished.

After the console restarts, you can try playing the backward compatible game again and see if the issue is now resolved. Otherwise, try the next solution.

4]Delete and re-add an Xbox profile

Delete and add an account/profile on Xbox

If there are any inconsistencies with the Xbox profile you’re currently signed in with, you’re likely experiencing the current issue. In this case, to solve the problem, you can delete, then re-download and re-add your Xbox gamertag/profile on your gaming device.

Proceed as follows:

  • Press the Xbox button on your controller to open the guide.
  • Go to Profile & system > Settings > Account.
  • Under Account, select Delete accounts.
  • Select the Account that you want to delete.
  • To select Remove to confirm.
  • To select Close once you have finished.

You have now successfully deleted the Xbox profile on your gaming device. To now redownload and re-add your profile, follow these steps:

  • press the Xbox button on your controller again.
  • To select Add new in Profile & system.

To note: You will not create a new account when you select this option. You simply add your existing profile to the Xbox console.

If you forgot it, select I forgot my password, then follow the instructions to recover your account

  • Review the privacy statement summary, then select following.
  • Select your Login and Security Preferences.
  • Find out what you look like on Xbox, then select following.
  • Choose your color, then select following.

To note: The preference you are currently using at home appears with a check mark.

  • Press the Xbox button on your controller to return to the Homepage.
  • Scroll left from Home, find and select your gamertagthen select Login.

Now launch the backward compatible game again and see if the issue still occurs. If so, try the next solution.

5]Check if the game supports Smart Delivery (for Xbox Series X|S)

Optimized for Xbox Series and Smart Delivery-icon

With Smart Delivery technology on Xbox Series X|S consoles, when purchasing a game, the best version of the game is automatically delivered to your console, regardless of generation – no extra steps required to your part. Additionally, the ability to play digital and disc-based Xbox 360 and original Xbox games on Xbox One has expanded to include Xbox Series X|S and cloud gaming.

To check if you have the Xbox Series X|S optimized version of your game, follow these steps:

  • Go to My games and apps.
  • To select See everything.
  • In Gamesselect the filter then under All types of consoles to select Optimized for Xbox Series X|S games.

If the game is listed, your game has been successfully upgraded to the best version available. If the optimized version is released but your game has not yet been updated, follow these steps:

Move towards My games and apps > See everything > Manage > Updates.

The game may be waiting for an available update, which can happen if the automatic game update setting is not enabled on your console.

To find out if the games you own are backwards compatible, you can check your game library by following these steps:

  • Go to My games and apps > See everything > Complete library > All games held,
  • Then filter on All types of consoles.
  • To select Xbox 360 and Xbox Games Where Xbox One Games.

6]Reset Xbox console

Reset Xbox console

At this point, if nothing has worked for you in troubleshooting the current issue, you can reset your Xbox console – make sure to select the Reset and keep my games and apps option when performing the reset procedure.

I hope this helps you!

Similar item: Error code 0x8007045D, Xbox Live profiles cannot be downloaded to your Windows PC or Xbox console

Why does it say my profile can’t play on Xbox Live?

You may receive this message if you do not have an active Xbox Live Gold account, which is required to play online multiplayer games – sign up for an Xbox Live Gold account. If your Xbox Live Gold account has expired, you can renew the subscription.

How to get Xbox Live Gold for free?

Once you’ve earned 7,000 points through research, challenges, and rewards, you can use them to purchase a month of Xbox LIVE. Just head to the Xbox LIVE Subscription Rewards page – this is where you’ll claim your free month of Xbox LIVE.

How do I get my 14-day free trial on Xbox Live?

To get your free 14-day trial of Xbox Live, follow these steps:

  • After creating a Microsoft account, sign in to the subscription page.
  • To select Gold – 1 month FREE trial.
  • Then click on Add a credit card.
  • Enter your billing information, then click Next.
  • Follow the prompts to complete the registration process.

Do 12 month Xbox Live codes still work?

Microsoft retired its 12-month Xbox Live Gold subscriptions online in July 2020. You can convert your existing Xbox Live Gold subscription to the same period of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate through an ongoing promotion. The $1 Xbox Live Gold membership unlocks online multiplayer, free games, and more with a one-month subscription. A month of Xbox Game Pass is also available for $1.

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Insider Claims PlayStation’s Xbox Game Pass Rival Is “About to Launch”

PlayStation Plus is rumored to be launching a service to compete with Xbox Game Pass, and now the exciting project could be close to an official reveal.

Xbox Games Pass continues to impress gamers with its superb lineup of games. Blending both new and beloved classics, PlayStation gamers yearn for a similar implementation for PlayStation Plus.

Rumors of PlayStation’s “Project Spartacus” have been circulating for some time, but according to GamesBeat reporter Jeff Grubb, the wait might not be very long.


For many gamers, Xbox Game Pass makes buying Microsoft’s console easier.

PlayStation’s ‘Project Spartacus’ is ‘about to launch’

During his Grubbsnax premium show on GiantBomb, GameBeat’s Jeff Grubb revealed that he got some new information regarding PlayStation’s “Project Spartacus.” While the Game Pass-style service hasn’t been officially announced yet, Grubb explained, “It’ll probably be pretty close to that launch, something will probably happen by the end of this month.”

“I don’t think that necessarily means publicly, I think in terms of an internal milestone where the service needs to be,” Grubb added. Gamers have been mulling over PlayStation Plus to integrate the service, and it looks like “Project Spartacus” will opt for a tiered subscription model. Grubb said that “at the moment they are called essential, additional and premium”.

“The price is $10 a month for essential, $13 a month for extra, and $16 a month for premium,” Grubb continued. However, these prices may just be a “placeholder” as PlayStation is working on the service.

Xbox Game Pass logo on black background

Xbox Game Pass offers many games each month for console and PC players.

While Xbox Game Pass allows players to download full games, it seems PlayStation’s rival service doesn’t initially offer that luxury: “For a premium, $16 a month… do you get full games?” Not really, kinda… it’s like EA Play. You get full play trials. I don’t know if it’s for every game that comes out, but it looks like it.

Interestingly, Grubb mentioned that “Project Spartacus” might seek to focus on “classic games,” but clarified that he wasn’t sure “what classic games mean” in the context of the service. The “extra” tier will also contain games downloadable from PS Now: “250, 300 games, something like that. You don’t get cloud streaming, but you get 300 games you can download.

With Xbox Game Pass offering access to the biggest games on release day, PlayStation’s service will have to pull out all the stops to make it a worthy contender.

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The Apple Arcade Pro is an iPhone-inspired handheld gaming device with two notches and controls

The Apple Arcade app/service might seem like a half-baked effort by Apple to get into the gaming industry. You could say that Apple doesn’t even care about gamers or games beyond that. of the strange game based on Monument Valley or AR that they presented during their keynotes. However, the Apple Arcade Pro changes ALL that. Designed as a hardware concept that rivals the Nintendo Switch, Steam Deck or any of the Android-based gaming phones, the Apple Arcade Pro is a handheld console inspired by the iPhone, but with not one but TWO notches. which allow the console to have its own button layouts.

The Apple Arcade Pro is exactly what the company needs to get straight into the gaming industry. Google Stadia is on life support, Microsoft Xbox Game Pass hasn’t quite resumed yet, the Steam Deck isn’t hasn’t rolled out to many people yet, and literally the only handheld gaming device that really has a grip on the market is the Nintendo Switch…the Arcade Pro has the ability to massively tip the scales by doing two or three things: A. Defend AAA gaming on mobile, B. Make even better use of Apple’s A15 Bionic chip, and C. Allow Apple’s Arcade service to grow rapidly in a way that would likely even threaten Xbox Game Pass. from Microsoft. Unfortunately, there’s no way Fortnite will return to the Apple gaming ecosystem anytime soon…

The Apple Arcade Pro is inspired by the successful format of the iPhone. It comes with a stainless steel body in four different finishes and sports the same flat-edge design as the iPhone. On the front, however, things are a bit different. There’s no front camera, but the notch is still there. In fact, there are two notches on either side of the device, allowing the Arcade Pro to have its controls – an ambidextrous set of D-pads that change function depending on the game you’re playing. Around the edge, the volume buttons are replaced with left and right shoulder buttons, and the speaker pods now go from corner to corner, immersing you in audio as you game.

Move to the rear and there’s quite a bit of backtracking in terms of camera layout. Instead of equipping the Arcade Pro with the highest quality camera you’d find in the iPhone, the Arcade Pro instead features an iPhone X-inspired dual-lens system that sits farther into the corner, so that it is not obstructed by your hands while playing. Between the two cameras, however, is a LiDAR sensor that turns the Arcade Pro into the world’s first dedicated AR-based handheld game console.

Other standout features of the Arcade Pro are its improved Taptic Engine that allows for better haptic gameplay, Magic Joy buttons that mimic those of the Apple TV remote, 95W MagSafe charging on the back, and a new charging system. game exploitation, designed specifically to showcase the new gaming experience. The Arcade Pro not only taps into the Apple Arcade service, it completely redefines it and transforms the arcade service into its own standalone service, giving it a dedicated operating system that prioritizes games first, while also offering other features/apps like Netflix, YouTube, Apple TV, Safari, etc. Want to take a break from the game and just use Arcade Pro to watch content? There’s a Pro Stand-inspired Gravity Stand that lets you rest your device on it and easily watch online content. The concept doesn’t specify if the Arcade Pro has cellular services (there’s no SIM tray anywhere to be seen), though we could go to a branch and say it’ll still have messages, though. that with a front-facing camera, Memoji and FaceTime seem out of place.

Obviously this is a concept and it’s pretty much guaranteed that Apple won’t release a game console anytime soon (although it will, given the industry’s incredible profitability), but for people who think having an iPhone-inspired gaming device is an illogical idea, let’s not forget that for a very long time Apple had its own iPhone-shaped device that catered to a specific category – the music. The iPod Touch, for years, was an iPhone-lite that performed a limited set of tasks primarily focused on music and internet browsing…so it’s pretty much within the confines of an alternate reality to consider the iPod Touch. ‘Arcade Pro as a game-specific iPhone.

Is the Arcade Pro a good idea? On paper, it definitely is, considering the gaming industry is bigger than Hollywood, the music industry, the NBA, NFL, and MLB combined. Apple has a long history of avoiding games, but purely from a revenue perspective, it makes perfect sense considering Apple can’t even claim it’s a monopoly company here. Moneytalk aside, the Arcade Pro looks like the PERFECT device for kids…an iPhone Lite, if you will. Apple will have to develop the operating system in a way that allows incredibly rigid parental controls for youngsters, but the Arcade Pro has the potential to not just be a gaming device – it also becomes the communication device that parents feel comfortable giving their kids and letting them stay in touch…without spending a lot of money buying a kid an iPhone.

Creators: Junwoo Kim & Joonho Sung

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These 10+ games are coming to Xbox next week (March 1-4)

Picture: ELEX II

Another week, another batch of games on the way! Next week we have some obvious highlights to watch in Shadow Warrior 3, ELEX 2, the new Ghostrunner DLC and the Xbox Game Pass release FAR: Changing Tides, but there are plenty of other intriguing indies that caught our eye while writing this roundup…

Here’s what’s coming to Xbox next week:

New Xbox Releases (March 1-4)

Optimized for Xbox Series X|S

  • ELEX 2 (March 1): “Elex II is the sequel to Elex, the vintage open-world role-playing experience from award-winning Gothic and Risen series creators, Piranha Bytes.”
  • FAR: Changing the Tides (March 1): “Embark on a stunning new journey in this atmospheric vehicular adventure set in a beautifully realized post-apocalyptic world. Solve puzzles, navigate the changing weather…”
  • Ghostrunner: Project_HEL (3rd of March): “Take control of Hel, one of the bosses from the original games, as she descends Dharma Tower on her own bloody quest. Designed to appeal to new players and veterans alike…”
  • A musical story (March 4):A rhythm game set in the 70s. Explore the memories of Gabriel, a young man trying to come to terms with his situation through the links with his musical memory.
  • Legend of Ixtona (March 4): “Engage in strategic turn-based battles in different maps designed from an isometric view. Each character specializes in melee, ranged, or magic attacks.
  • Ryan’s Rescue Team (March 4): “Ryan’s friends have been kidnapped by the villains Dark Titan, Robo Combo and Packrat – and you are the only hero who can save them!”

Xbox One

  • conan chop chop (1st of March): “Discover a delightfully savage world full of epic boss battles, perilous dungeons, and endless amounts of loot and item combinations.”
  • ELEX 2 (March 1): “Elex II is the sequel to Elex, the vintage open-world role-playing experience from award-winning Gothic and Risen series creators, Piranha Bytes.”
  • FAR: Changing the Tides (March 1): “Embark on a stunning new journey in this atmospheric vehicular adventure set in a beautifully realized post-apocalyptic world. Solve puzzles, navigate the changing weather…”
  • Little Orpheus (1st of March): “Little Orpheus is a Technicolor side-scrolling adventure game inspired by classic films such as ‘Flash Gordon’, ‘Sinbad’ and ‘The Land that Time Forgot’.”
  • shadow warrior 3 (1st of March): “Shadow Warrior 3 takes the quirky first-person shooter series to the next level with a seamless blend of fast-paced shooters, razor-sharp melee combat, and a spectacular free-motion system.
  • 35mm (March 2): “This adventure story will let you explore several interesting locations in post-apocalyptic Russia, filled with a variety of artifacts and secrets.”
  • Farm Manager 2022 (3rd of March): “In Farm Manager 2022, as a farm manager, you must ensure the right level of harvest, employee satisfaction, animal health, equipment efficiency, and proper crop processing.”
  • Ghostrunner: Project_HEL (3rd of March): “Take control of Hel, one of the bosses from the original games, as she descends Dharma Tower on her own bloody quest. Designed to appeal to new players and veterans alike…”
  • A musical story (March 4):A rhythm game set in the 70s. Explore the memories of Gabriel, a young man trying to come to terms with his situation through the links with his musical memory.
  • Gunborg: Dark Questions (March 4): “Gunborg: Dark Matters is an action-packed arcade-style space platformer with smooth gameplay and an 80s synthwave soundtrack.”
  • Legend of Ixtona (March 4): “Engage in strategic turn-based battles in different maps designed from an isometric view. Each character specializes in melee, ranged, or magic attacks.
  • Music Racer: Ultimate (March 4): “Race along futuristic neon tracks. Gather the beats, grab the beat. The circuit is created in real time based on the music tracks in the game.”
  • Ryan’s Rescue Team (March 4): “Ryan’s friends have been kidnapped by the villains Dark Titan, Robo Combo and Packrat – and you are the only hero who can save them!”
  • What Lies in the Multiverse (March 4): “A story-based 2D adventure that could be called a comedy-drama. Filled to the brim with hilarious and cartoonish hijinks, the narrative also introduces the player to mature and deep themes like death, envy and obsession. .”

Xbox Game Pass titles

Only one Game Pass title has been announced so far, with potentially more to come next week.

Is there anything you particularly expect from this list? Let us know in the comments below.

Please note that some external links on this page are affiliate links, which means that if you click on them and make a purchase, we may receive a small percentage of the sale. Please read our FTC disclosure for more information.

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March 2022 Xbox Live Games With Gold titles revealed

Xbox Live Gold members will have exclusive access to these games for a limited time as part of games with gold. With Xbox Live Gold, you get the most advanced multiplayer service, free games, and exclusive member discounts on Microsoft Store games. Get Xbox Live Gold today to get in on the action or join Xbox Game Pass Ultimate which includes all of these fantastic perks plus access to over 100 high-quality games with Xbox Game Pass.

Xbox Live Gold members will have exclusive access to these games for a limited time as part of games with gold. So goes Xbox Game Pass Ultimate members, who receive all the great benefits of Gold plus access to over 100 high-quality games with Xbox Game Pass.

It’s time to announce the March Games with Gold lineup! On Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S, journey through post-societal America by The flame in the Flood and show off your moves in street power football. For our classic range via backwards compatibility, embark on Light or Shadow campaigns in Sacred 2 fallen Angel, and search for Krabby Patty’s lost secret formula in The truth or the square of spongebob.

The Flame in the Flood ($19.99 – Available March 1-31)

A girl and her dog travel on foot and by raft through the backwaters of a forgotten post-societal America. Hunt for resources, craft tools, cure afflictions, escape vicious wildlife, and most importantly, stay healthy in dangerous wilderness.

street power football ($29.99 – Available March 16 – April 15)

Show off your sick style in this action-packed fast-paced version of the beautiful game. Try out over-the-top tricks, game modes and playing fields, and unleash your soccer superpowers. Compete against street legends or your friends in a game to determine who will win the Street King crown!

sacred 2 fallen angel ($19.99 – Available March 1-15)

Choose to embark on campaigns of Light or Shadow to help heal the land of Ancaria or intensify the chaos. This game world seamlessly blends single and multiplayer gameplay, and is packed with quests, characters, adventures, and deadly combat.

The truth or the square of spongebob ($19.99 – Available March 16-31)

Spongebob has lost Krabby Patty’s secret formula. With your help and the help of some Bikini Bottom pals, SpongeBob must use Plankton’s memory machine to track down the happiest times of his life and find the formula.

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Elden Ring: Do you need Xbox Live Gold?

Like most Soulslike games, Ring of Elden lets you brave the horrors of its post-apocalyptic fantasy world with friends, or just anyone you can find online who is willing to help. If you’re an Xbox One or Xbox Series X | Gamer S, you’re probably wondering if you’ll need an Xbox Live Gold membership to play online.

Of course the answer is Yes, because you need an active Xbox Live Gold membership to play any premium Xbox One and Xbox Series X | S game online. Previously, you couldn’t even play free online games without a Gold subscription, but Microsoft has since made that possible.

Xbox Live Gold costs £6.99/$9.99 for 1 month subscription, £17.99/$24.99 for 3 months, £27.99/$39.99 for 6 months and £49.99 / $59.99 for 12 months, but if you shop online you can find deals for less. Having this subscription also means you can claim free titles each month, although these are not available when your subscription expires. You can also start your Xbox Live membership with a 14-day free trial. There’s also Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which is more expensive but includes Xbox Game Pass, PC Game Pass, EA Play, and Xbox Live Gold in one package.

Unlike other Soulsborne games, playing with friends in Elden Ring isn’t too complicated, as there are plenty of items needed to summon other players, and you’ll often come across spawn points for co-op players as well. Players will also be able to use matchmaking and in-game voice chat to coordinate your efforts against the various monsters.

Elden Ring is available on PC, PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X & S and Xbox One.

READ MORE: Elden Ring: how to activate voice chat

Some of the coverage you find on Cultured Vultures contains affiliate links, which provide us with small commissions based on purchases made while visiting our site. We cover gaming news, movie reviews, wrestling and more.

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Keep Drumming Taiko no Tatsujin with New Crossover DLC

We will admit to being surprised by Taiko no Tatsujin when it released on Xbox and Game Pass in January, as it offered a rather brilliant rhythm-action game with a totally diverse music playlist. It’s those tunes that are front and center again today, as the Taiko no Tatsujin drum continues to pound with the addition of multiple DLC packs – cross-game DLC packs on top of that.

Three new content packs are currently available to purchase, download, and add to your Taiko no Tatsujin: The Drum Master base game, each bringing something new to the table – Beat Pass Vol. 1, Game Music Pack and Studio Ghibli Pack.

We’ll take the Beat Pass Vol 1 first as it’s the biggest of the options currently available to gamers and it’ll set you back £15.99 cash. Pay and you’ll have the chance to enjoy the joys of six DLC packs, two of which are available today.

In all, the Beat Pass Vol 1 will add 24 new tracks to Taiko no Tatsujin, and while you’ll have to wait for DLC 3 through DLC 6 song packs (expect those in the coming weeks), DLC 1 and DLC 2 are here.

These are the two aforementioned Studio Ghibli and Game Music packs. Each of these are included in Beat Pass Vol 1, or can be purchased individually if desired.

the Studio Ghibli Bundle costs £3.49 and includes three tracks – My Neighbor Totoro – Ending Theme Song (from “My Neighbor Totoro”); A City with an Ocean View (from “Kiki’s Delivery Service”); and Merry-Go-Round of Life (from “Howl’s Moving Castle”). You can find the download on the Xbox Store.

Moreover, and this is the one that excites us the most, it is the Game music pack for £3.99. This adds no less than five new tracks, ripping tracks from Tekken 7, ACE COMBAT, RIDGE RACER, SoulCalibur, and GOD EATER. Full track names are…

  • – Heat Haze Shadow 2 (From Tekken 7)
  • – No return (from GOD EATER)
  • – Brave Sword, Braver Soul (From SOULCALIBUR II)

You’ll need a copy of the base game Taiko no Tatsujin: The Drum Master in your library to take advantage of these DLC packs, but with that playable through Game Pass, there’s no reason not to give it a try. From there, click on the Xbox Store links above, either for the full Beat Pass Vol 1 or the two individual bundles.

Let us know what you decide to pick up.

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Xbox Live announces new Twitch integration

Xbox and Twitch have agreed to a partnership that makes it easier to access and manage the live streaming service from the console menu.

It was officially announced that Xbox will now offer players an easier onboarding method Tic for their live broadcasts. Xbox Insiders tested the Twitch integration towards the end of last year, which allowed direct access to the live streaming service in the Xbox menu.

Recently, Microsoft has invested significant resources in its brand of game consoles. The multinational tech company has been on a bit of a buying spree over the past year, acquiring big-name game developers like Bethesda and Activision Blizzard. This appears to have forced rival Sony to take similar action with the purchase of Bungie, which coincidentally was the studio that once ran the iconic Xbox. Halo franchise. The model has garnered a lot of attention and has even caused some to compare Microsoft and Xbox to Disney due to the way the two companies acquire a large number of well-known franchises.


Related: No, Sony Doesn’t Own Halo Infinite Now

Now Xbox has taken another step to improve the quality of its gaming experience by making Twitch much easier to access. Players on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One can now access “Capture and shareon the guide and select “Live broadcast.” From there, players will need to link their Twitch account via QR code or navigate to the URL. Once linked, players can select “Go live nowto stream any downloaded game to their particular Xbox console. This new method will also allow gamers to manage game and mic audio levels, as well as provide a pause screen if one decides to switch games. along the way.

Xbox and Bethesda will hold a joint presentation at E3 2021 after Buyout 2

Despite seemingly constant scandals involving Twitch, the live streaming platform remains one of the best of its kind and it makes sense that Xbox would want to improve its relationship with the service. Microsoft’s console brand appears to be gearing up for a major push over the next decade with all of its recent purchases. Having a good relationship with a platform like Twitch sets the stage for showcasing more of its future products.

As for the sales figures, Xbox continued to fall short of Sony’s PlayStation lineup in recent memory. Microsoft executives, however, seem keen to change that narrative and seem to believe that gaming as a whole will play a big part in the company’s future. Given Microsoft’s recent track record, it wouldn’t be surprising if this Tic partnership is soon followed by something else substantial.

Next: Xbox Game Pass Twitter Account Probably Hacked, Tweets Deleted

Source: Xbox

Tobey Maguire, Andrew Garfield, Tom Holland Spider-Man

No Way Home Blu-ray includes an additional 20 minutes of Maguire and Garfield

About the Author

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Daily deals: 16% off Elden Ring for PC, Arcade1Up The Simpsons Arcade Cabinet for $399, ASUS GTX 1660 Ti Gaming PC for $799

Elden Ring releases tomorrow, and PC gamers can save 16% on Green Man Gaming. This is one game you don’t want to miss. In other deal news, score the Arcade1Up Simpsons Arcade Cabinet, complete with riser and stool, for just $399. There’s also a nice ASUS ROG STRIX GTX 1660 Ti-equipped gaming PC for just $799.

16% off Elden Ring for PC

If you’re looking for a game to keep you busy for dozens of hours, Elden Ring is your answer. Elden Ring releases tomorrow February 24th and we just gave the game a 10/10 rating here at IGN. There is currently no discount available for console gamers, but PC gamers can already get it with 16% off at Green Man Gaming.


ASUS ROG STRIX AMD Ryzen 5 3600X GTX 1660 Ti Gaming PC with 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD

ASUS ROG STRIX AMD Ryzen 5 3600X GTX 1660 Ti Gaming Computer with 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD

Walmart is offering this AMD Ryzen 5 3600X GTX 1660 Ti-equipped gaming PC for just $799. The GTX 1660 Ti is still a very capable video card that can handle just about any game at 1080p resolution. You certainly won’t find a more powerful video card for this price.

Arcade1Up The Simpsons arcade cabinet

Arcade1Up The Simpsons Arcade Cabinet with Stool and Riser

Arcade1Up The Simpsons Arcade Cabinet with Stool and riser

Arcade1Up released its Simpsons Arcade in November of last year for $529. Only 3 months later, you can get it for $130 off. Up to 4 players can take part in the classic Simpsons side-scrolling arcade game as Homer, Marge, Bart and Lisa; cabinet includes riser for standing play, lighted marquee, matching stool, and tin wall sign.

Alienware Aurora R12 RTX 3080 Computer for $2199.99

Alienware Aurora R10 AMD Ryzen 9 5900 12-Core RTX 3080 Gaming PC with 16GB RAM, 1TB SSD

Alienware Aurora R10 AMD Ryzen 9 5900 12 Core RTX 3080 Gaming PC with 16GB RAM, 1TB SSD

The RTX 3080 is far more powerful than the previous generation’s best video card, the RTX 2080 Ti, and is the best recommended video card for 4K gaming. The RTX 3080 Ti and RTX 3090 are the only (very slightly) more powerful cards, but they cost hundreds of dollars more. The RTX 3080 is paired with an AMD Ryzen 9 5900 processor, which is one of the best processors you can get right now, either for gaming or for workstation purposes. It has also been upgraded with liquid cooling. The rig comes ready out of the box with 16GB of DD4-3200MHz RAM and a generously sized 1TB M.2 PCIe NVME SSD. Don’t worry, even the power supply is up to par with a sufficient power of 1000W.

Nintendo Switch Online Subscription

12 month subscription to Nintendo Switch Online

One of the biggest advantages of the Nintendo Switch Online subscription over PS Plus or Xbox Game Pass Ultimate is that it’s way cheaper. That said, any additional discount helps. Nintendo Switch Online is required to play games like Super Mario Kart or Splatoon online, download custom maps in Super Mario Maker 2, play free retro SNES games, save your game data to the cloud, and more .

Logitech MX Master 3 Wireless Mouse

Logitech MX Master 3 Wireless Mouse

Dell is offering a $40 bonus gift card when you purchase the Logitech MX Master 3. This is one of Logitech’s newest mice, featuring a TrackAnywhere laser sensor, lightning-fast magspeed scrolling, “Flow Control” (connects simultaneously to 3 devices at once), updated USB Type-C charging port and 70-day battery life. This mouse is currently selling for $100 (without a gift card) everywhere else.

Logitech G Pro Wireless Gaming Mouse (Lightest Logitech Wireless Mouse)

Logitech G Pro Wireless Mouse

This is the mouse I currently use for gaming and I highly recommend it. Wireless mice usually weigh more than wired mice because of the battery. The G Pro Wireless bucks that trend by being by far the lightest wireless mouse Logitech sells at just 2.8 ounces. For comparison, the MX Master 3 Wireless weighs 5 ounces, the G503 Wireless weighs 6 ounces, even the popular wired G502 Hero weighs 4.2 ounces without any of its adjustable weights.

Nintendo Switch OLED In stock and out of stock

Nintendo Switch OLED

The latest Nintendo Switch OLED model has been incredibly hard to find throughout the holiday season. It’s back today, but only on Amazon, and for a very limited time. This Switch features a larger and more vibrant OLED touchscreen, an upgrade to the awful OG kickstand, an Ethernet port on the dock, and, of course, new Joy-Con colors. If you are thinking of buying one, don’t hesitate!

RTX 30 Series Video Card Bundles at Newegg

RTX 30 series combo sets available

If you’d rather build your own gaming PC instead and absolutely can’t wait for an RTX-series video card any longer, check out these combo bundles at Newegg. Get an RTX 3060, RTX 3070, or RTX 3080 video card that comes with a motherboard, SSD, RAM, computer case, or power supply. You’ll get a lot more value than spending the same amount (or more) on a scalper’s video card alone on eBay.

2021 LG C1 4K OLED 65″ Smart Gaming TV

65" LG C1 4K OLED TV (2021 model)

If money is no object, OLED TVs are considered the best TVs you can buy right now. Compared to traditional LED LCD TVs, they offer better picture quality, deeper blacks, better contrast ratio, wider color gamut and super fast response times. They excel in both gaming and viewing 4K HDR content. In terms of general usability, they use less power and they are very thin and lean against the wall. Among OLED TVs, the LG C1 is often seen as the standard-bearer; it’s the one TV that all other OLED TVs are compared to. LG OLED TV has several generations of optimizations under its belt and the latest C1 model is future-proof with technology like HDMI 2.1 ([email protected]), variable refresh rate, G-SYNC, the very latest LG A9 Gen4 processor and a revamped webOS TV interface.

48″ Gigabyte AORUS 4K OLED Gaming Monitor

After $200 off coupon and $200 off discount

Gigabyte AORUS FO48U 48" 4K OLED Gaming Monitor with HDMI 2.1

Use code: FEB4SALE (and $200 off)

Gigabyte AORUS FO48U 48″ 4K OLED Gaming Monitor with HDMI 2.1

Use promotional code “FEB4SALE”

47% off $1,499.99

This is an excellent deal for a 4K OLED gaming monitor that features HDMI 2.1 inputs for [email protected] and VRR. That means it’s a monitor worthy of your RTX 30-series equipped video card (which has HDMI 2.1 outputs) or a PS5 or Xbox Series X console. Unlike an LG OLED TV, it lacks TV-centric features including Dolby Vision support and an integrated Smart TV interface, but it makes up for it with more connectivity options like DisplayPort, USB Type-C, and USB 3.0. You certainly won’t find a 48-inch LG C1 or CX OLED TV at this price, and the LG A1 doesn’t support HDMI 2.1.

Samsung EVO 512 GB micro SDXC card (new generation)

Nintendo Switch Compatibility

Samsung EVO Select 512 GB U3 A2 V30 micro SDXC card (new model)

Nintendo Switch Compatibility

Samsung EVO Select 512 GB U3 A2 V30 micro SDXC card (new Model)

If you’d rather grab your Switch games from the Nintendo eShop, you’ll need a reliable microSD card to go with it. Check out this 512GB option from Samsung, which is one of the most popular and trusted brands of microSD cards. With 512GB of storage, you’ll be able to download virtually your entire Switch library, plus all the new releases coming later this year, like Kirby and the Forgotten Land and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2.

Xbox Series S Console with Bonus 2nd Controller

Xbox Series S with 2nd bonus controller

Dell is offering the Xbox Series S game console (which comes with a wireless controller) along with a second Xbox Wireless Controller for just $327.99. It basically amounts to paying $28 for that second controller. Considering the Robot White controller normally costs around $60, that’s a lot if you were planning on picking up a second controller anyway.

Nintendo Switch for $279.99

Amazon Prime members only

Nintendo Switch with Neon Joy-Cons

Amazon Prime members only

Nintendo Switch with neon Joy-Cons

Woot, which is owned by Amazon, is offering $20 off a brand new Nintendo Switch game console to Amazon Prime members. We hardly ever see a direct price drop on a Nintendo Switch console; if there’s a deal, it’s usually in the form of a bundle or gift card. If you were expecting any kind of deal on the Switch, you won’t get anything better than this. Like most Woot offers, this one is probably too long.

Alienware AW3820DW 38″ 3840×1600 Monitor

Alienware AW3821DW 38" 3840x1600 Curved 1ms 144Hz G-SYNC Ultimate Nano IPS Gaming Monitor

Alienware AW3821DW 38″ 3840×1600 Curved 1ms 144Hz G-SYNC Ultimate Nano IPS Gaming To watch

Get Alienware’s biggest and best gaming monitor for $750 off, the lowest price we’ve ever seen. This monitor has a huge screen size and the resolution to back it up. It is one of the few monitors certified “G-SYNC Ultimate”. That means an even higher-end NVIDIA GSYNC processor is built into this monitor for better HDR, brighter image, and more faithful color reproduction. The IPS panel offers a true 1ms response time and 144Hz refresh rate.

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PS Now looks even more like Game Pass with its first launch, Shadow Warrior 3

PlayStation is closing in on its own Xbox Game Pass equivalent with its first-ever launch title PS Now.

A new post on the PlayStation Blog reveals that Shadow Warrior 3 will be available for free through the game streaming and download service on March 1, when it will also be available to purchase through more traditional means. That said, pre-ordering the game from the PlayStation Store will also unlock Shadow Warrior (2013) and Shadow Warrior 2, which you won’t get just by playing through PlayStation Now.

It’s a little surprising that Sony is taking this step for PlayStation Now, given all the rumors that have been circulating for months about its own large-scale response to Xbox Game Pass and the apparent disappearance of PS Now subscription cards from retailers. It may be a soft launch and indication of Sony’s plans for its new offering, or it may be its own thing entirely. Either way, PlayStation Now subscribers don’t have to wait to see what’s next to start reaping the benefits.

Shadow Warrior 3 was previously supposed to arrive in 2021, but developer Flying Wild Hog postponed its arrival in October to give him some more time to “sharpen his blades”. They already looked pretty neat considering all the demon dismemberment, but we’ll take them at their word.

It’s an exciting time to be a PlayStation fan, as Sony also recently gave the first look at its new and improved PSVR2 headsetwhose design was inspired by the PS5 console itself.

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Xbox Game Pass for PC is getting a huge new day one release

Xbox Game Pass for PC and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers just got a pretty huge new game on day one of release. Over the past year, Microsoft has taken steps to ensure Game Pass subscribers can get access to some notable third-party titles on day one of launch. Some old games that came immediately to Xbox Game Pass have included Riders, Back 4 Bloodand MLB The Show 22. Now that trend has continued once again, this time with a PC-exclusive title.

From this moment, Total War: Warhammer 3 was released on PC, marking the end of this beloved strategy game trilogy. Warhammer 3, which is developed by Creative Assembly and published by Sega, has not only just been released on Steam and other PC launchers, but is also available right now for Xbox Game Pass. This means that if you have an active Game Pass subscription for yourself, you should be able to download the title right now and start playing.

The launch of Total War: Warhammer 3 on Xbox Game Pass is a big deal overall, even though the game might not be on many people’s radar. In reality, Warhammer 3 could very well be the biggest title Xbox Game Pass subscribers receive in February 2022. Even if those who only subscribe to the console iteration of Game Pass will not be able to access total warthis is a huge plus for the platform as a whole.

If you want to know more about Total War: Warhammer 3 and its addition to Xbox Game Pass, you can check out a new launch trailer and game description as follows:

“The last roar of a dying god shatters the boundary between worlds, opening a portal to the Realm of Chaos. From this maelstrom, the four Powers of Ruin – Khorne, Nurgle, Tzeentch and Slaanesh – emerge, spreading darkness and the despair.

The stern warriors of Kislev and the vast empire of Grand Cathay stand on the threshold, as a vengeful demon prince swears to destroy those who corrupted him. The conflict to come will engulf everything. Will you be able to conquer your demons? Or order them?”

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Microsoft will remove Xbox Live services from Windows Phones

Starting in May 2022, achievements and progress on mobile-enabled titles will no longer apply to Xbox accounts

Microsoft has announced that it will stop supporting Xbox Live services through its Windows Phone series on May 16, 2022.

As of this date, in-game achievements and cloud saves earned on a Windows Phone will no longer be saved to a player’s Xbox Live profile, as noted. Windows Central.

Some games will likely still be playable, even if the online features no longer work.

“As of May 16, 2022, Xbox features will no longer be supported on Windows Phone devices,” the company said in an app notification. “As part of this change, earning achievements will be removed on Windows Phone devices. Some games may still be playable on your phone, but progress will not be saved to your Xbox profile.”

Microsoft last week committed to a series of Open App Store principles that will soon apply to the Xbox storefront, to allay concerns following the company’s pending acquisition of Activision Blizzard. society.

The company also recently revealed that it would change the way it presents information to Xbox Live and Game Pass subscribers following an investigation into auto-renewal practices. This includes informing users that subscriptions will be renewed, as well as clearer guidance on how to get refunded for an unwanted renewal.

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Xbox Live services will be discontinued on Windows 10 Mobile devices starting in May –

Profile saves and achievements included.

If you’ve stubbornly remained an avid user of your Windows Phone, regularly playing your Windows Phone games until the wee hours of the morning, you might want to know that Microsoft will no longer support its Xbox Live services on the platform from of May.

The company announced the news in a message shared with users of its Xbox app on iOS and Android (thanks Windows Central), noting that Xbox features will stop working on Windows Phone devices starting May 16 this year.

Although it states that “some” games will remain playable after this date, all online components will cease to function – achievements will be removed, for example, and progress made on previously supported games will no longer be saved on users’ Xbox profiles.

Xbox trailer – console games on PC, iPhone and iPad.

It’s not an unexpected turn of events, of course; Microsoft announced that it was ceasing active development on new Windows 10 Mobile hardware and features in October 2017, with the latest operating system security update arriving in January 2020.

Since then, Microsoft has expanded its Xbox wings into other more capable mobile platforms, with iOS and Android supporting a host of Xbox-Live related services, including game streaming via Xbox Game Pass Ultimate.

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Microsoft abandons Xbox Live services on Windows Phone

Microsoft is advising gamers that Xbox Live services on Windows Phone will be shut down on May 16, 2022. The message was posted in the Xbox app on Android and iOS devices and means that many online features of Windows Phone games that connect to Xbox Live will no longer be working that day (through Windows Central.)

According to Microsoft’s message, Xbox features such as earning achievements will stop working after this date. Some games may still be playable, but progress will not be saved to your Xbox profile. The full message can be seen below.

Starting May 16, 2022, Xbox features will no longer be supported on Windows Phone devices. As part of this change, winning achievements will be removed on Windows Phone devices. Some games may still be playable on your phone, but progress will not be saved to your Xbox profile.

The move should come as no surprise, as Microsoft ended support for Windows 10 Mobile in 2020. The end of support for Xbox Live on Windows Phones also allows Microsoft to focus its server power on more modern services, such as Xbox Game Streaming and the Xbox Game Pass. App.

Of course, if you have a Windows Phone and are currently enjoying Xbox Live services for all remaining games, it’s best to try and get 100% of these achievements as soon as possible. Because on May 22, there is no turning back.

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Master the elegance of Beat Souls on Xbox, PlayStation and Switch

Guitar Hero and Rock band have been slowly shelved, just as a new type of rhythm action game is emerging. On the back to see the rather bright Taiko no Tatsujin: The Drum Master wow the Game Pass crowds, climb the Beat Souls stairs to battle for the crown of the musical masterpiece.

Available to buy and download now on Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, PS5, and Nintendo Switch, Beat Souls is Eastasiasoft’s latest, but a far cry from the usual platforms and visual novels for which the editor is known.

This one costs £8.39 and puts players in the most dynamic settings as they hone their skills through a series of rhythm-action segments, dodging obstacles in an endless runner and racking up combos. in the process. With a super colorful visual style, cracking tunes, and plenty of songs to play, Beat Souls just might be a bit of a delight.

When you include a variety of difficulties – some of which we believe are completely impossible for a single human to solve – and the need to become one with the music at your fingertips, if you’ve been seduced by what Taiko no Tatsujin provided and want more of the same, that’s it.

We’ve been dealing with Beat Souls for quite a while now, well enough to be able to offer some thoughts on this. And it’s there our full review is coming, detailing what’s good (a lot) and what’s bad (not that much) about the way Beat Souls plays on Xbox Series X|S. Give this review a read!

When you are sold, head to the Xbox Store and nail the download you need. Beat Souls is playable on both Xbox One and Xbox Series X | S, the latter the LED fully optimized for the next generation. It’s also on PS4, PS5 and Nintendo Switch.

Description of the game:

Immerse yourself in a vibrant cyberpop world and dance your way to the high score in intense rhythm action! Music and intense action gameplay collide in Beat Souls, a high-speed rhythm game where you must dodge obstacles and collect spirits to rack up stylish combos on your way to the high score! Rest the Rhythm Yokai as you break out awesome dance moves and put on a killer performance! Cute and colorful anime aesthetic meets neon cyberpunk style for a unique look and feel to Beat Souls visuals, while the pumping soundtrack will keep you coming back for more! Master the elegant dance of dodging and jumping to avoid incoming obstacles while simultaneously moving your “Otomo” companions to collect souls. But be careful! Colliding with noise will disrupt your groove, reset your combo, and drain your stamina. If you run out of stamina, it’s game over. Battle through 30 stages with adjustable difficulty as the legendary Shrine Maiden Mikoto, who has the power to communicate with yokai through dance! Do you have what it takes to overcome the noise?

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10 Xbox Rumors That Turned Out To Be False

Companies like Sony, Nintendo, and Sega have dominated the home video game market for decades, and many gamers weren’t sure what to expect when Microsoft announced it would release its first game console in November 2001. he company was primarily a software company since its inception, but the brand immediately proved to be a huge success capable of competing with the biggest names in the market.

RELATED: 10 Best Indie Games On Xbox Game Pass

As in any entertainment industry, rumors have been circulating everywhere Xbox’s twenty years of life. While many turned out to be true, even more turned out to be false. While some may seem like missed opportunities, others are better because they never materialized.

ten Xbox 720 console

Xbox 360 Design Lab Xbox

Since Microsoft chose not to use a simple numbering system for naming its consoles (they would always be one number behind PlayStation, which might confuse casual consumers), gamers weren’t sure what to expect from the tracking of the Xbox 360. Some thought the system would double the number to be called 720.

This rumor was fueled by the 2011 film real steel, which featured an advertisement for the Xbox 720 during one of its robotic battles. This name turned out to be wrong when Microsoft announced that its new console would be the Xbox One.

9 Future Activision games will be exclusive to Xbox

Call of Duty: Vanguard Dev Promises to Use Alpha Feedback

Microsoft surprised the gaming world by revealing its acquisition of Zenimax, but that news was followed by an equally shocking purchase: Activision Blizard. In addition to Microsoft now owning several classic games through the acquisition, this also meant that popular titles such as those from the Call of Duty franchise could potentially become Xbox exclusives.

Microsoft put an end to rumors and speculation when it issued a statement update its game store policies. Among the information was the assurance that not only current contracts with Sony would be honored, but that games like Call of Duty would continue to release on other consoles even after those agreements expired.


8 Xbox/Zune xYz

MP3 players may still exist, but like the Walkman or portable CD players before them, they have mostly been phased out due to advances in technology. Even in their heyday, however, Microsoft’s Zune never reached the popularity of Apple’s iPod line.

RELATED: 10 Classic Video Games With The Most Iconic Soundtracks, Ranked

Team Xbox published an article in 2009 claiming that Microsoft was planning a crossover device to connect their declining MP3 player with their Xbox gaming brand. The device, codenamed xYz, was meant to be a portable handheld capable of sharing movies, TV shows, music, and Xbox Live Arcade games with home Xbox consoles. This rumor ultimately turned out to be false.

seven Xbox series X | Release delay S until 2021

Stock Xbox Series X GameStop January 2022

Although Microsoft originally announced a November 2020 release date for the Xbox Series X | S consoles, rumors started circulating ahead of launch via sites like Forbes that the global chip shortage and Covid-related shipping delays would force Microsoft to postpone this to 2021.

With how often gamers see popular games delayed for various reasons, it didn’t seem like a stretch that the same could happen to Microsoft’s new systems. This turned out to be wrong, even though supply still hasn’t caught up with demand and many gamers are still struggling to find Microsoft and Sony consoles.

6 Series X catches fire

Xbox Series X catches fire Fake Vape Smoke Steam

There were several rumors in games that turned out to be false, but this hardware hoax almost caused serious damage to the Xbox brand. Gamers Were Already Wary of Consoles Launching After Xbox 360’s ‘Red Ring’ Issues, So Many Believed It a video posted on Twitter November 11, 2020 showing an Xbox Series X console going up in smoke and flames.

Microsoft quickly denied these allegations, and this video was indeed proven to be false. The most popular theory is that the poster simply blew smoke from a vape into the Series X vents.

5 The Xbox Surface tablet

Surface Book 2

Like the Zune before it, Microsoft’s Surface tablets failed to gain the brand recognition or popularity of Apple’s iPads. The original Surface was released in October 2012, and rumors started circulating in early 2012 that Microsoft was also working on a gaming-focused crossover release with its Xbox brand.

RELATED: 15 Best Mobile Games On Android Platforms

This rumor gained momentum when The Verge claimed several sources confirmed the information. This information claimed that the Xbox Surface would have a 7-inch screen and be able to play less demanding Xbox games. The Surface tablet brand has enjoyed reasonable success, but Microsoft has so far stayed out of the mobile gaming device market.

4 Microsoft will sell the Xbox brand

Xbox Free To Play Gamepad

With several popular games available on Xbox Game Pass and major studio acquisitions in quick succession, the Xbox name holds a very positive place with fans right now. However, that wasn’t always the case, and rumors swirled in the early 2010s that Microsoft was considering selling the Xbox brand to a company such as Amazon.

While this particular rumor was false, Xbox chief Phil Spencer recently open to ShackNews about Microsoft’s intention to drop or sell the Xbox brand altogether after poor Xbox One pre-launch marketing campaigns.

3 Microsoft will buy Sega

Sega Logo IRL

There were several Xbox rumors for 2022 that fans believed in, and one was that Microsoft was considering buying Sega. Following the tech giant’s acquisition of Zenimax, the parent company of old scrolls and Fall developer BioWare, in 2021, multiple sources said another big acquisition is coming soon.

Many believed that Sega was in a difficult enough position to seek a buyer, and the famous Japanese brand could give Xbox a boost in a country dominated by Sony and Nintendo. This rumor had no single source, but it was perpetrated by various media. However, it was quickly revealed that Microsoft’s next big buy was to be Activision Blizzard, and no further information was revealed on potential moves with Sega.

2 Hideo Kojima creates an Xbox exclusive game

hideo kojima studio kojima produces two games

The brain behind much of the metal gear franchise, Hideo Kojima went through a very public dispute with Konami as they restructured and refocused their game publishing methods and hierarchy. After Kojima’s infamous parting ways with his longtime publisher, the two parties’ enmity for each other has come out frequently and publicly.

After VentureBeat published an article in early 2021 about the deal, rumors swirled that the famous game maker was planning an exclusive collaboration with Microsoft in an effort to flex its newfound independence, but no further announcements or information have been revealed since. .

1 Microsoft is developing a competitor to Smash Bros.

Activision Blizzard Xbox Super Smash Bros.

the Super Smash Bros. The franchise has been a popular competitive and social series for decades, and so far no other entry in the genre has proven so popular. When Sony tried to emulate the formula with PlayStation All Stars Battle Royalerumors have speculated that Microsoft would try something similar.

Unfortunately for fans, Xbox chief Phil Spencer confirmed in an interview with Kotaku that Microsoft had no intention of creating their own smash clone. With brands like Halo and armament of war, many thought the franchise would be more mature and violent than its cartoon counterparts, but Phil argued that the Xbox team wanted to focus on new experiences. However, Microsoft’s recent and ongoing acquisitions of IPs Zenimax and Activision Blizard have rekindled fan desires for a platform brawler.

NEXT: 10 Best Xbox Game Pass Games With Touch Controls

Split image of Elden Ring, Horizon Forbidden West and Starfield promo art

6 Western-themed RPG video games to look forward to in 2022

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Rendezvous with Death in Infernax on Xbox, PlayStation, Switch and PC

It might be Valentine’s Day, but the date you need to worry about is the one with death – at least it will be if you face the brutality of Infernax.

Available to buy and download now on Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Nintendo Switch, and PC, Infernax from the Berzerk Studios team is a fitting homage to the old-school NES action of yesteryear. .

Sold as a 2D splatter fest, paying the asking price of £16.74 – or making the most of Game pass if you wish, as we expect that to fall into the pattern very soon – you will see taking on the adventures ahead, preparing to be totally splattered in blood maroon.

Aided by the publishing team at The Arcade Crew, if you’re looking for an 8-bit inspired adventure where slaying demons, battling bosses and spilling blood is real, Infernax is going to be for you. As you follow the life of a famous knight – Alcedor – in Infernax, you soon discover that unholy magic has begun to spread across the land. It’s up to you to stop him, aided by your trusty mace and shield combo.

Working as a side-scrolling adventure full of quests, Infernax will allow you and Alcedor to gain experience and Vital Gold as you go, helping to level things up, increasing stats and ensuring you have the skills and weapons necessary for the task ahead.

You should well expect a bit of a brutal challenge with Infernax, if only because the inspiration comes from when the game was as difficult as it ever was. If you’re in the market, you’ll want to head to your digital store of choice and make sure a download starts as soon as possible.

For us Xbox gamers, this is the Xbox Store who is the key holder, allowing Xbox One and Xbox Series X players | S to get involved. You’ll also find Infernax on PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, and PC through Steam. Stay tuned for a full review from us soon.

Description of the game:

Infernax is the adventures of a great knight who returns to his homeland to find it plagued by unholy magic. In your quest to find and destroy the source of this corruption by any means necessary, you will face ruthless creatures, dangerous beasts and precarious terrain.

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The Elder Scrolls Online will be temporarily removed from Xbox Cloud Gaming

By GR Staff

The Elder Scrolls Online is being removed from Xbox Cloud Gaming for a few months while fixes are implemented to prevent player disconnects.

Elder Scrolls Online Summerset Chapter Preview

The Elder Scrolls Online is temporarily removed from Xbox Cloud Gaming. The game will still be available for players to download to their consoles and play directly, but the MMORPG will not be available for streaming.

The Elder Scrolls Online has become one of the biggest MMORPGs in the industry since its initial release in 2014, consistently reaching around 20,000 players per month on Steam. The game has managed to maintain a dedicated playerbase through numerous updates and expansions.


RELATED: Elder Scrolls Online Reveals High Isle DLC With Amazing Cinematic Trailer

The news was announced on the official Facebook page of The Elder Scrolls Online. The reason for this action lies in the frequent player disconnects that plague gamers during their time with the game. On a positive note, the Xbox Cloud Gaming team has discovered a hotfix that should resolve the issue. No exact date is given as to when the game will be available again for players to stream via Xbox Cloud Gaming, although it is expected to take a few months for the patch to be implemented.


The Elder Scrolls Online continues to receive developer support, and it’s not uncommon for MMORPGs that continually receive updates to occasionally experience technical issues. The positive side of this news is that the game is still very playable, as players can simply download the game to their consoles and continue playing.

This announcement is still likely to irritate part of the loyal fanbase that has built up over the past 8 years. Although the option will remain to download and play on console (assuming players have storage space for the elder scrolls online), this restricts players to console play at this time. The great thing about Xbox Cloud Gaming is that compatible games can be played on just about any device, from phones to laptops. While Xbox seems to be pushing more towards the software space, having one of its most requested MIA games in the cloud space won’t sit well with gamers.

That being said, The Elder Scrolls Online is still just one game out of over 100 titles available to stream through Game Pass. While there will be discouraged fans who will be disappointed at not being able to play their favorite MMORPG on the go, there are plenty of other options to fill the void left until the patch is implemented and elder scrolls online is operational again thanks to cloud gaming.

The Elder Scrolls Online is available now on PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S.

MORE: Elder Scrolls Online: High Isle Introduces MMO Trading Card Game

Source: Elder Scrolls Online/Facebook

Twitch Streamer and YouTuber Kika have died aged 21

Popular Serbian Twitch streamer and YouTuber Kristina ‘Kika’ Dukic, known for her high-profile CSGO game, dies aged 21.

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In the era of Game Pass, Xbox Live Gold shouldn’t exist

Since the beginnings of Xbox Game Pass, Xbox Live Gold has become very outdated. Game Pass is more than a top tier of an Xbox Live subscription, giving access to a large library of games while Xbox Live Gold offers nothing like it. The benefits that gold offers seem very meager in comparison.

As gamers flock to Game Pass for the selection of games on offer, Xbox Live Gold has been criticized for offering less value. Of course, Xbox Live Gold arrived long before Xbox Game Pass, but it hasn’t evolved in a big way. Charging players to access multiplayer games may have been Xbox style a decade ago, but it feels offbeat now that Game Pass exists, and the low perks of Xbox’s Games With Gold offerings rarely justify the cost. a Live subscription.


Related: The biggest Xbox games coming out in 2022

Xbox Live Gold has been part of the Xbox Series for a very long time, but Game Pass overtook it very quickly. If Xbox Live Gold were to upgrade and evolve, it might gain a better reputation. However, considering how behind his time, it may be too late for him to recover. There are a few specific points that may explain Gold’s failures, and why it now feels like a relic that Xbox should part with.

Xbox Live Gold – Why paying extra to play online seems outdated

A multiplayer promo shot for Halo Infinite

One of the biggest original draws of Xbox Live and its paid subscription model was that it gave gamers the ability to play against and with other people online. It was a major boost for Xbox’s early multiplayer games such as Halo 2. At first, online gaming was a bit of a novelty, but it quickly caught on, eventually reaching the point where online multiplayer has become an industry staple and a major force in its own right. Nowadays there are entire games such as Monitoring and SMIT which consist entirely of online multiplayer matches, but not all platforms require a paid subscription to access them.

Over time, online gambling has become more and more common in games. Xbox Live Gold has become more appealing to many gamers as it has become more or less essential to getting the most out of several major titles, such as Halo and Call of Duty. Eventually it reached a point where online play felt like something that should be included by default rather than a feature locked behind additional payment. Almost every multiplayer game on Xbox needed it, so these games basically required an extra yearly charge to be fully enjoyed.

Related: Why Microsoft Just Bought Activision Blizzard

With more platforms not requiring a subscription to access online multiplayer and co-op titles, and with Game Pass presenting better value for money overall, Xbox Live Gold feels like an unwanted extra payment that gamers must agree to participate. basic characteristics of certain titles. Free games on Xbox no longer requiring Live, Microsoft seems to realize this. The days when connecting a console to the internet was a novelty are long gone, and Xbox Live Gold feels like a relic of those less established days. Offering little more than a key to playing online games, what Gold brings should really be basic functionality rather than a paid extra.

Games with gold have been made obsolete by Xbox Game Pass

Xbox Game Pass editing

Games With Gold is a program that has been part of Xbox Live since July 2013. Twice a month, players are offered a game to download for free, with each offer remaining valid until the next game. A free-to-play game sounds amazing, and Microsoft has offered some great games in the past. When the Xbox One was released, Games With Gold began offering Xbox 360 and Xbox One games through the service. However, the service has earned a reputation for offering less than stellar titles in recent years, with the February 2022 Xbox Games With Gold deals proving particularly unattractive.

When Game Pass launched on Xbox One, it was priced higher than Xbox Live Gold, but quickly showed its worth with the Game Pass library, with a large collection of titles players can download and play for free as long as they are part of the service. Even some new releases and major titles are offered through Game Pass, which has become a major draw for subscribers. Games will occasionally be removed from Game Pass as new titles are added, but any title on Game Pass can be purchased at a discount while it is part of the service. It’s basically a way for gamers to try out games before they buy them, and it’s a lot like a video game version of Netflix.

Xbox Game Pass has added over $6,000 worth of games in 2021 and is great value for money. It also eclipsed Games With Gold. As one of Gold’s only standout features outside of online play, it makes Gold look outdated now that a vastly improved version is available on the same console. While they could be considered different tiers of the same online service, Game Pass trumps Gold to such a degree that even this comparison seems unfair.

What should happen to Xbox Live Gold now that Game Pass exists

Xbox Live Gold Price Rise Reversal

With Xbox Live Gold looking more outdated over time, Microsoft should consider what it should do with the service. What Gold offers feels both underwhelming and vital for the console, given that it’s still needed for online play. Given the reviews, it might be time for Microsoft to change how Xbox Live Gold works. Even lowering the price of Xbox Live Gold may not be enough to change.

Related: Why Ubisoft+ isn’t coming to Game Pass (but Rainbow Six Extraction is)

One solution would be to expand free online gaming beyond free games to encompass all games with online functionality. While that would leave Gold’s only quirk as disappointing Games With Gold offerings, it would possibly lead to Gold being phased out, with Ultimate being the only additional tier. Considering Xbox Live Ultimate has the Game Pass library, that sounds like something worth the extra payment to access. Game Pass is one of the best online gaming services right now, and Microsoft was right to introduce it. However, it also highlighted why gold feels so weak in comparison.

As for whether Microsoft would actually phase out the gold, there are reports that the company is waiting for Xbox Game Pass to reach a milestone before considering dropping the gold. Xbox Live Gold has been a part of the service for a long time, and Microsoft probably wouldn’t let it go without a very good reason. However, the introduction of Xbox Live Ultimate and Game Pass has provided such an improved version of what Gold is already doing that it may be seriously considering making changes.

While Xbox Live Gold was once one of the leading online gaming services, it now sits in the shadow of Xbox Game Pass. Boasting a few perks in addition to online play, Gold feels like a relic from a previous console generation. After being overtaken by so many other platforms and services, Xbox Live Gold is obsolete.

Next: Stardew Valley Is A Major Win For Xbox Game Pass

Super Bowl DC 2022 trailer: All 17 DCEU characters and movies explained

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How to Cancel Xbox Live Gold on Xbox One, Series X/S

Xbox Live Gold has always been the paid subscription for Xbox games, offering full access to Microsoft’s gaming network with a range of exclusive benefits. This includes access to online multiplayer, various social features, free games and regular discounts. But Xbox Live Gold isn’t for everyone and coupled with some big changes to Xbox Live’s free tier, you might consider canceling your subscription.

How to turn off auto-renewal for Xbox Live Gold

By canceling your Xbox Live Gold subscription, understand that you will lose access to all of your previous benefits from the service. Going forward, multiplayer for most Xbox Live Gold games and other services will be inaccessible, including access to free titles previously obtained through Games with Gold.

  1. Go to
  2. Login to your Microsoft account.
  3. Navigate to the Xbox Live Gold subsection of the page.

  4. Click on Manage.
  5. To choose Disable automatic renewal.
  6. To select Confirm cancellation.

Once you complete the steps, your Xbox Live Gold subscription will not renew in the future. Your existing Xbox Live Gold subscription will continue until the end of the current payment period, which means that all benefits are still usable in the meantime.

Is Xbox Live Gold worth it over Game Pass Ultimate?

As of the network-wide Xbox Live Gold changes, introduced in April 2021, free multiplayer games no longer require an Xbox Live Gold membership. Great news for gamers who prefer to stick with titles like Apex Legends, Call of Duty: Warzone, and Fortnite. For anyone who drops $60 on a hit multiplayer blockbuster, they’ll then have to shell out extra money for Xbox Live Gold or Xbox Game Pass Ultimate if they want to play with friends.

Even for offline gamers who prefer story-driven games, it’s worth exploring the benefits of Game Pass Ultimate. In addition to access to the Game Pass library, you also get all the benefits of Xbox Live Gold. Although priced higher than Live Gold, Game Pass Ultimate includes the Games with Gold program, which awards two free games per month, including backward compatible Xbox 360 titles. These games never leave your library as long as your subscription is active, unlike Game Pass’ rotating game library.

The best package for all things Xbox, an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate membership includes access to PC Game Pass. If you split your game time between consoles and keyboards, you’ll have access to the PC side of the Game Pass library. These upgrades make Game Pass Ultimate much better value than Xbox Live Gold, which has lost its spark.

How to save on Xbox Live Gold

If you’re considering checking out Game Pass Ultimate instead of canceling Live Gold, you can upgrade your Gold membership to Game Pass Ultimate for as little as $1 through Microsoft.

Although Microsoft has discontinued its 12-month digital subscription to Xbox Live Gold, one-year codes can still be purchased from third-party retailers. The 25-character codes will either be masked on physical cards with a scratch off panel or emailed directly from online retailers. Redeem your code on the Microsoft website subsection here, and your membership extends instantly.

Similar discounts often appear for 3 month Xbox Game Pass Ultimate codes, so check local retailers regularly for price reductions and take advantage of Xbox Multiplayer savings.

Better Savings

Xbox Live Gold 12 months

Xbox Live Gold (12 months)

Secure a year of savings on Xbox Live Gold

Amazon has already offered huge savings on 12-month codes for Xbox Live Gold, a bargain for a one-year subscription. Other third-party retailers are offering similar deals, so keep an eye out for your local stores.

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Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard won’t save the games industry

In 1995, Microsoft produced a really bizarre pitch video for the press and the gaming public. Opening with images of Lossid Software’s iconic first-person shooter, the camera pans away from the violence to reveal it’s not LossMicrosoft’s only Space Marine gunning down possessed soldiers, but instead Microsoft President Bill Gates who was digitally inserted into Loss through the magic of the blue screen. Dressed in an ill-fitting black trench coat and wielding a shotgun, Gates speaks in a monotonous, hesitant tone: “These games are getting really realistic. Next year I might even play in the big Loss tournament.” The video ends with an eerie laugh and the question, “Who do you want to execute today?”

The video was made to promote Windows 95 as a gaming platform, but Gates’ real message seems to be, “I can take control of the games you play.” It took on new resonance when Microsoft announced in 2020 that it was acquiring id Software and several other game studios owned by ZeniMax Media. Microsoft now owns Loss.

Microsoft has always been a very defensive player in the games industry, taking steps to avoid being dislodged from its monopoly position in the tech economy by upstart rivals. When Bill Gates entered Losshe was doing it at a time when Loss was installed on more personal computers than Windows 95. The original Xbox video game console was developed out of fear that Sony’s PlayStation would take over the living room and turn people away from Windows PCs. In both cases, Microsoft was able to secure a crucial channel of capital. Using Windows 95’s DirectX technology, Microsoft was able to create and enforce a set of practical technical standards for graphics and sound cards, cementing its hold on the majority of the computer game market. With the Xbox, Microsoft has given itself a foothold in the “console wars” and the future of online gaming through its Xbox Live subscription service.

Over the decades, Microsoft’s attempt to consolidate more of the games industry for itself has only intensified. On January 18, 2022, Microsoft announced the acquisition of Activision Blizzard. This deal – struck for a record $68.7 billion – will give Microsoft control of some of the world’s most popular game franchises: StarCraft, Warcraft, Diablo, Call of Dutyand candy Crush.

This acquisition is good for Microsoft, which will now be the third largest gaming company behind Sony and Tencent. But it’s bad for game workers at Activision Blizzard, who are fighting for their rights at a company synonymous with workplace abuse in the games industry.

In its press release, Microsoft announces that it will “bring the joy and community of gaming to everyone, on every device”. Microsoft presents the deal as ushering in a new era of community and convenience, when in fact it represents control – control of technology, audience, market share and, above all, control of workers.

The acquisition comes at a time of significant turbulence for the games industry’s second largest publisher. Activision Blizzard is currently the subject of a lawsuit by the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) and an investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), for presiding over a systemic culture of sexual harassment , abuse, discrimination and retaliation against employees. The range of abuse is truly monstrous in its scope. The DFEH lawsuit describes a disturbing “frat boy” culture where female employees of Activision Blizzard and its subsidiaries were routinely subjected to groping and unwanted sexual advances at work and at professional events by their male colleagues, often with encouragement from work supervisors. Complaints to HR were either ignored or resulted in significant retaliation against complainants.

Although Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick professes ignorance of these events, a the wall street journal A November report confirmed that Kotick was aware of Activision Blizzard’s widespread misconduct and did nothing. In fact, Kotick himself once threatened a female assistant with death in 2006. These events led to walkouts, strikes and the formation of a collective group of workers, the ABK Workers Alliance, and also saw the attempted unionization of quality assurance (QA) workers at the Raven Software subsidiary.

While current Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella praises Kotick for its “commitment to real culture change”, Activision Blizzard continues to do everything in its power to halt the rise workers within the company. Activision Blizzard refuses to recognize Raven Software’s QA union, Game Workers Alliance, and also demanded that Raven’s 300 employees have a say in whether or not to unionize the studio, a clear union-busting tactic. Game workers at Activision Blizzard have already filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) over the threats, intimidation and discipline employees have received for publicly discussing and organizing against the abusive corporate practices.

Recently, Activision Blizzard’s Vice President of Quality Assurance posted a message in the company’s Slack channel, criticizing ongoing organizing efforts, stating that “a union does nothing to produce world-class games, and the bargaining process is generally not fast, often reduces flexibility and can be contradictory and lead to negative publicity. Amazingly, Bobby Kotick was allowed to remain CEO of Activision Blizzard until the acquisition closes in 2023, despite being at the center of Activision Blizzard’s abusive work culture.

Microsoft’s history of poor labor practices should indicate that the tech giant won’t be receptive to organizing efforts at Activision Blizzard. In December, Microsoft launched Infinite Halo, the latest installment in its flagship first-person shooter franchise, but the development and launch of the game has been anything but smooth. A Bloomberg report on the game’s troubled development details problems created by an overreliance on contract labor and a Microsoft policy that bars contractors from working for more than eighteen months . Bug testers under contract with Microsoft had their jobs terminated after successfully unionizing in 2014.

Asked about ongoing organizing efforts at Activision, Microsoft games CEO Phil Spencer declined to comment specifically, saying he was not an expert on unions. It is maddening but unsurprising that amid some of the worst abuses in a notoriously abusive industry, workers’ efforts to establish genuine responsibility and protection for themselves continue to be undermined.

In an interview with the Washington Post‘s Gene Park, Spencer describes the real priorities of the Microsoft acquisition: “I was looking at the IP list, I mean let’s go!” He struck a very different tone last November, when he criticized “horrific events and actions” at Activision Blizzard and said Microsoft would re-evaluate its relationship with the company. Most people probably had no idea that reassessing her relationship meant completely absorbing the struggling editor. But as Activision Blizzard’s stock price plummeted amid multiple scandals, it seems Microsoft saw its biggest opportunity to claim the tech world’s latest fad – “the metaverse” – before its competitors.

The metaverse has become the tech industry’s buzzword for the next “iteration” of the Internet, a loosely defined conceptual space of avatars, virtual worlds, and virtual reality in which to work, play, and shop. Although sold as a utopian vision of freedom and social connection, it actually means redoubling efforts to create proprietary platforms with “value-added” services. One of the big promises of the Metaverse is “interoperability” – the idea being that if you buy a cool, customizable costume in one proprietary virtual space, your avatar can wear it in another. Microsoft’s recent series of acquisitions from Mojang Studios (creators of Minecraft) to ZeniMax at Activision Blizzard reveal what it will look like in practice. There may very well be some sort of “interoperability” of purchased game items, but only within the walled garden of your chosen video game monopoly.

The metaverse built by Facebook, Microsoft and other big tech companies should be seen as an intensification of what Nick Srnicek calls “platform capitalism”, a term highlighting how digital platforms and the users (and data) that they aggregate have become central players, and resources, in many high- and middle-income capitalist economies. Under platform capitalism, building and maintaining audiences that can be mined for future data and profit is of the utmost importance. Microsoft’s Game Pass, a “Netflix for games” subscription service that lets gamers download and play hundreds of games for a monthly fee, already has 25 million users, and Microsoft is looking to bolster those numbers before competitors like Sony start rolling out their own versions. The 400 million monthly users Activision Blizzard attracts to its most popular games are just as important to Microsoft as their intellectual property rights.

The emphasis on keeping the public engaged so they can be tempted to buy cosmetics and other micro-products puts additional pressure on workers. Games are no longer discrete experiences, but now “live services” that need to be continually updated. Issues like the “crunch,” which forces gaming workers to punish unpaid overtime, are exacerbated by the need to sustain the recursive consumption of free online games. That means 60+ hour work weeks, no sleep and burnout.

To win the game, the workers must defeat the bosses. The ABK Workers Alliance continues to organize and struggle. The Communications Workers of America (CWA) helped organize Raven Software’s QA union and called for further investigation into Activision Blizzard for misleading investors after it recently told the SEC it was not at the aware of any work problems. Raven Software’s QA union is also filing an application with the NLRB, even as Activision Blizzard attempts to stifle it by assigning QA team members to other studios. Only when gaming workers can fully exercise their collective power will the bosses of Microsoft and Activision Blizzard be truly doomed.

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Free Games Roundup: February | VGC

There’s no more reasonable price than free, and whether you’re a PC or console gamer, there are regular opportunities to claim games for exactly that price.

However, sometimes it can be difficult to keep track of everything, which is why we’ve put together this helpful guide to all the free games currently available.

This article will be updated regularly as free games come and go, which means it should be up to date whenever you decide to check it out.

It’s worth pointing out, of course, that some of these “free” games are perks for signing up for subscription services that themselves aren’t free.

This guide is also only focused on games that usually cost money but have been made free for a limited time as part of a promotion or membership benefit.

There are many free games not listed here that can be found on your console or PC’s digital store: they have always been free in the first place and can usually be enjoyed for free, but with the option of spending money on upgrades.

That said, here’s our current list of free console and PC games you can claim right now.

PlayStation Plus – The free PS4 and PS5 games of the month

If you subscribe to PlayStation Plus, you get free games to claim every month.

These games can be “purchased” and added to your library, where you can download them at any time in the future.

However, if you cancel your PlayStation Plus subscription, you will no longer have access to it.

That said, if you ever restart your subscription, any PS Plus games you’ve claimed in the past will be available to you again.

The free PlayStation Plus games for February 2022 are:

  • Planet Coaster: Console Edition (PS5)
  • UFC 4 (PS4)
  • Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon’s Keep: A Unique Adventure in Wonderland (PS4)
Free Games Roundup: February

Xbox Games With Gold – Free Xbox games of the month

If you have an Xbox Live Gold membership (or an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate membership, which includes Gold), you can claim a selection of free games each month.

These games can be “purchased” and added to your library, where you can download them at any time in the future.

All Xbox 360 games included in Games With Gold can continue to be played even if you cancel your Gold subscription in the future.

However, all Xbox One or Xbox Series X/S games in Games With Gold can only be played if you are a subscriber. If you ever cancel your subscription, you won’t be able to play it (until you subscribe again)

Free Games Roundup: February

The Xbox Games With Gold titles currently available are:

  • Failed (Xbox One) – until February 15
  • Broken Sword 5: Curse of the Serpent (Xbox One) – until February 28
  • Hydrophobia (Xbox 360) – until February 15

Xbox One title Never Yield and Xbox 360 title Band of Bugs will be available later this month, starting February 16.

Epic Games Store – This week’s free PC game

With the exception of special occasions like the Christmas Recap, the Epic Games Store generally gives away one free game each week, with the game changing on Thursdays.

At the moment, players can claim Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lairby Playtonic Games.

Free Games Roundup: February

This can be claimed until 11am ET / 4pm GMT on February 10, when it will be replaced by Windbound.

To claim these games, players must create an Epic Games account. They can then “purchase” the games for free and add them to their Epic Games Store library.

Amazon Prime Gaming – Free PC games of the month

Included as part of an Amazon Prime membership, Prime Gaming gives subscribers free-to-keep PC titles and exclusive in-game content every month.

Depending on the game, these are either claimed and added to an Amazon games library which requires its own bespoke launcher, or claimed by logging into another online store such as the Epic Games Store,, or EA Origin.

All free games from Amazon Prime Gaming belong to you after being claimed, even if the Prime membership is canceled later.

Free Games Roundup: February

The Amazon Prime Gaming free games for February 2022 are:

  • Ashwalkers: A Journey of Survival
  • As far as the eye
  • Double Kick Hero
  • Golazo! soccer league
  • Stellaris (
  • World War Z: Aftermath (Epic Games Store)

Xbox Free Play Days – This week’s free trials

Xbox’s regular “Free Play Days” campaign runs this weekend, allowing Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate members to play the following games:

  • Naruto to Boruto: Shinobi Striker
  • Bad North: Jotunn Edition
  • Grek: Memories of Azure
Free Games Roundup: February

These games will be available to download and play for free from the Xbox Store starting Thursday, February 3 at 12:01 a.m. PT / 3:01 p.m. ET / 8:01 p.m. GMT until the same time on Monday, February 7.

However, these are not free to claim and keep: once the free play days period ends, the games will no longer be playable unless you actually buy them, so consider them free rentals on weekend.

See another free game offer that isn’t here? Email us and spread the word, and we’ll add it to the list.

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Phil Spencer pushed hard for Xbox Game Pass despite internal doubts: ‘I wouldn’t take no for an answer’

One of the biggest changes to the Xbox business over the past five years has been the introduction of Xbox Game Pass. Microsoft Games CEO Phil Spencer has been its biggest champion and, according to a new profile, a key reason Microsoft took a chance on the experimental game service in the first place.

In a Wall Street Journal profile, Xbox Game Pass — a service where, for a monthly fee, gamers can download and play from a library of games, including first-party Xbox titles — was born out of Microsoft’s success with its cloud services business. But that was never a guarantee that Microsoft would accept the proposal.

“In meetings, Mr. Spencer’s staff would present arguments as to why Game Pass wouldn’t work – publishers wouldn’t participate or it would cut into profits,” said former Xbox veteran Richard Irving.

28 Best Xbox Game Pass Games

“'[Phil Spencer] wouldn’t take no for an answer,” Irving added, saying Spencer was central to progressing with Xbox Game Pass. “He was always trying to find a way to make it work.”

While Xbox Game Pass was touted as a hit with around 25 million subscribers. There are reports that PlayStation is working on a similar service named Project Spartacus.

Unlike Netflix which streams movies and TV shows to devices, Game Pass subscribers can download games to their PC or consoles locally, although Xbox also offers Cloud Streaming. Another feature of Xbox Game Pass is being able to access first-party Xbox titles on day one of release.

Spencer is set to receive a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 25th Annual DICE Awards for her work at Microsoft, which includes introducing services like Game Pass. He also oversaw major Xbox acquisitions, including last year’s Activision Blizzard and ZeniMax Media.

Matt TM Kim is IGN’s Managing Editor. You can join it @lawoftd.

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Satya Nadella: Microsoft has “permission to build the next Internet”


Shortly after being promoted to chief executive of Microsoft in 2014, Satya Nadella was called upon to abandon the technology group’s Xbox games division and focus its resources on cloud computing, to compete with rivals such as Microsoft. Amazon. But instead, Nadella saw an opportunity to build new customer bases through online gaming communities. His first contract as general manager was to buy Minecraftthe three-dimensional world-building game.

At the same time, it expanded Microsoft’s dominant position in personal and business software and expanded its cloud and server offerings. The group’s shares have increased eightfold under Nadella’s tenure, and it remains the largest software group in the world.

However, last month’s $75 billion deal to buy video game maker Activision Blizzard will also make Microsoft the world’s third-biggest games company by revenue, behind Tencent in China and Sony in the world. Japan.

Not only does this expand Microsoft’s vertical integration into games, giving it even more content for its Xbox console and PC game distribution systems, but it also shows how Nadella sees the future of online interactions – at work, in education and at home. He said the Activision purchase would also fuel the company’s move into the metaverse — the immersive, virtual and interactive worlds that Big Tech companies strive to build.

Here, in his first interview since the deal was announced, Nadella tells FT West Coast Editor Richard Waters how gaming will shape the next computing platform.

Richard Waters: When you arrived, most of Microsoft’s business was in enterprise technology, helping millions of workers do their jobs. And in the years that you’ve been there, the business has seen this incredible change with the move to the cloud. Now you’re buying a big game company, and I guess people are wondering, does it fit together? Is it all part of one story?

Satya Nadella: [In] the Microsoft I grew up in, I always think of three things, and we added a fourth. The three things we’ve always had are: we’ve built tools for people to write software; we’ve built tools for people to boost their personal and organizational productivity; and we made games. These are the three things Microsoft has been doing since time immemorial. The first game, I think, was built before Windows was around. existed under DOS. And so, for me, the tools for gaming, coding, productivity or knowledge work are at the core.

The thing we’ve successfully added – that most people thought we’d never be able to do – is become a business…well, really build business infrastructure…and business applications . And guess what? We do it now too.

I think these are the new things that we added, while [the other] three things have been there all my life… And the game, interestingly, is more integrated.

Even when Xbox came out 20 years ago it was sort of a side thing, whereas now… the future of gaming is [subscription service] Game Pass and xCloud and the console, of course, [and] a PC. One of my coolest features is that I can play the game instantly because I don’t even have to wait for it to download. I can just start playing in the cloud and then slowly stream it and use the local CPU.

So to me…it’s a lot more integrated than “oh, it’s a side bet”.

RW: How does helping people play games relate to the relationships with your customers and the communities you build? How do you help them live their life?

NS: Take what is happening with the metaverse. What is the Metaverse? Metaverse is basically about making games. It’s about being able to put people, places, things [in] a physics engine and then having all the people, all the places, all the things in the physics engine related to each other.

You and I will soon be sitting on a conference room table with our avatars or holograms or even 2D surfaces with surround sound. Guess what? The place where we’ve been doing this forever… is the game.

And so the way we’ll even approach the system side of what we’re going to build for the metaverse is, basically, to democratize game building… and bring it to anyone who wants to build any space and having essentially, people, places, [and] things digitized and connected to each other by their bodily presence.

RW: But the people who are playing these games, right now, they’re playing first-person shooters… It’s pretty clear why they’re into it and it has nothing to do with the metaverse – it’s just that they want a little fun. What do you see in the future? What are the people going to do inside this intellectual property that Microsoft is paying so much for?

NS: First of all, if you think about it, the genres we’re in are much broader than first-person shooters. I mean we love Flight simulator. We like Minecraft. We love first person shooters or [car-racing game] Forza. Think about how we are able to even tell the story of motor racing through a cultural lens. This brand new game we produced [Forza Horizon 5] is all about Mexico, and the Mexican setting and car racing… You’re thinking “my avatar in Forza is my car” and how I decorate it.

For me, just being great at building games gives us permission to build this next platform, which is essentially the next Internet: embodied presence. Today I’m playing a game, but I’m not in the game Now we can start dreaming [that] through these metaverses: I can literally be in the game, just like I can be in a conference room with you in a meeting. This metaphor and the technology…will manifest in different contexts.

Another would be in the context of a very different business process. If you look at retail or construction, it’s also like when you create a digital twin: you have a factory and you try to visualize how to simulate how it works. It’s also a game exercise, except you’re not playing. You are trying to simulate the operation of a factory.

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Sony Acquires ‘Destiny’ Creator Bungie for $3.6 Billion

January was a full sprint for video game industry mergers, with major players scrambling to have the best console that money can’t buy due to supply issues. The latest: Sony has announced its intention to buy Bungie, the studio responsible for the creation of the two Halo and destinyfor $3.6 billion.

The deal is not only notable for Bungie’s first-class IP offerings, but also for being another exciting entry in the studio’s bizarre saga. Bungie was first acquired by Microsoft in 2000, becoming a household name and helping put Xbox on the map with Halo. After parting ways with Microsoft in 2007, Bungie eventually entered into a 10-year publishing deal with Activision Blizzard (which it left in 2019). Microsoft announced plans to buy Activision Blizzard earlier in January for a whopping $68.7 billion.

Not to be forgotten at last month’s game acquisition athon, Take-Two Interactive agreed to buy farmville creator Zynga for $12.7 billion. Where is Nintendo in all this? Stuck in the Kingdom of Sands Super Mario Odyssey and yelling at each other.

What shall we do now?

Well, Xbox and PC destiny fans can breathe a sigh of relief – according to Sony, the Bungie acquisition isn’t about creating new exclusive content for Playstation (at least for now): Bungie will remain a cross-platform studio with the ability to self-publish his games. Microsoft made a similar announcement for its deal with Activision, confirming that it plans to continue supporting Activision Blizzard games on competing platforms (as it does with Minecraft).

While these cross-platform friendly moves can be seen as the dawning of a smooth new era in console wars, they more likely indicate the increased industry focus on the subscription model.

  • Xbox Game Pass offers over 400 games that users can download and play for a monthly fee. Microsoft says the service has 25 million subscribers.
  • Destiny 2, Bungie’s most popular title, is free to play but offers season passes and expansions. The game has attracted 20 million players since 2019.
  • In December, Bloomberg reported that Sony was planning a new subscription service to compete with Game Pass.

For now, subscription services and popular IP offer Sony and Microsoft a shield against the battered supply chain.—MK

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PlayStation’s Project Spartacus doesn’t need to compete with Xbox Game Pass

With the recent announcement that Microsoft is buying Activision Blizzard, the future of console gaming has been a frequent point of contention. And with the company Acquisition of Bethesda having come through the last year, it is more evident than ever that this generation, as well as those before it, will never be the same again.

Xbox Game Pass is already a phenomenal deal, but now that Microsoft will own Call of Duty, Overwatch, Diablo, Warcraft, Crash Bandicoot, Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater, Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice and more, the service will only get better. In the announcement on Xbox websiteSpencer has confirmed that it will carry “as many Activision Blizzard games” as possible once the deal is done, both on console and PC.

Microsoft’s aggressive push to buy up studios has sparked curiosity within the industry: what is Sony doing now? His The PlayStation 4 generation was hugely successfuland throughout the past year, the company’s reign seemed certain to continue thanks to the PS5’s incredible technological advancements and stellar first-party lineup.

7 Tips for Conquering Demon's Souls

(Photo credit: Sony)

Some think that is not enough. It’s expected that Sony will have to “respond” to recent Xbox acquisitions, as if the two companies are competing so closely that there’s no way they’ll be successful simultaneously. Sony still has exclusivity agreements with Bethesda and Activision, which made Xbox’s acquisition of those companies akin to two titans battling for dominance.

And with rumors that Sony is creating a subscription service that will give gamers access to a library of downloadable games, the company is expected to compete even more with Xbox Game Pass. But for it to be seen on the same level, it needs to offer new first-party PlayStation exclusives as well as modern third-party titles. And not only that, it should match the competitive price of Game Pass.

Forbidden Horizon West

(Photo credit: Sony)

But this service, which runs through Project Spartacus, doesn’t need to be Sony’s “great answer” to Game Pass. PlayStation doesn’t have to meet Xbox on the same playing field. The hubbub surrounding this service seems like a classic case of the industry becoming reactionary at the slightest change. People have made similar claims about Xbox throughout the PlayStation 4’s lifespan.

Xbox was behind the times, and unimaginative fans often suggested that Microsoft should emulate Sony, focusing on third-person AAA exclusives with deep, cinematic narratives. People were also worried when Microsoft moved its games to PC because they thought it might mean the death of Xbox. But now the platform is in a great place, as Game Pass has completely evolved after the console wars.

Before the launch of PS5 and Xbox series X, I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend the former to anyone looking to get into gaming. Now, there are plenty of great reasons to buy both. PlayStation won’t suddenly lose its amazing first-party exclusives now that Xbox is pushing hard to develop Game Pass. Sony doesn’t need to “respond” to Microsoft. They’re both in great places, as the quality of PlayStation exclusives will ensure it remains a successful platform for years to come.

What should Project Spartacus be

Xbox has made the majority of its library backwards compatible with Xbox Series X, so the lack of love we’ve seen for older Sony libraries on PS4 and PS5 is heartbreaking. Microsoft even has a page dedicated to showing all the backward compatible titles on Xbox Series X; this list has nearly 5,000 entries.

Call of Duty Vanguard

(Image credit: future)

Sony has yet to reveal any plans for true PS5 backwards compatibility, but Project Spartacus might tone that down somewhat. The PlayStation Plus Collection is a good example of what Spartacus could look like, as it provides access to 20 PS4 titles that can be downloaded as long as you’re still subscribed to the service.

Spartacus is expected to have a much wider reach, offering dozens and dozens of titles on PSX, PS2, PS3, and PS4. If we’re lucky, we’ll even see PlayStation Portable and Vita games find a home on the service. I always have an original PS3 set up on my TV stand for whenever I feel like going back to old PlayStation games. Last year I took a trip down memory lane playing through the old Ratchet & Clank series, God of War and InFAMOUS.

And until Sony makes the PS5 the ultimate console for multi-generation PlayStation titles, my PS3 will never go back into the closet. Spartacus could be a great first step towards this generation’s backwards compatibility.


(Image credit: FromSoftware)

And while Microsoft’s backwards compatibility is excellent, users still have to pay for many of these older games. Xbox Game Pass offers many downloadable Xbox 360 games, but only a few Xbox games. PlayStation boasts such a huge catalog across many generations of legendary consoles, and if the company nails Spartacus’ library, it could be worth more than the subscription cost.

While some believe Spartacus will offer features similar to Xbox Game Pass, which allow subscribers access to newly released first-party and third-party titles, it’s hard to believe. Sony has been so successful in its current business model that it’s hard to see why they would adapt to the risky tactics of a competitor whose success has not been confirmed. Spartacus might offer a limited library of older first-party PS5 games, but the focus is more likely to be on smaller titles and hits from previous generations.

How much should Project Spartacus cost

It’s likely that Project Spartacus will only be available on modern PlayStation consoles (or possibly only PS5), meaning this subscription service should lower the cost of the console-only version of Game Pass. Sony might get away with a $10 price tag, but Spartacus’ library of games is unlikely to come close to what Microsoft will offer in the next few years.

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

(Image credit: Microsoft)

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate might cost $15 per month, but that’s because it gives the user access to games on both Xbox and PC consoles. Unless Sony somehow gets Spartacus on PC, it’s hard to imagine the service thriving in an environment where it costs more than a competitor that offers a wider range of games.

Alternatively, Spartacus could offer subscription tiers. Sony currently offers PS Now and PS Plus, each costing $59.99 every 12 months at retail value. Maybe Sony will offer some sort of “PlayStation Complete” package that will allow users to pay for all three services under one subscription.

Otherwise, Sony should focus on scaling back (or at least matching) Xbox Game Pass. The two services may not have to be in direct competition with each other, but it would be a bad idea if Sony released a less robust service at a higher cost.

At the end of the line

Sony doesn’t need to emulate Xbox Game Pass. Microsoft has found its own path to success this generation, and now everyone is freaking out assuming that PlayStation can only survive if it adapts to this business strategy.

Nintendo has been doing its own thing since the Wii, and now, the Change is one of the best-selling consoles of all time. Just this month, VGChartz reported that the Nintendo Switch has exceeded 100 million units sold. It has overtaken the Wii in lifetime sales and is sure to soon surpass the PlayStation 1. Wii U was a complete failure, but Nintendo didn’t follow one of the best-selling consoles of all time by copying Sony and Microsoft. Not only is the Nintendo Switch brilliant, it’s unmistakably Nintendo. These rigs thrive on being their own unique beasts. Constantly begging them to imitate each other will only lead to a bland and overly homogenized console ecosystem.

The PlayStation will be fine. Microsoft will find success after transforming its platform into something the gaming industry has never seen before, but there’s no reason to believe Sony has to go the same route.

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Xbox Live with Gold free games confirmed for February 2022 – and the crowds are getting soft

The February 2022 Games with Gold lineup has been officially confirmed. These titles will be available for download at no additional cost to anyone with an active Xbox Live Gold membership.

As usual with Games with Gold, all four games will be available at staggered intervals throughout February and the lineup includes two Xbox One games and two Xbox 360 titles. All four are playable on Xbox Series X through the backward compatibility.

Xbox Live with Gold Free Games: February 2022

  • Xbox One: Broken Sword 5: The Serpent’s Curse (Available February 1-28)
  • Xbox One: Aerial_Knight’s Never Yield (February 16 to March 15)
  • Xbox 360: Hydrophobia (February 1-15)
  • Xbox 360: Band of Bugs (February 16-28)

As its name suggests, Broken Sword 5: The Serpent’s Curse is the fifth title in the series of adventure games that casts you as American Geroge Stobbart and French journalist Nico Collard on the trail of a stolen painting. Naturally, this leads to the duo uncovering a murderous plot. If you find old-school adventure games a bit mundane, then the high-octane 2D side-scrolling action Aerial_Knight’s Never Yield should be more your speed instead.

Hydrophobia is probably the most interesting game on the list. It was an extremely polarizing game when it was released on Xbox 360 in 2010. Edge gave it 3/10, IGN an 8/10. How’s that for a mixed reception!

Over the past decade, Hydrophobia has become a cult classic and rather admired for its still very impressive water physics. The action game was supposed to come out in three parts, but its developer, Dark Energy Digital, went into administration and only the first chapter surfaced.

Xbox Games with Gold for February 2022

(Image credit: Microsoft)

Band of Bugs is a turn-based strategy game that lets you battle waves of scary bugs in single player or online multiplayer. It received mixed reviews when it launched in 2007, and to be honest, it might be best left in the past. Unless you really want to play something in February, you can probably skip this one.

The reaction on social media was fairly subdued, with some followers disappointed to see another month devoid of any real headline titles. The lineup looks particularly unfavorable compared to February’s PlayStation Plus offerings which are Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon Keep, Planet Coaster: Console Edition and UFC 4.

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Xbox fans call for an end to Xbox Live Gold

Xbox fans on Twitter are calling for an end to Xbox Live Gold. Today, Microsoft unveiled the February Games With Gold lineup or, in other words, the “free” Xbox One and Xbox 360 games that Xbox Live Gold subscribers will receive next month. Suffice it to say that Xbox’s very disappointing lineup of games caused some backlash, but not as much as expected, as many Xbox Live Gold subscribers were conditioned to be disappointed after months and months and months of lackluster offers. That said, while the backlash has been a little more tame compared to the past, “Xbox Live” and “Xbox Live Gold” have been trending on Twitter all day, and some have taken to calling for an end to the service. of subscription. .

For example, taking Twitter, Klobrille, one of the Xbox community’s most popular Twitter accounts, today attacked the subscription service, noting that it has no place in the ecosystem. Current Xbox, at least in its current form.

“Xbox Live Gold as an artificial console-only online paywall remains to contradict anything Xbox does,” Klobrille said. “Gold prevents the ‘frictionless vision anywhere’ the brand is aiming for – and giving away games like these only makes it worse. Gold has no place in the Xbox ecosystem .”

While many have echoed this stance — whether in their own tweets, retweets, or via likes — not everyone agrees with this. In fact, this appears to be a divisive point for Xbox fans.

“Why get rid of it? Some people don’t want Game Pass to believe it or not,” reads an answer disagreeing with the above takes “It’s a great way to get the Xbox 360 for free and experience the AA games.The problem is all hardcore thinks that every service should offer AAA or recognized games.How about finding dev games or free bc games.

Of course, the million dollar question is will Xbox actually unplug Xbox Live Gold? The answer is probably no. He earns hundreds of millions every month through Xbox Live Gold. While Microsoft is a massive company with huge profits, there are still bean counters that probably won’t leave more than a billion dollars on the table every year by scrapping the subscription service, especially if it doesn’t. there’s not even a single voice calling her. .

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For Honor and Valkyria Chronicles 4 are free for Xbox Live Gold subscribers this weekend

This weekend’s Free Play Days promotion includes For Honor and Valkyria Chronicles 4, both free and discounted until Sunday night.

xbox valkyria chronicles 4 free play days for honor

Free games and Xbox Live Gold go hand in hand as the service regularly offers its subscribers the chance to experience a wide variety of games for free for a limited time. The service’s popular “Free Play Days” have allowed gamers to get their hands on many of the hottest gaming titles, such as Rainbow Six Siege and Battlefield 2042 for free for an entire weekend, while generally offering discounts on featured games. Now, Xbox’s weekend play initiative has announced “Free Play Days” games for this weekend, featuring fan favorites from Ubisoft and Sega.


Xbox’s various services offer a wide variety of opportunities for gamers to get more for their money, with many accessing games in exchange for their subscription. Microsoft’s popular Xbox Game Pass gives gamers access to a library of over 100 full games for a low monthly fee with new games constantly being added, while its flagship console’s Gold subscription often offers gamers free trials. free for a limited time. For the last weekend of January, Xbox Live Gold Free Play Days are themed around strategy and warfare as they feature For honor and Valkyria Chronicles 4 free on weekends.

RELATED: Two More Xbox Free Games With Gold For January 2022 Available Now

Official Xbox announcement reveals that players with Game Pass Ultimate and Xbox Live Gold will be able to play both For honor and Valkyria Chronicles 4 for free this weekend, starting at 12:01 a.m. PST on Thursday and until 11:59 p.m. PST on Sunday. Players can get their free copies of the game through and the Microsoft store on PC or through the Gold member area of ​​the Xbox store to download on console.


The Free Play Days promotion will also feature deep discounts throughout the event, allowing players who enjoyed the games to continue playing even after the promotion ends. For honorThe standard edition of is discounted at just $4.50, an 85% discount from its standard price, and many of the game’s expansions and bundles are priced under $10 after discounts of 70% and more. Valkyria Chronicles 4 will also offer discounts for the Standard and Complete editions with their prices reduced to $12 and $15, respectively.

The free period comes right after For honor revealed the Pirate Class as the latest new character in the game’s fifth season. standard edition of For honor available through Xbox Game Pass. Between the chaotic action of For honor and the strategic complexities of Valkyria Chronicles 4this weekend’s Free Play Days should have a little something to appeal to a wide variety of players.

MORE: Xbox Free Games With Gold For 2021 Started The Year Strong, So What Happened

Source: Xbox

Halo Infinite was the second best-selling game last month despite being available on Xbox Game Pass

Halo Infinite becomes the second best-selling game of December 2021 even though it is available on Xbox and PC Game Pass for its launch.

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Xbox is changing the way it handles renewals for Game Pass and Xbox Live Gold in the UK

Xbox is changing the way it handles automatic renewals for Game Pass and Xbox Live Gold subscriptions in the UK, after government involvement. It is not clear if these changes will be made in other regions.

Microsoft’s changes were revealed as part of a report (marked by Eurogamer) following an investigation by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) in the video games sector which highlighted a number of concerns about Microsoft’s online gaming services.

According to the CMA, Microsoft-related concerns were particularly focused on the company’s automatic renewal processes and revolved around several key factors – whether or not the company was clear from the outset that its subscription contracts would be renewed. , how easy it was to cancel or turn off auto-renewal, and whether people may not have realized they were still paying for the service long after they stopped using it.

According to the report, the CMA said Microsoft has made a number of voluntary arrangements to improve its Game Pass and Xbox Live Gold auto-renewal services, which include the following changes:

  • Better information up front: Microsoft will provide more transparent upfront information to help customers understand their Xbox subscription – for example, stating that the subscription will automatically renew unless the customer turns off auto-renewal; when the subscription will automatically renew; How much will it cost; and how the customer can receive a refund after an accidental renewal
  • Refunds: Microsoft will contact existing customers on recurring 12-month contracts and give them the option to terminate their contract and request a pro-rated refund
  • Inactive subscriptions: Microsoft will also contact existing customers who have not used their subscription for a long time but are still paying. These customers will be reminded how to stop payments, and if they continue not to use their subscriptions, Microsoft will eventually stop accepting further payments.
  • Better information on price increases: Microsoft will provide clearer notifications of any future price increases and ensure users know how to turn off auto-renewal if they don’t want to pay the higher price

Following Microsoft’s action, CMA Executive Director of Enforcement Michael Grenfell released a statement detailing the need for companies to do the same. “Players need to be provided with clear and timely information to make informed choices when signing up for auto-renewing memberships and subscriptions,” Grenfell explained.

“We are therefore pleased that Microsoft has given the CMA these formal commitments to improve the fairness of their practices and protect consumers, and will offer refunds to certain customers. Other companies offering auto-renewing memberships and subscriptions are expected to take note of them and review their practices to ensure that they comply with consumer protection law.

It’s unclear if Microsoft will bring these changes to other markets, or if this will remain a UK-specific approach. We have contacted the company for comment.

For more recent news regarding Xbox Game Pass, be sure to check out this article detailing everything that’s made available on the service throughout this month.

Jared Moore is a freelance writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter.

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You need to play the best rhythm game from Guitar Hero on Xbox Game Pass ASAP

It’s wild to get excited about a musical rhythm game in 2022, but one Xbox Game Pass title in particular that wears its Japanese roots on its sleeve deserves the hype. Xbox has never traditionally been known for showcasing Japanese games so prominently, but that has changed in recent years. We have come a long way since the days of Guitar Hero and Rock band, and while those are well in the rearview mirror, a new Xbox rhythm hit has sparked excitement. The Xbox Game Pass library just got a whole lot more appealing with the latest additions. But what makes this music game so special?

Wild and wacky fun

Notes fly towards you from right to left, requiring you to press various buttons in the correct order and in time with the music.Bandai Namco Studios

As of January 27, 2022, Taiko no Tatsujin: The Drum Master will be added to Xbox Game Pass, marking the series’ first appearance on Microsoft’s platform. This series has grown in popularity in the arcades, with these versions featuring two giant drum peripherals so you can bang to the beat. While this is undoubtedly the definitive edition of the game, being able to play a version of it from the comfort of your own home is a welcome addition.

The console version is presented just like the arcade edition. You must beat the drums (or press the buttons) in time with the music, with various techniques to master across the game’s multiple difficulties and dozens of songs.

Although the general premise is simple, things can quickly get choppy and chaotic, especially on the harder difficulties. But even beginners can have fun and learn the ropes, as the button prompts just start, only requiring you to navigate between a few entries.

The good thing is that you don’t need to be ultra-precise to perform well. Different grades are awarded depending on when you hit a particular note. The closer you are to the center, the more points you’ll get, but even if you don’t hit the note exactly in time, you can still continue your combo, giving you a bit of flexibility.

The beat of a drum

Part of what makes this game so enjoyable is its art, which consists of bright, flat colors with over-the-top animations and sounds. Some of the characters look menacing, while others are cute and endearing, but all share a similar style that really pops on screen as you play.

Of course, a rhythm game is only as good as its song selection, and Taiko no Tatsujin: The Drum Master book in this department. The Xbox edition features over 70 songs, ranging from international pop, anime, classic, and even Namco originals. The Nintendo Switch version of this game features exclusive Nintendo-themed songs, so we’ve crossed our fingers that some tracks from the Xbox franchises will be available as DLC, though we won’t be holding our breath.

If you like western pop, you may not vibrate with Taiko no Tatsujin: The Drum Master‘s song selection, so keep that in mind. However, even if you’re not the biggest fan of these genres, the game itself is still fun and brings back memories of being in an arcade.

The drum device for Taiko no Tatsujin on consoles.bandai namco

Speaking of which, it’s hard to argue Taiko no Tatsujin not to mention the original arcade edition. This is, of course, the definitive way to play, but there’s actually a battery peripheral you can get for the PS4 and Nintendo Switch versions that makes it a whole lot more fun. Instead of giving you two drums, you only get one, and the pad is split into two different sides, mimicking the arcade drum.

Unfortunately, these controller peripherals aren’t interchangeable between consoles, and there’s no option for Xbox yet. But after its launch on Xbox Game Pass, it may attract enough attention to warrant the development of an Xbox drum controller.

Still, even playing with buttons is still fun, made even better by its inclusion on Xbox Game Pass. What would normally be a difficult game to recommend to anyone is now much more accessible thanks to its availability on Microsoft’s subscription service, which recently surpassed 25 million users.

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Microsoft is changing the way it handles Xbox Live Gold and Game Pass subscriptions •

Following an investigation by the UK regulator.

Microsoft will make changes to the way it handles automatic renewal of Xbox Live Gold and Game Pass subscriptions after agreeing to a set of commitments with the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

The regulator is currently investigating the automatic renewal practices of the big three platform holders: Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft.

Under the terms of the agreement, Microsoft will make the following enhancements to address AMC’s concerns:

  • Best initial information: Microsoft will provide more transparent up-front information to help customers understand their Xbox subscription – stating, for example, that the subscription will automatically renew unless the customer turns off auto-renewal; when the subscription will automatically renew; How much will it cost; and how the customer can receive a refund after an accidental renewal
  • Refunds: Microsoft will contact existing customers on recurring 12-month contracts and give them the option to end their contract and request a prorated refund
  • Inactive subscriptions: Microsoft will also contact existing customers who have not used their subscription for a long time but are still paying. These customers will be reminded how to stop payments, and if they continue not to use their subscriptions, Microsoft will eventually stop accepting further payments.
  • Better information on price increases: Microsoft will provide clearer notifications of any future price increases and ensure users know how to turn off auto-renewal if they don’t want to pay the higher price.

Michael Grenfell, CMA’s Executive Director of Enforcement, said: “Other companies offering auto-renewing memberships and subscriptions should take note and review their practices to ensure they follow the consumer protection law.

The CMA’s investigation will continue, and we’ll likely see similar changes from Sony and Nintendo in a moment.

While these changes are clearly welcome, it’s unclear whether Microsoft will apply the same changes outside of the UK.

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Microsoft Changes Xbox Live Gold and Game Pass Renewal Practices

Microsoft is changing the way it handles automatic renewals for gaming service subscriptions in the UK, with changes possibly coming to other regions as well.


The British government forced Xbox to modify its automatic renewal practices for gaming services following an official investigation by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA). According to CMA’s official statement, Microsoft will now have to change how it handles automatic service renewal across the board, with its Xbox Live and Game Pass services affected.

The CMA’s statement was posted on the official UK government website, citing a list of Xbox subscription service issues that the investigation found did not comply with UK government regulations. However, Microsoft did not wait long to act, and CMA confirmed that the company would voluntarily make changes to its services in light of these investigations.


RELATED: Xbox Just Had Its Highest Revenue Year Ever

Specifically, the list of issues primarily relates to information availability and membership management. Microsoft will now need to provide access to better informational content about its subscription services, as well as when and how to manage auto-renewal. CMA requested that Xbox Services provide improved up-front information on when exactly services auto-renew and clearly explain how auto-renewal can be turned off in the appropriate menu, which could be particularly useful if someone’s favorite games are being removed from Game Pass. , for example.

xbox game pass logo black background

Microsoft will now also need to contact users on a more regular basis, which may extend to the Microsoft Rewards service (currently UK-exclusive). Repeat users with long subscription contracts will, for example, now have the option to terminate their subscription with a pro-rated refund provided by default, with a similar support package provided to inactive users. Another request made by the CMA was that Microsoft notify users of future price increases for services well in advance, as well as the ability to immediately cancel automatic renewal, if the user so chooses.

CMA’s investigation may have been prompted by Microsoft’s success with Xbox and its subscription services. Xbox Game Pass recently hit 25 million subscribers, a significant number of whom are required to reside in the UK. According to Michael Grenfell, executive director of the application at the CMA, Microsoft was quick to accept the organization’s assessment and later praised its quick response.

With these potentially major changes to all Microsoft subscription services in the UK, the only question that remains is whether the company will extend these changes in content and user-friendly options to other territories as well. It’s not a stretch to imagine that would be the case, as both Xbox and Microsoft are on a friendly streak with Game Pass patches and updates arriving regularly lately.

MORE: Microsoft’s reputation is on the line with Activision Blizzard

Source: Govt. UK

Elden Ring Player Creates Ross Geller From Friends Using Character Creator

The Elden Ring player creates a character that resembles Ross Geller, one of the most iconic characters from the popular Friends TV series.

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CMA secures changes to Xbox subscription practices for Microsoft Xbox Live Gold and Game Pass subscriptions

Xbox subscriptions are set to change after concerns were raised about the service offered to online gamers.

Xbox Live Gold and Microsoft’s Game Pass allow gamers to access a library of games and play together online.

Memberships and subscription services for online games have been studied

Packages, offered as paid subscriptions, are often purchased on an auto-renewing basis, which means the subscription is automatically renewed at the end of each contractual period and customers are billed again unless they do not actively stop their subscription.

But after an investigation by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), in the sector of video games on online consoles, concerns have been raised about certain features of the Xbox subscription service and in particular whether it was clear to players who initially signed that their contract would automatically renew and take more of their money when it expired.

The ease with which it was possible to turn off the auto-renewal feature and whether people realized that they were still paying for online gaming services with Xbox that they no longer used were also examined. as part of the investigation by the Independent Government Department.

In 2019, the CMA launched a survey of online gaming subscriptions
In 2019, the CMA launched a survey of online gaming subscriptions

AMC says it has now reached an agreement with tech giant Microsoft that it will make improvements to its Xbox subscription services.

This will include providing better up-front information to Xbox customers to help them understand the terms of their subscription, including that the subscription they have purchased will automatically renew unless the customer turns that option off, when that renewal will take place, how much will it cost and how customers can receive a refund after an accidental renewal.

Microsoft, says the AMC, will also contact existing customers who have recurring 12-month contracts and give them the option of terminating their contract and requesting a prorated refund while customers with subscriptions who have not used the service or played online for a long time but still pay money to Microsoft, will also be reminded how to stop their payments and that if they continue not to use their subscriptions, the company will eventually stop taking money. ‘silver.

The company has also pledged to ensure its information about price increases is better – with clearer notifications to send to online Xbox users about future price increases, as well as information on how to turn off auto-renewal features if they don’t want to pay the higher price when the agreement they’re currently on ends.

Customers with Xbox subscriptions will now receive clearer information about their subscriptions
Customers with Xbox subscriptions will now receive clearer information about their subscriptions

Michael Grenfell, Executive Director of Enforcement at the CMA, said: “Players need to be provided with clear and timely information to make informed choices when signing up for auto-renewing memberships and subscriptions.

“We are therefore pleased that Microsoft has given the CMA these formal commitments to improve the fairness of their practices and protect consumers, and will offer refunds to certain customers.

“Other companies offering auto-renewing memberships and subscriptions should take note and review their practices to ensure they comply with consumer protection law.”

To learn more about the changes Click here.

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Good news for Xbox Game Pass fans waiting for future Xbox Series X downloads | Games | Entertainment

Blizzard has just announced that it is working on a new survival game in a new universe that will launch on PC and Xbox consoles.

That means it won’t be part of the Diablo, Warcraft, Starcraft, or Overwatch franchises that are already available to explore on PlayStation, Xbox, and PC platforms.

Instead, it will be a new experience and will be available on multiple platforms, although we don’t know if there will be any exclusivity deals.

This is also great news for Xbox Game Pass fans, as it seems likely that Activision Blizzard and all of its studios will soon become part of Microsoft.

A post from Phil Spencer explaining the deal revealed this key point: “At closing, we will be offering as many Activision Blizzard games as possible in Xbox Game Pass and PC Game Pass, both new titles and games from the incredible catalog of Activision Blizzard.

“We also announced today that Game Pass now has over 25 million subscribers. As always, we look forward to continuing to add more value and more great games to Game Pass.

“Activision Blizzard’s fantastic franchises will also accelerate our plans for Cloud Gaming, enabling more people in more places around the world to participate in the Xbox community using phones, tablets, laptops and computers. other devices you already own.

“Activision Blizzard games are enjoyed on a variety of platforms and we plan to continue supporting these communities in the future.”

This means that any new IP created by the Blizzard team could become an Xbox exclusive, unless an existing agreement already exists with other platforms.

As mentioned in the announcement, this new survival game will also be coming to PC, which means it could become a bundle for PC and Xbox Game Pass subscriptions.

There aren’t many gameplay details that will be offered, with Blizzard announcing the new project in the form of a job posting that reads:

“Blizzard embarks on our next quest. We’re embarking on a journey to an all-new universe, home to an all-new survival game for PC and console. A place full of heroes we’ve yet to meet, from stories to stories to tell and adventures to live in. A vast realm of possibilities, waiting to be explored.

“Every story needs a storyteller. And every world needs builders. What if it could be you?

“For thirty years, Blizzard has been creating universes for millions of players around the world. It requires a diverse team of developers willing to lend their voices, listen, and be heard. This is our mission.

“Do you like survival games? Do you want to join a collaborative team of experienced developers at the very beginning of a new project in a new world…and help write the next chapter in Blizzard history? »

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Xbox Game Pass vs. Ultimate: what’s the difference?

Xbox Game Pass is one of the best gaming deals. Plus: with Microsoft set to acquire Activision Blizzard, it could get even better in the next year or two. The service costs at least $10 per month, which certainly isn’t cheap. But you’ll get what you pay for, with hundreds of downloadable games, including early releases from Microsoft studios.

Before you subscribe to Xbox Game Pass (or cancel it forever), just know that it comes in three different flavors: Xbox Game Pass, PC Game Pass, and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. The three tiers have more similarities than differences, and deciding which one you want is pretty straightforward. You just have to ask yourself three questions:

  • Do I want to play on Xbox?
  • Do I want to play on a gaming PC?
  • Do I want to play on mobile devices and PCs without gaming and play games online?

Once you know the answers, choosing a level is simple. In this article, we’ll break down the differences and recommend different tiers for individual use cases.

Xbox Game Pass vs. PC Game Pass vs. Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

Before we dive into the specifics of each Xbox Game Pass subscription tier, please check out the handy table below for a high-level overview of what each offers:

Xbox Game Pass vs. PC Game Pass vs. Xbox Game Pass Ultimate
Xbox Game Pass PC game pass Xbox Game Pass Ultimate
Price $10/month $10/month $15/month
Games 400+ 400+ 400+
Platforms Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S computer PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, Android, iOS, web browser
delivery method To download To download Download, stream
Xbox Live Gold included? No N / A Yes

Xbox Game Pass for console

Xbox and Samsung

(Image credit: future)

To start, let’s talk about Xbox Game Pass (or Xbox Game Pass for console), arguably the most basic level of the service. This is Xbox Game Pass as Microsoft originally introduced it at E3 2017. You pay $10 a month, and in return you get access to a library of over 400 Xbox games. These range from first-party Microsoft fare, like Halo Infinite and Forza Horizon 5, to indie darlings, like Hollow Knight and Unpacking. You must download these games to an Xbox One, Xbox Series S, or Xbox Series X console before playing them.

There’s not much else to know here. If you choose to purchase any of the Game Pass a la carte titles, you will receive a 20% discount. These games usually don’t come with DLC, but you’ll get a 10% discount on all add-ons. As with any subscription service, games come and go from Xbox Game Pass frequently, so if you see a game you like, you’ll want to play it as soon as possible. (Except for games from Microsoft studios; those are here forever.)

Likewise, once your subscription runs out, you will lose access to the Game Pass library. However, if you purchase a pay-per-view game, your save files will be retained, so there is no risk of losing progress.

It’s also worth noting that to play games online, Game Pass console subscribers will also need a separate Xbox Live Gold subscription. This feature not only gives access to online games, but gives players a handful of free games to keep. For example, 49 titles were offered in 2021, including games such as Little Nightmares, Injustice: Gods Among Us, and Darksiders 3. Even if your Xbox Live Gold subscription expires, you can keep your Games with Gold titles. Granted, many of these titles can also be found in the Xbox Game Pass library. Xbox Live Gold is priced as follows: $10 per month, $25 for 3 months, and $60 for a full year. Generously, Xbox doesn’t require a Live Gold membership for a handful of free games like Fortnite, Roblox, and Rocket League. The full list of free non-Xbox Live Gold games can be found here. However, Xbox Live Gold is included with the more expensive Xbox Game Pass Ultimate tier.

PC game pass

Xbox Game Pass

(Image credit: Microsoft)

PC Game Pass is essentially the same thing as Xbox Game Pass for console, just on a different system. As the name suggests, PC Game Pass lets you download and play games on Windows 10 and Windows 11 computers. are not guaranteed to work on your PC. You will still need to meet the minimum requirements – CPU, GPU, HDD space, etc. But if you have a powerful machine, you’ll get access to over 400 PC games for $10 a month.

The selection is somewhat different than Xbox Game Pass for console, as the two libraries do not have exact parity. Most Microsoft products are still offered. You’ll also get access to some beloved Microsoft PC titles, such as Age of Empires IV. There are a lot of indies, from Boyfriend Dungeon to Sable. The third-party range is different, but not as different as you might expect – you can still play games like Octopath Traveler and the majority of the Yakuza series, for example.

The same discount rules apply – 20% off full games and 10% off DLCs. Just know that whatever game you buy, you’ll be buying it through the Microsoft Store rather than the Steam or Epic Games Store. This may limit multiplayer compatibility on some titles, so it’s worth doing some research beforehand.

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

ultimate xbox game pass

(Image credit: Xbox)

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate is where Microsoft offers all of the service’s best bells and whistles. Although it costs $15 a month instead of $10, Game Pass Ultimate is arguably worth the upsell if you want to play on as many platforms as possible. Not only that, it includes an Xbox Live Gold membership for online gaming and a select handful of titles to own entirely.

First and foremost, Xbox Game Pass Ultimate gives you full access to the Xbox Game Pass for Console and PC Game Pass libraries. This means that you can download and play games on both gaming PC and console. In most cases, save data is transferred between them.

This is where things get interesting. Besides letting you download games, Xbox Game Pass Ultimate also lets you stream games. Currently, Xbox Game Pass supports cloud gaming on Android, iOS, web browsers, and even Xbox consoles themselves. Whether you play downloaded or streamed games, your save data carries across all platforms.

In other words: you can download a game to your Xbox, switch to your gaming PC when your spouse wants TV, continue your session on your smartphone in bed, then sneak into a quick session on your work laptop. the next day.

Xbox Cloud Gaming has some caveats. The service is still technically in beta, so connectivity isn’t perfect. iOS functionality, in particular, doesn’t work very well, partly because Apple forces you to use a browser rather than allowing a dedicated app. Not all games are available to stream, and those that are aren’t usually optimized for small screens. Smartphones, in particular, may require additional hardware or convoluted setups, whether you plan to play with a controller or a mount, like the Razer Kishi.

Overall, though, Xbox Game Pass Ultimate feels like a glimpse into the future of gaming. You can play hundreds of games, on any platform you choose, and continue your progress with minimal frustration. The only question is whether you want to spend $15 a month for the privilege. But if you were already paying $10 a month for Xbox Live Gold to access online play, the extra $5 cost for Game Pass Ultimate might be a no brainer for some.

What Xbox Game Pass tier do I need to get?

Xbox Game Pass

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Do you remember those three questions you asked yourself earlier? If so, you should now have a pretty good idea of ​​which Xbox Game Pass tier to get:

  • Get Xbox Game Pass for console if you want to download games to Xbox console and don’t care to play some games online
  • Get PC Game Pass if you want to download games to a gaming PC
  • Get Xbox Game Pass Ultimate if you want to download games on both Xbox console and gaming PC and or if you want to stream games on Android, iOS, web browsers and Xbox consoles. Also consider Ultimate if you plan to play your games online

It’s also worth noting that there’s one circumstance in which you shouldn’t subscribe to Xbox Game Pass, and that’s if you’d rather own games. Xbox Game Pass has a ton of games, but they come and go regularly, and sooner or later a game you love will leave the service while you’re at it. It’s a frustrating experience and one you’ll never encounter if you just buy games one at a time.

Buying games directly can also be cheaper. At $15 per month, a year of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate will set you back $180. That’s about three big-budget games, or somewhere between nine and 20 indie games, not to mention the mid-budget games you can often find on sale. It’s worth looking at your gaming habits and doing a bit of math before investing in any Game Pass tier.

Otherwise, Xbox Game Pass is an impressive service that will likely get even better in the next year or two. Granted, it can also get more expensive – no subscription service stays the same price forever. If this happens, we recommend running the calculation again and determining if you play enough games each month to justify the bonus.

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Do you need Xbox Live to play Halo Infinite?

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Here’s the breakdown on whether or not players need Xbox Live to play Halo Infinite online. / Image courtesy of 343 Industries

Do you need Xbox Live to play Halo Infinite?

Halo Infinite has had one of the most unorthodox versions of the game in quite some time. Not only did its multiplayer mode come out before its campaign, some features are free for everyone while others are not. As such, here’s the breakdown on whether or not players need Xbox Live to play Halo Infinite online.

Halo Infinite notoriously originally had its free-for-all multiplayer release on Xbox and PC on November 15, 2021 to the surprise of the gaming world.

Since multiplayer is free, just like titles such as Fortnite and PUBG: Battlegrounds, Halo Infinite multiplayer is available to everyone, whether or not they have an active Xbox Live or Xbox Game Pass membership.

Meanwhile, the Halo Infinite campaign has been released with the full official release of the game on December 8, 2021 for $59.99 USD.

As of now, there’s no co-op mode left for the campaign, but we’d assume that once it’s released, console players will need to have Xbox Live or Xbox Game Pass in order to play it online.

For more on Halo Infinite, be sure to check out our coverage of 343 Industries reportedly implementing a credit earning system in the upcoming Season 2 Battle Pass.

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What is the best way to play Banjo-Kazooie?

The best way to play Banjo-Kazooie

This week, Rare’s animal duo adventure returns to Nintendo hardware for the first time since its launch in 1998. Between retro and modern platforms, there are currently four ways to play Banjo-Kazooie: the original Nintendo 64 version, the Xbox Live Arcade version, Rare replay, and finally, the Nintendo Switch Online expansion pack. Although each of the re-releases has its advantages, the Xbox Live Arcade version of Banjo-Kazooie is arguably the definitive way to play through the first bear and bird adventure, though you really can’t go wrong with any of them. Between difficulty and technicality, decide which version of Banjo-Kazooie you should play depends on player preference (and of course availability).

The Xbox Upgrade

Banjo-Kazooie’s The 2008 Xbox Live Arcade re-release isn’t entirely perfect, but gameplay-wise it’s probably the best way to experience the first title in the series. With reworked high-definition graphics, widescreen, smooth frame rate, full-motion camera, and the removal of the Note Score feature, Banjo-Kazooie never looked and played as well as the Xbox version. For those who have the ability to play any version of Banjo-Kazooie and its sequels, there’s no reason not to pick up the Xbox iteration.

The port’s only flaw appears in the game’s cutscene presentation. Due to the Nintendo 64 release having some technical issues, Banjo-Kazooie’s 1998’s cutscenes were designed around its abrupt downturns. Because of this, the Xbox Live Arcade version of the game doesn’t actually have synchronized visuals and audio during cutscenes. Considering that the bear and the bird do not speak full sentences aloud, the issues do not affect the base player experience but are certainly noticeable during transitions and specific musical moments – the removal of Tooty’s opening, in particular, seems the most fumbled.

For those looking for the best way to play the entire series, however, any Xbox console capable of playing Banjo-Kazooie and its two main follow-ups will be the definitive way to complete Rare’s three collectathons – and it’s not just because they’re readily available on all modern Xbox platforms. The Xbox Live Arcade versions of the first two games and Banjo Kazooie: nuts and bolts actually contain exclusive content for players with an Xbox Live account who keep their save data on one system.

When developing the original Nintendo 64 games, Rareware wanted to use a feature called “Stop ‘N’ Swop” to connect Banjo-Kazooie and its sequel, Banjo Tooie. Had it not been for hardware limitations that Rareware was unaware of, this gameplay mechanic would have required players to swap game cartridges during certain dialogues to unlock features in each game. For Xbox versions Live Arcade Banjo-Kazooie and Banjo Tooie, the feature has been reimplemented in games through the Xbox 360 save capabilities. There are a handful of new features such as Xbox Live and Dragon-Kazooie player avatars that users can obtain by completing all games in order on Xbox.

It should also be noted that Banjo-Kazooie has a few benefits for gamers using Microsoft’s cloud services and the latest Xbox Series consoles. The Xbox Live Arcade title can be played on the go via Xbox Cloud Gaming and console streaming. Additionally, the game has an Xbox Series X-exclusive 4K resolution upgrade — the resolution bump obviously isn’t a game-changer, but it definitely adds more sharpness for gamers on a high-quality TV.

The bang for your buck

Rare Replay Banjo-Kazooie

So what about Rare replay then? If you plan to play Banjo-Kazooie on Xbox One or Xbox Series X/S, you have no reason not to get a month of Game Pass or a copy of Rare replay– especially considering the digital and retail prices of the game. Rare replay contains a separate download for the Xbox Live Arcade version of Banjo-Kazooie. Rare replay uses an in-game menu that directs you to the digital version as the games have separate achievement lists. While purchasing Rare replay, not only will you get Banjo-Kazooie, but you will also have access to 29 other rare games including Banjo Tooie and Banjo Kazooie: nuts and bolts.

Flourishes and Flaws — Nintendo Switch online and N64

Nintendo Switch Banjo-Kazooie Online Expansion Pack

With the release of this week’s Nintendo Switch Online Expansion Pack Banjo-Kazooie, the original Nintendo and Rareware logos that were replaced in the Xbox Live Arcade re-release are back with a perfectly timed opening music number. Graphically, the Xbox version will obviously steal the show as Nintendo’s servers use a version 64 ROM file. The Switch Online expansion pack version of Banjo-Kazooie is back to the game’s original 4:3 aspect ratio and only uses emulation upscaling techniques to clean up textures. The game still looks great, but again, it’s definitely far from having the best graphics. In terms of controller layout, the Switch and Xbox versions of Banjo-Kazooie thankfully share the same control scheme – they are literally identical.

The only major advantage of the Nintendo Switch version of the game is the ability to use multiple save states. Thanks to Switch Online, players now have the ability to take advantage of four separate save state slots that can be loaded at any time. If players choose to use the feature, they will definitely have a simpler version of Banjo-Kazooie on their hands – which is incredibly ironic, given that Switch gamers will have to live with a challenge not present in the Xbox versions: the infamous “Note Score” feature.

In the original Nintendo 64 version of Banjo-Kazooie, a technical limitation forced the developers to introduce an accidental difficulty curve. If you die during a level without having collected all the notes, Banjo-Kazooie forces the player to pick up each musical item one more time to finish rounding up their score. This technical limitation was “fixed” when the game was ported to Xbox Live Arcade, meaning the player never has to worry about losing lives and wasting an extra half hour collecting the same ones. notes he’s already taken just to take a few more.

That being said, players looking for an easier or more difficult version of Banjo-Kazooie can’t go wrong picking the Nintendo Switch version – it’s by far the most malleable in terms of creating artificial difficulty. The only real downside to playing the Nintendo Switch version is that the expansion pack requires an internet connection to start and the camera functionality isn’t perfect. As expected with a direct port of an N64 game, Banjo-Kazooie’s The 1998 camera does not have full 360 degree movement. The player is glued to the artificial camera system that other platforms like Super Mario 64 pioneer.

Moreover (and from my personal experience), the The Nintendo Switch release still suffers from the lag that was present in the original Nintendo 64 release. faced with many frame rate drops and constant slowdown. Lag issues don’t destroy the experience, but they’re terribly noticeable in certain areas of the game.

As stated earlier, save states are the best addition to this release. Rusty Bucket Bay’s engine room can finally kick some ass!

Again, you really can’t go wrong with any of these.

Ultimately, each version of Banjo-Kazooie runs and plays very well. Whether you’re playing the pixelated, technically limited original Nintendo 64 or the enhanced visual extravaganza of the Xbox Series X 4K, the collectathon is still the same masterpiece. If you already own the Nintendo Switch Online expansion pack, there’s no reason not to download the latest update and start playing. Banjo-Kazooie today. For those who really want the best viewing experience, play it on Xbox. If you want to play through the entire main series, Rare replay got you covered.

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Xbox Game Pass is getting a Taiko no Tatsujin game next week

If you’re an Xbox gamer, you might not be familiar with Bandai Namco’s Taiko no Tatsujin series. Out of shame.

This series of drum-based rhythm games is much bigger in the east than it is here in the west, although a PS4 and Switch release in recent years has seen its popularity surge. . Arcade machines also exist for the game, with lovable drum-like characters, Don and Katsu, who are quite the icons. And finally, Xbox players can get in on the action starting January 27, when Taiko no Tatsujin: The Drum Master releases on Xbox Game Pass.

If you’re unfamiliar with the franchise, Taiko no Tatsujin is a rhythm game where notes take one of two forms: a red “Don” note or a blue “Katsu” note. Like all rhythm games, your goal is to hit every note in time with the beat. The more specific you are, the better your score will be.


Taiko no Tatsujin: The Drum Master features over 70 music tracks, including a mix of classic tracks and popular songs from other Bandai Namco franchises. There’s a single-player mode where you can work on each track, or you can complete ranked matches to finish for a spot on a global leaderboard. There are also various local multiplayer modes, where you can challenge your friends and family.

Although available to Xbox Game Pass members as part of their subscription, Taiko no Tatsujin: The Drum Master will also be available for purchase on Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S and PC. It comes out on January 27. If you like fun and colorful music games, don’t miss it.

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These 10+ games are coming to Xbox next week (January 24-28)

After this month’s madness for Xbox Game Pass (and beyond), it looks like things are finally calming down next week. We only have a handful of new releases on Xbox, and only one could be described as a Major Release – Taiko No Tatsujin: Drum Master, which is also launching with Game Pass!

Here’s what’s on the way:

New Xbox Releases (January 24-28)

Optimized for Xbox Series X|S

  • Cannibal kitchen (January 25): “Serving is better than being served in this kitchen co-op! Chop vegetables, fruits and tourists and serve up your divine delights in an arcade style with up to 4 chefs!”
  • summer madness (January 26):”Summertime Madness is a single player first person puzzle game. The player, in the role of a painter who has made a pact with the devil, must find his way back to the real world after being tricked and trapped in one of his canvases.”
  • SWAN: Unexplored Chernobyl (January 26): “SWAN: Chernobyl Unexplored is a sci-fi FPS horror and puzzle game, set a few months after the Chernobyl nuclear power plant disaster.”
  • Taiko No Tatsujin: Drum Master (January 27): “Beat high scores playing with Don and Ka. Choose from over 70 songs and play with friends in local multiplayer and online ranked matches. Turn on your drumming spirit!
  • Active Neurons – Puzzle Game (January 28): “Active Neurons is a game that trains the player in spatial logical thinking. By controlling the power of thought, you need to charge neurons.”

Xbox One

  • Cannibal kitchen (January 25): “Serving is better than being served in this kitchen co-op! Chop vegetables, fruits and tourists and serve up your divine delights in an arcade style with up to 4 chefs!”
  • Reverie Knight Tactics (January 25): “A turn-based tactical RPG with strategic battles in isometric grids where every decision you make can alter the story and how you set up characters.”
  • cake invaders (January 26): “Shoot to protect humanity’s precious candy from swarms of hungry aliens!” Are you up for the challenge of protecting precious desserts from waves of alien attacks?
  • COGEN: Rewind Sword (January 26): “Rewind, rethink, redo. COGEN is a whole new type of 2D action game where there is no time for death. Any hit you take is a death sentence in this 2D action game to side scroll.”
  • Gav-Gav Odyssey (January 26): “Gav-Gav Odyssey is another way to enjoy gaming’s past! This game merges the best elements of Golden Age gaming: platforming, scrolling, and puzzles.”
  • summer madness (January 26):”Summertime Madness is a single player first person puzzle game. The player, in the role of a painter who has made a pact with the devil, must find his way back to the real world after being tricked and trapped in one of his canvases.”
  • SWAN: Unexplored Chernobyl (January 26): “SWAN: Chernobyl Unexplored is a sci-fi FPS horror and puzzle game, set a few months after the Chernobyl nuclear power plant disaster.”
  • Gunvolt Chronicles: Luminous Avenger iX 2 (January 27): “Step into the new pinnacle of 2D action! With his new spinning blade weapon, the Razor Wheel, Copen rips through any enemy that gets in his way as he traverses a massive tower.”
  • Taiko No Tatsujin: Drum Master (January 27): “Beat high scores playing with Don and Ka. Choose from over 70 songs and play with friends in local multiplayer and online ranked matches. Turn on your drumming spirit!
  • vagabond (January 27): “Discover priceless treasure in a fantasy world full of dangers in this truly challenging pixel-art rogue adventure with RPG elements. Play solo or join up with up to 3 local or online friends!”
  • Calturin (January 28): “Calturin is a Bullet Hell Boss Rush game where you are resurrected by a necromancer who now holds you in his power. You must traverse the Gauntlet of Portals to unknown lands and face mortal beings.”
  • Super onion boy (January 28):A Classic 2D action adventure game in retro pixel art style. Your mission is to rescue your friends who have been captured by a terrible monster with psychic powers.”

Xbox Game Pass titles

These 10+ games are coming to Xbox next week (January 24-28) 2

Is there anything you particularly expect from this list? Let us know in the comments below.

Please note that some external links on this page are affiliate links, which means that if you click on them and make a purchase, we may receive a small percentage of the sale. Please read our FTC disclosure for more information.

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IO Interactive promises fixes are coming for Hitman 3 PC VR, Elusive Target Arcade, and Xbox crashes

Hitman 3 Year Two launched on all platforms yesterday, marking the start of the game’s second year of support and new content from developer IO Interactive. However, it was a rocky launch with bugs and performance issues noticed by many players.

IO Interactive explained today that it is aware of the issues affecting Hitman 3 that players have discovered since yesterday’s update. He listed the most egregious in a post on Twitter and promised to work on a fix to be released as soon as possible.

A performance patch is already available for Steam and the Epic Game Store that should improve the Hitman 3 experience on VR headsets. Windows PC users who grabbed the game on Game Pass will have to wait a bit longer as there is no release date for their patch yet.

As of this writing, there is still an issue in Hitman Trilogy that causes PC players to crash on desktop computers. On all platforms, however, Elusive Target Arcade appears to be completely broken. This is the first new game mode for Hitman 3 Year Two, and it’s proving quite frustrating for fans.

Elusive Target Arcade is a unique game mode that kicks players out of a mission for 12 hours if they fail. However, the game seems to randomly decide when a player has failed a mission, sometimes in the middle of those missions. Some reports suggest that the bug also affects escalations, although we were unable to confirm this.

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Xbox confirms it will “keep Call of Duty on PlayStation”

(Pocket-lint) – Microsoft recently revealed that it is acquiring Activision Blizzard King for $70 billion, meaning it will own some of the most popular game franchises. The acquisition, however, raises questions, such as whether PlayStation users will lose access to these franchises, namely Call of Duty.

Well, the Xbox manager just provided an answer.

In a tweet, Microsoft Gaming CEO and Xbox leader Phil Spencer suggested that Microsoft intends to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation while noting that Sony is important to the gaming industry.

“I’ve had some good calls this week with Sony executives,” Spencer tweeted on January 20, 2022. “I have confirmed our intention to honor all existing agreements upon the acquisition of Activision Blizzard and our desire to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation. Sony is an important part of our industry and we value our relationship.”

Millions of gamers around the world are probably thrilled to learn that they won’t have to give up their console of choice to continue playing Call of Duty. One has to wonder if, by taking this position, Microsoft is trying to avoid any potential issues with regulators. After all, if he were to make Call of Duty an Xbox exclusive, it would essentially limit consumer choice.

Pocket-lint should note, however, that Spencer seems specific in his language, only admitting that Xbox will honor existing deals and never mentioning future ones or anything longer term. Still, taken at close range, it’s clear that Xbox can read the play and is ready to partner with Sony to keep everyone happy right now.

Spencer has been conducting interviews about the acquisition all week, even going so far as to hint that Xbox might be reviving the old Activision Blizzard IP, like Skylanders. Microsoft also said it plans to include many Activision games with Xbox Game Pass, a subscription service that gives Xbox owners access to more than 300 games to download and play.

Written by Maggie Tillman.

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Great Games with Gold download skips Xbox Game Pass subscribers | Games | Entertainment

Starting today, Xbox Live Gold subscribers – those with access to Games with Gold – can download three new titles for a limited time, but not everyone on Xbox Game Pass will need to participate.

As part of its Free Play Days initiative, Microsoft will allow full versions of Yakuza 3 Remastered, Yakuza 4 Remastered, and Yakuza 5 Remastered to be downloaded and played.

So for anyone who has never played the famous Sega franchise and wanted to check it out, this week is the perfect time to do so.

As mentioned above, all three games are free to download and play if you have an Xbox Live Gold membership.

To download them on console, users can click on the Subscriptions tab in the Xbox Store and enter the Gold member area to locate the Free Play Days collection.

These games are available on Xbox One and Xbox Series X, though they don’t feature next-gen optimization options.

They will remain available until approximately 8:00 GMT on Monday, January 24, giving players plenty of time to experience each title.

It’s a great deal for anyone with basic access to Xbox Live Gold, but not so wonderful if you have Xbox Game Pass.

Microsoft is offering free play days to both groups of subscribers, and while January is already a brilliant month for those with Xbox Game Pass, there can still be a few surprises for everyone.

The only problem is that this week’s Free Play Days games are already available on Xbox Game Pass.

The remastered collection of Yakuza games can be played on XGP right now, and includes a number of other titles from the series as well.

So Microsoft hasn’t added anything new for Xbox Game Pass users, which means you’ll have to skip Free Play Days for now.

Descriptions of each Yakuza game can be found below:

Yakuza 3 Remastered

With a heart at peace, Kazuma Kiryu gives up his life as a yakuza to settle down in the management of an orphanage on the windy and idyllic coast of Okinawa. But when the land he is on becomes a dispute between politicians, local gangs, and the Tojo clan, Kiryu’s past surfaces and he will have to choose a side.

Yakuza 4 Remastered

In the absence of the Dragon of Dojima, Kamurocho becomes a kingless jungle, and a power struggle has been brewing behind the scenes ever since an infamous 1984 hit work comes to the surface. Witness events through the eyes of Shun Akiyama, a loan shark known as the “Lifeline of Kamurocho”, Taiga Saejima, who must break out of prison to confront his past, Masayoshi Tanimura, a cop on the wrong side of the law, and Kazuma Kiryu, who finds himself embroiled in the events that shaped his current life.

Yakuza 5 Remastered

The Omi Alliance is on the brink of a war of succession, and to prevent it, the sixth president of the Tojo clan, Daigo Dojima, seeks to unify the yakuza of all Japan. Echoes of this underground power struggle reach five playable characters: Kazuma Kiryu, who lays low in Fukuoka as a taxi driver, Taiga Saejima, who returns to prison to finish what he started, Shun Akiyama, who lends money to a client more than meets the eye, Haruka Sawamura, who dreams of becoming an idol, and Tatsuo Shinada, a disgraced baseball star who finds himself in over his head. Five characters, five cities and five dreams converge in an explosive conclusion.

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Hitman 3 Version 3.100 Patch Notes Launch Year 2 Content, Virtual Reality, and the Elusive Target Arcade

A big patch for Hitman 3 kicked off the launch of its Year 2 content. Check out everything that happened in Version 3.100!

It’s a big day for IO Interactive and Hitman fans. After revealing exactly what’s in store for Hitman 3 and the Hitman Trilogy this year, IO Interactive has finally released the Hitman 3 version 3.100 update. It includes the launch of Year 2 content with PC VR and Elusive Target Arcade, but many other fantastic features and modifications are included. You’ll want to take a look at the patch notes to see everything coming to the game today.

Hitman 3 Version 3.100 Patch Notes

Hitman 3 Version 3.100 marks the launch of the game's first Year 2 content, including PC VR and Elusive Target Arcade.
Hitman 3 Version 3.100 marks the launch of the game’s first Year 2 content, including PC VR and Elusive Target Arcade.

IO Interactive released Hitman 3 Version 3.100 with patch notes to accompany it on January 20, 2022. This is one of the first big steps in the recently revealed Hitman 3 Year 2 content, with the inclusion of new modes such as VR play for PC players and the Elusive Target Arcade on all platforms. Hitman 3 is also launching on To smoke today and the Hitman Trilogy set is available on all platforms. Take a look at all the additions, changes, and details in the patch notes below:

HITMAN 3 – New Year 2 Patch Content

Elusive Target Arcade

  • Elusive Target Arcade is an all-new game mode that takes the Elusive Target concept to the next level, mixes up the formula, and introduces new challenges and unlockable rewards – all while keeping the essence of what makes Elusive Targets exciting and interesting. to play.
  • On January 20, our launch bundle of 3 Arcade Contracts will be added to HITMAN 3, one for each game in the trilogy. During the Arcade Contracts Launch Bundle, you will be able to revisit 11 different ETs across 10 locations. All three contracts will be permanently available through the Arcade, whether you succeed or not. If you successfully complete all missions for a given arcade contract, you will be able to “reset” the contract and play immediately from the beginning. Failure at any time results in a 12 hour lockout. Read more about Elusive Target Arcade in our Year 2 Reveal blog post.
  • Elusive Target Arcade will also bring new rewards to the table and the first available is the Krugermeier 2-2 Dark. Complete one of the Arcade Contracts in the Launch Bundle to add it to your inventory.


  • HITMAN VR is coming to HITMAN 3 on PC and all supported PC platforms: Epic Games Store, Steam and Windows PC (Microsoft Store). Plus, we support the entire World of Assassination trilogy. If you can access HITMAN 1 and HITMAN 2 in HITMAN 3 on your PC, you can play everything in VR. Read more about it in our Year 2 reveal blog.
  • For details on supported hardware and minimum specs, see our PC VR Player Support Page.

HITMAN 3 on Steam

  • At 7:00 PM CET on January 20, we’ll be manually pushing the buttons to launch HITMAN 3 Standard Edition, HITMAN 3 Deluxe Edition, and HITMAN Trilogy on the Steam Store. This will allow us to coordinate the release at a time that aligns with IOI in Copenhagen and Valve in Seattle. There won’t be a “coming soon” page until this time, so we’ll go from 0 to 100 once those buttons are pressed. The expected download size for HITMAN 3 is 65 GB.
  • We publish with support for Steam Achievements and Trading Cards. Additionally, we will include the Trinity Pack (the HITMAN 3 pre-order bonus) for free with all HITMAN 3 editions mentioned above for the first 30 days.
  • If you have previously played HITMAN 2 on Steam, the slots you can access in this game will automatically be converted into an “Access Pass” for HITMAN 3. These will be applied to your account and the slots should be available and ready to play from the first launch of the game. Additionally, you will be able to carry over progress from HITMAN 2 on Steam to HITMAN 3, but this process is not automatic. More details on the progress report are on our Progress Report Player Support Page.

HITMAN Trilogy

  • HITMAN Trilogy brings together the World of Assassination trilogy in a single package to allow new players to enter the world of Agent 47. HITMAN Trilogy will be available digitally from 2:00 p.m. CET on January 20 on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, Epic Games Store, Steam (7:00 p.m. CET), Xbox Game Pass, PC Game Pass and Game Pass Ultimate. More details about our HITMAN Trilogy Player Support Page.
  • HITMAN Trilogy is available digitally on January 20 on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, Epic Games Store, Steam, Xbox Game Pass, PC Game Pass and Game Pass Ultimate.

HITMAN 3 FIXED ISSUES (Year 2 Update: 3.100)


  • We fixed an issue where audio could suddenly cut out or go silent during gameplay. This issue was particularly prominent on PlayStation 5.

Xbox access

  • We fixed an issue where some Xbox players could intermittently lose access to content. After investigation, we identified that players who owned a lot of different Hitman content on the same console were most likely to be affected.

Improved stability

  • We’ve made changes to the back-end to ensure a smoother online experience and reduce the number of “disconnect” issues players are experiencing.

Epic Achievements

  • We added support for epic achievements and avatars. More details can be found on the Epic Games Blog.

Support for Windows computers

  • In addition to Epic Games Store and Steam, HITMAN 3 and HITMAN Trilogy are now available on Windows PC (Microsoft). Players on this platform (including PC Game Pass players) will have access to their existing HITMAN 3 progress that was earned by playing HITMAN 3 on any Xbox console. This progress will also sync between Xbox consoles and Windows PC (Microsoft) versions of the game. Additionally, any Contracts created on this PC platform will be shared with Xbox console players and vice versa. These features are possible because Xbox Live is the central service that brings the two platforms together.

Shoulder Swap Controller

  • We have implemented a permanent fix for the “Shoulder Swap” option, so that it is now available when playing offline with a controller.

Target Down Dialog

  • We’ve implemented richer NPC dialogue that triggers when certain NPCs discover that a target or VIP has been pacified, eliminated, or otherwise harmed. They will refer to it by name in several ways, such as when reporting their knowledge to a guard.

Reduction of lens flare

  • We fixed a handful of issues that could result in excessively strong lens flare when certain light sources encountered reflective surfaces.

2 Easy 2 Silent

  • We’ve changed the unlock conditions for the “Silent Assassin” trophy so that it unlocks more consistently based on requirements.

Challenge display

  • We fixed an issue that could cause the menu UI to incorrectly display the mission for which a challenge could be completed. Now the game will be more accurate when displaying the best suited mission to complete a given challenge.

Smash of glass

  • We fixed an issue where several panes were missing SFX when broken.

HUD Flash

  • We fixed an issue where certain HUD icons and messages would flash repeatedly during gameplay, depending on specific player actions.

We use it to fix

  • We fixed an issue where the Versatile Assassin challenge on “The Author” (H1 Patient Zero campaign mission) was not unlocking, despite having all the requirements. To ensure challenges are completed and tracked accurately, we recommend players complete all objectives and complete the mission.

Dubai: Deadly Elevator

  • We fixed an issue where NPCs attacked and thrown into an elevator shaft in Dubai were pacified rather than killed. Now only death awaits.

Dartmoor: exterior, interior

  • We fixed an issue where 47 could see through a specific wall from outside Dartmoor Manor.

Chongqing: You died for me

  • We have made changes to several areas of Chongqing, so that all NPCs that are outside the playable area are classified as “killed” and bodies are “hidden”.

Chongqing: table, no table

  • We changed the properties of an “invisible table” in the Gluttony Gobble escalation. Basically, it’s gone.

Mendoza: No soup for you

  • We fixed an issue where Agent 47 could not move around without being spotted, when starting as the Asado leader.

Mendoza: Prompts too persistent

  • We removed a “prompt” icon near one of the persistent shortcuts in Mendoza.

Mendoza: rich harvest

  • We’ve made the Rich Harvest trophy/achievement slightly easier to unlock by not requiring the completion of a “hidden” mission story on Mendoza. This should clear up the confusion among players who seemed to have completed the requirements but did not receive the trophy/achievement.

Mendoza: Dialog of Diana

  • We fixed an issue that could prevent Diana’s dialogue from triggering at the start of the Mendoza campaign mission.

Bangkok: unusual identity

  • We fixed several issues where NPC names and pictures did not match the actual NPC in Bangkok.

Credit where it’s due, 3,100

  • We’ve updated in-game credits where necessary to reflect work done since the last patch, including new team members who have joined.

This covers the entire Hitman 3 Version 3.100 patch. With the launch of Year 2 content, are you diving back into it? Will you be jumping on Steam now that it’s here? Let us know in the Shacknews Chatty section below!

News editor-in-chief

TJ Denzer is a gamer and writer with a lifelong passion for games. He found his way to Shacknews’ roster in late 2019 and has been working his way to senior news editor ever since. In between news coverage, he also helps out with livestreaming projects like Indie-licious focused on indie gaming, Shacknews Stimulus Games and Shacknews Dump. You can reach him at [email protected] and also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

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Xbox Live Gold and Game Pass Ultimate members can play three Yakuza games for free this weekend

Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate members can play Yakuza 3 Remastered, Yakuza 4 Remastered, and Yakuza 5 Remastered free until Sunday.

If you end up loving what you play, you can buy the standard editions of each game 50% off at $10 apiece. You will also keep your Gamerscore and Achievements during the event once you make a purchase.

In Yakuza 3 Remastered, Kazuma Kiryu has left his yakuza life behind to settle into running an orphanage on the coast of Okinawa. Unfortunately, issues between politicians, local gangs, and the Tojo Clan will force him to choose a side.

Yakuza 4 Remastered is set in Kamurocho, and events unfold through the eyes of loan shark Shun Akiyama. The game also stars Taiga Saejima, who will have to break out of prison to confront his past, Masayoshi Tanimura, a cop on the wrong side of the law, and Kazuma Kiryu returns to find himself embroiled in the events that have shaped his current life. . .

And in Yakuza 5, the Omi Alliance is on the brink of a succession war, and to prevent it, Daigo Dojima of the Tojo Clan seeks to unify yakuza from all over Japan. The game features five playable characters: Kazuma Kiryu, currently a taxi driver in Fukuoka, Taiga Saejima, who returned to prison to finish what he started, Shun Akiyamal who lends money to a rather suspicious customer, Haruka Sawamura , who dreams of becoming an idol and disgraced baseball star Tatsuo Shinada who is in over his head. These stories take place in five different cities, with all the stories eventually converging.

You have until January 23 at 11:59 p.m. PT / January 24 at 2:59 a.m. / 7:59 a.m. UK to play games for nada with your subscription.

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Bandai Namco Announces First-Ever Xbox and PC Game Taiko no Tatsujin, Coming in One Week

Why is this important: Hidden in Microsoft’s announcement of upcoming Game Pass games this week was a Taiko no Tatsujin game that publisher Bandai Namco had yet to announce. It will be available on the service when it releases on January 27 and is the first game in the long-running series to come to Microsoft platforms.

Since the original arcade release in 2001, Bandai Namco’s series of drum rhythm games Taiko has spawned dozens of entries on various PlayStation, Nintendo and mobile platforms. Although cute characters WadaDon and twin brother WadaKatsu never made their Xbox or PC debut, until now.

The only official information about Taiko no Tatsujin: The Drum Master comes from Microsoft’s latest Game Pass broadcast list, the Bandai Namco Asia website, and one Tweeter from Bandai Namco Europe. This new game will have around 70 songs, two-player local multiplayer, and online leaderboards.

So far, Bandai Namco hasn’t said anything about the release of the Taiko Drum Controller for Xbox. However, those compatible with the 2018 PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch versions are compatible with PC (mainly for browser games so far).

Even though the game is out in a week, the store pages haven’t appeared on Bandai Namco’s website, Steam (where the company sold all of its PC games), or the Microsoft Store.

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Xbox Live seems to be down for some users

Update: Xbox Support has issued a statement on the issue, which now appears to be resolved. Xbox Live functionality should work normally.

Xbox’s servers seem to be having some issues right now, with user reports on platforms like Twitter saying they’re having issues while using certain apps. Currently, the outage appears to be affecting both games and some apps, like the Microsoft Store, although not all users appear to be affected.

On Twitter, a simple search for “Xbox” brings up dozens of users claiming to be having issues with the service, although the issue has yet to be acknowledged by the Xbox Support account. As of this writing, Xbox’s website shows green in all areas for services, so it’s possible the issues haven’t been noticed yet.


RELATED: Xbox Acquires Activision Blizzard, Will Own Call of Duty, Warcraft & More

It looks like the issue only started recently, as users haven’t reported any major issues for a very long time. Keeping that in mind, Xbox will likely address the issue shortly, so there might be some acknowledgment of the issue to come. In the meantime, users will have to be patient. Refreshing their internet connections can also help, as not everyone seems to be experiencing the issue.

Little information is available at this time, but this article will be updated as the situation evolves. Outages like this are always a little disappointing, but they tend to be resolved fairly quickly unless something nefarious happens. That doesn’t appear to be the case here, as it appears to be a standard failure.

Crash issues aren’t that common, in the grand scheme of things. While this holiday season has gone relatively well, there are usually blackouts around events like Christmas, as new players flood each service looking to try out new consoles and games. For example, Nintendo warned of possible outages over Christmas last year, which ended up affecting some users.

On the other hand, there have been notoriously serious outages with services in the past. Most notable was a PlayStation Network outage that interrupted service for a month, which had a big impact on perceptions of PlayStation at the time. Nothing quite so extreme has happened since, with this particular event marking a massive stain on the company’s reputation. There’s also the standard fare of hackers launching DDoS attacks against online services, although there have also been fewer in recent years.

MORE: Xbox Game Pass leak reveals drop dates for many games

What Pokemon Legends: Arceus’ Lack Of Duplicate Versions Could Mean For The Franchise

Pokemon Legends: Arceus is the only version of the game releasing later this month, which may imply a few things about the future of the franchise.

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New Xbox Game Pass Series X Downloads Replacing THESE Indie Favorites | Games | Entertainment

While Xbox Game Pass is about to be updated with stellar new titles, it’s also losing a few. The good news for AAA fans is that Rainbow Six Extraction and Hitman 3, as part of the Trilogy Pack, will arrive today, with Xbox Series X enhancements.

Both of these titles will be part of a growing list of Xbox Game Pass games for fans to enjoy in January, but fans won’t have everything their way.

Microsoft has also confirmed that it will remove a collection of smaller Pass-agnostic favorites that have been available for some time.

And for anyone disappointed, they can still buy the full game now and use their 20% Game Pass discount.

Otherwise, the following games will leave Game Pass on January 31, 2022:

  • Cyber ​​Shadow (cloud, console, and PC)
  • Nowhere Prophet (cloud, console and PC)
  • Prison Architect (PC)
  • Xeno Crisis (cloud, console and PC)

As noted above, all four games are available through Cloud, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and PC, meaning all subscribers will lose them at the end of the month.

Cyber ​​Shadow has been available for almost a year on Xbox Game Pass and has the following game description:

In Cyber ​​Shadow, you will ascend from the depths of a desolate world where mysterious synthetic lifeforms have taken over. As Shadow, you must unlock the secrets of his clan’s ancient powers and defeat nefarious foes before it’s too late. Dash, slice and jump through masterfully crafted levels filled with vigorous close combat and defeat over a dozen challenging bosses to save your clan and unlock Ninjutsu skills and abilities.

Nowhere Prophet joined Game Pass in 2020 as a day one launch, providing a deck-building experience:

Nowhere Prophet sees you traversing a post-apocalyptic wasteland on the distant planet Soma, where bandits and lunatics are constantly fighting for the last crumbs. At the end of this world is the mysterious Crypt, which promises safety and prosperity for you and your group of followers – each of which is a companion that you carry with you like a map, being able to be injured or killed along the way. Can you keep your followers safe along this dangerous path?

Prison Architect is one of the best-known games on the list, offering a unique simulation building experience described as follows:

“Are you going to build and run a prison to create social order where it failed in their past, meeting all their needs by providing rehabilitation and peaceful coexistence? Or will you ignore human rights, impose intentional harshness and suppress any notion of well-being and freedom? The choice is always yours, and in Prison Architect you will be able to explore and deal with the consequences of your decisions.

Xeno Crisis has the smallest install size and some of the most retro gameplay and graphics, “Xeno Crisis is an arena shooter where up to two players take control of battle-hardened marines as they embark on a mission to face an alien threat! Run and fight your way through thousands of adversaries, searching for survivors and ultimately facing the source of the outpost’s disappearance.

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Advanced game install features on the Xbox app for PC are now enabled by default

Microsoft is rolling out a new version of the Xbox app for Windows 10 and 11, enabling advanced install features that rolled out a few months ago by default. The features were already available to try out before, but now they’ll be enabled by default so you can install games to your favorite folder without having to jump through any hoops.

Being able to choose where games are installed and see their files is important, as it also allows you to potentially modify game files. Mods are important to many in the PC gaming community, so it’s great to see . However, although the feature is enabled by default, you will still need to be part of the preview program to be able to use it.

To join the preview, you must download the Xbox Insider Hub app from the Microsoft Store. Once in the app, go to Previews on the side, then choose the Windows Gaming program. Once registered, you will begin receiving preview updates for the Xbox and Xbox Game Bar apps. Next, install the latest Xbox app update – version 2201.1000.38.0 – and you can choose a folder to install your PC games using the Xbox app.

Xbox app showing the current install location of a game

One thing to note is that you don’t choose the location of each game when you install it. You’ll need to head into the Xbox app settings to choose the default installation folder, and all new games will install there from there. You can, however, move them to another folder afterwards.

In addition to enabling this feature by default, some fixes are included in this update. Many of them are related to this new feature, which is probably why Microsoft is comfortable enabling it by default now. There are also some crushed accessibility issues and more:

Fixes in Xbox app build 2201.1000.38.0

  • Fixed compatibility issues with Gears 5 and Slay the Spire.
  • Fixed an issue where enabling advanced install features for a game would cause an access denied error.
  • Addressed various accessibility issues.
  • Fixed an issue that prevented changing the game folder.
  • Deleting the game folder no longer causes an issue where drives are not recognized in the Xbox app.
  • Fixed an issue that caused game updates to reinstall the full game.

The app also has some known issues in this version of the app, including some games that don’t fully support the new feature, such as Back 4 Blood and Phantasy Star Online 2. You can find the full list of issues below :

Known issues in Xbox app build 2201.1000.38.0

  • Moving a game from one drive to another indicates a “download” in the install queue, but the game is actually being moved, not reinstalled.
  • You may experience problems launching games installed on an external drive.
  • You may see an “invalid executable” error when launching certain games after initially installing them. Try restarting your PC to fix this problem.
  • Some games indicate that an update is available but selecting the update button does nothing.
  • Starting a game update can take a long time. This includes updates that add content to an existing install, such as a campaign mode.
  • Attempting to encrypt the game’s installation folder from the Windows shell may cause compatibility issues.
  • Mods for a version of a game on another platform may not work on the Xbox PC Game Pass version.
  • The following games are not yet compatible:
    • Back 4 Blood
    • Cricket 19
    • Star Fantasy Online 2
    • State of Decay 2
    • Games offering pre-installation
    • Note that game files for these games will not appear in the game’s install folder. The Xbox app does not currently show this, but will in a future update. If games outside of this list are not showing up in the game’s install folder, they’re probably backlogged as well.

If you’re already part of the Xbox Insider Program, you should be able to try out the new features right away. Hopefully, we’ll see mod support ramp up in the games available on the Xbox app.

[UPDATE 1/18 @ 2:00PM ET] This article originally stated that this feature was new, but it’s actually been available for a while. Today’s update enabled the feature by default and includes some fixes for the experience.

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10 Best Hidden Xbox Games

The original Xbox was the start of something new – a mark of Microsoft’s first venture into the video game industry. Having already celebrated its 20th anniversary, the Xbox has been home to many famous titles, with Halo presumably being his breadwinner.

RELATED: 10 Best Games Added To Game Pass In 2021, According To Metacritic

However, that’s not to say that Xbox has seen any underrated titles in its time. There are a few titles that suffered from obscurity or poor sales, but ended up being great games regardless.

Kung Fu Chaos (2003)

Martial artists compete in Kung Fu Chaos

Kung Fu Chaos is a fighting game like Super Smash Bros., but only more cartoonish and with lots and lots of kung fu. Players attempt to create a sort of King Fu movie using a cast of characters, with each character a parody of common martial arts tropes.


Each movie set had its own unique style and dangers, including obstacles such as dinosaurs and aliens. After each level is completed, players can watch their martial arts movie and be absolutely amused by the absurdity of it all.

Crazy Taxi 3: High Roller (2002)

Taxi driving on the street in Crazy Taxi 3

While the first two crazy cab games have been released for Dreamcast, the third game in the series, High-Roller, only appeared on the Xbox. High Roller basically took what was present in the previous two entries and then expanded on it.

RELATED: 10 Best Racing Games That Aren’t Mario Kart

High-Roller still plays like a classic crazy cab game, where you have to take the passengers to their destination as quickly as possible. The only difference is that players can perform stunning stunts such as jumps and drifts to earn more money from passengers. These stunts can be performed in several combos, bringing in large sums of money.

Psychonauts (2005)

Raz of Psychonauts on a Rail

Developed by Tim Schafer, Psychonauts follows the story of Rasputin, or Raz for short. He is a psychic spy who escaped from a circus and uses his psychic powers to uncover a plot taking place at a summer camp for psychics. To do that, he has to get into the minds of some really screwed up people.

Psychonauts is a platformer with a touch of psychic powers, with the player able to perform feats such as telekinesis and pyrokinesis to defeat enemies and solve puzzles. Mix art style and humor, and you have a fun and engaging game. It’s really a shame that such a great game, Psychonauts did not sell well upon release.

Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth (2005)

Call of Cthulhu Monster

One look at the title, and you can tell this is a very Lovecraftian game. Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth is a relatively unknown survival horror game that contains first-person shooter and stealth elements. It is set in 1922, where a private detective investigates a town cut off from the United States called Innsmouth.

Especially, The Dark Corners of the Earth does not have a HUD, which makes players more immersed in the gaming experience. Only the detective’s heartbeat and breathing can give players clues about his current status. The dark atmosphere and Lovecraftian themes that come with this game certainly don’t make things any better.

Voodoo Vince (2003)

Voodoo Vince and Kosmo

Xbox hosted several original platforms, such as the aforementioned one Psychonauts and Blinx to name a few. One platformer that isn’t talked about as much is vince voodoo, where players take control of a voodoo doll named Vince.

RELATED: 10 Best Modern 3D Platformers, Ranked

Like any other platform hero, Vince can jump, spin, and smash his way through numerous levels. But since he’s a voodoo doll, he also has access to voodoo powers, like inflicting pain on himself just to hurt his enemies. Voodoo stuff aside, vince voodoo comes with lots of puzzles, in which Vince has to hurt himself to get free. Ouch.

Phantom Dust (2004)

Ghost Dust

Phantom Dust is very different from most other action games. It combines third-person combat with card collecting, which is a key gameplay mechanic. Players must take control of an unnamed Esper and interact with other characters to figure out what happened to an Earth post-apocalyptic.

Overall, there are up to 300 power cards to form a deck. Each card comes with a different skill, such as an attack move or a defense move, and can be used against opponents. The more skills you collect, the bigger your arsenal will be in battle

Outrun 2 (2003)

Red Ferrari driving down the street in Outrun 2

To go past started on the arcade in 1986, and it would get a reboot on the Xbox several years later in the form of Exceed 2. Developed by Sega, Exceed 2 is an overlooked racing game with a simple premise. It’s about driving around town in a Ferrari, with the challenge of beating the clock.

Unlike most other racing games, Exceed 2 puts more emphasis on drifting. It’s terribly rewarding if you manage to pull off a drift. You can even drift for an infinite amount of time, which is kind of necessary if you want to clear the course as quickly as possible.

Jet Set Radio Future (2003)

Beat and the cast of Jet Set Radio Future

A little like Crazy Taxi 3: High Roller, Jet Set Radio Future is a sequel to a Sega Dreamcast game. It’s a rollerblade action game, with rollerblades spraying graffiti on walls and squeaking on rails around futuristic Tokyo.

RELATED: 5 Reasons The Sega Dreamcast Is A Forgotten Masterpiece (& 5 Reasons It Struggled)

Jet Set Radio Future has the same cel-shaded graphics as its prequel and features a free open world for everyone to explore. There is even a soundtrack made up of different genres such as rock, electronic and hip hop. Some multiplayer modes are available, and designing your own graffiti tag is also an option.

Oddworld: The Stranger’s Wrath (2005)

Stranger in the strange world

Oddworld: The Stranger’s Wrath is a weird game, to say the least (if the title isn’t highlighted enough). It’s an eclectic mix of first-person shooter and third-person platforming, and involves a bounty hunter named the Stranger who tracks down wanted criminals.

But here’s the catch – instead of using regular bullets, the Stranger uses small creatures such as insects and small mammals as ammunition – all of which can be fired from his trusty crossbow. Oddity aside, Stranger’s Wrath has more refined mechanics compared to previous entries in the Oddworld series, and the gameplay is very experimental.

The Punisher (2004)

The Punisher

Turns out Batman and Spiderman aren’t the only comic book superheroes with big games. The Punisher roughly coincided with the 2004 movie, but the game’s content is much more like Marvel Comics’ Punisher series.

This third-person shooter features the titular anti-hero who hunts down criminals, as he shoots any crook in his sight. There are also missions players can complete, many of which take place in well-known Marvel locations such as Stark Tower and Ryker’s Island. The Punisher also features several other Marvel characters, such as Iron Man, Nick Fury, and Kingpin.

NEXT: 10 Games Expected To Come To Xbox Game Pass In 2022

Moon Knight Arthur Harrow

Moon Knight trailer debunks a big Phase 4 villain theory

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Age of Empires 4’s first major patch of 2022 brings bug fixes and balance changes

Source: Xbox Game Studios

Age of Empires 4 launched on October 28, 2021 to an overall warm reception. There have been countless hours of gameplay since launch, both online and offline, and a number of bugs and balancing issues have surfaced. And now we have the first patch of 2022 – Patch 10257 – rolling out today to address a number of major issues players have been facing over the past few weeks.

A developer stream was hosted on January 18, detailing the changes coming in today’s patch.

This patch is significant, and this will cause your old skirmish replays and saves to stop. Campaign saves should not be affected by the fix. There are a number of general changes that will apply regardless of which civilization you are playing, as well as more targeted changes for individual civilizations.

For general changes, the player pool matchmaking system has been expanded by 67%, which means you should find ranked games faster thanks to the increased number of players to choose from. All scouts in the game now move 35% slower when carrying an animal carcass, giving them a nerf that is important in the early stages. And all rank II-IV horsemen have had their ranged armor changed from 1 to 2. This should make it easier to switch tech when clashing with archers.

There are a number of other civilization-specific mods that I’ve copied below. You can see the full list of patch notes on the official Age of Empires website.


  • Lancers now correctly activate the wall of spears ability.
  • Fixed an instance where the Prelate would get stuck while inhaling and no longer inspire other units.


  • Mounted archers now attack slower, fire rate changed from 2.0 to 2.5 (Updated to clarify previous wording).
    Developer’s Note: We have noticed a larger issue with attack speeds in general and will be doing a more robust hotfix in the future to address this issue.

  • Mounted archers no longer receive bonus attack speed and bonus damage from incendiary arrow technology.

  • Warrior Monks now move 25% slower while carrying a Relic

Developer’s Note: In line with the scout speed reduction, we are making this change to allow for more counterplay options against warrior monks who quickly scavenge relics on the map.


  • Driver decreased by 50 (Updated to clarify previous wording)

Developer’s Note: Mongol civilization starts quickly by not needing improved houses and stone income from the Ovoo. This change is intended to slow down the opening and give enemies more time to muster a defense.

  • Outpost cost changed from 70 wood to 100 wood

Developer’s Note: We found Outpost’s dash strategy to be too low an investment for the Mongols for its potency and difficulty to counter. Mongol outposts are always special because they offer the movement speed bonus of the Yam network.

  • Fixed an exploit where it was possible to own multiple Ovoos at the same time
  • Khaganate Mongol Palace can now be wrapped properly

Developer’s Note: We have removed the requirement from all Mongol buildings that they must have an empty queue to pack their bags. We think this will improve the player experience when trying to pack and move multiple buildings quickly or at the same time.

Delhi Sultanate

  • Lancers now correctly activate the wall of spears ability.
  • Dungeon tech times are no longer increased while under the influence of a mosque
  • Basic Piety research time reduced from 600 seconds to 135 seconds
  • Explosives base research time increased from 300 to 900 seconds

Developer’s Note: This now correctly matches other medium-cost Imperial era tech research times. The technology research times for the Delhi Sultanate are based on their power level and the age at which the technology is available.

  • Chaser Cannons base research time increased from 450 seconds to 1350 seconds

Developer’s Note: This now correctly matches other periods of researching very expensive technologies in the Imperial era.

  • Hardened Spearman base research time reduced from 210 seconds to 105 seconds
  • Holiness base research time reduced from 300 seconds to 210 seconds
  • Herbal medicine base research time reduced from 300 seconds to 180 seconds
  • Sharpened Blades base research time reduced from 1350 seconds to 300 seconds


  • Fire Lancer cost changed from 80F/20W/20G to 120F/20W/20G, bonus against ranged unit type removed

Developer’s Note: We envision this unit as an effective hit and run raider against buildings, sieges and villagers. On top of that, the current AoE damage is so powerful that it can quickly destroy and kill most units! We targeted these changes to make the Fire Lancer overall less cost effective for fighting enemy troops.

  • Fire Lancer III health increased from 135 to 155, charge weapon area of ​​effect damage will now deal 50% damage to surrounding enemy units (was 100%), torch damage increased been reduced from 51 to 36
  • Fire Lancer IV health decreased from 160 to 180, weapon damage reduced from 15 to 13, charge weapon damage reduced from 25 to 23, area damage reduced from charge weapon effect will deal 50% damage to surrounding enemy units, torch damage reduced from 55 to 40

That’s about it for this patch, but the team is apparently already working on another February patch that will cover some of the other outstanding issues that players are having. The notes mention demolition ships, the siege, the Abbasid dynasty, elephants and mounted cavalry.

If you want to start enjoying this RTS gem, one of the best gaming laptops can help get things off the ground. Age of Empires 4 can be purchased separately from Microsoft or Steam, but is also included in PC Game Pass.

age of empires 4

age of empires 4

Age of Empires 4 didn’t reinvent the RTS genre, but it did perfect many aspects. The campaign is absorbing, the multiplayer is competitive, and the visuals and audio are near perfect. If you’re a fan of the Age of Empires series, this is an easy recommendation.

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Beyond Call of Duty: 10 Activision Blizzard Game Series We Want to Play on Xbox

The game just had its “Disney buys Fox” moment. Microsoft has announced that it will spend nearly $69 billion to acquire Activision Blizzard, one of the video game industry’s largest third-party publishers. Or at least it was. Microsoft surprised us two years ago by acquiring Bethesda, but it turns out it was just a warm-up for Xbox’s biggest expansion yet.

The acquisition raises many important questions that go beyond video games. Will it trigger antitrust lawsuits? What will happen to the workers of Activision and their burgeoning organizing efforts? Will Microsoft do anything to clean up Activision’s notoriously toxic culture that has dominated headlines for the past few months? What will happen to CEO Bobby Kotick after the transition? And why do so many experts think this is all about the Metaverse?

Obviously, Microsoft buying Activision Blizzard will have ramifications for the games themselves. Call of Duty remains one of the biggest franchises in gaming on its own, and we have to imagine that the special partnership between PlayStation and CoD will soon come to an end. Will Sony make a game for Bungie? The company barely managed to avoid being ripped off by Microsoft by ending its Activision partnership after Destiny 2. Microsoft also highlighted some of the other huge and exclusive properties it scooped up in that coup. , including World of Warcraft, StarCraft, Overwatch, Diablo and Candy Crush saga.

Beyond those big names, however, Activision also has a treasure trove of overlooked classics. On top of all the alleged harassment, one of our biggest issues with the company is its cruel willingness to leave awesome franchises dormant just because they aren’t consistent megahits. This could change with Microsoft in charge. Whether it’s a new game, old games brought to Game Pass, or an appearance in a Microsoft Super Smash Bros. clone, here are 10 classic Activision games we’d love to see return to Xbox.

1. Crash Bandicoot

When Crash Bandicoot debuted, he was Sony’s mascot Mario from PlayStation. Original Crash developer Naughty Dog is still the crown jewel of the PlayStation studio. So Microsoft now owning this character just has a delicious level of irony. Bringing back the semi-connected Skylanders toy series (featuring former Sony mascot Spyro the Dragon and featuring Crash as a guest star) would also help Xbox reach younger gamers.

2. Hero DJ

The plastic instrument boom of the 2000s boomed and burned like few other genres in gaming history. Guitar Hero took on the rhythm game concepts pioneered by Parappa the Rapper and Dance Dance Revolution, and the offered to the general public. The original Harmonix developers are now owned by Epic, but Activision retains the Hero brand. Best of the bunch was the eclectic, genre-hopping, turntable-twisting, mash-up masterpiece known as DJ Hero. It was so good that Daft Punk lent their robot likenesses to the game.

3. Geometry Wars

The first Geometry Wars was a groundbreaking Xbox 360 launch title. Bizarre Creations has combined an addictive, top-down arcade shooter with stunning HD visuals. It proved that small games could have a big impact on new consoles. Geometry Wars returning to Xbox would be a throwback to rival Halo Infinite. And while we’re talking about Bizarre Creations, can we get a new Blur racing game?

4. Hex

Raven Software made a name for itself as one of the most prolific developers of the 1990s era of first-person shooters. Games like Heretic and Hexen gave Doom and Quake a run for their money. . Eventually, Raven became another Call of Duty support studio, but Microsoft would be wise to respect that history. If nothing else, Raven and Id being under the same roof must be a real trip for PC gamers of a certain age.

5. Trap!

Activision essentially invented the concept of “third party” by challenging Atari’s stranglehold on the 2600. The original Pitfall proved that other companies could make experiences even better than the ones that made the hardware. Forget Uncharted and Tomb Raider, it’s time for Pitfall Harry, the game’s first nimble treasure hunter, to claim his prize.

6. Prototyping

Browse Activision’s back catalog and you’ll see plenty of licensed games. Microsoft would have to make new deals if it wanted to bring back Activision’s published Marvel superhero games. But in 2010, Radical Entertainment used what it learned from making Hulk games to deliver an original adventure that lets you unleash superpowered mayhem in an open world. With Crackdown’s name fairly tarnished and Sony’s Infamous on hiatus, it’s now time for Prototype to reach its endgame.

7. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice

Dark Souls and Elden Ring are cross-platform, but between Bloodborne and the Demon’s Souls Remake, PlayStation is the best platform for fans of FromSoftware’s distinct brand of punishment. At the time, Activision seemed like an odd choice for the ninja-tastic version of Sekiro on the Miyazaki formula, and we’re not sure who owns what, but Microsoft would be foolish not to continue its own exclusive Souls franchise.

Recommended by our editors

8. The Lost Vikings

Last year’s Blizzard Arcade collection brought a handful of retro hits to modern consoles, including Blackthorne, The Lost Vikings, and Rock N Roll Racing. It reminded us that Blizzard can make games in addition to Warcraft and Warcraft-themed card games. Activision has smothered what was once one of the most exciting and creative PC game studios around. Let’s bring back that magic and the side-scrolling, time-jumping Vikings.

9. Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater

After years of running the skateboard simulation into the ground, Activision has put Tony Hawk games back on the rise with the recent and remarkable remake of Pro Skater 1 + 2. All Microsoft has to do is keep this good thing going with new levels, new games, and a new understanding that not everything has to be an annual release.

10. Transformers: War for Cybertron

Of all the horrible toy cartoons of the 1980s, Transformers is my favorite, if only because “robots that turn into cars” is a cool enough concept to overcome even the most cynical marketing. High Moon Studios Transformers: War for Cybertron is perhaps my favorite release of the material. On-command vehicle transformation adds fun possibilities to third-person gunfights, while the clockwork planet Cybertron itself is a compelling and doomed campaign setting. Activision doesn’t own Transformers, so Microsoft should strike a new licensing deal, but those games are too underrated to fall into digital oblivion. At the very least, put Optimus Prime in Warzone.

For more on Microsoft games, check out our list of the best Xbox Series X and Series S games, our Halo games ranking, and our favorite memories from Xbox’s last 20 years.

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Xbox’s Phil Spencer says PlayStation Game Pass Rival is ‘inevitable’

Phil Spencer thinks services like Xbox Game Pass are a growing trend in the gaming industry and a PlayStation version is inevitable.

Xbox head Phil Spencer has heard rumors of a PlayStation version of Xbox Game Pass, and he thinks such a service is inevitable. First launched in 2017, Xbox Game Pass gives subscribers a huge library of titles to download and play for one low monthly fee, with new games added every month. These games range from big name franchises like the Hitman series to smaller titles like The good life, and new versions like Halo Infinite The solo component has bolstered the number of service members over the past few months.

Rumors have already started circulating that Sony is currently working on its own response to Xbox Game Pass for PlayStation consoles, with former God of the war and twisted metal creator David Jaffe suggesting that such a service is in the works last April. While official details on this supposed subscription service (reportedly in development under the working name “Spartacus”) are still scarce and unconfirmed, rumor has it that it will feature games from older PlayStation consoles, which would be a boon for gamers. wish to return to older titles but are unable to do so due to the PlayStation 5’s lack of backward compatibility with games prior to the PlayStation 4 era. PS Now subscription service traffic in countries like the US and UK, adding more fuel to speculation that a new service will come to replace it.


Related: How PlayStation Spartacus Can Compete With Xbox Game Pass

Xbox chief Phil Spencer recently spoke with IGN on rumors of a PlayStation Game Pass alternative, and he thought its imminent arrival was an absolute certainty. He cites things like backwards compatibility and the desire to play any game at any time as part of the lure of services like Xbox Game Pass or the tentatively titled Spartacus, and states that Sony’s desire to emulate Game Pass is a sign that these services are the wave of the future for the gaming industry.”I think the right answer is to ship great games, ship them to PC, ship them to console, ship them to cloud, make them available on day 1 in the subscription. And I hope that’s what our competitor will do.

PlayStation Xbox Game Pass cover

Sure enough, Xbox Game Pass has had a great wave of success over the past few years, because while the total number of new subscribers to the service in 2021 was just short of Microsoft’s goals, it still totaled around 18 million members. This was bolstered by Microsoft’s new Xbox Cloud Gaming service, which allowed Ultimate subscribers to download and play Game Pass titles on their Android-powered mobile devices. This trend likely won’t slow down in 2022 either, as Xbox has already confirmed around 31 Day One releases for Xbox Game Pass over the coming year.

Phil Spencer has always been candid about the future of gaming, whether it’s the potential for Xbox Cloud Gaming on the next Steam Deck or Xbox Game Studio’s growing roster of talented developers like Bethesda. He believes that subscription services like Xbox Game Pass are an important part of that future and it’s only a matter of time before rival console maker PlayStation offers its own game collection service.

Next: Rainbow Six Extraction Will Be On Xbox Game Pass On Day One

Source: IGN

Yamask is Pokemon's most horrific ghost type

Yamask is Pokemon’s most horrific ghost type

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Big Xbox Game Pass Update Will Add Huge Xbox Series X Downloads | Games | Entertainment

Microsoft has confirmed that several big games will be on Xbox Game Pass this week.

This is good news for fans of the subscription, as there have already been a few big departures this month, especially for Kingdom Hearts 3.

But now fans have found out that Hitman 3 is coming to Xbox Game Pass on the same day that Rainbow Six Extraction debuts on day one.

And not only will the all-new Hitman experience be available to download and play through Xbox Series X and Xbox One, but so will Hitman 1 & 2.

Developers IO Interactive announced their big plans earlier this month, confirming that they plan to launch a new Hitman trilogy on Xbox and PC platforms.

A message shared via YouTube regarding the launch adds, “If you’re completely new to the world of assassination, we’re making it easier than ever to start and play the entire campaign in one package.

“The Hitman Trilogy includes Hitman 1, Hitman 2 and Hitman 3, giving you everything you need to dive straight into the world of assassination. And when Year 2 launches on January 20, the Hitman Trilogy will be available through the Xbox Game Pass catalog for console and PC.

“HITMAN 3 is coming to Steam to coincide with the start of Year 2 and will have full PC VR support and all the technical improvements we mentioned earlier such as Ray Tracing, XeSS and Variable Rate Shading.

“We are also working on supporting Steam achievements and trading cards. Additionally, we will include the Trinity Pack (the HITMAN 3 pre-order bonus) for free with all editions of HITMAN 3 for the first 30 days.

“The HITMAN Trilogy will be available with Xbox Game Pass, PC Game Pass, and Game Pass Ultimate on January 20, giving you everything you need to dive straight into the world of assassination. We’re excited to welcome a wave of new players to enjoy the complete trilogy via new platforms and new services.

As mentioned above, January 20 is also the same day that the Year 2 expansion launches in-game, adding brand new ways to enjoy the game.

This includes the new Elusive Target Arcade and Freelancer missions, both of which will be available to play this year.

First to go live will be the Arcade, with each Arcade contract tasking you with taking down consecutive elusive targets, one contract after another. Each must be completed to move on to the next – and there are additional complications added to the contract too.

If you fail an Arcade contract at any time, there will be a 12-hour lockout before you can retry the contract from the start. This lockout allows us to retain the high-stakes gameplay that characterizes Elusive Targets while giving players a clear indication of when they can play a particular Elusive Target again.

In Spring 2022, Freelancer Missions will be added, promising to introduce roguelike elements, strategic planning, and a customizable hideout.

No end date has been added to the new Hitman Trilogy on Xbox Game Pass, so everyone should have a chance to play through the new missions later this year.

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Hitman Trilogy Xbox Game Pass will be released on January 20

What incredible news!

The Hitman Trilogy, a bundle of Hitman, Hitman 2 and Hitman 3, will be heading to Xbox Game Pass on January 20.

IO Interactive made the announcement last week, adding that The Hitman Trilogy will also be available as a purchasable item on Windows PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series S & X, PS4, and PS5. On PC, the title will be available on both Steam and the Epic Games Store.

Hitman 3 will finally be available on Windows PC via Steam from the same day, with players able to play in VR and enjoy “all the technical improvements…such as Ray Tracing, XeSS and Variable Rate Shading”. Moreover, everything Hitman the titles will be playable in VR starting January 20.

A new mode called Elusive Target Arcade will also be introduced in Hitman 3 at this same time.

“Each arcade contract now tasks you with removing consecutive elusive targets, one contract after another,” IO Interactive said. “Each must be completed to move on to the next – and there are additional complications added to the contract as well.”

A new mode called Freelancer will follow later in 2022, also adding a customizable hideout for players to enjoy.

The Hitman Trilogy is heading to Windows PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series S & X, PS4, and PS5 starting January 20, 2022. It’s also available through Xbox Game Pass starting on that same date.

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