Games with Gold launched on Xbox Live in July 2013. The program, which originally offered two free games to Xbox Live gold subscribers each month, was initially launched for Xbox 360, with Xbox One titles being included in the deal from June 2014 onwards. Throughout the services' lifetime, subscribers have been treated to a number of hit titles, including Rayman: Legends, Hitman: Absolution, and Bioshock Infinite.
In recent years, Games with Gold has come under fire by subscribers of Xbox Live Gold , with complaints regularly aimed towards the recent lack of big titles provided on the service. This shift in offerings may be a direct result of the huge success of Microsoft's crown jewel, Xbox Game Pass.
With hundreds of games now being provided to Xbox players for a small monthly cost, Games with Gold is seemingly becoming less of a staple. Despite this, Xbox continues to provide four games a month to Xbox Live subscribers, and the titles for January 2021 have now been announced.
In a post on Xbox Wire , Microsoft has announced the next four titles available under the Games with Gold offer for Xbox Live Golf subscribers. With the recent release of Xbox Series X/S, all four titles will be available via backward compatibility, as well as playable on their original release consoles.
Little Nightmares — ($19.99 ERP): Available January 1 to 31
Help your character, Six, survive The Maw: a massive and mysterious vessel inhabited by corrupted souls looking to make you their next meal. Reconnect with your inner childhood and unleash your imagination to escape the horrors within and find salvation.
Dead Rising — ($19.99 ERP): Available January 16 to February 15
In this remastered version of the original game, survive the flesh-hungry undead mob in the Willamette shopping center using a range of weapons at your disposal. As photojournalist Frank West, you’ll have 72 hours to fight off the zombie horde and discover the reason behind the outbreak.
The King of Fighters XIII — ($29.99 ERP): Available January 1 to 15
An upgraded version of the original arcade classic, utilize your Hyper Drive power gauge to let loose devastating strikes and combinations. Don’t miss out on this final chapter of the “Ash Saga,” full of anger and betrayal, which ends here.
Breakdown — ($9.99 ERP): Available January 16 to 31
Trapped inside a mysterious lab and unable to remember his past, Derrick Cole must fight his way out using his newfound extraordinary powers. Combining hand-to-hand combat, state-of-the-art weapons, and an intense story line, embark on a thrilling and suspenseful search for the truth in this first-person action-adventure title.
You can check out the full trailer for the January 2021 additions to Games with Gold below.
WHAT THIS MEANS
While Xbox Game Pass continues to expand and offer players a huge variety of titles to sink their teeth into, it's great to see that Microsoft continues to update one of their most popular subscription benefits. Games with Gold has been running for over 7 years now, and while the magnitude of games may not reach the expectations of every gamer out there, the offering of up to four free titles per month is nothing to complain about.
The addition of Little Nightmares and Dead Rising also shows that Microsoft may be attempting to improve Games with Gold from now on, with both games receiving great reception upon release. Dead Rising paved the way for a new style of zombie survival games, while Little Nightmares introduced players to a whole new horror experience. It's also a good thing that original Xbox games are still included within the service as well, potentially going someway to reviving these old classics.
Fans may start to wonder what the next steps will be for Games with Gold in 2021. With the recent release of the next generation of Microsoft consoles, Xbox Series X/S, are subscribers going to see next-generation games added to the service in the near future? Given how quickly the service was updated after the release of the Xbox One back in 2014, players will be hoping that a new library of titles will be coming to their consoles for free sooner rather than later.