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Tag Archives: Xbox Live

  • Huge Xbox One Spring Sale Begins

    xbox one spring salesA giant Spring sale has just gone live for the Xbox and it includes deals for movies, games, TV and season passes for both the Xbox 360 and the Xbox One.

    There may be different deals depending on your region, but there are major sales going in the United Kingdom and the United States right now.

    On top of the great digital sales, which will be held throughout the week, there is a brand new special trade-in offer that will allow Xbox 360 owners to trade in their console with a 250GB hard drive for a $125 off coupon for an Xbox One at Gamestop.

    Pool Nation FX has also gone live as a free Games with Gold title on the Xbox One, along with Child of Light and Rayman Legends. Over on the Xbox 360 Gears of War Judgement and Terraria are available for free this month. Usually only three games are available each month through the Games with Gold program but this month five games are up for grabs as a way of celebrating the Xbox's most recent success.

    In other news, Microsoft posted a new video to their Xbox Youtube channel that shows off launch events for Gears of War 3 that were held across the world. It was a bit odd for Microsoft to upload a video like that now, and many are assuming that a brand new Gears of War remaster may be coming. Could this latest video be some sort of hint towards a new Xbox One Gears of War game?

  • Xbox Live downed by Hackers Again

    xbox live hackersThis week Xbox Live went down across the world and players were having trouble with connecting to the online service for a few hours. Whilst Microsoft did not explain what the issue was, a hacker group has already claimed that they were responsible for the shutdown.

    Last year Microsoft dealt with a large hacking problem around Christmas time and it stopped a lot of people from connecting to the Xbox Live servers for a few days. Whilst the latest attack was no way near as severe, it still shows that Microsoft's servers are still vulnerable to attack and this is causing a disruption to the service Microsoft provides to Xbox players.

    The hacker group claiming responsibility for the latest hacker attack is named TeamBudyBear and they have made statements on their Twitter to explain the attack.

    "We're doing these attacks to show everyone how bad big company's care about security. We as teenagers know how to fix their servers. Pathetic."

    Whilst TeamBudyBear are not using their technological expertise for any good, what they're saying does have an air of truth to it. If Microsoft's security was any better, none of these attacks from hackers would be possible. In fact, it's almost a little disappointing to see that despite the huge hacker issue from last year, hackers still find it incredibly easy to bring down Microsoft's servers.

    For the time being all of Microsoft's services are now working as intended and it looks like the attacks from TeamBudyBear have stopped.

  • February Games with Gold Deals Announced

    Games with Gold DealsIt's February already, and that means it's time for yet another lineup for the Games with Gold promotion. This month, we have three new games available for free, two of which are available right now. The third game is an Xbox 360 title and will be available half way through the month, and will swap out with the other Xbox 360 game currently available.

    The first game for the start of the month is an arcade title for Xbox 360, named Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons. This game features pretty story driven puzzle platformer experience, and whilst it is just an arcade game, it certainly offers a very thorough experience for players.

    Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons usually goes for $14.99, and it will be free for Gold members till February 15th.

    A day after, Sniper Elite V2, which usually retails for $29.99 will then be put up for free for Xbox 360 Gold players. In Sniper Elite V2, players are encouraged to use stealth and tactics to take out enemies, instead of a face first, guns blazing approach that many shooters tout today.

    Sniper Elite V2 is also a third person title, so it should definitely offer a new experience to those used to playing Battlefield or Call of Duty.

    Finally, Xbox One players will be able to treat themselves to a free game all the way through the entirety of February as part of the Games with Gold deal.

    The free Xbox One game is called #IDARB, and usually retails for $14.99. #IDARB is a 8-bit pixel themed jumping jetpack arcade game for up to eight players.

  • Lizard Squad Set For Ruining A Happy Xbox Christmas

    Lizard SquadIf you weren't accustomed to the name already, Lizard Squad is the title given to a group of online hackers that have spent their time bringing down online services for big corporations, and in the past they have managed to attack Sony, League of Legends and many other companies, typically related to the video game industry.

    They have now set their sights on an even bigger challenge, and it is actually quite scary, considering the damage they have done in the past. Lizard Squad took to Twitter earlier this month to announce that the plan to bring down Xbox Live on December 25th, and they hope to keep it down forever.

    The tweet stated, "This is not a threat, but a promise. On Christmas we will tap in to Microsoft and shut down Xbox Live, forever!"

    Obviously, Microsoft are taking the issue very seriously, and I'm sure they will do their best to ensure server performance is as good as possible leading up to Christmas. Microsoft did issue a warning that increased traffic may cause Xbox Live servers to be a little slower than normal on Christmas day, but other than this, no mention has been given about the potential loss of service from Lizard Squad.

    Honestly, I don't think Microsoft has too much to worry about, and there's no way Lizard Squad would be able to bring down their servers forever, if at all. We'll just have to wait for Christmas day to see exactly what happens.

  • Custom Backgrounds and Screenshots Confirmed for Xbox One

    xbox one custom themesNew details have emerged about a planned update that will add a bit more customization to the Xbox One dashboard.

    Phil Spencer, head of Xbox, has recently confirmed that the Xbox One will soon be getting new options for custom backgrounds, along with talking about other plans for the platform, in a new TiC podcast.

    During the podcast, Phil Spencer mentioned that backgrounds, screenshots and themes will be coming to the Xbox One soon, however Spencer failed to mentioned exactly when this would be.

    When asked about the Xbox One UI and the likelihood of seeing background and profile pic customization options, Phil Spencer replied with, "You will see it, I'll announce it here - I was told themes and background pics are something we're working on, and screenshots -- people beat me up about screenshots - I know people like to customize the look of their dashboard, we're going to deliver them, I can't give you a when yet."

    By the sounds of it, a lot more UI customization options are in the works, but it may be a while before we see them pushed out to the Xbox One dashboard. It's no doubt that these new features do not have as much of a priority as other UI and software content for the Xbox One, but it's nice to hear that they are coming eventually.

    We'll let you know as soon as we hear more details about the new Xbox One UI customization options - for now, you'll have to make do with what's already available.

  • Agent Locke Could be Playable Character in Halo 5

    halo 5 agent lockeAgent Locke is a new character to the lore of Halo that will make his first appearance in the live actions series, Halo Nightfall, however, the actor that plays Locke suggests the character will play a big part in Halo 5: Guardians as well.

    In fact, according to actor Mike Colter, the man who plays Agent Locke, the main protagonist in Halo 5 may instead be Agent Locke instead of the Master Chief.

    Colter revealed in a recent interview with X-One magazine that "I'm a playable character in Halo 5." Colter went on to explain that, "Once Halo: The Master Chief Collection is released, and then Halo 5 comes out shortly thereafter, you're basically going to be playing a game with me as the primary character.

    "I'll have some cool weaponry, and some cool abilities, because by that time I'll be a Spartan IV."
    "What's not known, is whether I'm a friend or foe," Colter suggested. "The relationship between Master Chief and Jameson Locke is going to be interesting. Because what's the outcome?
    We can't really confirm or deny any of this information at this point as 343 Industries have yet to respond, but it would certainly turn the scales if Agent Locke ended up becoming the main protagonist to the current Halo trilogy.
    It wouldn't be the first time players have been able to play another character in the Halo franchise - in Halo 2, half of the campaign missions were played through the eyes of the Arbiter.

  • October Xbox Live Games with Gold Deals Announced

    xbox live games with goldI have started to quietly anticipate the release of the Xbox Live Games with Gold and PlayStation Plus free games each month, and like clockwork, each month new games are announced, and thousands of players bag a bunch of titles for free.

    This month, Microsoft has announced a few new games for the Games with Gold promotion, some of which players may enjoy.

    The first title released as part of the October Xbox Live Games with Gold promotion is Battlefield: Bad Company 2, and whilst this game is now incredibly old, when compared to the lifespan of the Xbox 360, it is still a great title, and if you haven't played it, I'd definitely suggest giving it a try. Many old school Battlefield fans have named Bad Company 2 the last "good" Battlefield game, but you'll have to make your own mind up about that one.

    Bad Company 2 will be available to download for free till October 15th, and a day later, Darksiders 2 will be put up for free. Darksiders 2 is another old title, but it's important to remember both of these titles are AAA games, so I don't think there's worth complaining about it. Both of the aforementioned titles are for Xbox 360.

    As for the Xbox One, Chariot has been put up for free - it is a new arcade game developed by Canadian developers Frima. Chariot will debut on the Xbox One in October, so it's pretty nice to see it being offered for free - the game will be available till the end of October.

  • New August Xbox Live Games With Gold Announced

    xbox live games with gold augustWe've just rolled into a new month, and that means it's time to talk about the next Xbox Live Games with Gold lineup. We've got quite a few treats in store this week, including some Xbox 360 retail titles, as well as a couple digital-based Xbox One games.

    Firstly, Xbox One owners with Xbox Gold will be able to treat themselves with Crimson Dragon, an Xbox exclusive that saw itself as one of the few available Xbox One launch titles the day the console was released. Crimson Dragon is an indirect sequel to Panzer Dragoon, a game that made it's rounds on the Original Xbox many years ago. Crimson Dragon will be available all the way throughout the month.

    Alongside Crimson Dragon, Xbox Live gold subscribers will be able to get their hands on Strike Suit Zero: Director's Cut, which made it to reality after successfully being backed on Kickstarter. Both Xbox One games are available till August 31st.

    As for the Xbox 360, players will be able to pick up Motocross Madness, a Trials lookalike till August 15th, whilst later on in the month, Dishonored will be available from August 16th till August 31st.

    All of these games are still fairly new, so Microsoft are being pretty generous with month's round of Xbox Live free Gold games. This is possibly one of the best months we've seen since the Xbox Live Games with Gold loyalty reward program began.

  • April Lineup for Xbox Live Games with Gold Revealed

    games with gold aprilAnother month has gone by already, and that means another lineup of free games for both the PlayStation network and Xbox Live. For those that didn't know, both Microsoft and Sony have been running a monthly loyalty program that offers players free games to download each month in return for paying a monthly subscription to their services.

    So far it's been a pretty successful venture, but a lot of gamers have criticized Microsoft for not offering a decent rotation of games. The team behind the Xbox Live games with Gold program have recently revealed that they plan to improve the program over the coming months, and it looks like April is looking to be the first month to showcase these new improvements.

    Until April 16th, if you are a paying Xbox Live Gold member you will be able to download and play Hitman Absolution for free. Once downloaded, the title will stay in your game library, even after your Gold membership is cancelled.

    Hitman Absolution is a great game, and if you haven't had the chance to play it yet I'd definitely suggest checking it out this month.

    After April 16th, Hitman Absolution will be replaced with Deadlight, a side scrolling horror arcade game, which despite looking fairly cheap on the graphics, is a great way to pass the time.

    Hopefully the Xbox Live games with Gold program will continue to improve, as so far Sony's offering has been far superior to Microsoft's.

  • Games with Gold Free Game Offering May Improve

    games with gold new game

    As it stands right now, the PS Plus loyalty offering completely trumps what Microsoft has to offer to their monthly Xbox LIVE subscribers, but Phil Spencer has tried to explain why at SXSW. However, no matter how much explaining is done, there is no denying that the PS Plus offering is miles better than the Games with Gold offering.

    One reason why Phil Spencer feels as if the Games with Gold offering is a little different to the PS Plus games collection is that players can still get access to games, even after their subscription ends. Whilst this is true, surely Sony is putting a lot more effort into their deals to even think about allowing players to get access to games that are only a year old. In the case of Microsoft, most Games with Gold titles are five to eight years old already.

    Phil Spencer stated at SXSW that, "One of our issues with Games with Gold, differences between the other system we get compared to, is the fact that with Games with Gold, you get to keep that game, regardless of whether you continue to subscribe. The business around Games with Gold, for us, is just fundamentally different from some of the the other programs that are out there, which does put a different financial picture on a - you're going to go buy a game that's brand new, the cost of putting that in, just to be kind of blunt about it."

    However, despite all of the explaining, Phil finally revealed that he's been sitting down with the guys behind the project, and that in the future he thinks "you'll see at least something that feels more true to what I think Games with Gold should look like with the constraints that are there." He didn't seem to mention what these constraints were.

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