As part of its revised account service agreement, Microsoft now requires Xbox users to sign into their accounts every five years or risk potentially losing their Gamertag.
Only your gamertag will be affected, and not your purchases. If you fail to abide by the new rule, it might be made available for others to use.
Microsoft did not state whether or not the change will be applied retroactively, so you may want to log into your account in case you haven’t done so since, say, late 2011.
Microsoft regularly releases lapsed or inactive Gamertags back into the public domain, but this is the first time that the company has instituted a time frame. The new policy also applies Skype usernames.
You can find the full list of changes (gaming and non-gaming-related) on this handy page. Let us know what you think in the comments below.
Epic Games Store New Return Policy Allows Unlimited Refunds, But…
Gamers get more leniency and a simplified verification process.
Epic has updated the Epic Games Store’s return policy to make it more competitive with other digital storefronts.
With the old policy, you were allowed just two refunds per year, but now everyone has unlimited refunds within 14 days of purchase and with under two hours played.
The Epic Games Store doesn’t have a “self-service” solution, at least not yet, so you will have to go through Customer Support to request a refund.
A change was also made to the verification process for receiving a refund. Customers no longer have to provide their IP address, last four digits of the card used, account creation date, and other information if the return meets the set criteria, though a contact form will still need to be used.
Epic plans to add more regional pricing options to the store. There are currently 30 different regions available, encompassing a total of 130 countries.
Microsoft Re-Releases One Million Xbox Live Gamertags, Grab Yours
If you missed out on getting the Xbox Live gamertag you’ve always wanted, now might be your chance to get it.
Microsoft has re-released nearly one million gamertags that have gone unused since the original Xbox was around, and anyone with an active Xbox Live Gold subscription and at least one year of cumulative Gold subscriptions can grab one or more.
Microsoft didn’t reveal the gamertags but provided a few of the categories they fall under:
- Proper names
- Pop culture references (entertainment, sports, gaming)
- Geography and travel
- Types of food
- Science and technology
- Math and numbers
- Some of the greatest inventions of all time
You can use Xbox.com, the Xbox App on Windows 10, or your Xbox One to make the change, but keep in mind that you’ll be charged a $10 fee if it’s not your first time changing gamertags.
Microsoft Stops Making the Xbox 360
Microsoft has stopped production the Xbox 360 after 10 years the console has been on the market, but promises to provide continual support for owners.
The Xbox 360 is arguably Microsoft most successful console, having essentially dominated North America (the most important gaming market) in the previous generation. You could say the original Wii sold notably more, but hardly anyone compares Nintendo’s underpowered console to either the Xbox or PS3.
Needless to say, it did a lot to grow the brand, with Xbox boss Phil Spencer stating:
“The Xbox 360 helped redefine an entire generation of gaming at Microsoft. I am incredibly proud of all of the work and dedication that went into development of the Xbox 360 hardware, services and games portfolio over the last decade. And I’m grateful to the fans for their continued passion and support.
“Thanks to the Xbox 360, we evolved Xbox Live from the original Xbox into the thriving online gaming community it is today. And the console became a beloved gaming and entertainment hub with over 78 billion gaming hours played, nearly 486 billion Gamerscore on 27 billion achievements and over 25 billion hours spent in apps over its lifetime.
“Xbox 360 means a lot to everyone in Microsoft. And while we’ve had an amazing run, the realities of manufacturing a product over a decade old are starting to creep up on us. Which is why we have made the decision to stop manufacturing new Xbox 360 consoles. We will continue to sell existing inventory of Xbox 360 consoles, with availability varying by country.”
Despite production stopping, the company still provide the following support:
- Xbox 360 owners will continue to receive Xbox Live services for their console, such as online multiplayer gaming and parties, access to the apps they use today, and Games with Gold and Deals with Gold.
- Xbox Live servers that support Xbox 360 services will also remain online and active. Our Xbox 360 fans can continue to play their favorite games with the full support of Xbox Live.
- Gamers will also be able to continue to buy over 4,000 Xbox 360 games or Xbox 360 accessories at retail and through our Xbox 360 store online, while supplies last.
- Any Xbox 360 hardware will still be supported at xbox.com/support.
- And Xbox One owners will be able to continue to enjoy available Xbox 360 games through Xbox One Backward Compatibility – at no additional cost.
What do you think about the Xbox 360? Is one of the best, if not the best, gaming console you have ever owned? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Microsoft Announces New Xbox One Backwards Compatibility Games
Microsoft has added to their list of backwards compatible games for the Xbox One, with standouts including The Witcher 2, Skullgirls, Counter Strike GO and Soulcalibur.
The company has also changed their plans for the feature, which allows gamers to conveniently play Xbox 360 titles on their Xbox One, moving away from a monthly release to something a bit more immediate.
Going forward, all Xbox One Backwards Compatible games will be released as soon as they become available rather than in batches, with Microsoft explaining:
“What this means for you is that you won’t have to wait to find out the latest titles; we’ll release whatever is available, when they’re available, once each title has received the engineering and publisher stamp of approval.”
The full list of new Backwards Compatible games can be found by clicking here.
Xbox One and Xbox 360 owners in select regions can download The Witcher 2:Assassins of Kings for free on Xbox.com till February 5th.
Here Are the First 104 Xbox One Backward Compatible Games
Microsoft has announced the first 104 games to be backward compatible with the Xbox One, and it’s quite an impressive lineup.
The list includes the complete Gears of War catalog, Assassin’s Creed II, Fallout 3, Borderlands, Castle Crashers and even cult classics like Metal Slug, Pac-Man and Sonic CD. Going forward, all Xbox 360 games available through Games with Gold after November 12, 2015, will be playable on the Xbox One.
- Future Xbox 360 Games with Gold Titles Will be Backwards Compatible on Xbox One
- Sega Will Make Wii’s Bayonetta Xbox One Backwards Compatible?
Without further ado, here are all the 104 Xbox One backward compatible games. Let us know if your favorites are missing:
|A Kingdom for Keflings||Lode Runner™|
|A World of Keflings||LUMINES LIVE!|
|Alien Hominid HD||Mass Effect™|
|Assassin’s Creed II||Metal Slug 3|
|Asteroids & Deluxe||Metal Slug XX|
|Banjo Kazooie®: Nuts & Bolts||Might & Magic Clash of Heroes™|
|BattleBlock Theater||Monday Night Combat|
|Bejeweled 2||Monkey Island: Special Edition|
|Bellator: MMA Onslaught||Monkey Island 2: Special Edition|
|Beyond Good & Evil HD||Ms. Splosion Man™|
|Blood of the Werewolf||Mutant Blobs Attack!!!|
|Borderlands||NBA JAM: On Fire Edition|
|Call of Juarez® Gunslinger||NiGHTS into dreams…|
|Castle Crashers||Operation Flashpoint™: Dragon Rising|
|CastleStorm||Pac-Man: Championship Edition™|
|Centipede & Millipede||Pac-Man: Championship Edition DX+|
|Condemned: Criminal Origins||Perfect Dark|
|Crazy Taxi™||Perfect Dark Zero|
|Deadliest Warrior: Legends||Phantom Breaker:Battle Grounds|
|Defense Grid: The Awakening||Pinball FX™|
|DiRT 3||Plants vs. Zombies|
|DiRT Showdown||Prince of Persia|
|Discs of Tron||Putty Squad|
|Doom||Rayman 3 HD|
|Doom II||R-Type Dimensions™|
|Dungeon Siege III||Sacred Citadel|
|Earthworm Jim HD||Sega Vintage Collection: Alex Kidd & Co.|
|Fable II||Sega Vintage Collection: Golden Axe|
|Fallout 3||Sega Vintage Collection: Monster World|
|Feeding Frenzy||Sega Vintage Collection: Streets of Rage|
|Feeding Frenzy 2: Shipwreck Showdown||Shadow Complex|
|Gears of War||Sonic CD|
|Gears of War 2||Sonic The Hedgehog|
|Gears of War 3||Sonic The Hedgehog 2|
|Gears of War: Judgment||Sonic The Hedgehog 3|
|Golden Axe™||Super Meat Boy|
|Halo: Spartan Assault||Supreme Commander 2|
|Hardwood Backgammon®||Tom Clancy’s RainbowSix Vegas|
|Hardwood Hearts®||Tom Clancy’s RainbowSix Vegas 2|
|Hardwood Spades®||South Park: The Stick of Truth™|
|Hexic HD||Toy Soldiers|
|Ikaruga||Toy Soldiers: Cold War|
|Jetpac Refuelled||Tron: Evolution|
|Joy Ride Turbo||Ugly Americans: Apocalypsegeddon|
|Just Cause 2||Viva Piñata|
|Kameo™: Elements of Power||Viva Piñata: Trouble In Paradise|
|LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean: The Video Game||Wolfenstein 3D|
|LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Saga||Zuma|
WWE 2K16 Gets Awesome Launch Trailer, Watch It Now!
To promote the launch of WWE 2K16, 2K Sports released an awesome new trailer that will likely have many wrestling fans racing to their locale retail outlet to buy the game.
The trailer not only shows more gameplay, but also highlights the cool new features that WWE 2K16 has to offer. These include the three-man commentary booth, long list of innovative new moves, and seemingly limitless number of customizable elements that players can fiddle with.
Let’s face it, regardless of how good it is, WWE fans are going to end up buying 2K16 because it will be fun. Yes, whether or not it is plagued by the same problems as its predecessors, it has fun written all over it.
Fortunately, ‘fun’ isn’t its only selling proposition, although it is a very strong one. All the cool new gameplay additions, such as the ability to use the ropes during pinfalls and attack an opponent during their entrance; improved graphics and sound; and robust new features contribute to WWE 2K16’s allure.
Could this be the game that rejuvenates the franchise after the mixed reactions garnered by the previous year’s lacklustre effort? Only time will tell…
Have you had the chance to play WWE 2K16? If so, let us know what you think about the game in the comments section below.