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    Xbox One

    If you like free stuff (and who doesn't) Amazon has a great deal on the Xbox One that should appeal to those folks who have yet to purchase Microsoft's game console. The retailer is currently selling the Assassin's Creed bundle for its regular price of $349, but has added a second Xbox One controller and yet another free game, Wolfenstein: The New Order.

    That's right, you can begin your journey with the Xbox One with not only a second controller (normally priced at $55), so a friend or family member can join in the fun, but three games for free. Assassin's Creed Unity, Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag and the terrific single player first person shooter Wolfenstein: The New Order, which is usually priced at around $40. There's no word on when this special bundle deal will expire so we would suggest jumping in now.

    Source: Amazon


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    The last week of the month is here faster than any of us would expect. But before we start thinking about what March has in store, we need to take a look at what games are coming out this week for the Xbox One.

    We have three big titles coming out this week, with Resident Evil: Revelations 2 – Episode 1 being the biggest of them. Then, later in the week we have an ID@Xbox game making its splash onto the console. So continue reading to get the full rundown on what's out this week.

    Resident Evil: Revelations 2 – Episode 1

    Only the strong survive

    Resident Evil: Revelations 2 is the next chapter in the original zombie series with the game taking place between the events of Resident Evil 5 & 6. In Revelations 2, you control Claire Redfield and Barry Burton who have their own unique stories, but both share the will to survive.

    Claire has been kidnapped along with Moira and taken to a prison on an island. They awaken to see their friend ripped to shreds by a strange monster and begin to do whatever they can to get out. As for Barry, when he learns that his daughter Moira is kidnapped, he makes his way to the island to save her. Along the way, he meets a special little girl that helps him with his mission.

    Revelations 2 is an episodic title with episode 1 coming out on Friday. The following episodes will be released weekly.

    Dragon Ball Xenoverse

    Create the greatest Saiyan

    Xenoverse is the latest take on the long-running Dragon Ball series. However, this is the first one to arrive on next-gen consoles. So of course, it has updated graphics running at 1080p, 60fps, but that's not the only big update. You also get fully destructible environments.

    Dragon Ball Xenoverse is the first time that a Dragon Ball game features a unique story. This story will be played out by your own created character. Your character will become an apprentice to original Dragon Ball characters as the story progresses.

    Dragon Ball Xenoverse hits shelves today, February 24.

    • Dragon Ball Xenoverse – Xbox One – $59.99 – Xbox Store

    Dynasty Warriors 8: Empires

    Create your legacy

    Dynasty Warriors 8: Empires is the second expansion for Dynasty Warriors 8. Some of the newest features that Empires will add is the ability to customize your soldiers, horses, and even your clan banner. You can also get married and have children to carry on your legacy into the future.

    Just like any other Dynasty Warriors game, Empires is a third person action title that forces you to take on hundreds of enemies as once. However, this time around the game has seasons which can bring unexpected weather at any time. And this can help swing a battle in your favor.

    Dynasty Warriors 8: Empires releases today, February 24.

    • Dynasty Warriors 8: Empires – Xbox One – $49.99 – Xbox Store

    Pneuma: Breath of Life

    Can you solve the puzzle of life

    Pneuma: Breath of Life is a first-person puzzler that comes our way via ID@Xbox. The game is set to be exclusive to the Xbox One for 30 days. In it, you play as Pneuma, who is on a relentless journey to discover himself and how he came to be.

    Pneuma features puzzles that require perception, observation, and lateral thinking. The developers wanted to make sure the game wasn't about how good one is with a controller, but rather how one surveys and perceives certain situations.

    Pneuma: Breath of life, comes to your Xbox One this Friday for $19.99


    So, any of those take your fancy? Let us know in the comments below!


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    Xbox Deals With Gold

    Microsoft has kicked off this week's Deals with Gold promotion, which sees Sleeping Dogs Definitive Edition and Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag on sale for $24 (£16) and $25 (£12) respectively. Looking for some new games for your Xbox One? Now would be the time to check these titles out.

    Two great adventure games at a reasonable price to prepare yourself for the weekend ahead. Here are the Xbox store links to get you started:

    Will you be picking up either title for your Xbox? Let us know in the comments.


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    Grand Theft Auto V Heists

    There's good news and bad news for fans of Grand Theft Auto V. Rockstar Games stated today that the long awaited Heists mode for GTA Online will launch on March 10 for the console version of the game, including the Xbox One and Xbox 360 versions. Sadly, the long awaited PC port of the open world action game has been delayed yet again and is now scheduled for launch on April 14.

    Rockstar stated:

    "Heists will bring a brand new 4-player cooperative gameplay experience to GTA Online, giving players the chance to team up to pull off a string of intense, multi-part raids and robberies across Los Santos and Blaine County. Over the next couple of weeks, we will have more information about the launch of Heists and about other new features that we will release with it."

    PC gamers were previously told their version of GTA V would be launched on Jan. 27, before Rockstar announced a delay that pushed the date back to March 24. This new delay to April 14 pushes back the launch date by another three weeks. Rockstar said:

    "Our apologies to PC gamers worldwide who have been counting down the days until the launch of the game, but a bit more time is needed to ensure that the game is as polished as possible, and to make certain that both Heists and the GTA Online experience are ready to roll out on day one for PC. As a gesture of thanks for your understanding, we will grant anyone who has pre-ordered the game an additional $200,000 in-game cash for use in GTA Online."

    Source: Rockstar Games


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    Neverwinter for Xbox One

    The long awaited Dungeons and Dragons-themed MMO game Neverwinter will finally be released for the Xbox One on March 31. The game, from developer Cryptic Studios and publisher Perfect World Entertainment, launched a closed beta test for the game on Microsoft's console earlier this month.

    The free-to-play game, which first launched for the PC in mid-2013, will be available for all Xbox One owners with a paid Xbox Live Gold subscription. Here's what those gamers can expect when Neverwinter is released:

    "The story and campaign content will function a bit differently than it did on PC. At launch, Neverwinter will include all the content from the base game and the Tyranny of Dragons expansion. This means that the Xbox One version of Neverwinter will include all dungeons and skirmishes that were present at the PC version's launch in addition to the ones added with Tyranny of Dragons. The Sharandar, Dread Ring, Icewind Dale, and PvP campaigns as well as the Gauntylgrym zone (along with the dungeons and skirmishes associated with them) will be released on Xbox One in later expansions."

    "The Xbox One servers and character rosters will be separate from the PC's, providing players with a fresh start in the Forgotten Realms. While Xbox players won't be battling alongside their PC counterparts, they will be able to traverse the Sword Coast with friends from around the world on an international server! All playable races will be present at Neverwinter's launch on the Xbox One. This includes the default races and all premium races such as the Menzoberranzan Renegade, Moon Elf, and Dragonborn will be purchasable with downloadable content."

    Another major PC fantasy MMO, The Elder Scrolls Online, will launch for the Xbox One on June 9.

    Source: Neverwinter website


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    The Witcher Twos-days: Episode 4 airs tonight on Twitch!

    The Witcher 3 is set to be one of the year's biggest role-playing games when it arrives on Xbox One, Windows, and Playstation 4 this May. The third game in the Witcher series differentiates itself from other open-world action-RPGs with its dark and mature storyline filled with meaningful player choices and memorable sidequests.

    To help prepare our readers for The Witcher 3, Windows Central has begun a new weekly Twitch series focused on The Witcher 2. Every Tuesday night at 8pm Central (9pm Eastern, 6pm Pacific), we play through another section of the game while you guys watch the stream at Twitch.tv/Eastxtwitch. Join us and engage in our social take on this epic Witcher adventure!

    Did you miss the previous episode of our Witcher Twos-day series? Don't worry; we've got a full write-up that will get you up to speed – complete with screenshots from the stream!


    Watch live video from EastXTwitch on Twitch

    Follow this link for part two of tonight's episode. We don't want them both autoplaying at once.

    Previous recaps

    • Prelude: About the hero Geralt and a quick summary of the first Witcher game
    • Episode 1 recap: The assassination of Foltest and Geralt escapes the prison
    • Episode 2 recap: Geralt and team arrive in Flotsam, where he rescues Dandelion and Zoltan. Geralt agrees to help a sorceress kill a sea monster called the kayran.

    Meet Malena

    The Witcher 2 Xbox 360

    Last time, we had just stepped outside the games of the port city of Flotsam and into the surrounding forests. Not far beyond the city walls we now discover the small village of Lobinden. Hunters, fisherman, and boat-builders occupy the settlement's wooden homes.

    Humans, elves, and dwarves live together relatively peacefully in Lobinden compared to other areas of the Witcher's world. Still, we arrive in the middle of a conflict between a group of soldiers and a female elf called Malena. The soldiers accuse her of spying for the Scoia'tael terrorists. Two soldiers who disappeared in a cave were last seen with her.

    Geralt suggests that he search the cave to discover what happened to the soldiers. The soldiers and accused elf agree to meet up with him at the port to learn his judgment. We don't make it to the caves to resolve the quest in this episode, but we'll discover what happened to them eventually!

    Triss and Cedric

    The Witcher 2 Xbox 360

    We climb a ladder to a wooden platform that stretches between trees. At top, we witness two male elves discussing a departed female. They walk away, leaving Geralt to meet with Triss, his sometimes-girlfriend.

    Triss has been staying with Vernon Roche's Temerian soldiers during the group's visit to Flotsam. Although the soldiers are somewhat vulgar, Triss gets along well with them.

    As for Geralt, the amnesia he has suffered since the opening of the first Witcher game has started to improve. He remembers falling while defending a group of nonhumans from an angry mob of jerk humans. Geralt felt his life slipping away, and Triss arrived too late to save him. And yet he's still alive and kicking, a mystery that has lingered throughout both games so far.

    As Geralt and Triss shoot the breeze, they encounter an elf named Cedric. He uses the knowledge he has acquired through his long life to work as a lookout and guide for humans. He also drinks a lot, which Geralt teases him about.

    The Witcher 2 Xbox 360

    We ask Cedric about the kayran that Geralt has been hired to hunt and learn that it has grown far too large, with strange growths on its tentacles. The creature had been living in a swamp before it outgrew its surroundings. It even sank a boat there, which Cedric recommends we investigate.

    Cedric also tells us about an elf woman named Moril who has been missing for over a year. Moril had worked together with another elf named Seherim. Some believe the forest took her, but Cedric suspects foul play. Depending on choices we make later in the chapter, we might eventually discover her whereabouts.

    Finally, Cedric mentions a potential job to Geralt. A mental institution long ago burned to the ground, killing its inmates and leaving the land cursed. Two daredevils have recently sought to explore it and disappeared. If our hero can find them or their remains, he'll receive a reward. Witchers gotta eat!

    Triss abruptly casts a teleport spell and tells us to meet her near the boat wreck.

    Investigating the boat wreck

    The Witcher 2 Xbox 360

    After taking a long and winding path through the hilly forest, Geralt finally meets up with Triss. Why couldn't she have let him teleport with her? At any rate, they discover a vast swamp area surrounded by ancient ruins. Based on the nearby tracks, a human has been here recently.

    Geralt and Triss meet danger once they climb down to the actual swamp floor. Not from the kayran, but a swarm of drowners! When a hanged criminal gets discarded in a lake, he or she often returns as a drowner. Maybe people shouldn't throw their hanged dudes in the water, right?

    The Witcher 2 Xbox 360

    The group swarms us, and it takes me a few tries to survive the fight unscathed. By staying on the outskirts of the group and avoid letting them surround Geralt, I finally thwart the monsters.

    Upon searching the remains of the boat, we discovered the ship's log. The captain intended to report of his journey to his superiors, but died before he could complete his mission. Geralt resolves to mail the report for him. We don't discover a mailbox during this episode, but hopefully we can honor the captain's wishes soon.

    Back in Flotsam

    The Witcher 2 Xbox 360

    Geralt returns to Flotsam, where he picks up on a previous request from a portly man named Ziggy. This guy manages fighters in the local underground fight club, but he hasn't had much luck lately. Geralt agrees to fight for him, and we knock out a duo of opponents.

    Next a shady character tries to pay us to throw the fight. My Geralt is heroic though, so I decline to betray Ziggy and go on to win the final round. Without my say so, Geralt turns down Ziggy's offer to celebrate with booze and women – Ziggy can screw enough for the both of them, he says jovially.

    Vernon Roche finally catches up with Geralt and brings him along on a mission. Loredo, the commandant of Flotsam who helped Geralt save Dandelion and Zoltan last week, has apparently become too powerful for Roche's liking. In addition to troops, he owns a ballista, an extremely powerful canon-like weapon.

    Roche wants to battle everyone near the ballista in order to destroy it. But Geralt prefers to avoid unnecessary loss of life, so he offers to sabotage the ballista himself. To do this, Geralt must first distract the guard closest to the weapon.

    The Witcher 2 Xbox 360

    A nearby prostitute will offer the guard her services, but only if Geralt first humiliates a pair of soldiers who stiffed her (zing!) by defeating them at arm wrestling. Having wrestled the soldiers, our prostitute friend escorts the ballista guard into the bushes. Geralt sabotages the weapon, and a good time is had by all.

    We now attempt to sneak into Loredo's residence, but get captured instead. Luckily, he is not hostile towards Geralt at all. He wants to know why Geralt is snooping around Flotsam. We tell him the truth: Geralt seeks the Scoia'tael and the assassin who helped them kill King Foltest.

    Loredo wants to help Geralt stop the Scoia'tael, but he expects Geralt to leave Roche behind. Loredo doesn't trust Roche because he perceives him as being too bloodthirsty and impulsive. Loredo might be not be eager to trust others, but he cares deeply about the safety of his town. Geralt agrees to fight the Scoia'tael with Loredo, for now.

    Geralt also cautions Loredo that the local non-humans should be treated better. And Loredo agrees to an extent, but doesn't promise sweeping change. He does at least make the point that Iorveth and the Scoia'tael need to be destroyed before humans and non-humans can truly trust each other.

    Loredo still believes that Geralt's friend Zoltan has been in contact with Iorveth lately. But before he'll reveal how he knows this or what his plan for catching Iorveth is, Loredo requires that Geralt defeat the kayran. Dandelion and Zoltan will even receive an official pardon. Good thing Geralt planned to kill the monster anyway!

    The Witcher 2 Xbox 360

    Finally, Geralt leaves Loredo's residence and resumes his hunt for the kayran.

    Now you're ready for the next chapter of our epic Witcher 2 playthrough!

    How to watch Twitch livestreams

    We'll be streaming The Witcher 2 for 90 minutes tonight, starting at 8pm Central (9pm Eastern, 6pm Pacific).

    What's the best way to experience Twitch? The Twitch website on your PC or Mac web browser. If you don't have or prefer not to use a computer, you can get the Xbox One, Playstation 4, or Xbox 360 Twitch apps and watch from the comfort of your couch. Android and iOS both have official and unofficial Twitch apps to choose from as well.

    On Windows Phone, you'll have to grab an unofficial app. Check out our unofficial Twitch app roundup for an in-depth look at five popular apps and their features.

    My recommendation is Unstream. It has far more features than competing apps, such as the ability to see a list of users participating in the stream chat. You can even add our channel directly from within the app! Just search for Eastxtwitch, select the channel to view our profile, and then select Follow from the pop-up menu at the bottom.

    The Witcher 2 Xbox 360

    Streaming schedule

    Want to know what's next for Windows Central's weekly Twitch streaming contests? Here's our upcoming schedule:

    • Thursday, February 26: ScreamRide from Frontier and Microsoft
    • Saturday, February 28: Asphalt 8 (Windows 8) from Gameloft. Guest cohost: "Gameloft" Ryan!
    • Saturday, March 7: Order & Chaos Online (Windows 8) from Gameloft. Guest cohost: "Gameloft" Ryan!

    In addition to our Saturday contest streams, we also livestream a variety of different games throughout the week. These streams don't have contests, but they still offer a great chance to see more exciting games while enjoying our live commentary and stream chat.

    • Mondays: Playstation Vita games! See what the other side gets to play.
    • Tuesdays: The Witcher 2 for Xbox 360. Catch up on The Witcher saga before The Witcher 3 launches in May!
    • Wednesdays: Xbox One games. This Wednesday is Strider history night, featuring Strider 1 and 2 plus Strider for Xbox One!
    • Thursdays: Dragon Age: Inquisition! Game selected and funded by our excellent stream viewers.

    We hope you'll tune in as often as you can! Set a recurring alarm on your phone so you'll always know when it's time for the stream to start.

    Thanks to tonight's cohosts Xero and Tylerh1701 and our Twitch stream moderators for keeping the stream friendly!


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    Get a triple dose of Strider during Strider History Night tonight on Twitch

    Back in December, Windows Central streamed a downloadable Xbox and Windows game from Capcom called Strider. The game became one of my favorites of 2014 thanks to its sleek style, fast pace, and rewarding sense of exploration. We've been wanting to come back to Strider on the stream ever since, and at last we're doing just that.

    Why just play the newest Strider though? Last year's Strider is actually the latest in a long-running series. Seeing as how many readers and viewers probably haven't played the previous games, we've decided to turn back the clock a bit. Tonight we're playing the original Strider, Strider 2, and Strider (2014) all in one historic Twitch stream. Join us to see why the series is so beloved with hardcore gamers and have a blast chatting with the Windows Central crowd!

    To tune in during the livestream, follow me on Twitch.tv/Eastxtwitch and watch along at 8pm Central (9pm Eastern, 6pm Pacific). You can also watch the stream right here live or after the fact.

    Watch live video from EastXTwitch on www.twitch.tv

    Tip: If watching the stream in another window, close this one to avoid audio echoes.

    Strider 1, 2, and 2014

    Capcom released an arcade game called Strider in 1989. The game impressed with its flashy sword-based combat, wall climbing and no-gravity sections, and huge mechanical bosses. The next year, Capcom created a completely original Strider game for the 8-bit NES. The NES game starred the same character, Strider Hiryu, who later appeared in the Marvel vs.Capcom series.

    Strider wouldn't see an official follow-up until 1999 with the arcade and Playstation One release of Strider 2. The sequel played much like the original, with the addition of new moves like double-jumping and a Boost skill that lets Hiryu fire projectiles from his sword. The characters still existed as 2D sprites, but the backgrounds became 3D – for better or worse.

    Strider Xbox One

    We'll be playing Strider 1 and 2 in their entirety (which shouldn't take too long) before moving on to the newest game in the series.

    In 2014, developer Double Helix teamed up with Capcom to make an all-new Strider for Xbox One and 360, as well as other platforms. The new Strider combines elements from the arcade and NES games (plus Strider 2) into a single action-packed Metroidvania-style platformer. With super-fast gameplay, wonderful music, and tons of futuristic areas to explore, Strider is a fantastic modern take on the classic series.

    The Stream

    Strider Xbox One

    We'll be streaming Strider, Strider 2, and Strider (2014) for at least two hours tonight, starting at 8pm Central (9pm Eastern, 6pm Pacific).

    To join us, please follow me at Twitch.tv/Eastxtwitch and tune in during the stream. You can watch the stream right here in this post, but you'll need to watch from the Twitch website or a separate app to participate in our always delightful stream chat.

    What's the best way to experience Twitch? The Twitch website on your PC or Mac web browser. If you don't have or prefer not to use a computer, you can get the Xbox One, Playstation 4, or Xbox 360 Twitch apps and watch from the comfort of your couch. Android and iOS both have official and unofficial Twitch apps to choose from as well.

    On Windows Phone, you'll have to grab an unofficial app. My recommendation is Unstream. It has far more features than competing apps, such as the ability to see a list of users participating in the stream chat. You can even add our channel directly from within the app! Just search for Eastxtwitch, select the channel to view our profile, and then select Follow from the pop-up menu at the bottom.

    I'll be available for a few minutes before and after the stream if you have any questions or just want to say hi.

    Streaming schedule

    Strider Xbox One

    Want to know what's next for Windows Central's weekly Twitch streaming contests? Here's our upcoming contest schedule. The stream always starts at the same time: 8pm Central (9pm Eastern, 6pm Pacific).

    • Thursday, February 26: ScreamRide from Frontier and Microsoft
    • Saturday, February 28: Asphalt 8 (Windows 8) from Gameloft. Guest cohost: "Gameloft" Ryan!
    • Saturday, March 7: Order & Chaos Online (Windows 8) from Gameloft. Guest cohost: "Gameloft" Ryan!

    In addition to our Saturday contest streams, we also livestream a variety of different games throughout the week. These streams don't have contests, but they still offer a great chance to see more exciting games while enjoying our live commentary and stream chat.

    • Mondays: Playstation Vita games! See what the other side gets to play.
    • Tuesdays: The Witcher 2 for Xbox 360. Catch up on The Witcher saga before The Witcher 3 launches in May!
    • Wednesdays: Xbox One games. This Wednesday is Strider history night, featuring Strider 1 and 2 plus Strider for Xbox One!
    • Thursdays: Dragon Age: Inquisition! Game selected and funded by our excellent stream viewers.

    We hope you'll tune in as often as you can! Set a recurring alarm on your phone so you'll always know when it's time for the stream to start.

    Thanks to our Twitch stream moderators KalelCanFly and DerekDoesIt (who goes by isi mcf here at Windows Central) for keeping our streams clean and stress-free!


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    Furious 7

    Fans of Forza Horizon 2, the recent open-world racing game for the Xbox One and Xbox 360, will get to download a stand alone expansion on March 27 that ties into the very popular Fast and Furious movie franchise. The expansion will be free to download until April 10, after which it will cost $10.

    The expansion takes place before the events of Furious 7, the next entry in the movie series that will be released in theaters April 3. The expansion will feature all of the cars from the films, even with their customization and scratches. The Associated Press says:

    "The game will include such "Furious 7" rides as a 1998 Toyota Supra, 1970 Plymouth Road Runner, 2012 Nissan GT-R, 1970 Plymouth Cuda, 2013 Jeep Wrangler, 2014 Maserati Ghibli S and 2015 Dodge Charger.

    Alan Hartman, Microsoft's studio head at Forza's main developer Turn 10 Studios, says this collaboration between the developer and the filmmakers behind the Fast and Furious series is a bit of a "grand experiment". He added, "I hope what we're doing here is a model for what we do in the future. It's been a great relationship, and I don't want to end it after this, so we'll see what's possible in the future."

    Source: AP on ABCNews.com


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    NBA Live 15 on Xbox One

    Members of EA Access, the Xbox One-exclusive game subscription service, can now play the full version of NBA Live 15. In addition, EA Access members will be able to play a trial version of Battlefield Hardline starting on March 12.

    NBA Live 15 becomes the eighth full game from publisher Electronic Arts that is available for EA Access subscribers for the price of $4.99 a month or $29.99 a year. The other games are EA SPORTS UFC, Battlefield 4, Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare, Need For Speed Rivals, Madden NFL 25, FIFA 14, and Peggle 2.

    Battlefield Hardline

    EA Access members will be able to play a free 10-hour trial version of Battlefield Hardline starting March 12. The trial contains both single and multiplayer modes and any progress made in the freebie can be carried over to the full version of the game when it's released on March 17. Subscribing to EA Access also gives members a 10% discount when paying for full games, including Battlefield Hardline.

    Source: EA Access blog, Battlefield Hardline blog


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    Rayman Legends, Tomb Raider, and BioShock Infinite are the Games of Gold for March

    Microsoft has announced the Games with Gold for March on the Xbox One and Xbox 360. On the Xbox One, Gold subscribers will be able to grab Rayman: Legends for free, while on the Xbox 360, they'll have access to Tomb Raider and BioShock Infinite.

    Rayman Legends is a platformer from Ubisoft. Built using the UbiArt Framework, Legends features branching levels and local co-op for up to four players. The game normally costs $39.99, and will be available for free Xbox Live Gold members for the entire month of March.

    On the Xbox 360, Gold members will be able to download 2013's Tomb Raider for free from March 1-15. Normally $19.99, Tomb Raider is a third-person action game that serves as a reboot for the classic franchise.

    If first-person action is more your speed, you'll want to check out the Xbox Store from March 16-31, when BioShock Infinite will be available for free to Gold subscribers. Set in the flying city of Columbia, BioShock is the strange, mind-bending, and violent story of your quest to rescue the mysterious Elizabeth.

    Microsoft also announced that April will see double Games with Gold. Xbox One owners will have the opportunity to download two games that month, while Xbox 360 owners will be presented with four. No announcements were made as to what these games will be.

    Source: Microsoft


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    Rocksteady's critically acclaimed Batman: Arkham series is coming to a close this year with Batman: Arkham Knight. The latest trailer for the game offers a glimpse at the multitude of villains that The Dark Knight has to go up against, including Two-Face, The Penguin, the Riddler, the Arkham Knight, Harley Quinn, Poison Ivy and Scarecrow.

    Batman: Arkham Knight will be available on the Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC on June 2. How many of you are interested in picking up the game once it launches?

    Source: YouTube (Batman Arkham)


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    Fable Legends

    Lionhead Studios has announced that Fable Legends, the upcoming multiplayer game for Xbox One and Windows 10, will be free-to-play. The studio explains that everything will be balanced to ensure those who opt not to purchase anything in-game will be able to be just as strong as those who invest in their characters. They want you to have fun.

    The team behind the title will be sticking to three commitments:

    • Open: you can play to the end without spending a penny.
    • Fair: everything affecting gameplay can be earned by playing the game.
    • Generous: continuous stream of updates with new quests for players to enjoy.

    So how exactly will free-to-play work in Fable Legends? The team will deploy silver, the in-game currency everyone will earn through playing as a villain or heroes. This currency can be used to purchase things to make your characters and creators more powerful. Gold is the premium currency, which can be used to purchase many items also available for silver, and can only be obtained by investing real money.

    The announcement also went into some detail about hero rotation, which will include four heroes that can be played for free. Silver or gold can be used to unlock heroes and progress is saved, even if you only play them when they're free. Loot can be obtained through playing the game, but is also available for silver and gold. A variety of outfits can only be bought with gold.

    In Fable Legends, you'll be able to enjoy and play the game for free, but if you want to get ahead without investing too much time, or wish for some advanced customisation options you'll need to cough up some money. Fable Legends will be released later this year.

    Source: Lionhead Studios


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    The Microsoft Store website is the latest outlet where Xbox One and Xbox 360 owners can purchase a 12-month Xbox Live Gold membership for just $39.99. It's a $20 reduction from its normal $59.99 price tag.

    The website is offering options to purchase the Xbox Live Gold membership via a physical card or with a digital code that is emailed immediately. Purchasing the 12-month option at this price is almost a no-brainer, since you need Xbox Live Gold to play games online with friends on both Xbox consoles. It also offers benefits such as discounts on digital Xbox games and a selection of free games every month. During March, an Xbox Live Gold membership will include downloading Rayman Legends on the Xbox One for free, along with Tomb Raider and BioShock Infinite for the Xbox 360.

    Source: Microsoft Store


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    Watch our live ScreamRide preview tonight on Twitch for fun and prizes

    Everyone knows that Windows Central loves to stream games via Twitch, and you probably even know that we give out prizes during a lot of our streams. Sometimes we get the special opportunity to stream big games before they have been released, including Forza Horizon 2, Sunset Overdrive, and Halo: the Master Chief Collection.

    This is one of those times! Tonight, we'll be streaming the full Xbox One version of ScreamRide from Microsoft Studios and Frontier. Not the demo, mind you, but the full game! ScreamRide is an Xbox One and 360 exclusive that doesn't come out until March. This is the perfect chance to see exactly what the real game will be like and decide whether to preorder.

    Update: The stream has ended. Read on for my impressions, the full video replay, and our contest winners!


    Watch live video from EastXTwitch on Twitch

    ScreamRide

    ScreamRide is a spiritual successor to both Roller Coaster Tycoon and Thrillville. Players will build a theme park filled with gigantic rollercoasters and then ride along to see how well they do!

    The campaign consists of three modes:

    • ScreamRider: Ride a futuristic rollercoaster and try to score as well as you can. Players control acceleration and brakes, as well as the direction the riders lean in the car (which can help it to stay on track). Correctly timing a button press in Turbo zones fills up your Turbo meter, which you can then unleash for a big speed bonus. 
    • Demolition Expert: Instead of roller coasters, this mode involves aiming rider-filled projectiles at buildings and screens and trying to destroy them all. Sort of a 3D physics puzzle with impressive environmental destruction. 
    • Engineer: Each level presents an unfinished coaster for you to complete. Simply lay pieces down and add to them as you like. You can autocomplete pieces to speed things along. Once the track is done, finish it off by watching riders test it out. 

    ScreamRide also boasts a full Sandbox mode in which players design the coaster of their dreams. Levels are shareable online, so this is going to be a dream game for roller coaster and simulation fans!

    ScreamRide for Xbox One

    Tonight we'll be streaming as much of the following content as we can squeeze in:

    • ScreamRider: Series 1 (Populous Labs, levels 1-4), Series 2 (Falls Research, levels 5-7), Series 3 (Beldurrean Laku, levels 8-10) 
    • Demolition Expert: Series 1 (Populous Labs, levels 1-4), Series 2 (Falls Research, levels 5-7), Series 3 (Beldurrean Laku, levels 8-10) 
    • Engineer: Series 1 (Populous Labs, levels 1-4), Series 2 (Falls Research, levels 5-7), Series 3 (Beldurrean Laku, levels 8-10) 

    Watch along for the ride of your life, complete with narration from your Windows Central hosts and the always entertaining chat of our excellent Twitch crowd. ScreamRide launches on March 3, but you can preorder now from Amazon and Xbox.com.

    ScreamRide for Xbox One

    The Contest

    We'll be streaming ScreamRide for at least two hours tonight, starting at 8pm Central (9pm Eastern, 6pm Pacific). During that time, we'll be giving out a total of 8 prize codes:

    • 6 Xbox/Microsoft gift cards (can be spent on Xbox or mobile Windows content) 
    • 2 Xbox Live Gold 3-month subscriptions 

    To enter, just follow me at Twitch.tv/Eastxtwitch (making sure to enable email notifications!) and tune in during the stream. You can watch the stream right here in this post, but you need to actually participate in the stream chat to have a chance at winning. We'll deliver codes to the winners via Twitch message (PM) during the stream. No code begging!

    I'll be available for a few minutes before and after the stream if you have any questions or just want to say hi. If you enjoy the stream, be sure to check our schedule and come back for more!

    ScreamRide for Xbox One

    How to watch Twitch livestreams

    What's the best way to experience Twitch? The Twitch website on your PC or Mac web browser. If you don't have or prefer not to use a computer, you can get the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, or Xbox 360 Twitch apps and watch from the comfort of your couch. Android and iOS both have official and unofficial Twitch apps to choose from as well.

    On Windows Phone, you'll have to grab an unofficial app. My recommendation is Unstream. It has far more features than competing apps, such as the ability to see a list of users participating in the stream chat. You can even add our channel directly from within the app! Just search for Eastxtwitch, select the channel to view our profile, and then select Follow from the pop-up menu at the bottom.

    ScreamRide for Xbox One

    Streaming schedule

    Want to know what's next for Windows Central's weekly Twitch streaming contests? Here's our upcoming schedule. The stream always starts at the same time: 8pm Central (9pm Eastern, 6pm Pacific).

    • Saturday, February 28: Asphalt 8 (Windows 8) from Gameloft. Guest cohost: "Gameloft" Ryan!
    • Saturday, March 7: Order & Chaos Online (Windows 8) from Gameloft. Guest cohost: "Gameloft" Ryan!

    In addition to our Saturday contest streams, we also livestream a variety of different games throughout the week. These streams don't have contests, but they still offer a great chance to see more exciting games while enjoying our live commentary and stream chat.

    • Mondays: PlayStation Vita games! See what the other side gets to play.
    • Tuesdays:The Witcher 2 for Xbox 360. Catch up on The Witcher saga before The Witcher 3 launches in May!
    • Wednesdays: Xbox One games. We'll announce these games on the site every Wednesday.
    • Thursdays:Dragon Age: Inquisition for Xbox One. Chosen by our loyal viewers!

    We hope you'll tune in as often as you can! Set a recurring alarm on your phone so you'll always know when it's time for the stream to start.

    ScreamRide for Xbox One

    Winners

    The following people had a scream when they won some prizes!

    Xbox Live Gold 3-month subscriptions

    • Ssrjazz
    • Cmuchippewa

    Xbox gift cards

    • Royalbob5
    • Titaniumdanny
    • Pastormtitus
    • Lightcycle45
    • Mongbox
    • Jamaican117

    Thanks to Mobile Nations for providing tonight's prizes. Thanks also to our Twitch stream moderators for keeping the peace and giving away the prizes!


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    Xbox One

    Microsoft will launch official support for the Xbox One console on Reddit beginning on Monday, March 2. Microsoft employees will answer support questions in a manner similar to how they respond on their Xbox Support Twitter account.

    In a post on Reddit earlier this week, the Xbox Support rep stated:

    "Hey everyone, glad to be able to branch out and offer support for our awesome community in more and more places. Our team is small but we'll be doing our best to respond to [Tech] threads and provide support here on reddit.

    "Just some business stuff: Hours of Operation - We'll be posting replies between the hours of 9-5 PST every Monday - Friday. We will try our best to answer every thread and catch up on weekend threads when we kick off on Mondays."

    This shows that Microsoft is aware that the Xbox One community has expanded to more outlets and hopefully means we can expect better support for the console in the future.

    Source: Xbox One on Reddit