Starting in just a few days, Xbox Live Gold subscribers will be able to grab a new set of free games for the Xbox 360 and Xbox One as part of the Games with Gold promotion. Plus, don't forget to grab the remaining free games for December while there's still time left.
Starting January 1, 2015, Xbox Owners can pick up D4: Dark Dreams Don't Die, a critically acclaimed title that normally costs $14.99. According to Microsoft, D4 is an indie adventure in which "a time traveling detective has to solve his wife's murder before he can prevent it. You use his supernatural ability to 'dive' into the world of the living past by touching artifacts called 'mementos' to find out the truth behind his wife's death.
If you're a new Xbox One user—congratulations—or simply forgot, December's free games are still available through December 31. And there are actually two this month!
Worms Battleground "brings friends and families together in the noble pursuit of self‐improvement, world domination, and exploding sheep. Featuring high definition 3D visuals, the latest in the Worms franchise has exciting additions to improve the single player experience, and more of everything a Worms fan could want." It's normally $24.99.
Volgarr resembles the classic sideway scrollers from years past with a "hardcore action experience that pulls no punches, simple controls, high challenge, and meticulous design - combined with hand-made pixel animation, an epic soundtrack, and buckets of blood." It actually looks pretty great. Plus, it's normally $9.99.
Because it is the far more established platform, Xbox 360 gets more free games each month (usually two) and they are often (but not always) former retail blockbusters. The caveat? Each game is typically only available for half the month, with one available from the first to the 15th, and the other made available for free for the remainder of the month.
From January 1 to 15, Xbox 360 users can grab MX vs. ATV Alive (normally $14.99) for free. This racing title features motocross, supercross, and off-road freestyle events with "tons of options for getting your wheels in the dirt. You can race on dirt bikes or on the titular four-wheel ATVs, each with their own physical feel and control style. And, when you're done breaking all the records that the A.I. has set, you can race against your friends and spray mud all over their television sets in your wake (virtually, of course)."
From January 16 to 31, Xbox 360 users can pick up The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings for free, and this game is normally $29.99. This is a "massive, combat and story-filled RPG [that s] filled with backstory, deep characters, and plenty of side-quests that will educate you on the nature of the world and the goings-on therein. More importantly, though, The Witcher 2 is an incredibly in-depth game, offering potentially hundreds of hours of gameplay, oodles of character customization options, and countless weapons, armor pieces, and other loot."
And as with the Xbox One, don't forget you can still snag December's second free Games with Gold offering, SSX, which I distinctly remember playing for hours and hours with my son. (I'm download it as I write this, actually.) SSX is normally $19.99.
One final tip
And while I'm being all tippy, don't forget that you don't actually need to own an Xbox 360 or Xbox One console to add these free games to your collection. You can just click the links above, step through the payment process (don't worry, the prices are "free" in each case), and then if you do later get one of these consoles, you'll have the makings of a great game library already. You can download and install the game as you wish.
Have some fun in 2015. It's free.