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I guess I just like liking things


Most recent game offered with the program, and the reason I’ve not been getting much sleep lately

The thing I’m really enjoying about the Xbox’s Games With Gold program is the encouragement to try games I wouldn’t normally play. Yes, many of the games that have been offered are games that had demos available, but there’s something about “hey, free game!” that entices me to give it a try that “hey, free demo!” doesn’t. I don’t generally download and play demos of games unless I’m already interested in them, which I think is the exact opposite of what the demo-makers had in mind.

Games With Gold offers two games per month: one for the first half, one for the second half. If you download the game, you own it “forever,” even if you stop being an Xbox Live Gold member, so that means you can download it again in the future if you want. So far of the 19 games made available, the breakdown for me has been:

  • 5 played extensively
  • 3 played briefly and deleted
  • 4 owned/played previously
  • 7 no interest

Combining “played extensively” and “had already played” gives me a 47% of them have been games I liked, and 33% of those were games I didn’t know much about prior to playing them. Furthermore, for two of those games I purchased DLC.

An Xbox Gold membership’s list price is $60, but there are deals frequently, so I usually end up paying about $40 for a year. The GWG program hasn’t been going for quite a year yet, so let’s use $40 for our base price. That brings the price of each game I’ve played extensively down to around $8, and that doesn’t count the other benefits I get from having a Gold membership. I hadn’t run the numbers on that before, but they sound pretty good to me.

There haven’t been any games offered for Xbox One yet, but there’s talk of it happening at some point, and it’ll be very cool when that happens.

I’m not shilling for Microsoft here, just for the record! I just got to thinking about it because I’ve been playing so much Civilization Revolution this week.

Here are the games that have been released so far in the last ten months, broken down by category:

Games I didn’t even download

  • A World of Keflings
  • Defense Grid
  • Gears of War (Tried this one a long time ago but didn’t care for it)
  • Magic: The Gathering – Duels of the Planeswalkers
  • Might & Magic: Clash of Heroes
  • Shoot Many Robots
  • Toy Soldiers: Cold War

Games I downloaded, played, and didn’t like

  • Crackdown (I had played this one a long time ago and didn’t like it, but I didn’t remember why until I tried it again.)
  • Dead Island
  • Dead Rising 2

Games I had already played and enjoyed before they were offered

  • Assassin’s Creed II
  • Halo 3
  • Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light
  • Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six: Vegas

Games I downloaded and played extensively

  • Dead Rising 2: Case Zero (I realize it makes no sense that I played and liked this one but didn’t like Dead Rising 2, but this is the world we’re living in.)
  • Fable III
  • Iron Brigade
  • Sid Meier’s Civilization Revolution
  • Sleeping Dogs


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