4 Games Free to Xbox Live Gold Members in January 2016

Being an Xbox Live Gold subscriber means you get free games each month. The service costs around $60 per year, but the games you’ll get are worth far more than that, even if you’re only interested in playing a fraction of them.

Although Microsoft gives away two games each for Xbox One and Xbox 360, you can play all of the Xbox 360 games on Xbox One. Effectively, Xbox One owners get four free games each month instead of two.

It’s also worth noting that even if you don’t have an Xbox One yet, you can redeem your free games either on Xbox.com or your Xbox 360. Then if you buy an Xbox One in the future, you’ll be able to find those games in your account and download them for free.

Without further ado, here are the free Games With Gold for January 2016.

1. Killer Instinct: Season One Ultra Edition

Platform: Xbox One
Metacritic score: 73
Original price: $39.99
Available: January 1 to 31

Fighting game fans will appreciate this one, especially since it retails for nearly the cost of an entire year’s subscription to Xbox Live Gold. Killer Instinct, the classic fighting game from the ‘90s, is back, with much better graphics and more intense gameplay than before. With a heavy focus on combos, this game lets you string together a series of moves into a torrent of pain for your opponent. The only catch is that the person you’re pummeling is always on the lookout for combo-busting opportunities that can quickly turn the tide of the match.

2. Zheros

Platform: Xbox One
Available: January 16 to February 15

Fans of old-school brawlers will want to check this one out. This game plays a lot like a classic Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles beat-‘em-up, with the cartoonish heroes (or zheros, as the case may be) pummeling their way through throngs of robotic baddies in each level. The game is set in a sci-fi future and sports local co-op, so you can bruise the bad guys with your friends. Looks like a fun one to check out, especially for free.

3. DiRT Showdown

Platform: Xbox 360
Metacritic score: 75
Original price: $14.99
Available: January 1 to 15

The DiRT series of racing games is all about spectacle. Rather than delivering a fully realistic racing sim, these games are more focused on jumps, drifts, and crashes. That’s perfect for a certain kind of racing fan, and Showdown doesn’t disappoint. When you play it, be sure to check out the Demolition events, which drop you in an arena with a bunch of other cars for you to bang up and destroy. Sounds like a blast.

4. Deus Ex: Human Revolution

Platform: Xbox 360
Metacritic score: 89
Original price: $14.99
Available: January 16 to 31

The great thing about this futuristic stealth/action RPG is that it’s flexible in a way most other games aren’t. You can tackle missions in a variety of ways, from going in with guns blazing to sneaking around without killing anyone. The more you play, the more points you can pump into upgrades that make you even more efficient at your particular play style. It’s a satisfying game system that meshes seamlessly with the plot’s focus on mechanical augmentation for humans. If you haven’t played this game yet, now’s the perfect time because it has a sequel launching later this year.

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