4 Games Free to Xbox Live Gold Members in August 2016

A closeup of an Xbox One S.

Xbox One S | Source: Microsoft

Being an Xbox Live Gold subscriber means you get free games each month. The service costs around $60 per year, but the games are worth far more than that, even if you’re only interested in playing a fraction of them. (If you’re a PlayStation owner, check out Sony’s similar service, PlayStation Plus.)

Each month, Microsoft gives away two games apiece for Xbox One and Xbox 360. Thanks to backwards compatibility, you can play all of the Xbox 360 games on your Xbox One, which means Xbox One owners effectively 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 August 2016.

1. Warriors Orochi 3 Ultimate

Platform: Xbox One
Metacritic score: 77
Original price: $60
Available: August 1 – 31

This intense hack-and-slash action game is a bulked-up, remastered edition of a 2012 game for last-gen systems. It puts you in control of a samurai warrior and has you fend off wave after wave of enemies, from armies of swordsmen to packs of wolves. Thankfully, you are a super-powered fighter, with special moves that send out strikes in all directions — which comes in handy when you’re being attacked from all sides. And because this edition includes new story lines, scenarios, and characters, it’s worth downloading even if you’ve already played the original game.

2. WWE 2k16

Platform: Xbox One
Metacritic score: 73
Original price: $40
Available: August 16 – September 15

All you wrestling fans will want to take a look at WWE 2K16, the latest in the yearly franchise famous for body slams, pile drivers, and flying elbows. This year’s model limits the number of reversals you’ll be able to pull off each match, so you can’t annoy other players by reversing all of their moves. It also lets you attack other players during their entrances, which might lose you a friend or two, but is always hilarious.

3. Spelunky

Platform: Xbox 360
Metacritic score: 87
Original price: $20
Available: August 1 – 15

Spelunky is a side-scrolling platformer made up of randomly generated levels, which means no two play-throughs will be exactly the same. The thing is, it’s a long game that takes several hours to complete, so when you die and have to restart from the beginning, it can be disheartening. But for all you lose, you also learn a lot with every play-through. Most people who see Spelunky through to the end spend weeks or months playing before they have a chance to fight the final boss. But by the time you do, no one can say you haven’t earned it.

4. Beyond Good and Evil HD

Platform: Xbox 360
Metacritic score: 84
Original price: $15
Available: August 16 – 31

Here’s a modern classic you may have heard about but might not have played. It’s a unique game that stars Jade, an investigative reporter who’s working on a case about a planet-wide alien conspiracy. She can kick serious butt when the situation dictates, but she’s also known to stop and photograph the fauna when she has a free moment.

The game was originally planned to be the first in a trilogy, but Ubisoft doesn’t seem to be in a hurry to continue it. Beyond Good and Evil 2 is one of a number of games that are taking forever to come out.

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