As a reward/incentive to keep up their subscription, Xbox Live Gold members get two free games a month to download for a limited time on both the Xbox One and Xbox 360 . The titles range from older AAA blockbusters and cult indie hits to underrated gems and – very occasionally – a brand new release.
Since November 2015 the two free Xbox 360 games have also been backwards compatible with the Xbox One, meaning owners of Microsoft’s current gen console can effectively get four free games a month.
The games are yours to keep even if you cancel your Xbox Live Gold subscription after downloading them. Just select the ‘Gold’ tab on your Xbox One or Xbox 360. Alternatively, you can use the Xbox website.
Even if you haven’t upgraded to an Xbox One yet, you can still nab those games for free as long as you have an Xbox Live Gold account. Just sign into the Xbox website, head to the title’s listing page and redeem the offer. The game will then appear in the console’s ‘Ready to install’ list if you buy an Xbox One in the future.
Below are the free Xbox Live Games With Gold for January, with links to each game’s listing on the Xbox website. And don’t forget to check out our Xbox deals page for up-to-date console prices.
The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing III: Jan 1 – Jan 15
This third instalment of the Diablo-style action RPG series is newly launching on the Xbox One for free, and continues the adventures of the titular monster slayer – the son of the original Van Helsing from Dracula. Unlock a variety of skills to use and earn loot to make yourself more powerful as you take on hordes of monsters in the fictional country of Borgovia.
Zombi – Jan 16 – Feb 15
A tense first-person horror game, Zombi requires careful combat choices and resource management if you’re to survive among the undead roaming around London. You can also creep about to avoid detection and save ammo if you prefer.
In a neat touch, if your character dies (which can happen with a single zombie bite) they will stay that way, with you taking on the role of another survivor. Your previous character is then resurrected as one of the zombies, and if you manage to find them and take them out you’ll recover all the items you lost.
Tomb Raider Underworld: Jan 1 – Jan 15
Join Lara Croft for more archaeological action as she embarks on a quest to find Thor’s hammer and save the world. Explore creepy temples and caves, solve conundrums and occasionally blast some bad guys in this slice of textbook tomb raiding.
This time around you can dual wield guns to shoot two different targets at once, and you’ll have a trusty motorbike to help with combat and puzzles.
Army of Two: Jan 16 – Jan 31
This third-person shooter feels every inch like an 80s/90s action movie you’d accidentally stumble across on ITV2 at midnight. Take up arms as loudmouth soldiers-for-hire Rios and Salem in a bombastic campaign built around teamwork.
If you’re playing solo you can switch between the two on the fly (the AI takes control of your buddy), with the game’s Aggro mechanic allowing you to draw enemies’ attention with one character and then jump to the other to flank the bad guys and get the drop on them.
Like Michael Bay’s later movies it’s a loud, dumb affair that lacks any self-awareness. But if you can rope in a friend it’s a decent blast if you’re after some mindless fun.