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100K Achievements photo
100K Achievements

Good lord, there are 100,000 Achievements


2.79 percent of them are unobtainable
Jul 31
// Jordan Devore
According to TrueAchievements, 100,000 Achievements exist across Xbox 360, Xbox One, Windows, and other supported platforms. Think of all that sweet, sweet Gamerscore! Scale aside, I was most interested to hear what the top f...
Rare Replay photo
Rare Replay

Is 30 games in Rare Replay not enough for you?


What would you like to see added?
Jul 30
// Vikki Blake
Although Rare is packaging 30 of its biggest games together with the release of Rare Replay, turns out 30 retro Rare games might not be enough. During a special Twitch livestream, Rare's James Thomas said that whittling ...

Windows 10 is now available, these are the gaming features you might care about

Jul 29 // Jed Whitaker
The start menu is back and why are we celebrating this!? A big complaint about Windows 8 was the removal of the basic start menu for the Metro system with live tiles, tailor made for touch screen devices. As most of us probably still use Windows with a mouse and keyboard it wasn't a great solution. It had some apps running in basically their own full screen only windows, thus defeating the purpose of... you know... windows. Thankfully Windows 10 fixes this by combining the old school easy-to-use start menu with the flash and flair of live tiles from Windows 8 Metro start menu. The apps now launch in their own resizable windows instead of full screen only, and plenty of them can be downloaded from the Windows Store for free. Windows Store for those of you who haven't heard of Steam The Windows Store includes plenty of games you can play with your Xbox Live friends and even earn Achievements, but most of them are just ports of casual mobile or Facebook-style games. However, you can find Project Spark on the Windows Store, which runs far better on PC than Xbox One. In the future you can look forward to the sexy free-to-play Gigantic which I quite liked at PAX East this year. Halo's Cortana is the new voice assistant you'll most likely ignore Cortana is to Windows as Siri is to iOS devices, that is to say she is a personal assistant that can be used via text or voice. Cortana is voiced by Jen Taylor, just like in the Halo series, and can do all kinds of tasks such as scheduling appointments, setting reminders, opening apps, and even chatting about Halo and Master Chief. I honestly haven't used Cortana too much but I don't really dig voice assistants, as they don't always seem to understand what I'm saying; even Cortana had trouble understanding me while using my professional grade microphone. Even on my iPhone I've literally only used Siri to call Buffalo Wild Wings instead of adding them to my contact list because I'm too lazy. Voice assistants seem more geared towards business than common folk like me. The Xbox app with game streaming from Xbox One is actually decent but lacks multitasking The Xbox app is free on Windows 10 and gives you access to all your friends, messages, achievements, clips and even allows you to stream games from  your Xbox One. Streaming from the Xbox One requires an Xbox controller (360 or One) be connected to the system which at time of writing can only be done via USB, though a wireless dongle is coming. The Xbox app also allows you to record gameplay and take screenshots of any game on your PC, whether playing on Xbox or not via a handy keyboard shortcut (Win + G) and pop-up toolbar. Game streaming works about as well as you'd imagine. I just played a match of Halo 2's SWAT -- a game mode requiring precision aiming due to requiring headshots for kills -- in which I came in the middle of the pack with over ten kills. There was a smidgen of noticeable lag at one point, but not enough to really affect the gameplay enough to matter. Video quality-wise there was a bit of artifacting but only if I really looked for it, even with both my desktop and Xbox One running on wired connections. Also the "Xbox record that" voice command won't work during streaming, so you'll have to use Xbox apps keyboard shortcut to record directly onto your PC that way. Supposedly better performance out of your current graphics card with DirectX 12 To save you all the geeky technical talk just know that DirectX 12 allows many graphics cards to have majorly increased performance in comparison to previous versions, meaning you might be able to play at higher resolutions with better settings on your current setup. For more details check out this informative video from AMD.  I personally haven't seen much real world increase in graphical performance, but I'm running on an Nvidia GTX 980 that could already max out all the games I was playing on Windows 8 previously. Perhaps you'll see some gains? Minecraft: Windows 10 beta is a thing that exists If you are one of those people who must have every version of Minecraft possible then good news, you can get the Windows 10 beta for free if you already own a PC copy of the game. Details on how to get the beta are at the Mojang site. I just attempted to do it and it is only allowing me to download the trial version, so your results may vary. This version of Minecraft allows you to play with up to seven of your Xbox Live friends at once and eventually even play with mobile players. I guess that is probably exciting for someone.  -- Windows 10 has plenty of other new features, most of which just let you do what you'd normally do more efficiently such as new ways to snap windows, a new task view, automatic updates, and the Microsoft Edge web browser that is probably the fastest browser currently on the market. Edge doesn't currently support extensions, which is keeping me from switching from Google Chrome at the moment. I've been using Windows 10 on my main system for quite a while now with no issues and with all my games and applications working as intended. Windows 10 is easily the best operating system I've ever used as it allows me to play, work, and relax more efficiently and effectively. It has been worthwhile for me.
Best Windows yet? photo
Pizzazz, pizzazz, Windows 10 is here
Windows 10 is now officially available, and those who have Windows 7 or 8 can upgrade for free, which is a pretty good price for what I consider the best version of Windows yet. Windows 10 packs a bunch of new features, including some nice extras for Xbox One owners. Here is an overview of new features you might care about as someone who plays games.

The Coalition photo
The Coalition

Gears of War 4 dev canceling its original game for Gears a 'no-brainer'


Job security, I guess
Jul 29
// Steven Hansen
After Microsoft acquired the Gears of War rights, Black Tusk studio was doomed. It was rebranded as The Coalition, a less discrete and more boring name, and will be to Gears of War what 343 is to Halo. Black Tusk had been wo...
Rare Replay photo
Rare Replay

What's your favorite game from Rare Replay?


You have 30 choices
Jul 29
// Chris Carter
I got my hands on Rare Replay, and I've been playing it quite a bit for our review next week. It's crazy how addicting Blast Corps is, as I just completed it earlier this year on my N64, and was enticed to beat it y...
Xbox One photo
Xbox One

Microsoft plans to integrate PC to Xbox streaming


They already announced Xbox to PC
Jul 29
// Mike Cosimano
In an interview with The Verge, Xbox head Phil Spencer spoke to the possibility of streaming games from your PC to your Xbox One. The just-launched Windows 10 comes packaged with Xbox One to PC streaming functionali...
Free Xbox games photo
Free Xbox games

Ground Zeroes, Metro series free with Xbox Live Gold soon


Solid showing
Jul 28
// Jordan Devore
The Games with Gold lineup for August looks good. It's probably not enough to convince me to renew my lapsed Xbox Live Gold membership, but I seriously considered it for a minute there. On Xbox One, Metal Gear Solid V: Ground...
Xbox One photo
Xbox One

The upcoming Xbox One dashboard looks totally different


I hope this is a good thing
Jul 25
// Jed Whitaker
The Xbox One dashboard is getting a major revision this holiday season and it is shaping up to be...something.  A completely new guide (think popup dashboard from the Xbox 360) is being added that slides in over games ve...
Gears of War photo
Gears of War

Gears of War has more weapon skins to sell us


You can pre-load the game on Xbox One
Jul 23
// Jordan Devore
I don't think I ever bought a weapon skin for Gears of War 3, but plenty of folks did. Good job, old me -- you were prone to buying stuff like that in those days but you held strong. Anyway, the skins are back for Gears of Wa...
Microsoft photo
Microsoft

Xbox revenue up 27 percent, says Microsoft


Thanks to price drops and first-party games
Jul 22
// Vikki Blake
Microsoft has confirmed that it's total Xbox revenue grew 27 percent in the fourth quarter of its fiscal year. Microsoft's Q4 financial report chiefly attributed the rise to first-party games and Xbox Live revenue, although s...
Phantom Dust Lives photo
Phantom Dust Lives

Xbox boss: Microsoft still committed to Phantom Dust


It won't be at gamescom
Jul 21
// Jed Whitaker
When asked if Phantom Dust would be at gamescom next month in Germany, head of Xbox Phil Spencer responded by saying that it would not but Microsoft is still committed to the game.  This news comes after Microsoft a...
Xbox One bundle photo
Xbox One bundle

This Xbox One bundle has Madden NFL 16 and a year of EA Access


Good head start
Jul 20
// Jordan Devore
Microsoft is rolling out another Xbox One bundle on August 18, 2015 and if you're into sports games, it's worth a look. For $399, it comes with a 1TB hard drive, Madden NFL 16, and a year subscription to EA Access. The latter...
Halo 5: Guardians photo
Halo 5: Guardians

Exchange your Halo 5 Guardians CE digital code for a physical disc


Available at no extra cost
Jul 20
// Vikki Blake
If you fancied picking up the Halo 5: Guardians Limited Collector’s Edition but were put off by the digital code part, 343 industries has "heard the feedback". "I’d like to touch on a few items, the first of ...
NPD photo
NPD

June NPD: Batman and PS4 lead the way


Splatoon remains at number five
Jul 16
// Robert Summa
June's NPD numbers were rather ordinary and predictable. That is, nothing terribly shocking happened. The PlayStation 4 was still the top console and Batman: Arkham Knight led the way for software (with the PS4 version the bi...
Killer Instinct photo
Killer Instinct

Practice Killer Instinct's shadow breakers in your browser


Now this is cool
Jul 16
// Chris Carter
A friend of mine who plays Killer Instinct competitively linked me this gem late last night, and I have say, it's pretty damn awesome. In short, it's a way to practice the timing of breaking shadow linkers in your browse...
Halo photo
Halo

Hail to the Chief: Halo moves past 65 million series sales


That's across ten titles
Jul 13
// Brett Makedonski
Halo is Xbox's flagship franchise and for good reason. Since launching alongside the original Xbox, the Halo series has managed to sell more than 65 million copies. That's some Spartan-like resolve. News of the milestone...
Halo animation photo
Halo animation

First look at Halo: The Fall of Reach - The Animated Series


It's going to show John's arms and legs
Jul 10
// Jordan Devore
Here's a look at Halo: The Fall of Reach – The Animated Series out of San Diego Comic-Con. An adaptation of Eric Nylund's 2001 novel, it will explore the origin of the Master Chief and Blue Team. Considering those same ...
Microsoft photo
Microsoft

Microsoft is skipping TGS this year


It skipped announcements at E3, too
Jul 10
// Chris Carter
To the surprise of no one, Microsoft is skipping out on spending thousands to make an appearance at TGS (Tokyo Game Show) -- taking place from September 17 to September 20 this year. Speaking to Famitsu (translated by Gematsu...
GoW: UE for free photo
GoW: UE for free

Gears of War: Ultimate Edition to come bundled with Xbox One


Curb stomp for the low price of free
Jul 09
// Jed Whitaker
Rod Fergusson, head of The Coalition, announced today at the Gears of War panel at San Diego Comic-Con that the base model of Xbox One will come bundled with Gears of War: Ultimate Edition. The bundle includes a 500GB Xbox On...
HoloLens photo
HoloLens

I'm digging Microsoft's HoloLens more than traditional VR


VR lite, or AR if you will
Jul 09
// Chris Carter
The Microsoft HoloLens Minecraft demonstration at E3 blew me away. While I'm still skeptical that it will actually work as well as it did on-stage in a perfectly tuned environment, this video sure makes it loo...
Executive shade photo
Executive shade

Xbox's Phil Spencer: Executives should play games


Tips his fedora to Sony
Jul 07
// Jed Whitaker
Xbox boss Phil Spencer said "I think our industry is better when more people who made decisions on games play." Basically meaning executives of gaming companies would make better decisions if they themselves were ga...
Xbox branding story photo
Xbox branding story

The origin story of the Xbox's green branding


A cautionary tale about office supplies
Jul 07
// Jordan Devore
Xbox co-creator Seamus Blackley has answered a question I didn't even know I had: Why was the branding green? Speaking to IGN, he explained that it all started with a marker (or lack thereof). "A guy called Horace Luke, when ...
Microsoft photo
Microsoft

Get Groove-y with Microsoft


Microsoft rebrands Xbox Music and Video
Jul 07
// Vikki Blake
Xbox Music has been rebranded to Xbox Groove. "Groove describes what people feel and do with music," says Microsoft, "and is more intuitive for our Windows 10 customers on what they’ll find with the app." The rebra...
Minecraft photo
Minecraft

If you own Minecraft, you get it free on Windows 10


$10 otherwise
Jul 06
// Chris Carter
Because Minecraft doesn't have enough fragmentation already, Mojang has just announced that there will now be a "Windows 10 Edition" of the game that you can buy later this year. If you already own the PC version of Mine...
Telltale's Minecraft photo
Telltale's Minecraft

First look at Telltale's Minecraft: Story Mode


Basically how you'd expect
Jul 04
// Kyle MacGregor
This is a reminder that Minecraft: Story Mode is a real thing that's happening. The episodic adventure game from Telltale Games follows a generic-looking protagonist (portrayed by Patton Oswalt of A Very Harold & Kumar 3...
Xbox photo
Xbox

Ex-Xbox Boss: Red Ring of Death was 'sickening'


'If we don't address this, this brand is dead'
Jul 03
// Vikki Blake
Ex-Xbox boss (and now EA head) Peter Moore has admitted that when he learned about Xbox 360s bricking courtesy of the now infamous red-ring-of-death error, he sat trembling in front of his then-boss Steve Ballmer and said: "i...
Gears of War remaster photo
Gears of War remaster

Expect this stuff to be fixed in Gears of War: Ultimate Edition


Feedback from the beta is in
Jul 02
// Jordan Devore
Gears of War: Ultimate Edition is creeping up on me with that August 25 release date. I missed the beta for this Xbox One remaster, but plenty of you didn't. A million matches were logged in a week and, somehow, a single pers...
Fallout 3 photo
Fallout 3

Bethesda doesn't know when Xbox will make Fallout 3 backwards compatible


Pre-order bonus is the base game
Jul 02
// Brett Makedonski
Yesterday, Fallout 4 went up for pre-order on Xbox.com. Generally, this just means people can plop down money for a game that will release later. But, this circumstance is somewhat unique because Bethesda's offering...
Ultimate Game Sale photo
Ultimate Game Sale

Xbox is gearing up for an imminent Ultimate Game Sale


So maybe you shouldn't buy anything now
Jul 02
// Brett Makedonski
Do you have your eyes set on a particular Xbox game right now, and the digital storefront keeps calling your name and begging you to hit the download button? It might be best to resist temptation a little longer, because the...

Forza Motorsport 6 certainly plans on making a big splash

Jul 02 // Brett Makedonski
Did you think the rabbit hole ended there? Turn 10's not offering water physics just anywhere -- only in the places that it makes sense. An example Cooper gave us was that it never rains in Dubai so players will never see rainfall there. From our understanding, there isn't even the option to set up a custom race with rain on that track. If Turn 10's obsession with water sounds a bit like overkill, well yeah, maybe it is. It got to the point where another journalist and I just said "Rain" to one another whenever we crossed paths for the rest of E3. I attribute it to what I call the "EA Sports Complex." The racing in Forza has been carefully honed over the course of a decade now. Just like EA Sports and its titles such as Madden and FIFA, Turn 10 can afford to focus on the smaller facets of its game in an effort to inch ever closer to realism. We have no real indication how well all this rain will actually turn out. The hands-off demo we saw looked great, but it was obviously a tightly-controlled environment. Notably,Project CARS attempt at rain was where the game was visually at its best, but it also took a significant toll on the Xbox One and caused gameplay issues. If anyone has the best chance of skirting that problem, it's Turn 10 who's a first-party developer and presumably has the full support of Microsoft's resources. If the game isn't optimized well enough to handle all these effects, you'd have to assume they wouldn't be such a priority -- not yet, at least.  Rain usually means gloom for most people in real life. Turn 10's pinning its hopes on rain making for a fun and realistic experience in its video game. After all, who doesn't love speeding through giant puddles? And, all that water should have those cars at their absolute shiniest.
Forza Motorsport 6 photo
Raindrops keep fallin' on my hood
When I looked at my E3 schedule this year and saw I had a Forza Motorsport 6 meeting at the Microsoft booth, I expected they wanted to talk to me about cars. That's the crux of Forza after all: cars racing real...


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