January’s Free Games: Who Won?

In the inaugural edition of our monthly free games review, we take a look at who gave new console owners more of an incentive to buy online play, PlayStation or Microsoft.

Check out a quick review of the current and legacy generation games below and read which console owners we think are the winners.

Current Generation, PlayStation 4:

Grim Fandango Remastered

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Grim Fandango was originally released in 1998 and follows Manny Calavera, the travel agent of the dead. The puzzle-adventure game has been refinished in high definition for the PS4 and PS Vita and has received praise from most reviewers.

Hardware: Rivals

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One of the first ever online games for the PS2, Hardware: Online Arena was all about destroying vehicles through the use of missiles, machine guns and lasers.

Hardware: Rivals is a successor to that, but again only offers online multiplayer without a split screen option. The game is set to launch January 5, though the beta which launched in September didn’t get a whole lot of love.

Xbox One:

Killer Instinct: Season 1 Ultra Edition

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An instant classic, Killer Instinct stuck true to the brand and delivered the kind of fighting game every Killer Instinct fan was hoping for. This version includes eight extra characters, eight customers and 16 accessory packs along with the original Killer Instinct game, making this download worth it alone.

IGN rated Killer Instinct 8.4 when it was released nearly two years ago in November 2013.



This indie 3D, Streets-of-Rage-esque platform fighter developed by Rimlight Studios offers single player and co-op modes that sets the characters out against hordes of enemies.

Deadly weapons and powerful combos will aid the main characters, Mike and Captain Dorian, on their journey to defend the universe from a mad doctor trying to turn every remaining creature into followers of his.

Legacy Generation, PlayStation 3:

Dragon Age: Origins

A 9 out of 10 on IGN.com, Dragon Age: Origins is the first game in the Dragon Age series and was widely acclaimed. The other free PS3 game, Medal of Honor Warfighter, was basically the complete opposite as it was panned by most critics.

Xbox 360:

DiRT Showdown

Do you love off-road racing? Then you’ll probably dig DiRT Showdown, or pretty much any other games in the DiRT series.

Deus Ex: Human Revolution is the saving grace of last generation’s freebies on Xbox. The prequel to the popular 2000 original and is a must-play for any fan of first-person stealth games. Like Dragon Age: Origins, IGN also gave Deus Ex: Human Revolution a 9.0.

PlayStation Plus also includes Nihilumbra, Legends of War Patton and Grim Fandango Remastered for the PS Vita.

The winner of January’s free games: Xbox, hands down.

It’s pretty clear that Microsoft wanted to woo new console owners with a strong first month of Xbox Games With Gold while PlayStation remained on track with a rather mediocre month.

Yes, Grim Fandango Remastered is a great game for anyone who doesn’t own it already, but most fans of the original likely already bought this game. Killer Instinct, however, was one of the first fighting games on the Xbox One meaning it might not be well known to new console owners but still holds up strongly.

The biggest plus, of course, is the Xbox 360 games are backwards compatible and playable on the Xbox One. I don’t have to fire up both consoles to enjoy all four games, whereas I need to do that with the PS4.

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