With June's passing Microsoft is ready to reveal July's Games With Gold, now including The Banner Saga 2 on Xbox One and Rainbow Six Vegas 2 on Xbox 360.
It's a banner month for Microsoft's Xbox Games With Gold in July, a Banner Saga month that is. Microsoft has gone ahead and revealed July's line-up of Xbox Games With Gold titles, once again featuring two titles for Xbox One and two titles for Xbox 360 -- each supporting Xbox One Backward Compatibility. As ever, reception will be mixed due to different tastes, but July does have a good mix of indie titles and popular classics.
Here are Microsoft's Xbox Games With Gold for the month of July 2016:
- The Banner Saga 2 - Xbox One (July 1 - 31)
- Tumblestone - Xbox One (July 16 - August 15)
- Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Vegas 2 - Xbox 360 (July 1 - 15)
- Tron: Evolution - Xbox 360 (July 16-31)
As per the status quo, both Xbox One games will be available for download by Xbox Live subscribers for a full month while the Xbox 360 games will only last for fifteen days apiece. The Banner Saga 2 and Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Vegas 2 will open up for download on July 1, with Tumblestone and Tron: Evolution starting mid-July.
That also means that June's Games With Gold are quickly approaching their expiration date. The Xbox One's Goat Simulator and the Xbox 360's XCOM: Enemy Unknown will disappear after June 30, giving Xbox players less than three days to get their downloads started. The Crew on Xbox One has a bit more leeway, lasting until July 15 before it drops off the market.
As has been common for the Xbox Games With Gold program, diversity in the games line-up is a priority. Microsoft targets a mix of single-player and multiplayer games, casual and traditional, modern and classic. Where The Banner Saga 2 offers a compelling narrative with intimate, painterly visuals and methodical strategic gameplay, Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege Vegas 2 offers visceral shooter action with what were high-end Xbox 360 visuals. Where Tumblestone is a small multiplayer puzzler, Tron: Evolution is a linear single-player action-adventure.
July's Games With Gold line-up is personally one of my favorites in some time. The Banner Saga suffers from a bit of being unwillingly niche, perhaps due to its uncommon strategic gameplay and rather abrasive difficulty. Nevertheless, it is absolutely one of the best games released yet in 2016. It is stark, beautiful and thoroughly challenging. Add in the wonderful couch co-op memories of Rainbow Six Vegas 2 and July is looking to be a delight.
To recap, July's free Xbox Games With Gold include The Banner Saga 2, Tumblestone, Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Vegas 2 and Tron: Evolution.