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May 2019 Xbox Update includes improvements to your friends list, messaging and better sorting

Team Xbox is hard at work preparing for E3 and beyond, but we have a few new features that are rolling out broadly beginning today! The May 2019 Xbox Update includes improvements to your friends list, messaging, and better sorting in My Games & Apps. Here’s a rundown of what’s new:

  

Friends list now shows where your friends are playing
We know that your friends play games across many different devices, including Xbox One, Windows 10, and mobile. To make it easier for you to know what, and where, your friends are playing we are making an update to your friends list! With this feature, we are adding unique Xbox One, PC, or mobile icons next to each of your friends in your friends list showing you which device they are currently playing on.

Message Requests
Your messages are getting smarter. Xbox is adding a new Message Requests feature which will prioritize messages from your friends and anyone you want to communicate with while separating out messages from people you don’t know into a secondary message requests tab.

As part of this update, unfortunately all previous group messages will be lost in the transition and will require manual action to archive. If you want to back up any previous group messages, you can copy/paste them from Xbox.com for a limited time. Your messages with individual users will not be impacted. Please go here if you wish to review your messages.

Better Sorting in My Games & Apps
Our team has made it even easier to find the content you’re looking for in My Games & Apps. Articles such as “a,” “an” and “the” will no longer be used to sort titles when using the “Sort A-Z” and “Group by letter” views. For example, “The Witcher” will now be found under “W” instead of “T.” Thanks so much to our Xbox community for helping prioritize this change by voting in our recent “My Games & Apps” Idea Drive, and don’t forget to check the Xbox Idea Hub for other topics to which you can contribute.

These updates are available based on the input from our Xbox Insiders who have helped shape these features. Thank you to all of you for your valuable input and continued participation. If you’d like to help define the future of Xbox and get access to early features, download the Xbox Insider Hub app on your Xbox One or Windows 10 PC today and share your ideas at the Xbox Ideas Hub. You can also visit the Xbox Insider Blog here for the latest release notes and to learn more. Enjoy the May Update and happy gaming!

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Xbox’s ‘Game of Thrones’ giveaway reveals new Iron Throne console

Last week, we announced a new Game of Thrones sweepstakes featuring custom House Targaryen and Night King designed consoles, and you didn’t think we’d just stop there, did you? We’re thrilled to unveil this giveaway will also include a third prize – an Iron Throne designed custom console! The fight to rule from the Iron Throne started nearly a decade ago and launched countless wars, battles and betrayals. It’s almost time to see who will reign victorious over the Seven Kingdoms, and it’s only right we made an epic custom console to honor this moment in television history.

Just like the Iron Throne that sits in King’s Landing, the console features the swords of enemies that surrendered to Aegon the Conqueror. This is only the third custom design created for the newest member of the Xbox One family – the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition. Built for disc-free gaming and entertainment, the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition comes bundled with Minecraft, Sea of Thieves and Forza Horizon 3. This Iron Throne console is truly fitting of the king or queen of Westeros!

Open until May 22, fans just need to RT our official Twitter post or “like” the official Facebook post announcing the giveaway. At the end of the giveaway, only three fans will be able to game with House Targaryen, the Night King or the Iron Throne at their side. What new heights will your gaming reach with “Game of Thrones” at your side? For full giveaway rules, see here.

Fans can also pre-order Season 8 of Game of Thrones on Xbox with Microsoft Movies & TV and receive an exclusive Iron Throne avatar with their purchase. For those who pre-order the “Game of Thrones” Seasons 1-8 Complete Series digital bundle, you’ll get the Iron Throne avatar plus two additional avatars. Full details here.

Don’t forget to tune in to the “Game of Thrones” series finale on May 19 to see what prophecies come to life, which characters will give their lives to their cause, or whom – if anyone – is left as the new ruler of the Seven Kingdoms.

Your favorite characters have killed, schemed, risen back from the dead and much more in their quest to ascend onto the Iron Throne. Don’t miss out, these custom consoles are the ultimate prize for gamers and “Game of Thrones” fans around the world!

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ID@Xbox Game Fest brings a month of games for everyone

We’re excited to kick off the fourth annual ID@Xbox Game Fest this week, where we celebrate the diverse range of games and experiences offered by independent developers on Xbox One.

From May 7-27, we’ll be unearthing some of the ID@Xbox program’s hidden gems for players to discover. Beginning this week until May 20, we will focus on Gaming for Everyone and feature diverse stories, voices, creators, and characters across 31 participating titles. We’ll wrap up the month (May 21-27) with an ID@Xbox Super Sale highlighting even more games that have released through the ID@Xbox program.

As a Game Fest tradition, we talked with the developers behind some of these games to learn more about what Gaming for Everyone means to them as well as how their own personal stories have impacted the experience and creative processes for their games.

1979 Revolution: Black Friday – “Diversity of experience is one facet of the Gaming for Everyone ethos, and an interactive drama set against the turbulent backdrop of Middle Eastern politics and civil unrest certainly isn’t your typical video game. 1979 Revolution: Black Friday not only demonstrates the medium as a unique platform for powerful story-telling, but also how it can be used as an engaging and entertaining means to inform and educate on a complex, real-world subject that, normally, would fall beyond the interests and/or awareness of many people.” – Matt Cundy, Digerati community manager

Our goal was to breathe life into a piece of history that few understand intimately. By engaging with a diverse cast of characters and engaging with narrative choices, we were able to blend the forms of gaming and documentary to capture a digital recreation of Iran in 1979 for a whole new generation to discover.” – Navid Khonsari, creator of 1979 Revolution: Black Friday and iNK Stories co-founder

Dandara – “Even after many rewrites and inspirations, I think Dandara is always going to be a statement about Brazilian culture and history. It’s an outsider’s scream telling you that inspiration can be found by looking out of your own window, or even closer, on your own story. Better yet if it is able to touch you through those inspirations, with stories and people you have not stopped to think about.” – Luke Icenhower, marketing manager

FirewatchFirewatch is single player, first-person mystery. We love games that transport you to a faraway, unusual place and tell you a gripping story, but we don’t so much love games that trap you in impossible combat scenarios or esoteric puzzles along the way. So, we made Firewatch a mystery for everybody – where the game design isn’t about how good you are with a gun but what it feels like to be alone in the woods with (almost) no one to trust.” – Sean Vanaman, writer/designer

In Between In Between started out as part of my bachelor’s thesis back in university dealing with with the taboo topics of death and dying within a video game. In the end, our mission with In Between was to tell a story, that follows along a specific theme but that would still allow players their own interpretations and provide different possibilities for self-identification. We hope to try and give an insight into/make it easier for other people to relate to the thoughts and emotions of family members, friends or anyone else who finds him-/herself in these seemingly hopeless situations.” – Daniel, art director, co-founder

Night in the WoodsNight in the Woods was an interesting project to write code and music for because, while we had an overall outline in mind, we left a lot of things open for ‘improvisation.’ I had to stay on my toes to make sure we could adapt the code to whatever new ideas might come up. It’s really cool that Night in the Woods has meant a lot to a bunch of folks, because it originated from this very odd and personal process.” – Alec Holowka, programmer, composer and game designer

The Path of Motus“I think the game deals with issues that most people face daily. I know many people that had big dreams as a kid, but as they get older society beats those ideas out of their head and they settle for less than what they want in life. I hope this game speaks to those people and shows them that it’s never too late to pursue your dreams in life. I know some people are stuck in their situation due to monetary problems, so I also released a free educational video series showing people how to program games on our website (pathofmotus.com) to help folks that are interested in game development. I hope The Path of Motus can have some type of positive impact on everyone that plays.” – Michael Hicks, designer

Where the Bees Make Honey“I make games to express myself and to communicate with others. Through the power of interactivity, games offer experiences from different cultures and communities.” – Brian Wilson, developer

See below for the rest of the games included in Game Fest this week:

39 Days to Mars

Aritana and the Harpy’s Feather

Blackwood Crossing

Celeste

Fragments of Him

Gone Home: Console Edition

I, Hope

Monica e a Guarda dos Coelhos

Mulaka

Never Alone Arctic Collection

Nippon Marathon

Old Man’s Journey

Perception

SOMA

Storm Boy

Tacoma

The First Tree

The King’s Bird

The Mooseman

The Town of Light

Three Fourths Home: Extended Edition

What Remains of Edith Finch

Wheels of Aurelia

Yonder: The Cloud Catcher Chronicles

This is just a taste of all the great games included in ID@Xbox Game Fest. The Gaming for Everyone theme will run from May 2 through to May 20, so jump in and start discovering the games behind these exceptional stories.

To see all titles included in the first week of Game Fest visit Xbox.com.

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Coming soon to Xbox Game Pass: ‘Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus,’ ‘Wargroove’ and more

*Alarm blares*

*Yawns*

Whoa, you would not believe the dream I just had! I was driving along the countryside when I took a wrong turn, hit a random turbo boost, flew into the sky, and ended up on Mars! That seemed normal, but the weird part came when knights and pirates started flying toward me from out of nowhere. Oh, and did I mention that everyone was block-shaped? This hasn’t been the first time I’ve had this dream either. Maybe I should stop having strawberry milkshakes before bed. Or maybe I’ve just been thinking about all the games coming to Xbox Game Pass.

I should point out, if you’re looking for less random dreams and more actual memes, check out our Xbox Game Pass Instagram and Twitter accounts. Also, be sure to check out our Xbox Game Pass mobile app so you can discover and download new games immediately when they become available. Consider it a helpful tip from a well-rested gamer. Either way, there’s a lot of thoughts to process here, so let me tell you all about them:

Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus(May 2)

Play as war-hero BJ Blazkowicz and lead the second American Revolution by recruiting a band of resistance fighters to hunt down the evil Frau Engel and dismantle her Nazi war machine. Armed with powerful weapons and dynamic combat abilities, fight your way across an American landscape twisted by Nazi occupation. Only you have the guns, guts, and gumption to liberate America.

Wargroove (May 2)

When war breaks out in the Kingdom of Cherrystone, the young Queen Mercia must flee her home. Pursued by her foes, the only way to save her kingdom is travel to new lands in search of allies. But who will she meet along the way, and what sinister challenges will she face?

Descenders 1.0 (May 7)

Descenders is extreme downhill mountain biking with real consequences. Power down a variety of increasingly treacherous slopes and mountains, including icy peaks, dusty canyons, and dense jungles, in more than half a billion levels across nine different environments. Head out into the world either on your own, with a set of friends, or with a band of strangers who are ready to ride alongside you. Will you be King of the Hill?

Surviving Mars (May 9)

You must construct a self-sustaining colony capable of supporting human life on Mars. This is no walk in the park thanks to the Red Planet’s hostile environment, limited access to resources, and lack of breathable air – all not exactly human friendly. To ensure your colony’s survival, you’ll need to balance everything from life support to resource management and more. But all is not lost! There are things you can do to help your budding colony along the way such as researching new technologies and uncovering the secrets of Mars to make sure your colonists are happy and healthy.

Tacoma (May 9)

The Venturis Corporation wants its AI back. That’s where you come in. At the heart of Tacoma is the facility’s digital surveillance system, which has captured 3D recordings of pivotal moments in the crew’s life on the station. As you explore, echoes of these captured moments surround you. You’ll use your ability to rewind, fast-forward, and move through the physical space of these complex, interwoven scenes to examine events from every angle and reconstruct the multi-layered narrative.

Black Desert (May 9)

Experience fast-paced combat and an immersive story within an expansive world just waiting to be explored. Black Desert chronicles a conflict between two rival nations, the Republic of Calpheon and the Kingdom of Valencia. During your action-packed journey you are accompanied by a Black Spirit – a companion whose destiny is intertwined with your own – as you discover the secret of the Black Stones and the history of their corrupting effects in this massive MMORPG on Xbox One.

For the King (May 10)

Embark on a perilous adventure in this strategic RPG that blends tabletop and roguelike elements in a challenging journey spanning the realms. Set off on a single player experience or play cooperatively both online and locally as you attempt to discover the mystery surrounding the King’s death and bring order back to the realms. And as an added member benefit, Xbox Game Pass members can play the game three days before its launch, starting on May 7!

The Surge (May 16)

Welcome to CREO, the megacorporation saving our world! You’re knocked out by a catastrophic event during your first day on the job and wake up in a destroyed section of the complex. From robots gone haywire, out of control augmented co-workers, and rogue AI – everything wants you dead. Equipped with a heavy-grade exoskeleton, you must defy deadly enemies and huge bosses in tight, visceral melee combat. Slice limbs off your foes to take advantage of the next-gen loot system, where you loot what you dismember and craft new weapons and armors from the spoils!

LEGO Batman 3 (May 16)

The Caped Crusader joins forces with the superheroes of the DC Comics universe and blasts off to outer space to stop the evil Brainiac from destroying Earth. Using the power of the Lantern Rings, Brainiac shrinks worlds to add to his twisted collection of miniature cities from across the universe. Now the greatest superheroes and the most cunning villains must unite and journey to different Lantern Worlds to collect the Lantern Rings and stop Brainiac before it’s too late.

Enjoy these content updates with Xbox Game Pass:

Oh, and did we mention that we have a present for you, since we love you so much (and you read down this far)?  Soccer meets driving in Rocket League, an award-winning, physics-based multiplayer-focused mash-up! Choose from a variety of high-flying vehicles and show off your Xbox fandom with the Xbox Customization Pack. This pack includes: Wheels, Boost, Octane Decal, and Player Banner and is free to all Xbox Game Pass members. The pack is available first to Xbox Game Pass members ‪until July 15*, when it becomes available to all Xbox players.

And don’t sleep on these awesome free updates to games already available with Xbox Game Pass:

  • Minecraft Village & Pillage update- Discover the most adventurous update yet! Defend against new threats, build with new blocks, and experience life in all-new villages.
  • Sea of Thieves is celebrating a year of adventures! Now that’s a lot of gold and bananas. In their Anniversary Update, they’ll be introducing Tall Tales – Shores of Gold, The Arena, and The Hunter’s Call starting today! State of Decay 2 came out with their Create Your Own Apocalypse content update, expect to see deadlier zombies, a faster-acting blood plague, and hostile humans capable of scoring lethal headshots. Not the kind of dream we expected.
  • Human: Fall Flat gets dark with their new Dark Level Update. It’s the biggest and most graphically stunning level yet! Play now with your friends.

You know, describing my dreams to you has been so helpful. Way more helpful than staring at inkblots and trying to guess if I see a butterfly or a goblin or something.

Join Xbox Game Pass Today

With over 100 high-quality games and new games added all the time, Xbox Game Pass is the new way to discover your next favorite game. If you haven’t tried Xbox Game Pass, join today and get your first 3 months for $1.

Editor’s Note: We have updated the post to include one more title coming to Xbox Game Pass in May.

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Anniversary update for ‘Sea of Thieves’ available for free April 30

The Anniversary Update for Sea of Thieves is available for free on April 30 with Xbox Game Pass or on Xbox One, Windows 10 PC, and our biggest update yet is packed with content we know will appeal to players of all kinds. From the glory and gunfire of competitive multiplayer in The Arena to the serenity of fishing up your latest catch for the Hunter’s Call Trading Company, the Anniversary Update brings something for everyone. If you’re the adventurous kind of pirate, though, it’s likely Shores of Gold – our first set of narrative-driven Tall Tales – that caught your eye when we unveiled the update back in March.

Today, we’re taking a closer look at what it means to bring story-focused adventures to a shared-world game, and some of the new gameplay features players can expect as they seek out the mythical Shroudbreaker relic.

Shores of Gold is made up of nine distinct Tall Tales, each of which can be tackled as part of a pirate crew or by a solo player. Although each Tale is part of a larger saga that spans the Sea of Thieves, they can be enjoyed individually and you’re able to replay Tales you’ve completed previously. In fact, each Tale has been structured to be played repeatedly, meaning you won’t always find secrets and solutions in the places you might have been expecting them.

Your quest to reach the Shores of Gold, a legendary location filled with untold riches that lies within the deadly Devil’s Shroud, begins with the hunt for an ancient relic that can clear a path through the fog – a relic once sought by the Pirate Lord himself. All of this takes place upon the same shared seas as always, so other pirate crews may have their part to play in your adventure.

This perilous endeavour is just the start of an epic journey that will lead players across the Sea of Thieves. There’ll be ancient parchments to decipher, puzzles to solve, traps to dodge, and battles with fearsome enemies that stand between you and your ultimate destination – the massive, mysterious island known as the Shores of Gold.

Along the way you’ll meet a rag-tag cast of heroes and villains, some of whom are familiar faces from the game and the Sea of Thieves expanded universe, along with an all new assortment of warmongers, cursed rogues, star-crossed lovers and more. Every tale features professional voice acting to help advance the story, not to mention secret lore books and commendations to work towards as you play.

If all of this has you itching to take the wheel and weigh anchor, you haven’t got long to wait before the Tall Tales – Shores of Gold arrives as part of the Anniversary Update on April 30. Until then, more clues await in the official trailer.

Key Features

  • Tall Tales – Shores of Gold brings nine story-driven adventures to the shared world of Sea of Thieves.
  • Players can enjoy each adventure as part of a crew or alone, and Tales are designed to be replayed and enjoyed again and again.
  • New types of gameplay, including enchanted tools and artefacts to master and new locations to explore.
  • Decipher long-lost journals and ancient puzzles, battle against fearsome new foes and dodge deadly traps in underground labyrinths.
  • Tales designed to imbue excitement, fear, sadness and joy, with characters voiced by professional actors.
  • Available to all players for free as part of the Sea of Thieves Anniversary Update.

New to Sea of Thieves? Join the adventure with Xbox Game Pass or on Xbox One and Windows 10 PC. If you haven’t tried Xbox Game Pass yet, join today to get your first month for $1 and get access to over 100 great games, with new titles being added all of the time. Prospective pirates can learn more at xbox.com/seaofthieves or visit the Sea of Thieves website at SeaofThieves.com to embark on an epic journey with one of gaming’s most welcoming communities.

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‘Gears of War’ Esports Pro Circuit to wrap up Season 2 in Boston

After 15 Pro Circuit events and a total prize pool of $3 million, the final Gears Pro Circuit event of Gears of War 4 is here. With $300,000 on the line, the top pro and amateur teams from around the world will gather in Boston on April 26-28 at the Hynes Convention Center to take home the trophy and bragging rights leading into the next season of Gears Esports, set to debut following the launch of Gears 5 later this year.

There is no shortage of storylines coming into this event. Perennial favorites OpTic Gaming are looking to claim their 13th Pro Circuit trophy and further prove why they should be considered the most successful esports team of all time. Team Reciprocity (formerly Denial) is looking to avenge a devastating loss in Mexico City where, despite sending OpTic Gaming to the losers bracket, they couldn’t secure the victory in the grand finals. Rise Nation is full of confidence as they are bringing their complete roster for the first time since they placed 2nd at the Columbus Invitational last fall. Ghost Gaming, the top ranked Latin American team, and Elevate, the top European team, both dominate their regions and want to prove they can compete with their North American counterparts.

In addition to the 5v5 Escalation action, there will be the Gears Pro Circuit 2v2 tournament where 128 top teams can compete for a dedicated prize pool of $20,000. The action kicks off on Saturday, April 27 with key 2v2 matches played on the feature stage. The 2v2 tournament is free to join and open to all attendees. Registration takes place at the venue from Saturday, April 27 from 1:00-3:00 PM EDT.

Watch all the action at http://live.gearsofwar.com starting at 2PM EDT on Friday, April 26 and then again on Saturday and Sunday at 10:00 AM EDT.

Visit www.gears.gg and follow @EsportsGears on Twitter to keep up-to-date with the latest information about Gears Esports and the Gears Pro Circuit Boston Open.

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News recap from ‘Inside Xbox’ April episode

Today, on our April episode of Inside Xbox, we made a big announcement about a brand-new Xbox One console, revealed some major news regarding Xbox Game Pass, unveiled some new features coming to Game Bar, shared info on new titles coming to Xbox One Backward Compatibility, and much more. For a full recap, read on below or watch the replay of Inside Xbox episode above when the VOD is available.

Introducing the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition

The big news coming out of today’s show was our reveal of The Xbox One S All-Digital Edition, which was created for those who prefer to find and play their games digitally and are looking for the most affordable way to play Xbox games. The Xbox One S All-Digital Edition comes bundled with three of our most compelling and popular games – Minecraft, Forza Horizon 3 and Sea of Thieves. It also comes with a special offer to get started with Xbox Game Pass. Available for pre-order today at $249.99 USD, the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition is $50 USD less than Xbox One S, and we expect to maintain at least that price difference between the two consoles going forward. Read more here.

Get the Best of Both Worlds with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

In June 2017, we launched Xbox Game Pass – with the goal of empowering gamers all over the world to discover their next favorite game. A top request fans have shared from day one is to provide an option to get Xbox Game Pass and Xbox Live Gold in a single membership. We heard you. Today, we’re excited to announce Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. Xbox Game Pass Ultimate will include all of the benefits of Xbox Live Gold with Xbox Game Pass. That means the full Xbox Game Pass library of over 100 high quality games, and Xbox Live Gold online multiplayer, in one convenient membership for $14.99 a month. With Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, gamers will be able to play together on the most-advanced multiplayer network and discover their next favorite game. Read more here.

Brand-new Features are Coming to Game bar

A few weeks ago, we shared that Game bar on Windows 10 was getting a major overhaul. From Spotify integration to improved social experiences that enable you to see what your friends are playing, quickly text or voice chat, and create memes to share via Twitter, there are a number of ways that the team is making this the best version of Game bar yet based on community feedback. Game bar is an overlay built into Windows so it works over any PC game. In order to make the overlay your own, we added the ability to customize Game bar. Choose which widgets to show/hide, where you want them located, and even pin specific widgets. Find your own favorite Game bar layout to enhance your gaming experience. In addition to all of those improvements, today we shared that our Looking for Group (LFG) feature will also be added to Game bar, allowing you to quickly and easily find people to bring into battle with you (or, if you prefer, battle against). To try out these features, launch the Xbox Insider Hub on your Windows 10 PC. Read more here.

New Competitive Game Mode and Story-Rich Quests are Coming to Sea of Thieves

Sea of Thieves Executive Producer Joe Neate made an appearance on this week’s show to share more on the updates the Rare team announced this morning. First there’s The Arena, a brand-new competitive game mode that offers all the best bits of Sea of Thieves concentrated into fast-paced and fun 24-minute matches. For players looking for rich and immersive new quests, there are Tall Tales. These are epic story-driven quests that play out in the shared world, with the first collection – Shores of Gold – taking players across the seas to experience a story of love, honor and betrayal in search of the mythical Shores of Gold. Finally, there’s a brand-new Trading Company, The Hunter’s Call. This will offer players new ways to play and progress and includes a raft of new features including fishing (with 50 different types of fish to catch), cooking and hunting. Watch the new trailer here.

Go Behind the Scenes of Gears Esports with the ELEAGUE Gears Summer Series

In partnership with ELEAGUE, Xbox announced the ELEAGUE Gears Summer Series: The Bonds and Betrayals of Brotherhood – a six-part event series and live tournament focused on the stories and players behind the world of Gears Esports with the first episode debuting on TBS, Friday, June 14, at 11 pm ET/PT. ELEAGUE will also feature the worldwide debut of Gears 5 Versus multiplayer, culminating in The Invitational at the end of the season, within ELEAGUE Arena at Turner Studios in Atlanta from Saturday-Sunday, July 13-14. Read more here.

Six Beloved Titles Join Xbox One Backward Compatibility with Xbox One X Enhancements

Announcing new titles coming to Xbox One Backward Compatibility is always exciting, but it’s even better when we can reveal that said titles are being enhanced for Xbox One X. Today, we were happy to share that Ninja Gaiden 2, Fable 2, Fable 3, Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell Blacklist, Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell Conviction, and Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell Double Agent are all enhanced for Xbox One X. Best of all, they’re all available starting today! Remember, Xbox 360 games enhanced for Xbox One X run at a higher resolution and 9X the original pixel count. The power of Xbox One X enables the Xbox 360 emulator to showcase the very best version possible with the existing assets—all without touching the game code. Today’s additions join our existing catalog for a total of 62 Xbox One X Enhanced Backward Compatible games.

Exploring Some Exciting New Games on the Horizon

During the show, we took a closer look at some games that’ll be hitting Xbox One in the coming months. First up was Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, the new Star Wars game from Respawn Entertainment that was revealed this weekend at Star Wars Celebration. Next, got up close and personal with Rage 2, the upcoming shooter from Bethesda that offers up one of the wildest post-apocalyptic settings we’ve ever seen. Finally, we shared that Warhammer Chaosbane is set to launch on June 4th. If you love the warhammer universe or some good old-fashioned dungeon crawling, then this game is for you. Best of all, the next closed beta is about to start in just two days. That’s right: On April 18th, you’ll be able to jump into the action as Bragi Axebiter, the Dwarf-killer and Elessa the Wood Elf, who will be joining the soldier and high elf classes from the first beta. This means that all four classes will be playable at once, and in a whole new region!

Announcing Details for Xbox FanFest: E3 2019

On today’s episode, FanFest Lead Chris Munson shared that this marks the 5th year of FanFest, which explains why he was so excited to reveal brand-new details on Xbox FanFest at E3 2019 during his segment. With E3 2019 marking our biggest E3 presence ever, we’re thrilled to share that 700 tickets will be available for E3 FanFest, which will include experiencing the Xbox Briefing, a FanFest Showcase, and much more. Chris broke down some of the details on things like the ticketing process and how you can bring a guest along with you, as well as what you’ll get with your ticket. There’s a lot of goodness this year, so be sure to check out our full FanFest post for the complete details! Read more here.

Phil Spencer Talks E3 2019, Xbox Studios, and More

To close out today’s show, we had a special guest appearance by the Head of Xbox himself, Phil Spencer. During his segment, he talked Project xCloud and how we at Xbox put the gamer at the center of how we build our strategy and services, driven by the idea that as a gamer you should be able to play the games you want to play, on the devices you want to play them on with your friends, anywhere you go.  Spencer also talked about his excitement to be representing the broader gaming community at E3 2019. We recently announced plans for our biggest presence ever, including Xbox E3 FanFest, and the diversity of the content across Xbox and PC that we’ll be highlighting in the briefing from both Xbox Game Studios and third-party partners from around the world.

We hope you enjoyed the show, and we’ll see you next month!

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Meet the newest member of the Xbox One family – the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition

At Xbox, we’re inspired by gamers – they’re at the center of everything we do. We’re constantly listening to your feedback and looking for new ways to provide the best value and choice in gaming. Today, we’re excited to announce a new choice we’re bringing to gamers – the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition.

Consumer appetite for digital content and experiences are stronger today than ever before. Gaming and technology have changed quite a bit since the first Xbox debuted in 2001. During this time, we’ve seen a digital transformation across gaming, music, TV and movies. And closer to home, the success of Xbox Game Pass, which gives members access to over 100 great games, is just another example of how consumers today have grown to expect great digital content.  The Xbox One S All-Digital Edition was created for those who prefer to find and play their games digitally and are looking for the most affordable way to play Xbox games.

The Xbox One S All-Digital Edition comes bundled with three of our most compelling and popular games – Minecraft, Forza Horizon 3 and Sea of Thieves. These critically acclaimed titles are sure to offer something for everyone in the family to enjoy.

Those new players joining us can get a head start on their digital collections and discover their next favorite game through Xbox Game Pass. If you haven’t tried Xbox Game Pass yet, the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition comes with a special offer to get started with access to over 100 great games, and with new games being added all the time there will always be something new to queue in your digital library. Cord cutters will enjoy watching 4K HDR entertainment with Netflix, Amazon and more, and thousands of Xbox One games are available from the Microsoft Store digitally.

We realize price plays an important role in providing the opportunity to make console gaming more accessible to more gamers around the world. Available for pre-order today at $249.99 USD, the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition is $50 USD less than Xbox One S, and we expect to maintain at least that price difference between the two consoles going forward.

You can pick up the disc-free Xbox One S All-Digital Edition at your local Microsoft Store or online, as well as select retailers worldwide including Walmart, Best Buy and Amazon.com beginning May 7.

We’re always grateful to our fans for their continued support and look forward to continuing to bring you a diverse line of best-in-class hardware to fulfill all of your gaming needs.

Visit Xbox.com or your local retailer, including Microsoft Store, for more information.

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April 2019 Xbox Update begins rolling out

Now that we are officially in Spring, it is time to start cleaning out your game backlog. Even with so much gaming to do, we have some new features to share coming to Xbox One. The April 2019 Xbox Update includes new ways to engage with Xbox Game Pass, use the virtual keyboard, and manage your digital library. Here’s a rundown of what’s new:

Streamlined Xbox Game Pass Quests
Xbox Game Pass Quests are better than ever! As this feature rolls out, you will be able to access quests progress directly from the dash and browse all quests from My Profile. Start earning rewards for playing great games, jump in and try out Xbox Game Pass quests!

Mini Virtual Keyboard
We understand that navigating a virtual keyboard can be a challenge whether you’re writing an LFG post for Apex Legends or inputting a 5×5 code for a new game. In order to improve this experience, we are releasing a new mini virtual keyboard option for Xbox One. This new virtual keyboard takes up less screen space, streamlining the typing experience. If you prefer or require the bigger keyboard for accessibility, it is still available and can be enabled in Settings -> Ease of Access -> Magnifier -> Larger Keyboard.

Restart added to Power Center
Based on user feedback, we have added a new option to restart the console to the Power Center. You can now access this feature quickly by holding down the Xbox button on the controller to bring up the Power Center instead of having to navigate to it within the System tab.

Improved Uninstall
When you try to install a new game or app today, we send you to your collection to choose what to remove if your hard drive is full. As of the April 2019 Xbox Update, we will now suggest titles that will free up enough space for your install. To make things even easier it will automatically kickoff the install once the space is freed up!

You can also get to the new Drive Manager page via Settings > System > Storage to easily manage your existing content and uninstall multiple titles at once.

Programmable OneGuide Button on Xbox Media Remote
The Xbox Media Remote is updated to allow the OneGuide button to be reprogrammed to launch a media app instead of OneGuide. This is a great shortcut to jump into your favorite media app and start watching.

These updates are available based on the input from our Xbox Insiders who have helped shape these features. Thank you to all of you for your valuable input and continued participation. If you’d like to help define the future of Xbox and get access to early features, download the Xbox Insider Hub app on your Xbox One or Windows 10 PC today and share your ideas at the Xbox Ideas Hub. You can also visit the Xbox Insider Blog here for the latest release notes and to learn more. Enjoy the April Update and happy gaming!

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Coming soon to Xbox Game Pass: ‘Monster Hunter: World,’ ‘Prey’ and more

If you read our IRL patch notes on Twitter, you’ll note that it’s Spring and with that, it’s starting to rain and we’re not really a fan of that. Every day we go into a closet, pull out the yellow rain boots we promised our moms we’d use, and bike uphill in the early morning rain to get to the Xbox Game Pass office. These boots by the way… are really squeaky. The lone ray of sunshine in this wet, squeaky situation is that we have a gusof new games to rain down on Xbox Game Pass members. Let’s check them out: 

Prey(April 11)

Good morning, Morgan. Prey joins the Xbox Game Pass library tomorrow, taking you from the comfort of your home to the treacherous depths of space. As Morgan Yu, you’ll have to use your wits, weapons, and strange powers to fight the alien threat that has overtaken the Talos I space station. Explore the station, upgrade your skills and abilities, and uncover the secrets of Talos I and the dangers within.

The Golf Club 2(April 11)

Play a dynamic single and multi-player experience with unlimited possibilities. Take a swing on new, lush golf courses or create your very own! Intuitive and realistic swing mechanics, infinite hours of gameplay, the opportunity to become a pro, and prestigious Club Societies are in store for you in this definitive golfing experience!

Monster Hunter: World(April 18)

Enter a living, breathing ecosystem where players become hunters who seek and slay ferocious beasts in heart-pounding battles that unfold across the vast, ever-changing terrain. You are a hunter of the Fifth Fleet, tasked with investigating the mysterious behaviors of the Elder Dragons out in the new world. As a hunter, you must use your cunning and skill to track and maneuver targets throughout intense, evolving battles. Venture solo on quests or partner with up to three other hunters online for cooperative play.

The Walking Dead: A New Frontier(April 18)

Play as Javier Garcia, disgraced former baseball star now fighting to protect those he loves in a world plagued by the undead. As humanity is pushed to a breaking point, Javier finds his fate bound to a young survivor called Clementine. Thrown into conflict with the ruthless New Frontier, they must rely on each other to survive and find the family they’ve lost. Make choices that shape the fate of those around you, engage in thrilling action scenes, and explore beautiful comic book styled environments from “The Walking Dead.”  

Life is Strange 2: Episode 2(April 24)

Run. From. Danger.” Brothers Sean and Daniel face another dangerous road during the heart of winter. As Sean continues to train Daniel’s growing telekinetic power, they’re faced with an unexpected road bump – Daniel’s gotten sick and isn’t getting any better. Still far from their destination of Mexico, the brothers have found shelter in snowy northern Oregon. Will this be the solace that finally keeps them safe? Sean’s key rule: “Hide your power” has worked for them up until now, but what happens if they’re turned over to the police?

Resident Evil5 (April 25)

The Umbrella Corporation and its crop of lethal viruses have been destroyed and contained, but a new, more dangerous threat has emerged — somewhere in Africa, innocent villagers are transforming into aggressive and disturbing creatures. Featuring online co-op, players can experience this Resident Evil classic as either Chris Redfield or his new partner Sheva Alomar, as the duo must work together to investigate and stop whatever is causing the disturbing turn of events.

Look at those games! That makes the whole “biking uphill in the rain” thing a lot more worth it. We’re not sure how to make the games stop, so if you want to stay updated be sure follow us on Instagram and Twitter. We might throw a meme in there too. There’s also the Xbox Game Pass mobile app, which has fewer memes, but comes with real game notifications and helps you remote install to your home consoleThat way your games are ready to play when you are, and instead of rushing home from work to install a game, you’re rushing home from work to play a game. So much better.

Now if you’ll excuse us, we need a coffee to warm us up while we drip dry. *squeak* *squeak* *squeak* *squeak*

Join Xbox Game Pass Today

With over 100 high-quality games and new games added all the time, Xbox Game Pass is the new way to discover your next favorite game. If you haven’t tried Xbox Game Pass, join today and get your first month for $1.