Xbox One Backwards Compatibility Adds 'Halo: Reach', Missing 'Black Ops' And 'BioShock'

The promised December update to the Xbox One backwards compatibility list arrived Thursday. A new slate of Xbox 360 titles announced on Xbox Wire can now be played on the current generation console. However, some previously mentioned titles such as Call of Duty: Black Ops and the BioShock series are curiously missing.

The Xbox One backwards compatibility list grew by 16 games with the December update. Four of those titles come out of the Games on Demand program for retail titles, with the balance coming from the Xbox LIVE Arcade (XBLA) line-up.

  • Braid (XBLA)
  • DEUS EX: HUMAN REVOLUTION (Games on Demand)
  • Doritos Crash Course (XBLA)
  • Fable III (Games on Demand)
  • Halo: Reach (Games on Demand)
  • Hydro Thunder (XBLA)
  • Iron Brigade (XBLA)
  • Kane & Lynch 2 (Games on Demand)
  • Motocross Madness (XBLA)
  • Peggle (XBLA)
  • Portal: Still Alive (XBLA)
  • Spelunky (XBLA)
  • Splosion Man (XBLA)
  • Ticket to Ride (XBLA)
  • Zuma's Revenge! (XBLA)
Xbox December Backwards Compatibility Update
[Image via Xbox Wire]Somewhat disappointingly, most of the games teased for the December update are not included in this list. Microsoft listed Halo: Reach, Halo Wars, Call of Duty: Black Ops, Bioshock, Bioshock 2, Bioshock Infinite, and Skate 3 as games coming to Xbox One backwards compatibility when the initial list of titles was revealed in November. Only Halo: Reach made it into the December update out of that selection of seven games.

Part of the confusion comes from how Microsoft marketed the seven titles when revealing the full list of 100. They were listed as "upcoming," which many assumed meant that they would be available for the December update. That's obviously not the case.

As the Inquisitr previously covered, Xbox One manages backwards compatibility by emulating the entire Xbox 360 operating system. This allows Xbox 360 games to run on the Xbox One without any special coding or other workarounds. The major hurdle that is left is licensing agreements with the development studios and publishers to allow the games to be played on the Xbox One and listed for sale on the Xbox Store for the console.

Microsoft has not announced a reason for the absence of the other six titles or an expected release date. It is possible that the licensing agreements or some other technical issues still needs to be hammered out to bring the games forward to the Xbox One.

Xbox December Games with Gold Lineup
[Image via Xbox Wire]As a reminder, the free Games with Gold Xbox 360 titles for December are backwards compatible, too. CastleStorm just ended its run as a free download on December 15 to make way for Sacred 3 and Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising. Both can be purchased for free from the Xbox Store on the web, and then downloaded on the Xbox One. Interestingly, Operation Flashpoint is listed on the Xbox official list of available games, but Sacred 3 is not on that list, nor the list of new games made available for December. However, the text of the December backwards compatibility update specifically calls out the game.

Backwards compatibility on the Xbox One has been a success so far, however. The initial slate of 100 games made available with the big New Xbox Experience update to the console has resulted in tons of play time for older titles.

"Since launch on Nov. 12, fans have been enjoying Xbox 360 games on Xbox One for the first time ever, logging more than 9 million hours spent playing Xbox 360 games on Xbox One," Microsoft announced. "And the most popular games fans from around the world have been spending those hours playing are Fallout 3, Gears of War 3, Just Cause 2, Assassin's Creed II, and DiRT 3."

How have you been enjoying Xbox 360 games on the Xbox One so far? Sound off in the comments below.

[Image via Halo Reach]