Xbox Live ‘Games With Gold’ Program Makes ‘Gears of War 2’ Free Starting Today, February 16

Two new Xbox games are free starting today, February 16, via Microsoft’s Xbox Live Games with Gold program.

Xbox 360 owners with Xbox Live Gold membership can get their own copy of Gears of War 2 for no cost. The game is listed as one of the free games for Xbox Live Gold members for February 2016. According to Major Nelson, it replaces the side scrolling and action brawler title from Southend Interactive called “Sacred: Citadel.” With a regular price of $9.99, the video game published by Deep Silver was free via Games with Gold from February 1 to 15.

Xbox Live 'Games With Gold' Program

And commencing today until February 29, fans with Xbox Live Gold subscription are free to download Gears of War 2, which is originally worth $19.99. The 6.29-gigabyte heavy action title was initially released in November 2008. Developed by Epic Games, the second installment for the military sci-fi and third person shooter video game “continues the story of Marcus Fenix and Delta Squad, locked in an increasingly desperate battle against the nightmarish Locust Horde for the survival of humanity,” according to IGN. The description for one of the titles included in February’s Games with Gold program read:

“The game promises to be an epic saga of survival, loss, and retribution. Just as ‘Gears of War’ set the standard for high-definition visuals, ‘Gears of War 2’ raises the bar even further with the amazing technological advances of Unreal Engine 3, delivering a bigger, badder, and more intense experience as the story continues.”

Gears of War 2 received high ratings from Metacritic. It received a Metascore of 93 and a User Score of 7.7 from the website. One of the critics featured on the site, Gameplayer, specifically praised the pacing of Gears of War 2, saying that it is “a lesson in masterful pacing.” PGNx Media, meanwhile, described this Xbox Live Games with Gold free title as a “stellar shooting game,” further claiming that “it is easily one of the best games of the year.”

SeanH, one of the users whose review was featured in Metacritic shared that Gears of War 2 delivered “absolutely everything” that he was searching for, citing the game’s excellent story, impressive multiplayer, and amount of graphic violence.

Watch one of the trailers released for Gears of War 2 below, posted on Machinima’s official Youtube channel:

Using the latest console from Microsoft, XB1 owners can also play the free Xbox 360 titles that are part of the February list of free games for the month of February. This is because of Microsoft’s Backward Compatibility, a feature that lets gamers play Xbox 360 games on Xbox One without having to pay anything. There are more than a hundred titles that support Backwards Compatibility, allowing Xbox One owners to experience the “greatest games lineup in Xbox history,” the official Xbox website claimed.

Moreover, more treats are available for Xbox One users. Those with Xbox Live Gold membership are also eligible to get the XB1 title Styx: Master of Shadows for free. This offer is open now until March 15. It joins Hand of Fate as free Xbox One games for Xbox Live Gold members this month.

Styx: Master of Shadow, which is regularly priced at $29.99, is an action and adventure video game published by Focus Home Interactive. Particularly, this free title for Xbox Live Gold members is “an infiltration game with RPG elements taking place in a dark fantasy universe,” its product page of official Xbox Store revealed.

In the game, the players will have to lead Styx, the goblin assassin, through the Tower of Akenash where the World Tree can be found. The World Tree is the source of Amber, described as the “powerful and magical golden sap.” Amber is hanging around “through the shadows with aide of a host of special abilities refined throughout Styx’s 200 years of history,” the description also noted.

Below is @MajorNelson’s recent Twitter post about the new Games with Gold titles available for free starting this mid-February.

[Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images]