Thief Side image

Close Out an Awesome Year with December’s Games with Gold

If you’re into spending your holidays on grand adventures without spending a dime of your hard-earned cash, then Games with Gold has your back! In 2015 alone, Xbox Live Gold members have saved over $1000 with Games with Gold on Xbox One and Xbox 360. It’s only getting better in 2016 now that Xbox One members get double the free games every month with Backward Compatibility. With Xbox One Backward Compatibility play multiplayer with your friends no matter which console they’re on and enjoy Xbox 360 games with the advanced features of your Xbox One, including Game DVR, Screenshots, and in-home streaming to Windows 10. Xbox One owners can download their free Xbox 360 Games with Gold from or from their Xbox 360 console.

In December on Xbox One, we kick things off with epic action-role-playing game The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing. There’s plenty of gameplay at your fingertips from the get-go here, combining combat, character development, a deep story, and plenty of deadly action in a single package. Then we move on to Thief, the blockbuster reboot of the beloved action-stealth series – and it challenges your mind as much as your nerves as you take on tough traps and merciless guards.

On Xbox 360 and Xbox One with Backward Compatibility, Games with Gold offers up CastleStorm to start the holiday season. A tower defense title with a twist, CastleStorm’s colorful graphics and charming aesthetic will keep any player engaged for hours on end. And when those hours are finished, Xbox 360 gamers still get another free title in Sacred 3, an exciting hack-and-slash medieval fantasy title with four-player cooperative modes both online and off – so you can, you know, chop bad guys up with your friends. And as an extra gift for the holidays Gold members can get Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising free the second half of the month. What’s not to like!

As usual, all games are available only for a limited time, as part of the ongoing Games with Gold program – so don’t let the holiday festivities slow you down. Get playing!

* The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing ($14.99 ERP): Available from December 1-31 on Xbox One

* Thief ($29.99 ERP): Available from December 16-January 15 on Xbox One

* CastleStorm ($9.99 ERP): Available from December 1-15 on Xbox 360

* Sacred 3 ($19.99 ERP): Available from December 16-31 on Xbox 360

* Bonus: Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising ($9.99 ERP): Available from December 16-31 on Xbox 360

The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing might be a mouthful of a title, but it’s actually a very simple game to get into – although one with a ton of layers, viewed from an isometric, top-down perspective. You play the title character, and your job is to kick some monster butt while leveling up your weapons, your abilities, and yourself along the way. If you enjoyed any of the games in the Diablo series, or have a penchant for Eastern European mythology, you’ll definitely dig The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing.

Thief is set in a steampunk/Gothic setting. You are Garrett, the Master Thief. Step into the silent shoes of Garrett, a dark and solitary thief with an unrivalled set of skills. The most challenging heists, the most inaccessible loot, the best kept secrets: nothing is out of your reach. Explore the sick and troubled City, from its shady back alleys to the heights of its rooftops. Sneak through the streets, infiltrate heavily-guarded mansions and lurk in every dark corner… unnoticed and unsanctioned. Choose your approach and use Garrett’s arsenal to take down guards silently with your blackjack, use multiple arrow types to manipulate your environment and the enemies within them or use your newly acquired focus abilities to increase the effectiveness of your thieving skills. What kind of Master Thief will you be?

For Xbox 360, CastleStorm combines the best elements of tower defense titles like Kingdom Rush and artillery attack titles like Angry Birds. It’s a raucous, colorful medieval romp through multiple levels of physics-based destruction. Vikings take on Knights, and you get to choose which side you want to be on; either way, you’ll get to build your own castle, stock it with defenses, and repel invaders. Or, hire and deploy a force of fearsome raider to take the castle down! You’ll need to mix and match the right kinds of fighters to make sure they can counteract any defenses that you may face. It’ll take guts and some cleverness to get through all the many levels of this highly rated title.

Also for Xbox 360, Games with Gold is giving away Sacred 3. Third in the extremely popular brawler/strategy series, Sacred 3 focuses on cooperative gameplay (both local and online play are available), wherein you choose from a series of characters with unique sets of skills and abilities. They must work together to keep from getting overwhelmed by waves of foes, and can combine their skills in unique ways to solve challenges. Written with a comedic twist, Sacred 3 offers as many laughs as it does moments of action – so look forward to thrills and spills as you swash plenty of buckles with this one!

Finally, for Xbox 360, Games with Gold is adding an extra free game for the holidays Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising. Taking gamers as close to war as they’ll ever want to get, Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising is a heart pounding military simulator delivering a total combat experience. The game challenges players to survive the chaos and rapidly evolving situations of modern warfare on an exotic island location. Players experience the intensity, diversity and claustrophobia of a modern conflict from the unique perspectives of an infantry marine, a helicopter pilot, a Special Forces officer or a tank commander. A great way to end the year.

Check out the full details on our Games with Gold program, and make sure you get in on the action while you can!

* Titles are available as free downloads for a limited time, for qualifying paid Xbox Live Gold members in all markets where Xbox Live is available. Some regions may offer different titles depending on market availability. See Major Nelson’s blog for additional details.