XBL Content Summary for the Holidays [UPDATE]

By Rebecca Smith,
Edit: We've received word of another XBLA delisting. The text has been amended below.

Original Story

Over the holiday period the newshounds take the time to sit back and relax with family and friends. During this time, the regular weekly articles fall by the wayside and very few news headlines make it to the front page. The result of the weekly article downtime is that we end up with a one-off article like this one. Today we're bringing a list of Xbox One games and Xbox 360 DLC add-ons that were released between December 23rd and January 1st. We've also got a list of Windows Phone games and Windows 8 games to be released from December 20th until today. Just to remind people, we are currently unable to report on Xbox One DLC or demos as they are currently only available to download through the Xbox One console. Until Microsoft sees fit to integrate this content into Xbox.com, this will not change any time soon.

Before we move on to the new content, we bring the bad news of a few delistings. Following the eventual removal of Skullgirls following contract issues between Autumn Games and their publisher Konami, more games have disappeared from the same publisher. Both The Simpsons Arcade and X-Men Arcade have now been removed from the Games Store. Although no reason has been given, we believe that this is due to licensing issues. Another old sports game has also bitten the dust. Although players can download the demo for MLB Stickball, the full game has been removed from the Games Store. A reason for this removal has not been given either, but this is more likely to do with the gradual decrease in the number of purchases over the five years since the game's release.

Back to the good news. Here is the new content:

Xbox One Games

Halo: Spartan Assault (Xbox One)
Size: 2.53 GB
Price: US$14.99 / £11.99 / €14.99 / AU$19.95
Halo: Spartan Assault is a fast paced top-down shooter set during the timeline between “Halo 3” and “Halo 4,” progress your Spartan career as you engage in over 30 exciting Campaign missions using many of favorite Halo weapons, vehicles and armor abilities. Team-up on Xbox Live and fight with a friend against waves of the nightmarish Flood in the all-new online co-op multiplayer mode.
Xbox 360 Retail DLC without Achievements

Sniper: Ghost Warrior 2
• "Sniper Ghost Warrior 2 - Gold" – US$14.99 / £9.99 / €14.39 / AU$14.95
Experience the full spectrum of sniper warfare with this premium DLC pack for Sniper Ghost Warrior 2
XBLA DLC without Achievements

Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition
• "Marvel Avengers Skin Pack" – US$2.99 / £1.99 / €2.85 / AU$2.95 / ¥300
Step into Minecraft dressed as one of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes (or powerful villains) with this incredible Skin Pack, featuring core team members from Marvel’s Avengers including Iron Man, Captain America, Hulk, Thor, and many more iconic characters from the Marvel Universe.
Free Trial: http://marketplace.xbox.com/Product/Marvel-Avengers-Skin-Pac...

Windows 8 Games

Cold Alley (Windows) - needs Windows 8.1
Size: 934 MB
Price: US$6.99 / £4.99 / €5.99 / AU$6.99 / ¥550
With an extensive single player campaign and a huge set of skirmish modes, the non-stop action will keep you on the edge of your seat!
Travel back in time to experience the unwritten history of covert operations. Master over a dozen models of aircraft as you take part in the race for jet fighter domination.

Unparalleled visuals, audio, and special effects including: bump mapping, realistic atmospheric effects, volumetric clouds, sun glare, day & night transitions and more!
After the campaign, hone your skills with Dogfight Missions, Survival, Free for All, Team Deathmatch, Capture the Flag, and Defend the Base, with new game modes to come in future updates!
Take off and land on landing strips and aircraft carriers, soar through fully recreated cities with realistic weather, and contend with accurate atmospheric effects with aerial perspective, all from the interactive cockpits of a variety of highly detailed jet aircraft.

Cold Alley is designed for players of all generations and skill levels, whether veteran or novice. Take full control, or leave the flying to the auto-pilot while you fire missiles and issue squadron commands!
Disney The Little Mermaid: Undersea Treasures! (Windows) - needs Windows 8.1
Size: 117.1 MB
Price: FREE
Explore the site of an old shipwreck at the bottom of the sea in this exciting preview of The Little Mermaid: Undersea Treasures! Search for lost items from the mysterious human world above the waves. Find each treasure quickly to earn bonus points and claim a place on the leaderboard! Check back often for more updates to Undersea Treasures, including the first full episode of this adventure-filled prequel to the classic Disney film.
Microsoft Bingo (Windows) - needs Windows 8.1, Canada only
Size: 138.3 MB
Price: FREE

Dust off your daubers. Microsoft Bingo is here!

With a free-to-play, travel-themed take on a classic game, Bingo just got a whole lot better.

See the world:
Travel the globe as you play your way through a variety of exotic locales and extraordinary settings. From Parisian cafés to the silvery waves of the Great Barrier Reef, Microsoft Bingo lets you see the sights as you fill your card. Earn Flight Points to level up and unlock exciting new locations to visit. Play in each location to collect an array of souvenirs, earning you special awards as you complete your souvenir collections.

Join the community:
Place bets on specific numbers on the Power Card prior to matches. Match your daubs to your Power Card picks during a round to get a Power Bingo! With each Power Bingo awarded, the community comes one step closer to its weekly goal. Help your fellow players hit the weekly goal and a special reward is yours for the taking!

Earn Prizes:
With every feat you accomplish in Microsoft Bingo, from calling a Bingo to making a winning bet on a Power Card, you'll earn special prizes in the form of Luggage. Each piece of Luggage holds a surprise just waiting to be unlocked, provided you have a key…
Windows Phone Games

Final Fantasy III (WP)
Size: 451 MB
Price: US$15.99 / £11.99 / €14.49 / AU$16.99 / ¥1380
Final Fantasy III — now on Windows Phone!

First released in 1990, Final Fantasy III was the first title in the Final Fantasy series to become a million-seller, establishing once and for all that Square Enix's classic RPG saga was here to stay.
The full 3D remake released in 2006 duplicated the original's success, selling over a million copies worldwide.

Final Fantasy III was a hallmark of innovation for the entire series, from the job system that lets characters change classes at any time to the ability to summon powerful creatures such as Shiva and Bahamut.

When darkness falls and the land is robbed of light, four youths are chosen by the crystals to set forth on a journey to save the world.
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Microsoft Mahjong (WP) - WP8 only
Size: 33 MB
Price: FREE
Microsoft Mahjong is the classic matching game updated with beautiful imagery, intuitive controls, and all the features that fans of mahjong have come to expect.

Enjoy gorgeous graphics and relaxing sounds with three different themes to choose from. Complete multiple puzzles at three levels of difficulty—perfect for mahjong beginners and experts alike. With an improved Undo system, players have the option of rewinding to fix mistakes.

Xbox LIVE Integration
Log in with your Xbox LIVE account to earn achievements, compete with your friends, submit your scores to the leaderboards, and track your personal gameplay statistics. Microsoft Solitaire Collection's new Play, Pause, Resume feature lets you pause your game, and resume it on any compatible device — all without missing a beat!
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Microsoft Minesweeper (WP) - WP8 only
Size: 28 MB
Price: FREE
Play the logic game you know and love, now with updated graphics and sound. Play with a touch of your finger to mark the locations of all the mines without uncovering any of them! Start with an Easy puzzle and work your way up to Expert.

Xbox LIVE Integration
Log in with your Xbox LIVE account to earn achievements, compete with your friends, submit your scores to the leaderboards, and track your personal gameplay statistics. Microsoft Solitaire Collection's new Play, Pause, Resume feature lets you pause your game, and resume it on any compatible device — all without missing a beat!
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Microsoft Solitaire Collection (WP) - WP8 only
Size: 42 MB
Price: FREE
Solitaire remains the most-played computer game of all time, and for good reason. Simple rules and straightforward gameplay make it easy to pick up for anyone. Just focus on clearing out of the cards from the table, or try to increase your score to rival your friends.

Solitaire has been part of Windows for more than 20 years, and The Microsoft Solitaire Collection makes it the best experience to date with five different card games in one:

This version is the timeless classic that many people just call "Solitaire". Try to clear all the cards from the table using traditional scoring or the popular Vegas scoring system.

Use four extra cells to move cards around as you try to clear all cards from the table. More strategic than the Klondike version, FreeCell rewards players who think several moves ahead.

Eight columns of cards await your attempts to clear them with the fewest moves possible. Start out playing with a single suit until you’re comfortable, and then see how you fare when using two or even all four suits in a game.

Select cards in a sequence, either up or down, to earn points. How many boards can you clear before you run out of deals?

Pair two cards that add up to 13 in order to clear them. Try to reach the top of the pyramid. See how high you score in this deceptively simple and highly addictive card game that continues to increase in popularity!

Xbox Integration
Log in with your Xbox account to earn achievements, compete with your friends, submit your scores to the leaderboards, and track your personal gameplay statistics. Microsoft Solitaire Collection's new Play, Pause, Resume feature lets you pause your game, and resume it on any compatible device — all without missing a beat!
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Rabbids Big Bang (WP) - WP8 only
Size: 41 MB
Price: US$0.99 / £0.79 / €0.99 / AU$0.99 / ¥90
Forget the Milky Way! This is the Rabbids Way!
Rabbids Big Bang is the first Rabbids physic-based game on mobile devices that lets you pilot a Rabbid in space with the tip of your finger!

* Use a bat to thrust a Rabbid into space…
* … and control its trajectory using the jetpack and planet gravity.
* Play tactically as your fuel will drain when you boost.
* Don’t crash into the planets... unless you’re asked to!

* Explore 10 different wacky galaxies each of them offering 15 missions.
* Bounce on Space Duckies, hit Space Cows, or fly your Rabbid to the Sun.
* Use our ranking system to progress with your Rabbid and unlock achievements.

* Collection coins to upgrade the jetpack and increase its power.
* Customize your Rabbid with new helmets, bats and more for the funniest looks.
* Equip your Rabbid with special items and master the galaxy of fun!

Space cows, cheese planets, UFOs… Your Rabbid will have more than one occasion to scream Bwaaah…and so will you!
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Temple Run 2 (WP) - WP8 only
Size: 45 MB
Price: FREE
The sequel to the smash hit phenomenon that took the world by storm!

Temple Run redefined mobile gaming. Now get more of the exhilarating running, jumping, turning and sliding you love in Temple Run 2!

Navigate perilous cliffs, zip lines, mines and forests as you try to escape with the cursed idol. How far can you run?!


* Beautiful new graphics
* Gorgeous new organic environments
* New obstacles
* More powerups
* More achievements
* Special powers for each character
* Bigger monkey!!!
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Things will return to normal within the next few days with separate articles for Windows Phone titles and other XBL Content. As for the Windows 8 titles, well I guess that we'll have to see what the future brings.
Rebecca Smith
Written by Rebecca Smith
Rebecca is the Newshound Manager at TrueGaming Network. She has been contributing articles since 2010, especially those that involve intimidatingly long lists. When not writing news, she works in an independent game shop so that she can spend all day talking about games too. She'll occasionally go outside.
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