Xbox Live! Arcade download service takes shape

New screenshots of Microsoft's mini-game menu

Posted by Staff
As online console gaming continues its gradual clamber on the arduous path to international popularity, Microsoft has issued a batch of screenshots from yet another reason to jump on the broadband-wagon - Xbox Live! Arcade. Due for launch this autumn, XBL Arcade is an online-only service that allows Live! subscribers to download a plethora of assorted mini-games.

There are all sorts of titles planned for the system, many of which closely resemble classic 16-bit and arcade games of yesteryear. Divided into 7 categories, the main download screen will offer Live! Arcadeers various nuggets from the following genres: Retro Arcade, Action Arcade, Card & Board Games, Puzzle & Trivia, Social Sports, Strategy & Sims and New Releases.

The veritable smorgasbord of games includes titles such as Hexic (a Tetris type puzzler), Hamster Ball (with more than a passing resemblance to Monkey Ball), Trade Winds (a naval strategy/sim akin to Sea Trader on the GBA) and plenty of more generic ideas like billiards, cards, bowling, golf, Mahjong, etc.

Assuming that Microsoft can maintain a steady flow of fresh downloadable content for the Live! Arcade service, whilst also meeting satisfactory standards of production, it should rapidly gain favour with both hardcore retro-heads and casual gamers alike.

Expect more Live! Arcade news as soon as it breaks. Until then, here's a peek at some of the first screenshots.


Zippy1979 30 Jun 2004 19:49
Anyone know if Live! arcade is going to be free to existing subscribers or an extra fee?
mrnull 30 Jun 2004 21:12
>Anyone know if Live! arcade is going to be free
>to existing subscribers or an extra fee?

That's EXACTLY what I was wondering. Evan k-rappy games take money to develop and BW to distribute. If they are free then I think it's an amazing move. I know my Dad would dig playing solitare on my giant green VCR! Hopefully these card games will have online play as well.

Right here... Join my spades clan 1337 T34B4GG3r5!

jessestylex 1 Jul 2004 03:40
The Arcade download will be free, it'll come with Demos of the games, but the whole games will have to be bought. MS has said some games though could be free.

Posting of new comments is now locked for this page.