Players of ‘Gears of War: Ultimate Edition’ Will Get All Previous Series Games Free

By August 3, 2015

Later this month, Microsoft will release the Gears of War: Ultimate Edition exclusively on Xbox One, remastering the series’ original game for the current generation and at higher resolutions. Players who partake of this version of the game have something else to look forward to, though: namely, every other game in the series.

According to an official release from Xbox Wire, Xbox One owners who play Gears of War: Ultimate Edition between August 25th and December 31st will automatically unlock all four previous Gears games free of charge through the newly-announced backward compatibility feature, allowing Xbox One owners to play certain Xbox 360 titles on their newer console. While all four games will unlock for people who don’t already own them, there’s still some good news for people who already own all of the previous games in the series either digitally or physically. From the announcement:

All Gears of War titles will be supported on Backward Compatibility when it launches publicly this fall. This means if you own Gears of War, Gears of War 2, Gears of War 3 or Gears of War: Judgment on Xbox 360, you’ll be able to play them on your Xbox One and utilize some of your favorite next-gen features like Game DVR, Snap, screenshots and more. You can even keep all your previously-saved files, game add-ons, achievements and play with friends on Xbox Live no matter which Xbox console they’re on. For those of you in the Xbox One preview program who just can’t wait, the original Gears of War is available today in Backward Compatibility.

Although initially believed to be impossible for the latest Microsoft console, Xbox head Phil Spencer announced the arrival of backward compatibility to Xbox One this year at E3. Xbox engineers made it possible by creating an emulated shell of the entire Xbox 360 operating system to run inside the Xbox One, making it a fairly simple process to port a game over to allow it to run on an Xbox One. The only thing preventing the release of certain titles into the program are any legal limitations imposed by the developers and publishers of certain games, but Microsoft previously stated that they would be making the entire first-party lineup of titles — including franchises like Gears and Halo — available via backward compatibility.

This is certainly one department where the Xbox One seems to have a leg up on the direct competition at Sony. Since both Xbox One and Xbox 360 draw from one unified user account, digital games ported to the Xbox One do not have to be purchased again if you already own them on Xbox 360. Sony’s form of backward compatibility is through the “PlayStation Now” streaming service, which requires players to pay a rental or subscription fee to play PS3 games on a PS4 even if they’ve already purchased those games before.

For more on Gears of War and Xbox One as news develops further, keep it locked on GeekNation!

Chris Clow
As a former comics retailer at a store in the Pacific Northwest, Chris Clow is an enormous sci-fi, comics, and film geek. He is a freelance contributor, reviewer, podcaster, and overall geek to GeekNation,, The Huffington Post, and He also hosts the monthly Comics on Consoles broadcast and podcast. Check out his blog, and follow him on Twitter @ChrisClow.