The April system update is rolling out today, bringing you another round of new features that will make your favorite Xbox One experiences even better. Whether you want easier access to game content, troubleshooting help with party chat or improved achievement notifications, we’ve got something for everyone this month.
Check out the full list of features rolling out below:
• Party chat improvements – Additional icons and notifications within the party chat experience to help you understand your connection and microphone status. The party app will help you get your microphone enabled and show you when privacy settings or networking issues are blocking communication with particular party members.
• Game hub links – You’ll see activity feed items when any of your friends follow a game, and you’ll also be able to get back to a game’s hub from activity feed posts related to the game – including feed items about the game’s achievements, game clips and screenshots.
• Achievement notifications – With this update, you’ll also see the achievement’s description in the notification so you know what you did to earn this achievement without having to open the achievements app.
• What’s On – The What’s On area is now available for Xbox One users in the U.S., Canada, and the UK. In it, you’ll find links to popular videos, games, movies, TV shows, game broadcasts and clips, along with Trending TV shows if you have configured OneGuide for your Xbox One console.
We are keeping voice messaging and dedicated servers for party chat in preview as we continue to fine-tune them based on feedback from preview program members.
We have more great features coming your way on Xbox One, so please continue to send us your feedback and stay tuned for more details.
Game Description: Stealth Inc. 2: A Game of Clones is a puzzle platformer where you play the role of a clone escaping a sinister and high-tech testing facility. Stealth Inc. 2 tests both your brain and your reflexes over 60 varied levels linked together by a sprawling and detailed overworld.
Game Description: The legendary Major League Baseball franchise returns to the diamond. Master the art of hitting and fielding with 2-button retro controls or control the movement of your pitch from start to finish. Includes Season, Postseason & Exhibition Modes and authentic ballparks with unique characteristics from every Major League Baseball club. Make History.
Game Description: Prepare yourself for pixel perfect physics, photo-realistic graphics and super detailed visuals in this truly immersive representation of the sport. Practice, spectate and play live matches seamlessly online, compete in Leagues, share, challenge and create epic trickshots within our exclusive Trickshot Editor, enroll in the Pool Nation Cup, explore our unique rule set customization tool and re-discover this much-loved sport.
Game Description: Evolved includes all of the great content & features from Geometry Wars 3: Dimensions and more. Over 100 total levels including 40 all-new levels. Classic mode has reimagined versions of 6 levels from Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved and Retro Evolved 2. 15 3D grids including 5 all-new and 12 battle modes including Pacifism, King, Claustrophobia and 4 all-new modes. 5 unique companion drones including Attack, Collector, Ram, Snipe and the all-new Sweep drone. Cooperative and Online Competitive Multiplayer modes complete with community and friend leaderboards.
NOTE: DO NOT purchase this if you already own Geometry Wars 3: Dimensions – the new content will be included when the game updates to the latest version.
Game Description: Neverwinter is the premier Dungeons & Dragons MMORPG experience, featuring fast-paced combat and epic dungeons. Explore the vast city of Neverwinter and its surrounding regions, battle its many enemies, and be a part of Forgotten Realms history. Xbox One players can also use their Xbox One friends list to find and party up with others as they explore iconic locations of the Dungeons & Dragons universe.
Game Description: This standalone expansion will be available at no additional cost until April 10, 2015 (regular price is $9.99 ERP). The next great automotive adventure begins with the Forza Horizon 2 Presents Fast & Furious standalone expansion for Xbox One! For the first time ever, the Forza experience of thrilling driving and amazing cars is combining with the unstoppable Fast & Furious movie franchise to create an original adventure filled with adrenaline-fueled automotive action.
Game Description: Many dangers await Abe on his journey to discover his people’s heritage. Built from the ground up, enjoy breathtaking visuals, enhanced audio and improved, deeper gameplay as New ‘n’ Tasty reignites the original Oddworld game using the latest next-generation technology.
You may have noticed a few new features that rolled out to preview over the weekend, including game hub links and more detailed achievement notifications. Now this week, we’re bringing even more features to Xbox One in Preview, making it easier to keep in touch with friends on Xbox One or Xbox 360.
Check out the list below for features in the April preview update that are starting to roll out tonight:
Voice messages – Xbox One preview program members will be able to compose and playback voice messages in the messages app when snapped on Xbox One. Quickly and easily record audio to send to your friends or others through your snapped messages app accessed through a simple quick double tap of the Xbox button. Additionally, voice messages can be exchanged between Xbox 360 and Xbox One consoles.
Dedicated servers for party chat – We’re enhancing party chat with dedicated chat relay servers that will enable Xbox One owners that may have historically had NAT issues to party chat more reliably. Parties where players are unable to form direct peer-to-peer connections for party chat will automatically leverage dedicated server infrastructure to relay traffic. This service is only enabled for parties where one or more members are previewing the April system update.
What’s On – The Xbox engineering team is continuing to experiment with the What’s On area, which highlights popular videos, movies, TV shows and game broadcasts. We’re continuing to test different experiences for preview members in the U.S. and this month, the preview of this feature is being expanded to Canada and the UK as well.
For the month of April, Xbox Live Gold members will receive six new free games (double the normal amount) on Xbox One and Xbox 360 as part of the Games with Gold program.
On Xbox One, Xbox Live Gold members can download Pool Nation FX ($13.99 ERP) AND Child of Light ($14.99 ERP) for free during the month of April.
On Xbox 360, starting Wednesday, April 1st, Gears of War Judgement ($19.99 ERP) and Terraria ($14.99 ERP) will be free for Xbox Live Gold members through April 15th. Then on April 16th, Xbox Live Gold Members can download Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag ($19.99 ERP) and Army of Two The Devil’s Cartel ($19.99 ERP) for free through April 30th.
Read more about April Games with Gold titles over at Xbox Wire.
*Titles are available as free downloads for qualifying Xbox Live Gold members in all markets where Xbox Live is available. Some regions may offer different titles depending on market availability.
Game Description: Slender: The Arrival is the official video game adaptation of Slender Man, re-created from Mark Hadley’s original nerve-shattering sensation. Developed in collaboration with Blue Isle Studios, The Arrival features a brand new storyline, improved visuals, great replay value, and most importantly, survival horror at its best.
Slender: The Arrival is 30% off for Xbox Live Gold members until 30 March 06 April. Please note: prices and availability are subject to change and may vary by region.
Game Description: Game of Thrones – A Telltale Games Series is a six part episodic game series set in the world of HBO’s groundbreaking TV show and Episode 3 is now available. This new story tells of House Forrester, a noble family from the north of Westeros, loyal to the Starks of Winterfell. Caught up in the events surrounding the War of the Five Kings, they are thrown into a maelstrom of bloody warfare, revenge, intrigue, and horror as they fight to survive while the seven kingdoms tear themselves apart.
Looking for new ways to brighten your blocky Minecraft world? The Pattern Texture Pack could be just what you need.
Now available for all Minecraft console editions for $0.99 USD, the Pattern Texture Pack allows players to decorate their Minecraft worlds with bright colors, beautiful patterns and knitted animals.The pack also provides a pattern-themed UI and stylized texture set that can be applied to new or previously created Minecraft worlds.
Game Description: Life is Strange is a five part episodic game that sets out to revolutionize story-based choice and consequence games by allowing the player to rewind time and affect the past, present and future. In Episode 2, Max starts to experiment with her power and begins to wonder if it is related to her visions or the weird snow from the day before. But life goes on in Blackwell Academy and a certain viral video has become a major topic of discussion.
Game Description: Borderlands: The Handsome Collection includes the definitive versions of both Borderlands 2 and Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel, built specifically for next-gen consoles. For the first time in the franchise’s history, play four-player split screen on a single television, all in high definition. Includes 2 games and all bonus add-on content, adding hundreds of hours of gameplay.
EA Access members had the opportunity to play Battlefield Hardline before it officially launched as well as the chance to win prizes in the Play and Win sweepstakes. Now that the game is out and the contest is over, you have another opportunity to win this custom Nerdist Xbox One controller (and more).
How do you enter for a chance to win?
Simple. All you have to do is leave a comment below to this post answering the following question:
What is your favorite Battlefield game, preferred class and typical loadout?
Note: If you do not have an e-mail address or Twitter name associated with your Disqus login, you must include this information in your comment to be eligible. Any winner who does not respond to my notification within 72 hours will forfeit the prize. For faster notification, follow me on Twitter where I can DM you if you won. Only comments received at www.majornelson.com will be considered.
UPDATED: Congratulations to all of the winners – they have been notified via email.
This month, we’re rolling out updates to our Xbox One Preview program members in two waves, with the first set coming today and more to come next week. Check out the list below for features in this first April system update preview that is starting to roll out this afternoon:
Party chat improvements – Party chat is being improved with troubleshooting guidance for Xbox One owners. The Party App will help you get your microphone enabled and show you when privacy settings or networking issues are blocking communication with particular party members.
Game hub links – Members can more easily discover game hub content from activity feed items. You’ll see activity feed items when any of your friends follow a game, and you’ll also be able to get back to a game’s hub from activity feed posts related to the game – including feed items about the game’s achievements, game clips and screenshots. Finally, we’ve added a link to game hubs from the game’s page in the achievements app.
Achievement notifications – With this preview release, you’ll also see the achievement’s description in the notification so you know what you did to earn this achievement without having to open the achievements app. If you do choose to open up the notification to see the achievement details, we’ve also made some performance improvements to make loading the achievements app from a notification faster.
Stay tuned next week for the second wave with even more great features coming to Xbox One Preview program members. As always, thanks for your feedback.
Game Description: Ziggurat is a combination of First Person Shooter and Rogue-LITE. Become a neophyte sorcerer, and get ready for your rite of passage: Enter the labyrinth and face dangerous challenges to prove your worth and become a powerful wizard! The game focuses on fast-paced first person shooting, with an old-school vibe, and updated handling and game mechanics.