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Here's What Happened To The Lucky Few Who Got Fallout 4 For Free By Accident

Fallout 4
(Image credit: Bethesda)

Microsoft mistakenly updated the Xbox store for Fallout 4. Why was it a mistake? Because they set the price to $0. As a result, a bunch of people download Fallout 4 for free, but they didn't get to keep it.

According to VG 24/7, Microsoft mistakenly set the price of Fallout 4 and its accompanying DLC for the Xbox One to $0. A few gamers people up downloading the game for absolutely nothing, thinking that the game was being handed out for free as part of a promotion from Blizzard for the upcoming E3 press conference set to take place this Sunday.

However, this was not a promotion and Fallout 4 was not intended to be given away for free. It was actually a massive mistake on the end of the Microsoft Store. Nevertheless, a bunch of gamers grabbed it anyway only to find out that they couldn't keep it.

Microsoft has been deactivating the Fallout 4 licenses remotely, so anyone who downloaded the game for free will find that it's no longer in their library. A representative mentioned to Neowin,

Those customers who were able to get the Fallout 4 deluxe edition for free will [have the game] be removed under their licenses automatically.

To compensate for this somewhat major hiccup involving Fallout 4, Microsoft decided to give gamers a $10 voucher for use on the Microsoft Store. Gamers will have an entire year to make use of the $10 voucher as a way for them to apologize about letting people gain access to Fallout 4 for free and then taking it away.

The comment section on VG 24/7 reveals that this is one of the major worries a lot of people have about digital distribution: the fact that a publisher or developer can easily filter through accounts and remove digital licenses at the click of a button. It makes it very difficult to convince gamers to give up their physical copies and go all-in on the digital front when things like this happen.

In this particular case, customers didn't do anything wrong, they just took advantage of a mistake on Microsoft's end. In a way, you could say they're getting something out of it with the $10 voucher, but also at the same time it's scary that the publisher can simply enter into a user's account, select the game and remove it from the library.

This has happened a couple of times with Steam games, where products no longer operating were automatically removed from the user's library. It's a rare occurrence but it still doesn't sit well with most gamers.

In this particular case, Microsoft is attempting to make amends for their mistake involving Fallout 4 by issuing the voucher. Gamers can expect the $10 voucher to arrive in their accounts no later than the end of June. As mentioned, those who get the $10 will have up to a year to use it before it expires.

Will Usher

Staff Writer at CinemaBlend.