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Microsoft has announced the Games with Gold lineup for January, a collection of titles that would have made more sense popping up in October rather than ringing in the new year. Still, free games are free games, so get ready to enjoy four offerings spread across the Xbox 360 and Xbox One.
As noted above, the upcoming Games with Gold would have felt much more at home were they arriving during the same month as Halloween. You're slaying monsters in one of the games, the undead in another, wearing masks in the third, and the fourth has the word "Underworld" in its title.
While all PlayStation Plus titles come out on the first Tuesday of the month, Microsoft still likes to stagger their Gold entries. So do your best to keep track of what is available when and, if something catches your eye, be sure to snag it before the next rotation.
We'll start with the Xbox One, where Gold members can get their hands on The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing III and ZOMBI. The former will be available from Jan. 1-31 while the latter can be your from Jan. 16 -- Feb. 15.
Van Helsing is an isometric adventure game clearly inspired by the Diablo series. You'll run around a bunch of lush environments laying waste to monsters using either your melee attacks or the various abilities you gain throughout the game. ZOMBI, on the other hand, is set in London following a zombie outbreak. You'll be on a quest to survive in first-person, with a cool twist being that, if you die, you respawn as a new character. The hook is that you've got to find your old character, now a member of the undead legions, and kill them if you want to get your gear back.
Over to the Xbox 360 Games with Gold roster and we've got Tomb Raider: Underworld and the original Army of Two. That first game can be yours from Jan. 1-15, while the second is only available from Jan. 16-31. As a reminder, backwards compatibility means that both can also be played on the Xbox One, so you can download all four titles on that particular console if you feel so inclined.
Tomb Raider Underworld basically closed out the "old" adventures of Lara Croft, with the rebooted Tomb Raider games taking the series in a more realistic direction. Army of Two is a fun third-person shooter that, while crass and immature, offers some fun gunplay. Sadly, the servers are no longer active on this game, so you'll probably just have to tackle the terrorists as an army of one. But that's what AI is for!
So there's your lineup for January. Maybe not the most mind-blowing roster, but not a terrible way to kick off 2018. Share your thoughts on the new Games with Gold offerings in the comments below.