Microsoft’s backwards compatibility program, among others, is one of the things that really makes the platform shine over its most direct competitors. Sony has some options in that department for its players, but nothing nearly as good. As Microsoft continues to grow the list of older titles playable on its current gen hardware to a near countless number at this point, Sony’s options in this regard are looking worse by the day.

And it certainly doesn’t look like its going to be getting any better for PlayStation at this point. Microsoft just announced that it is adding a bunch of previous generation Halo titles to the Xbox Ones backwards compatibility list…

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Starting today, Halo 3, Halo 3: ODST, Halo 4, and Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary are all now playable on Xbox One and Xbox One S. Microsoft says all of these games will be playable on Xbox One X down the line.

While just about all of these titles have already been available to play on Xbox One in some way or other, only gamers that bought into some of the re-releases and the Master Chief Collection were afforded the opportunity.

If you already own digital copies of these games, you’ll be able to download them all directly from the Xbox Marketplace. Although we will see a digital release soon, Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary has only ever been available in disc form. And don’t worry, Microsoft made all of the DLC for these games completely free a few months back, so just grab those as well and you’re ready to go.

While you’ll still need to be an Xbox Live Gold member, online play is available here with both Xbox One and 360 gamers.

While it would have been nice to see Halo 2: Anniversary included as part of this new batch of backwards compatible titles, it’s a little more complicated than that in this case. It did appear in the Halo: Master Chief Collection, but the game never actually released on Xbox 360 after debuting in 2004. However, Microsoft did say we can expect to see original Xbox games jump in to the mix sometime later this year (digital and physical), so it is certainly still a possibility to see a stand-alone Halo 2 on current generation hardware at some point.

Either way, anytime Microsoft adds new titles to the Xbox One S (and soon to be Xbox One X) backwards compatibility program, it is great for gamers. Speaking of its latest hardware, Xbox One X standard edition consoles are now up for pre-order at all major retailers.

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