Games

Update: As of 7 pm ET, the MCC patch is now available and comes in at 1437 MB in size. Thanks, Thomas W., and others!

343 Industries, the developers behind Halo, have published the massive changelog that's coming in today's patch update to The Master Chief Collection.

The game launched last week but has had severe matchmaking issues for the majority of players. A patch was scheduled for yesterday but was delayed until today (11/20). Today's patch should alleviate all issues that resulted in extended matchmaking times and low matchmaking success rates. Plus there's a bunch of fixes for the different campaigns and a few UI tweaks.

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Last month, a unique little puzzle platformer called Chronology made its way to Windows Phone. Chronology wowed us with its time-traveling mechanics that allow players to travel back and forth between time and even stop it, all in the name of solving puzzles and saving the world. It also features beautiful art and music.

Denmark-based developer Osao Games recently released a Windows 8 version of Chronology, and has even been thoughtful enough to make it an in-app purchase. I took advantage of that and played the Windows Phone, Windows 8, and Steam versions of the game (the latter is a separate purchase), in order to bring you this in-depth review.

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Amazing Brick is a simple Windows Phone game that calls upon you to bounce a brick up through a maze of portals while avoiding obstacles that are placed along the way.

The game is another simple title in the Windows Phone Store that has plenty of challenge. Amazing Brick also requires a little patience and timing, otherwise the game could drive you crazy. Available for low-memory devices, Amazing Brick is a fun game to have in your library for those occasions you need a little help passing the time.

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First look: GTA V on Xbox One

The Xbox One big launches continue to come thick and fast, and they don't come much bigger than GTA V. Rockstar's epic, open-world, crime sim never made it to the Xbox One or PS4 when it initially launched in 2013, but what a difference a year makes. The time has been spent on giving it a new-gen makeover and it looks all the better for it. Updated visuals, new cars, new weapons, a new first-person mode, there's a lot to love.

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Berry Hill, a smashing puzzle game for Windows Phone

Berry Hill is a Windows Phone puzzle game where you have to remove all the berries from the gaming screen by smashing them together. The concept may sound simple but the challenge comes into play with a limited number of moves and movement restrictions.

Available for low-memory devices, Berry Hill has over 100 levels of play and five game modes to keep you busy. It is a deceptively addictive game for your Windows Phone and not a bad time waster of a game.

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Never Alone is a cooperative platformer for Xbox One that stars a young girl named Nuna and her mystical Fox companion. The pair must traverse the frozen climes of Alaska as they seek a way to stop the endless blizzard that plagues Nuna's village. Never Alone is a unique and beautiful window into the folklore and culture of the Native Alaskan Iñupiat people, and also an entertaining game in its own right.

First announced back in May, Never Alone now available on Xbox One and Steam. Before you grab the game (or after!), be sure to read our in-depth interview with Grant Roberts, Lead Game Designer from E-Line Media, the publisher of Never Alone. We've got lots of behind-the-scenes details, concept art, and an exclusive gameplay video that highlight just what an uncommon game Never Alone really is.

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If you've just picked up a copy of GTA V for Xbox One you may be encountering some issues with transferring your previously created characters for GTA Online. Some players are reporting that their online characters can't be transferred if they haven't played the multiplayer mode since 2013. Fortunately, Rockstar is aware and is investigating the issue.

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Some of the best things in life are the simplest. The same can be said of Windows Phone games and Brain Rush!!! may be the simplest game on Store shelves.

You are tasked with matching incoming shapes with the shape at the bottom of the screen. The longer you survive, the quicker the shapes move down the screen. Brain Rush!!! is available for low-memory devices and while the game presents itself in a simple manner, the game is a challenging title to have in your Windows Phone gaming library.

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We have reached the finish line everyone! This week is the last batch of big AAA titles to the Xbox One this holiday season. This week is jammed pack with action adventure games with the releases of Dragon Age: Inquisition, Grand Theft Auto 5, and Far Cry 4. Continue reading to find out the other games including a highly anticipated indie game launching this week.

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Bang Bang Monsters is a Windows Phone arcade game where you must protect your herd of sheep from an alien invasion. You play the role of a farm girl, who is armed to the hilt with an assortment of nasty weapons who must take out a wide assortment of alien monsters who are intent on devouring her sheep.

The game has five gaming modes, two mini-games, six bosses to smash, and over fifteen gaming achievements to reach. Graphics are good, game play challenging and Bang, Bang Monsters makes a nice first impression. The game is available for low-memory devices.

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The official Age of Empires: World Domination website has recently posted up word of yet another delay in the launch of the mobile strategy game for Windows Phone, Android and iOS. The game, based on Microsoft's long running franchise and developed by KLab, was originally supposed to be out this past summer, but got delayed until sometime this fall. Now the development team says the game won't be out until sometime in 2015.

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Halo developer 343 Industries has addressed the ongoing issues with multiplayer in Halo: The Master Chief Collection. Executive Producer Dan Ayoub said that recent server-side adjustments have resulted in better server connectivity for many players. However, he also said that fixing this problem further requires a patch for players, which should be available this Wednesday, according to a post on the official Halo Waypoint forums:

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Shoot-a Story is one of the more unique Windows Phone shooter games available in the Store. First, the game is composed completely out of text and second, the goal is to destroy some of history's greatest novels, word by word.

Every aspect of Shoot-a Story, from game play to the gaming menus, is text oriented. For example, the ship that you use to attack the novels is literally the word "SHIP".

Available for low memory devices, Shoot-a Story may not appeal to everyone but we have to give the developer credit for coming up with a unique approach to shooter games.

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Although the much-loved Pinball FX2 sadly never showed up on Windows Phone, Microsoft's mobile phone platform has a long-running pinball series of its own: Pinball League from Tainicom. It started with The Juggler way back in 2011, followed by Dr. Pickaxe the next year. Both games also made it to Windows 8 and RT.

After a two year absence, Tainicom is back with their latest pinball game – Pinball League: Hardhat Zone. This and Tainicom's previous pinball games are universal purchases, so you can buy it once and enjoy on Windows Phone and Windows 8 and RT. Excitingly, Hardhat Zone introduces some new features like portrait and landscape support, Facebook leaderboards, and multiplayer via NFC (Near-Field Communication). See the NFC multiplayer mode in action in our video review!

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Top rated New and Rising Windows Phone Games

Windows Central Roundup: New and Rising Windows Phone Games

For those not familiar, the Windows Phone Store has a category of apps and games that highlights new and rising titles. If you are curious what new games and apps are on Store shelves that are gaining popularity, this is a good area of the Store to visit.

For this week's roundup, we have plucked four gaming titles from this aisle of the Store to showcase. Each title has a Store rating of at least four stars and includes a pair of racing games, an endless runner game and a casino title. There are a ton of quality titles in the New and Rising section of the Windows Phone Store and hopefully this small sampling will catch someone's eye.

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Ghost Academy is a Windows Phone game that pulls together a collection of mini-games that will test your skills at speed, timing and observation. Ghost Academy's premise is that each game represents a monster skill that a young vampire, zombie or possessed skeleton may need training on.

Training that will better the chances of success each monster will have when they go out and terrorize the world. The games are not overly complicated but challenging in their own right. Available for low-memory devices, Ghost Academy may not be up for marathon gaming sessions but it is a decent option to consider for shorter bits of time.

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Pure Pool and Terraria now available for Xbox One

This week we have seen plenty of great new games on Xbox One. Halo: The Master Chief Collection and Assassin's Creed Unity are probably the two big blockbuster titles out, but you're not going to want to miss the smaller titles. You can now buy, download and play Pure Pool and Terraria.

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Popular game SongArc now available for Windows 8.1

SongArc is one of the most popular music games on Windows Phone. Which is why we're happy to see an update to the game in the Windows Phone Store. But we might be even more stoked to try out the new version for Windows 8.1. That's right; you can now play SongArc on your Lumia and your Surface.

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