No More XBOX Original Games on Live Starting April 15th - How To Keep Playing with Friends

This day was inevitable, even if unfortunate. Microsoft is finally pulling the plug on XBOX Live support for original XBOX games. Starting April 15th, you'll no longer be able to hop onto XBOX Live for some nostalgic bouts of Halo 2 multiplayer.

I won't drone on here why I believe Microsoft shouldn't cut game support for a paid service (particularly for games they were selling days ago in digital form), but there are two sides to that argument. According to most stats, few gamers out there are playing XBOX original titles on XBOX Live. And, according to Microsoft, continuing legacy support for original XBOX titles is getting in the way of improving the Live service overall.

What does this mean for you, if you want to still play some old favorites with friends?

Fortunately, it doesn't mean you can no longer get your multiplayer on. Since 2006, we've featured an article from TechLore member Yog-Sothoth, "XBConnect: A Free Alternative to XBox Live," which details a free alternative to XBOX Live for original XBOX gamers. With XBConnect, any game that supports LAN multiplayer, such as Halo 2, can be still be enjoyed with friends in different places. XBConnect acts as a gigantic virtual LAN, allowing players to use the games LAN multiplayer over the Internet.

With XBConnect, you won't have the matchmaking options Live provided, but many hosts have open games that anyone can join. From my experience the players there are very good at their game of choice (that's why they still play after all), but I've typically found them to be kinder and less arrogant than the average pre-teen you find on Live.

I wonder if this means they'll change the name to 'XBOX 360' Live? After all, calling it XBOX Live is a bit misleading...

Still want to get your game on? Read Yog's article to learn more about XBConnect: XBConnect: A Free Alternative to XBox Live


Interestingly enough, for me, this doesn't really have a whole lot of impact. I was never really that into my original XBOX or the games for it. When I think "nostalgic" I think playing Doom over a 2400 baud modem :)

That being said, it really isn't a great thing that they're cutting support for games that people paid for, even if it is bogging down the service. Sounds like a cop out. Perhaps they could have offered an alternative service for "legacy" XBOX titles, but it looks like XBConnect might pick up some of that slack.


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