While Microsoft made plenty of missteps during the launch of the Xbox One, the company has made a concerted effort to turn its reputation around under the leadership of Phil Spencer. One of the biggest achievements of this new, players-first approach has been the launch of a backward compatibility program, allowing Xbox One owners to play Xbox 360 games they already own at no extra cost, thanks to the magic of emulation. Though a lot has been going right for Xbox—the recently released Xbox One S is a great and affordable hardware refresh, for instance—it’s easy to see backward compatibility as a symbolic turning point.
If only Microsoft were moving a little bit quicker when it comes to expanding the backward compatibility library with truly great games. Sure, there are new titles added every week, but it’s hard to deny that these updates are mostly filler, with lesser-known games from smaller genres making the bulk of the additions. It’s been a long time since we’ve had a hugely requested game like Red Dead Redemption added to the service. How could Microsoft possibly add more than 250 Xbox 360 games and somehow not add great titles like Battlefield 3, Mass Effect 2, and Call of Duty: Black Ops II? Will those games ever arrive?
Below you’ll find everything we know about ten of the most-requested games for the Xbox One’s backward compatibility program. That includes progress for games that have already been announced, as well as clues or public statements for those that haven’t.
Call of Duty: Black Ops II – Unconfirmed
With a staggering 193,000 votes, Call of Duty: Black Ops II is the most requested game to get the backward compatible treatment. Fans were teased earlier this summer with the release of the original Black Ops via backward compatibility, but no announcement has even been whispered for the popular sequel. Still, Activision has regularly been adding more and more Call of Duty titles to the feature, with the latest being Call of Duty: World at War. Sooner or later they’ll run out of games to stall with, right?
BioShock Infinite – In Progress
The most requested title that Microsoft has announced, the third BioShock game was announced to be coming to backward compatibility last year, but we still haven’t seen Booker or Elizabeth. Perhaps 2K was prioritizing the release of the remastered BioShock: The Collection first. Now that it’s out, we may finally see the focus shift to getting the original 360 version up and running on the Xbox One.
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim – Unconfirmed
The second-most requested game for the program, the Bethesda action-RPG was ported to the Xbox One as part of Fallout 4′s development research. Does the recent announcement of the remastered Skyrim Special Edition mean the death of this as a backward compatibility game? We’ll have to wait and see.
Mass Effect 2 – Unconfirmed
While the original Mass Effect has already come to the Xbox One, no word has been given as to the second or third chapters in Commander Shepard’s saga. Mass Effect 2 in particular remains a series high point, and we’d love the chance to relive the adventure on the Xbox One. Though, again, EA hasn’t shared any news on backward compatibility, a company executive recently threw a heaping bucket of cold water on the idea of remasters, so it’s entirely possible the publisher sees backward compatibility as a smarter, cheaper approach to bringing the games to current gen. Plus, with the release of Mass Effect Andromeda rapidly approaching, there’s no better time for EA to bring the rest of the trilogy over. It could even be a pre-order bonus!
Grand Theft Auto IV — Unconfirmed
GTA IV has received 76 thousand votes to be brought to the Xbox One, and with the continued success of GTA V, gamers are jonesing to play earlier games in the series. Despite many games released on the Xbox 360, however, Rockstar Games has only brought one to the backward compatibility program thus far, Red Dead Redemption.
Skate 3 – In Progress, Maybe Soon
The 2010 skateboarding game Skate 3 has been listed as coming to the Xbox One backward compatibility program for a long time now, but still no release date has been set. Thanks to a mysterious recent update to the game, however, it seems like the day may be arriving sooner rather than later. Between Xbox boss Phil Spencer publicly acknowledging fans’ thirst and the growing fan campaign led by The Berrics to “Make EA Skate Again,” the publisher may be motivated to act fast.
Batman: Arkham City – Unconfirmed
Expanding the scope of the game from Arkham Asylum, Arkham City was an amazing piece in the Batman gaming universe. Yet, despite his popularity, the Dark Knight has only been seen in one game brought to the Xbox One’s backward compatibility program so far, Lego Batman.
Assassin’s Creed III – Unconfirmed
The final Assassin’s Creed game on last-gen consoles, Assassin’s Creed III put players back in the shoes of Desmond Miles as he explores the American Revolution. Perhaps Microsoft is waiting on some Animus technology to allow us to play games from our past?
BioShock – In Progress
We’ll never forget our first taste of the dark and nautical steampunk shooter, BioShock. Announced as an upcoming backward compatible game alongside BioShock II and BioShock Infinite last year, we can’t help but feel like the game is being kept in a city under the sea. Like with Infinite, there’s a chance that 2K and Microsoft might be more willing to bring the game over now that BioShock: The Collection, featuring remastered versions of all three games, is out.
Battlefield 3 – Unconfirmed
With amazing critical reception, it’s beyond us why Battlefield 3 has yet to come to the Xbox One backward compatibility. Perhaps it’s the bevy of newer Battlefield titles already available for the system that make this less of a priority? But come on, Microsoft, we want to be Marines again!
What games are you waiting on? Let us know in the comments below!