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Red Dead Redemption was playable on Xbox One. Now it isn't. [Update]

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You will need a friend. And a digital copy of the game.

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Red Dead Redemption, one of the most requested games for backward compatibility on Xbox One, is playable on that console. It requires a bit of trickery, but it points squarely to a formal launch of the 2010 cowboy epic.

Update: Well, it was fun while it lasted. When one tries to boot the game now on Xbox One, they are told the game needs an update – an update that can't be delivered. That game won't start without it, so now there is no way to play Red Dead Redemption on Xbox One. The file remains installed on the Xbox One, however. Presumably Microsoft figured out a way to spike the early play, but it seems at some point this will be formally announced and reactivated. We still have a call into Xbox to ask what is going on.

The remainder of this post follows as originally written, but its points are now moot.

Currently, it can be installed to an Xbox One if two conditions are met:

• The user has bought the game from Xbox Live Marketplace (where it is currently $29.99)

• The user is following a friend who owns the game.

By going through the friend's game history and finding Red Dead Redemption, one can open it in Xbox Live Marketplace and either install the (if previously owned) or buy it and then install it to the Xbox One.

This backward compatibility does not work — yet — if you have a disc edition of Red Dead Redemption.

We've reached out to Take-Two and Xbox representatives to inquire about their formal plans for this title.

Xbox One introduced backward compatibility with Xbox 360 games, on a limited basis, in November after announcing the feature at E3 2015. Compatibility is the prerogative of a game's publisher, though all Xbox Live Games with Gold games for the Xbox 360, from November forward, have to be compatible with the Xbox One.

Recently, Xbox said that it would no longer do announcements of games as they become compatible; those titles will simply show up in an Xbox One digital library if the account owner has them on Xbox 360.

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