The best game bargains are the ones that add to your backlog for free

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Is it Christmas? You might think so with all the free games being offered. Whether through generosity or calculated marketing, there’s a bunch of free games out there for folks that want something to play. I’m not talking about free-to-play microtransaction-cluttered stuff. This is decent gaming for free!

Sniper Elite V2 from Rebellion is free for the next 24 hours on Steam. This World War II testicle-destroying shooter from 2012 allows players to conduct long-range surgery on Nazis. Set up your camping spot and fire away! Rebellion is offering the game for keeps as long as customers download it for the duration of the offer. Sniper Elite 3 will launch on June 27th for the PC and July 1st for the PlayStation 3, PlayStation4, Xbox One, and Xbox 360.

If you’re a PlayStation Plus member, Sony is offering Trine 2: The Complete Story and PixelJunk Shooter Ultimate for the PlayStation4, and NBA 2K14 for the PlayStation 3 to play at no additional charge. Platforming, shooting, and touchdowns for free! Download and play them for as long as you remain a PS+ member.

Microsoft also has some games for Xbox Live Gold members. Xbox 360 owners can add Dark Souls to their backlog now, and on the 16th they’ll be able to add Charlie Murder and Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition. (The latter is an especially good deal because it allows newcomers to the series to jump in on the recently released digital upgrade to Ultra Street Fighter IV.) Xbox One owners get their first offerings in the Games for Gold program with Max: The Curse of Brotherhood and Halo: Spartan Assault. Keep in mind that the offer details vary slightly with the consoles. The complimentary games on the Xbox 360 are added to accounts and can be downloaded and played even after membership lapses, while Xbox One gamers must maintain their subscriptions to access their games.