Microsoft Now Allows You To Play Windows Store Games Offline

Alessio Palumbo
Posted Oct 29, 2016
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Microsoft finally added Offline mode, allowing players to enjoy their Windows Store games even when they are not connected to the Internet. Microsoft’s Larry Hryb (known as Major Nelson on Xbox Live) announced this via Twitter yesterday.

However, you will need to prepare your device while you’re still online through a series of steps. Fortunately, Microsoft provided a guide that we’ve embedded below.

Overview

If you’re planning to be in an area with no online coverage, such as on a long-distance flight or a sailing excursion, you can prepare your Windows 10 device to allow you to play offline. Most games available in the Store on your Windows 10 device support offline play, but check the details of the game to make sure yours is supported by searching for your game at http://www.xbox.com.

Most games with a campaign mode will be playable offline, but games with network co-op or multiplayer features will not work while you’re offline.

While playing offline, some features, such as the ability to purchase additional items from the Windows Store, will not be available. Additionally, any leaderboards will be unavailable while you’re offline.

Achievements

If you earn any achievements while playing offline, they will sync to your account the next time you sign in to Xbox Live on your device. You won’t see a toast notification letting you know that you unlocked the achievement until you sign in to Xbox Live on that device.

Cloud saves and offline game play

Before you go offline, connect to Xbox Live to sync your most recent game save to the cloud. While you play offline, your game save progress will continue to be saved locally, and it’ll sync the next time you sign in to Xbox Live. If you want to continue playing on a different device (or platform, if the game supports Xbox Play Anywhere), you’ll need to go online and connect to Xbox Live to allow your local saved game to sync with the cloud again.

If you’re on a Windows 10 device, your cloud saves will automatically start uploading once you’re signed in and connected to Xbox Live. Game save sync is usually fast, but allow a couple of minutes before you try playing on another device.

How to enable offline play on your device

If you’re planning on playing offline, you’ll need to prepare your Windows 10 device while you have an online connection. It’s important that you do this while you’re online, as once you go offline, you won’t be able to make these changes.

Note You can only change your designated offline device three times per year.

Prepare your device

If you have multiple Windows 10 devices, you’ll need to make sure that the device you intend to use offline is set as the designated offline device. You can only have one device as your designated offline device.

To set your device as your designated offline device:

  1. Make sure that you’re online.
  2. Check that your device has the latest Windows updates: Go to Start > Settings > Update & security > Windows Update and see if any relevant updates are available.
  3. Open the Store. You’ll be prompted to sign in if you haven’t already.
  4. Select the Me icon (this is your profile picture).
  5. Select Settings, and then under Offline Permissions, make sure that the toggle is set to On.

Once you set this, any devices previously designated as offline will be toggled to Off, and you’ll no longer be able to play games offline on those devices.

Prepare your game or games

Once your device is set up, you’ll need to launch each game you want to play offline while signed in to Xbox Live. You only need to do this once per game, and you’ll need to do this even if you’ve already launched the game on your device.

  1. Make sure that you’re online, and that your device is set as your designated offline device. (See the steps above for details on how to do this.)
  2. Launch the game you want to play offline. When prompted, sign in to Xbox Live with your account.
  3. Once you’ve started playing the game, you can exit at any time.

Repeat this process for each game you want to play offline. Once completed, you can go offline at any time and launch those games whenever you want to play them, without needing to sign in online each time.

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