Xbox has been productive throughout September. The company’s actively testing various ways to make the experience of users on their consoles great, starting with the Xbox home UI test, Discord integration with the console and the recent integration of HowLongToBeat with the game library. They sneaked in another update earlier this month, and an important one.
Xbox consoles, specifically Xbox One and Series consoles require internet to play games. This is Microsoft’s way to DRM check the titles, during which it downloads config from Microsoft’s server. Failure to do so, and the consoles will return a “this game isn’t ready yet” error. Microsoft took that DRM off of the consoles, allowing offline play on the system.
The news comes from user Idle Sloth on Twitter, who tested various games on their consoles. Idle Sloth also has a YouTube channel. Specific games like Resident Evil Village, Nier Replicant, Devil May Cry HD Collection and Judgment were running offline.
(FYI) You can now play your owed Xbox games OFFLINE!!
Microsoft substantially improves the DRM issues (Feb '22) with the installation of disc-based games and access to digital titles with the September 2022 update for the Xbox Series X|S
— Idle Sloth💙💛 (@IdleSloth84_) September 19, 2022
Unfortunately, backwards-compatible titles like Deadly Premonition and Panzer Dragoon didn’t work. The reason is that Xbox and Xbox 360 run an emulated version of the game on the system. That version gets downloaded to function on current-gen consoles, requiring an internet connection is required.
Many digitally downloaded titles also worked well offline. However, games downloaded from Game Pass didn’t.
Another thing to point out is that even with the DRM removed, Xbox users still need to do at least one internet-based initial check for it to run offline.