Today, Microsoft announced that all multiplayer gaming will be completely free on Games for Windows LIVE, including cross-platform gameplay with XBOX 360 users.
"I love getting achievements when I play games. I love having the same friends list shared between my PC games and my XBOX 360. And I love not having to pick games from a list of servers, but just having matchmaking that puts me into a game", Microsoft's Major Nelson wrote on his blog. "And today, we made some announcements that are going to make that much more common in Windows games... Games for Windows - LIVE - our online multiplayer gaming service for Windows, now offers completely free multiplayer. No exceptions - multiplayer is completely free, even cross-platform gameplay with XBOX 360 users."
The free multiplayer is applicable to all current and future Games for Windows titles including Gears of War and Fallout 3.
Games for Windows - LIVE lets you add achievements and gamerscore earned in Windows games to your XBOX LIVE account. You can also chat and message your friends on LIVE, regardless of the platform.
Major Nelson also announced that this fall Microsoft will be delivering a new Marketplace for Games for Windows - LIVE.