Microsoft has said it will no longer charge for use of Games for Windows Live.

The PC service, which is similar to an Xbox Live Gold subscription, will now be free across all existing and upcoming PC titles bearing the GfW seal.

Microsoft has also announced an autumn launch target for Games for Windows Live Marketplace, where you will be able to download demos, trailers and extra game content.

Games for Windows Live allows you to set up a friends list, earn Achievements and build a Gamerscore as 360 owners have been doing on Xbox Live.

But despite tie-ins with Shadowrun and Gears of War, the service has struggled to establish itself among PC gamers, many of whom have been taking advantage of online gaming since long before the launch of Xbox Live in 2002.

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Robert Purchese

Robert Purchese

Senior Staff Writer

Bertie is senior staff writer and Eurogamer's Poland-and-dragons correspondent. He's part of the furniture here, a friendly chair, and reports on all kinds of things, the stranger the better.