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Correction: The story previously stated that Destiny was the first game you could preload on Xbox One. Madden NFL 15 was actually the first game to support this feature.

Destiny is approaching fast, and Microsoft is using the highly anticipated sci-fi shooter to highlight one of the new features for its newest console.

Xbox One owners can preorder the digital version of Destiny on the Xbox Store starting today for $60. While that’s nice, Microsoft is using Bungie’s latest work to introduce “predownloading.” If you preorder the digital version of Destiny on Xbox One, you can also instantly install the game (but not play it) so that it is ready to go right as the game launches at midnight Sept. 9. Preloading is part of Microsoft’s effort to encourage people to buy more digital games.

Those who want to take advantage of preloading on Xbox One can do so by heading to its online store and selecting the “prepurchase” option on Destiny. Unlike preordering a game at retailer GameStop, you have to plunk down the full amount. After payment goes through, the game will automatically start downloading.


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Microsoft confirmed that this will also work with certain other games in the future.

Preloading isn’t a new concept. Valve introduced the concept to PC gamers through Steam several years ago. Sony has also used this feature on PS4 for certain games. Sony will also enable preloading of Destiny on its newest console starting Sept. 7.

The capability to buy and download a game so that it is ready to go as soon as possible is one of the advantages of digital games. No driving to the store or waiting in midnight launch lines for something you desperately cannot wait to play. This is just the latest move Microsoft has made to bolster its digital-games service. Since introducing the Xbox One, the company has had day-and-date releases for digital versions of retail games, it has held regular sales for Xbox Live Gold subscribers, and it has even worked with publisher Electronic Arts to introduce a $5-per-month program that includes an instant digital library of that company’s games.

And gamers are moving to digital. Electronic Arts confirmed earlier this year that as much as 15 percent of first week game sales are digital. Previously, that ratio rarely surpassed 10 percent.

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