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Microsoft offers refunds for digital Xbox One and Windows 10 games

Starting soon, Microsoft will let players "return" games that they've purchased via the Xbox One or Windows 10 stores for full refunds.

For people who prefer to buy their games digitally, that's welcome news. While you can always return a physical game to a brick and mortar store, users who rely on digital purchases often end up stuck with games that, for whatever reason, didn't quite click. According to a screenshot posted on NeoGAF, that will no longer be a problem. From the looks of things, the self-serve refund feature is currently live for Xbox One Alpha testers, and should be rolled out to everyone else relatively soon.

There are some caveats, of course. Refunds can only be requested up to 14 days from the original purchase date, and games aren't eligible for refunds if they've been played for more than two hours cumulatively across all accounts. Refunds won't be issued for games that have been out for less than a day, and add-on content like season passes and other types of DLC can't be returned. In addition, if Microsoft thinks you're abusing the self-service refund feature, the company can block your access to refunds going forward.

That's basically how refunds work on the PC-only digital storefront Steam, too. Although Steam users can also write to the retailer and plead their case if they believe they deserve a refund after the specified time period has elapsed.

As the video game market favors digital more and more, features like this will help give Microsoft, Xbox One, and Windows a leg up on the competition. After all, while the Xbox One has tons of great games, sometimes you still end up with a stinker. It happens.