For the first time, Microsoft Solitaire Collection — which includes the Klondike (i.e. classic) version, as well as Spider, FreeCell, Pyramid and Tripeaks variants — is playable on Android and iOS. It’s free to download and play right now, but with a few strings attached.
If you download the collection before Dec. 31, you’ll enjoy a free one-month Premium Edition subscription for the game. This step-up version eliminates in-app ads, lets players earn bonus coins (for ranking up) in Daily Challenges, and gives players an extra advantage in Pyramid and Tripeaks.
Premium Edition normally carries a $1.99 monthly subscription fee. Pick up the collection after Dec. 31 and you’ll have to pay if you want to see what the ad-free version looks like.
With or without Premium, Xbox users have the ability to connect Microsoft Solitaire Collection to their Xbox Live Gamertags. That means you can connect and play with friends, earn Achievements, and save progress in the cloud so you can pick up where you left off in any version of the game.
To be clear: this isn’t the first time the game of Solitaire is available for Android and iOS; a quick look at either one’s app marketplace reveals that’s not the case. This is just the first time Microsoft’s version of the game — which has plenty of street cred, thanks to its age and ubiquity — is out for that hardware.