Microsoft’s Game Pass is often seen as one of the best deals in gaming — surprising as it may be, it is! With hundreds of games available for download on Xbox consoles and on PC for $10.95 per month, it’s hard to see Game Pass in a light where it’s not a total bargain.
But therein lies the streaming problem. When you’re presented with so much choice, it’s so hard to know what you want to watch or play.
Fret not, for we’re here to tell you what the best games are on Microsoft’s Game Pass.
The 10 best games on Microsoft Game Pass
Below you’ll find the best games on Microsoft Game Pass. Just a disclaimer before we get started — this isn’t a definitive game of the year ranking list, which you’ll probably pick up on once you see games on this list that were released prior to 2022 (and 2021!). We just think these games are worth playing if you have Microsoft’s Game Pass. These games are ordered by release date.
Release date: November 16, 2021 (Multiplayer), December 8, 2021 (Campaign)
With a surprise launch on November 16, Halo Infinite’s multiplayer went live all around the world. It’s an insanely fun multiplayer experience and although the game is free to play (available for download from Steam as well), its multiplayer experience is too good to ignore. The multiplayer side of Halo Infinite just launched its second season, so it’s a good time to get into the action.
Halo Infinite puts you in the shoes of Master Chief as he tries to locate his former AI companion, Cortana. The multiplayer on the other hand has you shooting other players in team-based modes. It’s insanely fun and hard to pass up.
Release date: November 1, 2021
Our first wholesome game and our first one from Australia, Unpacking is a simple little game about unpacking your items in a new home over eight levels. It sounds simple, right? But it’s actually quite a puzzle game, and one where the story is delivered to you in bits as you unpack.
While it’s a puzzle game, you won’t have to get too caught up in thinking about where all the pieces fit. Rather, it’s about winding down and relaxing as you unpack your possessions in a new home.
Age of Empires IV
Release date: October 28, 2021
Following up one of the most iconic strategy games ever made, Age of Empires IV is a massively fun game, putting you in control of an army that you build through the ages. It’s a bit technical, but there’s a lot to enjoy, like the city building aspect, the ability to command an army and the feeling of when you crush your foes.
Age of Empires IV features a campaign mode covering three specific periods — the Norman conquest of England, the 100 years’ war between England and France and the Mongol Empire and its quest for expansion. You’ll learn a bit of history and strategy along the way. Just be aware that Age of Empires IV isn’t available on Xbox, but it is available on PC and xCloud.
The Wild at Heart
Release date: May 19, 2021
The Wild at Heart is a treat. This adorable game is an adventure-fest, putting you in the boots of two kids as they travel, battle beasts and uncover mysteries in a story rich world.
It’s a puzzle game, so it’ll make you think at times, but this storybook fantasy and adventure game will hold your attention for a while.
Release date: September 17, 2020
Hades is just incredible. Easy to pick up, with a progression system that feels organic and makes you feel like you’re getting better every step of the way, Hades is a top-down dungeon crawler where your goal is to escape hell and reach Mount Olympus.
It’s incredible fun. The controls feel tight, the characters are well voice-acted, the story is interesting and the gameplay is terrific. The game is based around individual ‘attempts’ (or ‘runs’) to leave Hell and each attempt makes you feel like you’re getting better and better. You’ve got to give Hades a try.
Release date: August 18, 2020
After something a bit more cozy? Spiritfarer might be right for you. Spiritfarer is about being the ferrymaster of the deceased and moving dead souls onto the afterlife.
It sounds morbid, but it’s actually a pretty wholesome game involving a lot of management sim stuff. If you’re after something low stakes to wind down with, give Spiritfarer a look.
Sea of Thieves
Release date: March 20, 2018
You thought Spiritfarer was the only ocean voyaging game on this list? WRONG. Sea of Thieves is a great exploration game to play with friends, giving you a boat and wide open ocean to explore in a fantasy pirate world. There’s a lot of plunder to be had and a lot of places to explore.
While it can get a little daunting and confusing at times, it really is a great time waster to play with friends. There’s so much to do and so much to see. Also you can shoot yourself out of a cannon.
Release date: February 24, 2017
Hollow Knight is another indie game that has made its way to our list. From a group of developers in South Australia, Hollow Knight is a 2D action game where you explore the ancient kingdom of Hallownest.
The characters look a lot like insects and the game takes place in a world based on a microscopic world where bugs roam. It’s another fun adventure game that’ll make you think.
Release date: September 15, 2015
Undertale rules. It’s a 2D roleplaying game about a child who enters a strange land full of friends, enemies and wonders. It took the world by storm several years ago and the best part about it is you don’t have to kill anyone.
The pixel art of Undertale is a big part of why it rules, as is its soundtrack and its unique gameplay (an RPG with choices, sure, but the battles are also wonderfully done). We reckon Undertale could hold your attention for a while.
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
Release date: November 11, 2011
How could I avoid mentioning Skyrim? Skyrim is one of the most beloved games ever made. If you don’t know about it, it’s an RPG that puts you in the shoes of the Dragonborn, a powerful warrior who wields the vocal shouting powers of a dragon.
You get to choose your own adventure and travel anywhere on the map, becoming a fantasy hero of your own creation. It’s also heavily moddable. If you want a more up-to-date version of Skyrim, consider downloading the Anniversary Edition, which is available on all three platforms as well.
How much does Microsoft Game Pass cost?
Microsoft’s Game Pass is available on Xbox consoles and on PC platforms for $10.95 per month. For Game Pass ultimate, which includes both platforms plus xCloud streaming, you’ll spend $15.95 per month.
How do I get Microsoft Game Pass?
You can subscribe to Microsoft Game Pass at anytime through the Xbox app on your PC, on the Xbox website, or on your Xbox console.
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