So how on earth, you may ask, am I meant to know where to start with all these games? What should I play? I'm confused and I need to lie down. Well, relax dear, because here at Pure Xbox we've gone ahead and listed what we consider to be the very best games on Xbox Game Pass right now. Chosen from a wide range of genres in order to satiate a wide range of tastes and appetites, what you'll find here is the absolute cream of the crop (in our humble opinion).
So, let's jump in! These are the best Xbox Game Pass games as of March 2023.
Publisher: Focus Home Interactive / Developer: Asobo Studio
Release Date: 18th Oct 2022 (USA)
/ 18th Oct 2022 (UK/EU)
Available On: Xbox Game Pass (Until TBA)
Well, the original A Plague Tale: Innocence might not be available on Xbox Game Pass anymore, but the much newer sequel launched day one as part of the service, and the good news is that A Plague Tale: Requiem is even better than the first game! We had an absolute blast while playing this for review, ultimately giving it an "Excellent" 9/10 score. We recommend playing the first game if you can as well, but you could always just jump into this sequel first and see what you think. Here's a bit from our review:
"Requiem is exactly the kind of new AAA narrative adventure we've been craving for a while on Xbox Game Pass, and we can't wait to see what this developer does next. Asobo Studio is really hitting its stride."
Publisher: Xbox Game Studios / Developer: Forgotten Empires
Release Date: 31st Jan 2023 (USA)
Xbox fans had been begging for a console version of Age of Empires for such a long time, and then we got an announcement for two of them at once! The first to arrive on Xbox was Age of Empires 2: Definitive Edition, and the good news is that it plays extremely well with a controller on Xbox One, Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S!
You don't have to use the new controls if you don't want to, as Age of Empires 2: Definitive Edition on Xbox Game Pass also supports mouse and keyboard, so you can get (nearly) the full PC experience on your console.
Publisher: SEGA / Developer: Creative Assembly
Release Date: 7th Oct 2014 (USA)
/ 7th Oct 2014 (UK/EU)
Creative Assembly and Feral Interactive really set themselves quite the task when they decided to attempt to create an Aliens game that captured the relentless intensity and smothering atmosphere of the original Alien movie. Thankfully, they not only succeeded in 100% nailing it, they ended up making what is arguably the greatest horror game of all time in the process. Yes, Alien Isolation is THAT good.
It's all about the amazing Xenomorph here, cleverly programmed to go about its business; hunting, barrelling down shafts and vents, reacting to the slightest sound and zeroing in on your location, just like the real thing. Alien Isolation puts you in an exquisite recreation of the movie universe and pits you against the perfect organism. Its structural perfection is matched only by its hostility. Good luck.
Release Date: TBA
We're sure you all know what Among Us is at this point — the game has proved to be a massive success for developer Innersloth, and finally made its debut on Xbox consoles in 2021. It's a multiplayer effort in which a team who assume the role of The Crew of a dinky little spaceship is required to complete tasks whilst trying to identify the other team's Impostors. The Impostors' job, on the other hand, is to try and kill the crewmates and frame bystanders. It leads to some surprisingly hilarious and strategic fun, and if you've got a big enough bunch of friends for it - or even if you're playing with a random bunch of strangers, we highly recommend giving this one a try.
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Publisher: Ubisoft / Developer: Ubisoft
Release Date: 27th Oct 2017 (USA)
Ubisoft's Assassin's Creed Origins was a really nice surprise addition to Xbox Game Pass in June 2022, and it's one of just two Assassin's Creed games on the service. Better yet, Ubisoft dished out a free 60fps update for Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S to mark its arrival on Game Pass, making it play better than ever on consoles.
If you haven't tried this one yet, it's definitely worth checking out. This is one of the very best Assassin's Creed games of all time, and undoubtedly one of the best games on Xbox Game Pass. Origins marked the start of a fresh new beginning for the franchise, and really gave it a new lease of life. Don't overlook this one, it's worth a play!
Publisher: Ubisoft / Developer: Ubisoft Quebec
Release Date: 5th Oct 2018 (USA)
/ 5th Oct 2018 (UK/EU)
As if the arrival of Assassin's Creed Origins wasn't enough, Ubisoft also treated us to Assassin's Creed Odyssey on Xbox Game Pass a few months later, which was first released back in October of 2018. This instalment challenges you to "write your own epic odyssey and become a legendary Spartan hero", and it's an absolute blast!
In our review, we called it the "best" Assassin's Creed game yet - at least until Valhalla came out!
"With deep RPG elements, tons of loot, unlockable skills and an overwhelming array of side quests and activities surrounding an epic main campaign that's set in one of the most impressive game worlds we've ever seen, this one is an essential purchase for AC fans and anyone who loves an epic RPG adventure."
Publisher: Warner Bros / Developer: Turtle Rock Studios
Release Date: 12th Oct 2021 (UK/EU)
Turtle Rock Studios' spiritual successor to the Left 4 Dead series arrived in October of 2021 and, although it might not quite hit the heady heights of the best of L4D, it's still a tight and absorbing thrill ride for a squad of friends or randoms to blast through online.
Yes, although the solo and PvP elements of Back 4 Blood one aren't quite there yet, the main meat of this horror shooter is the co-op campaign and in this respect Turtle Rock Studios have done a top job. The action looks and feels great - it's truly relentless stuff - there's tons of variety introduced through the unique card system for perks, mutations and so on, and a surprising amount of flexibility in how you choose to face the hordes - heck, you can even try for a pacifist run here. Back 4 Blood is one of the best games on Xbox Game Pass that nails the all-important need for clever teamwork in order to survive. This one comes highly recommended.
Publisher: Xbox Game Studios
Release Date: 20th Aug 2020 (UK/EU)
The revival of the classic Battletoads was always going to have to live up to major expectations, and we felt it did a great job here at Pure Xbox, scoring it an 8/10 in our review and calling it "one of the funniest games of this generation, and a pretty nifty beat 'em up to boot." The only real downside? There's no online co-op, just local multiplayer.
If you've got one or two friends to play it with on the couch, you're going to have a great time with this one. The art style is fantastic, the combat is fun, and as mentioned before, it's a genuinely funny game. Oh, and the best bit? It's not as brutally difficult as Battletoads used to be, so it's a much more accessible outing for the toads this time. It does have a few downsides, but Battletoads is still one of the best games on Xbox Game Pass for sure.
Publisher: Deck13 / Developer: Matthias Linda
Release Date: 8th Dec 2022 (USA)
It might not seem like much on the surface, but Chained Echoes debuted on Xbox Game Pass to absolutely incredible reviews in December 2022, making it one of the best-rated Game Pass launches of the year. This SNES-style RPG will probably go under the radar for a lot of people, but it's definitely worth your time if you like the look of it.
This isn't a short-and-sweet adventure, either — you're looking at 30 to 40 hours of gameplay in which you'll "travel around the vast continent of Valandis to bring an end to the war between its three kingdoms". There's really no reason not to give it a try on Xbox Game Pass, especially considering it's a very small download!
Publisher: Tripwire Interactive / Developer: Tripwire Interactive
Release Date: 8th Jun 2021 (UK/EU)
If you're looking for a fun multiplayer game which features battles for up to 64 players, Chivalry 2 is for you. This is a brilliant hack-and-slash title inspired by "epic medieval battles", throwing you into its gory action complete with a fully featured mounted combat system. Although it went somewhat under the radar when it first arrived on Xbox in 2021, Chivalry 2's Xbox Game Pass launch saw over 500,000 players joining the battle within just a few days, and it's been getting a lot of positive attention ever since. Definitely worth a download!
Publisher: Fellow Traveller / Developer: Jump Over The Age
Release Date: 5th May 2022 (USA)
Jump Over The Age's Citizen Sleeper is a wonderfully unique life sim/RPG that looks and feels like nothing else we've played recently.
In this fantastically evocative and stylish game, you assume the role of a Sleeper, a low budget synthetic being, on the run from the corporation that built you. Stowing away in a cargo hold during a genuinely claustrophobic opening sequence, you soon find yourself washed up on Erlin's Eye, a decrepit space station that's jam-packed full of interesting characters, places, and secrets to get stuck into exploring.
With multiple endings to mop up as you peel back layers and dig deeper into Eldin's Eye and its inhabitants, Citizen Sleeper is a unique and thought-provoking adventure that's truly taken us by surprise, and one the best things to hit Game Pass in 2022.