22 of the best Xbox Game Pass games (August 2022)

Heidi Nicholas - March 5th 2019

Choosing which Xbox Game Pass title to play next can feel like a daunting task, so we're here to help you narrow down the choice by using a combination of site review scores, your community ratings, and our own opinions, to put together our list of 22 of the best Xbox Game Pass games that you should be checking out today.

If you're subscribing to Xbox Game Pass, you no doubt want to make sure that you're playing the very best games that the service has to offer. From highly anticipated Xbox exclusives that release straight into the program to the ID@Xbox games that take you by surprise, there are more great titles arriving into Xbox Games Pass library every month.

August 11th, 2022: We've updated this article to remove previously featured games that have now left Xbox Game Pass, replacing them with a selection of new highlights that should be good as of August 2022... we hope you find something new to play here!

Assassin's Creed Origins

Now, for me personally, it’s got to be Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. But Assassin’s Creed Origins is rated 0.03 better than Odyssey and goes first on the list of highest-rated Xbox Game Pass Games, and I do as the list guides, so here it is: (trumpet fanfare) Assassin’s Creed Origins! Origins takes us to Egypt as Bayek of Siwa, who, together with his wife Aya, fights to safeguard the people of Egypt and to eliminate the Order of the Ancients, letting us explore the origins of the Assassin’s Brotherhood in the process. Origins marked a shift away from the previous games, and was the forerunner of the type of Assassin’s Creed game we now expect with Odyssey and Valhalla. It offers a sizeable chunk of content too, with a completion of the base game promising to steal at least 60-80 hours of your free time. I am loyal to Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, but there’s no denying that Assassin’s Creed Origins deserves its place on this list.

Assassin's Creed® Origins

ASSASSIN’S CREED® ORIGINS IS A NEW BEGINNING Ancient Egypt, a land of majesty and intrigue, is disappearing in a ruthless fight for power. Unveil dark secrets and forgotten myths as you go back to the one founding moment: The Origins of the Assassin’s Brotherhood.

Yakuza: Like a Dragon

What a game to have on Xbox Game Pass. If you ever wondered how much random ridiculousness you could fit in a game, Yakuza: Like a Dragon has the answer, and it’s fantastic. It’s all about Ichiban Kasuga, who’s just been released from an 18-year stint in prison (for a crime he didn’t commit) only to realise his clan is gone, and he’s been betrayed by his idol. He then sets out on a mission to figure out what happened. That, technically, is what the game is about, but you might forget that after you stumble onto the sheer amount of stuff there is to do in Like a Dragon. It’s nearly impossible to go from point A to point B without getting sidetracked by side missions, minigames, or random snippets of conversation. Soon you’ll be running a business (where your best employee is apparently a chicken?) or fighting to stay awake while REM rams (creepy sheep-men) attempt to lull you to sleep. Yes, really. Yakuza: Like a Dragon is just sheer fun to play — and is just one of many great RPGs on Xbox Game Pass — and it’s a safe bet that you won’t regret starting this up while it’s in the Game Pass library.
Yakuza: Like a Dragon

Become Ichiban Kasuga, a low-ranking yakuza grunt left on the brink of death by the man he trusted most. Take up your legendary bat and get ready to crack some underworld skulls in dynamic RPG combat set against the backdrop of modern-day Japan in Yakuza: Like a Dragon.

Russian and Brazilian Portuguese subtitles available in early 2021 via patch update.

Game leverages Smart Delivery allowing access to both the Xbox One title and Xbox Series X|S title when available.

The Outer Worlds

The Outer Worlds is just a huge amount of fun to play. It's a sci-fi, space-western RPG mashup, which should tell you everything you need to know about the game's tone. If ever a game were to deserve the descriptor "wacky," it would be this one. It's often viewed as a sort of spiritual successor to Fallout: New Vegas, but while it has a similar sense of humour, it very much stands on its own two feet. The Outer Worlds doesn't want you to take it too seriously — it wants you to explore space, maybe blow some stuff up, and maybe help take out an all-controlling evil corporation. You know, just if you have the time. The Outer Worlds unites in-depth dialogue options and an incredibly complex and branching story with that wacky humour and some seriously gorgeous planets. It's rated at 4.38 out of 5 on our site, while our The Outer Worlds review gave it a 4.5/5.
The Outer Worlds

The Outer Worlds is a new single-player sci-fi RPG from Obsidian Entertainment and Private Division. As you explore the furthest reaches of space and encounter a host of factions all vying for power, who you decide to become will determine the fate of everyone in Halcyon. In the corporate equation for the colony, you are the unplanned variable.

Spiritfarer

I’ve shouted the praises of this game quite a bit, and it more than lives up to the hype. You play as Stella, the new guardian of the deceased. With your cat Daffodil, you’re in charge of ferrying these souls to the afterlife, but it’s not a quick trip. They’ll be with you for some time, with you building them a home and learning about their life, loves, dreams, and regrets. Spiritfarer gives you just enough time to bond with these wonderful spirits before punching you straight in the feelings when it’s time to drop them off. Spiritfarer is beautiful both in theme and in fact, with a gorgeous soundtrack and a beautiful world full of vibrant sunsets and isolated islands. Stella has a lot to do in her role as Spiritfarer, and must farm, mine, fish, cook, explore, and more — but Spiritfarer rarely feels rushed. You’re free to take the game at your own pace, without the usual panic of farming games where you feel you have to get as much done as possible before night falls. Spiritfarer is a real gem of a game, and one you should definitely try while it’s on Xbox Game Pass.
Spiritfarer®: Farewell Edition

Spiritfarer is a cozy management game about dying. As ferrymaster to the deceased, build a boat to explore the world, care for your spirit friends, and guide them across mystical seas to finally release them into the afterlife.

Two Point Campus

There's just a smidgen of a difference of 0.03 between the TrueAchievements rating of Two Point Campus and Two Point Hospital, but in our opinion, Two Point Campus has an extra layer to it which earns it its spot on this list. Two Point Campus launched into Xbox Game Pass recently, and over 4,000 TA members have picked it up since to run the campus of their dreams. In Two Point Hospital, it sometime felt like a race to get patients in, treated, and out again, but with Two Point Campus, you're encouraged to invest in the university and its students to a greater degree. Those students will be with you for much longer than your hospital patients, and you're in charge of making sure they keep their grades up while still having access to all the clubs and parties they want while attending your university. You can build outside, too, which adds in a whole other element to building and customising your campus. There's a lot going on and a lot you have to control to keep your campus running smoothly. This can be a little overwhelming at times (especially since I keep getting distracted by what giant dish the students are cooking up in their Gastronomy course or fuming because one teacher insists on walking around hunched over with hunger despite the one vending machine I very thoughtfully placed miles away from their office), yet Two Point Campus promises to hold your attention once you've got to grips with its systems, and it's definitely not one to miss while it's on Xbox Game Pass.
Two Point Campus

Build the university of your dreams with Two Point Campus, the follow up management sim with a twist from the creators of Two Point Hospital. Get to know your students, explore their personalities and fulfill their wants and needs. Craft buildings, choose courses, hire the best staff and build an academic institution to stand the test of time.

A Plague Tale: Innocence

A Plague Tale: Innocence seemed to have flown under the radar at first, before garnering huge popularity with players and critics alike. It's a stealth game with action-adventure elements, rated at 4.50/5 by our community. As the title suggests, it's a grim game set in a Medieval France overrun with disease, rats, soldiers, and the Inquisition. Orphans Amicia and Hugo De Rune have to make their way through this gruelling world, with Amicia needing to protect her little brother, particularly from the Inquisition, which seems to have taken an interest in the boy and his strange illness. With the news of a Plague Tale 2 on the horizon — A Plague Tale: Requiem — it'll be more than worth getting stuck into the first one while it's on Xbox Game Pass.
A Plague Tale: Innocence

Follow the critically acclaimed tale of young Amicia and her little brother Hugo, in a heartrending journey through the darkest hours of history.

Forza Horizon 5

Once you remove EA Play titles from the mix, the number of racing games included with Xbox Game Pass is actually pretty slim, but that doesn’t matter when you have one of the best sim-cade racers taking up pole position in the service: Forza Horizon 5. This time around, the Horizon Festival takes us to the diverse land of Mexico, where we have deserts, canyons, swamps, farmlands, towns, jungles, and a volcano to thrash some of the world’s most expensive cars around. Visually, you can’t fault Forza Horizon 5 — it truly is a stunning game, and Playground Games has really put a lot of love and effort into putting together a game world as detailed and varied as Forza Horizon 5’s Mexico. How Playground managed to get the game to look this good without tanking performance, I’ll never know. If you’ve played the previous entry into the series, this one will feel very similar. Not that much has changed in the gameplay department, but why mess with a recipe that already produces such delicious cakes? That’s not to say there isn’t anything new here: you’ll find a bunch of new interesting stories and activities, as well as the new Accolades system, which will keep completionists busy for hours on end while providing a decent sense of progression. If you’re after a racing game that you can easily dip in and out of or spend hours hooning around in, look no further than Forza Horizon 5. It’s muy bueno.
Forza Horizon 5

Your Ultimate Horizon Adventure awaits! Explore the vibrant and ever-evolving open world landscapes of Mexico with limitless, fun driving action in hundreds of the world’s greatest cars.

Hollow Knight: Voidheart Edition

Hollow Knight: Voidheart Edition seems to constantly crop up as one of the best recent platforming games there is, and is currently rated at 4.40/5 on the site. It's a metroidvania which delves into underground caverns filled with insects — some friendly, some decidedly not — and gorgeous visuals. It makes you work for every scrap of story you find, and it presents a definite challenge, but if you're a fan of platformers, Hollow Knight is definitely one to try.
Hollow Knight: Voidheart Edition

Descend into the world of Hollow Knight! The award winning action adventure of insects and heroes. Explore twisting caverns, ancient cities and deadly wastes. Battle tainted creatures and befriend bizarre bugs. Uncover ancient history and solve the mysteries buried at the kingdom's heart.

Undertale

One of the most beloved indie titles of the modern age, Undertale is simply a must-play game. Don't let that simple art style tell you otherwise — this is an incredibly smart and creative RPG, and one where lethal force is entirely optional. Rather than beat your foes into submission, how about talking them out of a fight, petting them until they stand down, or simply enduring their onslaughts until they succumb to the fact that they're just wasting their strength on someone who just isn't going to fight back? Couple this inventive game design with constantly amusing dialogue and a top-tier soundtrack and you've got a recipe for a truly special experience... and one that you can enjoy right now with your Xbox Game Pass subscription. If it sweetens the deal at all, the Undertale achievements are straightforward enough to make this a pretty quick and easy completion, although we heartily recommend going above and beyond to see how Undertale evolves across multiple playthroughs. Trust us, you won't regret it.
Undertale

The world-famous indie RPG UNDERTALE comes to Xbox One! Fall into the underworld and explore a hilarious and heartwarming world full of dangerous monsters. Date a skeleton, dance with a robot, cook with a fishwoman...or destroy everyone where they stand. The future is yours to determine!

Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice

Some games do a few memorable things in an otherwise disappointing package, and some games are greater than the sum of their parts. Then some games are like Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice, where everything is done so well that it stands up to nearly all criticism. The puzzling and combat are both well designed even if neither is genre-redefining, and the audiovisual experience is a consistent spectacle. The ways it never cuts to loading screens and hides its UI makes it feel unique too, like we are right there with Senua every step of the way, but it's because of the story that Hellblade is forever cemented as something special. Senua is fierce and imperfect in a way that will have you rooting for her with an urgency that few characters ever garner. Her journey is pretty much unceasingly filthy, violent, tragic, and horrific, yet it's not a story of suffering, but rather one of perseverance. Senua is a remarkable character who instils all of her energies into the player in such a way that will never be forgotten.
Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice

From the makers of Heavenly Sword, Enslaved: Odyssey to the West, and DmC: Devil May Cry, comes a warrior’s brutal journey into myth and madness.

Set in the Viking age, a broken Celtic warrior embarks on a haunting vision quest into Viking Hell to fight for the soul of her dead lover.

Created in collaboration with neuroscientists and people who experience psychosis, Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice will pull you deep into Senua’s mind.

Psychonauts 2

Psychonauts 2 quickly jumped into the list of highest-rated Xbox Game Pass games, and has a rating of 4.6/5 from the TA community — you can also check out Luke’s Psychonauts 2 review to see why he thought it merited a 9/10! You play as Raz, a young psychic who has managed to join the ranks of the Psychonauts, but who soon finds out things are in complete disarray — there is a mole somewhere in the Psychonauts, and the platform-adventure game has you making your way through different mindscapes to find your foe. Psychonauts 2 launched to general praise, and has been deemed both a worthy successor to Psychonauts and a stellar game in its own right — so it had to be on our list.
Psychonauts 2

Combining quirky missions and mysterious conspiracies, Psychonauts 2 is a platform-adventure game with cinematic style and tons of customizable psychic powers.

Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition

Ori and the Blind Forest is utterly gorgeous, with a beautiful soundtrack to complement it. The lack of load times in Blind Forest helps the flow of the game and eases the frustration of the more difficult segments, while the platforming gameplay is fluent and precise all the way through. Difficulty spikes bring a challenging edge, and the escape sections are some of the most hectic portions of any platformer game. Ultimately, we cannot recommend this game enough — it is a must-play, as is its excellent sequel, Ori and the Will of the Wisps.
Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition

The forest of Nibel is dying. After a powerful storm sets a series of devastating events in motion, Ori must journey to find courage and confront a dark nemesis to save the forest of Nibel. Experience a visually stunning, hand-crafted adventure with a deeply emotional story in the Definitive Edition of Ori and the Blind Forest from Moon Studios.

Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age - Definitive Edition

To get one of the best traditional JRPGs in years on Game Pass is really quite the score, and although a lot of the classic (and even modern) Final Fantasy games — the bigger of Square's two big RPG series in the west — have come through the service over the last few years, Dragon Quest XI is an absolute must-play if you like those old-school turn-based battles. It's an absolutely beautiful game, packed with memorable characters and stunning settings, and while so many other JRPG franchises have run away from that turn-based gameplay of yore, Square's other big series is still doing the system proud. As you might expect, this is quite the time investment, with on-site estimates suggesting that a full completion will take you upwards of 100 hours, but with so much to see and do, your adventure isn't going to get stale despite that epic runtime.
DRAGON QUEST® XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age™ - Definitive Edition

The Definitive Edition includes the critically acclaimed DRAGON QUEST XI, plus additional scenarios, orchestral soundtrack, 2D mode and more! Whether you are a longtime fan or a new adventurer, this is the ultimate DQXI experience. You are the Luminary, a hunted Hero who must uncover the mystery of his fate with the aid of a charismatic band of adventurers.

Hades

You can’t think of excellence on Xbox Game Pass without thinking of Hades, which is just a prime example of when a game gets everything right — just look at Luke’s Hades review to see how highly we rate it! The TA community clearly agrees, since it currently sits as the sixth highest-rated game on Xbox Game Pass, and for good reason. You play as Zagreus, whose main goal is simple — to break out of the Underworld and make it to the surface. The actual act of doing that, however, is anything but; hordes of enemies stand between you and the surface, and death is inevitable. One of the factors that makes Hades so fantastic, however, is how well built it is for replayability. No matter how soon you die on each run, you go back to the start feeling as though you really made progress. The inhabitants of the underworld also react to your successes or failures, giving the impression of a richly alive game world. Hades is far from easy — check out Luke’s Road to 1K (0-1,000G) for more — but you’ll love every second of your time with it.
Hades

Defy the god of the dead as you hack and slash out of the Underworld in this rogue-like dungeon crawler from the creators of Bastion.

Stardew Valley

Can a “best of” list exist and not have Stardew Valley on it? Stardew Valley is a beautiful game, in which you take over a rundown farm and build it up from nothing, getting to know the valley and its people as you do. The day is yours in Stardew Valley — you can farm, fish, mine, explore, build relationships, and do whatever takes your fancy while enjoying the game’s wonderful soundtrack. You’ll find yourself getting more and more invested as you go on, and it’s definitely one of the harder games to put down for any length of time. Your character can only stay up so late and has limited energy, both of which provide the perfect amount of pacing; you’ll soon notice yourself planning out strategies for each day and each season as you work to wring the most productivity out of it as you can. Stardew Valley is a magical game, and being on Xbox Game Pass only makes it that much better.
Stardew Valley

You’ve inherited your grandfather’s old farm plot in Stardew Valley. Armed with hand-me-down tools, you set out to begin your new life. Can you learn to live off the land and turn these overgrown fields into a thriving home? Ever since Joja Corporation came to town, the old ways of life have all but disappeared. The community center, once the town’s most vibrant hub of activity, now lies in shambles. With a little dedication, you might just be the one to restore Stardew Valley to greatness!

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition

You couldn’t really have a “best of Xbox Game Pass” list without including Skyrim, so here it is. There’s not really another game like Skyrim for all-absorbing awesomeness. You’ve already got so much with the base game, but the Special Edition also includes all the add-ons and a bunch of graphical improvements like volumetric god rays, just to make it even more impressive. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition offers you hundreds of hours of content to sink your teeth into, and with its recent 10th Anniversary Edition having added even more content, we're not sure if you'll be able to escape the frozen landscapes of Skyrim once you start.
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Anniversary Edition

Winner of more than 200 Game of the Year Awards, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim celebrates 10 years of adventuring in stunning detail. The Anniversary Edition includes a decade worth of content: the critically acclaimed core game and add-ons of Skyrim Special Edition, plus pre-existing and new content from Creation Club including quests, dungeons, bosses, weapons, spells, and more.

Slay the Spire

Slay the Spire definitely earns a spot on this list just for the sheer number of hours you can sink into it. No matter how much you play, Slay the Spire never loses that attraction. It’s a simple premise done masterfully well, and although you die a lot, the unlocks of new items, relics, and characters keep it from feeling even a little stale, as does the fact that each time you set out to slay the Spire, you’ll follow a different path. Slay the Spire does have that one danger, though; you might promise yourself to play “just a few minutes,” and then look up to see you’ve somehow time-travelled and it’s hours later than you thought it was
Slay The Spire

We fused card games and roguelikes together to make the best single player deckbuilder we could. Craft a unique deck, encounter bizarre creatures, discover relics of immense power, and Slay the Spire!

Halo: The Master Chief Collection

A best Xbox Game Pass games list wouldn’t be complete without Halo — one of the most iconic first-person shooters of all time. And with the Halo: The Master Chief Collection, you’re getting a whopping six games that have either been remastered or optimised for both PC and Xbox Series X|S consoles and all bundled into one neat little package.

Aside from the collection’s six stellar campaigns that will keep you busy for hours, Halo really comes into its own when playing with others — whether that’s taking the fight to the Flood and the Covenant in a co-op campaign or battling it out in one of the many different PvP modes in multiplayer. The collection offers a staggering amount of content that will have you hooked for a long time (even more so if you’re an achievement hunter). With Halo Infinite on the horizon, Halo: The Master Chief Collection is the perfect starting point for beginners new to the franchise who maybe want to see what all the fuss is about before playing the next entry into the series, Halo Infinite.

Halo: The Master Chief Collection

Six games, one epic saga. The Master Chief's entire story is brought together and optimized for Xbox Series X|S. : Featuring Halo: Reach, Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary, Halo 2: Anniversary, Halo 3, Halo 3: ODST Campaign, and Halo 4, this is the definitive Halo experience.

Doom

The slightly more methodical gameplay loop of sequel Doom Eternal might be more to some people’s tastes, but for us, the purity and chaos of 2016’s Doom reboot still takes some beating. The breakneck pace of the game, the heavyweight punch of the varied arsenal, the visceral close quarters finishers that allow you to replenish on the fly… everything about Doom just feels right. It may have come a long way from its humble sprite-based beginnings, but this reboot perfectly captures and expands on the tone and feel of the 1993 original. Mick Gordon’s metal soundtrack is brilliantly brutal, and for anyone familiar with the older games, grabbing the shotgun as the familiar chugging of At Doom’s Gate kicks in will have you punching the air in delight. Doom can be extremely challenging — especially if you’re brave/stupid enough to crank up the difficulty — but it’s oh-so-rewarding when you manage to carve a path through a horde of Hell’s finest while barely taking a scratch. How much more metal could it be? None. None more metal.
DOOM

Now includes all three premium DLC packs (Unto the Evil, Hell Followed, and Bloodfall), maps, modes, and weapons, as well as all feature updates including Arcade Mode, Photo Mode, and the latest Update 6.66, which brings further multiplayer improvements as well as revamps multiplayer progression. Developed by id Software, the studio that pioneered the first-person shooter genre and created multiplayer Deathmatch, DOOM returns as a brutally fun and challenging modern-day shooter experience.

Tetris Effect: Connected

There are two types of people in this world: those who would tell you that Tetris is a perfect video game, and those who are wrong. While Tetris Effect: Connected might be the puzzle classic in its fanciest form to date, the fundamentals are as simple and as satisfying as ever — sort blocks neatly to make them all go away when you manage to make a full line, and repeat until the end of time itself. The hook here is that the presentation is tied to the tetromino-arranging action, with visuals pulsing and music evolving as you progress through a stage, not unlike Lumines or Rez. There’s even a great new twist on multiplayer, where several players team up to defeat a powerful AI opponent, and performing decently here allows you to combine all players’ wells into one single playfield where you can all go nuts and create huge lines to bring down the bot. A stylish take on a true gaming classic, although you’ll need some serious Tetris skills if you’re planning to go for the completion.
Tetris® Effect: Connected

Tetris® Effect: Connected is the original Tetris Effect with all-new co-op and competitive online and local multiplayer modes. This is Tetris® like you’ve never seen it, or heard it, or felt it before—an incredibly addictive, unique, and breathtakingly gorgeous reinvention of one of the most popular puzzle games of all time. Game leverages Smart Delivery allowing access to both the Xbox One title and the Xbox Series X|S title.

Tunic

Action-adventure game Tunic was a breath of fresh air when it launched into Xbox Game Pass. We play as a small fox in a big land full of secrets and mystery. Tunic doesn’t bother with a more traditional type of tutorial, but simply unleashes you into that world to fare as you will. Tunic is absolutely packed with hidden pathways, mysterious items, and secret shortcuts — as well as more than its own fair share of challenging bosses. Two of its greatest strengths are its gorgeous visuals, and the use of a mysterious language, coupled with the fact that you can discover scattered pages of the game’s instruction manual. Tunic creator Andrew Shouldice told us how important that mystery is to the game, likening its mischievous mystery to sneaking into an older sibling’s room and loading into somebody else’s saved game. Tunic brings back all that sense of a childhood adventure, while also pelting you with challenges that’ll test you whatever your age is. It’s a real Xbox Game Pass gem, and more than deserves its spot on this list.
TUNIC

Explore a land filled with lost legends, ancient powers, and ferocious monsters in TUNIC, an isometric action game about a small fox on a big adventure.

Minecraft

Minecraft, at this point, is a game that should need no introduction, thanks to it capturing the attention and imagination of millions of players since its inception in 2009. It’s the open-world sandbox game that gives you the tools to make grand fortresses, quaint villages, deep cavernous lairs, sky-high metropolises, or absolutely anything in between. Almost anything is permitted in the blocky builder, and it’s been used to create an incredible number of masterpieces and mini-games, as well as learning aids. Minecraft is also updated regularly with new content and new achievements. It’s an awesome game that has more than earned its place on any best-of list and seeing as it can be enjoyed by anyone, from children to adults, it’s a perfect addition to the Xbox Game Pass library.
Minecraft

Explore randomly generated worlds and build amazing things from the simplest of homes to the grandest of castles. Play in creative mode with unlimited resources or mine deep into the world in survival mode, crafting weapons and armor to fend off the dangerous mobs.

What are your big Game Pass recommendations, or favourite games on this list? Let us know down in the comments!