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10 Best Xbox Game Pass Games (January 2023)

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Ship ShapeMass Effect: Legendary Edition

Read moreXbox Game Pass is one of the few subscriptions I’ve kept around while other services got the chop. The $15 monthly fee for Xbox Game Pass Ultimate feels worth it because I get to choose from over 100 titles and regularly download new additions. In a year, the cost breaks down to about the price of three AAA games.

An Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription comes with access to EA Play and Xbox Live Gold. If you’re not interested in online multiplayer games, Microsoft offers a more budget-friendly tier that costs $10 a month. For gamers not on Xbox, PC Game Pass ($10/month) has many of the same titles. (Got a PlayStation or Switch? Check out our guide to the most popular game subscription services.)

To help you choose which ones to download first, WIRED sifted through the Game Pass catalog and rounded up outstanding titles we think you’ll enjoy. From recent releases to excellent throwbacks, our genre-spanning picks for the best Game Pass games have a little something for all players.

Courtesy of NicePlay Games

Aesthetic AlchemyPotion Craft

Get your mortar and pestle ready! In Potion Craft, you collect the tastiest mushrooms and the smelliest herbs to mash, blend, and sell to the townsfolk. Be prepared to haggle with stingy customers who drive a hard bargain. Also, don’t hand out mediocre concoctions often or your alchemist’s reputation will suffer. The idyllic business management sim is a soothing way to spend an evening.

Available on Game Pass for Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC.

Courtesy of EA Games

Ship ShapeMass Effect: Legendary Edition

Although the next installment for the Mass Effect series remains in the distant future, this remastered trilogy from BioWare is an engaging set of games for science fiction aficionados. Returning players may find satisfaction in revisiting the 2007 release; new players might enjoy playing an accessible piece of history that continues to impact contemporary games. If you can look past a cumbersome user interface, the overall experience is worth it.

Available on Game Pass for Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC.

Courtesy of The Outsiders

Beat SlayerMetal: Hellsinger

Original music meets Doom-style gameplay in Metal: Hellsinger. Successfully slay your enemies by attacking in sync with the pounding rhythms of hell. Yes, it’s a bit gimmicky, but the short game from The Outsiders refuses to overstay its welcome. Now only if we could play the game backwards to expose the hidden, demonic messages …

Available on Game Pass for Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC.

Courtesy of Obsidian Entertainment

Local ArtistPentiment

Pentiment is the best game released in 2022 you might have missed. In this adventure game, you are an intrepid artist living in 16th-century Bavaria who wants to uncover the truth about a murder. Visually striking and narratively complex, it’s a top-tier title that only takes a couple of weeks to finish. Check out WIRED’s interview with Pentiment’s director, Josh Sawyer, for an in-depth discussion about the game.

Available on Game Pass for Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC.