In total, the Xbox Game Pass now has over 300 titles on offer for Xbox, PC, or compatible devices, leaving subscribers to the service spoilt for choice. With even more great games coming to the Game Pass in 2022, there hasn’t been a better time to join the service.
Of course, this selection isn’t limited to big studio titles, as the Game Pass also excels in bringing in great indie games, including some amazing titles like Hades and Outer Wilds. There are a lot of indie games to choose from, and these are just the best of what’s included in the Game Pass.
The 2020 sequel to the original roguelike platformer developed by Derek Yu as a Microsoft freeware game in 2008, Spelunky 2 picks up where the original left off with fun platforming mechanics backed by unique game design. Indie games often excel when it comes to 2D platforming, even making up some of the best platformers on the Nintendo Switch.
Spelunky 2 continues that legacy in style, with great cave-exploring action that can provide plenty of fun for any player. The game can also be played with friends, including a way to play the game cooperatively online and to have player vs player battles in Arena mode.
One of the many titles that prove that being an independent game studio doesn’t necessarily mean your games have to be limited in ambition, Outer Wilds is a unique open-world mystery that takes place in a solar system that has been trapped in a time loop. The game puts the player in the shoes of a new recruit for a space program as they look for answers to the mysteries of their world.
Developed by Mobius Digital, the game is packed with secrets with ways to explore and discover them firsthand. Outer Wilds is a game that uses its mystery to hook players in and is one of the best indie titles at doing so.
Cris Tales has incredibly unique and stylish artwork but it’s also a solid RPG well worth playing for the touching time-traveling adventure it offers a player willing to invest the time. Developed by Colombian game studios Dreams Uncorporated and Syck, the game was released last summer, with the Xbox Game Pass now making it even easier to pick up.
The player takes on the role of Crisbell in a beautifully-realized fantasy world as she discovers her own powers to influence time, jumping between past, future, and present to cause different effects. Whilst the game has some drawbacks and the turn-based RPG gameplay isn’t too different from the norm, it is still an adventure well worth having.
Dead By Daylight
Playable on Xbox One and Xbox Series X on the Game Pass, Dead By Daylight was initially released in 2016, meaning the fact it continues to hold a solid player base is a testament to just how good the multiplayer survival-horror game is. In the game, one player plays as a character from the horror world, a killer or monster of some kind, and tries to kill the four other players.
This simple gameplay concept leads to a lot of thrills, scares, and laughter, depending on how the player wants to enjoy it. Whether working together with friends to try to survive the night or enjoying the power of being a horror movie killer and making the survivors run in fear, the game is always fun.
Hollow Knight: Voidheart Edition
Players with the Xbox Game Pass can play not just one of the most iconic indie games of the last five years but its expanded version in the form of Hollow Knight: Voidheart Edition. The game is a cool Metroidvania-style side-scroller that is as spectacular-looking as it is difficult.
The inclusion of the expanded edition with new foes, new upgrades, and a whole lot more on the Xbox Game Pass is just one reason to try it out now. The game actually put Team Cherry on the map as an independent studio and made them an indie game developer well worth keeping an eye on.
With the release of chapter 2 of the follow-up Deltarune late last year, there isn’t a better time to go back and play the original indie game hit that spawned a massive internet community and so much more. The game is now over six years old but remains timeless in its iconic pixel-art visuals, memorable characters, and sense of humor.
With neutral, pacifist, and of course, an infamously difficult genocide route, Undertale has plenty of replayability even for players that have already experienced the game.
For something completely different, Superliminal is a first-person puzzle game that is unashamedly weird and confusing. The game is inspired by perspective and optical illusions and it shows, as it often forces the player to take a step back and look at things in a new way in order to progress.
How hard the game turns out to be depends entirely on how willing the player is to think outside the box and be creative in how they try to solve puzzles, as well as their ability to not be frustrated by apparently impossible ones. As one of the most unique games on the Game Pass, Superliminal is a great title to check out.
Library Of Ruina
A library might not sound like the ideal location for intense combat but Library of Ruina utilizes its location to great effect in this strategy game. In the game, the player is put in charge of a library and has to employ librarians to fight against guests, who turn into books when they are defeated.
Surprisingly, this turns into an engaging and even addictive battle simulator-style game, with cards and dice used to determine the outcomes of battle. Library of Ruina is the perfect game for anyone who enjoys strategy games and likes to see the format utilized in interesting ways.
There isn’t much that hasn’t already been said about the indie dungeon crawler that has won countless awards, including being the first video game to win a Hugo award. Its console release this year meant it remained one of the highest-rated games of 2021, according to Metacritic.
Hades takes place in the Underworld in Greek mythology, with the player taking the role of Zagreus, a son of Hades, who wishes to escape from the cursed realm. In order to do so, the player must beat difficult challenges and bosses in a world that is constantly shifting. For any player that hasn’t yet experienced the game, the Game Pass is a great opportunity to do so.
Not every indie game has to be an artistic masterpiece and, for those players who just want a game to mess around in for a few hours and have huge amounts of fun, Gang Beasts may be the best game on the entire Xbox Game Pass. The game is a ridiculous multiplayer party game that mostly revolves around attempting to wrestle with both other players and the game’s controls.
There are tons of different environments to serve as arenas for combat in the game, including an aquarium from which giant octopus tentacles emerge to cause even more chaos as the players attempt to fight. The game is playable on consoles and PC and is a great one to play with friends.
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