The lack of big first-party exclusives (so far!) for the Xbox Series X/S doesn’t seem to deter fans from picking up the console. Thanks to the tremendous value of GamePass, and the promise of the launch-day release of Xbox’s burgeoning first-party titles, Xbox Series X/S is just about primed to be a must-have console to play some of the biggest game releases.
With 2023 off to a promising start with Hi-Fi Rush from Tango Gameworks, and Starfield on the horizon, there are many games to watch for Xbox players.
Below is our ongoing list of the best games to play on the Xbox Series X/S for this year, and we will update it with our monthly recommendations, so have this page bookmarked for regular check-ins! The list is sorted by the date, with the latest game on the top.
Best Xbox Games 2023
Star Wars Jedi: Survivor
Genre: Action-Adventure | Release Date: April 28, 2023 | Platform: PC, PS5, Xbox Series X/S | PEGI: 12
The hotly anticipated sequel to Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order is finally releasing after a short delay. With the original game garnering high praise and equally good sales, Respawn Entertainment’s Star Wars Jedi: Survivor has tremendous hype, and expectations, behind it as it promises yet another galaxy-spanning action-adventure starring our good ol buddy Cal, his mini robot companion, BD-1, and the numerous characters that he will meet.
Dead Island 2
Genre: Action-RPG | Release Date: April 21, 2023 | Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S | PEGI: 18
The long-delayed sequel to 2011’s popular zombie fest is finally upon us. Published by Deep Silver and developed by Dambuster Studios, Dead Island 2 promises a stylish, vibrant, gore-drenched Los Angeles to explore and cut through hordes of zombies with unique weapons and abilities.
Genre: Action-Adventure | Release Date: April 12, 2023 | Xbox Series X/S | PEGI: 12
Considering Microsoft purchased Bethesda Softworks and, in turn, developer Tango Gameworks, the exclusive release of Ghostwire: Tokyo on the PlayStation 5 last year was a bit awkward for all parties involved. However, as the one-year exclusivity deal ends, Tango’s weird, odd, and excellent action-adventure title is finally releasing for Xbox Series X/S. This version will include the Spider’s Thread update, new story cutscenes, additional areas to explore, a bonus game mode, and several quality-of-life improvements.
Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty
Genre: Action-Adventure | Release Date: March 3, 2023 | PEGI: 16
Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty is the newest entry into the ever-growing Souls genre and is developed by Team Ninja, who successfully made their name with another Souls game with the Nioh series. The game is a dark fantasy action RPG where players fight off deadly creatures and enemy soldiers using swordplay based on Chinese martial arts.
The game has already been released to great applause from fans and critics alike and currently sits at 81% Metacritic score. The game is available on both old-gen and next-gen platforms, as well as on Xbox GamePass.
Resident Evil 4 Remake
Genre: JRPG | Release Date: March 24, 2023 | PEGI: 12
Hailed as the best the horror genre has to offer, Resident Evil 4 is a genre classic that inspired many horror games after its original release in 2005. Capcom, in its relentless pursuit of remaking its classics, is giving the same treatment to Resident Evil 4. But unlike its previous attempts that largely updated the visuals and added a few new features here and there, this remake is built from the ground up and will feature new stories and a few surprises. This is undoubtedly this month’s most anticipated release and will be a treat for horror fans.
Octopath Traveller II
Genre: JRPG | Release Date: February 24, 2023 | PEGI: N/A
Octopath Traveller II is the sequel to 2018’s highly acclaimed RPG and is a must-play for fans of the genre. It borrows many original designs and gameplay elements but tells a brand-new story, so you don’t necessarily have to play the first game to understand what’s happening. The series is known for its retro pixel art and 3D graphics and engaging turn-based combat.
Genre: Fantasy, Action-Adventure | Release Date: February 10, 2023 | PEGI: 12
Hogwarts Legacy directly answers the question, “What if someone cared to make a great game set in the Harry Potter universe?”. While we have had some Harry Potter games before, nothing matches the scale and quality that Hogwarts Legacy provides.
Developed by Avalanche Studios, the game is set during the 1800s (much before Potter came along), where you – a new 5th-year student in Hogwarts – must learn how to craft potions, discover fantastic beasts, battle dark wizards and uncover ancient secrets that threaten the very existence of the magical world.
What sets the game apart is the love and care that went into recreating the multi-layered and vast hallways and passageways of Hogwarts and surrounding areas, giving Potter fans a true 1:1 representation of the world described in the books and brought to life with the movies.
Genre: Horror | Release Date: January 27, 2023 | PEGI: 18
Dead Space is often cited as one of the finest horror games ever made, so for EA to attempt to remake the game was controversial in and of itself. You don’t dare touch a classic unless you can do it justice – and to EA’s credit, they absolutely nailed it.
The Dead Space remake stays true to the core formula of the original, providing spine-chilling thrills and incredibly satisfying gameplay, now with updated visuals that run smoothly. Being a remake built from the ground up, the developers have also made significant changes to modernize the game. Still, it remarkably doesn’t take away anything from what made the original game unique. We hope to get a remake of Dead Space 2 (but please skip the third instalment) and a modern continuation of the classic horror franchise.
Genre: Rhythm-based Action-Adventure | Release Date: January 25, 2023 | PEGI: N/A
Tango Gameworks are usually known to develop weird but stylistic horror games, so it took everyone by surprise when they shadow-dropped Hi-Fi Rush, a bright, rhythm-based action-adventure for Xbox and PC. And the thoroughly excellent game only accelerated its hype, garnering terrific reviews from critics and fans.
Hi-Fi Rush’s super flashy, almost-anime-like visuals are incorporated into a rhythm-based gameplay mechanic approaching the genre with a fresh perspective. Almost everything in the game, from your character, your robot companion, to the objects in the background, moves to a specific rhythm – match that when in combat. You can pull off stylish moves and killer combos while scoring high on the grading system.
But if you are not into rhythm games at all, the game is extremely forgiving and doesn’t require you to play the game in any specific way to progress. Hi-Fi Rush is one of the finest games to release this year, and it’s one game that should be on your must-play list, and the fact that it’s available for free on GamePass on Xbox and PC is the perfect gateway to trying out the game.