It’s billed as the best deal in gaming: Microsoft’s Game Pass on Xbox and PC gives players instant access to an impressive library of free games. In the era of expensive mega-consoles and high-priced games, Game Pass is an oasis for empty-wallet gamers—just maybe not for their backlogs.
Recently, I downloaded Halo: Infinite and fought my way through the campaign. In previous eras, a new Halo meant a day one purchase. This year, money has been a bit tight, and I likely would have had to delay liberating Zeta Halo from The Banished. Thanks to Game Pass, I started the campaign the day of its release.
The beauty of Game Pass though is not games like Halo: Infinite, which I certainly would have played regardless. What makes Game Pass so special is the freedom to try games I might otherwise have deemed unworthy of the financial risk.
I’m embarrassed to write this, but one of those games was Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice, which I recently downloaded. I would never have risked spending full price on this game—and my goodness would I have missed out. If it weren’t for Game Pass, I wouldn’t have discovered this game with stunning visuals, deep writing, and engaging gameplay. And that’s the thing: I get to have this experience again and again because there’s so many others out there to try.
Finally, I must say that it’s quite liberating to quit games I don’t like and that Game Pass gives me the freedom to do that. I’ve been a gamer for nearly 40 years, and for most of that time, when I bought a game, I played it. (Or it sat there in my backlog gnawing away at my soul). But with such a large library of free games, I no longer feel this burden. I refuse to grind my way through a mediocre game when so much potential is out there.
Tell us what you think! What are your favorite games that you have tried on Game Pass? Share your reactions in the comments below or join the conversation on Boss Rush Discord and Facebook.