Welcome to the first instalment of The Best on Xbox Game Pass for PC! This monthly roundup will be an unashamedly subjective look into the games that have grabbed my attention and managed to carve out a chunk of my precious free time.
If you have never heard of Xbox Game Pass for PC, or know about it but haven’t yet given it a go… Go and subscribe, right now. Xbox Game Pass for PC provides unparalleled access to a huge library of quality games, including all Microsoft Studios games, for as little as AUD $4.95 per month. For the price of a coffee, you get a month’s worth of access to more games than you can poke a stick at! It is the absolute best value I have ever seen in the videogame world.
Remember, these choices fully reflect my bias. If they are not your cup of tea, head over to Xbox Game Pass for PC and check out the entire catalogue. It is vast, constantly updating and there is sure to be something for everyone.
Microsoft Flight Simulator
It will come as no surprise to anyone who follows Blog of Dad that Microsoft Flight Simulator tops my list. It is the game I have been looking forward to all year and it has definitely lived up to the hype.
I am just scratching the surface, but already I feel that I have a better understanding of the basics of aviation. I have fewer mid-air disasters and I have even managed to land a plane or two (I’m still working on completing the entire procedure on the runway, but baby steps…) This game has me seriously considering peripherals like the Logitech Flight Yoke, it is that immersive. Expect to see Microsoft Flight Simulator high on this list for months to come.
Forza Horizon 4
I have always been a sucker for good racing games. It doesn’t matter if they are arcade racers, full-blown simulators or somewhere in between – if it goes fast and has four wheels, I’ll give it a crack.
Forza Horizon 4 sits somewhere in the middle of arcade and simulator. It borrows heavily from the physics and car dynamics of the Forza Motorsport series, but implants them into an open-ended world in which you can drive through walls and knock down small trees with barely a scratch to your Bugatti Chiron.
Way back in the day, Need For Speed III: Hot Pursuit was my all-time favourite racing game and Forza Horizon 4 evokes similar feelings. I think it is the frenetic pace and relative freedom that brings those memories flooding back.
While I have been happily working my way through the single player storylines, it is the multiplayer Eliminator that has really grabbed my attention in the past week. It is a battle royale, but in car racing form and I can’t get enough of the action. It is extremely addictive, very challenging, requires healthy doses of both luck and skill, and a whole lot of fun! Eliminator has certainly helped me to hone my skills, and taught me valuable lessons about when it is okay to take a shortcut, and when it is better to stick to the road.
Is this the best game I have ever played?
Does it have a detailed, engaging storyline?
So why is it on this list? Because for half an hour of destroy everything and create mayhem fun, it is an absolute blast! For me, this game represents what is so great about Xbox Game Pass. Never in a million years would I have purchased Goat Simulator, yet because of Game Pass I was able to have half an hour of the most mindless, destructive fun that I have had in a long time. There were several genuine laugh out loud moments in this absurd game.
Crusader Kings III
This one just came into game pass, and not without controversy. Crusader Kings III is a real time, board game-style RPG with a very interesting premise and some eyebrow-raising possibilities. The learning curve seems to be fairly steep and, to be honest, I’m just not sure I’m willing to commit the amount of time needed to master this one. Perhaps I just lack the necessary brain power… Nevertheless, it has my attention for now!
Resident Evil 7: Biohazard
Turn the lights out, put on an EPOS SENNHEISER GSP 601 Gaming Series headset and have a spare set of pants close by. The original Resident Evil was the first video game to truly terrify me (from the first damned zombie, no less) and it is good to see that the series has upped the ante ever since.
The first person viewpoint adds an extra element of immersion to the game, somehow ramping up the terror levels to 11. Seriously, everything freaks me out in this game. Everything. Of course, it doesn’t help that within the first hour of gameplay my wife has cut off my hand with a chainsaw and some bug-eating weirdo is insisting I call him “daddy”.
Deliver Us The Moon
I downloaded Deliver Us The Moon primarily to test out the ray tracing effects on my PNY GeForce RTX 2070 Super 8GB XLR8 Gaming Overclocked Edition. Needless to say, the visuals are stunning (especially for RTX owners). The gameplay is also enjoyable, with an interesting storyline and puzzle-based progression. It certainly makes me think at times, although embarrassingly I got stumped at the first hurdle and had to turn to a walkthrough which pointed me to the bleeding obvious. I’m pleased to report that my brain has warmed up since then and I’m actually able to pay attention enough to figure most things out for myself. I’m hoping to reach the end of Deliver Us The Moon, although Microsoft Flight Simulator, Forza Horizon 4 and Resident Evil 7 are sucking up most of my free time right now.
Get Game Ready
My recent article on the DIY PC build gives some great pointers for anyone looking to build a gaming/multifunction PC that is worthy of the Xbox Game Pass for PC. I’ll be honest, it feels pretty great every time a game like Forza Horizon 4 recommends running on Ultra settings. Check out the article for details, or these specifications from my build: