The eighth generation of consoles was released all the way back in 2013. Looking back at that time, all I can say is that time flies. Microsoft’s entry into this generation came with their console named Xbox One which later saw two upgrades the Xbox One S and the Xbox One X. The Xbox One family of consoles were leagues above their younger brother, the Xbox 360 and the generation as a whole produced some of the best titles in all of gaming we have seen so far. Whether it was graphical fidelity, immersive storylines, or creative gameplay, the 8th generation shined bright and I am here to talk about some of the best games that launched on the Xbox One. The games in this list are in no particular order and are just the best Xbox One games that the console has to offer for 2023. Let’s jump in.
Best Xbox One games to play in 2023
Here is the list of the best Xbox One games that you can play right now.
Sunset Overdrive – Best Xbox One games
Let’s start with a title from the early days of the console. With Sunset Overdrive, developer Insomniac created a playground where fun stood front and center. This game was a culmination of everything that makes a video game, a video game. Bright colors, quirky characters, an Imaginative world, a story not to be taken seriously, and endless amounts of fun.
You traverse the world by grinding on rails, jumping on cars, running on the side of buildings, and fighting monsters that are like zombies but came to be because of a bad energy drink. You heard that right.
Sunset Overdrive has brilliant weapons, amazing enemy design and variety, crazy boss battles, character customization that knew no bounds, innovative and fun gameplay, pure unadulterated chaos, and a rock-solid frame rate. The game is quite underrated but is one of the bests out there.
If Halo is the franchise that defines Xbox then Gears is a close second. This series needs no introduction as I am quite sure we all remember the war against the Locusts that Marcus Fenix fought to bring peace to Sera. Gears of War 4 was released midway in the generation and introduced us to the new generation of COG through the eyes of Marcus’s son JD and his friends Kait and Del.
Gears 5 cranked the dial up to 11 and showed us what the pinnacle of modern-day third-person cover shooters can look like. The visuals have always been the defining factor of the Gears franchise and Gears 5 set the bar way too high with attention to detail and quality unmatched by its rivals. The story and the characters are some of the best the Gears franchise has ever seen with life-like expressions and some of the best voice actings I have ever seen.
The Multiplayer and Horde mode also received a lot of love and added layers upon layers of replayability and fun. The newly introduced Escape mode was also a fun new addition. If there is one franchise on Xbox that is as cinematic as it is fun and gory, it’s the Gears franchise. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for this one as Gears 5 left quite a mark on me.
Everyone’s favorite bald-headed assassins returned this generation with a trilogy of games. While both Hitman 1 & Hitman 2 were great games in every sense of the word, Hitman 3 takes the cake because not only did it perfect the silent assassins approach these games are known for. But also allowed us to play the levels from all three games in one single package.
In the Hitman trilogy games, this generation went back to their roots of open-ended level design and we are all the more thankful for it. Each game came with its own set of locations that you get to explore as Agent 47 and find creative ways to eliminate your target.
From a fashion show in Paris to a hospital in Hokkaido, from the slums of Mumbai to a bank in New York, from the tallest skyscraper in Dubai to a nightclub in Germany. Hitman takes you across the world of assassination and focuses on infinitely replaying these levels to find alternate paths, hidden weapons, and gadgets and find unique ways to get rid of your assigned target. The best man for the job is back with the ICA and the Hitman 3 is his best venture to this day.
Red Dead Redemption 2
I’ll start by saying that never have I ever played a game like Red Dead Redemption 2. Developer Rockstar knows how to make an open-world game that feels alive, is rich in detail, and comes with a brilliantly written story. The tale takes place in 1899, the end of the wild west and the beginning of the modern-day civilized world.
You play as Arthur Morgan, a senior gun in the Van Der Linde gang and the right-hand man of Dutch van Der Linde himself. The journey takes you across the frontier of America where you and the gang fight to survive. I won’t spoil a lick about the story as I truly believe it is one of the best ones ever written for any video game and is something that everyone should experience for themselves.
The world of the game is the most alive world I have personally ever seen and with how massive it is, it’s astounding how detailed and rich every single area feels. Whether you just wanna get immersed while riding on horseback or want some of that gritty 1899 gunslinger action, Red Dead Redemption 2 will fulfill your fantasy of becoming a cowboy and is one of the very best video games ever made.
Batman Arkham Knight
Set across a single night of crime and chaos in Gotham City, Batman Arkham Knight lets you play as the man himself to stop Scarecrow and bring peace back to his beloved city. Whether you are lurking on rooftops, sneaking behind foes, or driving the batmobile, the game oozes with the atmosphere.
And speaking of atmosphere, this is the best rendition of Gotham city I have ever seen in any form of media related to Batman. The rain-drenched streets, the obnoxiously giant moon, the rumble of thunder, the insurmountably tall buildings, the streets covered in muck and dirt, the storefronts with shattered glass, and the criminals running amok on the streets. Developer Rocksteady captured Gotham the way it was meant to be and put the player at the forefront of it.
The story is great, the visuals breathtaking, the gameplay unmatched, and the rogue’s gallery on display is just incredible. For Batman fans, superhero fans in general, and even people who are not into superheroes, Batman Arkham Knight is a must-play.
Life Is Strange Games
Let’s shift gears from gameplay to just the story for a second. You must’ve heard about the Life Is Strange franchise by now. What started as a single, self-contained story, has sort of turned into a universe of its own now. Whether it’s Life Is Strange 1, Life Is Strange Before The Storm, Life Is Strange 2, or the more recent Life Is Strange True Colors if you plan on picking any of these games then make sure to buy a box of tissues as well.
These games will make you cry. The voice acting is top-notch, the dialogue may seem cringe at first but it grows on you as it’s very well written for what the games are trying to go for. But the star of the show for me has to be the soundtrack. These games come with a selection of licensed indie rock/chill-hop type music which is just phenomenal to listen to.
Life Is Strange is one of those franchises that came out of nowhere and popped. The stories focus on characters who feel relatable but as the name suggests, come with a twist towards the strange with superpowers like rewinding time, telekinesis, and reading emotions. Even if you aren’t old the game somehow manages to feel nostalgic and remind you of the “old days”. The Life Is Strange games are some of the best stories that came with this generation and I highly recommend everyone to go check them out.
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
This game has garnered more praise and earned more awards than any other I know. What can I add of value while talking about it that hasn’t been said already? Geralt of Rivia is one of the most badass characters ever created, a monster hunter (Witcher) for hire who is looking for his adopted daughter Ciri is how the basic premise of this game goes.
You come across incredible mythic creatures along your journey and meet a cast of memorable characters in both main and side quests. Since it’s an RPG (and one of the best at that) the game focuses on leveling up Geralt and equipping him with the right potions, tonics, and spells depending on the situation. The combat is well thought out and requires mastery. The open world of the Northern Realms and Skellige Isles feel like they were ripped straight out of a painting. There is nothing the Witcher does that isn’t a masterclass in every right.
And the choices it offers will truly impact how every conversion and future scenarios go, and the game offers you 36 different endings! The replayability at hand is truly astounding. There is no doubt that the Witcher 3 is one of the best games ever made and in my opinion, you should start playing this masterpiece as soon as you get the chance!
Assassin’s Creed Origins
This game started the new era of Assassin’s Creed and told the story of how the brotherhood was formed. Bayek of Siwa, a Medjay in ancient Egypt is the playable character who is on a warpath, trying to find and assassinate the people who killed his son.
We get to explore the entirety of Egypt and experience the new Action-adventure format that the Assassin’s Creed games were taking moving forward. The world was beautiful, the characters detailed, the voice acting was impressive, and the gameplay was solid. Assassin’s Creed Origins gave us the first taste of what AC games were going to be like moving forward with new systems and a massive world. It did all of that with near perfection and did so without overstaying its welcome. The games that came out after this are great in their own right too but Origins nailed the formula, unlike the follow-ups.
In a single game, they nailed the protagonist Bayek so well, that he stands up there, with the legendary Ezio in my eyes. The tale of Bayek is one I’ll remember for years to come and would recommend anyone to go check it out for themselves.
Forza Horizon 4 – Best Xbox One games
I know Forza Horizon 5 is out and it’s phenomenal but that’s a cross-gen game. We are focussing on the games solely made for the Xbox One and Forza Horizon 4 was one of the best racing games ever made. Horizon games have always focussed more on fun and less on simulation in comparison to the Motorsport series. Forza Horizon 4 took us to Britain and was beautiful, fun, and addictive.
The game innovated with the idea of seasons which brought some incredible diversity to the map that changed week over week. Unlike previous entries, the seasons were not static for this game as they changed week over week from Summer to Autumn to Winter to Spring. Each season brought with it a visual overhaul of the map but it also changed the driving conditions. Roads were wet in the Spring so it required you to drive more carefully while during the winter the lake would get frozen and you could go drive over it.
Forza Horizon 4 came with a huge list of cars, buyable properties, some of the best visuals ever in a game, an almost never-ending list of events, and cemented itself as one of the best racing games ever made. All of these things are only topped by Forza Horizon 5 which we’ll discuss later in another list. If you are looking for a racing game then this is the game that you should definitely check.
Grand Theft Auto 5 – Best Xbox One games
Let’s end with a bang and cheat a little while we are at it. I know this is not an eighth-gen game but can you blame me for putting it here? Grand Theft Auto 5 is one of the best video games ever made. Period. That much is clear, but the reason for putting this game here is because GTA Online reached its peak here and not on the 360.
The story, though not the best GTA tale, is still great and this time around it does a lot of experimentation. For the first time, you get 3 playable characters that you can switch between any time you want, and because of that the narrative feels fresh and is quite innovative. The world of Los Santos and the surrounding Blaine County is rich with detail and is beautifully crafted. GTA Online, however, is the star of the show. Whether you love it or hate it, it’s a thing. Millions of people play it and Rockstar constantly updates it for free. GTA Online basically allows you to build your criminal empire and go on crazy heists with your friends.
I cannot describe this game in one paragraph but then again, it doesn’t need a description. Rockstar Games are some of the best developers in the industry and games like GTA 5 and Red Dead Redemption 2 are perfect examples of how a high-budget open-world game should be in today’s day and age. I cannot wait to see what they do next.
Phew, that’s been a long one! Look, this generation produced bangers after bangers and truly showed us the artistic side of games and how immersive a video game can be. If I didn’t cover your personal favorite I apologize but these have been some of the best games that you can play on your Xbox One. Let me end by saying that there’s a lot more from where that came from and you can never go wrong when it comes to the world of video games. You can check out more features here at Gamertweak. See you next time!