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The best free Xbox Series X games

Xbox Series X has built up an impressive roster of games since launching in 2020. From fast-paced FPS games to challenging RPGs, Microsoft’s new-gener console has something for everyone. But with most new games clocking in at an eye-watering $70, it’s not always possible to play every blockbuster release. Thankfully, Xbox Series X is also home to a surprisingly deep library of free-to-play games.

From Fortnite and Splitgate to Warframe and Halo Infinite, here are the best free Xbox Series X games.

Further reading

Overwatch 2

Overwatch 2
65%
T
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Shooter
Developer
Blizzard Entertainment
Publisher
Blizzard Entertainment
Release
October 04, 2022
Overwatch 2 makes a few big tweaks to the original’s formula (such as a new 5v5 format), but returning players should immediately feel right at home. Every playable character from the old game is still playable, along with many of its maps. You’ll also get to experiment with a few new characters and a PvE mode that’s expected to drop sometime in 2023. Whether you’re a returning player or new to the franchise, Overwatch 2 is definitely worth checking out — especially since it’s free.
Overwatch 2 - Free to Play Trailer - Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase 2022

Knockout City

Knockout City
77%
E10
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Fighting, Shooter, Sport, Adventure, Indie
Developer
Velan Studios
Publisher
Electronic Arts
Release
May 21, 2021
After a brief stint as a premium game, Knockout City has officially switched to a free-to-play model. And while it might look approachable thanks to its cutesy graphics, Knockout City is actually a highly competitive action game. You’ll be tasked with smacking the other team with rubber dodgeballs — faking throws, lobbing shots, and catching incoming balls along the way. Beyond its highly nuanced dodgeball mechanics, there’s a deep customization system that gives you plenty of ways to kit out your character and stand out on the battlefield.
This Is Knockout City: Official Gameplay Trailer

MultiVersus

MultiVersus
71%
T
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Fighting, Hack and slash/Beat 'em up
Developer
Player First Games
Publisher
WB Games
Release
July 19, 2022
MultiVersus is essentially the Warner Bros. version of Super Smash Bros. Instead of playing as Link, Mario, Kirby, and Pikachu, you’ll get to pummel your opponents into oblivion as Batman, Shaggy, Bugs Bunny, Arya Stark, and tons of other familiar faces from the Warner Bros. catalog. Each character offers their own unique skillset to master, and with plenty of updates planned for the future, now is a great time to check out the free fighting game.
MultiVersus - Official First Look Reveal

The Sims 4

The Sims 4
73%
T
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), Mac, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Role-playing (RPG), Simulator
Developer
The Sims Studio, Maxis
Publisher
Electronic Arts
Release
September 02, 2014
With The Sims 5 officially in development, you can now access The Sims 4 base game for free. You’ll get to customize your character, build your dream home, and determine how your Sim spends their day. The level of detail is truly staggering, with hundreds of available items giving you endless ways to personalize your playstyle.
First Look: The Sims 4 Official Gameplay Trailer

Fall Guys

Fall Guys
78%
E
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Platform, Sport, Indie
Developer
Mediatonic
Publisher
Devolver Digital, Epic Games
Release
August 04, 2020
Although it’s not nearly as popular as it was at launch, Fall Guys is still an incredibly fun game. The quirky battle royale has you racing through obstacle courses and participating in other wild game modes in an attempt to outperform the competition and advance to the next round. Colorful graphics, impressive level design, and the adorable bean-shaped main characters make it hard not to crack a smile while playing — even if you’re one of the first eliminated.
Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout - Official Trailer | Summer of Gaming 2020

Halo Infinite

Halo Infinite
85%
4/5
T
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Shooter
Developer
343 Industries
Publisher
Xbox Game Studios
Release
November 15, 2021
Although Halo Infinite‘s campaign is a premium experience, its multiplayer offering is entirely free. The gameplay somehow manages to blend old-school mechanics with modern convenience, and fans of the series will no doubt find a lot to love about the new entry in the series. Aside from the standard offering of both casual and ranked play, there’s also a surprisingly massive Battle Pass that provides you with plenty of incentive for diving into another match. Unlocking new tiers takes quite a while — but 343 Industries said you’ll be able to unlock the rewards even after the current season ends.
Halo Infinite - E3 2019 - Discover Hope

Fortnite

Fortnite
69%
4/5
T
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), Mac, Android, iOS, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Shooter, Role-playing (RPG), Strategy
Developer
Epic Games
Publisher
Epic Games
Release
July 25, 2017
It should come as no surprise, but Fortnite is available for free on Xbox Series X. The battle royale is a perennial favorite and comes with a host of upgrades on next-gen consoles — including improved graphics and performance. Constant updates, a robust creative mode, and crossovers with popular franchises such as Marvel and Star Wars have kept players coming back for years. Fortnite‘s future is incredibly bright, and one of the best ways to experience the colorful mayhem is on your new Xbox Series X.
Fortnite Trailer

Call of Duty: Warzone

Call of Duty: Warzone
72%
4.5/5
M
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Genre
Shooter
Developer
Infinity Ward
Publisher
Activision
Release
March 10, 2020
If you like your battle royales with a bit more grit, skip out on Fortnite and dive right into Warzone. Featuring the same fast-paced combat you’ll find in premium Call of Duty games, Warzone adds in the massive world to explore, deep progression, and the unique 1v1 Gulag mechanic. Warzone is always experimenting with new modes, giving you a reason to dive back into the frenetic action. There’s also an intriguing story that plays out in the background, as new sections of the map are unlocked and you learn more about the struggle taking place on the battlefield.
Call of Duty®: Warzone - Official Trailer

Warframe

Warframe
76%
M
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Shooter, Role-playing (RPG), Adventure
Developer
Digital Extremes
Publisher
Digital Extremes
Release
March 25, 2013
Warframe is a third-person shooter that is best played with a few friends. While it’s entirely possible to grind through the main campaign solo, teaming up with a few other Tenno makes for a much better experience as you coordinate attacks and shoot your way through hordes of enemies. With customizable characters, upgradeable weapons, and a surprisingly deep endgame, Warframe is a free-to-play game that’ll easily get you hundreds of hours of entertainment. If you get hooked, dropping a few dollars will let you expand your inventory and quickly unlock alternate characters.
Warframe | Open Beta Launch Trailer

Apex Legends

Apex Legends
78%
T
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Shooter
Developer
Respawn Entertainment
Publisher
Electronic Arts
Release
February 04, 2019
There’s no shortage of great battle royales on Xbox Series X — but Apex Legends is more than worthy of your attention. The squad-based shooter can be enjoyed without dropping a dime, although passionate fans can crack open their wallets to unlock new skins and cosmetic upgrades. Developed by the same people responsible for Titanfall, Apex Legends offers a level of mobility not seen in other shooters. Clamber up walls, slide down hills, and build momentum as you hurtle toward the next circle. Its tight shooting and impressive cast of characters offer a deep level of strategy, and its ever-evolving story keeps you interested in their struggle.
Apex Legends Official Launch Trailer

Rocket League

Rocket League
83%
E
Platforms
Linux, PC (Microsoft Windows), Mac, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Sport, Indie
Developer
Psyonix
Publisher
Psyonix
Release
July 06, 2015
Rocket League recently switched to a free-to-play model, bringing high-flying soccer action to the masses. Pick a car, trick it out with decals, wheels, and toppers, then head to the pitch and try to ram a massive soccer ball into the other team’s goal. It sounds bizarre — and no doubt it is — but it’s probably the most fun you’ll have with a free game. Like many free-to-play titles, Rocket League offers cosmetic upgrades as a premium purchase. But rest assured that spending money won’t give anyone the upper hand — they might look fancy, but those cosmetics won’t make them a better player.
Rocket League® - OMG It Has Everything!

Destiny 2

Destiny 2
74%
4.5/5
T
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S, Google Stadia
Genre
Shooter, Role-playing (RPG), Adventure
Developer
Bungie
Publisher
Activision
Release
September 06, 2017
Destiny 2 is already a fantastic game, but it’s even better on Xbox Series X thanks to its next-gen update. Jump into the free game on your new console and you’ll be able to run it with a 4K resolution at up to 120 frames per second. The game also loads much faster than it did on last-gen consoles, letting you skip those lengthy load times between missions. While much of the game is available for free, there’s a bunch of excellent premium content available if you’re willing to spend a few bucks.
Destiny 2 - A Long Day Trailer (Official)

SMITE

SMITE
69%
T
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch
Genre
Strategy, Adventure, MOBA
Developer
Titan Forge Games
Publisher
Tencent Games, Hi-Rez Studios
Release
March 25, 2014
It’s not as popular as Dota 2 or League of Legends, but Smite is among the best MOBAs available on Xbox Series X. It’s also a free-to-play title, so there’s no reason to not give it a try. Although it was first released in 2014, Smite has seen constant updates and content patches — and has a surprisingly active fanbase. While many of the MOBA tropes are present in Smite, things play out from a third-person perspective as opposed to the usual isometric, top-down view. This brings you up close to the action and offers a fun twist on the genre you won’t see in many other games.
SMITE - Cinematic Teaser

Dauntless

Dauntless
67%
T
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Role-playing (RPG), Adventure
Developer
Phoenix Labs
Publisher
Phoenix Labs, Epic Games
Release
September 26, 2019
Dauntless is cut from the same cloth as Monster Hunter. Much of the fat is cut from the experience, letting you dive right into the main attraction — massive battles against towering behemoths. You’ll still be able to upgrade gear and customize your character, but don’t expect the same deep RPG mechanics found in its older cousin. Still, Dauntless is a wonderful free-to-play game that’s easy to sink hundreds of hours into. Whether you’re playing with a few friends or queuing with randoms, Dauntless makes it easy to have fun while out on the hunt.
Dauntless - Announce Trailer

Splitgate

Splitgate
77%
T
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Shooter
Developer
1047 Games
Publisher
1047 Games
Release
May 22, 2019
Splitgate takes the tight gunplay of Halo and melds it with Portal. Whether you’re using the system to quickly traverse the map or sneak up on unsuspecting foes, there’s no doubt it adds another layer of strategy to Splitgate. What started out as a niche indie game quickly ballooned in popularity, as players flocked to the game due to its unabashedly old-school design. Tons of new content has been added over the past few months — and all of it is available on Xbox Series X for free. Microtransactions are present, but they’re largely for cosmetic items and have no bearing on your in-game performance.
Splitgate - Official Console Release Date Trailer | Summer of Gaming 2021

Roblox

Roblox
71%
E10
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), Mac, Android, iOS, Xbox One
Genre
Platform, Simulator, Adventure
Developer
Roblox Corporation
Publisher
Roblox Corporation
Release
September 01, 2006
Believe it or not, Roblox is actually one of the most successful games on the planet. The world-building sandbox managed to pull in around $1 billion several years in a row, and it shows no sign of slowing down. Roblox gives players the freedom to build their own virtual worlds and hang out with friends around the globe. The possibilities are nearly endless with the game, and players have created everything from simulated governments to simple concert venues. Think of Roblox as a virtual Lego set, and you wouldn’t be far from the truth.
ROBLOX - Game Trailer

Brawlhalla

Brawlhalla
68%
E10
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), Mac, Android, iOS, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch
Genre
Fighting, Platform, Indie, Arcade
Developer
Blue Mammoth Games
Publisher
Blue Mammoth Games
Release
April 30, 2014
A platform that draws inspiration from Super Smash Bros, Brawlhalla pits up to eight fighters against each other in fast-paced, 2D combat. Cross-platform play makes it easy to join up with friends on other consoles — and since the game is free, there are always thousands of brawlers ready for a battle. Cosmetic microtransactions allow the game to remain a free-to-play experience, and a premium battle pass offers plenty of rewards for your hard work. Mastering the game is a challenge, but the basics are easy enough to learn so that anyone can have a bit of fun with this arcade fighter.
Brawlhalla CZ Let's Play
Jon Bitner
Jon Bitner is a writer covering consumer electronics, technology, and gaming. His work has been published on various websites…
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