Hidden Gems of Xbox Game Pass

By nine, you mean *100 right?

Maybe I got lucky? Just slow and methodical with a ranged weapon and the sinew slicer doing most of the work. I only had a sliver of health when I beat HotK.

I'm pretty sure I've only done two more runs since I beat the Hand, I can screenshot my stats if I can remember! It's definitely a lot tougher with 1 boss cell.

Wanted to play something lighter after Outer Worlds so I started up Rage 2 and it's just goofy fun if you can take the swearing and the blood splatters. Hop in a car, drive for a bit, hop out and be invincible murder machine for a bit, back in car, repeat. It's colorful, irreverent and just plain fun. Don't know if it will hold up for the entire game, but a couple of hours here and there hits the spot.

I loved the first Rage. You’ve convinced me to give #2 a try.

I loved Mad Max, by the same devs as Rage 2. Anyone out there go from the former to the latter?

I enjoyed Mad Max and I also enjoyed my time with Rage 2 earlier this year. It's not too long and it's mindless fun, which is a good fit for Game Pass.

Darksiders III is now on Game Pass PC

And if you have never played Abzu, play it now. It is leaving GP on 11/30 and is a 2-3 hr chill underwater exploration game with no combat and only one shark related semi-jump scare.

Talos Principal is really good. Kind of like The Witness but more fast paced and a bit simpler. That said, it’s not a short game and there’s plenty of challenge to be had. There’s also a running theme of AI and sentience and philosophy underneath it all.

I’m very disappointed by the Munchkin game. I’ll admit that I didn’t make it past the tutorial, but it wasn’t the type of game I was hoping for. I’m a fan of the card game and though I didn’t expect it to be a straight digital translation of that, I was hoping it would be more like Slay the Spire than a crappy “party” game.

Did anyone else try it?

Demon's Tilt pinball was just added to game pass on Xbox and PC. I'm no judge of great pinball but this is reminding me of all the hours of fun I had playing Alien Crush and other pinball games on TurboGrafx-16.

Cool! Untitled Goose Game is coming to Game Pass (checks notes...)TODAY!

I've been wanting to play it, but I just hadn't pulled the trigger anywhere else.

(It says it's scheduled for December 17, but it doesn't seem like they've added it yet...)

Sometime earlier this month I had noticed Ashen was leaving Game Pass, so I made a mental note to get back to that--I put in probably 5 hours or so around when it launched and liked it, but just didn't have time for it. So last Friday evening, I was looking for something to play and decided I might as well give it a try. It suddenly clicked for me, and hard. I was having a lot of fun with it. I do find frustrating the way the map is structured--it seems like between zones of the map there is always some confusing road block and angle you need to take that the map doesn't convey--but otherwise I had a lot of fun with it. I probably put another 4 hours into it. At 1AM or so, I was wrapping up, and went to the Game Pass app to see when it expires, to think about whether I'd have time to finish it. But in the "Leaving Soon" tab, it wasn't there. Ah, I thought, I must have imagined this or something! Then I googled it, just to be safe, and learned at about 1AM on December 14th that the game was scheduled to be pulled on...December 13th. I guess it must be a PST deadline, because I could still launch it, but the next morning it was deactivated. Bummer! I can buy it for a discounted price of $32, but eh, I think I'll just move on instead. It was truly a hidden gem

Thanks for telling us about it when it is too late.

LeapingGnome wrote:

Thanks for telling us about it when it is too late. :P

What? It's just a really well hidden gem.

Dyni and I tried to tell y'all about it in February, but no one listened.

firesloth wrote:

Cool! Untitled Goose Game is coming to Game Pass (checks notes...)TODAY!

I've been wanting to play it, but I just hadn't pulled the trigger anywhere else.

(It says it's scheduled for December 17, but it doesn't seem like they've added it yet...)

WOW!! Stealth drop! Thanks for the heads up.

I'm surprised there still does not appear to be an Outer Wilds (NOT WORLDS) thread, but as a Game Pass game that I'm returning to again, I guess I will address it here.

I put probably 10-12 hours into this in the month of its launch, and found a lot to like, and I'm sure I posted about it at the time. Coming back to it in the past few days, I figured out some fun bits of it, particularly the Quantum Tower Trials on Giant's Deep, I loved those puzzles and found it to be one of the most satisfyingly game-y parts of the game. But I continue to bang my head against the biggest obstacle for me in this game, which is flight and movement are hard to control and easy to get yourself killed such that you have to start what you were doing from scratch. So I started leaning on some walkthroughs--I figured out for myself how to get to the Quantum Moon, which was really cool, but when I found the temple there with a bunch of symbols and a dial and stuff, I decided nah, I'm just gonna look up how to do this.

I'm now trying to decide whether to follow a guide to the end game just to see the ending of this game, or if I should just delete the game and let the experience stand as I had it. Right now, the fact that I am finding it impossible to navigate one part of Dark Bramble without getting eaten is the strongest reason I can see to just delete the game. I'll probably take a few more runs at that part of the game and let my success or failure make the choice for me.

I totally see why this is many people's game of the year. I think it could be mine, too, if the controls and my survivability were more forgiving, and/or if the structure were a little tighter. The combination of those challenges too frequently puts me in a position where I'm not sure if I'm mistaken in my idea about what I should do or if I'm just not doing a good enough job at executing my plan, which is never a great place to be in when playing a game.

Still enjoying Darksiders 3 on Game Pass PC. It's the Dark Souls of Darksiders games, and as Clocky best put it, Darksiders is Breath of the Wild for middle schoolers. Definitely worth the $4.99/month. Ok I'm done meme-ing. Was my post any good?

mrlogical wrote:

But I continue to bang my head against the biggest obstacle for me in this game, which is flight and movement are hard to control and easy to get yourself killed such that you have to start what you were doing from scratch.

I found that I did better with flying when I made extensive use of the button that brings you to a stop relative to whatever you're locked on to. I think it's the X button? Sorry, it's been a few months since I played. You can use that to bring yourself to a stop relative to planets to make it easier to land on them but also easier to orbit them and look for a specific destination. You can stop your shuttle then switch to the downward camera, and your movements will be relative to the surface which makes them easier to control.

The ability to stop is particularly useful in Dark Bramble when you're chasing down the signals inside there. Bring yourself to a stop, then orient yourself so that you're pointed directly at the signal or light that you're trying to get to. Accelerate toward it, then stop accelerating and let yourself drift toward your destination. If you've lined yourself up right, you'll drift past the fish without making them aggressive. They respond to your thrusters, so as long as you don't accelerate or course-correct going past them, you can go by as quickly as you'd like.

Hopefully that helps make navigation and flight a little easier.

Wait...is there a 'brake' button? Seriously? It's not always just a matter of balancing your forward and reverse until you just hit the right equilibrium? I choose to believe it is the game's fault that I did not know this I bet that will help, thanks!

If it makes you feel any better, I was about halfway through the game before I discovered that. But yes, there's a brake button. Like I said, I think it's X, but might be something different and I'm misremembering.

'Match speed' + the landing camera is the key to avoiding frustration when trying to land somewhere. Note that you can also match a target's speed while you're in your suit.

Dark Bramble was the most frustrating part of the game for me. After failing a few times I almost decided to be satisfied with the ending I had already seen:

  1. Remove the power core from the ash twin project.
  2. Kill yourself.
  3. Game over.

I ended up looking up how to get past the fish and it turns out that you can thrust near them, but only a single bar of thrust. Any more than that and they'll eat you. But that single bar give you the ability to navigate slowly around them.

I just bought seven months of game pass ultimate with my Microsoft points. If you use the Game Pass app you may have noticed that there are daily, weekly, and monthly quests that you can complete to earn Microsoft points. All you have to do to complete these quests are log into the app and play Game Pass games. I’m not even actively trying to complete these quests. I just open the app every couple of days and collect my points. A few of the quests want you to play specific games, but most of the quests just want you to play any game pass game.

This is why I use Bing for all my search engine needs. You get points for every search. You can run that up more by playing their daily trivia games, set up to use Bing to find the answers for bonus points.

I had about $150 saved up and bought some Black Friday games. Still have $70+ left. I already have GPU through 2022, so this has just become my gaming budget for stuff I can’t get via GPU or EA Access.

I’ve said before, even going back to when I PC gamer, the gaming value of theXbox is through the roof. I play more games and spend less money now. It’s not even close. Hell, it works out for MS because for the first time in 15 years, I’ve gone back to having a PC over a Mac, as we needed a new computer, so I used Black Friday to find good deals on a PC, Monitor and a video card. And I get access to all the PC titles for GPU.

Honestly, this is what I’ve been claiming would happen once the secondary market was eliminated. It’s not dead, but it is on life support. By turning secondary sales to digital, it has pumped money into the publishers, giving them room to make deal and compete with each other for our time and money.

You know what a total hidden gem on Game Pass is? Full Metal Furies. A side scrolling brawler ala Castle Crashers made by the guys that did Rogue Legacy, that is awesome in 2-4 player co-op (they make you use 2 characters and switch between them when playing solo) via local and online play. And don't let the brawler mechanics throw you off, there's a game spanning puzzle to solve that will rack your brain enough to make you break out pen and paper to figure out the solution, but in the best way possible.

You never heard about it because they totally ruined their marketing by trying to be clever and not mentioning the puzzle bits.

So I got my XBX yesterday, along with a 1 year XBL Gold subscription. The console also came with a few 1 month trial codes, and I had a slip of paper that I forget where I got it that had two more GP Ultimate 1 month codes on it. Then I decided it just made better economic sense to pick up at least one more year of Gold before I did the conversion, so I grabbed that too.

My account was currently subscribed to Game Pass PC monthly, only paid up through 1/9/20, and otherwise didn't have any subscriptions or credit. I added the two Gold subscriptions, which got me paid on that out through 12/21, though it might have been 2/22 because I think they gave an extra month each for turning on recurring billing. This made me laugh because for the second code, recurring was still enabled from the first one. I also redeemed another 1 month code from the box with another bonus month, taking me out to 4/22.

Then I did the upgrade to Game Pass Ultimate for $1 thing. That's coming with 3 months now, and it did the conversion of existing time, which meant I had Ultimate paid for out through 7/22. Then I entered the two 1-month Ultimate codes, expecting that to give me another two months, except both of THOSE also did the extra month for leaving recurring billing on, so it actually took me out through 11/22. So in total, for $120, I wound up with basically three years' worth of Ultimate. That's...not half bad, and also pretty funny.

Chaz wrote:

So in total, for $120, I wound up with basically three years' worth of Ultimate. That's...not half bad, and also pretty funny.

That deal is absolutely redonk! Unless there is a brand new hotness that you can’t live without, you won’t need to buy any games for the next three years. Game pass even gets brand new hotness from time to time. Gears 4 and Outer Worlds we’re both available on GP a few days before you could buy them.

I’m set through 6/2022 after upgrading to Ultimate a few months ago. Just got a gaming PC for Christmas, and now got even more games to play.

Took a few hours to work through a few Game Pass downloads.

Rage 2: I had been mildly interested in this before launch and stopped paying attention when I heard it was not well received, but have noticed the occasional person saying "it's not that bad!" so I was still willing to put some time in. After maybe 45 minutes with it, I can say I am shocked by how terrible this game is! It is indeed that bad! It flails around that same Borderlands sort of storytelling attitude where our main character is introduced in a sequence where their allies are murdered in what is supposed to be comically gory fashion and they chuckle with their friend about which of them will get credit for more kills. Then we someone else get killed and we are supposed to feel very sad about it and care about this conflict. Maybe there's a game where this tone works, but Rage 2 sure ain't it. Nothing about the game play grabbed me and the menus and interface were sluggish in a way I haven't seen in a game in a long time. Also, my first load into the game featured me looking at the character select screen while I was notified about like 10 pieces of loot I had earned that made no sense to me. I'm short: thumbs down.

Devil May Cry 5: I spent maybe an hour or so with this and it's not for me, but I can see the quality there and maybe if I gave 5 hours to it I could get sucked in. But I didn't immediately grok the combat and the story stuff was stylish and attractive in a way but just not what I'm into.

Bloodstained: I think I might like this? I beat the first boss and explored the castle a bit. Whether I stick with this will depend on how easily I can pop in for an hour here or there every few weeks.

The first hour or two of Rage 2 is garbage. Once you get a few of your powers, though, it's a blast.