12 Best Free Xbox Series X And S Games You Can Download Right Now

With thousands of games available across every platform, choosing what to play can sometimes be a difficult task. The Xbox Series X|S is no different in that regard, with players able to choose from a vast array of games. Whether it's the latest blockbuster, such as "Hogwarts Legacy," or an indie gem that released with little fanfare, the Microsoft console has something to offer everyone.

But what about those who don't want to splash out their hard-earned money every week to try out new games? Well, the system is also home to an ever-growing collection of impressive titles that can be downloaded and played without spending a cent. Some of them utilize free-to-play models that include additional purchases, while others have simply been made available to everyone to download without any cost whatsoever.

Here's a selection of great free games available on the Xbox Series X|S that are definitely worth checking out.

Killer Instinct

"Killer Instinct" is a series that most gamers would associate with Nintendo. Yet, the Rare-developed game actually began life as an arcade release before being ported to the SNES. The studio's close relationship with Nintendo meant that subsequent games were mostly exclusive to consoles made by the Japanese company. That all changed when Microsoft acquired Rare, an event that eventually led to the release of a brand new "Killer Instinct" game coming to Xbox One. The reboot of the series is also available on Xbox Series X|S thanks to backward compatibility but without any performance enhancements.

Like its predecessors, "Killer Instinct" has a heavy focus on executing complicated combos to heavily damage opponents. This requires players to smoothly link together several different types of moves in quick-fire sequences while avoiding combo breakers that will end the streak. But the fighter also has a few new additions, such as unique special abilities for each character that gives them a specific advantage during battles. It was well received for the most part, attracting praise for its fluid action and balanced gameplay. The main criticism at launch was a lack of playable characters, a situation that has now been remedied with new DLC packs and updates — although these do require additional purchases.

Fall Guys

"Fall Guys" was one of the surprise hits of 2020, initially launching on PC and PlayStation 4 with a standard release model. The Mediatonic title, which has since been acquired by Epic Games, can best be described as a cross between a battle royale game and the television series "Wipeout." With a game show format, players complete various challenges, mini-games, and obstacle courses as they compete to stay in the game and avoid elimination. With up to 60 players taking part in each match, multiple rounds are often necessary to whittle down the contestants to a sole victor.

The game proved to be an immediate success upon its release and by 2021, the developer announced plans to transition "Fall Guys" to a free-to-play model as it was released on new platforms such as Nintendo Switch and Xbox. Those who opt to try it out on Xbox Series X|S get access to improved performance and visuals, with the most advanced console able to play the game at 4K resolution while maintaining a frame rate of 60 FPS. "Fall Guys" even supports cross-platform play, so it is possible to battle it out against friends who own other consoles. With constant updates that bring a constant supply of new content, it is a great game to keep coming back to.

Call Of Duty: Warzone 2.0

Activision was always likely to enter the battle royale market at some point. The sheer popularity of the new genre combined with the fact that big hitters such as Epic Games and EA were getting a huge slice of the pie made it a near certainty. In 2020, the publisher did just that by releasing the first iteration of "Call of Duty: Warzone" as part of the second season of "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare." The game essentially transfers the multiplayer experience from the mainline series to a huge setting, allowing 150 players to fight inside a massive open map.

"Call of Duty: Warzone" offers several modes, allowing players to jump into the action alone or as part of teams of up to four, with special events often taking place to add new mechanics or change game modes and the map. Cash, which can be looted from players or in-game drops, gives users the chance to use special Buy Stations to unlock specific loadouts and gain access to bonuses in the form of killstreaks.

To coincide with the release of "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II," Activision launched "Call of Duty: Warzone 2.0." This operates as a sequel and features a new map as well as fresh game modes like DMZ and Resurgence, meaning there's plenty of choice for potential players who want to try out the battle royale game.

Overwatch 2

Unlike many other free-to-play shooters that focus on battle royale gameplay, "Overwatch 2" and its predecessor are much smaller and more tightly focused games. Matches typically consist of just two teams of five players each, with every user choosing a hero from a pool of more than 30 characters. These range from offensive classes that are designed to deal out massive amounts of damage quickly to support classes that are intended to provide buffs to other players. Matches are made up of a randomly chosen game mode and map during online multiplayer, with a variety of modes that involve carrying out certain objectives while also trying to eliminate the enemy team.

Unlike the first "Overwatch" game, the sequel is fully free-to-play and offers players the opportunity to unlock new heroes and content through a Battle Pass system similar to "Fortnite." Another difference is that this new game has several permanent PvE modes, allowing players to team up cooperatively to tackle story levels or waves of enemies in specially made maps. Critics broadly agreed that the changes speed up the gameplay without losing any of the nuance that made the original so popular, ensuring it is a choice that should guarantee fun for fans of fast-paced hero shooters.


Although the Xbox Series X|S has plenty of fighting games, such as "Mortal Kombat 11" and "The King of Fighters XV," it is lacking in platform fighters. This genre is best typified by the "Super Smash Bros." series, where competitors usually have to defeat their opponents by forcing them off the stage rather than depleting their health bar. It is a nice twist on the fighting genre and can be more accessible for those who are familiar with typical fighting games or don't want to worry about learning dozens of complex combos.

Fortunately, there is an option for a platform fighter for those not on a Nintendo console. "Brawlhalla" is a Blue Mammoth Games fighter that is published by Ubisoft. In the game, players can take charge of a wide array of characters from various franchises such as "Adventure Time," "Rayman," and the WWE. While crossover characters usually come with an additional cost, a small selection is often rotated as a free sample to players. Like "Super Smash Bros.," the goal in this game is to knock opponents off the stage platforms by punching, kicking, or throwing them. The more damage dealt out to an enemy, the further they will be hit when you land a successful attack. With a good selection of game modes on top of the many stages and available characters, "Brawlhalla" is brilliant value and one of the best fighters on the market.

PUBG: Battlegrounds

Once known as "PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds," "PUBG Battlegrounds" is a battle royale game that originally began life as a variant of the "Day Z" mod for the game "ARMA 2." Taking inspiration from the Japanese film "Battle Royale," which gave the genre its name, it pits 100 players against each other as they vie to be the sole survivor in a huge map filled with weapons, vehicles, and usable items. It set the standard for many gameplay elements that have become standard, including a reducing safe space and players jumping from an aircraft onto the map.

Where "PUBG: Battlegrounds" stands out from other battle royale games is that it has a focus on realism. Whereas games like "Fortnite" and "Apex Legends" have highly stylized graphics and colorful visuals, this is a game that looks more akin to a military shooter. That may well be more appealing to adult players who want a more mature experience. Despite its age, the title maintains a strong player base and is still being updated regularly so is still worth playing today. After spending most of its life as a premium title, "PUBG: Battlegrounds” transitioned to a free-to-play model in 2022, meaning that it is now possible for anyone with an Xbox Series X|S to jump in and try it out.

Apex Legends

The popularity of battle royale games such as "Fortnite" has led to many studios launching their own takes on the genre in an attempt to get a share of the audience. Rather than simply copy these other titles, though, EA and Respawn Entertainment went a different route with "Apex Legends." Set in the same fictional universe as the "Titanfall" series, this battle royale game features many of the same mechanics you'd expect, such as a shrinking map and a last-man-standing victory condition. But the game isn't just another standard battle royale game.

First, "Apex Legends" stands out for its emphasis on teamwork. While other battle royale titles often include the ability to play with friends, this EA release is built around working as part of a small group. There are also the characters themselves, known as Legends in-game, that each has their own distinctive abilities. These two elements combined together make "Apex Legends" more strategic than its rather chaotic competitors and requires players to take a more deliberate approach.

Those who have previously played "Apex Legends" on older systems may well notice some improvements as well. The Xbox Series X|S version of the game has a steady 60 FPS frame rate, with 120 FPS support in the works, as well as including 4K resolution, high-dynamic range, and a higher level of detail.

Rocket League

Developed by Psyonix, "Rocket League" is actually a sequel to the earlier "Supersonic Acrobatic Rocket-Powered Battle-Cars," a vehicular soccer game where players try to score goals with giant soccer balls using different cars. The second game, which originally released for PC and PlayStation 4 in 2015, has the same basic premise but included a number of gameplay changes to try and address issues found in the first title.

With its focus on teamwork and a more accessible approach, "Rocket League" proved immensely more popular than its predecessor and was soon ported to more platforms. The Xbox Series X|S version even allows players to up the frame rate to 120 FPS, providing even more precise control. But no matter what platform "Rocket League" is played on, there's little denying that it is chaotic fun.

Like many other popular free-to-play games, "Rocket League" actually started out as a premium title that had to be purchased. However, the game moved to its current modelin 2020. This change also brought a number of modifications to the title, adding cross-play and progression as well as new ways to earn cosmetic items. Players don't even need to be subscribed to an online multiplayer service, such as Xbox Live, to play the game online either.


"Fortnite" has grown to become one of the most popular games in the world and is regularly played by hundreds of millions of players each month. Originally beginning life as a cross between a tower defense and zombie survival game, it quickly transitioned to become the battle royale game that has dominated the industry over the last few years. While it wasn't the first example of the relatively new genre, it did help popularize the idea of battle royale games and set the standard for every other similar game to come.

The game sees up to 100 players battle it out on a large map that features a shrinking playable area to force users to come into conflict with each other. "Fortnite" also features building mechanics as well as the ability to collect new gear, such as weapons and gadgets, to open up strategy options. There's also a series of cosmetic items for players to purchase individually or unlock as part of a seasonal Battle Pass, with crossovers including DC Comics, "Dragon Ball," and "Star Wars."

With full support for cross-platform play, "Fortnite" is the perfect shooter to jump into if you have friends that own other consoles as it allows everyone across all systems to play together. The Xbox Series X|S version even comes with some nice improvements, such as 4K resolution support at 60 FPS and faster load times.

Halo Infinite

Following something of a rough patch since the departure of Bungie, the "Halo" franchise might well be heading in the right direction again with the release of "Halo Infinite." Like the previous entries in the series, this 2021 game focuses on Master Chief and his fight to keep humanity safe from a variety of threats. It received widespread praise for its new open-world setting and the fact that it had returned to its roots in terms of gameplay despite some initial criticism for its visuals when the game was first revealed.

Although "Halo: Infinite" can be purchased in the same way as other "Halo" games, only the campaign is actually a premium release. The multiplayer portion of the title is entirely free-to-play, a first for the franchise. This means that anyone can download and jump into a multiplayer match online without the need to buy the full game, with access to every mode and game type. This included Big Team Battle matches that support up to 24 players as well as the more traditional modes such as Assault, Capture the Flag, and Deathmatch.

Fallout Shelter

When people think of the "Fallout" series, most will not typically jump to management simulators. After all, the franchise is built around deep RPG experiences that extend back decades. However, 2015 saw Bethesda expand the post-apocalyptic series in a new direction with the release of "Fallout Shelter." As the name implies, this game is set within a Vault where citizens can hide away from the horrors of the wasteland, with players put in charge of maintaining the facility. Originally available only on mobile devices, it has since become available for every major platform, including the latest consoles.

Overseeing a Vault requires management of every detail to keep the shelter running smoothly and free from any threats. Of course, keeping the dwellers inside the underground building is also an important aspect of the game. Users have to provide power for the shelter as well as fresh water and food for those inside to consume. It's also possible to give dwellers jobs and train their skills, while training guards to set up defenses against ghouls, raiders, and other enemies. Some fans of the series might be put off by the lack of a proper narrative, but "Fallout Shelter" offers an enjoyable management experience that isn't as intense as many others, meaning that it can be played in a more casual manner.

The Sims 4

The oldest inclusion in this list, "The Sims 4" is the latest mainline entry in the social simulation franchise. It first launched in 2014 for PC and has since been ported to almost every other gaming platform. Like the previous entries in the series, the gameplay revolves around building homes and managing the lives of Sims, virtual characters that have needs and can be completely customized by users. Meanwhile, online features let users upload creations for others to use and interact with other worlds. Despite some initial criticism over a lack of content, "The Sims 4" has become a bestseller, moving more than 10 million copies.

EA moved "The Sims 4" to a free-to-play model in 2022 after years of the game being a premium title. However, this only included the base game, with DLC and other packs remaining locked behind a paywall. But the publisher did make a promise to continue developing new content for the game and keep updating it to address fan concerns and requests in the future. For those who enjoy the free experience, there are more than a dozen expansions that add new locations, features, and items.