27 Most Underrated Games for Xbox Series X / S
It doesn’t matter what console you own. Chances are that there are a ton of games that have slipped under your radar. The thing is that the same games that often tend to go unnoticed by you also go unnoticed by most others.
Luckily, we are here to help you. Having combed through hundreds of games available on the Xbox Series X and Xbox One, we have managed to find games that are not that well-known, but you would be a fool not to give them a try.
These games encompass a variety of genres, and there is something for everyone here. From games that prioritize action above everything else to games that encourage you to think strategically, the following list has it all.
So, let’s dive into the 27 most underrated games for Xbox Series X / S.
The Titanfall series, in general, has been one of the most underrated game series in the entire industry. When it comes to the Xbox, Titanfall 2 was released alongside some of the biggest names in the FPS genre such as Call of Duty and Battlefield. As such, it did not receive a lot of attention when it launched.
That said, the game is a testament to the amount of work the developers put into it. It is by far one of the most detailed and in-depth FPS games out there. The single-player campaign does a good job of maintaining the player’s interest and does not seem too short or too long.
When it comes to multiplayer, you will find some of the most skilled players on Xbox playing Titanfall 2. The game was initially released for the Xbox One in 2016, and most of the players playing the game right now have been playing it since launch. As such, it will take a while for you to get used to all the game’s intricacies, but the wait is definitely worth it.
Primarily developed by a single person, Iconoclasts was also on our list of the best Indie games for Xbox Series X / S. It took almost seven years to make the game, and that is evident in the game’s attention to detail and advanced story.
There are two arcs to the story. You play the role of Robin, a mechanic who does not have a license. This makes you a failure in your mother’s eyes. It doesn’t help that the world is falling apart and there are agents from a mysterious organization known as One Concern after you.
You play through both of these arcs simultaneously, and they begin to converge towards the end of the game. When it comes to the gameplay, Iconoclaststs is primarily a puzzle platformer. Despite its long story, it does not feel like the game is becoming boring at any point.
The puzzles themselves are difficult enough to feel like a challenge but never become so difficult that you may become frustratingly stuck. As far as indie offerings on the Xbox go, this is one of the best ones.
It Takes Two
It Takes Two may be the most underrated co-op game for the Xbox. It is another indie offering and was also on our list of the best action games for Xbox Series X and S.
It Takes Two revolves around a dysfunctional couple whose marriage seems to be on the verge of collapse. When both of them are turned into dolls, it is up to them to work together to find their daughter and have them turn back into normal human beings.
With a story that is both heartwarming and insightful, It Takes Two is the ideal game for both friends and couples to play together. Fundamentally, It Takes Two is also a puzzle game. However, the puzzles require more than one person in order to be completed.
Those who purchase the game also get a pass for their friends, which will allow them to play the game with someone who does not own a copy of it.
If you are looking to play a fighting game that isn’t one of the household names but still packs a punch, Killer Instinct is it. This is a game that manages to compete with Mortal Kombat 11 when it comes to the fighting mechanics.
There are a lot of characters for you to play, with each of them having a unique move set that will require time to be mastered. You can also play the game for free as long as you are okay with using only one character for all of the game modes.
We did not find the story mode to be particularly engaging. However, that is a problem that we have with most fighting games. The main draw of Killer Instinct is the online multiplayer, where you will find some of the most skilled players taking part in ranked leagues. Once you combine that with the stunning visuals, Killer Instinct is a game we would recommend to any fan of fighting games looking for something new to try.
Hydro Thunder did not make our list of the best racing games on Xbox. However, that does not mean that the game is not fun to play. The only reason we didn’t put it on our list was due to the fact that the game lacks depth when it comes to game modes and replayability.
That said, the arcade mechanics of this water-based racer are extremely enjoyable. There are a handful of game modes for players to try, and the single-player is good enough for you to get a couple of hours out of.
However, the main reason to play this game is because of its split-screen multiplayer. It is possible to play the game with up to four other players, and the kind of havoc you can wreak in the races will have you and your friends laughing for hours.
It might be a bit controversial to call Brawlhalla underrated due to the fact that the game has a small but extremely dedicated fanbase (that never shuts up about it). However, the fact is that there are a lot of players that have never tried this masterpiece.
This is a fighting game where up to eight players can compete against each other. You can play against your friends locally or go online and compete in the ranked ladders.
Once again, the skill ceiling in the game is exceptionally high. As such, it may take you a while to get used to playing online. Once you are past that, you will be able to appreciate the game for what it is: A highly competitive fighting game that requires everything from lightning reflexes to strategy.
Lost Odyssey is a game that is regularly featured on our lists of the best Xbox games. In fact, it is a well-known fact that the game is one of the best JRPGs on Xbox.
The game was initially released on the Xbox 360, but can be played on the newer generation of consoles due to the backward compatibility provided by Xbox. Just to be clear, this is not a remaster. The game looks outdated when it comes to both the visuals and the combat. However, the developers created a masterpiece of a story, and this makes Lost Odyssey a must-play for fans of JRPGs.
There is also a lot of content available to players. Chances are that you will find yourself playing the game purposefully at a slower pace than necessary so that you absorb everything that it has to offer.
If you are into RPG shooters, you will love Outriders. This is the second game on our list of the most underrated Xbox games to place a heavy emphasis on co-op gameplay. It is possible to play Outriders with up to 3 other players, with each of you having both individual campaigns that you can play separately.
The great thing about Outriders is that it has a unique sci-fi setting not seen in many other games. On top of that, this is a game that is almost as fun to play alone as it is to play with friends. The campaign is long just like other RPGs, but it does not feel too grindy at any point.
While the story may leave a little to be desired, the gunplay more than makes up for it. Overall, Outriders is a game that action-RPG fans should definitely try.
Immortals Fenyx Rising: A New God
While Xbox fans do not have access to The Legend of Zelda, they do have access to Immortals Fenyx Rising: A New God. This game is one of the best Zelda-like games available on the Xbox.
It manages to combine all of the exploration and dungeon-crawling that is common in Zelda games with advanced and modern combat mechanics. The game is based on Greek mythology and has a lot of heroes and gods that stay true to ancient Greek lore.
If the gameplay is good, the story is great. What is especially intriguing about Immortals Fenyx Rising is the dialogue between various characters of the game. While the characters are almost always discussing something serious, they take a rather laid-back and hilarious approach to it. This makes for an entertaining adventure that any Zelda fan should try.
Monster Truck Championship
It is difficult to look past the Forzas and the F1s of the world when talking about racing games on the Xbox. However, Monster Truck Championship is a great game for both fans of the trucks and those just looking to have fun with giant vehicles.
In Monster Truck Championship, you can compete in races and freestyle tournaments. The races are not that fun and we wouldn’t really recommend them. The freestyle, however, is the bread and butter of the game. You can basically do everything you want from performing flips to riding your truck on two wheels.
Once again, the only problem with the game is that it is a bit lacking when it comes to content. Unless you enjoy the online component of the game, you may find yourself bored after a few hours of gameplay.
Considering just how often Death’s Door makes an appearance on one of our lists, you may be surprised to find that we consider it to be one of the more underrated games on the Xbox Series X and S.
The fact is that not a lot of people have heard about the game. That is a shame because Death’s Door provides a great story mixed with a brilliant art style. You play as a crow that is supposed to real the souls of the dead. Your job is pretty boring until a soul escapes and you have to track it down.
While the combat is nothing to write home about, this is a great game for people that want to play a game that has a serious story but is also relaxing and a little laid-back.
Warframe is a game that had been out on PC for quite a while before it was released on consoles. However, even if you have played the game on a computer, you will find the experience to be quite different on consoles.
The base game is still the same. But you have access to new content that the developers keep on adding to the game. Warframe is a third-person shooter that allows you to do a lot of things from taking part in a single-player campaign to fighting other players in online battles.
Your warframe (the character you use) can be upgraded almost to the point of infinity, and chances are that you will find yourself playing the game, again and again, to get to the next level. While there is a little bit of a grind required, the gunplay is quite solid and should allow fans of shooter games to enjoy the game for hours on end.
World of Tanks
World of Tanks has had one of the most aggressive marketing campaigns in recent years. As such, chances are that you have heard of the game, but have never bothered to give it a try. While we won’t go as far as the influencers who say this is one of the best games ever, there is no doubt that this is a game that fans of war games will enjoy.
As the name suggests, you control a tank and try to take out other tanks on the battlefield. There isn’t a lot of reason to try the single-player campaign, simply because it tends to get boring very fast. However, the multiplayer aspect of the game is something that you should definitely play.
The game is not that hard to learn, although the skill ceiling is quite high. The biggest problem is that you will not have access to good weapons at the beginning of the game. However, the game will get easier as you progress, unlock, and upgrade your tanks. There aren’t that many games that exclusively focus on tanks, which is why fans of mobile military weaponry should give World of Tanks a shot.
Control is a third-person action game that has you take control of an agent whose secret organization has to contend with a supernatural threat. The game uses a lot of supernatural elements in the game, and this makes the combat in the game quite interesting.
The game is equal parts action and exploration, and you will be meeting a lot of allies and enemies on your journey to discover what exactly is going on. The combat might be unique, but it is the story that makes Control stand out.
The only problem that we have with the game is that there is no multiplayer, and the single-player campaign is not nearly as long as some of the other games on our list of best underrated games on Xbox.
Sherlock Holmes: Crimes and Punishments
If you are into detective games, then we would highly recommend that you try out Sherlock Holmes: Crimes and Punishments. There aren’t a lot of detective games made nowadays, but Sherlock Holmes takes the crown from the few that are.
You play the role of Sherlock Holmes and try to solve six different mysteries. Unfortunately, the one problem that we have with this game is that there isn’t a lot of content beyond the six cases that come with the game.
Still, fans of the genre will have to make use of all of their detective skills and intuition to get to the end of the cases. The one good thing going for the game in this regard is that all of the cases are almost completely unique from each other. As such, the game does not become boring at any point until you get to the end of the six cases.
Werewolf: The Apocalypse – Earthblood
The first thing that immediately stands out about Werewolf is its stunning visuals. The game was designed with the Xbox Series X and S in mind, and you will see this as soon as you load into the first level.
When it comes to the gameplay, you play the role of Cahal, someone who can switch between three different forms. Each form has advantages and disadvantages. You will make use of all of them throughout the story depending on the objective.
There is a lot of content for you to explore in the single-player campaign, but there is no option for multiplayer. That said, this is a game that you will almost certainly enjoy if you are looking for titles with unique combat mechanics.
Tetris Effect: Connected
Tetris may have been one of the first games to achieve mainstream popularity, but that does not mean that it has lost its allure all these decades later. Even now, you will find a lot of people who play it for hours and hours, hoping to perfect their skills whichever way they can.
When it comes to Tetris Effect: Connected, there are a lot of features that the developers have added to make the game a bit more fun. The biggest addition to the game is that of social features. Players can now join rooms with their friends and compete against each other.
Of course, there is also a visual update that makes Tetris look modern and robust. While we wouldn’t recommend that you play this game if you have played Tetris before and did not enjoy it, this is definitely one of the best versions for fans of Tetris to play.
The Forgotten City
The Forgotten City is the next game on our list of the most underrated games on Xbox Series X and S. This is a time-loop game set in a Roman city on the brink of destruction. It is up to you to figure out the reason behind the destruction of the city and prevent it.
After a set interval, the city is destroyed and you have to begin the game once again. However, your progress from the previous tries is carried over until you figure out how to save the city.
The Forgotten City is an entry that we regularly place in our lists of best Xbox games. It was initially a Skyrim mod that was so popular that the developers decided to make it a standalone game. Despite having been out for a long time, there are many players who will not have played the game. We strongly recommend that they do.
If you are a fan of the horror genre, The Medium is the game that you just have to try. You play the role of a medium. As such, you have access to special powers which you will use to discover what exactly is going on.
The story gives you very little to go on at the beginning, and things only get more ambiguous as you move toward the end. However, the ending does resolve everything in a nice and tidy manner.
You can control both your real self and the medium, meaning that it is possible for you to traverse between two worlds and visit places where your actual self cannot go. The psychological horror elements in the game are at the forefront, and chances are that you will find yourself scared out of your wits throughout the game.
We are really surprised by how little attention Quantum Break has received. While there was a lot of hype surrounding the game when it was initially released on the Xbox One in 2016, it died down relatively quickly.
We are surprised by this because Quantum Break is a completely new take on what a video game could be. The creators of the game have tried to construct a hybrid between an action game and an action movie. This leads to an experience that is unlike anything else you have ever played. The only games that come close are those by Hideo Kojima with their exceptionally-long cutscenes.
The story revolves around two people that have developed certain powers after a catastrophic event. One of them tries to control and use the power to his advantage, while the other attempts to stop him. The story is rife with twists and turns, making the game ideal for those who want to try something completely new.
If you are looking for a game that combines RPG elements with platforming, Indivisible is the game for you. The game somehow manages to combine the best of both genres with a stunning art style.
The main reason to play Indivisible is its story. You play the role of Ajna, who suddenly develops mysterious powers when her home is attacked. The rest of the story is based around Ajna and her revenge, with you being responsible for developing Ajna and destroying her enemies.
The one problem that we have with Indivisible is that we did not find the combat to be anything extra special. As such, you may want to look for other games on the list if you are looking for a game with great fighting mechanics.
No Man’s Sky
No Man’s Sky was perhaps one of the most hyped games of all time. Once it was released, it quickly became the most hated. The number of negative reviews by both the press and the players was staggering. The developers could have written the game off and started all over again, but they didn’t!
Over time, the creators of the game have slowly patched all of the bugs, added new content, and delivered almost all of the promises that they had made before the game’s release. Now, No Man’s Sky is truly a game worth playing and has a lot of interesting activities for players to engage in.
From fighting other players across space to foraging different planets for resources, No Man’s Sky is basically a sandbox that allows you to do whatever you want. If you have not tried the game yet or tried it upon release and didn’t like it, now is the time to play the game.
A Plague Tale: Innocence
This is the next game on our list of the most underrated Xbox games. If you are looking for a game with an extremely sad story, A Plague Tale: Innocence is what you should play. The game follows the story of a mother and her son, with both of them on a quest to survive.
The two of them have to deal with the plague and the inquisition, and somehow try to make sure that the two survive it all. Your enemies are not only the inquisition soldiers and everyone related to them but also the army of rats that could cause the deadly disease that is almost certainly going to take your life if you get it.
With quite literally some of the saddest cutscenes we have ever seen in a game, A Plague Tale: Innocence is designed for a mature audience that has the capacity to grasp the direness of the situation. Will you be able to find hope amongst all of the suffering?
ARK: Survival Evolved
ARK: Survival Evolved is a fairly popular game on the PC, but it has not taken off on Xbox in the same way. That is a shame because this is a great survival game that does not suffer from the same shortcomings as many of its peers did upon release.
It is possible for you to tame and breed your own dinosaurs, and then use them for your survival. You will simultaneously have to fend off wild creatures and other players as you fight over precious resources.
As is the case with almost all survival games, ARK is best played with friends. While you can play it alone, it won’t be nearly as fun or as easy as it would be if you had a party. You will need to manage your hunger levels, inventory, and exposure to the dynamic ecosystem that is constantly changing and evolving. All of this makes for an incredibly fun experience that does not become stale no matter how long you play the game.
Vampyr is another one of those games that have fascinatingly dark storylines that place you in a moral dilemma. You play the role of a doctor that has recently been turned into a Vampyr in 1918-era London.
As a doctor, it is your duty to save the city as it suffers from the flu epidemic. As a Vampyr, you have a bloodlust for your fellow human beings, and you need to feed on them to survive. This means that the fate of the city is almost entirely up to you.
All of the characters in the city will react to the choices you make, and your character will struggle with the decisions that he has to make. What you end up doing is entirely up to you, but whether or not you can live with the consequences is not.
Ryse: Son of Rome
Ryse: Son of Rome is one of those games that did not receive enough attention when it was released simply due to the themes it explores. You are Marius Titus, and your family was recently killed. You will now embark upon a journey to avenge their deaths.
The campaign does not have an amazing story, and it primarily serves as a backdrop to all of the action. However, the combat mechanics in the game are something that the developers must be lauded for.
On top of that, you can enter the Colosseum in Gladiator mode and see just how long you can last. it is also possible for you to fight other players online, although it can sometimes be difficult to find matches due to the small number of players playing the game.
Subnautica: Below Zero
Subnautica: Below Zero is the last game on our list of the most underrated games for Xbox Series X / S. In Below Zero, you must try to ensure your survival on a distant planet. You also have to discover what happened to all of the scientists and other people that were inhabiting it but have suddenly disappeared.
This is a single-player game, which makes this game unique amongst other games in the genre that make the game much more difficult if you are alone. There isn’t a lot in terms of a story here, but you will need to think and carefully plan every move before you make it.
If you are a fan of survival games, then you will be surprised by just how unique of an experience Subnautica: Below Zero manages to provide compared to everything else.