The previous generation of Microsoft consoles has certainly delivered a bunch of exciting games. From continuations of classic Xbox series like Halo and Gears of War to brand new IPs, Xbox One exclusives were some of the best titles released during the last seven years.

Now that the Xbox Series X/S games are taking the world by storm, it would be the best time to take a look at what games the users of XONE can still play while waiting to get their hands on the newest console from the Redmond giant. In our list, we will present some of the best Xbox One exclusive games. Well, not exactly –  some of those titles were also released on other consoles and PCs. But their popularity on Xbox One makes them worth mentioning here.

Without further ado, let’s take a look at the best Xbox One games for the year 2021.

Best Xbox One Exclusive Games
GameGenreRelease
Quantum Break (Xbox One) Action-Adventure, Third-Person Shooter Apr 5, 2016 Read more
Sunset Overdrive (Xbox One) Action-adventure, TPS Oct 28, 2014 Read more
Ori and the Will of the Wisps (XBOX ONE / Windows 10) Metroidvania, platform-adventure Mar 11, 2020 Read more
Halo 5: Guardians (Xbox One) FPS Oct 27, 2015 Read more
Forza Horizon 4 Standard Edition (Xbox Live) Racing Sep 28, 2018 Read more
Forza Horizon 4 Deluxe Edition (Xbox Live, Windows 10) (US) Racing Sep 28, 2018 Read more
Forza Horizon 4 Ultimate Edition (Xbox Live, Windows 10) (US) Racing, Simulator Sep 28, 2018 Read more
Gears 5 Xbox One / Windows 10 (Xbox Live) Third-person shooter Sep 10, 2019 Read more
Halo Wars 2 (Xbox One, Windows 10) Real-time strategy Feb 21, 2017 Read more
Crackdown 3 (Xbox One, Windows 10) Action-adventure 2019-02-15 Read more
Rare Replay (Xbox One) Compilation Aug 4, 2015 Read more

Quantum Break

Xbox One
Release year:5 April 2016
Genre:action-adventure, first-person shooter
DeveloperQuantic Dream
Modes:single-player

Quantic Dream delivers yet another innovative title, further blurring the line between a movie and gameplay experience. Quantum Break takes the player into a not-too-distant future, where time travel has become possible. Jack Joyce and Paul Serene’s misuse of the time machine’s power causes a fracture in a time-space continuum. In order to fix it, Jack will have to travel between timelines and stop Paul, who, driven to insanity by the fracture, believes that the end of time is inevitable.

Quantum Break is the first game from QD to move away from strictly interactive drama mechanics in favor of a classic action-adventure game. The player will still experience a massive story filled with difficult choices, only this time it is told in live-action cutscenes (starring popular actors Shawn Ashmore and Aiden Gillen, among others). The gameplay features of Quantum Break also include various time powers that the protagonist Jack can use, including freezing enemies in time, dashing in for a quick melee takedown, or creating a protective shield. Throughout the game, the player will also use time powers to solve puzzles and collect various items.

Quantum Break was met with positive critical reception, praised for its ambitious use of live-action cutscenes and overall gameplay mechanics.

Key features
  • Fix the tear in the time-space continuum and stop the end of the world
  • Use your powers of temporal manipulation to solve puzzles and fight enemies
  • Experience a plot told from shifting points of view
  • Make pivotal choices that will shape the outcome of the story

Sunset Overdrive

Xbox One
Release year:28 October 2014
Genre:action-adventure, third-person shooter
DeveloperInsomniac Games
Modessingle-player, multiplayer

Insomniac Games, creators of the Ratchet & Clank series, bring you Sunset Overdrive – a unique combination of titles like Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater and Prince of Persia. The game is set in Sunset City, a dystopian where a greedy megacorp feeds its customers with a mutagenic energy drink, causing them to turn into monsters. The player takes the role of a FizzCo employee who escapes being turned into a mindless mutant. Together with other survivors, they decide to save Sunset City from being overrun by the victims of the OverCharge drink.

sunset-overdrive-gamescreen

Sunset Overdrive features various mechanics that fans of non-stop action will definitely enjoy. Most notably, the game rewards the player for stylish, high-speed disposal of enemies. The player can use grind rails, wall runs, parkour moves in combination with weapons like assault rifles and grenade launchers to defeat the hordes of mutants gaining points for style and speed. The game encourages the player to keep moving, as staying too long on the ground will get them overwhelmed by zombies in no time. Sunset Overdrive features a co-op multiplayer, in which up to 8 players complete various missions.

The critics praised sunset Overdrive for its humoristic tone and frenetic action gameplay.

Key features
  • Explore Sunset City and face the hordes of juiced-up mutants
  • Fight against the hordes of enemies using your agility and speed against them
  • Rack up points for quick and flashy moves.
  • Team up with players online to defend your position from the enemy.

Ori and the Will of the Wisps

Xbox One
Release year:11 March 2020
Genre:platform-adventure, Metroidvania
DeveloperMoon Studios
Modessingle-player

Ori and the Blind Forest was one of the biggest gaming surprises of 2015. Built on a solid and demanding gameplay foundation and supported by a moving story of dealing with loss and grief, the game captured the imaginations of the players and the attention of the critics. Five years later, Moon Studios return to the Nibel Forest, where Ori and his friends had just managed to save the Spirit Tree and prevent a disaster. As Ori tends to Ku, a hatchling owl, the pair becomes separated. Ori follows Ku’s trail, leading him into the forest of Niwen, a place even more dangerous than Ori’s home of Nibel.

Ori and the Will of the Wisps - game screen

Ori and the Will of the Wisps doesn’t change much in the gameplay mechanics of its predecessor. The game still focuses on platforming and exploration of the 2-D levels, unlocking new powers to open new paths, and fighting occasional enemies, Metroidvania-style. New mechanics change the way the game saves – “soul links” are replaced by more traditional autosaves – and the way the player acquires new skills through finding Shards located throughout the game. Will of the Wisps introduced a mode called Spirit Trials, which tests the players’ skill through a timed race to the finish.

Ori and the Will of the Wisps was met with an overwhelmingly positive reception, with the critics once again praising the touching story and entertaining gameplay.

Key features
  • Return to the first of Nibel for a brand new adventure
  • Explore the new area – the Niwen Forest – to find a lost friend
  • Enjoy the classic gameplay mechanics inspired by Metroidvania games
  • Test yourself against other players in the Spirit Trials mode

Halo 5: Guardians

Xbox One
Release year:27 October 2015
Genre:first-person shooter
Developer343 Industries
Modessingle-player, multiplayer

Halo 5: Guardians is the fifth core installment of the Halo series, featuring the character of Master Chief Petty Officer John-117. In Guardians, Master Chief is the leader of the fireteam Blue, leading an expedition to a derelict space station, the Argent Moon. As the station is attacked by the Jul’Mdama, a splinter faction of the Alien Covenant, Master Chief receives a message from Cortana, his A.I. companion, presumed to be dead after the events of Halo 4. Disobeying a direct order to return, Master Chief and the Blue Team embark on a mission of their own to locate Cortana.

halo-5-guardians-gamescreen

Halo 5: Guardians doesn’t reinvent the wheel when it comes to gameplay mechanics. The fans of the previous installment of the series will find here all the classic features – fast-paced FPS action, vehicular combat, etc. One of the few new mechanics are the Spartan Abilities, replacing the Armor Abilities from the previous titles. The player can use these special skills in various, context-dependent situations to perform offensive, defensive or evasive maneuvers. The multiplayer component of Halo 5 now lacks the local mode, but the online multiplayer provides enough thrills to make up for it.

Halo 5: Guardians was positively reviewed, with the critics praising the game’s graphics and return to the roots of these series gameplay mechanics.

Key features
  • Experience the new chapter in the Halo saga
  • Explore new planets and face new enemies
  • Use your Spartan Abilities to turn the tide of the encounter
  • Join an online lobby for an intense multiplayer experience

Forza Horizon 4

Xbox One
Release year:2 October 2018
Genre:Racing
DeveloperPlayground Games
Modessingle-player, multiplayer

Forza Horizon 4 takes the player to the most charming locations in Great Britain for another round of thrilling races. The game allows the player to sit behind the wheel of over 700 cars, representing brands such as Ford, Lamborghini, Ferrari, Bugatti, and others.

Forza Horizon 4 - car

The game is set in an open-world map, which features changing weather conditions and different seasons. This opens new possibilities for the player; for example, in winter, the player can drive on a frozen lake. Throughout the game, the player will be able to win various random rewards through Wheelspins for completing different challenges. Wheelspins unlock cars, in-game currency, player avatar clothing, etc.

Forza Horizon 4 was met with a positive critical reception. The reviews praised the graphics of the game and its open-world map, as well as the active weather mechanics, which was considered an important new feature that made the gameplay much more interesting.

Key features
  • Drive the best cars in the world in the most beautiful areas of Northern Britain
  • Experience how the changing weather conditions and seasons influence the map of the world
  • Complete races to unlock new rewards
  • Play against other online drivers in the multiplayer mode

Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020

Xbox One
Release year:TBA 2021 (?)
Genre:flight simulation
DeveloperAsobo Studio
Modessingle-player, multiplayer

While the newest installment of Asobos Studio’s flight sim has not yet been released on Xbox One, the players on computers and Xbox Series X/S consoles have already had the chance to play it. And if their experience with the game is any indicator, then the owners of the last-gen Xbox consoles are in for a real treat.

Microsoft Flight Simulator X

Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 is under many aspects a unique title in its category. The game uses a realistic map of the world, modeled after Bing Maps, to present the locations the layer will visit in stunning detail. Moreover, the developers have rendered 40 real-life airports (the number of locations depends on the version of the game in the player’s possession). The core gameplay mechanics are similar to those in the previous installment, giving the player the freedom to control various types of aircraft in different conditions, participating in a variety of activities.

Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 is planned for Xbox One release sometime in 2021. The PC and Xbox Series X/S versions of the game were met with a very positive critical and player reception.

Key features
  • Over two dozen civilization as of the Age of Empires II HD Edition
  • Unique units and Wonders for each nation
  • A solid old school real-time strategy
  • Five campaigns in the base game alone

Gears 5

Xbox One
Release year:10 September 2019
Genre:third-person shooter
DeveloperThe Coalition
Modessingle-player, multiplayer

Gears 5 is the sixth installment of one of the quintessential Xbox series developed by Epic Games, handed over to The Coalition. Gears 5 gives the player a chance to once again fight for the freedom of the world against the alien race of the Locust. This time the story focuses on Kait Diaz, a descendant of the Locust Queen Myrrah, who embarks on a mission to find out about the origins of her race.

Gears 5 (2019)

Gears 5 features all the mechanics that the fans of the series have grown used to, starting with fast-paced TPS action. The change of protagonist hasn’t dulled the series penchant for brutality – the player will have a chance to shoot, impale and drill through the hordes of opponents using an arsenal of creative firearms. Gears 5 introduced several new weapons, including a souped-up minigun, a stationary railgun, and Hammer of Dawn beacon, which allowed targeting several targets with the orbital cannon. The game introduces new multiplayer modes, including a three-person online and local co-op, with various new match types.

Gears 5 was met with positive critical reception.

Key features
  • Return to the world of Gears of War and take on the Locust Horde one more time
  • Play as Kait Diaz and discover her connection to the Locust race
  • Use an arsenal of deadly weapons, including brand new tools of destruction
  • Enter the game with friends in three-person co-op multiplayer

Halo Wars 2

Xbox One
Release year:21 February 2017
Genre:real-time strategy
Developer343 Industries, Creative Assembly
Modessingle-player, multiplayer

Halo Wars 2 is the sequel to the real-time strategy set in the world of Halo, developed by 343 Industries and Creative Assembly. The story of Halo Wars 2 takes place nearly three decades after the vents of the original game.

The war with the Covenant has ended, and the crew of the Spirit of Fire is thought to be lost in space. The ship crashes on the Ark, an installation capable of creating Halos, currently under the control of the Banished faction, led by general Atriox. Unwilling to let the Covenant gain control of the Ark, the Spirit of Fire crew declares battle to the Banished.

Halo Wars 2’s mechanics aren’t significantly different from those in the original game. The player controls the units on the map, exploring areas surrounding their bass of operation in search of resources and encountering enemy units. The combat in HW 2 occurs in a rock-paper-scissors fashion, with certain unit types having an advantage over others. While in the campaign mode, the only playable faction are the UNSC; in multiplayer modes, the player can also control the Banished, who possess their own unique units. Halo Wars 2 received positive reviews and was praised for its gameplay mechanics and for being accessible to the newcomers in the RTS genre.

Key features
  • Defend the Ark from the Covenant forces
  • Explore the surroundings in search of resources to expand your base of operations
  • Engage the enemy units in a “rock-paper-scissors” combat system
  • Enter the multiplayer mode and fight against players online

Crackdown 3

Xbox One
Release year:15 February 2015
Genre:action-adventure
DeveloperSumo Digital
Modessingle-player, multiplayer

The original Crackdown was one of the first big games released on Xbox 360. It featured action-packed open-world gameplay, in which the player could feel like a superhero, jumping from building to building and fighting enemies. The third installment of the series takes place in the city of New Providence. The player is tasked with taking down the branches of TerraNova, controlling different parts of the city.

Crackdown 3 Xbox One 2019

The gameplay features of Crackdown 3 remain mostly unchanged, so the players who had enjoyed the previous installments of the series will feel right at home with this one. The player can explore the open-world environment of New Providence, completing missions against the head honchos of TerraNova. The game rewards the mayhem the player causes along the way with orbs, which can be spent on upgrading various skills – combat, agility, driving, etc. The game features a multiplayer mode, in which players can work together in clearing the campaign or enjoy the free-roaming possibilities in the Keys to the City mode.

Crackdown 3 was met with solid critical reception, who noted that while it doesn’t introduce any significant changes to the series, the game still delivers on the entertainment factor.

Key features
  • Welcome to New Providence – time to take down an evil corporation!
  • Experience the classic Crackdown gameplay, blending free-roam exploration and combat
  • Collect orbs and increase your skills to take on bigger challenges
  • Team up with other players in a co-op multiplayer mode bring down TerraNova together

Rare Replay

Xbox One
Release year:4 August 2015
Genre:compilation
DeveloperRare
Modessingle-player, multiplayer

Rare Replay is not a game. Well, not a single game, anyway. It’s a compilation of the best games released throughout the 30 years of the developer’s presence on the market. If you’re a fan of retro gaming, then this title is just for you!

rare-replay-gamescreen

The compilation includes many of the games the fans of Rare are familiar with, emulated to play on the new generation consoles. These include the likes of Conker’s Bad Fur Day, Banjo-Kazooie, Perfect Dark, and other classics from Rare’s vault. The games emulated from older devices, such as N64 or ZX Spectrum, retain various features of these machines making Rare Replay a real blast from the past for the gaming veterans and for younger players – an interesting look at how things used to be.

Rare Replay was received well by the critics, who praised the effort put by Rare into packaging their best games into one compilation but lamented the absence of various classic games like Donkey Kong and Goldeneye 007

Key features
  • Experience the blast from the past in the form of the classic Rare titles
  • Enjoy such classic titles as Conker’s Bad Fur Day and Banjo-Kazooie
  • Relive your childhood thanks to the effects of emulated consoles included in the compilation

Halo Infinite

Xbox One
Release year:TBA 2021
Genre:first-person shooter
Developer343 Industries
Modessingle-player, multiplayer

While the latest, yet-to-be-released installment of the Halo series is marketed as the Xbox Series X/S title, the owners of the older generation of Xbox consoles needn’t worry.  Halo Infinite is primed to be one of the most expansive titles in the series’ history, and it would be unthinkable to exclude Xbox One players from experiencing it.

Halo Infinite (Halo 6)

As of writing this article, not much is known about the contents of Halo Infinite. The gameplay trailer released in July of 2020 presented the setting of the game – the mysterious Installation 07, known as Zeta Halo. From the information released by the developers, we also find out that the Banished – the antagonist of Halo Wars 2 – will return in Halo Infinite as Master Chief’s adversaries. Whatever 343 Industries have prepared for us, one thing is certain – Halo Infinite will be one of the hottest premieres on Xbox One.

Key features
  • Explore Installation 07 and face the Banished, trying to use its power for their own gain
  • Experience the classic Halo gameplay in never-before-seen quality
  • Play as Master Chief in his most personal battle yet

Xbox One (hundred games to enjoy)

Well, there you have it, guys – 10 exclusive Xbox one games that you definitely should play, if you own Xbox one, that is. Our list covers various titles and genres – from action-adventure, through FPSs, to real-time strategies. Each of these games has something unique to offer, be that enthralling story, exciting gameplay, or stunning graphics. We hope that our list gave you an idea of what sort of games Xbox One has to offer and that you’ll be able to spend pleasant hours playing them.