Video games are a great way to relieve stress, have fun, learn, and relax. Depending on what we expect from our game, we should consider different genres and types.

Of course, individual preferences and tastes play a significant role here – but it’s undeniable that you’ll likely relieve stress faster by playing something relaxing. If you’re looking for a game perfect for an evening on the couch under a blanket, pleasant and cozy games offering enjoyable gameplay at a slower pace are your best bet.

Are you a typical console gamer and looking for cozy Xbox games to play alone or with your family? Today, we’ll introduce you to a few relaxing (and sometimes even cute) games which you can play with Xbox Game Pass!

What Makes a Game ‘Cozy’?

But what exactly are cozy games? Is it some new genre? Well… not exactly, because the genres of such games can be quite diverse. It’s more about specific features that these games have and how they affect the player.

Many cozy games are often also referred to as “casual games,” offering fairly simple, uncomplicated, and enjoyable gameplay, with the main goal of… appealing to everyone. These games have a very broad audience and are the opposite of hardcore games, which are geared towards a niche audience of enthusiasts due to their themes and challenging, complex gameplay.

What makes a game ‘cozy’? Certainly, a calm, relaxing gameplay at a leisurely pace, lack of overly demanding skill requirements for players, visually pleasing graphics and atmosphere where you can simply… switch off your brain and relax. Such games bring many benefits – mainly for mental health. They help reduce stress, anxiety, and assist in depressive states. By providing a relaxing and comforting environment, games of this type can help players unwind and de-stress after a long day.

GameReleaseGenreDeveloperTrailer
House Flipper 2 2023-12-14 Simulation Empyrean
Minecraft 2011-11-18 Action Mojang Studios
Stardew Valley 2016-02-26 Adventure ConcernedApe
Unpacking 2021-11-02 Puzzle Witch Beam
Spirittea 2023-11-13 Indie Cheesemaster Games
Spiritfarer | Farewell Edition 2020-08-18 Adventure Thunder Lotus
Slime Rancher & Slime Rancher 2 Bundle 2023-09-14 Adventure Monomi Games
Tales of the Shire TBA Indie DotEmu
The Sims 4 2015-04-02 Simulator Maxis
Cozy Grove 2021-04-07 Indie Spry Fox LLC

House Flipper

Release date:2018-05-17
Genre:Simulation
Developer:Empyrean

Do you love building and decorating? If so, you’ll definitely enjoy House Flipper (which has recently also received a sequel), a game where you play as a property investor-builder.

The gameplay involves buying old, rundown houses, making necessary repairs, furnishing them, and then selling them. Although renovation in reality can be a bit tiring, House Flipper offers pure satisfaction. Is there anything more enjoyable than fixing up an old property and turning it into a cozy space?

Key features
  • Building, renovating, and decorating
  • Old houses hiding various surprises
  • Satisfying gameplay

Minecraft

Release date:2011-11-18
Genre:Indie
Developer:Mojang Studios

Is there anyone who doesn’t know Minecraft? This game, created 13 years ago, now offers players dozens of add-ons, hundreds of mods, and literally… thousands of hours of entertainment.

This title defies strict genre classifications, as it combines elements of a simulator, adventure, builder, survival, crafting, and exploration. We can do literally anything in it – explore a huge, open world, fight enemies, build and decorate houses, raise animals, grow plants… What we create and how we play Minecraft depends entirely on us, and the gameplay is exceptionally enjoyable!

Key features
  • Available on multiple devices
  • Huge gameplay freedom
  • Fun for both adults and kids

Stardew Valley

Release date:2016-02-26
Genre:Adventure
Developer:ConcernedApe

This outstanding indie game is another example of a title that’s difficult to classify into one genre. Stardew Valley is a blend of RPG, farm simulator, and adventure. The game was originally produced for PC, but its excellent reviews and player interest led to its expansion to other platforms.

In this game, you play as a corporate worker, tired of his current career, who one day finds out he inherited a small farm. You move there, and your goal is to restore the place to its former glory and further develop it. The title is incredibly enjoyable, the gameplay is relatively simple, and the picturesque, pixelated world is utterly absorbing!

Key features
  • Pleasant and beautiful pixel art graphics in an old-school style
  • Plenty of nostalgic references and Easter eggs
  • Gameplay that combines the best elements of RPGs, simulators, and adventures

Unpacking

Release date:2021-11-02
Genre:
Developer:Witch Beam

This is a very calm, relaxing title that combines artistic, puzzle, and simulation gameplay, making it perfect for those who find pleasure in arranging and organizing things.

In this title, you participate in a series of moves, and your task is to… unpack boxes and arrange items on shelves, cabinets, and in drawers. You can arrange them freely, move them around, and organize them according to your own ideas and tastes. The game pays great attention to detail – you can even arrange individual books or attach magnets to the refrigerator!

Key features
  • A game that defines cozy gaming
  • Uncomplicated gameplay focused on unpacking items and arranging them in a new location after moving
  • Pleasant graphics and great attention to detail

Spirittea

Release date:2023-11-13
Genre:Indie
Developer:Cheesemaster Games

This title is very similar to the previously mentioned Stardew Valley – the creators were inspired by both that game and the beloved by Nintendo fans Animal Crossing and Harvest Moon, as well as… cult anime films from Studio Ghibli. This game also offers a top-down view and cozy pixel art graphics.

In the game, you play as a writer who arrives in a village with beautiful, Japanese-inspired architecture. However, this town is inhabited by ghosts straight out of fairy tales and legends. Your task is to appease the spirits who are causing trouble for the villagers.

Key features
  • Pleasant pixel art graphics with a top-down view
  • Atmosphere reminiscent of Japanese fairy tales and legends
  • Uncomplicated gameplay reminiscent of Stardew Valley and other similar games

Spiritfarer

Release date:2020-08-18
Genre:Adventure
Developer:Thunder Lotus

This is an interesting game, a hybrid of adventure, strategy, and platformer, with elements of crafting, rhythm game, and skill game. It features a calm pace, a nostalgic atmosphere, and beautiful, hand-drawn 2D graphics.

In the game, you play as Stella, who is the titular spirit farer, akin to Charon from Greek legends, who transports souls across the river to the world of the dead. During the journey, she has to perform various side tasks and also learn about the past of her passengers.

Key features
  • Beautiful, hand-painted graphical design
  • Combination of multiple genres
  • Moving stories

Slime Rancher

Release date:2017-08-01
Genre:Adventure
Developer:Monomi Games

This is an interesting title, and also a combination of several genres, including economic strategy, action, and adventure. It’s a sandbox title with an open world that’s full of cute, sweet, jelly-like creatures.

Here, you play as Beatrix LeBeau, a young farmer who sets out to a distant planet, inhabited by slimy creatures, searching for fortune. The girl plans to open a large ranch where she will breed these jelly creatures. But before she can fulfil this task, she must face various dangers.

Key features
  • Colourful, visually pleasing graphics
  • A world inhabited by adorable, jelly-like creatures
  • Gameplay based on catching animals, breeding them, and exploring the colourful world

The Sims 4

Release date:2014-09-02
Genre:Simulator
Developer:Maxis

Reading our ranking, you’ve probably been wondering, “What about The Sims?” – well, here they are, because we couldn’t mention cozy games without talking about this title. The Sims 4 is the fourth full installment of the most popular life simulation game, which hardly needs any introduction!

Create your characters and families from scratch, build and furnish houses, take care of your Sims’ needs, help them fulfill their needs and aspirations, and also… discover the secrets that the creators have prepared in this installment! The Sims 4 is an absolute hit and a game that cannot be overlooked in the overview of cozy Xbox games.

Key features
  • Another installment of the most popular life sim
  • Gameplay enriched with moods that affect Sims’ behavior
  • Freedom of play – you can play ready-made scenarios, create your own stories from scratch, or simply… build and furnish!

Tales of the Shire

Release date:TBD
Genre:Indie
Developer:Weta Workshop

And now something for all those who, while reading books or watching movies from the Lord of the Rings series, have always wondered what it would be like to be a Hobbit and live in the beautiful, green Shire. In 2024 (we don’t know the exact date), Tales of the Shire will premiere – a pleasant, cozy game that will allow us to experience Hobbit life!

In this game, you play – of course – as a Hobbit created by yourself, who will have to arrange and take care of his cottage and garden, cook, clean, make friends, and eat second breakfasts. The game also offers us the opportunity to explore the fabulous Shire. If this won’t be the coziest game ever, we don’t know what could be!

Key features
  • A game that allows you to fulfil your dream of being a Hobbit and living in the Shire
  • Pleasant gameplay, reminiscent of that in Stardew Valley or Animal Crossing
  • The game was developed by the team that formerly worked on special effects in the LOTR movies!

Cozy Grove

Release date:2021-04-07
Genre:Indie
Developer:Spry Fox LLC

Just the title alone indicates that this is one of those cozy games that will allow you to relax after a hard day. It’s another production on the border of several genres, where adventure elements mix with simulation and exploration.

Here, you play as a Spirit Scout who camps on a mysterious island inhabited by ghosts. Your tasks involve helping various spirits and creatures, solving their problems, and exploring the island. The game is characterized by super charming, sweet graphics that will melt every heart!

Key features
  • Super charming, hand-drawn graphics
  • Very enjoyable, relaxing gameplay
  • Elements of exploration, crafting, and life sim

Conclusion

Can you imagine anything more enjoyable than a game that transports you to a fairy-tale, safe, and beautiful world and allows you to enjoy simple activities? That’s why our ranking of the coziest games ever available with Xbox Game Pass was created.

We selected the most adorable, friendly, uncomplicated, casual cozy games that will undoubtedly improve your mood, help you relax, and forget about your problems. What’s more, most of them are available on our marketplace at attractive prices!