It can feel tougher to find satisfying new single-player games these days, particularly on an Xbox. PlayStation games seem to have a true hold on the classic single player experience. But there are still more than a few standouts on Xbox that you might have overlooked this year.
They may not involve Xbox exclusivity, but they’re still highly refreshing. Most games thrive on multiplayer now, either co-op or competitive gameplay. So, this list will include indies and AAA games alike that do not rely on multiplayer. Here’s our selection of the best single-player Xbox games from 2023, across a wide range of budgets and genres.
10. Star Wars Jedi: Survivor
The anticipated continuation of Cal’s adventure has suffered a lot of mixed reception. The devs expanded on the most niche features of Fallen Order. This will please the fans, but certainly won’t win over skeptics. There are also some justifiable concerns over technical issues and some controls.
However, the storytelling and characterization will amount to a very rewarding Star Wars experience for most. It’s easy to invest in Survivor’s new worlds, lore, and personal struggles. They are suitably creative and a natural fit with the rest of the Star Wars galaxy. You can happily become absorbed in Cal’s tale, which also doesn’t feel like it would benefit from any kind of multiplayer.
9. Assassin’s Creed Mirage
This franchise has provided many excellent single-player games for Xbox. It has also been consistently successful, though increasingly divisive among longtime fans. Odyssey and Valhalla are terrific games, but don’t really fit the mold of the series.
Mirage refocuses onto stealth and parkour, and thankfully trims a lot of the bloat that encumbered recent installments. Mirage may have some counterintuitive combat, but it’s still a gorgeous and nostalgic experience. The setting really lives and breathes, and it’s definitely worth exploring on your own.
8. Blasphemous 2
This is an incredible sequel from returning developer The Game Kitchen, with more extraordinary mythology and combat. While it may not revolutionize the metroidvania genre, it’s certainly a shining example of it.
This adventure is just as stark and ruthless as its predecessor, equally rewarding and punishing. The imagery hasn’t lost its signature creative grit, with haunting strangeness throughout. The enemies are inventive and fun to battle, built to complement your new abilities. Blasphemous 2 is a single-player game that’s perfectly suited for any console, including Xbox.
This is an excellent game for Xbox fans who want a tamer single-player experience. It’s built from the ground up for cozy gameplay. Sea of Stars features terrific retro visuals and ideas, which don’t lose their appeal while accompanied by modern sensibilities.
The gameplay offers many of the freedoms that fans likely wished for while growing up with Sea of Stars’ influences. The game has a deeply interactive world, intuitive controls, and fun turn-based action. It’s also earned a lot of praise for its refined pixel art and breadth of content.
6. Lies of P
Some players might have drifted by this surprise hit simply because of its odd premise. But it uses the Pinocchio foundation to explore very compelling themes with sincerity. Your genuine investment in the protagonist will add unexpected weight to every existential choice. It’s a single-player game by design, and an all-time Xbox highlight.
It also happens to be a masterclass in Soulslike mechanics. It’s clearly an amalgamation of many games, but it also learns from them and expands. Lies of P doesn’t only justify itself, it excels in its own right. The combat and style are impressively clean, and weirdly accessible for the genre. But it’s no less forgiving than the toughest FromSoftware gameplay.
5. Armored Core VI Fires of Rubicon
After a grueling absence, Armored Core fans were finally able to rejoice. Fires of Rubicon isn’t just a return to form, but a culmination of all that FromSoftware has mustered before. The purity and ingenuity of its mecha combat is a resounding success.
This is undoubtedly a high bar for both the series and its genre. The sheer spectacle of its action would be enough, with gorgeous visuals and memorable enemies. But Armored Core VI also offers immersive controls that are just plain fun to master. This single-player game is a must-have title for Xbox fans.
This is an extraordinary blend of underground style and blockbuster action. It features both rhythm gameplay and hack-and-slash combat, without compromising either. In fact, the two are seamless, and there’s an epic soundtrack for every kind of player to enjoy.
The world is colorful and full of explosive energy, which is more rewarding to discover on your own. The gameplay is akin to assembling the perfect playlist and then shutting out the world with it. Xbox fans who love games with charisma should definitely try out this single-player hit, surprisingly published by Bethesda Softworks.
3. Bomb Rush Cyberfunk
There is no replacement for the Jet Set Radio series, which possibly has the most style in gaming history. Its comprehension of underground culture through music, graffiti, and sports is still astonishing. However, Bomb Rush Cyberfunk is a remarkable love letter to that series. It borrows a lot, but also carves out its own personality into the existing groundwork.
The elaboration on tricks is so much fun that you genuinely don’t need other players around. You will be content to learn and explore the game’s frenetic world. There are many interesting characters and a catchy modern soundtrack.
Jeppe Carlsen has done it again. Their latest puzzle adventure lives up to the standards set by Limbo and Inside. However, fans of Carlsen’s preceding work should not expect mere imitation. Cocoon offers the same kind of dazzling innovation, both reinventing core ideas in the genre and successfully celebrating it.
The world is also well-defined, with clear and interesting rules that open up surprising new puzzle opportunities. It’s also equally atmospheric, as every single frame is brimming with details that reward you for paying attention. Cocoon is a thoroughly clever game with themes designed for a single-player experience, and it runs well on Xbox.
1. Alan Wake 2
Alan Wake always operated within a class and style of its own. You will be hard-pressed to discover similar games that offer the same blend of genres, let alone with equal quality. That’s surprising for a game that launched so many years ago. So, it’s a relief that the sequel has met and surpassed all expectations, among the majority of fans.
Alan Wake 2 only just launched last week, but it’s an instant hit with all the necessary ingredients. The story is just as bold, unexpected, and moody as fans could possibly hope for. It does not rely on fan service. It sparingly makes important connections, and like everything else, it serves the story. This is a single-player game that isn’t just great for Xbox, but the entire industry.
It may require some searching, but there are still many fun single-player games to explore on Xbox. So, it’s helpful to compile meaningful titles that players can begin with. Tell us what other single-player games from this year should join the list, or your favorite of all time!