Absolute Xbox GOTY Awards: Game Pass Category

Game Pass (or is it GamePass?) is the Xbox success story of 2018, so much so that it deserves a category and an accolade all of its own. And in true me fashion, I’m going to remind you that I called it in August, saying, and I quote “Game Pass is only going to get bigger and better”. Both people who read my original piece, which you can find right here!, were sceptical, but I think history will judge me as an Xbox Prophet (note to self: check if gamertag Xbox Prophet is available….).

All kidding aside, from humble beginnings, Game Pass seems to have won over a huge swathe of the Xbox population. The addition of exclusive first party titles and a burgeoning catalogue, plus some pretty competitive pricing has won over many of the naysayers.  And, at time of writing in December 2018, the additions are just insane. PES 2019, Ashen, Below, Mortal Kombat X – my backlog is shameful, and I love it.

So, while Game Pass itself deserves heaps of praise, we decided to deliberate on one aspect – what was the best addition to the catalogue in 2018? Bear in mind that we thrashed this out before December’s additions, so the likes of Below and Ashen weren’t part of the conversation, but we still had an embarrassment of riches to choose from.

State of Decay 2, Strange Brigade, Ryse: Son of Rome, The Division, The Fable Series, PUBG, Quantum Break – honestly, skim through the catalogue and you’ll find some absolute gems.

Shockingly, the titles I’ve listed above didn’t get a look in (really, they’re just some of my favourites). Conversation centred on three titans: Halo: MCC, Forza 4 and Sea of Thieves. Worthy additions to any backlog of shame, and passionately argued for by various members of the team.

One argued for Sea of Thieves on the basis that “after in initially Spartan amount of content, it’s got better and better over time”. True dat, and a gentle reminder to those of you who gave it a ‘meh’ at launch that Sea of Thieves is well worth a second look.

Another made the insightful point that the rational choice was Halo: MCC as it is “a phenomenal collection of games….but also a history lesson that charts the evolution of the Xbox console”. I hadn’t considered that before then, but it’s a fair point – three generations of Xbox gaming in one Master Chief sized wrapper!

And finally, the arguments for the fantastic Forza 4 – “one of the highest rated games on Xbox One and having Microsoft put their first party titles into Game Pass is a great move”. Again, true dat.

But, there can be only one winner. Or can there? Since Game Pass offers more titles that you can shake a stick at, an overwhelming amount of choice and variety, and, well, since we had a three way voting lock – Absolute Xbox Game Pass GOTY 2018 is a three way tie!

There was no separating the solid cases made for Forza 4, Sea of Thieves and Halo: MCC, so we’re calling it a Triple Crown win for all three amazing titles! We just couldn’t separate them, and why should we? They’re all awesome!

All three are available on Game Pass right now, and don’t forget that you can get a six month sub for half price until early January. It’s the best deal in gaming, and an essential purchase for any new Xbox owner (as well as us veterans). There’s more to come in December including the likes of Hellblade, and Crackdown 3 in February; there has literally never been a better time to jump in!

 

Just don’t expect to get anything done over the holidays. Well, anything except unlocking achievements for saving the galaxy, speeding in Edinburgh and singing sea shanties…….

 

 

 

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