Xbox Exclusive Games Coming to Other Platforms

edited March 13 in Gaming

It used to be that many gamers had to find ways to play Xbox games without an Xbox Series X or Xbox Series S. Now, owners of rival consoles can look forward to a small group of formerly Xbox-exclusive titles that will be available on the Nintendo Switch and Sony PlayStation consoles this spring. The move is part of Microsoft's plan to grow its franchises by leveraging what other platforms are offering, according to Microsoft Gaming head Phil Spencer on a special edition of the Official Xbox Podcast

Playing on PC 

It's worth noting that these legacy titles have been available on PC for a year at least. Players with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate memberships could, and still can, experience Xbox cloud gaming and play many Xbox games on their computers and supported mobile gadgets.  

A good number of gamers, including Henry Cavill, prefer playing on the PC rather than on consoles and with powerful hardware on the market, it isn't hard to see why. The Acer Predator Triton 500 SE and the Acer Nitro 16 gaming laptops, for example, have 16-inch screens and the horsepower required for an enjoyable playing experience. 

Let's take a quick look at the Xbox games making their way to other consoles. 


Released on February 22, 2024, on Switch and PS4/5 

Crafted by Obsidian Entertainment, Pentiment is a historical whodunit that features eye-catching graphics reminiscent of hand-drawn art from centuries ago. This makes sense since the game is literally presented as a manuscript from the Renaissance, and players will see the manuscript's pages flipping as they move between scenes. The visuals are also inspired by early prints and woodcuts, while the music, composed and performed by Alkemie Early Music Ensemble, is likewise historically influenced. 

Set in the Bavarian Alps in the 16th century, the story focuses on artist Andreas Maler, who also serves as an illuminator at Kiersau Abbey, where a benefactor is murdered. Andreas makes it his mission to exonerate his friend, who is accused of the crime. There isn't much in the way of action-packed adventures. Instead, Andreas travels back and forth across a small number of locations to interact with objects and talk with other characters; these conversations can affect how a character acts later in the game. 

Since its release in 2022, Pentiment has garnered multiple accolades, including nominations in the 19th British Academy Games Awards and the 2023 Golden Joystick Awards. It won in the Best Narrative category in the 23rd Annual Game Developers Choice Awards, while also being named Outstanding Original Adventure Game at the National Academy of Video Game Trade Reviewers 2022. 

Hi-Fi Rush 

For release on March 9, 2024, on PS5 

Created by Tango Gameworks and published by Bethesda Softworks, Hi-Fi Rush received high praise from critics for its vivid art style and creative animation. Released in 2023, it stands out as an energetic action game with all the fun of a cartoon. The game revolves around rock star wannabe Chai, who can see and feel his music in his surroundings after a surgical accident leaves an iPod implanted in his chest. Rhythm rules the game, from timing-based combo strategies to minigames having players follow cues to press buttons in rhythmic patterns. The music pays homage to alt-rock and modern garage, and besides original tunes, Hi-Fi Rush features licensed tracks by Nine Inch Nails and The Black Keys.  

Inspired by the 2004 movie Shaun of the Dead and other Edgar Wright Films, Hi-Fi Rush offers an engaging cast of characters, witty dialogue, exciting gameplay, and villains with charisma. It was nominated in several categories at the 24th Game Developers Choice Awards and won for Best Audio Design at the 2023 Game Awards. It also received the Tin Pan Alley Award for Best Music in a Game at the 2024 New York Game Awards. 


For release on April 16, 2024, on Switch and PS4/5 

Featuring insect-sized characters roaming in the backyard, Grounded is reminiscent of the late 1980s movie Honey, I Shrunk the Kids. Like the film, this title from Obsidian Entertainment is also packed with humor, as well as a highly detailed backyard setting where characters battle against gigantic ants and spiders. This survival game can be played in either a first-person or third-person perspective and does a great job of navigating a story where players feel like they're on their own despite encounters with memorable characters. The level of difficulty increases with the discovery of new areas in the backyard, with challenges that include scavenger hunts. You can play solo as one of the teenage characters using various resources to reach their goal of returning to normal size, or you can game with others in the four-player cooperative multiplayer mode. 

Obsidian's development team put a lot of work into the insects' artificial intelligence, resulting in ants and other creatures reacting accordingly to how the player character behaves. Gamers with arachnophobia can also take advantage of an accessibility option that lets them control the scariness of spiders. The gameplay is engaging, with tasks like building a backyard base, managing resources to upgrade equipment, and leveling up characters to fulfill quests.  

Grounded was named Xbox Game of the Year at the 2022 Golden Joystick Awards, and there are plans for an animated series adaptation. 

Sea of Thieves 

For release on April 30, 2024, on PS5 

Sea of Thieves, developed by Rare and first released in 2018, is a multiplayer action-adventure title with plenty of swashbuckling action on the high seas. Microsoft says there are 35 million people playing the game, which can be cross-played across platforms. Fans of the Monkey Island series will revisit familiar spots and reacquaint themselves with old friends across two storylines and multiple tales. 

Players can customize their avatars and sail over the open sea in their quest to find Guybrush Threepwood, the self-proclaimed most powerful pirate in the world. From a first-person perspective, you can explore the vast, colorful open world on your own or team up with other players to battle krakens and other monsters of the sea. Part of the game's allure is that normally tedious tasks like using a compass to navigate become fun endeavors, while rewards for nonsensical activities such as synchronizing the pirate crew's musical performances add to the enjoyment factor. 

Sea of Thieves draws its influences from a diverse variety of sources, including the Pirates of the Caribbean movie franchise and the game The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker. The game won in the Evolving Game category at the 17th British Academy Games Awards and in the Visual Design category at the 2018 Independent Game Developers' Association Awards. 

More to Come? 

Will there be more Xbox-exclusive games making their way to other consoles? While Spencer warned that not all Xbox games will be ported to other systems, he also indicated that they’re waiting on how well the initial games will be received before taking any further action. But with the Xbox strategy of bringing more games to more players on more platforms, it isn’t unreasonable to hope for the release of more Xbox titles on other consoles. 

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About Lalaine Capucion: Lalaine has been working as a freelance writer and editor for more than 12 years, focusing on lifestyle, travel, and wellness. When she isn’t writing, she's most likely curled up with a good book or trying out a new recipe in the kitchen. She lives in Metro Manila, Philippines. 



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