Table of Contents[Hide][Show]
- #34 Cities Skylines
- #33 Untitled Goose Game
- #32 Among Us
- #31 Moving Out
- #30 Human Fall Flat
- #29 Unpacking
- #28 Deep Rock Galactic
- #27 Kingdom Two Crowns
- #26 The Artful Escape
- #25 It Takes Two
- #24 The Sims 4
- #23 Unravel Series
- #22 No Man's Sky
- #21 Planet Coaster
- #20 Farming Simulator 2019
- #19 PC Building Simulator
- #18 Fishing Planet
- #17 Ori and The Blind Forest
- #16 Fall Guys
- #15 Coffee Talk
- #14 House Flipper
- #13 The Witness
- #12 SnowRunner
- #11 Gone Home
- #10 Firewatch
- #9 Katamari Damacy Reroll
- #8 Slime Rancher
- #7 Rime
- #6 Donut County
- #5 Minecraft
- #4 Abzu
- #3 Stardew Valley
- #2 A Short Hike
- #1 What Remains Of Edith Finch
There are definitely a lot of action and adventure games to choose from this year. Between sci-fi adventures in deep space and open-world expeditions in fantastical lands, gaming truly has it all. However, sometimes games are at their best when they help you relax and unwind. Chill, cosy titles have a solid place in the hearts of many gamers. If you’re looking for something that will help you switch off from reality in a calming way, this list of the best and most relaxing casual Xbox Series X/S games to play right now should help you find your perfect match.
#34 Cities Skylines
Publisher: Paradox Interactive
Developer: Colossal Order
Release Date: March 10, 2015
When it comes to relaxing types of games to play, it’s hard to go wrong with city builders. They are simple and fun, and you can go wild with the designs and creations you make.
Cities Skylines is easily one of the best games of the genre to play, and you should definitely partake in it. You’ll get a place to build on and let loose to make your city! The twist is that you have to take care and ensure you build it the right way. The point is to create a functional city, not just one that looks good.
You’ll also have DLC to add in and bring new challenges, like natural disasters! So dive in and see what kind of wonderful city you can make.
#33 Untitled Goose Game
Publisher: Panic Inc
Developer: House House
Release Date: September 20, 2019
Animal games aren’t as numerous as you might expect, and anthropomorphic games don’t count!
In Untitled Goose Game, though, you’ll get to live the life of a goose as it goes about town. To what end? To screw with the townspeople! What else?
Using your honks, you’ll be able to get all sorts of reactions from the local people. You can also grab objects of theirs to get them to chase you. So waddle around and see what crazy times you can create and how many effective ways you can use your honk.
If that’s not enough for you, grab a friend and unleash two geese on the world!
#32 Among Us
Release Date: June 15, 2018
We’ll admit, Among Us isn’t a “relaxing title” overall, mainly because the game focuses on a group of people trying to figure out which one is a secret killer! That can get very stressful, especially after you make a few wrong guesses and the stress level rises.
Work your way through the various maps of the game to complete tasks. But be wary; every time you pass one of your “teammates,” it could be the imposter in disguise!
When you find a body, report it, and then debate with the others to see who should get ejected.
Will you find the imposter before everyone is dead?
#31 Moving Out
Developer: SMG Studios
Release Date: April 28, 2020
The act of moving is never easy, and people often seek help to ensure that things get transported safely. In the title Moving Out, you will lead a moving company to new heights! That is if you can get the jobs done.
This physics-based title will make you rethink everything you know about moving. Team up with three friends via co-op and work together to complete jobs you’re hired to do. But moving furniture around is anything but easy in this game. Figure out how to use the terrain and the physics to your adventure so you can get everything onto your truck, even if that means hurling everything into the air to get the job done.
#30 Human Fall Flat
Publisher: Curve Digital
Developer: No Brakes Games
Release Date: July 22, 2016
Human Fall Flat is another in a long line of physics-based platforms. The twist is that it plays things a bit looser than other titles to ramp up the fun.
Here, you’ll play as your character avatar placed in various dreamscapes to navigate. Some will be castles, scary nighttime locations, and so on. You’ll have plenty of options on how to get through the areas and can even team up with seven other players via co-op to get through them. A new addition comes via the Tower level, where scaling up the intense structure will test you to the limit!
Publisher: Humble Bundle
Developer: Witch Beam
Release Date: November 2, 2021
How about a game that’s focused on reaching a state of Zen? Is that appealing to you?
Unpacking is the title you’ll want to look for if that’s the case. The game is simple by design. You’ll go on a “quest” to unpack a series of rooms in a home. Everything is in boxes, and it’s up to you to place everything exactly where you think it should go.
You’ll have plenty of spaces to decorate from the kitchen to the bedrooms and more as you learn more about the family you’re helping via the items you move.
Unpacking is built to be relaxing as you fill the rooms at your own pace. So dive in and enjoy!
#28 Deep Rock Galactic
Publisher: Coffee Stain Studios
Developer: Ghost Ship Games
Release Date: February 28, 2018
To some, relaxing doesn’t mean playing a “peaceful title” but rather, a game where they can let loose on enemies and enjoy wiping them out.
Deep Rock Galactic will scratch that itch for you. In the title, you’ll play as a set of four dwarves across a 4-person co-op. Their mission is to dive into a deep cave system and extract as many resources as possible. But that won’t be easy when alien hordes are coming after you in the caves.
Light them up with various weapons, and use the fully destructible environments to your advantage to make it out alive with your loot!
#27 Kingdom Two Crowns
Publisher: Raw Fury
Developer: Thomas Van Den Berg
Release Date: December 11, 2018
In Kingdom Two Crowns, you’ll play the role of a monarch attempting to keep their kingdom from ruin. On top of your mighty steed, you’ll ride across the lands, recruit subjects, build up your realm, and defend it from evil. The minimalist approach to the game is on full display, which will help you relax as you play.
There’s also a campaign mode that will have your monarch trying to defeat “The Greed” to secure the safety of his kingdom.
If you wish to shake things up, you can play as a Shogun or a ruler of dead lands! The choice is yours, so protect your kingdom!
#26 The Artful Escape
Publisher: Annapurna Interactive
Developer: Beethoven & Dinosaur
Release Date: September 9, 2021
Musicians often struggle with not only making music but trying to define who they are as performers. In The Artful Escape, you will have such a challenge via Francis Vendetti. He is a young man trying to escape the legacy his famous musical uncle left him.
Right before his first major performance, he goes on a mental journey to discover who he is and isn’t.
Music and its power are on full display here, including the psychedelic realms you will travel to as you help Francis on his journey.
An all-star voice cast adds weight to the title, so get ready to jam with the best as a new musical legend is born.
#25 It Takes Two
Developer: Hazelight Studios
Release Date: March 26, 2021
It Takes Two is a powerful game featuring a profound story about a married couple trying to overcome their differences in an extraordinary way.
In this case, their daughter accidentally turned them into dolls after hearing about their impending separation. So now, they must work through a fantastical toy-filled world to get back to normal and maybe resolve their differences and save their marriage.
The title is focused entirely on co-op play. You MUST work with your partner to overcome the various puzzles put in front of you. Only then will you succeed and get one step closer to being human again.
#24 The Sims 4
Release Date: September 2, 2014
The Sims is probably the most popular simulation game out there. It takes everything that makes life fun and removes the annoying burdens of everyday life. The most important thing you should remember playing The Sims 4 is for your Sim to take a shower and eat – something very relatable for gamers.
Starting from October 18, 2022, The Sims 4 will be free-to-play on all platforms. It will therefore cost nothing to create your ideal life online, or drown the Sims you hate by removing the ladder from the pool. Or rather, build a fence around the pool to prevent them from getting out, since the developers decided Sims could now get out of the water even without a ladder.
#23 Unravel Series
Developer: Coldwood Interactive
Release Date: February 9, 2016
In 2016, EA released Unravel, a cute puzzle-platform game starring a tiny creature made of yarn. Two years later, Unravel received a sequel, giving players even more of that peaceful casual adventure.
Unravel and its sequel both revolve around solving puzzles and overcoming obstacles. But if the original Unravel was only a single-player adventure, Unravel 2 brings in a second character made of yarn to explore this world with another player. Cooperation is key to solving the puzzles and progressing through the story. The difficulty is higher in Unravel 2 than in the original game, but it remains a relaxing casual game to play in local co-op.
#22 No Man’s Sky
Publisher: Hello Games
Developer: Hello Games
Release Date: August 7, 2016
If you would like to unwind with a casual space simulation game, No Man’s Sky was made for you. It offers an unlimited number of procedurally generated planets to explore, from welcoming planets filled with friendly alien lifeforms to deadly rocks floating in space where the toxic air could kill you.
Over the past few years, No Man’s Sky regularly published updates to improve the game. These updates brought many features, such as multiplayer components, space fleet management, more animals, and additional base-building options. No Man’s Sky is now what it promised to be back in 2016: a gigantic open world with plenty of planets to discover.
#21 Planet Coaster
Publisher: Frontier Developments
Developer: Frontier Developments
Release Date: November 17, 2016
Theme parks are fun, but managing your own amusement park is even funnier. Planet Coaster is the successor to 1994’s Theme Park and 2004’s RollerCoaster Tycoon 3. It sets you at the head of your own amusement park, and it is up to you to build the best park your visitors have ever seen. Or try killing them with an unfinished roller coaster.
If the Career Mode sets a number of objectives to complete, the funniest way to play Planet Coaster is through the Sandbox Mode. You can do pretty much anything you want: create your own rollercoasters, place decorations, and set the price for each of your rides and shops.
#20 Farming Simulator 2019
Publisher: Giants Software, Focus Entertainment
Developer: Giants Software
Release Date: November 19, 2018
Farming Simulator is exactly what it sounds like: a farming simulator. You get your own farm, purchase tractors and other machinery, breed livestock, grow crops, and sell your goods.
Farming Simulator 2019 brings various improvements to the series. It offers a complete overhaul of the graphics engine, improving the realism of the game. This title also introduces new vehicles and tools, as well as more livestock including for the first time horses. You can play Farming Simulator 2019 solo, but if you would like to team up with other players, the game supports online multiplayer for up to 16 farmers.
#19 PC Building Simulator
Publisher: The Irregular Corporation
Developer: Claudiu Kiss
Release Date: January 29, 2019
Building a PC is the best way to have a powerful machine. However, this can be quite expensive. Luckily, you don’t need to spend a dime to change your CPU or GPU in PC Building Simulator, an indie simulation game.
The goal of the Career Mode of PC Building Simulator is quite straightforward: you are at the head of an IT support company that helps users and their computers. You will have to run diagnoses, repair what needs to be fixed, and create custom computers for your clients. PC Building Simulator has partnerships with the main brands of PC components, so you can also create your dream PC without actually spending hundreds or thousands on new components.
#18 Fishing Planet
Publisher: Fishing Planet LLC
Developer: Fishing Planet LLC
Release Date: August 11, 2015
If you have a passion for fishing but don’t really like going outdoors, Fishing Planet could be a good substitution. This free-to-play simulation game brings you to gorgeous fishing spots without leaving the comfort of your sofa, with over 170 species of fish to catch.
Fishing Planet supports three types of fishing: float, spinning, and bottom. There are thousands of tackles and lures combinations, each attracting a different kind of fish. The weather is realistic, with day and night cycles, rain, fog, and change of seasons. And you don’t have to stay on the shore, watching the fish from afar: you can catch the best fish by riding a kayak or one of the three available motor boats. Fishing Planet supports crossplay on mobile, so you can play with your friends even if they are actually fishing outside.
#17 Ori and The Blind Forest
Publisher: Microsoft Studios
Developer: Moon Studios
Release Date: March 11, 2015
Ori and The Blind Forest is a poetic platform adventure. You control Ori and Sein, respectively a white guardian spirit and the light and eyes of the Spirit Tree. Each of these characters has its own abilities which will prove useful to solve the various puzzles that will come your way.
This platform-adventure game tells the story of an orphan that needs to find a way to save his home. It explores deep topics but in a poetic way, offering a casual experience with just the right amount of challenge to keep players interested. Ori and The Blind Forest received raving reviews on all platforms, with praise for its story, visuals, music, and gameplay.
#16 Fall Guys
Publisher: Epic Games, Devolver Digital
Release Date: August 4, 2020
Unless you have been living in a cave for the past two years, you probably already heard about Fall Guys. This platform battle royale sees jellybean characters fighting each other through an obstacle course, pushing one another until only one remains.
Fall Guys is a fun game to play with others. Up to 60 players face each other in various minigames, mostly obstacle courses where the jellybean characters have to jump or climb to get to the finish line. Since only one player can be victorious, betrayal is common in Fall Guys. Don’t be surprised if your loved one pushes you into an obstacle to win the race, it’s all part of the game.
#15 Coffee Talk
Publisher: Toge Productions, Chorus Worldwide
Developer: Toge Productions
Release Date: January 2020
A visual novel style of game that endeavours to tell a multitude of stories, Coffee Talk is perhaps more of a chilled reading experience as opposed to an especially playable game. That said, if you’re looking to delve into some cosy and relaxed storytelling then it’s a game worth checking out. Players will take on the role of a coffee barista working late-night openings at a coffee shop in Seattle. Set in a fantasy world where a range of humans and non-humans coexist somewhat fractiously. Players will mix different kinds of drinks for their customers and listen to their stories each night. There’s plenty of dialogue reading involved in Coffee Talk, but it has warm, chilled-out vibes that some players will enjoy more than others.
#14 House Flipper
Developer: Frozen District
Release Date: May 2018
House Flipper gives players the chance to renovate and redesign houses in this engaging interior (and exterior) design simulator. If the idea of buying a house, doing it up and selling it on for a profit is something that’s pretty much out of reach in real life the House Flipper could help you live out that dream in a virtual world. This is an entertaining and fairly unique type of simulation game that players who enjoy constructing and creating their own bases in games. There’s definitely a certain satisfaction to be had from taking a run-down house and turning it into something more attractive, so this game is bound to appeal to those who love to create their own spaces and turn a profit while doing so.
#13 The Witness
Publisher: Thekla, Inc
Developer: Thekla, Inc
Release Date: January 2016
Another puzzle game that involves exploring an unusual island is The Witness. This is a game based on lots of trial and error mechanics. It encourages players to solve a variety of puzzles throughout the game’s island setting but provides no specific instructions on how to do so, meaning it’s entirely down to players to use their logic skills and critical thinking when tackling each one. This is a relaxing game for those that enjoy exploring an open-world setting and using their perception skills to help them work out the next steps to take. The Witness is packed with problem and puzzle-solving and will speak to those who really enjoy deciphering mysteries without any kind of external help.
Publisher: Focus Entertainment
Developer: Saber Interactive
Release Date: April 2020
SnowRunner is an enjoyable casual title for those who love a bit of off-road action. Set in the snowy wilds of rural North America and rural Russia, players will be tasked with delivering various types of cargo across rugged, icy landscapes. Traversal of these difficult types of terrain is helped somewhat by the player’s choice of vehicles, with a large selection of trucks to select from. These can also be upgraded along the way as the player progresses, depending on how well they perform in their delivery tasks and additional missions. SnowRunner is an enjoyable simulation game for those who want a bit of environmental challenge to accompany their off-road driving escapades.
#11 Gone Home
Publisher: The Fullbright Company
Developer: The Fullbright Company
Release Date: August 2013
Gone Home is a game in which players get to explore an abandoned family home to try and solve the mystery of events surrounding their absence. Players will take on the role of Katie Greenbriar, a 21-year-old who returns home in 1995 to discover a note from her younger sister asking her to work out why the house is now deserted. It’s all very mysterious and the house itself is packed with different objects to interact with as you work to unravel the story underpinning the game. Gone Home is quite an intense and compelling game that will draw players into its storyline the more they explore. A great casual game for those who enjoy solving a mystery.
Publisher: Campo Santo, Panic
Developer: Campo Santo
Release Date: February 2016
In Firewatch, players will see themselves going on an adventure in a new job role, a fire lookout based in the Shoshone National Forest back in 1989. This new job comes with a lot of exploration of the beautiful but dangerous terrain of the national park and it’s not long before players will find themselves at the heart of an enthralling mystery. Firewatch is a relaxing casual Xbox game full of adventure that’s underpinned by an engaging story at its core. It also makes great use of the open-world setting of the national park, so players can explore the natural surroundings of the environment in their own time.
#9 Katamari Damacy Reroll
Publisher: Bandai Namco
Release Date: December 2018
A cartoonishly crazy action-adventure game that centres upon the rolling of a ball to pick up additional objects, Katamari Damacy Reroll is something of a cult classic. There’s a simple notion to this game, in which you control a ball in order to roll over smaller objects, thus absorbing them into your overall size and helping your ball to grow in stature. It’s kind of bonkers but incredibly compelling, especially considering the sheer scale of things that you can eventually roll over. Katamari Damacy Reroll is a lot of fun and definitely a great relaxing casual Xbox game to chill out and unwind with.
#8 Slime Rancher
Publisher: Monomi Park
Developer: Monomi Park
Release Date: August 2017
Slime Rancher is a fun and colourful life-sim adventure game in which players must take on the role of “slime rancher” Beatrix LeBeau. After relocating from Earth to a planet known as the Far Far Range, players will need to use their skills to set up their very own otherworldly ranch. The main part of doing this is collecting, caring for, feeding and breeding the planet’s native slimes. This is done via a portable vacuuming system (the player’s Vacpack), which effectively hoovers up slimes ready for you to take back to your ranch. This is an original take on crafting and resource gathering and is a creatively chilled caper for those looking for something a bit different in a casual relaxing Xbox game.
Publisher: Grey Box, Six Foot
Developer: Tequila Works
Release Date: May 2017
An adventure puzzle game that transports players to a mysterious island, Rime encourages exploration and discovery in a relaxing fashion. Players will step into the shoes of a young boy who finds himself somewhat lost on an enchanting new island. With a loyal fox companion at their side, players will be tasked with exploring this strange new land and working to unlock its secrets. This is a relaxing game that isn’t too mentally taxing in terms of the puzzles and challenges and the story itself is surprisingly emotive. Rime is definitely an atmospheric and engaging environment to explore. This is a game that’s worth playing if you’re keen to unwind peacefully and experience an emotional narrative at the same time.
#6 Donut County
Publisher: Annapurna Interactive
Developer: Ben Esposito
Release Date: July 2018
A game in which players become a growing hole in the ground, Donut County employs a similar strategy to that of Katamari Damacy Reroll in that the more the player consumes, the larger it becomes. Players can move the hole around in order to swallow different types of objects and items, which in turn help the hole to grow larger. There are puzzle elements to consider when navigating the hole through the game’s different levels, which gives Donut County more complexity than might first appear. This is a great relaxing casual Xbox title if you’re looking to unwind with some fun, physics-based world destruction without coming across as too well, destructive.
Publisher: Mojang, Xbox Game Studios, Sony Interactive Entertainment
Release Date: November 2011
The ultimate sandbox game has to be Minecraft, in which players can explore a procedurally generated world full of different blocks and craft, create and chill to their heart’s content. Minecraft is currently the best-selling video game to date, and its casual, chilled vibe has probably got a lot to do with that statistic. In Minecraft, players can choose from different game modes to ensure either a competitive, cooperative or simple solo experience to suit their mood. There’s also a creative mode, in which players can build their own worlds to enjoy alone or with friends. Minecraft is one of those games where the possibilities are seemingly endless, and for that reason, it’s a great way to de-stress without any kind of mission-based pressures.
Publisher: 505 Games
Developer: Giant Squid
Release Date: August 2016
In Abzu, players can experience the underwater world through deep-sea diving. As a primarily exploration-based adventure, Abzu brings richly-detailed underwater environments to life. Players can interact with the wide variety of unique ocean creatures and sea life that they’ll encounter whilst swimming in the depths of the waters. In addition, they’ll be able to delve into the deepest depths of the ocean to uncover mysterious secrets whilst avoiding the hidden predators that lurk there. Abzu is a gorgeously relaxing casual Xbox game that will give players an atmospheric experience of a world that many of us will never get to visit in reality.
#3 Stardew Valley
Release Date: February 2016
Stardew Valley is one of the most iconic casual games out there and is another cult classic title. In the game, players see themselves returning to their late grandfather’s farm in Stardew Valley, where they’re tasked with restoring their new home to its former glory. Players can farm, craft, mine, fish and meet a multitude of interesting NPCs during their time in Stardew Valley. It’s a colourful and carefully designed game that sums up relaxation as a gameplay format. As one of the top cosy games on this list, Stardew Valley is definitely a great way to disconnect from the fast-paced stresses of the real world for a while.
#2 A Short Hike
Publisher: Adamgryu, Whippoorwill Limited
Release Date: April 2019
A Short Hike is a cute but incredibly creatively designed open-world adventure game. As protagonist Claire (who happens to be a bird), players can explore in different ways such as flying, climbing, jogging and even swimming as they try to achieve their ultimate goal. The aim of the adventure is to reach the top of a mountain in order to get reception for your phone. However, the journey is packed with side quests and lots of other animals to interact with and help out along the way. A Short Hike is really relaxing and epitomises cosy, pressure-free gaming while still offering up a lot for players to do, if they want to.
#1 What Remains Of Edith Finch
Publisher: Annapurna Interactive
Developer: Giant Sparrow
Release Date: April 2017
What Remains of Edith Finch is one of those games that truly stays with you long after you’ve finished your playthrough. An incredibly engaging and beautifully designed experience, this game revolves around the doomed family of the player’s protagonist Edith Finch. As Edith, players will return to their mysterious mansion of a family home and explore the stories of each family member who lived there, as well as learn how each one met their untimely demise. It’s a haunting, beautiful and incredibly emotional set of narratives that simply needs to be experienced to be fully appreciated. Definitely a must-play game, but be prepared to become totally hooked from the start.