Fishing in stardew valley

10 Best Relaxing Games on Xbox Game Pass

July 6, 2022

By: Samantha Plaisance

 
 

Xbox Game Pass is filled to the brim with amazing content made to help gamers relax after a long day at the office. From serene farming sims to calm fishing games, Game Pass truly has it all. Whether you're looking for a moment of peace or a game that is just so simple that it takes minuscule amounts of brain power, this list has you covered. Here is a list of some of the best relaxing games on Xbox Game Pass to date.

10 - SnowRunner

Photo of a truck carrying a load through the snow in the Snow Runner Video game.

 

From the developers at Saber Interactive comes an off-road simulation game all about taking heavy hauls across devastating terrain. SnowRunner is no ordinary sim, this is hyper-realistic and made to make the player feel as if they are really in the driver's seat of these big rigs trying to make their way to their destinations. The player's job is to bring the load of cargo from its starting point to its ending point, all while trying not to fall off the side of treacherous mountains.

As the player progresses and finishes missions, they make money they can use to upgrade their vehicle of choice or purchase a new one if they see fit. All of the different environments are based on real places that have succumbed to some form of natural disaster, which is why the terrain is so rough for players to traverse. The game also comes with DLC content players can purchase new skins, maps, or vehicles to use.

 
 

Read more about SnowRunner:

9 - Slime Rancher

Slime Rancher Load Screen from Steam

 
 

One of the cutest and silliest games to hit the market, Slime Rancher is a first-person simulation game where the player traverses the open world, looking for slimes of all different colors to bring back to their ranch. Players will collect slimes using a little vacuum, or vacpack, and shoot them out into their designated pens to prevent cross breeding.

Cross breeding the wrong slimes will cause them to turn into cannibalistic tar monsters who will swallow the other slimes whole, destroying all of the progress the player has made. The main concept of the game is to feed the slimes the appropriate foods for them to produce plorts, which is, well, their excrement that players sell for profit.

Once players obtain a good amount of slimes in their color-coordinated pens and begin breeding them, they will produce plorts like crazy as long as players feed them the right foods. This makes a fat stack of cash for the player to use to upgrade their pens, catching machines, and even upgrade their equipment to make traveling faster.

Read more about Slime Rancher:

 
 

8 - Terraria

Terraria gameplay scene with a house built

Picture Minecraft but 16-bit and with more fighting options. Terraria is a 2D sandbox type game where players will explore for resources, build homes, and survive attacks from monsters around the map. Players will need to explore caves below to mine ores to craft items such as tools to help them with combat and crafting.

A lot of necessary items will drop off of specific monsters or in specific biomes found as players travel. The more progression the players make, such as defeating bosses and gathering certain items, NPCs (non-playing characters) will begin to take up residence in the players homes. These NPCs offer different services or items that the players may need as they go further into the game, so they become a major asset.

All around the game is simple but intricate, keeping players engaged without all of the crazy flashing lights and hectic battles other games showcase.

 
 

Read more about Terraria:

7 - Forager 

Forager Home screen with little character holding a pickaxe

Looking for a game that contains a few idle-like mechanics with a dash of adventure? Forager is an open-world adventure-exploration game where players will craft, gather resources, kill enemies, and take care of their thriving environment.

As players progress through the levels, more tools and resources become available keeping the content fresh and exciting. The game includes sims found in real-life such as fishing, cooking, engineering, and hunting, so players are sure to be able to keep their mind busy during the entirety of the gameplay.

Read more about Forager:

6 - Donut County

Donut County Screenshot of a cartoon alligator relaxing on a lawn chair.

Created by indie developer Ben Esposito, Donut County is a neat little game about controlling holes they can spawn all across the map. Basically the entire aim of the game is to create as much chaos as possible by controlling this hole and moving it around to swallow more and more objects.

As players swallow objects, the hole will grow in size and wreak more havoc on Donut County. The game does feature quite a few puzzles, where players will need to use their wits to rid the hole of any extra contaminants that may be stopping it from swallowing buildings whole. This includes things like debris or water filling the hole, which will need to be removed in order to continue on.

Read more about Donut County and Ben Esposito:

5 - Abzu

Screenshot of player swimming through the water in the game Abzu

A phenomenal and visually stunning exploration-adventure game, ABZU is a game where the player becomes a diver that must explore the vast unknown ocean below. Players will scour the waters for ancient technologies and ruins that have not been encountered for centuries.

The aim of the game is to determine what exactly is harming the local environment and uncover the secrets lurking below in the depths. The game showcases beautiful graphics, making the fish and underwater wildlife just look amazing. The feel of the game gives off nothing but pure peace and leaves a long lasting impression on gamers about our world as we know it.

Read more about ABZU:

4 - Tetris Effect: Connected 

Tetris Effect Screenshot of gameplay

A game that is sure to bring back memories of playing a well-known classic, Tetris Effect: Connected is an arcade style puzzle game where different-shaped blocks drop down for players to quickly and accurately stack in perfect form. Just as in the original Tetris gamers have loved for years, players will need to stack the blocks onto the playfield to create complete lines.

The recreation of the game contains a feature that allows players to stop time, adding a bit of depth to the gameplay. The game also includes progression features, where players can level up and take on new challenges to test their wit.

Read more about Tetris Effect: Connected:

3 - Spiritfarer

Spiritfarer loading screen with animals on a canoe in red water

Published by Thunder Lotus Games, Spiritfarer is truly one of a kind. This management sim and sandbox game is all about players contacting spirits aboard their ship and meeting their needs in order to keep them happy. Players will need to set off to obtain supplies and resources that the spirits ask for in order to build all of the amenities of home.

The aim of this game is to ensure the spirits feel at home on the vessel as they attempt to cross over into the afterlife. They even included a Tetris-like aspect, where players need to stack the resources onto the boat accordingly to ensure that everything fits, giving it almost a puzzle-like feel on top of everything else.

Read more about Spiritfarer:

2 - The Gardens Between 

The gardens between characters standing in the open air, looking at their surroundings

A game that revolves around puzzle solving is a perfect way to relax the mind after a stressful day of life as we know it. The Gardens Between features around 20 different levels to conquer, which all include different obstacles for players to face head-on. The game really only focuses on one aspect, and that is simply to manipulate the flow of time in order to reach the player's goals.

Players do not control the characters in a way of moving them forward and back, but instead through the movement of time and space around the characters in order to move them backwards and forwards along the path set. Players will notice that one of the characters, Frendt, has the ability to interact with devices and objects that control the flow of time, which is necessary to move obstructions out of the way in order for players to progress further into the game.

Read more about The Gardens Between:

1 - Stardew Valley

Screenshot of player standing on plot of land in stardew valley

Stardew Valley has to be one of the most well-known and most-played games on the market as of writing this. With its cute 16-bit-inspired graphics, intricate gameplay, and fun features, the game has taken the world by storm. Players will take on the life of their character who has become fed up with the stresses of modern-day life and decides to take their grandfather's advice and read the note he gave them. The note states that they have inherited his plot of land set back into the woods, and they are now the caretakers of said land. Players will need to level up, grow crops, craft items and keep the weeds and unwanted rocks at bay as they grow their little farm into a thriving business.

Throughout the game, players will venture to different locations within the nearby village and make friends with those who live there to sell and purchase goods. The game also features an internal clock, character exhaustion level, and health bar that determines how much the character can handle throughout the in-game day.

Overall, the game is fun, a little tedious at times, but makes for a great way to relax with its calming aesthetic.

Read more about Stardew Valley:


This concludes our list of the best relaxing games available on Xbox Game Pass to date. Are there any that we may have missed? Let us know in the comments below. If you're looking for new games added to Game Pass in June or how to play Xbox Game pass on Safari, we've got you covered!