The Best Xbox One Family Games Available Now

By Heidi Nicholas,
Minecraft

Choosing a good family friendly Xbox game can be daunting, especially if you've just picked up an Xbox. There are so many choices. The Xbox Game Pass programme alone has over 200 Xbox games to sort through. If you're searching for the best Xbox family games to get everyone playing along – or, let's face it, fighting over the final scores – look no further than this guide.

First, a word on age ratings. Age rating boards are there to protect minors from experiencing content that the board considers too mature. Age rating boards are not there to recommend what a three-year-old actually wants to play. For example, PC Building Simulator is rated at 3+. This is a game where players start their own PC repair business. The description says that "with an expansive marketplace full of real-world components you can finally stop dreaming of that ultimate PC and get out there, build it and see how it benchmarks in 3DMark". Unless you know any three year olds desperate to simulate their dream custom rig in 3DMark, this is probably not a game to get just because it has a 3+ rating on the cover.

We've picked out a number of games that we think are a good bet for family gatherings – suitable not only for children, but also for those uncles and grandparents who rarely pick up a controller unless someone forces them to. A fair few listed below are in the Xbox Game Pass games list. Xbox Game Pass is an incredibly good deal for the new console owner, opening up a library of over 200 games straight away. You can take advantage of the current offer for three months of Game Pass Ultimate (which includes Xbox Live Gold, and Xbox Game Pass for PC) for $1.

Ultimate 3 Months
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Ultimate 3 Months

Xbox Live Gold and over 100 high-quality games for one low monthly price. Play together with friends and discover your next favourite game. Terms apply. See description below. Joining Xbox Game Pass Ultimate will upgrade your remaining Xbox Live Gold or Xbox Game Pass for Console or Xbox Game Pass for PC time into Xbox Game Pass Ultimate for the same amount of time, up to 36 months. All conversions are final. See xbox.com/gamepass for details.



Untitled Goose Game


This one is definitely family-friendly, as long as you don't mind your kids learning how to cause as much havoc as is physically possible. Untitled Goose Game is a single-player indie which shot up in popularity once people realised how much they enjoyed being a horrible goose. It first released for Nintendo Switch in mid-2019, and rocketed to the top of the eShop, beating out Link's Awakening as it did so. It's a stealth sandbox, in which essentially the only antagonist is you; your only goal is to disrupt everybody's daily lives as much as possible. See a man enjoying a cup of tea and a newspaper? Steal his slippers, make him fall of his chair, throw everything in his neat little garden into chaos. See a boy who's afraid of geese? Chase him, steal his glasses, trip him up. It's fun. This one's particularly attractive since it's now in Xbox Game Pass, so if you've already got the subscription, it won't cost you any additional pennies to ruin everybody's day. The Untitled Goose Game achievements list might need a little adult supervision; while most of it is simple, there are some speed-run requirements that will need a deft hand.

Download from Microsoft Store

Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair


Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair came out in October earlier this year. It's a side-scrolling 2D platformer where the titular characters set out to save Queen Phoebee's Royal Beettalion Guard from their enemy, Capital B, who wants to use a Hivemind device to capture and enslave the bee kingdom, the Royal Stingdom. The Impossible Lair itself is Capital B's headquarters – this final area can be tackled at any time but it's best to level up your platforming duo first. You have to solve puzzles, explore levels, and collect different items, such as feathers, to unlock new areas. The Tonics feature is back in this game, and Yooka can drink these potions to change abilities, such as infinite rolling and super speed, or change the environment. Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair reviewed very well, and our own community members have rated it a 4.51 out of 5. It has an estimated completion time of around 20-25 hours. Bear in mind that this a real throwback platformer – the opening stages are easily accessible to kids, but the final requirements in the Yooka Laylee and the Impossible lair achievements list will test the mettle of even a hardened achievement hunter.

Download from Microsoft Store

Yonder: The Cloud Catcher Chronicles


Yonder: The Cloud Catcher Chronicles is an open-world adventure game set on the island of Gemea. The island has a range of different biomes, from beaches to snowy mountains, and is lush with animals and plantlife, yet it's also under threat from something called the "Murk". The player-character can contribute to the island through fishing, farming, crafting, cooking, brewing, and making friends with the locals, who'll offer up resources and rewards in their turn. But the player can also be Gemea's hero, and set off to look for the Sprites, who have the power to rid the island of the Murk. Yonder: The Cloud Catcher Chronicles is a single-player game. The Yonder achievements list isn't too bad, until you get to the most difficult one – finding fifty-five very small cats hidden throughout the world, some of which only appear during certain seasons.

(If you want to stick to Xbox Game Pass for your farming management fix, you could try My Time at Portia, which is similar – but that one is 7+ rated for some mild violence.)

Download from Microsoft Store

Riverbond


Riverbond is an action-adventure game set in a voxel world, where it is really, really satisfying to hack and smash everything until it explodes in a shower of tiny cubes. The basic story behind it is that the Knight has imprisoned the leaders of the Eight Worlds, and you're essentially on a mission to restore order, but it's hard to remember that whilst you're concentrating on playing as a donut (you can choose skins) and riding up waterfalls in a neon voxel world. It's got both single player and multiplayer capabilities; there's local co-op for up to 4 players. It's also on Xbox Game Pass. Here's another selling point: The Riverbond achievement list is pretty easy to complete with a little time investment.

Download from Microsoft Store

Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled


Note: This one has a PEGI rating of 7+, so it's intended for slightly older kids.

Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled is Activision's remaster of the classic arcade racing game, where you zoom about the place as Crash Bandicoot and co. It can be played as a single-player game, but works best when played with more people; it supports local multiplayer for up to four people, and local co-op for two. It can also be played with up to eight people through online multiplayer.

Once again, don't expect an easy ride from the Crash Team Racing achievements list, which includes a requirement to beat all of Nitrous Oxide's Time Trial times – a gargantuan feat back in the day that remains punishingly hard in the remake.

Download from Microsoft Store

Farm Together


Farm Together is a farming simulator where, you guessed it, you farm together. It can be played as single-player, but as the title suggests, it's probably better with others; it can be played as local multiplayer for up to four people, or online for up to 16, and with local co-op for up to four people. As with all the best sim games, you start from scratch. you can grow crops and trees, and take care of animals. Time progresses in the game even when you're not playing it, so it'll be different to come back to. You can have a pet, decorate your garden and farm, customise your avatar, and if you feel like a break, spend some time painting or cooking in your house. If you excuse the slightly terrifying art style of the animals, it looks a like a fun way to spend time. Plus, it has a permission system to ensure that even if you open the farm to the public, you can limit what strangers can do in your farm. You'll have to head online at least a little to finish off the Farm Together achievements list, and it's best to play with friends to speed up the rest.

Download from Microsoft Store

Overcooked! and Overcooked! 2


These two are always popular, although they can cause some serious arguments. In both Overcooked!Overcooked! 2, you play as a harried chef who has to meet order requirements under increasingly ridiculous levels of pressure — on a hot air balloon, in a mine, or on an alien planet. It does have a single-player option, but it's definitely great to play with friends or younger family members. It's got local multiplayer and co-op for up to four people, and online co-op and multiplayer for up to four. The arguments tend to come from the fact that co-operation is key — players might be stranded on opposite sides of the world's worst-designed kitchen, with one having access to the oven, and one having access to the ingredients. Couple that with a timer and the added pressure that the game gleefully throws at you, and it can get decidedly tense for such a cute-looking game. Both the Overcooked! games are popular, and our Overcooked! 2 site review gave the madcap cooking sim a 4.5/5.

Good luck getting many of the Overcooked! achievements while playing with your family – it's a tough list. The Overcooked! 2 achievement list isn't much better – there's an achievement in both games for dealing with a burning kitchen though, so you'll probably unlock that before everyone gets too mad at each other to play anymore.

Download from Microsoft Store

Rocket League


Rocket League has proven massively popular. Each player controls a car zooming around stadiums after giant-sized soccer balls and attempts to score. It is technically a sports game, a blend of soccer and air hockey, but it's got something for players of any genre. It's a simple premise but highly addictive, and works very well with other players. It's got local multiplayer for up to four, and online multiplayer, online co-op, and local co-op for up to eight. It's got numerous modes to try, and matches in which you can play together or against each other. The cars are also customisable, with extra cosmetics unlocking as you go, so you can drive around a car wearing a tiny wizard's hat and spurting green flames, if that's what you want. It's suitable for younger kids, and sort of addictive for all ages. If you have one family member who won't touch a console unless it's playing FIFA, you might be able to encourage them into new horizons with this one.

The original Rocket League achievements list isn't too taxing – some of our players have knocked it out in one of the game's many free weekends – but if you delve into the DLCs, featuring new maps and game modes, it might take a little more work. Luckily the community here have put together a decent Rocket League achievements walkthrough to help you out.

Download from Microsoft Store

Just Dance 2020


Just Dance 2020 is another of those games which does what it says on the tin. It's got 40 new tracks from the likes of Panic! At The Disco, Skrillex, and Ariana Grande. There's also a kids mode, which has eight kid-friendly songs suitable for younger players, and an option to make your own playlist, if you're looking to make an age-friendly Just Dance playlist. This one's not in Game Pass, but the Microsoft Store says that any purchase of the game also gets you a free one-month trial of Just Dance Unlimited, which has over 500 songs. It has both a single player option, and local multiplayer for up to six people. You don't even need a motion detecting camera to play, as you would in the old days – now you can download an app to your smartphone, which will track your moves as you bust them.

While you'll probably unlock plenty of Just Dance 2020 achievements through casual party play, bear in mind that you will really need to put in the work if you want to hit 100% completion.

Download from Microsoft Store

Minecraft


This one sort of goes without saying. Minecraft has proven to be endlessly popular, and suitable for most age ranges. For those of you who've somehow managed to avoid Minecraft for the last decade, it's a sandbox survival game where players build whatever they want, from huts to palaces, in a pixellated world, or fight enemies. It's had numerous updates since then, and there's a whole lot more to do now, including fishing, crafting, fighting, swimming, treasure hunting, trading, cooking, breeding animals, and of course, mining. It can be played as a single player experience, or with local co-op for up to four, or online co-op for up to eight. There's even some competitive multiplayer locally and online thanks to some mini-games added later in the game's life, but they're not too great; we suggest sticking to the co-op stuff.

It's worth mentioning that Minecraft is a veritable gold-mine when it comes to achievement hunting. Many entries in the Minecraft series are still getting updates, whether you're on Android, Xbox, PC, even Kindle Fire. We suggest you check out the Minecraft walkthrough for an efficient method of popping all those achievements across different devices – some of our dedicated community members have created downloadable worlds designed specifically to help you unlock as many achievements as possible. It's still fun to unlock them the old fashioned way, though.

Download from Microsoft Store

Forza Horizon 4 LEGO Speed Champions


LEGO Speed Champions is the second big expansion for Forza Horizon 4. It introduces a new LEGO Valley, and the option to make a Master Builder's House and garage from a Brick Collection. It also has a range of LEGO Speed Champions cars such as the McLaren Senna, Ferrari F40 Competizione and 1967 Mini Cooper S Rally. The base game, Forza Horizon 4, is both single player and multiplayer with online co-op for up to six people, and online multiplayer for up to 12. That base game is in Xbox Game Pass, and while you still have to pay for premium DLCs, as an Xbox Game Pass subscriber you do get a heavy discount on them.

Like all games and DLCs in the Forza Horizon series, the LEGO Speed Champions achievements list is both entertaining and challenging, requiring players to explore and to perfect their driving skills to finish it off.

Download from Microsoft Store

The LEGO Series


The LEGO Series is massive. It's got a load of movie franchises to explore, from Harry Potter and the Incredibles to Jurassic World and Marvel's Avengers, among original LEGO titles like the sandbox LEGO Worlds and games related to the Ninjago and City Undercover toy lines. Games in the LEGO series are always popular, and always fun to play in multiplayer. They all have local multiplayer, mostly for up to two people, all have the trademark quirky humour, and are all definitely suitable for most age ranges and abilities. Note: Due to some brick related violence, the PEGI rating is 7+.

Download from Microsoft Store

Hookbots


Hookbots is an action "robot party game", where you make robots and pit them in battle against your friends. It's got 14 game modes such as Hold the Flag, Robo Bomb, Team Deathmatch, and King of the Ring, and both single player and Xbox Live local multiplayer for up to four people. The robots themselves are customisable, with customisation options from knight bots, dinosaur bots, space warriors and bounty hunter bots.

The relative difficulty of the Hookbots achievements list is uncertain because not many of our site members have gotten to it yet. If you're registered on TrueAchievements – something you can achieve just by linking your Xbox account – you can always help out by submitting a guide of your own. Click on any achievement name to see guides that have already been written, plus a space for your to craft your own helpful solution.

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Spyro Reignited Trilogy and Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy


It can be a pretty divisive topic; whether you're a Spyro fan or Bandicoot fan. But both of these remastered trilogies are good fun whether you love the purple dragon (correct) or are more fond of the Bandicoot. Both are single-player platformers. The Spyro trilogy includes Spyro the Dragon, Spyro 2: Ripto's Rage, and Spyro: Year of the Dragon, where you'll be rescuing dragons, fighting Ripto, and recovering dragon eggs, respectively. They're a whole lot of fun, easy to learn, and sometimes tricky to master. The Crash Bandicoot trilogy includes Crash Bandicoot, Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back, and Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped, where most of the action takes place against Crash's nemesis, Doctor Neo Cortex. You can now get both games in a bundle, or go all out and bundle Crash Team Racing in there too. Note: Both trilogies are rated 7+ by PEGI due to some mild cartoonish violence.

While the debate rages on which game is the best, there seems to be no doubt which one is the hardest: According to our difficulty measuring ratios, the Crash Bandicoot N Sane Trilogy achievements list is more than twice as tricky to finish than the Spyro Reignited Trilogy achievements list.

Download from Microsoft Store

Party Golf


Party Golf is an action (yes, action) game with both single player and multiplayer (local for up to eight people), which is the first to describe itself as "less golf, more party". It's set in a brightly coloured 2D world, and it's basically a free-for-all to get through the level. It's got more than 100 modes, and the ability to make your own with the gameplay customisation system, and a load of random features such as banana balls, night golf, and something ominously named "rat-king". Note: The PEGI rating is 7+.

Don't expect an easy ride from the Party Golf achievement list – you will have to win a match of every single one of those 100+ game modes to finish it.

Download from Microsoft Store

There's still many more family friendly games around – this is just a jumping-off point if you're not sure where to start. Whether you're into farming, space survival, fighting robots, party golf, or PC building, there should be something on this list to catch your eye. Be sure to keep an eye on the ever-evolving Xbox Game Pass games list for more games to enjoy with your family.
Heidi Nicholas
Written by Heidi Nicholas
Hey, I'm Heidi! I've just finished studying a Masters in English Literature, but I've been obsessed with gaming since long before then. I began on the PS2 with Spyro, before graduating to the Xbox 360 and disappearing into Skyrim. I'm now a loyal RPG fan, but I still like to explore other genres — when I'm not playing Assassin's Creed Odyssey, or being lured back into Red Dead Redemption 2 or The Witcher 3!