What could leave Xbox Game Pass in January 2023?

By Luke Albigés,

Aside from first-party Xbox games and the odd exception, Game Pass titles don't stick around forever. Here's a look at some of the games whose spell in the service could come to an end soon to help you plan your gaming time.

Our list of the best games on Game Pass changes all the time, with new games added and others leaving the service every couple of weeks. We already know about January's first wave of losses — Microsoft has confirmed we're set to lose Nobody Saves the World, Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc Anniversary Edition, Pupperazzi, Windjammers 2, and The Anacrusis in a couple of weeks — but there will also be a second wave of exits at the end of the month. Since Game Pass titles tend to stick around for fixed periods (typically 12-24 months), we've looked back over some of the games that could be set to leave soon, to give you a heads-up ahead of any official word of them bowing out in case you still want to make a start on working your way through them early.

12 months
deaths door

First up, we've got the games that joined the service in January last year and are now coming up on 12 months in the service — a fairly typical length of time for many Game Pass games to stick around. Three games joined alongside confirmed January leavers Pupperazzi and Windjammers 2, and it's possible that Death's Door could tap out like similar Devolver games that have previously done 12-month runs. It's a great little game and a fairly manageable completion so you shouldn't need to rush this one even if its time is up. Rainbow Six Extraction, on the other hand, feels unlikely to leave just yet as it would kill off much of its player base and potentially even the game, although it's a fairly long and grindy completion if you do want to get cracking just in case. The third game coming up on 12 months' notice is actually three games in itself, and this one seems likely to leave — as announced earlier this week, Hitman Trilogy will no longer exist in its current form as of January 26th, with Hitman 3 getting rebranded as World of Assassination and containing the standard content from the first two games, and the originals will be removed from the store. As such, Hitman Trilogy will certainly be leaving Game Pass later this month... it just remains to be seen whether World of Assassination might take the place of Trilogy, but we should find out soon enough.

A few other January 2022 additions could also be leaving soon — Olija and Spelunky 2 both joined alongside The Anacrusis twelve months ago, and four of the other games that arrived at the same time (Embr, Gorogoa, Outer Wilds, and The Pedestrian) have already been removed. The former is a quick and easy completion, but Spelunky 2 will demand a lot of skill and dedication. You have been warned. Finally, Taiko no Tatsujin: The Drum Master! was a late inclusion at the tail end of last January, but a legit completion from scratch would be impossible if it ends up leaving later this month — several achievements involve a month's worth of daily logins, and while these can be cheesed by manipulating time and date settings, it's still an extremely grindy completion.

18 months
the ascent review

Most of the games that joined Game Pass back in July 2021 have already bowed out, but two remain that may yet be among this month's leavers — Gang Beasts and The Ascent. The former is a quick and easy completion (especially with a second controller) while the latter isn't too much of a grind and should be doable comfortably inside the usual two weeks' official notice of leaving, so these shouldn't offer too much cause for concern even if they do end up leaving Game Pass later this month.

24 months
18/12/2018 - Carousel

Finally, going back two years, we find another quick completion in the excellent Donut County, which has already outstayed other Annapurna titles like Twelve Minutes and The Artful Escape, each of which only stuck around for 12 months. The only other January 2021 additions that are still around are Yakuza 3-5 Remastered, and while it would be a shame to break up the series, it feels like they might be here to stay — just last year, Sega brought three of the games back to the service after they were removed, so it feels like a concerted effort to have the entire mainline series in one place. If we're wrong, though, you'll likely struggle to find time to work through all three massive games by the end of the month, so fingers crossed the Yakuza games are keepers for Game Pass. The Remastered Collection, which includes all three games, is currently 65% off on the store if you'd rather be safe than sorry and have these great games to keep, though.

Going to be starting and/or finishing up any of these, just in case? Let us know!
Luke Albigés
Written by Luke Albigés
Luke runs the TA news team, contributing where he can primarily with reviews and other long-form features — crafts he has honed across two decades of print and online gaming media experience, having worked with the likes of gamesTM, Eurogamer, Play, Retro Gamer, Edge, and many more. He loves all things Monster Hunter, enjoys a good D&D session, and has played way too much Destiny.
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