Windows Central Recommended Award

Whether you're into racing games, shooters, role-playing titles, or simply want to know what the Xbox platform really has to offer, look no further. These are the best Xbox One games you can buy in 2018.

Microsoft's Xbox One platform features some of the biggest and best video games in the industry today, and often with the best visuals thanks to the 4K-powered Xbox One X. This article pulls together the best game for every major genre in 2018, as chosen by Windows Central's gaming staff.

Must play

Red Dead Redemption 2

Red Dead Redemption 2 is in a league of its own, representing the best the video game industry has to offer. This action-packed Wild West shooter features some of the best writing, visuals, and gameplay the industry has ever seen, and it is more than worth your time and money. Everyone should play this.

$60 at Amazon

Best RPG

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

The Witcher 3 is right up there with the best games of all time and easily takes its place as the best RPG on Xbox One today. Playing as monster-hunter-for-hire Geralt of Rivia, you end up intertwined in everything from regional military politics, local squabbles, and averting the apocalypse itself. Witcher 3 is a landmark title that everybody needs to play.

$50 at Microsoft

Best multiplayer shooter

Battlefield V

While Battlefield V does little new, the collection of tweaks creates a perfected formula making BFV the most explosive, dynamic, and rich multiplayer shooter money can buy today. And it simply looks staggeringly gorgeous on the Xbox One X.

$60 at Amazon

Best campaign shooter

Prey

Prey takes a place as the best campaign shooter on Xbox One for its painstakingly detailed levels, amazing story, thoughtful and rewarding combat, and engrossing atmospherics. Taking place aboard the Talos I space station in an alternative history, you must navigate a space colony infested with aliens that have escaped containment. Is this just a standard alien shooter? or is there a darker conspiracy at play here...? (It's the latter).

$20 at Amazon

Best racer

Forza Horizon 4

Forza Horizon 4 delivers the most cohesive racing experience on the Xbox One. With hundreds of cars and a dynamic British open world, the game amalgamates the finest components of its predecessors into a refined and invigorating package. Putting unparalleled customization and possibility in the hands of the player, Forza Horizon 4 is a perfection of the racing genre.

From $40 at Amazon

Best graphic adventure

Life is Strange

Life is Strange took the world by storm a couple of years back for its dramatic tale of friendship and high-school intrigue finished with a healthy dose of the supernatural. Life is Strange follows a murder conspiracy in a small town, calling on inspiration from the likes of the X-Files and Twin Peaks. It's one of the most moving games available, that everybody should experience.

$20 at Microsoft Store

Best open world

Assassin's Creed Origins

Enhanced at 4K for the Xbox One X, Assassin's Creed: Origins takes the franchise to all-new heights, going even deeper on its RPG layer. Hunt animals, raid tombs, steal treasure, and upgrade your gear, in this absolutely huge open world set in Ancient Egypt. Assassin's Creed: Origins is a return to form for the aging franchise, putting the series back in the top spot for open world gameplay.

$40 at Amazon

Best horror

Resident Evil 7: Biohazard

Resident Evil suffered a decline in recent years, but the seventh installment sent it screaming back to the top of the pile. Resident Evil 7: Biohazard rekindles the magic that made the franchise so great, delivering an explorative adventure that is as terrifying as it is brutally violent. Key hunting, ammo scavenging, and puzzle solving return in this bone-chilling game that easily reclaims the series throne as horror royalty.

$30 at Microsoft

Best for kids

Minecraft

Did you expect anything else?! Minecraft is a phenomenon that led Microsoft to drop billions to secure the franchise back in 2014. Since launch, the game has grown far beyond its humble Java beginnings, spawning several large updates, including cross-platform capabilities. Minecraft is also now helping to teach youngsters to code, making it educational AND fun.

From $20 at Amazon

Best action adventure

Shadow of the Tomb Raider

Shadow of the Tomb Raider is a visually stunning archaeological adventure featuring the iconic Lara Croft, in her most explosive mission yet. Inadvertently triggering a global catastrophe, Lara battles an ancient organization on a quest to abuse mystical artifacts to achieve world domination.

$50 at Amazon

Best survival

The Long Dark

After a long winter in development, The Long Dark has triumphantly emerged from the Game Preview program. The Long Dark is a survival simulator without equal. Playing either in the game's episodic story mode or open world sandbox mode, your task is to manage your thirst, hunger, and the biting Canadian cold. I've had some of my most exciting Xbox moments with The Long Dark and its emergent gameplay systems, and I can't recommend it enough.

$30 at Microsoft

Best puzzler

Hitman 2

After a jaunt with more action-oriented gameplay, the recent Hitman games have doubled down on what the franchise is known for: sprawling stealth puzzles that reward the patient, thoughtful gamer. Hitman 2 takes the premise to all new heights, with huge, complex maps filled with nefarious opportunities to complete your contracts.

$60 at Microsoft

Best co-op

Diablo III

Few games are as quick and easy to get into with friends than Diablo III. While it's a bit old, it's one of the few modern titles that support both split-screen and online co-operative play simultaneously, making it a great game for up to four friends. Diablo III is a gothic adventure game with an emphasis on fast-paced action, loot hunting, and seasonal gameplay content.

$60 at Microsoft

Best strategy and simulation

Surviving Mars

Surviving Mars is a sprawling strategy simulation game set on, you guessed it, Mars. Players must develop a colony on the surface of the Red Planet, managing oxygen levels, funding, food resources, and more, all while avoiding Mars' various hazards. Surviving Mars is a viciously addictive title fans of the genre will love.

$30 at Microsoft

Best platformer

Ori and the Blind Forest

Ori and the Blind Forest is the greatest platformer in an entire generation, and it's available exclusively on Xbox One and Windows 10. Guide the impossibly cute Ori through a gorgeous hand-drawn world complete with extremely challenging platforming and a beautifully woven story.

$30 at Microsoft

Best sports

Rocket League

Rocket League combines high-octane cart racing with physics-based soccer rules to create something truly addictive. Two teams of up to four cars must race to score as many goals as possible in a set time limit, literally driving the ball into the opposing team's goal. Boost, rocket jump and drive on the arena walls — all tactics are valid in Rocket League.

$20 at Microsoft

Best fighting

Killer Instinct

Killer Instinct is a revival of Rare's classic fighter from the 90s. The combo-heavy fighting game enjoys an active player base with several large seasonal updates. If you're an Xbox One owner into fighting games, you probably own this game already. It's free to play, with optional character purchases.

From $0 at Microsoft

Best of the best

These are our picks for the best Xbox One games by genre today, and we'll be sure to update it in the future when more titles hit store shelves.

Red Dead Redemption 2 was almost certain to take the crown as the best Xbox One game when it launched in the Fall of 2018, and it did so confidently. It may be a while before anything beats it, too. If you pick up one game on this list, make it that one.

This post may contain affiliate links. See our disclosure policy for more details.