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5 Essential Third-Person Shooters on Xbox Game Pass

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It's fair to say that, next to the generous selection of indie platformers, shooters tend to make up the bulk of the Game Pass library. Come 2023, and that catalog will more than likely branch out to include a whole heap of Call of Duty games, thanks to Microsoft's recent acquisition of Activision Blizzard. But that's looking ahead, and not in the here and now.

It's January, meaning we've got another solid year of first-class video game releases and day one exclusives. For Game Pass subscribers, well, there's still quite the lofty amount of great games that occupy the platform that can still be enjoyed in the meantime. But what third-person shooters are currently seeking a new home on your console? Well, here's what we would recommend playing this month.

5. Gears 5: GoTY Edition

Gears 5 - Official Campaign Story Trailer | Gamescom 2019

Gears of War has been one of Microsoft's highest-grossing franchises for well over a decade. Ever since its induction into the Xbox 360 marketplace, its timeline has only continued to evolve, and its gameplay has only blossomed with even more engrossing tales to tell. Gears 5, although no longer following the original trio, tells just as much of a story as its predecessors, and its open-world, despite being on a much smaller scale compared to most modern open-world entries, is perhaps one of the greatest Epic has ever developed.

Gears 5 is a continuation of the Gears 4 story arc, with CoG trio Kait Diaz, JD Fenix, and Del Walker once again playing the leading roles. After uncovering her family connection to the Locust Queen, Myrrah, Kait is led on a bullet-riddled journey on a hunt to discover the origins of the infamous Locust faction and how she ties in with its legacy.


4. Sniper Elite 4

Sniper Elite 4 - Launch Trailer

If you're wanting to feel the wrath of a bullet whistle through the air and pierce the skull of a Nazi commander, then you'll be glad to know that Sniper Elite 4 offers that exact experience. Like, every fifteen seconds, actually. Thanks to its legendary bullet cam that gives you the chance to witness a round travel at overwhelming speeds, you too can pull off some of the most stylish executions known to the gaming world.

Sniper Elite 4 puts you in the boots of Karl Fairburne, a veteran sniper with an ear for up and coming Nazi schemes that circulate the globe. After being deployed to war-torn Italy, Fairburne is tasked with uncovering a new Nazi weapon that threatens the land and its surrounding regions. In order to clasp the knowledge and gain the upper hand, the veteran must overcome the viscous hold that occupies the country.


3. State of Decay 2

STATE OF DECAY 2 Trailer (E3 2016)

On the surface, State of Decay 2 is more of an exploration game than it is a shooter game. It asks that you spend more time scrubbing through abandoned buildings in search of resources than wading through infinite waves of zombies for the fun of it. But for the sake of the list, it is worth slotting this one under the third-person shooter domain.

State of Decay 2 focuses on a non-linear gameplay structure to help sway the story towards its natural conclusion. What you do in the post-apocalyptic world is entirely up to you, and in no way shape or form does anything have to be done in a particular way. Build a farm, grow a community, or simply isolate in a remote location with nothing but your conscience to keep you company. At the end of the day, it doesn't matter, so long as you remember to, you know, stay alive.


2. Quantum Break

Quantum Break Gameplay Trailer - New Quantum Break Trailer Gamescom 2015

Quantum Break did a spectacular job at filling its core with game-changing innovations. From its anthology of fast-paced gameplay segments to its interactive movie that tied itself to the choices you, the player, made at certain milestones in the game — Quantum Break had the whole package. Sadly, it was a game that was also slept on, no thanks to Dark Souls 3 and Uncharted 4: A Thief's End, two other fanatic shooters, paving their ways to the market around the same time.

Quantum Break followed the story of Jack Joyce, a rebel without a cause that inherits the power to control time. However, with an old friend looming over the hopes of letting time halt altogether, Joyce must master his new powers if he is to stop the world from grinding to an eerie halt. The clock is ticking, and the ripples in time are becoming more frequent. The question is: will you have time to stop the world from ending, as well as the power to confront your childhood friend to settle matters once and for all?


1. Outriders

Outriders - Official Reveal Trailer

If you're looking to immerse yourself in the abundance of multilayer titles Game Pass employs, then you're going to want to set up shop with Outriders — especially if you're an Unlimited subscriber. And even if playing with others isn't exactly your thing, you can still play the game solo, though you will miss out on some of its core functions.

Outriders is an online-only first-person shooter role-playing game, putting most of its emphasis on the shooter part. As one of the few remaining Outriders on the war-torn planet of Enoch, you're tasked with ridding the distant world of its threat in order to colonize it. The bottom line: make the planet worth fighting for, no matter the cost.

So, what's your take? Do you agree with our five? What third-person shooters would you put on this list? Let us know over on our socials here or down in the comments below.


Had enough of shooters? Looking for more content? You could always take a look at one of these lists:

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Jord is acting Team Leader at If he isn't blabbering on in his daily listicles, then he's probably out writing fantasy novels or scraping Game Pass of all its slept on indies.