Rally racing, anime fighting, and Castlevania’s spiritual successor highlight the new games available to Xbox Game Pass subscribers in the last two weeks of September.
Starting tomorrow, Sept. 19, Game Pass’ library adds Jump Force, in which just about every famous manga hero joins up with stylized created fighters to fend off a pan-dimensional crisis threatening all your favorite anime canons. Jump Force, from Spike Chunsoft and Bandai Namco, launched back in February; our review found the colorful, creative world and characters that Jump Force brought together wasn’t really supported by the story or the fighting mechanisms.
On Thursday, Sept. 26, Dirt Rally 2.0, Lego Worlds, and Bad North join the club. Bad North is a indie strategy title in which players have to defend their territory from a pillaging Viking horde. Bad North premiered on Nintendo Switch last August, and we found it to be “the chillest RTS” for the inviting way it presented what is often a very dense genre.
Dirt Rally 2.0 is a deep but challenging rally racing sim from a studio that’s done it well for years, Codemasters. We reviewed it on a PlayStation 4 but found it very enjoyable and accessible on a gamepad, with the career’s strategy layer making it the preferred mode of play.
Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night is the newest of the four games, launching in mid-June. Made by long-time Castlevania producer Koji Igarashi, it was crowdfunded on Kickstarter in 2015 with a pitch promising to bring all the features fans of that series loved. It was originally slated for a 2017 release.
Finally, Lego Worlds is that toy culture’s take on a Minecraft sandbox experience, which makes it interesting that Xbox would give space to a competitor. Lego Worlds launched in 2017; reviews were middling then, and we haven’t heard much from it since.
Xbox Game Pass’ big release for September was Gears 5, a day-and-date launch for both PC and Xbox One subscribers on Sept. 10. Xbox Game Pass is $9.99 a month, and is $14.99 a month for those who combine it with Xbox Live Gold (which also gets the new Game Pass for PC catalog).