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Are Xbox Series S Games Free? The Ultimate Guide

Are Xbox Series S games free?

No, Xbox Series S games are not free. You need to purchase games for the Xbox Series S, just like any other gaming console. However, there are a few ways to get free games or discounts on the Xbox Series S:

  • Xbox Game Pass – This subscription service gives you access to over 100 free downloadable games for a monthly fee. It‘s one of the best deals in gaming right now.
  • Free-to-play games – There are some free-to-play games like Fortnite that you can download and play for free on the Xbox Series S.
  • Games with Gold – Xbox Live Gold members get up to 4 free games to download and keep each month.
  • Discounts – Xbox frequently runs sales on digital game downloads, allowing you to get popular games at a discount.
  • So while you can‘t get every Xbox Series S game for free, there are definitely great options to help you save money and build up a game library without paying full price for every title.

    Overview of Xbox Series S and Game Prices

    The Xbox Series S, which launched in November 2020, is Microsoft‘s entry-level next-generation console. Priced at just $299, the Xbox Series S is aimed at gamers who want to experience the benefits of the new Xbox but don‘t require ultra high-end specs.

    The Xbox Series S is an all-digital console, which means it does not have a disc drive. All games must be purchased digitally and downloaded directly to the console‘s SSD storage. This digital-only design allows Microsoft to offer the Series S at a budget-friendly price point compared to the more powerful Xbox Series X, which costs $499 with a disc drive included.

    Here is an overview of Xbox Series S game prices from the Microsoft Store:

  • New releases – $59.99
  • Older catalog titles – $9.99 to $49.99
  • Indie games – Typically $9.99 to $19.99
  • Xbox Game Pass – $9.99 per month for unlimited access to over 100 games
  • Compared to other consoles, these prices are fairly standard. New PlayStation and Nintendo Switch games also cost $59.99 at launch. However, Xbox gamers have some money-saving advantages:

  • Frequent sales – Xbox digital games see discounts of up to 50-75% off every few weeks.
  • Backward compatibility – Xbox Series S can play thousands of Xbox One, Xbox 360 and original Xbox games. You likely already own some of these in your gaming library.
  • Game Pass – Xbox‘s Netflix-style subscription service lets you download and play over 100 games for one flat monthly fee.
  • Between sales, backward compatibility, and Game Pass, you can build up a great Xbox Series S game library without having to pay full price for most of your games.

    Strategies for Getting Cheap or Free Xbox Series S Games

    While the Xbox Series S is an affordably priced console, software costs can still add up quickly at $60 per new release title. Here are some tips and strategies for getting new games at the lowest prices or even free:

    Sign Up for Xbox Game Pass

    An Xbox Game Pass membership should be the first stop for any Series S owner looking to maximize their gaming budget. For $9.99 per month, you get unlimited access to over 100 Xbox games to download and play as much as you want. The library includes big Xbox exclusives like Halo and Gears of War as well as major third party titles from Ubisoft, EA, and more.

    Microsoft frequently adds new games to Game Pass on their release date, so you can play brand new titles the day they launch for no additional cost. Between the flat monthly fee and the expanding games catalog, Game Pass provides unbeatable value compared to buying games individually at full price.

    Claim Free Games with Gold Monthly

    Xbox Live Gold is required for online multiplayer gaming on Xbox, but this $9.99 monthly subscription also gives you access to free games every month. Typically you can claim 2 Xbox One games and 2 Xbox 360 games each month to keep permanently.

    While the Games with Gold freebies aren‘t always major titles, you can still gradually build up your game library by claiming the free games each month. Over time this nets you dozens of games for no additional cost.

    Take Advantage of Countless Sales

    One benefit of the Xbox Series S all-digital ecosystem is that digital game downloads go on sale extremely frequently. Major seasonal sales (like summer and holiday sales) offer discounts up to 50-75% off hundreds of games. But Xbox also runs surprise weeklong or weekend sales on random game titles nearly every week of the year.

    By adding Xbox games to a wishlist, you can be notified when they receive a discount. This allows savvy shoppers to stock up on great games for just a fraction of their original prices. It‘s common to see games discounted to $5-10 that were originally $40 or more.

    Buy and Resell Used Physical Copies

    Since the Xbox Series S doesn‘t have a disc drive, you can‘t buy used physical games to directly insert and play. However, you can buy a used disc, install the game to the console, then resell the disc afterwards since it won‘t be needed after installation.

    Popular resell sites like eBay and Craigslist often have lightly used Xbox One games for cheap prices. Buying the used disc to install a digital copy, then reselling the disc again, can significantly cut down costs on some titles. Just be sure to avoid damaged discs.

    Share Games with Friends

    On Xbox consoles, any user can install and play games that were purchased digitally by any other user on that device set as their Home Xbox. With a trustworthy friend or family member, you could essentially split the cost of each game purchase and both install and play the shared games freely on your own profiles.

    While definitely dependent on your relationships with other gamers, sharing digital game libraries could potentially double your access to games for the same investment. Just be sure to only share among people you truly trust.

    The Verdict: How to Build a Huge Xbox Library on a Budget

    Between the all-digital design and various discounts programs, the Xbox Series S offers plenty of budget-friendly avenues to get the most gaming value. Combining the strategies outlined above makes it possible to build a massive 200+ game Xbox library while only paying a fraction of the supposed $12,000+ cost if purchasing each at full price.

    Game Pass alone nets you 100+ games for the cost of just one new game purchase per year. Sales let you stock up on countless titles for under $10 each. And Free Games with Gold deliver freebies to claim each month just for maintaining an online gaming membership you likely already have.

    While the Xbox Series S library consists entirely of digital games, the many discounts and subscription programs reward savvy gamers who take advantage of these options. Those willing to try varied avenues like Game Pass, frequent sales, used disc installs, and shared libraries can enjoy an endless supply of games for minimal ongoing investment.

    The Xbox Series S turns out to be a surprisingly good value for gamers when you strategically use all the tools Xbox provides to minimize costs. Far from having to pay full price for every title, thrifty gamers can now build huge digital libraries at bargain bin prices.