Xbox Game Pass August 2023: another amazing month with award-winning Celeste

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Indie darling Celeste kicks off Xbox Game Pass
Indie darling Celeste kicks off Xbox Game Pass' August 2023 offering (Image: Maddy Makes Games)

Microsoft has announced the first batch of Xbox Game Pass games for August 2023, including some beloved indie titles.

Xbox Game Pass subscribers are getting some true hidden gems this month with some of the greatest indie titles ever hitting the service. Xbox Game Pass' August 2023 offering kicks off with Celeste which launches today for Xbox, PC, and cloud. Celeste tells the story of a young woman named Madeline who seeks to conquer British Columbia's Mount Celeste. The game first launched back in 2018 to universal acclaim and has the distinction of being the first indie game to ever be nominated for Game of the Year at The Game Awards (picking up awards for Best Independent Game and Games for Impact at that year's show).

Celeste is a platformer in the aptly titled 'masocore' genre popularised by games like Super Meat Boy and I Wanna Be the Guy. The hard-as-nails gameplay leads to some true satisfaction when you finally conquer one of the platforming challenges. The game also boasts in-depth accessibility features for those who want to experience the games fantastic story and soundtrack without having to worry about the gameplay.

Funnily enough another mountain-scaling adventure launches on August 3 as A Short Hike releases onto Xbox Game Pass. You play as an anthropomorphic bird trying to reach the top of a mountain to get phone signal. Unlike Celeste which tests your platforming skills, A Short Hike is a far more leisurely affair, a perfect entry into the ever-growing list of comfy games.

Xbox Game Pass August 2023 free games

The following is the full list of Xbox Game Pass August 2023 free games as posted by Microsoft on the Xbox Wire :

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  • Celeste – available now (console, PC, cloud)
  • A Short Hike – August 3 (console, PC, cloud)
  • Broforce Forever – August 8 (console, PC, cloud)
  • Limbo – August 9 (console, PC, cloud)
  • Airborne Kingdom – August 10 (console, PC, cloud)
  • Everspace 2 – August 15 (Xbox Series X|S, cloud) available now on PC

These titles will be on the service for the foreseeable future. The second wave of Xbox Game Pass titles will likely be announced around the time the final game of this batch releases – which is Everspace 2 on August 15 this month.

Games leaving Xbox Game Pass in August 2023

The following games have been announced to leave Xbox Game Pass on August 15:

  • Death Stranding (PC)

  • Edge of Eternity (console, PC, cloud)

  • Midnight Fight Express (console, PC, cloud)

  • Total War: Warhammer III (PC)

These titles will be available at a discount of at least 20% ahead of them leaving on Tuesday, August 15. Another batch of titles will be leaving Xbox Game Pass at the end of the month, these will be announced alongside the second wave of titles.

Scott McCrae

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