Xbox Game Pass Has a Big Week Ahead of It

Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass subscription service has been on a roll lately, constantly offering new games for subscribers to check out and making big surprise announcements about day one titles. And it seems as though Xbox Game Pass’ momentum will continue through December, as this coming week is set to be a particularly important one for the service.

Here is why next week is going to be a big one for Xbox Game Pass subscribers.

Xbox Game Pass New Games This Week


among us crewmates xbox series x console
  • Aliens: Fireteam Elite (Cloud/Console/PC) – December 14
  • Among Us (Console) – December 14
  • The Gunk (Cloud/Console/PC) – December 16

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There are two days this coming week that will see new titles added to the Xbox Game Pass subscription service. The first day is Tuesday, December 14, which will see the addition of a co-op game that released just a few months ago, as well as a day one Xbox Game Pass game.

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Aliens: Fireteam Elite is coming to Xbox Game Pass on December 14, giving subscribers the chance to check out the co-op shooter based on the popular science-fiction franchise. Aliens: Fireteam Elite didn’t exactly become a huge hit at the time of its original release, but Xbox Game Pass could be just what it needs to get a second lease on life. It just so happens that the Xbox Game Pass debut of Aliens: Fireteam Elite coincides with the game’s Season 2 as well.


Aliens: Fireteam Elite Season 2 will see the debut of the brand new Point Defense mode, not to mention new cosmetic items, weapons, attachments, unlockable Challenge Cards, and quality of life improvements like lifetime stats. The paid Nostromo Salvage Pack DLC is releasing the same day, and those willing to spend $9.99 will get access to a bunch of other exclusive items as well. The hope is likely that Aliens: Fireteam Elite‘s Xbox Game Pass availability will translate to sales for the paid DLC and the like, so it will be interesting to see if the new content is enough to earn new fans.


Aliens Fireteam Elite title art

The other game coming to Xbox Game Pass on December 14 is the day one Xbox Game Pass game Among Us. The popular social deduction game has been available on other platforms for years, but it’s just now making its Xbox debut. The Xbox version of Among Us being available on Xbox Game Pass at launch should be huge for the game’s reach, and should ensure that there is a large community for it right off the bat. It could be just the shot in the arm that Among Us needs to keep fans interested in the base game while they wait for more content and the newly-revealed Among Us VR game.

Later in the week will bring another day one release for Xbox Game Pass subscribers to check out. Thursday, December 16 will see the Xbox Game Pass debut of The Gunk, a third-person action-adventure game where players explore a sci-fi world and rid it of a toxic substance. The Gunk is a visually-impressive game based on what’s been shown of it so far, and it having a native Xbox Series X version shouldn’t hurt either.

Xbox Game Pass New Games for December 2021

The Gunk is the last new Xbox Game Pass game that has been definitively confirmed to be coming to the service in December 2021, but it’s likely that Microsoft has a second batch of titles waiting in the wings. Typically, the way Microsoft reveals its new Xbox Game Pass games is in two phases. First it reveals the Xbox Game Pass games coming in the first 15 days of the month, and then after those games are all out, it pulls the curtain back on the new games coming in the second half of the month.

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With it being the holidays, it’s possible that there won’t be many new Xbox Game Pass games coming in the second half of December, but that remains to be seen. Until Microsoft itself decides to reveal the rest of the new Xbox Game Pass for December 2021, all subscribers can do is speculate. In any case, it’s likely (though not confirmed) that the announcement will come at some point next week, so that’s another reason for Xbox Game Pass subscribers to get excited.

Xbox Game Pass Games Leaving December 2021


the dark pictures man of medna review
  • Beholder – December 15
  • The Dark Pictures: Man of Medan – December 15
  • Guacamelee! 2December 15
  • Wilmot’s Warehouse – December 15
  • Unto The End – December 15
  • Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair – December 15

Next week is going to be a big one for Xbox Game Pass subscribers because of the new games that are being added and the possibility of even more being confirmed, but it’s also a big week for a negative reason as well. Unfortunately, next week will see the removal of some great Xbox Game Pass games come December 15, with Microsoft set to remove six more games from the service not long after it removed Destiny 2 and its expansions.

The removal of Destiny 2 and its expansions was a big blow to Xbox Game Pass, but other notable games are set to get the boot on Wednesday, December 15. This includes co-op horror game The Dark Pictures: Man of Medan, developed by Until Dawn studio Supermassive Games. The Dark Pictures: Man of Medan is like a playable horror movie where players are assigned to specific characters and the choices they make determine the course of the story, not to mention who lives and who dies.

Xbox Game Pass subscribers may also want to check out Guacamelee 2 while they still can. The sequel to the classic Metroidvania game Guacamelee, Guacamelee 2 puts a big focus on co-op while dialing up the action, challenge, and pro wrestling references. It’s one of the most critically-acclaimed games available on Xbox Game Pass and so it’s sad to see that it will soon be removed from the service.


yooka laylee and the impossible lair box art

Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair is also going to be removed on December 15. A spin-off of the 3D platformer game Yooka-Laylee by Playtonic Games, Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair is a side-scrolling game that has more in common with Donkey Kong Country than Yooka-Laylee‘s inspiration Banjo-Kazooie. It earned much stronger reviews than its predecessor, and it’s something that fans of the platforming genre may want to look into while it’s still available through the Xbox Game Pass subscription service.

It will be a sad day when these games are removed from Xbox Game Pass on December 15, and it’s likely that the week will bring even more big but bad news for subscribers. Just like the coming week will most likely shine a spotlight on the rest of the games coming to Xbox Game Pass in December 2021, it will likely reveal the rest of the games that are getting removed as well. Similarly to how it handles new games coming to the service, Microsoft likes to reveal the games leaving Xbox Game Pass in two batches. The first set are revealed at the beginning of the month and then removed on the 15th. The second set are typically revealed around the 15th and then removed on the last day of the month.


There’s been no indication that December 2021 will be an exception to that rule, so Xbox Game Pass subscribers should brace themselves for the likely possibility that even more games will be getting removed come December 31. What exactly those games will be is anyone’s guess, but it’s likely that an announcement will come at some point this week.

This coming week will likely be the last really big week for Xbox Game Pass this year, unless Microsoft has some surprises in store. After that, all eyes will be on 2022 and what the coming new year will have in store for Game Pass. 2021 was a banner year for Xbox Game Pass, though, so it will be interesting to see if next year is able to top it at all.


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