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Mechanical Challenge Games on Xbox Series X|S

Games offer us challenges on many levels. When someone plays a game too much it’s easy to think they are taking an easy route to something entertaining, like junk food. But video games are generally hard work. It takes time to understand their systems, mechanics, objectives and worlds.

There are a small group of games that hone this challenge down to the mechanics of moving around the environment. Whereas many games simplify getting around, these games make the complexity and depth of their movement systems part of the joy of playing them.

Rather than relying on the stats of your character or player, you have to execute the moves yourself with timing proficiency and instinct. Rather than offering assistance, these games leave you to it. Whether you rise through the league tables, or just improve compared to your family, the satisfaction or getting to grips with something so monumentally challenging is really satisfying.

This might be understanding how the propulsion of your car lets you take to the air and hit a perfect shot in Rocket League. Or, perhaps, it’s using the limited running and jumping slightly better than other players to get a win in Fall Guys. Maybe it’s learning the perfect combination of angles and trajectories in Videoball. Or it could be learning the complex move lists in a game like Street Fighter.

These games all have in common, a complex control system that can be put to use in imaginative and creative ways to get the edge over your opponents.

This list includes 33 games from the last 22 years, with 250 likes. They come from a range of different genres and play-styles and are all good games if you want to combine dexterity and instincts.

DetailsPlatform Details

PEGI Ratings: PEGI 3 to PEGI 18
ESRB Ratings: ESRB EVERYONE to ESRB MATURE 17+
Australian Ratings: G to R 18+
Genres: Action, Adventure, Creative, Fighting, Narrative, Open World, Physically Active, Platform, Puzzle, Race, Role-Play, Shooting, Simulation, Sports, Stealth, Strategy and Traversal
Era: 2000 - 2022
Total Games: 33
Total Likes: 250
 

 

Elden Ring

Release Date: 25/02/2022

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 14+ year-olds

Elden Ring is a role-play game set in a fictional world created by fantasy novelist George R. R. Martin, with a focus on combat similar to Demon's Souls and an open world with real time and weather like Zelda Breath of the Wild.

Skyblock

Release Date: 01/01/2011, updated in 2020

Platforms: Android, Mac, PC, PS4, Switch, Wii U, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and iOS

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Skyblock is a game played on Minecraft servers where you start on a bare island floating in the sky and must gather resources to thrive and reach other players. It's the Minecraft equivalent to being washed up on a desert island and is hugely popular....

Descenders

Release Date: 08/05/2019, updated in 2020

Platforms: Android, Mac, PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and iOS

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Descenders is a downhill mountain biking game with a focus on skill. In each downhill run, your goal is to score as many points as possible by completing skill based challenges and executing as many tricks and flips as you can, all while you try to...

Hitman (Series)

Release Date: 01/01/2000, updated in 2021

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, PS5, Stadia, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Hitman 3 is a stealth game where you take on assassination missions and then figure out how to execute them. The dynamic situations you enter unfold as you play and you can try different approaches.

Forza Horizon 5 (Series)

Release Date: 05/11/2021

Platforms: PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Forza Horizon 5 is a fast-paced racing game where you drive all manner of different vehicles in races and across the vast open landscape. Building on Forza Horizon 4, this fifth entry to the series is set in Mexico,...

Knockout City

Release Date: 21/05/2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Knockout City is a futuristic sports game where rival crews take on dodgeball style battles. It combines arena battles with projectile combat. With the focus on the ball as much as the other players, this brings more strategy and a great emphasis on...

MultiVersus

Release Date: 26/07/2022

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

MultiVersus is a fighting game like Smash Brothers where you team up with or against other players. The novelty is this teamwork and the deep catalogue of characters you can fight with. Batman, Shaggy from Scooby Do, Superman, Bugs Bunny and so on.

Death's Door

Release Date: 20/07/2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Death's Door is a noir adventure game where you play a crow whose job it is to reap the souls of the dead. When one goes missing you must fight, run and jump through a fantasy world to get it back. It's a simple combat game at heart, but the unusual...

Super Monkey Ball (Series)

Release Date: 23/06/2001, updated in 2021

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, Android, DS, PS Vita, PS4, PS5, Switch, Wii, Xbox, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and iOS

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Super Monkey Ball is a rolling and balancing game where you tilt platforms to control the path of a hamster ball containing a monkey. The peculiar premise is matched with accurate challenging gameplay and some great multiplayer modes (like Monkey...

Doom Eternal

Release Date: 20/03/2020

Platforms: PS4, Stadia, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Doom is a shooting game with a focus on movement and close-quarter combat in tightly designed arenas. Originally released in 1993, it was one of the first 3D shooting games to be made and spawned numerous sequels, novels, comic books, board games, and...

Lawn Mowing Simulator

Release Date: 10/08/2021

Platforms: PC, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Lawn Mowing Simulator is an adventure game where you ride an authentic and expansive roster of lawnmowers. The novelty is a combination of absolute control over lawn care and weed eradication. This is extended beyond a brief distraction by the inclusion...

Chrono Sword

Release Date: Coming soon

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Chrono Sword is an adventure game about Aenor, a time traveller attempting to prevent the death of her loved ones. You learn technical combat, explore the world, switch timelines and fight off enemies to discover the secrets of the past.

Lemnis Gate

Release Date: 28/09/2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Lemnis Gate is a combat game that combines turn-taking with real-time shooting. At the start of the battle, you pick one of your seven operatives for the first 25 second round. The game then rewinds to the start and you go again with your second...

Sniper Elite 5 (Series)

Release Date: 26/05/2022

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Sniper Elite 5 is the latest game in the shooting simulation series that focuses on tactical third-person combat, advanced gun physics, traversal and an enhanced slow motion kill camera. With realistic environments and real-world locations, customise...

Stonefly

Release Date: 02/06/2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Stonefly is a tranquil adventure game where you play the pilot of insect-like mechanical craft. Tiny and living in an outsized world, you use your vehicle to harness the wind and explore the wilderness. As you meet inhabitants, collect resources and...

Back 4 Blood

Release Date: 12/10/2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Back 4 Blood is a multiplayer shooting game where a team of four players work together to survive zombie-infested areas.

Replaced

Release Date: Coming soon

Platforms: PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Replaced is a platform game set in a grim dystopian alternate 1980s America. You play as an Artificial Intelligence trapped inside a human wanting to escape.

Wreckfest

Release Date: 14/06/2018, updated in 2019

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Wreckfest is a racing game where you aim to destroy other people's cars. It focuses on demolition modes with classic American muscle cars and other unusual vehicles. Rather than racing, this is a physical challenge with cars crammed onto a small track,...

Ghostrunner

Release Date: 27/10/2020, updated in 2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Ghostrunner is a challenging, fast-paced fighting game with a puzzle solving element. Played from a first-person perspective, you navigate the world using parkour-like skills, running on walls, sliding through gaps or jumping and swinging over them....

Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl

Release Date: 05/10/2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl is a fighting game similar to Super Smash Bros. The novelty comes not only from its roster of Nickelodeon characters, but also from its fast-paced and intense rounds, rewarding skill...

OlliOlli World (Series)

Release Date: 08/02/2022, updated in 2022

Platforms: PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

OlliOlli World is a skateboarding game where you roll, jump and trick your way around the vibrant world of Radlandia. It's hard to start, but once it clicks the controls are designed to let you flow through different moves. You meet colourful characters...

Call of Duty: Vanguard (Series)

Release Date: 05/11/2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Call of Duty: Vanguard is a shooting game set during end of the World War II. It's the eighteenth instalment in the Call of Duty series.

Chivalry II

Release Date: 08/06/2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Chivalry 2 is an online sword fighting game that recreates epic medieval movie battles. It's the sequel to Chivalry: Medieval Warfare and thrusts you first-hand into huge battles where you must survive clashing swords, storms of flaming arrows and...

Redfall

Release Date: Coming soon

Platforms: Xbox Series X|S

Redfall is an open-world team shooting game set in a Massachusetts town under siege by a legion of vampires. You work with a handful of survivors to purge the town. It's a cooperative experience with diverse characters and wide-ranging ways to approach...

Tails of Iron

Release Date: 17/09/2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Tails of Iron is a role-playing adventure game with a focus on brutal combat. You play Redgi, heir to the Rat Throne, who must restore your broken Kingdom by banishing the merciless Frog Clan. It's a hand-drawn adventure equally endearing and...

Hell Let Loose

Release Date: 27/07/2021, updated in 2021

Platforms: PC, PS5 and Xbox Series X|S

Hell Let Loose is a tactical shooting game set during the battles of the Western and Eastern Fronts of World War 2. It focuses on the structure of warfare with large numbers of troops through chain of command communication. You must work with other...

Naraka: Bladepoint

Release Date: 11/08/2021

Platforms: PC and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Nakara: Bladepoint is an online fighting game where 60 players take on martial arts weapons and moves to be the last person standing. It takes the battle royale game in a sword battling direction where heroes can pull off gravity defying mobility, use...

Treasures of the Aegean

Release Date: 11/11/2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Treasures of the Aegean is a Tin Tin-style tomb raiding adventure game. You are Marie Taylor and unveil the secrets of a forgotten kingdom trapped in an endless time loop. To do this, in 15 minute runs you explore a hand-drawn world to recover valuable...

Turbo Golf Racing

Release Date: 04/08/2022

Platforms: PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Turbo Golf Racing is an online car game where you race to hit an oversized golf ball into a hole at the end of each circuit. Your car is rocket powered and needs to be manoeuvred to hit the ball through hoops and boosts to get to the finishing hole...

Gonner (Series)

Release Date: 22/10/2020

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Gonner 2 is a running and jumping game where you defend yourself by shooting enemies in a chaotic procedural environment as a small character called Ikk. You'll need a large amount of patience as you die a lot. To progress you need to hone your shooting...

Loot River

Release Date: 03/05/2022

Platforms: PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Loot River is a puzzle fighting game where you explore labyrinths armed with the power of a relic that can shift the ground. This combines the combat with a Tetris-like tile shifting that alters the layout of each room to your advantage.

SpiderHeck

Release Date: 22/09/2022

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

SpiderHeck is a chaotic fighting game where a weaponised spider tries to take down opponents. You sling webs, shoot and slash at enemies, while frantically jumping about the dangerous arenas to land the decisive blow for victory. It's a strange concept,...

Stick Fight: The Game

Release Date: 28/09/2017, updated in 2021

Platforms: Android, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and iOS

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Stick Fight is a vicious fighting game depicted with stick men. You play by controlling small coloured stick men, who mimic real world physics and bodily movement. To win you need to use the physics-based movement to land punches, kicks and use weapons...

Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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