It's too bad High on Life came out on December 12, which is just right after The Game Awards ended. Otherwise, Geoff Keighley's yearly event might have to make room for one little. The unassuming but incredibly comedic shooter is one of the most popular games in the world right now, especially on the Xbox Game Pass. As a matter of fact, High on Life has beaten several games on the subscription service in terms of popularity, including the best-selling video game of all time, Minecraft.
High on Life isn't the biggest critical hit this year as critics lambasted the title, but Squanch didn't let a rough start stop its latest project from going viral. As soon as the game came out, the studio worked hard on fixing the launch issues and it's since become a hit. A lot of people are giving High on Life and its Rick and Morty-like humor a go right now, as we can see in the "Most Popular" list of Game Pass games on the official Xbox website.
High on Life's success is encouraging for Squanch Games and Justin Roiland. The co-creator of the Rick and Morty animated series can give himself a pat on the back for coming up with a hit before the year ends.
Unfortunately, High on Life becoming the most popular game on the Game Pass is a back-handed achievement. Unlike Sony, which rolled out GOTY-nominee, God of War: Ragnarok, and Nintendo with Pokemon Scarlet and Violet, the Xbox didn't have a big exclusive for the holiday season. In fact, the only new game for the Xbox and PC by a first-party Microsoft studio to come out this year is Pentiment by Obsidian. Although if we're being technical, Arkane Studios' Xbox port of Deathloop came out earlier this year as well.
Either way, High on Life's success on the Game Pass highlights a problem that Microsoft is, thankfully, well aware of.
For now, we can celebrate the achievement of High on Life and Squanch Games.
Speaking of the Game Pass, Microsoft is reportedly working on a cheaper version of Game Pass. We're hoping it'll be out sometime early next year. As for the next big Xbox exclusive, Microsoft will launch Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition on January 31. We'll likely find out when Starfield and Redfall will be coming out by then as well. The release dates for the said games might be revealed at the rumored event by Microsoft early next year.