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5 Best Survival Games for Xbox One to Try

Best Survival Games for Xbox One

Survival games have become incredibly popular in recent years. The genre tasks players with surviving harsh environments and lethal scenarios by scavenging, crafting, and skillful resource management. These tense, high-stakes games provide some of the most engaging and rewarding gameplay experiences.

This article will cover the top survival games available for Xbox One.

Best Survival Games for Xbox One

Some fantastic survival games are available for Xbox One that deserve to be in any survivalist’s library. Here are 5 of the best:

  1. Subnautica
  2. The Long Dark
  3. ARK: Survival Evolved
  4. 7 Days to Die
  5. The Forest

1. Subnautica

Subnautica is one of the most unique and immersive survival games ever made. After your spaceship crash lands in an ocean on an alien planet, you must survive by exploring the breathtaking underwater environments. As you dive deeper beneath the waves, you uncover more of the mysterious planet.

You’ll need to find resources to craft equipment to reach greater depths. Building submersible vehicles also helps you explore farther and transport materials.

Since everything from food, water, and oxygen is scarce, you must carefully balance your health as you push into deeper and more dangerous territories. The alien sea creatures you encounter range from fascinating to downright terrifying. The world feels alive and lived-in, full of wonder and danger around every corner.

Dedicated players can spend 50+ hours uncovering Subnautica’s secrets while developing the perfect underwater base. With its fantastic world-building and survival crafting loop, Subnautica is an absolute must-play. Now, the latest Subnautica 3 is coming somewhere soon.


2. The Long Dark

For a grittier survival experience, look no further than The Long Dark. After a geomagnetic disaster plunges the world into frigid darkness, you must battle the elements in a frozen wilderness. Simply stepping outside becomes dangerous with its chilling winds, low visibility, and deadly wildlife. Resources like food, firewood, clothing, and shelter become lifelines.

The Long Dark emphasizes realistic survival simulation mechanics like monitoring body temperature, staving off frostbite, avoiding hypothermia by starting fires or retreating indoors, and dressing appropriately for harsh conditions.

The story mode provides tense episodic challenges, while the sandbox mode lets you customize the experience and see how long you can endure in the unforgiving wilds. The Long Dark is the perfect high-stakes survival challenge for seasoned survivalists looking to test their skills against uncompromising odds.

The Long Dark
The Long Dark

3. ARK: Survival Evolved

Look no further than ARK: Survival Evolved for an action-packed survival adventure. Unlike most survival games, ARK sets players loose in immense Jurassic landscapes populated by dinosaurs and other prehistoric creatures. You start off wielding just your wits and fists against the harsh wilderness.

Eventually, you assemble Stone Age tools and weapons to hunt and defend yourself. The real fun begins when you can tame and ride your dinosaurs.

Suddenly, you can harness the power of these majestic beasts, using them as both transportation and devastating weapons. As you progress, the tools, structures, and weapons become more advanced until you wield high-tech firearms and build futuristic bases.

Besides the comprehensive crafting and building system, ARK offers extensive modding and multiplayer capabilities. ARK is tailor-made for you if you want to rule a truly primeval landscape astride a T-Rex alongside your friends.

ARK: Survival Evolved
ARK: Survival Evolved

4. 7 Days to Die

7 Days to Die drops players into a hellish zombie apocalypse where the goal is to survive for as long as possible against the relentless hordes of undead. During the day, you scavenge through procedurally generated cities to gather vital supplies like food, water, weapons, and materials to fortify your shelter.

When night falls, zombies emerge and relentlessly hunt you down, requiring you to seek refuge in your secured stronghold quickly. With each passing day, more zombies spawn and grow ever stronger, meaning you must continually expand and reinforce your defenses.

The incredibly robust crafting system allows you to build intricate bases and traps while crafting hundreds of weapons and items. With its blend of horror, survival, and action themes, 7 Days to Die is a pulse-pounding good time.

7 Days to Die
7 Days to Die

5. The Forest

The Forest offers a terrifying vision of survival horror by stranding you in a lush forest filled with mutated cannibalistic mutants. During the day, you must carefully explore and scavenge the network of creepy caves and abandoned structures scattered throughout the woods. At night, the cannibal tribes emerge, requiring you to sprint back to the sanctity of your protected cabin.

A startlingly advanced AI system means the cannibals will learn your patterns and become increasingly adept at hunting you. The Forest features a full crafting system and base building mechanics that let you turn your cabin into an impenetrable fortress filled with custom defenses to keep the cannibals at bay.

The atmosphere is dripping with dread and constantly keeps you on edge. This intense cat-and-mouse survival experience will get your heart racing.

The Forest
The Forest

What is a Survival Game?

Survival games thrust players into dangerous worlds and force them to gather resources, craft items, build shelters, defend against threats, and carefully manage health and hunger to survive for as long as possible. Instead of progressing through linear levels, survival games center around emergent gameplay mechanics.

This means players can explore, build, and interact with the world at their own pace. Survival games offer an addictive gameplay loop of exploration, crafting gear to access new areas and gather better resources, building a protected home base, and eventually trying to escape or conquer the hostile environment.

The genre has great diversity, with settings ranging from deserted islands, post-apocalyptic wastelands, freezing tundras, alien planets, and zombie-infested cities.

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What To Look For in a Survival Game

When it comes to survival games, there are a few key elements that contribute to an engaging and memorable experience:

  • Crafting/Building – The ability to craft weapons, tools, shelter, and other items is at the core of any good survival game. You start with nothing and must slowly gather resources and blueprints to create a fully stocked arsenal and fortress. This sense of steady, long-term progression is very rewarding.
  • Challenging Survival Elements – Simply staying alive from moment to moment should require skill and constant attention. Monitoring your character’s vitals, like hunger, thirst, warmth, and health, keeps tension high. Having to juggle multiple needs creates dynamic and emergent gameplay.
  • Exploration/Discovery – The worlds should encourage you to explore and uncover secrets that improve your chances of survival. Seeing landmarks and sights for the first time feels triumphant. Hidden caches of supplies add incentive to search every nook and cranny.
  • Multiplayer Co-op – Teaming up with friends can greatly enrich survival gameplay. You can collaborate on building a shared base while watching each other’s backs against enemies. The social elements enhance long-term motivation and enjoyment.

Survival games ignite our imagination and provide endless hours of compelling gameplay when these elements come together just right.


Survival games let us enact our primal fantasies of overcoming incredible odds to triumph against nature. Xbox One features an impressive library of top-tier survival games that let you test your mettle across many harsh and fantastical worlds.

Whether you prefer the mysterious deep sea depths of Subnautica, the unforgiving tundra in The Long Dark, ruling dinosaurs in ARK, slaying zombies in 7 Days to Die, or outsmarting cannibals in The Forest, Xbox One has a remarkable title to satisfy your survival cravings.

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Q: What are some good beginner survival games on Xbox One?

A: Some good survival games for beginners on Xbox One include The Flame in the Flood, Astroneer, and No Man’s Sky. They have easier crafting systems and survival mechanics.

Q: Do any Xbox One survival games have split-screen co-op?

A: Yes, 7 Days to Die and The Forest offer 2 players split-screen co-op on Xbox One so you can survive the apocalypse or cannibal hordes side-by-side with a friend.

Q: Are there any Xbox One survival games set in space?

A: Subnautica and No Man’s Sky provide excellent survival gameplay on alien planets and deep space, respectively. Astroneer is another great sci-fi survival option.

Q: Do Xbox One survival games have a creative mode just for building?

A: Many survival games like ARK, 7 Days to Die, and The Forest include creative modes that provide unlimited resources for constructing bases and fortifications without enemies or survival challenges.

Q: Are there any iconic survival game franchises on Xbox One?

A: Yes, Tomb Raider and Fallout are two of the most acclaimed action-survival game franchises, and both have entries available on Xbox One consoles.

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