How to install Xbox Series X games

Xbox Series X dashboard
(Image credit: Xbox)

Install Xbox Series X games by inserting a physical disc or by downloading digital versions onto your brand new console so you can start playing ASAP. Installing games onto your Xbox Series X is an easy process as its largely automatic, but it's important to understand the ins and outs of the two methods as you might have particular preference as to whether you want physical or digital games, or where you want your games to be stored. Now that you've hopefully got something good from these Xbox Series X deals, begin installing some games and play away!

How to install digital Xbox Series X games

Xbox Series X UI

(Image credit: Future / Xbox)

It couldn't be easier to install Xbox Series X games from the Xbox store. First, you'll want to navigate to the store from the Xbox Series X dashboard (the store icon is pinned in the bottom row of icons on the Xbox guide), purchase whatever game it is that you're looking for, and then proceed to click the "Install, you own this" button. From there, the digital game will be added to your download queue and will install automatically. 

If you're trying to download and install something that you already own, you could do that from the Xbox Store, but it is easier to navigate to My Games and Apps (either from the dashboard or the Guide), scroll down to the 'Full Library' option and from there you'll be able to see all owned games – which can be separated by genre, number of players, and console types, if you hit the filter button in the top right – as well as all of the games you have redeemed via Games with Gold, and those available through Xbox Game Pass and EA Play.

From there, the process is the same. Click the game tile and proceed to press A on the 'Install All' option to download and install the entire game. If you're looking to save space on that 1TB SSD, you can also manage the install by clicking the menu button on your controller (that's button with three horizontal lines) while looking at the game you want to install, and then selecting the 'Manage game and add-ons' option – some games will let you segment the game file to just download campaign, multiplayer, and manage DLC and any pre-order bonuses.

Of course, there is one more option for returning Xbox players with an external storage drive to hand, and you'll want to direct your attention to our how to transfer games to Xbox Series X external transfer page for more guidance on that one. 

How to install Xbox Series X disc games

Xbox Series X UI

(Image credit: Future)

By now you probably know what discs work in an Xbox Series X and now you're wondering how to install Xbox Series X disc games to the console. The process is similar to downloading and installing digital games. You'll want to pop the disc into the console at which point the install will automatically be added to the queue in My Games and Apps. If the console requires additional space, it will flag that the 1TB SSD is full, and if the game requires an update you'll have the option of installing that automatically as well. Do note that while the game installs to your console's storage, you will still need the disc in your console to play - learn how to eject an Xbox Series X disc here!

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Josh West
UK Managing Editor, GamesRadar+

Josh West is the UK Managing Editor of GamesRadar+. He has over 10 years experience in online and print journalism, and holds a BA (Hons) in Journalism and Feature Writing. Prior to starting his current position, Josh has served as GR+'s Features Editor and Deputy Editor of games™ magazine, and has freelanced for numerous publications including 3D Artist, Edge magazine, iCreate, Metal Hammer, Play, Retro Gamer, and SFX. Additionally, he has appeared on the BBC and ITV to provide expert comment, written for Scholastic books, edited a book for Hachette, and worked as the Assistant Producer of the Future Games Show. In his spare time, Josh likes to play bass guitar and video games. Years ago, he was in a few movies and TV shows that you've definitely seen but will never be able to spot him in.