Life is Strange 2 and more come to Game Pass in January

The holidays are now behind us, and it seems some games companies are ready to make news again. First up is Microsoft, which announced its Game Pass lineup for the month of January — and, honestly, managed to pull off quite the surprise.

Some eagle-eyed Xbox One owners noticed over the holiday break that both Life is Strange and Life is Strange: Before the Storm made their way into Game Pass without official announcements. Microsoft acknowledged today that both titles were "sneakily added" a bit early, and are actually part of the January list of games.

Now here's the kicker. Microsoft is also adding Life is Strange 2 to Game Pass this month, with the game's first episode being made available tomorrow. And as new episodes are released for Life is Strange 2, they'll also become part of the Game Pass library. That is a pretty welcome gift for those who might have knocked out the other two Life is Strange games back in December, and a pretty big get for Game Pass as a service.

Game Pass has served as a launch pad for several indie games. But Life is Strange 2? That's a Square Enix joint. Adding that game with four episodes remaining — and including those episodes in the subscription — is a big deal.

That's not all that's coming to Game Pass in January, though. Fans of the survival-slash-crafting genre will find Ark: Survival Evolved in the Game Pass library tomorrow, along with Farming Simulator 17. And there are a few more games hitting in the first third of the month, with Absolver coming Jan. 7, Just Cause 3 arriving on Jan. 10, and Aftercharge also hitting the service on Jan. 10.

And that's still not all. According to Microsoft's Matt Percy, those games are simply meant to kick off the January additions, stating, "We'll be adding more throughout January just like we did in December. January = HOTNESS."

We'll have our eyes peeled for more Game Pass news later in the month.