Xbox Series X Review: Xbox Game Pass
Xbox Game Pass has been around for a while now, offering an easy way to get access to a suite of games for a rather affordable monthly price of $9.99 or £7.99. This has long made it one of the best bargains in the gaming world.
But I’d argue that Game Pass is an essential partner for the Xbox Series X. While the aforementioned launch line up of Xbox Series X games might be a little lacking, Game Pass provides a huge range of new and old games to play on the flagship console. Furthermore, many of these come with Xbox Series X and Series S enhancements, meaning the Xbox Series X is the best place to play such games you may have missed on the Xbox One.
Fork out $14.99 or £10.99 a month and you’ll get access to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which provides access to Xbox and PC games, as well as cloud streaming and save syncing between all three platforms. It’s simply a fantastic deal in fact, right now I’d go as far as to say that Xbox Game Pass is the best deal in gaming.
What’s more a whole suite of upcoming Xbox One and Series X games will be released day-one on Game Pass, meaning its one of the most affordable ways to get new games.
Xbox Series X Review: Games
On the whole, there aren’t a huge amout of new Xbox Series X games that are exclusive for the console. And neither will there be, as games will also need to be playable on the Xbox Series S, as well as come to Windows 10, and soon Windows 11, PCs.
However, the Xbox Series X and Series S will have upcoming console exclusives in the from of Halo Infinite, Fable 4 and Starfield, as well as a bevy of other titles checkout our recap of the Xbox and Bethesda Games Showcase at E3 2021 for a full breakdown.
But while you wait for those games there’s a bevy of Xbox Series X and Series S enhanced games to play. The likes of Cyberpunk 2077, Forza Horizon 4, Yakuza: Like a Dragon, and Destiny 2: Beyond Light and Sea of Thieves will all run better on the Xbox Series X than other Xbox hardware. Do bear in mind that some games will chew through SSD space, including the upcoming Stalker 2: Heart of Chernobyl.
Xbox Game Pass New Games: Full List And Schedule
It can be easy to lose track of all the new games coming to Xbox Game Pass, so we’ve compiled the full list for your convenience. In this section of our Xbox Game Pass guide, learn what games have been released on Xbox Game Pass recently, when they became available, and what platforms on which they’re available.
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Xbox Two Is Called Xbox Series X
After many rumors and leaks, Microsoft confirmed in the middle of the night that the Xbox Series X wouldn’t be the only console launching in November. It was joined by the Series S, an all-digital system with “next-gen performance,” priced at a mere $299! The Xbox Series S launched on November 10th, 2020, alongside the Xbox Series X!
The news in August of 2020 that Halo Infinite would not be a launch title stung a lot for fans, but after the backlash of the graphics shown in the July stream, it seems it could be the right call. Among that news, Microsoft also published a blog post which confirms that the Xbox Series X is launching in November of 2020.
Things also got interesting in August of 2020 when images of a new controller leaked and revealed some new information. Specifically, the box has a sticker that says not to open or sell it before November 6, 2020. Take a look:
Xbox Series X may launch on November 6th. A tipster tells me boxes of the new controllers have a do not open date of November 6th on them. These controllers leaked earlier this week
Apparently some of these controllers went on sale by accident in Chicago, but no one has emerged to explain how that happened. Interestingly, people who managed to snag one of the controllers found out that the warranty, when registered, expires on November 5th, 2021, furthering speculation about an early November release date.
The End Of The Xbox One Family
Microsoft refers to the Xbox One, the S, and the X as part of one Xbox Family. This means that you can play your games on any one of these consoles and use your accessories on each of them too. No one gets left behind.
Its pretty exciting, especially when you look at the effort Microsoft has put into backwards compatibility. With a huge selection of Xbox 360 and original Xbox titles available to play on the current generation, the plan is to keep this compatibility moving forward.
Can they do it? Will they be able to transition to the Xbox 2 and still keep everything backwards compatible? If anyone can do it, its them. With Phil Spencer at the head of the charge, the possibilities are endless.
Come check out our page on The End of the Xbox One to see how we believe Microsoft will make this important transition into the future.
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Auto Hdr On Xbox Series X
Like the Xbox One, the Xbox Series X allows for calibration of HDR for games. We’d advise setting this before playing any games, as it ensures the balance of contrast is spot-on, giving you the best visuals possible.
For our initial review, we primarily had access to a selection of backwards-compatible titles which are the best indicator of the boost in performance the Xbox Series X delivers over its last-gen counterparts. With the above settings enabled, we found that the games immediately looked better on the Xbox Series X which isn’t particularly surprising, given that Microsoft has implemented native HDR for these titles.
We go into detail as to how this performance boost improves Xbox Series X Optimized titles further down, but in short, when playing backwards-compatible titles on the Xbox One S and Xbox Series X versions side-by-side we could clearly see the visual upgrade.
Xbox Series X: Launch Date And Stock Checker
Our sources confirmed that the Xbox Series X would launch alongside the Xbox Series S on Nov. 10, 2020, and indeed, Microsoft delivered.
The vast majority of stocks are now sold out as of writing in 2021, owing to the ongoing semi-conductor shortage hitting the world’s tech. If you’re lucky, you may still be able to nab one from various retailers including Walmart, the Microsoft official store, Best Buy, Amazon, and more.
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System Software And Features
Both consoles feature a similar user interface to the Xbox One, but there has been a 40% reduction in memory use to improve its speed. According to the UI development team, the Home section loads in about half the time as it did on the Xbox One. Other changes include adding rounded UI elements, a more-readable font for text elements, rearrangement of certain aligned features, and improvements to the sharing functions. These changes were brought to the Xbox One system software, the Windows’ Xbox application, and the Xbox mobile application around September 2020. Based on system previews, about 200 GB of space was reserved on the internal drive of the Xbox Series X for system files.
The console’s Quick Resume feature will allow users to suspend and resume more than one game at a time, and also resume suspended games after a reboot of the console.
Several video and streaming media services will be available through the system software on the consoles’ launch notably, it will be the first time that Apple TV+ will be available on Xbox consoles.
Microsoft plans to migrate the xCloud service from Xbox One S-based blade servers to Xbox Series X-based systems by 2021.
Gta 6 Release Date: When Is Gta 6 Coming Out
While Rockstar Games has finally announced it’s working on GTA 6, it hasn’t revealed when we’ll get our hands on the highly-anticipated new Grand Theft Auto game. But, there have been plenty of reports and rumors that could hint at when we’ll get our hands on Grand Theft Auto 6.
Rockstar Games has revealed that GTA 6 is in “active development” and, according to a Kotaku report, this “new entry in the Grand Theft Auto series” was in early development as of April 2020. Kotaku’s report claimed this new installment is planned to be a “moderately sized release” which will be “expanded with regular updates over time”. So, the game may be further along in development than we expected.
However, while the Kotaku report didn’t give us an idea of when GTA 6 will release, publisher Take-Two Interactive’s marketing budget may have given us our most solid GTA 6 release date hint. As reported by VentureBeat, Take-Two’s 10-K SEC filing from 2020 shows that the company expects to spend $89 million on marketing between April 2023, and the end of March 2024 – that’s a huge spike and, as the report points out, more than half the marketing budget expected for any other fiscal year over the next decade
Now that Rockstar Games has confirmed it’s working on a new GTA, it seems likely that the spike is because of this new title, which could put GTA 6’s release date between April 2023 and March 2024.
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New Xbox Series X Model Coming In 2023
The rumor further goes on to suggest that an upgraded Xbox Series X might also be in the works and is set to be released in 2023. How much powerful it will be is not mentioned, nor is the name, which we can only assume to be Xbox Series Ä.
Here’s the full video if you want to hear all of this from the horse’s mouth :
Moore’s Law is Dead is quite the authority on detailed commentary and rumors on the latest tech, so you can take this as a reliable source, while still applying that healthy salty doubt.
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What Is Ray Tracing For Minecraft On Xbox Series X
Ray tracing is one of those vague gaming terms that doesn’t concern the vast majority of gamers. However, when properly used, ray tracing can have real effects on how a game looks, particularly in the atmosphere department. On games that are already meant to be photo-realistic, ray tracing allows them to take it to the next level by accurately portraying lighting instead of simply “guessing” as was commonplace before. It’s very complicated, but fortunately, we’re here to break it all down.
Ray tracing, down at its core, requires three things to work: capable hardware, supported drivers and software, and a game built with ray tracing in mind. With Xbox Series X|S, all three of these things will be present, with ray tracing being touted as an essential next-gen feature for both the Xbox Series X|S and the PS5. Minecraft could be one of the games to support real-time ray tracing at some point in the future.
Now, it should be noted that Minecraft with ray tracing already exists, and it looks incredible, completely altering the look and feel of this over-10-year-old game. We even paired Minecraft with ray tracing and an NVIDIA RTX 3060 for even more beautiful results. However, Minecraft with ray tracing is currently available only for Minecraft: Bedrock Edition on Windows 10 when paired with high-end NVIDIA RTX GPUs.
If you want all the details regarding Minecraft with ray tracing, be sure to check out our ultimate guide on Minecraft with ray tracing.
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Xbox Series X: Size And Dimensions
Just how big is this thing? Microsoft has now released official dimensions, putting it at 301mm x 151mm x 151mm .
Compared to an Xbox One X at 300mm x 240mm x 60mm, the Xbox Series X has a far larger volume, most likely to accommodate airflow and the technology inside it. Microsoft has stated that it built it this way to ensure that it is virtually silent while powering next-gen cutting edge visuals. You can compare the size of the Series X against the Series S and PlayStation 5 in the link below.
Microsoft Xbox Series S Refresh In 2022 Xbox Series X Refresh In 2023 To Utilize Amd’s New 6nm Apus
According to MLID, Microsoft seems to be readying its refresh lineup starting with the Xbox Series S console first. This is being done to tackle the PlayStation 5 Slim which is expected to launch around a similar timeframe in late 2022. The new Xbox Series S console is said to be a higher-spec’d variant of the existing Xbox Series S console.
The reason to get the new Xbox Series S console out so early is that Microsoft sees a higher attach rate to its Xbox Game Pass on the Xbox Series S compared to the Xbox Series X. Since the company, allegedly, operates the Xbox brand as a SaaS which relies entirely on its pass sales, they want more consumers to grab the game pass and to do that, they want to release a new and better Xbox Series S which would not only give new users an incentive to upgrade but will also result in dropping the prices on the existing Xbox Series S to around $189-$249 US which will drive in more users towards the Xbox platform, even if they use it as a secondary console.
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Xbox And Bethesda Games Showcase At E3 2021 June 13 2021
- A Plague Tale: Requiem 2022
- Atomic Heart No release date
- Contraband No release date
- Eiyuden Chronicle: Hundred Heroes 2023
- Eiyuden Chronicle: Rising 2022
- Halo Infinite Dec. 8, 2021
- Hello Neighbor 2 2021
- Party Animals 2022
- Redfall Summer 2022
- Replaced 2022
- Scorn Oct. 2022
- Shredders Dec. 2021
- Slime Rancher 2 2022
- Somerville 2022
- S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2: Heart of Chernobyl April 28, 2022
- Starfield Nov. 11, 2022
- The Anacrusis Jan. 13, 2022
- The Gunk Dec. 16, 2021
- The Outer Worlds 2 No release date
Xbox Series X: Games And Backward Compatibility
At The Game Awards, Microsoft showed off a new trailer for Senua’s Saga: Hellblade II, which it claims is comprised entirely of in-engine footage. Considering the insane work Ninja Theory did for the original Hellblade in terms of digitizing its performance artists, it’s entirely believable that what we see here is genuinely representative of next-gen technology.
Microsoft has invested more than ever in first-party content moving into next-gen, not just because of the Project Scarlett consoles, but also for Xbox Cloud Streaming, its nascent streaming service, available now on Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. Both platforms use the same developer environments, ensuring this Xbox iteration could have the largest install base ever, leading to more developer support than ever.
Microsoft revealed a range of impressive-looking games coming to Xbox Series X, including Halo Infinite with a free-to-play multiplayer component, with 120 frames per second gameplay. Avowed, which looks like Obsidian’s answer to Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, and State of Decay 3.
Microsoft also revealed the long-rumored Fable from Playground Games. Microsoft also confirmed that 50 games existing and future will launch with Xbox Series X enhancements, from increased resolution, frame rates, and beyond. Games optimized for the Xbox Series X will also be optimized for the Xbox Series S, producing higher frame rates in games like Destiny 2 and Assassin’s Creed Valhalla.
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Xbox : Everything We Know
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Microsoft confirmed they were working on their next-gen console, Xbox 2 at E3 2019. Codenamed Project Scarlett, this new console looks set to be a powerful game-changer that could even give the PS5 a run for its money. But, how much do we actually know about Xbox 2? Read on to find out.
When Is The Xbox Series X Release Date
It has now been announced that the new Xbox Series X release date will be 10th November this year and it will be the most powerful Xbox to date. There will also be a more affordable version of the console named the Xbox S which will be released at the same time. Xbox Series X pre-orders began on22nd September.
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