Four years after its current-gen console first launched, Microsoft has released the upgraded Xbox One X. The software giant heralds its latest device in the Xbox One family as “the most powerful console ever”–and its 4K capabilities make Xbox games look better than before. But, with the new console’s release, I’m left wondering which of its games are compelling enough to make me rush out and buy one.
There’s third-party stuff, sure: Assassin’s Creed’s year off has helped remove some of the fatigue surrounding that franchise, and Origins has been well-received. And Middle-earth: Shadow of War, which has been heavily marketed on Xbox, is, mostly, a worthy successor to Shadow of Mordor. But in terms of exclusives, Xbox fans have been left wanting this year.
The delay of Crackdown 3, the only major Xbox One exclusive scheduled to launch around the Xbox One X, has left a gaping hole in the console’s lineup. Combined with an already sparse exclusive release schedule for Xbox One’s holiday season, this offers little incentive to buy an Xbox One X outside of possessing power for power’s sake.
Sea of Thieves was scheduled for launch this year, but now it’s not coming until early 2018. And Scalebound–a relatively niche but much-anticipated game–isn’t happening at all. That leaves Cuphead, Forza Motorsport 7, Super Lucky’s Tale, and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (sort of) as Microsoft’s console exclusives for the end of the year. A somewhat uninspiring lineup in itself, it’s also not exactly a serving that makes me want to invest US $499 / £449 / AU $649 on an upgraded console. Of those four games, only Forza feels like one that could meaningfully benefit from the Xbox One X’s greater horsepower: Cuphead is more about style than performance, PUBG looks a little rough on any hardware (as you would expect from an early access game), and as a 3D platformer, Super Lucky’s Tale is not something I feel I desperately need in 60 FPS.
2017, however, has been a different story. Horizon Zero Dawn was an unexpected hit, Yakuza 0and Persona 5 brought some much-needed variety, and Crash Bandicoot’s N. Sane Trilogy made me nostalgic like only an orange marsupial (or purple dragon) can. Compare that to Xbox’s past year and there’s a clear divide.
For what it’s worth, I haven’t rushed out to buy a PS4 Pro either, so maybe I’m just not the type to want to shell out wads of cash for smallish gains in performance, and perhaps there’s nothing Microsoft could ever do about that. But Sony‘s exclusive lineup over the past couple of years–with The Last of Us: Part II on the horizon–made me at least stop and consider it. We don’t know what the next couple of years may hold for Xbox, but we do know at the very least that Naughty Dog’s apocalyptic adventure game is on its way, and that’s likely to be a bigger selling point for PS4 Pro than anything currently announced will be for Xbox One X.
So is there any hope for the Xbox One X? Read the full story at GameSpot