Despite the craziness of 2020, the video game industry is as strong as ever, and fans have quite a lot of amazing games, powerful consoles, and fresh surprises to look forward to this holiday season.
The Xbox Series X is slated to be Microsoft’s fastest and most powerful console when it’s released this November. Current Xbox One owners will likely appreciate the Series X upgrades, as it will be optimized for gorgeous 4K and 8K gaming, offer lightning-fast loading times, and have an integrated 1TB SSD for storing a sizable portion of an existing game library right out of the box. Fans will be able to play all of their Xbox One games, as well as thousands of Xbox 360 and original Xbox games, on the new Xbox Series X (except for Kinect-based titles). Older controllers and accessories will be compatible as well, which will help to make the cost of upgrading easier on your wallet.
Unfortunately, Microsoft has yet to announce an exact launch date for the Xbox Series X, how much the console will cost, or a list of all the games that will release alongside it. The teams at Xbox Game Studios still have plenty of secrets to share between now and the holidays, but until we receive more concrete news about the Xbox Series X, here are a few upcoming games to hold you over until then:
"Halo Infinite" will be the flagship game that will launch alongside the Xbox Series X, and we are excited to see the return of Master Chief face down a brutal horde of aliens known only as The Banished when it releases in 2021.
Some of the other top-tier games that Xbox fans should keep on their radar include “Battletoads,” “Psychonauts 2,” and “Everwild,” but their release dates are currently up in the air as well.
If you need something to hold you over until the holiday season, we recommend joining Xbox Game Pass and venturing into the small yet massive world of “Grounded.” Players are tasked with crafting tools from grass and pebbles, dealing with the threat of savage spiders, and finding a way to survive the harsh landscape of the average backyard after being shrunken down to the size of an ant, but solving the mysteries of “Grounded” is even more exciting when you bring up to three friends to help out via online co-op.
The summertime release of "Paper Mario: The Origami King" caught many Mario fans by surprise, but Nintendo’s future plans for the Switch are a secret for now. Even though Nintendo themselves don’t have any brand-new games scheduled for the end of the year, Switch owners should get excited for fresh downloadable content for the games they already own, such as future fighters for "Super Smash Bros. Ultimate", a winter update for "Animal Crossing New Horizons", and "The Crown Tundra", the frozen adventure set to unfold in Pokémon Shield and Sword this fall. Of course, there will be a fresh batch of Metroid, Donkey Kong, and Pokémon games for the Nintendo Switch someday, so stay tuned!
Sony is set to release the creatively designed PlayStation 5 this holiday season as well, and this console is an impressive beast that rivals the Xbox Series X. Some of the most alluring features of the PS5 will include the ability to jump in and out of multiple games without having to load them, a built-in microphone for headset-free voice chat and controls, and backward compatibility with thousands of games from the PS4 library, as well as its controllers, accessories, and PSVR. PlayStation enthusiasts will also have the option to purchase a completely digital PS5 that does not include a disc drive, which is a solid choice for anyone why buys the majority of their games online to begin with.
Unfortunately, the cost of the PS5 console and the date you can buy one are still a mystery, but it won’t be a surprise to see games like the action-packed “Spider-Man: Miles Morales,” mysterious “Oddworld Soulstorm,” and charmingly weird “Bugsnax” to be major hits for the holidays.
If you’re looking for something to hold your attention until the PS5 hits stores later this year, the intense samurai combat of "Ghost of Tsushima", the hilariously silly competition of “Fall Guys,” and the apocalyptic zombie-infested world of "Resident Evil 3" should easily hold you over until then.
Arnold Carreiro is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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