Note: Retail console purchased for review. There'll be a score at the end based on how I feel about the console at launch.
Microsoft has spent the last few years leading the pack when it comes to gamer-friendly business practices, using their mid-gen Xbox One X upgrade as a launchpad. Despite constantly being told no one wants to play old games, their backward-compatibility program has ensured this is now an important feature on both major consoles. They’ve worked to improve accessibility on the hardware, operating system, and software level. Perhaps most significantly, they’ve taken the original premise of game-streaming and turned it into a high-value, low-cost subscription service with Xbox Game Pass, which provides access to console (and PC) Microsoft exclusives on day-one, with a rotating selection of third-party and backward-compatible games.
No doubt a lot of these initiatives were driven by a need to recover from a rough start to the last generation, but it resulted in a lot of goodwill, media coverage, and even granted them the underdog status in the eyes of many. That said, the Xbox brand still has a lot to prove when it comes to hardware power and delivering a steady flow of quality exclusives from their first- and second-party developers. With the Xbox Series X, they’ve conclusively addressed the hardware concerns. However, when it comes to exclusive games, several recent developer acquisitions have shown the potential of what’s to come, but the launch window and year ahead still remains light on content.
...the Xbox brand still has a lot to prove when it comes to hardware power and delivering a steady flow of quality exclusives from their first- and second-party developers.
It has a similar design to the Xbox One S, just cut in half and slightly thicker, with the extraction fan highlighted by a black finish.
Microsoft has gone for a unified user interface between their new and last-gen consoles.
However, my experience so far – be that for new games, “optimized” cross-gen games, and backward-compatible games – has been rock solid framerates, so this was the right choice.
Thankfully, when it comes to Xbox exclusives, several optimized last-gen games, and backward-compatible games, the results are far more impressive...
When it comes to last-gen games, the Series S enhances the Xbox One S version of games, providing faster load times, improved texture filtering, eliminates screen-tear, and maxes out both the dynamic resolution and framerate cap.
Enjoys games with awesome stories and characters, along with new and interesting hardware. Dislikes day-one patches and driver updates.
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10 November 2020
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