Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S Review Roundup

Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S Review Roundup

Written by on | OpenCritic

The Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S both launch in stores worldwide next week on November 10, and whether you're on the fence, have your pre-order confirmed, or simply curious, reviews are now online. Here's a roundup of Xbox Series X and Series S reviews from around the internet.

Xbox Series X

 

Tom Warren for The Verge

Not only does it feel like you’re upgrading your PC if you move from an Xbox One to an Xbox Series X, but it feels and looks like it. (Hello, PC tower design.) You take everything you already own, even existing hardware accessories, and you bring them along with you, just like you do on a PC.

It’s a different approach to Sony with the PS5 and its dedicated exclusive next-gen games, new dashboard UI, and new controller. Microsoft has focused on the basics that really matter: high frame rates, a quiet and cool console, faster load times, accessory support, and backward compatibility. In my three weeks of using an Xbox Series X, it’s fair to say it has delivered on these basics.

Ryan McCaffrey for IGN

We can only assume that the Xbox Series X will wow us with new and spectacular next-gen games eventually, because there isn’t much to judge it on right now. But in the meantime, no matter what current games you throw at it, your loading times will be drastically cut, your framerates will be smoother, and your resolutions will be higher. This bold and minimalistically designed box is quiet, compact for both the power it packs and especially how it compares to the PS5, capable, and loaded with convenience features like instantly resuming and cycling between any of your recently played games. Compared directly to the PlayStation 5’s specs, it flat-out gives you more power for the same price. It’s going to be a joy to see what developers actually do with it in the coming years.

Kat Bailey for USGamer

Impressive as the tech is, most of the Xbox Series X's best games are available on other platforms, and its potential is all theoretical right now. Even Xbox Game Pass is available elsewhere. If you do decide to spring for an Xbox Series X though, you will find a powerful console with impressive loading times—a small but potent machine that offers a worthy alternative to high-end gaming PCs going forward.

Coming off a very difficult generation, Microsoft definitely still has a lot of ground to make up, and there's still plenty of work to be done to rehabilitate its reputation among gaming enthusiasts. But this time, at least, I can say with some confidence that the best is yet to come.

Devindra Hardawar for Engadget

The Xbox Series X is everything the Xbox One wasn't. It's fast in every way, it handles 4K gaming with ease, and it obliterates lengthy loading times. It's purely focused on delivering the best gaming experience possible, instead of being a half-hearted all-in-one entertainment device. The only problem is there aren't many compelling games at launch, which leaves Microsoft a bit flat-footed against the PS5. Still, even without many exclusive games, the Series X will run many existing games just as well as a modern PC. And for many gamers, that's enough.

Chris Plante for Polygon

The Xbox Series X looks like an Xbox One that swallowed a refrigerator, and runs like an Xbox One that swallowed a Lambo. It’s fast, sturdy, and unobtrusive, its goals and capabilities encapsulated in its brutalist industrial design.

The Xbox Series X isn’t the home of Microsoft’s gaming universe; it’s just one of many nodes, connecting outward to your phone, your tablet, your computer, or just a different (and cheaper) Xbox. It’s not the place to play video games. It’s a place to play video games — not only from the future, but also from the present and the past.

Dan Ackerman for CNET

Like the PS5, the Xbox Series X is a big investment, yet preorders sold out in minutes and we expect all new consoles will be hard to find this holiday season. That said, if the lifecycle of game consoles remains in the seven- to eight-year range, it's also an incredible value in the long run. Microsoft and Sony asking for $500 every seven years feels a lot more reasonable than certain phone-makers suggesting you drop $1,000 or more on a slightly newer phone every 12-24 months.

 

Xbox Series S

 

Tom Warren for The Verge

The Xbox Series S is full of unknowns right now. The use case for this console isn’t as obvious as some might think. It’s not necessarily the best budget option, thanks to the storage situation. Yet, it looks ideal for a bedroom TV, for Xbox Game Pass, or as a Fortnite console. If you can deal with the storage and you’re only playing on a 1080p TV, then this should make Xbox games shine like never before. I’m just not sure what else it will deliver for the next generation of games we’re all excited about.

Ryan McCaffrey for IGN

All in all, the Series S offers plenty of present-day value considering it only costs $300. It’s limited to 1440p resolution and has a claustrophobically small storage space, but it’s tiny and quiet, with snappy load times, and can play games at 120 frames per second if your TV can support it. I’m mostly concerned about its long-term viability. Games are only going to get more demanding going forward, so the Series S isn’t something I’d recommend as your main gaming platform. But that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have its place: The Series S is an excellent second console, like if you want something for a kid who plays on a smaller screen or if, for example, you have a PS5 but want to occasionally dip into the smorgasboard that is Game Pass. As long as you’re clear on what the Series S’s strengths and limitations are, it’s a unique, budget-friendly way to take your first steps into the new console generation.

Will Greenwald for PC Mag

The Xbox Series S is the budget version of the Xbox Series X, and it shows. It might only cost $300, but it sacrifices too much compared with the Xbox Series X. The console lacks an optical drive, there’s half as much storage, and it’s drastically underpowered, so you can’t enjoy all of the detail and smoothness you get on the Xbox Series X. The Series S would be a better value if Microsoft fit the performance and capacity of the Series X into a $400 box simply by removing the optical drive, like Sony did with the PS5 Digital Edition. Ultimately, the Series S is a capable system if you just want to play the newest Xbox games for the most affordable price, but it falls a bit flat when held against the performance and features you get with the Series X.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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