Xbox Series X is slowly but surely approaching, set to usher in a new generation of consoles alongside the PS5. Like all big hardware launches, it will be accompanied by a selection of massive games set to showcase the console at its best.
However, Microsoft is playing things a little different with the Xbox Series X, with all of its major launch offerings also coming to Xbox One and Windows 10 simultaneously. This is a far cry from the PlayStation 5, which will be offering the likes of Demon’s Souls and Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales as traditional exclusives.
Microsoft’s approach is arguably a double-edged sword and could turn away general consumers, but it’s easily the more forward-thinking approach, especially with services like Xbox Game Pass and Project xCloud becoming more and more mainstream.
What are the Xbox Series X launch games?
We’ve compiled all the major launch games we know about so far for the Xbox Series X below, which include first-party blockbusters, big hitters from third-parties and even a couple of indie darlings.
Developer: 343 Industries
It’s been almost four years since the release of Halo 5: Guardians, which is a long absence from Master Chief and company, especially when The Reclaimer Trilogy remains unsolved after a truly epic cliffhanger. Cortana has gone rogue, taking control of UNSC systems across the galaxy. Oh, and she’s found another Halo ring, meaning she could bring the entire universe down with her if Chief, Arbiter and friends don’t stop her before it’s too late.
Halo Infinite will continue this story, despite not being a numbered entry in the franchise. It’s heading in a new direction, aiming to depict wider environments and more ambitious mechanics all made possible by Slipstream Engine. Chances are you’ll be teaming up with friends, taking on missions and finally concluding a narrative we’ve been waiting years to see come to fruition. It’s time to finish the fight.
Yakuza 7: Like a Dragon
Having already been released as a PS4 exclusive in Japan, Yakuza: Like a Dragon will be arriving on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X and PC in the West later this year. That’s more platforms than any Yakuza launch before it, and teases a hugely exciting future for Sega’s cult franchise. It’s one we’ve been screaming about from the rooftops for years here at Trusted Reviews, and we can’t wait for its popularity to skyrocket.
For those unfamiliar, Yakuza: Like a Dragon is a role-playing video game set in Yokohama, Japan. Unlike previous entries in the series, this is a turn-based affair featuring a new protagonist, new city and an abundance of new zany activities to partake in throughout the massive campaign. It’s still somewhat alien to see such an established PlayStation franchise make a splash on Xbox, but if it means even more people can enjoy it, who are we to complain.
Watch Dogs Legion
Watch Dogs Legion takes players to a future vision of Britain where the controversial Brexit result has turned London into a neon-drenched dystopian hellscape. A sudden terrorist attack has brought the capital under authoritarian rule, with military police roaming the street and putting unruly citizens into submission.
You are DedSec, and can recruit anyone in the world to a resistance to fight back against evil powers and liberate the city of London. By completing missions you can play as literally anyone in the open world, each with their own unique skills and abilities to experiment with. It’s an exciting new direction for the series, even if the impact of its political storytelling seems a bit divisive.
Developer: Electronic Arts
FIFA 21 is making a predictable splash on next-generation consoles later this year, and will be bringing with it an assortment of visual and mechanical enhancements alongside all the expected licenses and teams being renewed from the previous season. The Covid-19 pandemic means the world of professional sport has been a little strange this year, but things are slowly returning to normality.
This year’s installment will see all your usual modes, teams and mechanics alongside the return of Volta – a new vision of street football which debuted with FIFA 20. Don’t expect a new chapter in Alex Hunter’s The Journey anytime soon though, it seems Electronic Arts has abandoned that. Either way, football fans have a lot to look forward to with this one.
Developer: CD Projekt Red
Cyberpunk 2077 is arguably the biggest game of the year, and CD Projekt Red has already confirmed that it will be coming to next-gen consoles. It will support Smart Delivery, so you’ll be able to use existing copies of the game on Xbox Series X with absolutely no issue. All your saves, achievements and other progress will carry over.
It has also been confirmed that a next-gen patch will be coming after launch which will enhance the monolithic RPG. We imagine this will come in the form of better visuals, faster performance and perhaps even ray tracing support. Only time will tell, but it’s exciting to know we already have a huge, ambitious adventure to look forward to on new consoles.
Developer: Crystal Dynamics
Like a number of sprawling multiplayer titles, Crystal Dynamics has confirmed that Marvel’s Avengers will be available as a launch title for PS5 and Xbox Series X. It will take full advantage of the new hardware with improved performance, resolution and visual features which simply aren’t possible on older consoles. It looks amazing already, so we’re excited to see how the minds behind Tomb Raider will utilise these new platforms.
Marvel’s Avengers has you taking control of Iron Man, Hulk, Thor, Kamala Khan, Black Widow and Captain America as you seek to overthrow an evil threat and restore the reputation of superheroes across the world. There will be a solo campaign and missions where you can team up with friends to take on large stages and even larger boss battles. Also, you can expect plenty of satisfying customisation options in a similar vein to Destiny 2 or The Division.
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla
Following in the footsteps of Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, the next entry in Ubisoft’s open-world series will take players to The Viking Age scattered across Great Britain, Norway and Scandinavia. It’s poised to be a vast, beautiful and ambitious adventure which will build further upon the series’ growing adoption of RPG mechanics.
Much like Odyssey, you can choose between a male or female protagonist, and will have your very own settlement to grow and mould into your own virtual home throughout the game’s campaign. Chances are its occupants, atmosphere and morales will be influenced by your own decisions. Obviously, players can once again expect the franchises’ signature exploration, combat and massive sense of scope, pushed even further with next-gen consoles.