While the Xbox Series X/S may be near impossible to find, there are still plenty of gifts for gamers who love Xbox. With a fantastic year of gaming, to the slew of new hardware that just hit the market, 2020 is a fantastic year to be a Xbox Fan. We know it can be hard when the one gift many people want is the new console, so we built a list that includes something for everyone, even for fans that are waiting eagerly for the next opportunity to jump on the Series X/S. So while that aspect may need to wait, everything on this list can be purchased today ensuring something can be under that tree come Christmas day!
Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate delivers a razor-sharp 4k image, with brief loading times thanks to the power of the new SSD in addition to a consistent and locked high framerate, making it the ideal choice for competitive play outside of perhaps the PC. Like the Switch version of MK11, thanks to the Dualsense controller, Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate feels excellent, with each attack and blow accompanied by a satisfying rumble that helps bring the game to life.
These moments of exhilaration are the result of a game benefiting from already excellent platforming mechanics paired with a great new combat system. Ori and the Will of the Wisps has already won me over, and I have a ton more game to play. Collectathons, painful platforming gauntlets, and a parade of cute forest critters await.
While the new Xbox Wireless Controller for the Xbox Series X/S feels much improved over past iterations, there is something to be said with playing games on the best controller possible, and that still is the Elite Series 2 Controller. Despite the cost, the Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 is one of the best controllers I have ever used. The improvements Microsoft has made address any concerns I had about past iterations, and the overall fit and finish make the controller a joy to hold and use. If you can look past the price tag, and demand only the best from your gaming accessories, give the Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 a look—you won’t be disappointed.
While standard USB hard drives will work on your new Xbox Series X/S, for any new games, and to see the true potential of what the new system can do, you will need to take advantage of the Seagate Storage Expansion Card. This little accessory is one of the most expensive offerings on the list, but it is also potentially the most useful. While loaded with a 1TB SSD, that new Xbox Series X will fill up quickly; and if you have the Series S, you are probably already needing to delete some old games. This is where the Seagate Storage Expansion Card comes into the picture. The little card plugs in the back, and gives you an extra 1TB of space at the speeds you expect from your new system. While costing over $200, this is an expensive offering; however, if you want the most out of your new system, and want to load more than 20 games at a time, this is a must-have for anyone who recently got themselves a new Xbox Series console.
The Wolverine was one of my favourite controllers for the Xbox One, and now with the Xbox Series X/S here, Razer has the Wolverine V2. While keeping what worked with the first iteration, this new controller brings notable improvements that make it a must own for serious players who demand only the best. Offering Mecha-Tactile Action Buttons and Mecha-Tactile D-Pad, and overall improved ergonomics, the Wolverine V2 delivers a fantastically comfortable and configurable controller to the Xbox landscape.
The buttons on the Wolverine V2 are the biggest selling point, offering a much more precise and tactile feeling input when compared to standard membrane buttons. Everything feels responsive, and notably faster, especially in split second input games such as Mortal Kombat Ultimate. With this being Razer, they did not stop there, offering up two programmable multi-function buttons, that can be remapped based on players needs. To round things off, the Wolverine V2 features a, “hair trigger” mode that triggers stop sliders for faster response while. While the standard Xbox Controller is a great offering, Razer has made one of the best controllers for people that demand the most accurate, comfortable and responsive offerings while gaming, especially on their new Xbox Series X/S.
In the past, inclusivity in games have been limited to some, especially modern console games that generally don’t allow the use of third-party adapters, something that has unfortunately made it hard or in some instances, impossible for those with a disability or impairment to partake in. Microsoft’s adaptive controller has now potentially opened the door to this dilemma, giving players the flexibility of the PC, minus the need for specialized drivers or additional software. The Xbox Adaptive control is Microsoft’s answer to an uncompromised experience to those who require it the most.
I highly recommend the SteelSeries Arctis 9 or, by extension, the other Arctis headsets, like its console specific counterparts, the Arctis 9P and 9X for next-gen consoles. The 9 is compatible with the PlayStation 5 and its 3D Audio, and it’s dissuaded me from buying Sony’s own Pulse headset someday.The Arctis 9 brought new life to my favourite games. Some small foibles don’t detract from its robust lossless audio, and its simultaneous wireless connections could change the way you game forever.
With the Xbox Series X/S console working with past headsets, you may already have everything you need—but for anyone looking, the Razer Kaira Pro is a fantastic and easy-to-use offering. With the ability to pair at the press of a button, and matching the sleek black and green aesthetic of the Xbox Series X/S; the Razer Kaira Pro is that new headset you did not know you needed. The Razer Kaira Pro sounds fantastic: providing rich, clear sound in all types of makes and media. The headset will last for 20 hours on a single charge, is comfortable to wear, even during long gaming sessions; and is Bluetooth-ready allowing for use with your PC or mobile phone with the flick of a switch. And for anyone only interested in audio, the microphone can be removed anytime it is not in use. For people who don’t need all the bells and whistles, the Razer also offers the Kaira that lacks the removable microphone and Bluetooth if you can live without these features, or want to save some money.
It pains me to see that the new Xbox Wireless Controller (2020) still lacks a built-in battery. But thankfully Microsoft has made this an easy thing to fix with their Rechargeable Battery + USB-C Charging Cable. While there is something easy about just loading in new AA batteries in a pinch, the Rechargeable Battery offers 30 hours on a single charge and is a breeze to set up. Just plug it in where you would load batteries, and the days of running to the store due to a dead controller are over. Built to last and a great alternative for people not wanting to cause excessive landfill waste, if you currently have the base Xbox Wireless Controller, do yourself a service and invest in the Xbox Rechargeable Battery.
So you have your new Xbox Series X/S and want to play some local multiplayer and want to know what the first accessory you should buy, it goes without saying you need a Xbox Wireless Controller (2020)—as this has been true since the dawn of multiplayer gaming. The Xbox Wireless Controller is a trusty controller that is built well, and offers all the features available on the new platform; and thanks to Bluetooth will work on mobile and PC with ease. There is something to say for how comfortable and versatile Microsoft have made this new controller offering. While it does still lack charging, and does not have the fancy features of the Elite, it is a great addition to any gaming setup, especially if you don’t already have an arsenal of controllers from your Xbox One.
I’m honestly not sure what I can say that will truly influence anyone as to just how good Halo: The Master Chief Collection is. If you’ve ever played Halo you’ll already know that a compilation of this magnitude is nothing short of epic. Not many games can be described as a true ‘must own’ without that exclamation being full of pomp and circumstance but this is one time where the statement genuinely rings true. If you own an Xbox One you MUST OWN Halo: The Master Chief Collection.
Sometimes it can be impossible to find that right gift for the Xbox Gamer on your list. For the gamer that has everything, or just hard to nail down, there is always the always safe Xbox/Microsoft gift card. Delivering dedicated amount made for Xbox means that most things they want to buy for their hobby are well within reach.
If you are buying for someone new to the Xbox ecosystem, the best addition is a subscription to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. This service combines Xbox Live Gold and their games library service, giving gamers a selection of more than 100 games ready to install and play as soon as you set up your new console. With two tiers, one offering PC and Xbox, and one just focusing on the Xbox platforms, it is hard to go wrong with a gift of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate to anyone in your life.
Gears Tactics combines the frenetic action of the Gears series with tactical gameplay that, barring a few stumbles, is refreshing. The pacing of a fight, and the myriad ways with which you can approach those encounters through skills and abilities, is invigorating. Gears Tactics successfully translates the ferocity of its third-person shooter brethren into a turn-based tactics game while retaining much of the strategy that makes the genre what it is.