The most powerful console you can buy now is the Xbox One X, and it’s the primary gaming choice for multi-platform gaming for Mark Serrels, who wrote this article in its original form for cnet.
With what feels like most of the world on lockdown due to coronavirus, what more perfect time is there to fall into the world of a great video game? We’ve got a list of some of our favorite titles.
Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice by Activision
If you hang around on the forums, you’ll see plenty of chatter about the difficulty level of Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice. Irrespective of what’s been said, this is a gaming masterpiece from the people who brought us Dark Souls – From Software.
The same spark that made Dark Souls compelling is alive in Sekiro, yet it’s definitely a beast all of its own too. The distinction between this and the Souls series is even bigger than it was between Souls and Bloodborne. There’s a whole new skill set to learn in the form of parrying, and the painful lessons are definitely worth it.
If you’re looking for a game of 2020 already, this one should make the shortlist, at least.
Red Dead Redemption 2 by Rockstar Games
Could this be more obvious?
Rockstar hasn’t given us anything new for a while, but the wait was more than worthwhile when we got our hands on Red Dead Redemption 2. The details ooze out of the game. If you can get yourself through the slow start, you’ll fall into one of the greatest videogames ever produced.
Outer Wilds by Mobius Digital
This ever so slightly insane game, Outer Wilds, is going to be making game of the year lists, for sure. As an early contender for game of the year, Outer Wilds is just… insane. Your task is to uncover a weird sci-fi mystery encased in a real-life solar system, Outer Wilds is small and massively ambitious all at once.
You’re going to get jaw-dropping moments that are nonetheless organic and surprising in comparison to most games you’ll have played. This is very important; play the video game.
When it comes to visuals, Cuphead is going to strike you down. It has some of the best visual design you’ll ever have seen and it’s got a reputation as a super difficult game. What comes along with a reputation for extreme difficulty is an extremely rewarding feeling when you finally finish it. Get playing!
But mind your patience…
Destiny 2: Forsaken by Xbox
Destiny 2 wasn’t really highly anticipated. However, people were talking when the Forsaken expansion pack was announced. It’s brought back the excitement fans expect, whether they be casual or hardcore Destiny fans. If you’re one of those that walked away from Destiny 2 soon after you got it, you need to pick up Forsaken and rediscover the new world.
This game was very much a curveball.
No industry watcher was expecting Apex Legends. Although Fortnite ruled the gaming culture in 2018, Apex Legend is now challenging the Battle Royale genre, and with good reason too. The core people behind Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare also designed this one, as well as the more recent Titanfall series, and this game has a great feeling all the way through. This game isn’t going anywhere fast.
Assassin’s Creed Odyssey
Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is like a fine wine, it’ll need some space to breathe so that you can truly appreciate it. You’re going to be sitting through the opening credits for a good five hours, bed down! Get into the gameplay and you won’t want to leave. Want to know what a game designed by scores of people looks like? This is it; beautiful, huge, and perfected. As an open-world videogame, this is brilliantly made.
Ori and the Blind Forest
This game is a wonderfully glorious do-over of the game “Metroidvania” video game, including power-ups that will let you into new areas and challenges with it.
The visuals are gorgeous, they really get under the skin, and the controls feel like a dream. A definite modern classic.
Resident Evil 7
Resident Evil comes in cycles. Sometimes there’s bold innovation like in Resident Evil 1 and 4, and then they just kind of run with their achievements through some sequels and then come back with something invigorating again.
We’re definitely in the upwards curve with Resident Evil 7. It’s a relevant and essential game, the first from the makers in more than ten years. It’s a good game, a very good game.
Monster Hunter: World
Being “big in Japan” is an accolade in gaming, and Monster Hunter: World has it. Even for new audiences to the Monster World series, it’s fairly accessible.
As a place to start in the series, you can’t go far wrong, since all the previous games have only been on the Wii or handheld gaming units. Monster Hunter: World takes full advantage of the increase in computing ability with its first appearance on a top-of-the-line console.
Mortal Kombat 11 by NetherRealm Studios
This isn’t a 90s throwback, Mortal Kombat is still going strong. Gone are the days of Mortal Kombat being the pretender to Street Fighter II’s throne, it’s now come into its own and has unique strengths. Out of all the Mortal Kombat games, this one is definitely the best.
You don’t tend to see as much hype about games from the Gears of War series anymore. It’s a bit of a shame since Gears 5 is a definite return to the fine form of old. This was one of the best AAA, big-budget games to hit the market in 2019.
This is a brutal and compelling game. Inside’s ending is something that will be with you for the rest of your life, like it or not.
Get your hands on this game and play.
Halo 5: Guardians by 343 Industries
Halo was one of the most popular and culturally significant games of the mid-2000s. It might never reach those heady heights again, but you still get a very good game with Halo 5: Guardians. Things are even better if you’ve got a 4KTV and an Xbox One X.
From a story perspective, it’s not that solid, but the core loop of 30-second gameplay is still there, still as compelling, Fill your boots.
XCOM 2 by 2K Games
If you had a choice, you’d really want to play this game on a PC, but failing that, get stuck in on your Xbox One. If you’re looking for turn-based tactics in your videogames, XCOM2 is where you’ll find them.
Titanfall 2 by EA
For wholesale genre reinvention of the first-person shooter, look no further than Titanfall 2. This shooter, from the same creators as Call of Duty, pushes the boundaries of possibilities in gaming. You’ll never look at shooting stuff in the same way again.
Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain
It’s wholly possible to say that Metal Gear Solid V is one of the best open-world games made and be able to back up your argument. As a universe, it’s malleable and extremely responsive to what you put into it. There was internal politics at play between Konami and the creator Hideo Kojima that all got rather messy, but it doesn’t detract from the 40 hours of gameplay in a pitch perfect, open-world that you have to stealth your way through.
Don’t miss out.
Forza Horizon 3 by Microsoft
Gran Turismo’s racing crown fell many years ago and landed at the feet of Forza, they’ve picked it up and swaggered around with it ever since. Our new favorite is Forza Horizon 3, it’s playful and fun but still serious enough to engage serious rev heads.
It looks absolutely stunning to boot.
The Witcher 3 by CD Projekt Red
To call The Witcher 3 the best game of it’s generation isn’t an outlandish position. You may land at Breath of the Wild or Bloodborne instead, but you’ll have got there by way of this game, for sure.
And you should still return to The Witcher 3.
The writing is really standout too, making The Witcher 3 something of a gaming unicorn.
Rise of the Tomb Raider
Back in the day, Rise of the Tomb Raider was a pretty cool game exclusive to be playing on your Xbox. It’s also available on the PlayStation 4 now, but its true home will always be on the Xbox One.
If you’re looking for an experience akin to Uncharted for your Xbox One, this is as close as you’ll get, and that very good indeed.
This video game is bizarre, wild, and pretty spectacular too. Control was born out of ambition and is one of the big-budget games you want to be watching this year. If you’re into Twin Peaks and X-Files, this is a game for you.
Yes, the game that spawned the meme, Doom is back. When you’re looking to get to kill baddies at super close range, and want the satisfaction of spilling demon guts all over every surface in range, you’re in luck.
You need to be playing Doom.
Dark Souls 3
Sad about not playing Bloodborne on your Xbox One? Dark Souls 3 will get you pretty darn close.
The company From Software hasn’t yet put a foot wrong with their games, and within the “Souls” cannon, Dark Souls 3 is up near the top. What’s already up there is pretty exceptional, so it’s in good company.
You might not think that Souls games would be for you, but you should still give Dark Souls 3 a shot.
This video game, from the same team that brought you Braid, is completely out of left-field.
When it comes to puzzle games, The Witness is something the Super Metroid of the genre.
You have a whole universe to unlock at your fingertips, but there’s no need for power-ups to make progress, you just need to power-up your mental agility. Doesn’t sound fun? It actually is, when you take into account the great design it’s definitely unique among video games.
Overwatch by Blizzard Entertainment
Fortnite and PUBG are smashing Overwatch over the head in terms of appealing to the mainstream, but there is still a huge and loyal audience that comes back each night.
Blizzard seems to be gifted at making very compelling games that grab you on every level.
If Team Fortress was your bag back in the day, this is where your gaming should be at. Fan of online shooters? This is also the place to be.
Try it out.
Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus by Bethesda
Subtitle they forgot to include – Punching Nazis: The Video Game.
Over the last couple of years, if you’re thinking which was the most culturally relevant AAA video game to hit the market, you’re going to wind up at Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus. The writing is very good, the sequencing is natural, and you just need to give it a good play.
What Remains of Edith Finch by Gamespot
This one is a story-focussed game that is similar in style to games like Gone Home or Dear Esther, yet it’s unique too.
In the same way that those games are driven by narrative, What Remains of Edith Finch has an effect on your soul, even if it is a little short. That’s not always a bad thing, and you can get through the whole game in one session.
Rocket League by Nintendo
Soccer and cars go together only in very high concept gaming circles. It’s an idea that can’t really find errors.
The execution is perfect, the idea is sublime.
Resident Evil 2 by Capcom
For a remake, this is one of the best video games ever. It perfectly captures the spirit of the original game yet there’s nothing that dates it or makes it feel clunky. As a piece of nostalgia, it works well, but you don’t have to know the original to find this game engaging. It’s great reworking or a game you’re hard-pressed to find anymore.