Xbox Series S

If you’re looking for a current-gen console this year, you might be hard-pressed to find yourself a PS5. After agonizing months of searching, a few Half-Glass Gaming staff members were able to acquire Sony’s newest console. However, in the interim, a few of us (myself included) picked up the much easier-to-find Xbox Series S.

Now that I’ve had some time to mess around with the Series S, I have to say that it’s a really great console. I try to stay out of any console war stuff, because I just like games, no matter which console they end up on. But even so, I do tend to gravitate toward Sony’s consoles over Microsoft’s — maybe it’s because the PSOne was such a huge part of solidifying my taste in video games back in the late 1990s.

I tend to go to Nintendo second. If Sony’s having an off year, I usually find myself picking up tons of games on whatever Nintendo’s current console is. And I love the Switch dearly.

That means I don’t spend as much time with my Xbox consoles. While I don’t have any animosity for those consoles, I just prioritize them below PlayStation and Nintendo consoles. In fact, I completely skipped the Xbox One in favor of the PS4 and the Switch, and I very recently got rid of my Xbox 360 because it’s the one gaming console I own that I never once hooked up since the last time I moved — and I’ve been living in my current apartment for more than six years now.

So it really was on a whim that I ended up picking up an Xbox Series S. I’d already acquired a PS5 by that point, but I found a Series S at Target and figured I’d pick it up to see what it’s all about.

My honest opinion is that if you’re not a hardcore gaming enthusiast and you’re looking to enter the new generation of gaming consoles, you should get a Series S. Don’t worry about the X, and don’t waste precious hours of your life getting into queues for the PS5. Just get the S. It’s a really good console.

Halo Infinite

But the thing that really makes this thing shine is the Game Pass Ultimate lineup. Yes, Game Pass is a subscription you’ll pay on top of the price of your console, but if you want to play anything online, a subscription fee is inevitable. The good news is that Game Pass Ultimate is absolutely astonishing. There are currently over 100 games available on it, and all of them are included in your subscription fee. Yes, you get over 100 games for subscribing. This almost feels like the Netflix of video games.

I was able to scratch my open-world racing itch with Forza Horizon 4. I was able to get highly anticipated indie titles Sable and Aragami 2 at launch, without having to buy them. I had Half-Glass Gaming’s Morgan crash at my apartment for a few weeks, and she spent a whole bunch of time with Wreckfest and Wasteland 3, without having to pay for them.

I’m not the biggest Halo fan (though I’ve definitely played several entries in the series), but Halo Infinite‘s day-one-on-Game-Pass status means I’ll actually be playing it when it comes out. I don’t have to buy it, so there’s no reason to not at least check it out for a few hours.

And the real kicker is that I already had a Game Pass subscription, because I picked up a gaming laptop this year and I figured I’d try out Microsoft’s subscription service for a while. I expected to be kind of “meh” about my options, but I ended up being absolutely blown away.

Xbox Series S

Now look, I know that I sound like I’m just shilling for Microsoft here. What you need to understand is that the Xbox family tends to perpetually be my last resort in the gaming landscape. While I prefer the first-party lineup on PlayStation and Nintendo consoles, I can’t deny true value when I see it. And Game Pass is one heck of a value.

So if you’re just looking to play games, and you don’t have any baked-in loyalty to any family of consoles, I highly recommend the Xbox Series S and a Game Pass subscription. The Series S is both cheaper and easier to find than the PS5, it’s more powerful than the Switch by a landslide, and the Game Pass lineup is a bonkers good deal. It’s honestly a no-brainer.

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