7 Reasons You Shouldn’t Buy an Xbox Series X/S
There’s never been a better time to be a gamer. Studios large and small are constantly publishing astonishing games, pushing the boundaries of what a video game can be. But where’s best to play the games? How about on Microsoft’s Xbox Series S/X?
If you are considering spending your money on an Xbox Series S/X, you may want to pause. While it’s undoubtedly a powerful machine, it might not be the console for you. Or you might at least want to wait a bit.
Here are all the reasons you shouldn’t buy an Xbox Series S/X.
1. There Are No Console Exclusives
Microsoft didn’t begin life as a video game company. Chances are, your first introduction to Microsoft was through its Windows operating system, which still goes strong to this day. If you want to game on a computer, you use Windows—gaming support for other systems like Mac or Linux are a rarity.
For a while, Microsoft’s first-party PC gaming support sucked as the company focused on the Xbox console. The thought of Games for Windows Live (a gaming client and DRM service in one) brings PTSD to many. Thankfully, the situation is different now. That’s because every Microsoft game releases on Xbox and PC simultaneously, which is fantastic.
But it begs the question: why buy an Xbox? A gaming PC is always going to be more powerful than an Xbox. You can play all the same games and use Xbox Game Pass. You can still use an Xbox controller if you want. All of that and the flexibility that a gaming PC brings.
2. Proprietary Expandable Storage
The Xbox Series S has 512GB of internal storage, while the Series X has 1TB (real storage is lower, as some is reserved for the system). Both consoles use the same blazing fast SSD, developed specifically for Microsoft’s console.
However, you’ll likely find that you fill up the drive in no time, even on the beefier 1TB, since so many modern games have large storage footprints.
On the PS5, it’s easy to expand the storage. You can even add an M.2 SSD to your PS5. On the Xbox, it’s a different story. You have to use the proprietary Seagate expansion card. While you can use other external storage for older games, those optimized for the Xbox Series S/X must use Seagate’s device.
Though Microsoft says other manufacturers will have their own versions eventually, it hasn’t happened yet, which means you’re stuck with the expensive Seagate SSD.
3. It Doesn’t Support VR
While virtual reality is still a niche way to play games, it’s a growing concern. Many great innovations and exciting projects are emerging from the VR world. But you won’t be able to play them on the Xbox Series S/X.
According to Xbox boss Phil Spencer, he thinks it’s better that the company focuses on software because it will scale better long-term. In the past, he’s called VR “isolating”.
Sony take an entirely different approach, with the PlayStation VR2 showing its commitment to the VR world. Sony is even building exclusive VR experiences from its top franchises, like Horizon Call of the Mountain.
4. The PS5 Has Better Games
This is a controversial one, and ultimately comes down to personal preference, but many would agree that Sony simply have better exclusive games. Franchises like Spider-Man, Ratchet and Clank, The Last of Us, Uncharted, and Horizon can only be played on the PlayStation.
As mentioned, the Xbox doesn’t strictly have exclusives, but franchises like Gears of War and Halo don’t have quite the same allure they once did.
That said, the scales could easily tip over time as the current generation consoles mature. Microsoft has acquired Activision and a plethora of other talented developers, and will no doubt build a solid arsenal of exclusive games.
5. The Xbox Series S Is Underpowered
Microsoft’s console comes in two flavors: the Xbox Series S and the Xbox Series X. You’d be forgiven for thinking there’s not much between them, since Sony also has two versions of the PS5 that are technically identical apart from the disc drive.
However, things aren’t the same with the Xbox Series S/X. The Series S has less RAM and storage, can only achieve 1440p as opposed to 4K, runs the processor slower, and only plays digital games. In short, it’s a nerfed console and not the true next-generation experience you crave.
6. The Controller Lacks Innovation
The Xbox controller is fantastic, which is why Microsoft didn’t change it much for the Xbox Series S/X. It did get some improvements over its predecessor, though—it’s nicer to hold, has textured triggers, and has a better d-pad.
But some innovation would have been welcome to make it really stand out. When you compare it to Sony’s DualSense, which features a touchpad, haptic feedback, and built-in mic, the Xbox Wireless Controller seems a tad outdated.
7. Wait for the Next Iteration
The Xbox One released in 2013. Three years later came the Xbox One S, a sleeker and more powerful console. If you owned the original, you either stuck with the bulkier and outdated tech, or paid full price for an upgrade.
The same thing will happen with the Xbox Series S/X. Microsoft will find a way to make the console smaller; perhaps in different colors too. Considering the company is struggling to produce enough consoles to meet demand due to the global chip shortage, and so you probably can’t find one in stock anyway, you can afford to wait.
Should You Buy an Xbox Series S/X?
While these might seem like big issues to some people, perhaps they’re irrelevant to you. If that’s the case, excellent. The Xbox Series S/X is a powerful machine and it’s only going to get better in time. May you have many hours of happy gaming ahead of you.
For everyone else, it’s time to consider whether the PS5, Nintendo Switch, or a powerful PC will be your next gaming home.
Our PS5 vs. Xbox Series X comparison will help you pick the right console based on games, price, design, and other factors.
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