I like the idea of the Xbox One X. I think despite Microsoft’s marketing pitch of this being a mid-generation refresh, the Xbox One X is a next-gen device that just so happens to be backwards compatible. It’s also a console for show-offs, people who want to boast about their 4K setups and do some visual bragging about having the best looking gaming experience.
That being said, the Xbox One X is a niche device. It’s a machine for a certain market, while also requiring some faith from those people who splash cash down on it. That seems to be the running theme in reviews for the hardware-heavy console, as opinions on the actual tech is overwhelmingly positive so far.
Good tech can only go so far however, as it’ll be up to developers to help support the Xbox One X. For those players who do receive enhanced games on that console however? The Xbox One X appears to be an absolute beast of a machine. Here’s a roll-out of what some critics and sites have had to say so far:
The Xbox One X is a very impressive collection of hardware crammed into a sleek case. It runs cool and quiet as it delivers impressive performance in the enhanced games we’ve been able to test out so far. It’s hard to believe Microsoft exclusives like Gears of War 4 can look so good and run so smoothly on a box that costs less than half of what you’d pay for a high-end gaming PC. Plus, it caters to home theater enthusiasts with 4K ultra-HD Blu-ray playback and Atmos sound.
However, the big question of how it compares to the PlayStation 4 Pro in running third-party games remains, for now, unanswered. We won’t know for sure until those enhanced updates come out around the November 7 launch, but if I had to score it now…
That said, the X does offer the best graphics currently possible on a console. If you don’t care about Sony’s exclusives then the Xbox One X will be the best console to play all the cross-platform games coming out. If you already have a large stack of Xbox One games and you’re using the original console, this is going to be a nice upgrade if you own a 4K TV.
For anyone else, this probably isn’t the console for you. Sony really has some impressive exclusives on the way, and it’s hard for Microsoft to counter this despite its great job on the hardware. Microsoft promised the best hardware, and it delivered — but that’s nothing without games.
I already mentioned the other group that I would suggest an Xbox One X to: people who don’t already own an Xbox One and want to buy one.
For everyone else, I think you need to wait and see. At least let me try games like Star Wars: Battlefront II and Call of Duty: WWII with the system so I can finalize this review. But beyond that, you need to see if Microsoft or outside developers find innovative ways to use the power of the Xbox One X. Because if they don’t, your original Xbox One is fine.
The honest truth right now is that I can’t tell you if it’s worth the money, but if you don’t own an Xbox One, then this is the console to get. If you have a 1080p TV, you’ll still be getting the best performance, and for my money, finally getting a console that appears to be able to push 60 frames across the board is a far bigger deal than the jump from 1080p to 4K resolution. Sure, you’ve got the best of both worlds if you do have a 4K HDR capable TV, but it’s the potential draw of the higher frame rate that impresses.
US Gamer – No score
Put simply: The Xbox One X is a pretty niche offering. It’s nice that it exists, but it’s hard to recommend without reservation. That said, the ability to run a game natively in 4K at a solid framerate is nothing to sneeze at—it’s something that even strong gaming PCs still struggle with. In that light, you might say that $500 is a bargain given that Microsoft is also tossing in a 4K UHD Blu-ray player.
The best recommendation I can give is that I will be requesting review copies for the Xbox One from now on. After all, now that I actually have an Xbox One X in my house, I’m inclined to put my expensive 4K TV to good use. But if you’re still undecided on which premium console to choose, just know that I would personally choose the console with the widest selection of exclusives. All those teraflops are impressive; but in the end, it’s still all about the games.
The Xbox One X will be available in December on our shores, although stock is expected to be limited for its initial run.
Last Updated: November 3, 2017