2023 is a surprisingly big year for Microsoft. After multiple years of jokes players have gotten their hands on first-party exclusive titles like Starfield. This, coupled with some big additions to Xbox Game Pass have changed the game for many players out there. Still, if you want to expand their experience we have a few suggestions to consider.
Xbox Holiday Gift Guide 2023
Xbox Game Pass Ultimate
At this point it goes without saying Xbox Game Pass Ultimate is a fantastic value. Not only does it include Xbox Game Pass Core (formerly Xbox Live Gold), which is needed to play online, it includes a vast array of games to download and play.
For $16.99 a month, players get the aforementioned Xbox Game Pass Core, plus the ability to play every Xbox Game Studio game for free, during the duration of your subscription. In addition to that, it includes deals, partner offers, EA Play, plus access to hundreds of other games to enjoy.
Now more than ever is this the way to go since it includes Starfield. The highly anticipated title is rather divisive in the community. Some love it, others hated it instantly, with plenty eventually finding themselves underwhelmed with the experience. Still, if someone is on the fence it’s the best way to experience it relatively risk free. This holds true for Redfall, though that remains in a rather rough state, plus countless other titles to make the transition worth it.
Resident Evil 4 (Remake)
Resident Evil 4 is arguably the best survival horror game, which we’re delighted to say the remake does justice to. Not only does it look amazing, things were refined to the point where it’s a slam dunk. Given the DLC recently released it’s a great time to give it a go.
Baldur’s Gate 3
Baldur’s Gate 3 is easily the year’s biggest surprise. The unexpected hit is a strong game of the year contender, has a ton of players getting lost in the adventure, and even Grant’s girlfriend swooning over Astarion. At this point the experience has not landed on Xbox, but it is set to sometime next month. However, if you want to go all in there is a lovely Deluxe Edition releasing early next year. Not the best to give an IOU, though in this case I think many would make an exception.
XGIMI’s Horizon is a fantastic projector to pair with a number of Xbox devices. Not only can it make the most of Xbox One titles, it pairs really well with Xbox Series S. It’s a fantastic projector if you’re upgrading your gaming set up, without going a more traditional route.
Seagate Storage Expansion Card for Xbox Series X|S
As our only Xbox Series exclusive product, the Seagate Storage Expansion Card is perhaps one of the simplest and most useful accessories for the new consoles. Instead of a complicated installation or confusing details, players can simply buy between 512 GB and 2 TB of storage for their new console. This is incredibly helpful with some games easily using 100 or more GB of data. Especially in the case of Call of Duty, and the unfortunate install of Modern Warfare III regardless of whether you purchase it or not.
Xbox Design Lab Controller
Xbox Design Lab is perhaps one of the coolest things Microsoft offers that very few players even know about. Instead of forcing players to stick with conventional colors like black, white, blue, red, or if you’re feeling daring grey, Xbox Design Lab allows players to make their own controller from a wide variety of options.
Options include front, back, triggers, thumbstick, and even engraving. While it costs a little bit more than a normal controller, with some notable disadvantages like not being returnable, it’s a personalized gift that really isn’t much more than a normal controller.
NACON Revolution X Pro Controller
In addition to Microsoft’s solution, NACON has their own take on a pro controller. While it is, unfortunately, wired, the controller boasts some killer features at an incredibly reasonable price. This makes it perfect for someone who wants to step up their game, without destroying their budget.
Xbox X|S and Xbox One Power Swap Controller Batteries
Microsoft sticking with batteries is one of the more divisive topics for the platform. Despite not being as simple as Sony and Nintendo’s internal rechargeable batteries, the ability to always have power can be invaluable to some gamers. A common counterargument is the benefit of rechargeable batteries. Otterbox took this a step further with their Power Swap controller system.
The small docking station allows players to quickly insert and use a battery while the other is charging. It isn’t the first or only of the kind, there have been many over the years, though the Power Swap system is one of the nicer looking setups for anyone concerned with how their gaming area looks.
Astro’s A20 is one of the most unique headsets on the market. Instead of focusing on sound quality, interesting features, look, or any of that, it’s one of the very few wireless headsets that works on both Xbox and PlayStation.
For a while, this has been an unfortunate compromise. Get a wireless headset that works for everything besides Xbox or opt for an Xbox-specific one. Astro simplified the process by still using dedicated Xbox and PlayStation looks and branding, with an additional purchasable dongle. Perfect for anyone looking for wireless on both platforms.
Maxwell is Audeze’s attempt to correct the mistakes they made with Penrose. The improved headset has turned a number of heads, along with such good buzz Audeze struggles to stock them. Even if you need to deal with backorder to get them they’re an option seriously worth exploring as they’re one of the best gaming headsets currently on the market.
Bang & Olufsen Beoplay Portal
B&O’s Beoplay Portal is another attempt to have a premium headset available on the Xbox platform. Even if the original price of $500 didn’t win anyone over, remaining inventory can routinely be purchased for around $150. For that price it’s legitimately one of the hardest headsets to beat. Especially if you’re all in on the Microsoft side of things.