Xbox One X hits the spot

I’m writing this as a 40-year old. An age I never thought I’d get to (because 40 is ancient, right?) and yet somehow a month of being 40 has passed in the blink of an eye. I’ll be 50 before I know it, which is even scarier.

This may seem like an odd way to start this post but it’s a slight bit of background as to how I came into possession of an Xbox One X; my parents bought me one. Isn’t that awesome? 40-years old and they have accepted that gaming isn’t a fad of mine but my actual, genuine hobby. There’s hope for us all.

Question is: is the console really that powerful? Can it really live up to the hype? Does it boost games as much as they say?

The answer, in short, is effin’ hell yes.

In the past I’ve written about my preference for framerate, or more precisely lack of slowdown, over graphical fidelity but now I’m in the privileged position of being able to have both. Microsoft have been very clever and made sure all of their first-party games are enhanced for the console and it really shows, especially as I have a 4K television to get the best out of the machine. I’m also comparing against an Xbox One S, not an original Xbox One.

Cleverly, and as with some titles for the PlayStation 4 Pro, you can choose whether the Xbox will prioritise graphics or performance. If I’m honest I’ll go for performance every time because once I’m playing I can’t really tell the difference in how realistic a wall looks but the smoothness in how everything moves is noticeable.

The only difference to this is Forza Horizon 4, which goes from looking like the real thing in graphics mode to looking almost like the real thing but smoother in performance. Either way it’s absolutely mindblowing when you’re old enough to remember when games like Pit Fighter and Mortal Kombat sold themselves on photorealistic character models back in the nineties. I can’t wait to see how Mortal Kombat 11 looks on this beast of a machine.

That’s not the only one though: Gears of War 4’s campaign now runs at 60fps and looks stunning. I’m slowly playing through it again because it’s really that good. Halo 5 is mindblowing and I’ve already mentioned Forza.

But these are all Microsoft-published games, first-party products that you’d expect to use the technology to the max. What about third-party offerings? Well, I’ve had a chance to look at two so far and – thanks to Game Pass – will be able to try a few more in the coming weeks. What I can say is that Destiny 2 looks sharper and more crisp but the real difference is with The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. In performance mode it runs gloriously and leaves the PS4 for dust.

The best part though is how quietly it runs. I love the PS4 Pro but on the more demanding games the fan is so loud I can’t hear the television! The Xbox One X? Quiet as a mouse.

If you have a 4K TV (and the means to afford the console) I heartily recommend you take the plunge. I feel it would be a harder sell if you don’t have the TV as yes, silky smooth gameplay is lovely but not £450 lovely.

Long story short: I’m chuffed to bits with the kit and if you’re able to get your hands on one, I think you will be too.

10 thoughts on “Xbox One X hits the spot

  1. I’ve heard nothing but good things about the Xbox One X’s performance, particularly with how well it handles the older games that have been updated for “backward compatibility”. (And I use that term loosely, but that’s a whole other discussion!)

    The reason I haven’t taken the plunge on one is quite simply that there still aren’t any games for Xbox One that interest me that I can’t already get for PS4. Well, I tell a lie, I’m mildly interested in Forza Horizon, but Gears, Halo and all that kind of thing? Not my wheelhouse at all. I like my JRPGs, and it’s PS4 and Switch where that need gets met.

    In some ways I think it’s good that the different consoles are specialising and catering to different markets, but at the same time it makes me a little sad that this will likely be the first console generation where I haven’t owned every major platform at one point or another!

    Liked by 2 people

    • It was Gears that swung it for me. I bought an Gears SE Xbox One S when 4 came out (I love the murderous meatheads) and used it for all of the Xbox first party games. I play online on PS4 because that’s what my mates own but the power of the X is such I’m going to get all the multi-platform single player stuff on it now.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Hey Ben, great post! I agree with you about Xbox One X being a more superior console when it comes to graphics and performance. It’s even great with a 4K TV. The only thing standing between Xbox One X and someone interested in it is the budget. Very helpful post. Thank you so much.

        @Pete Xbox One X also has awesome JRPGs. Have you tried Lost Odyssey, Dark Souls III, Ys Origin, Monster Hunter World, Final Fantasy XV.and my all-time favorite Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen?


        • Budget is key. If you don’t already own an Xbox and have a 4K TV I say go for it. Don’t forget you can get 100+ games (including almost all first party stuff) on Gamepass for £8ish a month.


  2. My only real issue with the one X is if you do not have a 4K t.v. there is no real reason to buy one. Sure it does perform better regarldess but at its price, it isn’t worth it without the 4K. With a 4K however, it truly is the most powerful home console.


    • I agree – a 4K TV is a must if you want to get the full potential out of it but if framerate is a big issue for you there is still the performance boost even on non-4K output. Of course, it’s a big lump of money to spend just for 60fps…!


  3. Microsoft are killing it with Game Pass and the One X in my opinion. I own both “enhanced” consoles and the PS4 pretty much never gets turned on. No 4K Blu-ray player either, really Sony? I prefer the visual improvements over frame rate, I’m primarily a PC gamer but consoles have warmed me up to the 30fps and stunning visuals. I can live with it for the most part. Rise of the Tomb Raider looks incredible at native 4K even at 30fps.

    I have high hopes for the next generation of (all) consoles and cloud services, I think they’re going to be something pretty special! There’s never been a better time to be into video games!


    • Game Pass is absolutely fantastic, I’m playing so much stuff on it. I think it will be the norm in the next generation. We’ll pay £30-£40 a month and get access to every single game, and full online play.

      I’m a sucker for 60fps. I can live without the uber-realistic-mega-ultra graphics so long as it’s silky smooth and with no slowdown.


  4. Agree with the thoughts on Game Pass, a fantastic services, a must if you’re into….anything really. I’ve been a fan of the Forza games since the first and was prepared to pay for the latest, but having it on Game Pass means a VIP membership was all I needed to outlay in the first instance to get my hands on it.

    As a fellow……..senior? gamer, I approve of the Xbox One X! Nice post.


    • Thank you! I can honestly see in the next five years paying £20 a month and being given access to every Xbox game on the next system. It’s the way forward (for the consumer at least).


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