And the winners are … Here are the titles that have left their mark in the year that is coming to an end on Microsoft consoles: Xbox One and Xbox Series X | S.
2022 seems to be looming as a great year, but the year that is drawing to a close was not joking at all. Between one postponement and another, both PlayStation and Xbox have defended themselves more than well, both in terms of quality and quantity of the releases proposed to their players. As for Xbox Series X|S e Xbox One, it was in particular the second half of the year that put a good number of high-level titles on the plate, with the launch of Halo Infinite just being celebrated, but not only.
Xbox: the best games of the year –
So here are the best video games of 2021 for Xbox, a list of the most important titles released this year for the platform Microsoft. Both exclusive and cross-platform productions are considered, both from Xbox Game Studios and from third parties, both included on Xbox Game Pass and detached from the acclaimed subscription of the American giant.
Halo Infinite —
Halo Infinite was the protagonist of an intense 2021 queue, first proposing its multiplayer, which reconciled fans with the saga after a couple of not too happy releases, and then a campaign based for the first time on the open world of Zeta Halo. The multiplayer captivated by the frenzy of the 4v4 matches and by the solidity of the golden triangle (weapon, grenade, melee) that immortalized him in the original trilogy. The single-player has gathered support for an open world with activities that are not too elaborate but satisfying for how they know how to enhance the combat system and never overwhelming in quantity. All without watering down the epic of the new story starring the Master Chief.
Forza Horizon 5 –
Forza Horizon 5 crystallizes the open world arcade racing formula elaborated from the previous chapter set in Great Britain and takes it to a new, very varied Mexican location. The Playground Games title is fast, in the way it gets you into the game and changes activities in a matter of seconds, but also deep, with a number of different cars and game situations that never get tired. Not forgetting the long tail of post-launch support, this year it really proved the potential of day one on Xbox Game Pass.
It Takes Two —
It doesn’t have the hard-boiled mature vibe and epic ending of A Way Out, but It Takes Two (awarded Video Game of the Year at The Game Awards 2021) clearly shows what it’s about. Josef Fares and his Hazelight are capable. The title of the Swedish software house boasts a colorful artistic direction and absurd game situations for a rare example of romantic comedy in gaming, in which you have to convince a couple close to divorce to get back together and resist the crazy monologues of a talking book. Microsoft console users can play it at no additional cost on Xbox Game Pass now.
Resident Evil Village —
Set on the basis of Resident Evil 7, which restored luster to a series that was a bit in trouble at the time, Resident Evil Village left the claustrophobic setting behind and, keeping the first-person view, explored a much more wide and charming. Capcom has focused on a cast of captivating supporting actors, one above all Lady Dimitrescu which drove the network crazy in the months preceding the release at the beginning of the year, and on a story capable of credibly linking back to the deepest origins of the saga. With gameplay that, despite the different perspective, will remind you of Resident Evil 4.
Psychonauts 2 —
Psychonauts 2 is the most familiar Double Fine Productions could make and, in proposing a title extremely close to the dictates of the progenitor, he couldn’t have made a better decision. Remaining themselves, Tim Schafer and his people manage to stand out even twenty years later, thanks to the peculiarities of the series and the lack of three-dimensional platformers in circulation. The rest do it open, varied and charismatic levels, hilarious characters and funny powers, for what it is one of the best titles available ever su Xbox Game Pass.
Mass Effect: Legendary Edition —
Mass Effect: Legendary Edition takes three of the best RPGs ever and remastered them without causing disasters, which in the two-year period 2020/2021 already looks like a great achievement in itself. While waiting for a new chapter to be made, announced just a handful of months ago as in an initial phase of production at what remains of the original team in BioWare, who has never played the epic of Commander Shepard can take advantage of higher resolution and frame rates, and a number of quality-of-life improvements that are particularly useful in the first episode. All in one package at a budget price.
Microsoft Flight Simulator —
More than a game, more than a service, a world. Or better, the world, fully explorable aboard any plane you like. Microsoft Flight Simulator has already been one of the best video games of 2020, but with its arrival on Xbox Series X | S (soon via cloud also on Xbox One) it is ready to give an encore. There is no doubt that it is better with joystick and pedal, and perhaps on an ultrawide screen on PC, but the adaptation on the console was of a high level and, thanks to the power of the new consoles, the physiological technical compromises were reduced to the minimum (which is not the equivalent setting on the master race).
Tales of Arise —
Tales of Arise demonstrates how, with a good dose of inventiveness, even the longest-running series can regain their lost enamel. The title of the Bandai Namco stable has rewritten the rules of the saga in an action RPG sense, freeing users from the constraints of more rigid turn-based role-playing games, proposing a multifaceted and well-motivated cast of good and bad, and deepening social and cultural issues that go far beyond the clichés of the genre. The gameplay outside the combat system would benefit from a little more depth but, if you were looking for a way to get closer to the Tales brand, you might have found it with the most modern and approachable chapter ever. Even more significant is the fact that, finally, it is also on Xbox.
Hades was already out in 2020 but, like Microsoft Flight Simulator, only got an Xbox version this year. A port embellished by the inclusion since day one on Xbox Game Pass, which has allowed many to recover one of the very few who managed to think about the title of GOTY The Last of Us Part II last year. The game (first to be recognized at the Hugo Award) is a roguelite with fierce and fast fighting, with many weapons and perks that continuously re-shape them, but also with a deep story that has its roots in a very original interpretation of Greek mythology . Like the genre or not, it’s worth trying.
The Ascent —
The Ascent è it cyberpunk RPG shooter to play in 2021. The shootings are action-packed and rewarding with both the controller and mouse and keyboard, the streets teem with neon and ocean crowds, and the universe and mythology on which the game’s stories rest they are profound (more than the particular story followed by the game, it must be said). The day one Xbox Game Pass inclusion and flashy graphics are a nice way to get the Isometric RPGs to a wider audience than the typical Wasteland and Fallout of yesteryear.
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