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Three Things to get Excited About in Gaming This Fall

The remaining months of 2020 have some exciting things happening in the gaming world. Below we break down a few of them! The big news of the month revolved around the imminent release of both Sony and Microsoft’s next-gen consoles. After both companies played coy about their pricing for most of 2020, a series of leaks pushed Microsoft to unveil the details on the upcoming Xbox Series X and its digital-only counterpart, the Series S. Shortly afterward, Sony held an official broadcast to the reveal of the price and upcoming games associated with the PlayStation 5 and the PlayStation 5 Digital Edition. Who’s done a pre-order yet?!

Here are some key dates to upcoming things to get excited about in gaming:

Extra Life Game Day — November 7:

Extra Life Game Day is November 7, 2020, just a few days before the new consoles will hit the market! While Game Day has been an annual tradition, the rules of fundraising for Extra Life aren’t set in stone. You can fundraise for Extra Life all year round! If you want to wait a few extra days to pick up a new console to incorporate the latest tech and games into your marathon stream or gameplay or break up your stream or day of play into more manageable chunks to cap it off with some PS5 or Xbox Series X action, we are behind you 100%. Make your fundraising efforts work for you whether digital or analog and don’t stress out too much. Learn more about Game Day and how you can help change kids’ health, change the future: register here. Already registered? Great! Here are some best practices to help you make the most out of your fundraising.

Xbox Series X – November 10 – Series S: $299.99 USD, Series X: $499.99 USD:

Microsoft’s new flagship console, the Xbox Series X promises to be a leap for console gaming. It offers faster load times, a handy quick resume feature, HDMI 2.1, frame rates that hit 120fps, and will be the first console capable of raytracing to enhance games with more realistic lighting effects. Both the disc-based Series X and the digital-only Series S will be capable of the same feats despite the price difference.  Additionally, online support for the Series machines will come with a built-in library of over 100 games.

Monthly payments make the launch of the Series X and Series S particularly unique. Customers will be able to take advantage of monthly payment plans that change the cost of the Series S to $24.99 USD per month for 24 months and the Series X to $34.99 USD per month for 24 months. This payment structure also includes access to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, a service that normally costs $14.99 USD per month. That will grant players access to online multiplayer, a growing library of over 100 games, and access to said library on PC and Android devices.

Those who purchase the console all at once will still need to fork over $14.99 USD per month in order to get the perks of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. The service will be getting a welcome addition this holiday season, too. Microsoft has teamed up with EA for a partnership that will grant Ultimate members access to over 60 of EA’s biggest games for no additional cost.

Both versions of the console tout Microsoft’s commitment to backward compatibility. The company has stated that the next-gen Xbox will be able to play all Xbox One releases with the exception of games reliant on the Kinect accessory. This explicitly includes all Xbox 360 and original Xbox titles that were supported by the Xbox One.

Curious about what’s going to be available at launch? Here are just a few announced so far: Gears Tactics, Tetris Effect: Connected, Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, and Watch Dogs: Legion.

PlayStation 5 – November 12 – Digital Edition: $399.99 USD, With Disc Drive: $499.99 USD:

Much like the Xbox Series X and Series S, the PlayStation 5 comes in a flagship model and a digital-only model. The PlayStation 5 and PlayStation 5 Digital Edition both sport the same internal hardware, a custom CPU and GPU designed for 4K graphics and raytracing support, and a specialized ultra-high-speed Solid State Drive.

The games available at launch include Astro’s Playroom, Destruction All Stars, Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales (and an associated Ultimate Edition), Sackboy A Big Adventure, and Demon’s Souls. Additional third party titles like Call of Duty Black Ops: Cold War, GodFall, and Just Dance 2021 will also launch on the console, though all launch titles from third parties have yet to be confirmed. At their reveal event, Sony showcased PS5 exclusive games that are still a ways off including Devil May Cry 5 Special Edition, Final Fantasy XVI, Five Nights at Freddy’s Security Breach, Hogwarts Legacy, Horizon Forbidden West, and an untitled God of War game.

As exciting as all of these were, the online library available at launch appears a bit thin compared to its competition. To answer Microsoft’s EA-Xbox Game Pass bundle, Sony is launching the PlayStation Plus Collection feature for PlayStation 5 consoles. Essentially, the service allows PS Plus subscribers access to a library of 15 curated titles. Currently, the games on offer include the following: God of War, The Last of Us: Remastered, Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, Battlefield 1, Monster Hunter World, Fallout 4, Final Fantasy XV, The Last Guardian, Ratchet and Clank, Infamous: Second Son, Days Gone, Bloodborne, Detroit: Become Human, Batman Arkham Knight, Mortal Kombat X, Persona 5, Until Dawn, and Resident Evil 7: Biohazard.

For those who would prefer to play PlayStation 4 for a while longer, many of the games available on PlayStation 5 will also be released for PlayStation 4. Each of these versions will upgrade to their PlayStation 5 equivalents whenever players decide to make the leap. However, it should be noted that a game bought physically for the PlayStation 4 only upgrades when played physically on the PlayStation 5, meaning that those who rely on physical releases will want to save for the disc-based PS5.

An important note: PlayStation 5 games are expected to range in cost from $49.99 to $69.99. A bit more budgeting might be required, so make sure you think ahead!

Don’t forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games!