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The crossover between gearheads and gamers is growing every day. Professional race car drivers develop their chops digitally before ever stepping foot onto certain tracks thanks to racing simulators like iRacing. Entertainers like T-Pain are simultaneously diving into both automotive and gaming ventures. We even see the overlap firsthand on our very own livestreams, where car enthusiasts of all ages from around the world join us to talk about not only their favorite cars, but also their favorite racing and driving games. Because of all the hype, we wanted to create a place on Autoblog to talk about the gaming news of the week, and how it might relate to the automotive world (and for any parents out there, we’ll try to help you make sense of some of the madness.) Enter: Autoblog‘s Gaming Roundup. Let’s dive in.
- Am I nuts or does the Xbox Series S look like a ridiculously good deal?
You are definitely not nuts. Prices and release dates officially dropped this week for the new Xbox consoles, and by all accounts, they’re pretty impressive. The consoles are dropping on November 10 this year. The Series X (the higher-end console) is officially priced at the lower end of predictions at $499, while the Series S (the budget console) shattered expectations by debuting at a ludicrously low $299. That makes the Series S by far the most affordable way to play your favorite racing games on the next generation of consoles.
The best part about it is that there are relatively few compromises to get the price down. The biggest ones are resolution, storage space, and a disc drive (if you care about that kind of thing). The Series X can play games in 4K and the Series S can “only” play games at a 1440p resolution (but can be upscaled to 4K). The other big difference is that the Series X comes standard with 1TB of SSD storage, while the Series S comes in with a somewhat disappointing 512GB. And lastly, of course, the Series S doesn’t have a disc drive. For the cost savings though, and considering how cheap external drives are nowadays, the Series S is still, for my money, an unbelievable deal.
Now the question is, are the good people at Sony panicking? They inexplicably still haven’t released the PS5 pricing. Hopefully we’ll have more to come on that next week.
- Speaking of Xbox love, how much better is Gamepass now that they’re ingesting the EA Play library of games?
SO much better, and it was already pretty awesome. If you’re unaware, Gamepass is basically Microsoft’s version of Netflix for games. You pay a monthly subscription and get access to 100+ great titles. EA Games has a similar service that they run independently called EA Play, featuring some of the biggest EA-made hits. Well, coming this holiday, all of the EA Play titles are coming to Gamepass for no extra charge. It’s quite the collab.
That means that if you’re a Gamepass subscriber, you’ll have access to games like NFS Heat, NFS Rivals, Need For Speed, Burnout Paradise Remastered, Skate 3, and some little-known series by the names of Madden and FIFA for no extra cost. So, you know, no big deal or anything.
- Is my copy of Forza Horizon 4 really getting upgraded for the Series S and Series X?
You could get pretty semantic-y here about what an “upgrade” really is, but the answer is essentially yes! This will be one of the games that is Series S/X “enhanced.” The game is the same, but if you have a Series S or Series X, it will look and perform much better on that console than if you were to play it on a last-gen One S or One X. Think of it like the higher-powered/newer consoles being able to unlock more graphical fidelity from the game. The game is being “optimized” for the Xbox Series… series. Ugh. Have we talked about how dumb these names are yet? The upgrade will be available at launch for the new consoles at no extra cost if you already own the game.
- Are the new updates for The Crew 2 worth checking out?
The Crew 2 is a 2018 racing game that’s still getting regular updates. Unfortunately, this game totally passed me by, so I don’t have much firsthand experience, but I do know that the new updates look pretty exciting, and it might be a decent time to jump in. Let me know in the comments if you’d like to see us try this game on our Tuesday and Thursday Twitch livestreams. You can check out all of the updates on the game in the video below.