Last week I offered up a list of great PlayStation gamer gifts. Xbox gamers that were green with envy don’t need to feel left out in the cold, as this week your Christmas list is getting some love. Of course, everyone wants a new Xbox Series X and a few of you may even find one under the tree in a couple of weeks, so I won’t even waste my time adding that to this list. I’m also way more familiar with the Xbox One compared to the PlayStation 4 so there are more hardware related gifts on this list. All those little knick-knacks like coffee mugs and lighting can be found in Xbox variants, so check out last week’s PlayStation gift list if you need more ideas.
At $179.99, seeing the Elite Series Controller on your gamer’s wish list might be a, ‘You want a What, and it costs how much?!?!?!’ moment. The Elite controller is pretty expensive but it could very well be the last controller your gamer ever asks for. Have you ever bought a controller that ends up never being used because it didn’t feel just right? You can rest assured that with the adjustable grips and interchangeable thumbsticks and D-pads your gamer will never complain about their controller ever again, making this Rolls Royce of controllers worth every penny.
When it comes to game subscriptions, Microsoft has put together the perfect gift for any Xbox gamer with the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. For $14.99 per month, the gamer on your list will get unlimited access to a library of 100+ games, including access to Xbox Game Studio titles on the day of release. Games are available for both console and PC, and with the new Cloud Gaming Beta, gamers can hit the road and play on their Android phone or tablet. New titles are added all the time and Microsoft continues to sweeten the pot with things like the recent addition of EA Play access being added to the Pass. If you still aren’t sold on how good a deal the Game Pass Ultimate is, new subscribers can get their first three months of Game Pass Ultimate for just $1! You can cancel at any time, but trust me, the Game Pass is the gift your gamer will love all year long.
Although Halo Infinite has been delayed, you can still put add Master Chief joy to your little (or big) Spartan’s holiday with this Master Chief Funko Pop. If Master Chief isn’t the perfect Xbox branded gift, there’s plenty of other gifts to choose from on the Xbox Gear Shop.
I mentioned it last week for the PlayStation gift list but it can never be stated enough – gift cards are a great gift for a gamer. I know, gift cards used to be the easy way out when you didn’t know what to get the recipient of your goodwill but I promise a $50 or $100 (or any amount) gift card is the perfect gift for a gamer. Trying to guess what game they want, checking to make sure they don’t already have it or can play it on Game Pass, and then figuring out whether to go with a physical or digital copy is way too much work. Just grab a gift card and be done with it already.
There isn’t a huge list of supported games yet but, if your Xbox gamer has one or more of the listed titles, the Razer Turret keyboard and mouse is a great gift idea. The Turret brings the precision and control that PC gamers enjoy to both the Xbox One and Xbox Series X. Chunkier than a regular keyboard, the Turret can be used at a desk but will also fill right at home sitting on your lap. It even has a built-in retractable mousepad for just such an occasion. Coming in at $249 ($200 on Amazon right now) the Turret may not fit your gift budget but there are cheaper options available.
Ok, so maybe a full keyboard and mouse combo that only works with a handful of games is a little too much? Well, any gamer would be thankful for a chatpad to connect to their controller. No more hunt and peck speed to enter a password or falling behind in chat because no one can wait 5 minutes for you to type out a sentence, the MoKo Xbox One Chatpad puts a keyboard at your fingertips…er, make that thumb tips. The green backlit keyboard ensures your gamer will be able to keep up with chat even when the lights off.
With the Game Pass Ultimate being such a great value I almost didn’t add an Xbox Live Gold membership to this list. Included with Game Pass Ultimate, Xbox Live Gold can be purchased separately for the budget-conscious. For $9.99 per month or $24.99 for a three-month subscription, Xbox Live Gold is required for anyone who wishes to engage in multiplayer games online. Your gamer will also get two free games per month to download and keep forever (unlike the rotating Game Pass catalog), though they can be hit or miss on whether they will like them or not. Unless your gamer only plays one or two games like Madden 21 or a battle royale title, it really is worth taking the plunge with Game Pass Ultimate, especially seeing as how Ultimate is only $1 for the first 3 months.
Unless your gamer is getting a new Xbox this holiday season, odds are the internal hard drive in their console is already full. If they find it difficult to choose which one of their favorite games to delete so they can install a new game, an external hard drive will be the perfect gift. For Xbox One owners, the good news is that any USB 3.0 external drive will work with the console. The only real questions are how much space you want and how fast you want the drive to be.
If space is your main concern, then you’ll be glad to know you won’t have to fork out a king’s ransom to find the perfect gift. If you want to match the 1TB internal drive size, something like a Toshiba Canvio portable drive is just $46.99 on Newegg. If you’re afraid that another 1TB drive will fill up just as quickly as the original – and it will – that same Canvio drive has a 2TB option for $56.99, or go big with the 4TB option for $99.99. With Christmas right around the corner components are going on and off sale all the time, so you can possibly find even cheaper options out there. Just remember it has to be USB 3.0 compatible, the cheaper USB 2.0 drives won’t cut the mustard.
If speed is the name of the game for your Xbox One external storage you’re going to have to pay the price for an SSD drive. Similar to the internal drive found in the new Series X, SSDs give blazing fast load times that can be much faster than the Xbox One’s internal drive. Odds are you’ll have to drop down to something like the 500GB Samsung T7 from Amazon to get under the $100 mark. If you still want at least 1TB of storage, I found the Crucial X8 portable on sale at Newegg for $129.99. Again, a little more searching could save you a little green.
If the console in question is a new Series X then things get a little more confusing, and probably more expensive. Like an Xbox One, an external USB drive can be connected to the Series X, and it can be used to store and run all backward compatible games (Xbox One, 360, and Xbox). You can also store new Series X games on an external drive but they will have to be swapped to the internal drive when you want to play them. This slows things down when you want to swap in a different game to play, but it’s still better than deleting and redownloading from scratch.
If hassle-free storage is what you’re looking for, then the only option Microsoft has given you for the Series X is one of its proprietary expansion cards. Made by Seagate, this plug and forget expansion card will give the same speedy performance as the original drive, allowing you to download any game and play it straight from the card. At almost half the price of the Series X console itself, this 1TB card will set you back $219.99. At least you can find them on store shelves.