The next generation of video game consoles is upon us and with it, a bit of a complicated naming structure for the latest Xbox consoles. Not only are there two brand new consoles being launched at the exact same time, but they are named very similar to past consoles that makes it very confusing. If you want to make the jump to next-gen, here is what you need to know about picking the right one.

Picking the Right Xbox For Next Generation Gaming

As of 2021, there are two next-gen console models. The Series S and the Series X. Before we even discuss the difference between the two of these systems, a very easy mistake to make needs to be addressed. These sound a lot like the consoles from last gen.

Be Careful Not To Mix the Series S/X with the One S/X

The Xbox 360 is the last unique named system Microsoft released, so let's start here. The Xbox 360 was the first HD Xbox console. After this came the Xbox One. This was a little strange progression of numbers but at least the names were quite different.

As time went on, Microsoft released an Xbox One S and an Xbox One X. The S was the cheaper, less powerful system and the X had more powerful hardware that was capable of rendering some games in 4k resolution. At this point, you should be able to see how this is going to get a bit confusing!

The latest consoles are the Xbox Series S and the Xbox Series X. Just like the last-gen consoles, the S is a cheaper model and the X is the premium system that can run games in native 4k at 120 frames per second.

Microsoft Xbox Series X and S
Microsoft Xbox Series X and S

Should You Buy The S or the X?

The S and the X will all play the exact same games. Games will not be a determining factor when making the decision. How well they perform will, however.

The Xbox Series S/X are both backwards compatible. You will be able to play all games released for the Xbox One on these next-gen systems, often with improved performance. If this is the first Xbox you have had since the 360, you will also be able to play a large selection of games from this system. Just be aware that your Gamertag has more than likely been recycled by now. This Xbox Gamertag generator will help you find something new if you find yourself in this situation.

If you are trying to decide, here are some important facts about both systems that will help influence your decision.

Do you own a 4k tv or plan on buying one?

If no, the S will do the job for you. The S supports resolutions of up to 1440p. It can upscale to 4k but if you never plan on getting a 4kTV, 1080p is all you need and the S will do this just fine.

Do you like to buy disc-based games, new or preowned?

If yes, the series X is required as the series S does not have a disc drive.

Do you download lots of games?

The series S has a very small hard drive and although it can be expanded, it is expensive. If you download a lot, it might be worth getting the series X for the larger 1TB of storage.

Do you prefer indie games over AAA?

If you love indie games or are just a casual gamer who wants to play a game like Fortnite, Minecraft or some other popular game with friends over Xbox Live the S will be a better console to pick. Most of these games will not push a console to its limit. There will be little graphical difference between these games.

Are you on a tight budget?

The Xbox Series S has a retail price of $300. This is a lot cheaper than the more hefty price tag of $500 for the Series X.