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PS5 and Xbox Series X: every game you can play at launch

Gaming technology improves with every new generation of hardware, but that’s not always apparent on launch day. Typically, new consoles are coupled with a lackluster slate of launch games, with developers needing time to fully take advantage of the new hardware. While there are some standout launch titles that will always be remembered — Tetris on the Game Boy, Halo on the original Xbox, and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild on the Switch — very few consoles ever arrive with more than one or perhaps two games worthy of being called system-sellers.

That’s looking to remain largely true with the launch of Sony’s PlayStation 5 and Microsoft’s Xbox Series X / S next week, despite the excellent-looking Tetris Effect: Connected port, the all-new Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales, and the Demon’s Souls remake, to name a few. But there’s one upside here that can’t be ignored: this is the first time in modern console history that you’ll be able to take your existing library, be it physical or digital, and bring it with you to a new platform.

That gives consumers unprecedented freedom in deciding where they want to play and what performance benefits are worthwhile enough to upgrade. And technologies like cross-platform play and now even cross-generation support will allow people that don’t upgrade to continue playing with their friends.

Yes, both consoles are arriving within days of another, seven years after the last generation of console hardware, and both have only a small handful of games that can be called truly next-gen experiences. Most are simply remasters or cross-generation titles with minor performance bumps. The minor good news is that there are quite a few big-name franchise releases to help fill the gap. Call of Duty is an obvious one, with Black Ops Cold War arriving the same week the new consoles launch. The same is true of the new Assassin’s Creed Valhalla.

But the much better news is that — besides 4K and the solid-state drives and other spec changes — Microsoft and Sony have pledged to support close to every title in the existing console platforms’ libraries. Every Xbox, Xbox 360, and Xbox One game currently playable on existing Xbox One hardware (minus Kinect games) will be playable on the Series X / S, while Sony has committed to supporting a “vast majority” of PS4 games totaling more than 4,000 titles.

This changes the calculus a bit with regard to buying a new console. No longer do you have to abandon what you were playing on your old device and start anew. And thanks to some genuinely consumer-friendly initiatives like Xbox Smart Delivery and similar upgrade programs, plenty of the games we own now or are planning to buy in the next couple of months will not only work on the new platforms, but in most cases, they’ll also come with free upgrades from the standard PS4 and Xbox One versions. Sony is also introducing the PlayStation Plus Collection, a library of PS4 games available for free with its online subscription.

That leaves us with one big issue: how do you know what new games are coming out for which platforms and when? There’s also the painstaking process of parsing whether a game company is giving out a free next-gen upgrade of a cross-gen title, charging a little extra, or releasing a next-gen-only game.

We’ve compiled an exhaustive list detailing the launch slates of both new console platforms on day one as well as what’s coming out this holiday season and beyond in 2021.

When the Xbox Series X launches on November 10th, it will have 30 fully optimized titles that will technically qualify as launch games. The PS5 will launch two days later on November 12th, and it will have 20 games. (This includes only fully optimized games and not what’s simply supported via backwards compatibility. The list also excludes games like Sony’s Ghost of Tsushima that may receive benefits from next-gen hardware but are still not fully optimized.)

Here’s a list of every day-one game available on both systems, notably excluding titles like Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War that launch shortly after launch day and will not be available by November 12th. Also, some games are noted as console exclusives despite having released on other platforms like the Nintendo Switch in the previous generation; we’re only focusing on whether a game is exclusive to either the PS5 or Xbox Series X / S, and timed console exclusives are treated the same as first-party permanent exclusives until a publisher or developer has a concrete cross-platform release date to share.

PS5 & Xbox Series X/S launch games

Game Xbox Series or PS5? Cross-gen upgrade? Other platforms? PC?
Game Xbox Series or PS5? Cross-gen upgrade? Other platforms? PC?
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla Both Free PS4, XB1, Stadia Yes
Astro’s Playroom PS5 only No, PS5 exclusive No, PS5 exclusive No
Bugsnax PS5 only Free PS4 Yes
Borderlands 3 Both Free PS4, XB1, Stadia Yes
Bright Memory: Infinite Xbox; other platforms in 2021 TBD PS5, PS4, XB1 Yes
Cuisine Royale Both Free to play; no upgrade needed PS4, XB1 Yes
Demon’s Souls (remake) PS5 only No, PS5 exclusive Originally on PS3 No
Devil May Cry 5: Special Edition Both No upgrade path No No
DIRT 5 Both Free PS4, XB1 Yes
Enlisted Xbox only Yes, price TBD XB1 Yes
Evergate Xbox only Yes, price TBD PS4, XB1, Switch Yes
The Falconeer Xbox only Free XB1 Yes
Fortnite Both Free to play; no upgrade needed PS4, XB1, Switch, iOS Yes
Forza Horizon 4 Xbox only Free XB1 Yes
Gears 5 Xbox only Free XB1 Yes
Gears Tactics Xbox only Free XB1 Yes
Godfall PS5 only No, PS5 exclusive No, PS5 exclusive Yes
Grounded Xbox only Free XB1 Yes
King Oddball Optimized for Xbox Series TBD PS4, XB1, Android Yes
Maneater Both Free PS4, XB1, Switch Yes
Manifold Garden Xbox only Free PS4, XB1, Switch, iOS Yes
Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales PS5 only Free PS4 No
Marvel’s Spider-Man Remastered PS5 only No, PS5 exclusive No, PS5 exclusive No
NBA 2K21 Both Only with $99.99 Mamba Edition PS4, XB1, Switch, Stadia Yes
No Man’s Sky Both Free PS4, XB1 Yes
Observer: System Redux Both No upgrade path PS4, XB1, Switch Yes
Ori and the Will of the Wisps Xbox only Free XB1, Switch Yes
Overcooked: All You Can Eat PS5; Xbox coming later No announced upgrade path XB1 (coming later) No
Planet Coaster Both Free PS4, XB1 Yes
Sackboy: A Big Adventure PS5 only Free PS4 No
Sea of Thieves Xbox only Free XB1 Yes
Tetris Effect: Connected Xbox; PS5 coming 2021 Free Originally on PS4, Oculus Yes
The Pathless PS5 only Free PS4, Apple Arcade Yes
The Touryst Xbox only Free XB1, Switch Yes
War Thunder Xbox only Free PS4, XB1 Yes
Warhammer: Chaosbane Slayer Edition Both No announced upgrade path No, next-gen exclusive Yes
Watch Dogs: Legion Both; PS5 discs launch Nov. 24 Free PS4, XB1, Stadia Yes
WRC 9 FIA World Rally Championship Both Free PS4, XB1, Switch Yes
Yakuza: Like a Dragon Xbox; PS5 coming March 2 Free PS4, XB1 Yes
Yes, Your Grace Xbox only Free XB1, Switch Yes

The confirmed launch day lists only scratch the surface of the upcoming game libraries for the PS5 and Xbox Series X. In the weeks following release, dozens more games are on the way. And 2021 is packed full of new releases and full optimizations of cross-gen games that should further pad out what’s available to play on your new system of choice. We’ve compiled the list below to help you understand every game coming out during this year’s holiday season and what’s been confirmed so far for 2021.

This excludes games without release dates that may have been previously announced — like Elder Scrolls VI and the Fable reboot, for example — and games previously listed in the above chart. We’ve also chosen only to list release dates for games for which the publisher has chosen a concrete date with both day and month.

PS5 & Xbox Series X/S Holiday and 2021 Release Schedule

Game Release Date Xbox Series or PS5? Cross-gen? PC?
Game Release Date Xbox Series or PS5? Cross-gen? PC?
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War 11/13/2020 Both Yes, $10 upgrade Yes
Halo: The Master Chief Collection 11/17/2020 Xbox only Yes, free upgrade Yes
Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate Edition 11/17/2020 Both Yes, free upgrade Yes
Poker Club 11/19/2020 Both Yes Yes
Just Dance 2021 11/24/2020 Both Yes Yes
Haven 12/3/2020 PS5 only Yes Yes
Immortals Fenyx Rising 12/03/2020 Both Yes Yes
FIFA 21 12/4/2020 Both Yes, free upgrade Yes
Madden NFL 21 12/4/2020 Both Yes Yes
Destiny 2: Beyond Light 12/8/2020 Both Yes, free upgrade Yes
Puyo Puyo Tetris 2 12/8/2020 Both Yes Yes
Temtem 12/8/2020 PS5 first; Xbox and PC in 2021 Yes Yes
Cyberpunk 2077 12/10/2020 Both Yes, free upgrade Yes
Worms Rumble December 2020 PS5 only Yes Yes
12 Minutes 2020 Xbox only Yes Yes
Bridge Constructor: The Walking Dead 2020 Both Yes Yes
Call of the Sea 2020 Xbox only Yes Yes
Control: Ultimate Edition 2020 Both Yes, upgrade only with Ultimate Edition Yes
CrossfireX 2020 Xbox only Yes, free upgrade Yes
Dead by Daylight 2020 Both Yes, free upgrade Yes
For Honor 2020 Both Yes, free upgrade Yes
Mørkredd 2020 Xbox only Yes Yes
Sable 2020 Xbox only Yes Yes
Samurai Spirits (aka Samurai Shodown) 2020 Xbox only Yes Yes
Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege 2020 Both Yes, free upgrade Yes
Warframe 2020 Both Yes, free-to-play Yes
Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart PS5 “launch window” PS5 only No, PS5 exclusive No
Hitman 3 01/20/2021 Both Free upgrade from digital Yes
Werewolf: The Apocalypse – Earthblood 02/04/2021 Both Yes Yes
Little Nightmares 2 02/11/2021 Both Yes Yes
Outriders 02/21/2021 Both Yes Yes
Riders Republic 02/25/2021 Both Yes Yes
Destruction AllStars February 2021 PS5 only No, PS5 exclusive No
Balan Wonderworld 03/26/2021 Both Yes Yes
The Medium 12/10/2021 Xbox only Yes Yes
Braid: Anniversary Edition 2021 Both Yes Yes
CYGNI: All Guns Blazing 2021 Both Yes Yes
Chivalry 2 2021 Both Yes Yes
Chorus 2021 Both Yes Yes
Cris Tales 2021 Both Yes Yes
Deathloop 2021 PS5 only No, PS5 exclusive Yes
Doom Eternal 2021 Both Yes, free upgrade Yes
Echo Generation 2021 Xbox only Yes Yes
Exomecha 2021 Xbox only Yes Yes
Far Cry 6 2021 Both Yes Yes
Ghostwire: Tokyo 2021 PS5 only TBD Yes
God of War: Ragnarok 2021 PS5 only TBD TBD
Goodbye Volcano High 2021 PS5 only Yes Yes
Gotham Knights 2021 Both Yes Yes
Grand Theft Auto V 2021 Both Yes Yes
Guilty Gear Strive 2021 PS5 only Yes Yes
Halo Infinite 2021 Xbox only Yes Yes
Heavenly Bodies 2021 PS5 only Yes Yes
Hello Neighbor 2 2021 Xbox only Yes Yes
Hogwarts Legacy 2021 Both Yes Yes
Horizon Forbidden West 2021 PS5 only Yes TBD
Hood: Outlaws and Legends 2021 Both Yes Yes
Kena: Bridge of Spirits 2021 PS5 only Yes Yes
Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga 2021 Both Yes Yes
Marvel’s Avengers 2021 Both Yes, free upgrade Yes
Psychonauts 2 2021 Xbox only Yes Yes
Resident Evil Village 2021 Both Yes Yes
Senua’s Saga: Hellblade II 2021 Xbox only TBD Yes
Sherlock Holmes: Chapter One 2021 Both Yes Yes
Solar Ash 2021 PS5 only Yes Yes
Stray 2021 PS5 only Yes Yes
Subnautica / Subnautica: Below Zero 2021 Both Yes, free upgrade Yes
The Ascent 2021 Xbox only Yes, free upgrade Yes
The Elder Scrolls Online 2021 Both Yes Yes
The Gunk 2021 Both Yes Yes
The Lord of the Rings: Gollum 2021 Xbox only Yes Yes
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt 2021 Both Yes, free upgrade Yes
Tribes of Midgard 2021 PS5 only Yes Yes
Unlimited Fishing Simulator 2 2021 Both Yes Yes
Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2 2021 Both Yes Yes
Vampire: The Masquerade – Swansong 2021 Both Yes Yes
War Mongrels 2021 Both Yes Yes
Warhammer 40,000: Darktide 2021 Xbox only TBD Yes
Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League 2022 Both TBD Yes

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