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Hey Poor Player Holiday Buyers Guide 2021 – Xbox One

The Last Generation Continues

Holiday Buyers Guide

Welcome to the Hey Poor Player Holiday Gift Guide. From Monday, November 8th through Friday, November 19th, we’ll be bringing you a guide to all the games, accessories, systems, and other hot items players will be looking for this holiday season. With Black Friday and other Holiday sales set to start in the coming weeks, we thought now was the perfect time to help draw attention to just what you players should be looking for in the coming weeks. So whether you’re looking for a gift for someone else, or maybe something for yourself, we’ve got you covered. Please keep in mind that as we move into our individual game lists, we’ve limited each game to one list to help spread the word about more great titles released in 2021. So if a game you love shows up on a genre list but not on one for a system, it doesn’t mean we didn’t love it. It just means that let us showcase more great titles.

Today we’ll be looking at some great games for Xbox One players who haven’t made an upgrade to the next generation yet. Many of these games are on other systems, or even on next generation ones, but they’re all titles that Xbox One players should still be able to have a great experience with and not feel like they’re missing out on a far superior version of the game.

 

Death’s Door

 

Holiday Buyers Guide

Also On: Xbox Series X|S, PC (Our Review) (Coming Soon to Switch, PS5, PS4)

Price: $19.99

With an art style that immediately calls to mind the works of Studio Ghibli, and gameplay that feels like a mixture of Hades and Zelda, Death’s Door had my attention from the start. Our own Josh Speer was a big fan of this one from Devolver Digital:

“I relished the time I spent with Death’s Door. Not only was I captivated by the visual style, but the gameplay was dynamic, clever, and well-balanced. I spent about 9 hours to roll the credits, and still have plenty of secrets to find. I may have had my doubts about Acid Nerve before, but those are pretty much gone now. They’ve shown they have the chops to not only make a beautiful game, but one that’s fun, challenging, and balanced precisely.”

 

ENDER LILIES: Quietus of the Knights

 

Holiday Buyers Guide

Also On: PS4, Xbox Series X|S, Switch, PC (Our Review)

Price: $24.99

This was a big year for Metroidvanias. Even the namesakes of the genre, Metroid and Castlevania, got in on the fun. Yet ENDER LILIES still stood out with a beautiful art style and difficult but balanced gameplay. Here’s what our own Josh Speer had to say about it:

“Honestly, there’s very little I can complain about. ENDER LILIES: Quietus of the Knights is one of the best Metroidvanias I’ve played. Sure, it’s challenging, but also well balanced and fair. When you add stunning artwork, captivating music and a touching story, you have a winner.”

 

The Forgotten City

 

Holiday Buyers Guide

Also On: PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X|S, Switch, PC (Our Review)

Price: $24.99

Time loops were big in 2021, but no game nailed them as well as The Forgotten City. Trapping you in the distant past, and in a city you couldn’t escape even there, your choice was to solve an epic mystery stuck in time or die trying. Here’s what our own Heather Johnson Yu had to say about it:

“It’s easy to point out what The Forgotten City does right — mechanics, progression, story, gameplay, dialog, quests, atmosphere, design, voice acting, etc. — but hard to say what it does best, because it’s all supremely well done. With a wildly imaginative concept executed perfectly and poignantly, The Forgotten City will please anyone with an interest in history, philosophy, mythology, or just a good, tight exploration story.”

 

Song of Iron

 

Holiday Buyers Guide

Also On: Xbox Series X|S, PC (Our Review)

Price: $19.99

No game in 2021 took me by surprise the way Song of Iron did. What initially looked like a simple yet pretty side scroller quickly turned into so much more, offering an experience which goes to truly unexpected places. Here’s what I had to say earlier this year:

“With an unbelievable look, tight gameplay, and bravura moments which shouldn’t work yet do, Song of Iron breaks away from the pack and stands alone. It is a stunning achievement and an absolute must-play. Hear the song and join the fight.”

 

The Wild At Heart

 

Holiday Buyers Guide

Also On: Xbox Series X|S, PC (Our Review) (Switch and PS4 Coming Soon)

Price: $24.99

A beautiful game that captures a specific time and place in a way few manage, The Wild at Heart is worth the time of any player with a bit of nostalgia for the 80s. Our own Heather Johnson Yu was definitely pulled in:

“With soothing music, calming visuals, addictive gameplay, and a unique tale that unfolds slowly, The Wild At Heart is incredibly easy to recommend. In fact, the only thing you will need to find real enjoyment with this gem is a controller and a good 20 hours to sink into it. There is so much charm and energy in this little puzzler, and I was so engaged in figuring out the whimsical world of the Deep Woods that I hardly noticed the time just whizzing by. If you’re the type that likes to play problem-solving games to relax, you absolutely need The Wild At Heart.”

 

Andrew Thornton
Andrew has been writing about video games for nearly twenty years, contributing to publications such as DarkStation, Games Are Fun, and the E-mpire Ltd. network. He enjoys most genres but is always pulled back to classic RPG's, with his favorite games ever including Suikoden II, Panzer Dragoon Saga, and Phantasy Star IV. Don't worry though, he thinks new games are cool too, with more recent favorites like Hades, Rocket League, and Splatoon 2 stealing hundreds of hours of his life. When he isn't playing games he's often watching classic movies, catching a basketball game, or reading the first twenty pages of a book before getting busy and forgetting about it.

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