Christmas is nearly upon us, and with an Xbox One set to find itself under a lot of trees this year, I figured a small post on how to get the best from the new console for your loved one would be a great help to those non-gaming parents out there. If I don't answer your question in this post then please get in touch on social media or the comment section below, and I will be happy to help you out.
What Is Xbox Live Gold And Will I Need it?
Xbox Live gold is a service from Microsoft that will allow you to play with friends and people from around the world online. The console can work just fine without this, but I would suggest this being a must if the loved one you're buying it for has friends who are using this service already, as chances are this is the reason they asked you for it in the first place.
You can buy this service in 1-month, 3-months, 6-months, or a 1-year subscription, with the best place to look for this being places such as CD Keys or other online retailers who sell these codes. Do be careful where buying from though, as there are many places on the Internet that are very shady indeed.. You can buy it from the console itself if you wish, but the prices there tend to be high side if buying for the year, with online prices normally coming around the £30.00 mark, and the price on the console being £39.99 for the year. If the person you are buying this for already has gold on their Xbox 360, this will carry on over to their new Xbox One console once they sign in with their Xbox account, and will also allow all other accounts on their Xbox One to use the service as long as the main account has Gold on it. This is great if this is a present for multiple members of the family, as none one wants to be paying multiple times for this if you have a bunch of kids. They can have their own account, with just one Xbox Live Gold sub needed for the whole console.
Not only does this service let the person play with friends and new people online, but you also get four free games every month thanks to Games Wih Gold, and also discounts on weekly sales for games and other forms of entertainment every once in a while with Deals With Gold.
Two games will be Xbox One games, with the other two being Xbox 360 games that are made available on the Xbox One thanks to them becoming Backwards Compatible, this is where old 360 games (disc or digital ones that you own) will be able to be used on your shiny new Xbox One. The list of games that are currently Backwards Compatible can be found here, with games being added to it all the time.
Where Should I Buy My Xbox Credit From?
If you planning on renting movies or buying digital games and DLC, then shopping around online before the big day will net you some sort of saving. The option is there to buy things with your credit card and Paypal on the console, but the Internet is full of deals for Xbox Live credit and Xbox Live gold all throughout the year. The guys at Postabargain and Frugal Gaming do a great job at finding the best prices/links for these, so check them out and I promise you that you will find yourself paying less for something that you have your eye on.
What Extras Should I Buy?
The console you bought will be pretty much good to go out the box, but certain extras can be added at an extra cost if you wish to. Things like a better headset are a must if the person you are buying for plans to go online a lot (as well as giving you peace and quiet and not game noise echoing around the house at all times). Wireless ones are the best way to go, as anything that sees wires and kids coming together has broken in a week written all over it.
Another thing to think about is subscription based TV and game services, these being additional apps on the console that require a monthly payment on top of your Xbox Live Gold, but offer many hours of entertainment. Apps like NOW TV, WWE Network, and Netflix are worth reading up on if you love Movies, and in the case of WWE Network a bit of wrestling.
There is one subscription service that stands head and shoulders above all of these and is something you would be daft not trying out at least, that being the one that offers games.
EA Access offers you loads of games via a thing called a vault, which already has games like Plants Vs Zombies Garden Warfare 1/2, UFC 2, and Mirror's Edge Catalyst in it, with Star Wars Battlefront being added to it next week (December 13th). As long as you have a subscription to this service these games are yours to keep and play, with a month costing £3.99 and a year costing £19.99 if buying on the console. Be sure to shop around online for this too as you can easily find a year for around £18.00, and a month anywhere under £3.00 if you do. This service also offers trials on new games releasing a week before release, as well as a 10% discount on any EA item on the digital store. Read up more on this service here.
That's about all I can think of off the top of my head, but If you have any other questions then be sure to ask in the comments below, or contact me on Twitter @HXboxReviews