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Podcast Unlocked

Podcast Unlocked

Love video games? IGN's Podcast Unlocked is your source for everything Xbox One. If you live and breathe Halo, Gears of War, Forza, and more, Podcast Unlocked has you covered. Tune in every week for the latest video game news for Xbox One and Xbox Live junkies around the globe.

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Surprising No One, Forza Horizon 5 Is Awesome

It's the busy fall games season and we've got a LOT to talk about, from Forza Horizon 5 preview impressions (spoiler: it's absurdly good) to Back 4 Blood first impressions, the Grand Theft Auto Trilogy remasters being real, Ubisoft's latest uninspiring announcement in Ghost Recon Frontline, and more. Plus a special show announcement!

2021-10-13
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Xbox in Japan: Why We?re Optimistic

Xbox boss Phil Spencer reaffirms his commitment to supporting the Japanese game market and Japanese-developed games. We discuss what needs to happen and what we'd like to see. Plus: our impressions of Big Team Battle in Halo Infinite's second weekend of multiplayer test flight #2, and more!

2021-10-05
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Halo Infinite's Multiplayer Is Glorious (So Far)

Two big topics dominate this week's episode. First and foremost is our recap and analysis of the first weekend of the second Halo Infinite multiplayer test flight. We were all incredibly impressed by what 343 has put together so far. And second, we discuss the unexpected news that Square Enix-owned Crystal Dynamics, makers of Tomb Raider, will be partnering with Microsoft's The Initative studio on development of Perfect Dark. Join us!

2021-09-29
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This Fall Is FPS Heaven

Battlefield 2042's short delay has set up a heck of a Fall/holiday season for first-person shooter fans. We discuss each of the five major FPS games out between now and the end of the year: Far Cry 6, Back 4 Blood, Call of Duty: Vanguard, the aforementioned Battlefield 2042, and Halo Infinite. And please welcome back guest panelist NeoGameSpark!

2021-09-21
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Star Wars: KOTOR Is Back...but Not on Xbox

Beloved original Xbox classic Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic (aka KOTOR) is back as...a timed PlayStation 5 exclusive? We discuss the strange circumstances of this long-awaited revival, from the exclusivity deal to the developer behind it and more. Plus: we get psyched for Halo Infinite's next multiplayer test flight, Grand Theft Auto 5's next-gen edition gets delayed, and more!

2021-09-15
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Alan Wake Is Back!

Alan Wake is back and we are incredibly excited. Will this lead to the long-awaited sequel? We discuss... Plus: it's time to give Psychonauts 2 its flowers after an incredible journey that began in the early days of the original Xbox, so we do just that on this episode. Also: Miranda's "meh" reaction to Call of Duty: Vanguard's multiplayer beta, and more!

2021-09-08
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Analyzing Halo Infinite?s Release Date and Hardware Surprises

Halo Infinite finally has a release date, and it's not what any of us would've guessed. We analyze what the December date may or may not mean, celebrate both the unsurprising special-edition Halo controller and the definitely-surprising special-edition Halo Infinite Xbox One, discuss the negative reaction to the Saints Row reboot, give our hands-on impressions of Far Cry 6, and more!

2021-09-01
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Reacting to Xbox's Gamescom Showcase

We recorded this episode live immediately following the Xbox Showcase at Gamescom. We discuss why we thought this was a poor overall showing for Xbox due to pacing and notable game absences like Halo Infinite, Bright Memory Infinite, Scorn, and CrossfireX. But we also go over the really cool stuff, like the Forza Horizon 5 custom controller, xCloud coming to console, new indies like Midnight Fight Express, and more!

2021-08-25
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GTA Remaster Rumor: Why We?re Excited

A credible rumor suggests that Rockstar is preparing to release an Unreal Engine remaster of the Grand Theft Auto 3/Vice City/San Andreas trilogy. We discuss the technical side of that, the financial side of it, which one we're most excited to dive back into, and more. Plus: a spoiler-free discussion of the latest Xbox exclusive, Twelve Minutes, now that the review embargo has lifted, our thoughts on Call of Duty apparently going back to WWII once again for Call of Duty: Vanguard, and more!

2021-08-18
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Buckle Up for Xbox?s Big Gamescom Show

Xbox announces its big Gamescom event. We make our predictions for what we think we're going to see, along with what we think we might not see at this particular event. Plus: our highlights from the second Xbox Twitch indie showcase, Dead Space's maybe-earlier-than-expected release date, what we want from Trey Parker and Matt Stone's new South Park game, what Mass Effect: Legendary Edition's strong sales mean for Mass Effect 4, and more!

2021-08-11
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Xbox's Great Weekend with Halo Infinite's Impressive Tech Preview and the Ascent

It was a big weekend for Xbox. In this episode we break down the different modes and experiences we tried in the Halo Infinite tech preview, share thoughts on The Ascent, and explore the question that will never die: does Halo need a Battle Royale?

2021-08-04
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Dead Space Remake: Is EA Back in Gamers' Good Graces?

EA's just-announced Dead Space remake leads us to discuss whether or not EA has turned the corner and started to re-earn gamers' trust. Plus: our impressions of Microsoft Flight Simulator on Xbox Series X and S, a bit on Death's Door, The Coalition's Unreal Engine 5 tech demo, Halo Infinite's imminent multiplayer tech test, and more! (P.S. This was recorded prior to Microsoft's earnings call.)

2021-07-28
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We Need to Talk About Tom Clancy?s XDefiant

Reactions to Ubisoft's new Tom Clancy-universe-blending first-person shooter XDefiant have been polarizing, to say the least. We spend the bulk of the show discussing the controversial game announcement, from the challenges it faces to why it's upsetting some Clancy game fans to where the Clancy games go from here. Plus: Miranda shares her hands-on impressions of Psychonauts 2, and more!

2021-07-21
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FPS Games to Level Up...in the Cloud?

With word from Battlefield 2042 developer DICE that cloud computing will soon level up the capabilities of first-person shooters, we discuss what we'd like to see and what we think we'll see. Plus: what we hope the studio formerly known as DICE LA will be up to next, Dark Souls 3's new FPS Boost on Xbox Series, and more!

2021-07-16
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Xbox Goes '90s

In this episode of Unlocked, the crew joined by Taylor Lyles discusses Microsoft's team up with All-4-One for a neat "I Swear" Xbox All Access remix, revisits the Phil Spencer interview from Unlocked 500, theorizes what could be happening with a rumor about Kojima and Xbox Cloud Gaming, and plenty more.

2021-07-07
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Phil Spencer Interview: 20 Years of Xbox

We celebrate the 500th episode of IGN's long-running Xbox podcast in the best way we can think of: by hanging out with the Head of Xbox himself, Phil Spencer, who has been at Xbox since Day One. We talk to Phil about the past, present, and future of Xbox as the brand turns 20 this year. Join us!

2021-06-30
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E3 2021 Was Xbox?s Best E3 Ever

This episode was recorded live immediately after the Xbox Extended Showcase, hosted by Gamertag Radio's Parris Lilly. Parris joins us for this episode to discuss big games (like Halo Infinite, Redfall, Starfield, Forza Horizon 5, and many more), stunning indie gams (like Replaced, 12 Minutes, Somerville, and more), whether or not this was Xbox's best E3 presentation ever, and more!

2021-06-18
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12 Xbox E3 Predictions

As E3 2021 looms, it's time for our annual E3 predictions episode! We make a dozen total predictions about what we think we're going to see at Xbox's E3 press conference. And then make sure to join us live for our Xbox E3 press conference pre-show, starting at 9:30am PT/12:30pm ET on Sunday, June 13!

2021-06-08
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The Holiday 2021 Xbox Calendar Starts to Fill in

As E3 2021 looms, the big games are starting to show their hand. We discuss the recent gameplay reveals for Far Cry 6 and Dying Light 2 ? both of which also got firm Fall release dates. Plus: Bungie's next project, Microsoft Flight Simulator does some housekeeping to maybe get ready for its Xbox Series X release, and more!

2021-06-02
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Outer Worlds' Xbox Future Just Got a Bit Clearer

Microsoft takes full control over Obsidian's Outer Worlds franchise from Private Division, so we discuss what that means for the future. Plus: Starfield's release window becomes clearer, No Man's Sky gets a thematically appropriate Mass Effect Easter egg, and more!

2021-05-26
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Why We Love Mass Effect: Legendary Edition

Mass Effect: Legendary Edition is out and we spend most of the show discussing it, from whether or not it was worth the wait (hint: it was), to what we think of Mass Effect 1's quality-of-life upgrades, to how it holds up in 2021, and more! Plus: impressions of the upcoming Xbox exclusive The Ascent, new Xbox Game Pass games for the month of May, and more!

2021-05-19
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Gears and Fable's Next-Gen Tech Revealed

As Fable and Gears of War's next-gen tech is revealed, we discuss what their new engines mean for the future of those franchises - and the franchises around them. Plus: our impressions of Resident Evil Village, 12 Minutes, what we want from the new list of publishers who've confirmed they'll attend E3 2021, and more!

2021-05-12
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Halo Infinite's Tempting PC Features

Halo Infinite details its impressive PC features and options, leading some of the Unlocked crew to ponder whether to stick with it on Xbox or move to PC. Plus: the Xbox Compatibility Team drops another batch of FPS Boost games, a trademark gets filed for Sunset Overdrive by...Sony?!, and more!

2021-05-05
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Xbox Series X Goes Big on 120fps

The Xbox compatibility team delivers again by boosting a ton of fairly recent EA games -- including Battlefield V and Titanfall 2 -- up to 120fps on Xbox Series X. Plus: Respawn incubates a new game, It Takes Two gets off to a well-deserved great start, we debate the effect of Sony delisting Cyberpunk 2077 from the PlayStation Store on the game's Xbox sales, and more! (Note: this episode was recorded prior to Microsoft's Q3 earnings call.)

2021-04-27
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xCloud's Apple Launch Is Key to Xbox's Master Plan

Another big week for Xbox! We talk about why we think xCloud's long-awaited Apple/iOS rollout is key for the future of the Xbox platform, Discord turning down Microsoft's $10 billion offer, Psychonauts 2 and Xbox's underrated 2021 lineup, Resident Evil Village's next-gen specs, and more! Spawn on Me host Kahlief Adams joins us to discuss the DICE Awards he's hosting this week as well. Tune in!

2021-04-21
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What if the Kojima-Xbox Rumor Is True?

The gaming community is buzzing about a hot rumor that Microsoft is in talks with legendary game developer Hideo Kojima to develop his next game for Xbox. We humor the rumor and discuss what it would mean for Xbox, as well as what kind of game we'd like to see Kojima make for Microsoft. Plus: how you can have a chance to play Forza Motosport this year, the tragedy of Ninja Gaiden Black's lost source code, and more!

2021-04-14
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Xbox Game Pass Is Getting Sony Exclusives Now

Xbox Game Pass is on such a roll that it's landing first-party Sony games now! MLB The Show 21 is a huge get for Game Pass. We discuss MLB's smart, forward-thinking move as well as the incredibly momentum of the Game Pass service in general. Plus: E3 is back...sort of...we discuss Xbox's new $500 wireless headphones, and more!

2021-04-07
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Should Call of Duty Go Back to WWII AGAIN?

With Sledgehammer reportedly back in the Call of Duty business and prepping a World War II-set video game for this year's entry in the series, we discuss whether we even want another WWII-set CoD. Plus: It Takes Two is excellent, the [email protected] stream was a fantastic show of a ton of great new games (many of which are going straight to Xbox Game Pass), CD Projekt Red changes its plans as they continue to try and rebound from Cyberpunk 2077's disastrous launch, and more!

2021-03-30
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What Gotham Knights' Delay Might Mean for Rocksteady's Suicide Squad

One of 2021's big releases, Gotham Knights, just got pushed to 2022. We discuss what it means not just for that game, but for Rocksteady's Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League as well. Plus: Xbox Live gets rebranded, Microsoft might be buying Discord, we've got an [email protected] showcase to look forward to this week, and more!

2021-03-23
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Bethesda Makes it Rain on Xbox Game Pass

Bethesda held a fantastic roundtable discussion with Phil Spencer and some of the Xbox leadership team, and we discussed our impressions of the first big post-acquisition event, from Phil's comments on exclusivity to his admiration of the id Tech engine to the avalanche of Bethesda games that are now on Xbox Game Pass. Plus: our impressions of the excellent new Xbox Wireless Headset, Halo Infinite's fun new gameplay trick, and much more!

2021-03-17
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Microsoft OFFICIALLY Acquires Bethesda. Now What?

Big Xbox news this week as European and American regulators sign off on Microsoft's acquisition of Zenimax and Bethesda, making the acquisition official. What will Microsoft do next? Which games will be exclusive? We discuss that and much more on this topic. Plus: what other new Xbox surprises await in 2021, WTF do Pringles' Halo Infinite "Moa Burger"-flavored potato chips taste like, and more!

2021-03-10
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Anthem Died So That Mass Effect and Dragon Age Might Live

Lots of BioWare news to discuss this week, from Anthem's cancellation to Henry Cavill (aka Superman aka Geralt)'s Mass Effect project to Dragon Age 4 no longer being a live-service game. Plus: Xbox's Aaron Greenberg downplays recent Elden Ring rumors, Battlefield for next-gen gets more help within EA, and more!

2021-03-03
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FPS Boost Continues Xbox's Back-Compat Mastery

The Xbox backwards compatibility team flexes their muscles again with FPS Boost, an unexpected and awesome new improvement to back-catalog games. We celebrate the new feature. Plus: Diablo 2's long-rumored remaster has us super excited, we wonder what's next for Bungie as the studio expands, March's Games With Gold revealed, and more!

2021-02-24
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Ex-Bungie Devs? New (Old) FPS Is Controversial

We discuss the return of Six Days in Fallujah, a resurrection of a canceled 2009 game based on real-world events, including its A-list team of ex-Bungie developers and what they've said about the controversial project so far. Plus: we're excited about the just-announced Xbox Wireless Headset, Microsoft creates a new Fallout-themed company to oversee the Bethesda acquisition, and more!

2021-02-17
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343's New Halo Project? We Want a Horror Game

With a job posting suggesting that 343 Industries is spinning up a new Halo game besides Halo Infinite, we speculate on what it might be ? and decide we want a Halo horror game. Plus: our impressions of Xbox exclusive The Medium, Grand Theft Auto 5's unstoppable run and what we want from GTA 6, and more!

2021-02-10
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What We Think After Seeing Mass Effect: Legendary Edition

To quote a line from Halo 2 in describing Mass Effect: Legendary Edition: "There are those who said this day would never come. What are they to say now?" Yes, we're talking about the long-awaited remaster of BioWare's beloved sci-fi RPG trilogy. We've seen it, and we want to tell you all about it. Plus: Xbox's baseball-game curse is finally lifted ? a year earlier than expected too! ? and EA surprised everyone with the return of a college football game. Please welcome special guests Kat Bailey and Cam Hawkins this week!

2021-02-03
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Making Sense of Microsoft's Averted Xbox Live Gold Disaster

What a week! There's so much to discuss on this episode, from Microsoft shockingly doubling the price of Xbox Live Gold only to just-as-shockingly walk it back later that same day, to the insane new Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic rumor, to Vicarious Visions merging into Blizzard to work on...Diablo 2 (!), and more!

2021-01-27
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Where Will Ubisoft Take Star Wars?

The new Lucasfilm Games publishing umbrella once again dominates our conversation this week, as the first new non-EA Star Wars game in a decade gets announced. We discuss Ubisoft and Massive's upcoming open-world Star Wars adventure, including what it might be, what we hope it is and isn't, what it means for The Division, and more. Plus: Ninja Gaiden's creator would be "honored" to work with Microsoft again, and more!

2021-01-20
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Will Bethesda's Indiana Jones Game Be an Xbox Exclusive?

Will the just-announced Indiana Jones game from Bethesda, Machinegames, and Todd Howard be an Xbox exclusive? We discuss this fascinating announcement. Plus: is Star Wars gearing up for life after EA? And we sort through the revelation that Microsoft tried to buy Nintendo (!) in the early Xbox days, a rumored Mass Effect: Legendary Edition release date, and more. It's a busy week of Xbox on Podcast Unlocked!

2021-01-13
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Discussing 10 Xbox Exclusives for 2021

Happy New Year! On our first Unlocked episode of 2021, we look ahead to the (long) list of Xbox exclusives coming this year. Plus: Gears 5: Hivebusters rocks, Fortnite's developer moves into...a mall(?), Games With Gold for January includes an OG Xbox cult classic, and more!

2021-01-06
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1-on-1 With Double Fine's Tim Schafer: Psychonauts 2, Being Acquired by Microsoft, and More!

Our final episode of 2020 is a special one! Ryan welcomes Tim Schafer, the head of Double Fine (aka one of the newest Xbox Game Studios), for a 40-minute conversation about life since being acquired by Microsoft. But don't fret ? that very much includes an update on Psychonauts 2 as well! P.S. We're off next week but we'll be back with new episodes of Unlocked starting January 5. Happy holidays and Happy New Year!

2020-12-22
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Cyberpunk 2077's Current-Gen Nightmare + Perfect Dark Reboot Is Finally Real

Our penultimate show in 2020 is a big one! We spend the first half of the show discussing the nightmare scenario that is Cyberpunk 2077 on the current-gen consoles. After that, we dig into the big Xbox news from The Game Awards, including the long-anticipated reveal of the Perfect Dark reboot from The Initiative, the awards that Xbox games won, and Mass Effect's surprising continuity. Plus: Halo Infinite's release window and more!

2020-12-16
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Analyzing BioWare's Big Shakeup

Digital Foundry's John Linneman and Gamertag Radio's Danny Peña join us to talk about all sorts of Xbox stuff this week! Topics include: the future of BioWare after their big studio leadership shakeup, next-gen sports games on Xbox Series X, what's going on with Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War on Series X, our Game Awards announcement predictions for Xbox, and much more!

2020-12-09
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What Will Cyberpunk 2077 Multiplayer Be Like?

What will Cyberpunk 2077 multiplayer be like? Special guests Ray Apollo from Twitch and Cam Hawkins from DualShockers join Ryan and Brandin for an extra-fun episode that also discusses Microsoft's underrated next-gen efforts, more awesome stuff coming to Xbox Game Pass, MechWarrior's long-awaited Xbox return, and much more!

2020-12-02
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Hitman Devs' James Bond Could Be the Best 007 Game Ever

The developer of Hitman has a new James Bond game in the works. We discuss why it could be the best Bond ever. Plus: Phil Spencer says an Xbox smart TV app is closer than we think, some of us would totally play the leaked retail Cyberpunk 2077 disc that hasn't been patched yet if we could, a bunch of big games get delayed, and more!

2020-11-25
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Analyzing the Xbox Series X|S's Fast Start

Next-gen is now officially current-gen! The Xbox Series X and S are out, and we talk about our first week of living with them. Plus: we analyze Microsoft's big first-week numbers, address shortages expected well into 2021, talk about another Xbox executive's recent comments on Bethesda game exclusivity, and more!

2020-11-18
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Mass Effect's Future Just Got Brighter

It's the week you've been waiting for: the next-generation of Xbox has officially arrived with the Series X and Series S. We discuss the launches of Microsoft's two new consoles. Plus: EA and BioWare finally confirm Mass Effect: Legendary Edition, the 4K remaster of the classic sci-fi trilogy. We discuss that as well as the future of the fan-favorite RPG franchise.

2020-11-11
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Xbox Series X Final Impressions and Audience AMA

Welcome to a special two-hour episode of Unlocked that was recorded live with all of you, along with special guest panelist Parris Lilly from Gamertag Radio! We played the Series X for two hours now that the review embargo has lifted, and answered a lot of your questions along the way. We also talked through our final impressions of Microsoft's new consoles. If you normally listen to the podcast feed of Unlocked, we'd encourage you to watch the video version on this one!

2020-11-06
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The Winners and Losers of Cyberpunk 2077's New Delay

Cyberpunk 2077's last-minute delay affects everyone, from developers to gamers to media outlets alike. We sort through the fallout of this major news. Plus: a surprise Gears 5 update, Phil Spencer teases a possible 1 vs. 100-like replacement on Xbox Series, and more!

2020-10-28
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Xbox Series X Launch Lineup Reactions

Another busy week of Xbox news to discuss, from the Xbox Series X's launch lineup (to the best Xbox launch lineup in history) to what Phil Spencer said about Bethesda game exclusivity in a recent interview to what The Initiative is working on, and more! Cam Hawkins from DualShockers stops by as our special guest this week.

2020-10-21
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