Xbox Sales: TA Team Picks (February 17th)

Tom West - February 17th 2022

The week's Xbox Sales are offering up a huge selection of discounted games. As such, the TA news team has thoroughly dissected the available titles to offer you their top picks. It's an action-packed ride from here on out, with a selection of games that will take you to fantastical realms, post-apocalyptic worlds, and vicious battlefields. Gear up, and let's see what we've got for you...

Heidi — Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales

It’s a little bit insane that you can get Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales for 70% off and just over £5 — considering the amount of content you get with this game, and how good that content is, it just seems nuts. Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales is a fantastic RPG that mashes together card battling, puzzles, exploration, and more together with the sort of wickedly sharp story you expect from Witcher games. We play as Queen Meve, who is faced with a Nilfgaardian invasion. Meve is a fascinating character, and her role as queen isn’t just for show; you’ll be given a number of genuinely difficult choices to make — in typical Witcher fashion, they’ll have you worrying over them for some time and endlessly wondering if you should have chosen differently. The card battling is addictive and engaging, and Thronebreaker doesn’t give you a chance to get bored; changing up the type of battle, throwing a puzzle in your way, bringing Meve to a new location, limiting your deck or else confounding you in any number of ways.

There’s a rich cast of characters, and since you’re also tasked with building up your army and your base of operations, you often have the chance to chat with each of them still more as they sit in your camp. The level of detail is phenomenal, too, especially considering that CDPR could have created anything Witcher-related and we’d have been happy. As Meve travels through the world, you see dust kicked up by her passage, trees waving in the wind, pebbles she’s knocked rolling away. There’s even a bit of resource gathering and management to consider, as Meve collects recruits, wood, and gold. Basically, there’s something for everyone in Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales — and it’s at a ludicrous discount, too

Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales

Thronebreaker is a single player role-playing game set in the world of The Witcher that combines narrative-driven exploration with unique puzzles and card battle mechanics.

Kes — Battlefield 4

If Battlefield 2042 isn’t floating your boat — and it sounds like not many boats are seaworthy at the moment — then why not head back in time and give the fourth entry a spin? If you are railing against EA, this probably isn’t the pick for you, but Battlefield 4 did become one of the best modern military shooters available in the Xbox One and PS4 generation. Those big maps were perfectly constructed, with huge focal points for big shootouts and suburb-like outskirts for more brutal personal engagements. When an entire map would change thanks to 'levolution,' it would have actual tactical consequences. One moment you are clearing the elevators in a skyscraper in downtown Shanghai, grenading the rooftops, setting up a sniper hole for cover, and then taking on the objective atop this urban beast. The next moment, you hear the deeply unsettling creak of metal, and see your enemy fleeing the scene. With a shout from your squad, you realise you must do the same. Off you jump, seeing the skyscraper topple behind you and into the depths of the bay to form a new objective under siege from tanks. Unfortunately, your sniper didn’t make it off in time and is now buried under rubble, but that’s cool: you can laugh at his expense, the useless coward. Battlefield 4 is hard banter, all the time. With good shooting, a wide array of maps and game modes, a perfect player count, and still populated servers, this is bang for your buck.
Battlefield 4

Battlefield 4™ is the genre-defining action blockbuster made from moments that blur the line between game and glory - moments found only in Battlefield. With dynamic destructible environments, epic vehicular combat, and the chaos of all-out war, Battlefield 4 gives you the freedom to do more and be more for an unrivaled entertainment experience.

Luke — Monster Hunter World: Iceborne

Sure, I might only have a handful of Monster Hunter World achievements unlocked here on TA, but head over to TT and you'll see a completely different picture — I have over 2,000 hours in World and Iceborne combined on PlayStation, and it was my favourite game of last generation. While a 25% discount might not seem that great, it's as low as this combo pack of Capcom's incredible wyvern-slaying reinvention and its expansion has ever been, and if you're talking value for money, this is just an absurd amount of content for the price. The base game alone has hundreds of hours' worth of hunting, with Iceborne building on that amazing foundation with an entire new difficulty tier and a bunch of new monsters to track, slay, capture, and wear. Post-launch support was practically second to none, with weekly Event quests, seasonal special events, and spectacular endgame hunts that change up the usual formula — the Kulve Taroth siege in particular is an ingenious blend of cooperative and competitive multiplayer, making entire lobbies group up and race to bring down the giant gold beast first to earn the best rewards.

Now that regular content updates have finished as Capcom turns its attention to Monster Hunter Rise's ongoing support (as well as whatever comes next, as Capcom's best-selling game of all time is inevitably getting a follow-up sometime soon), all of that stuff is just there, in the game, all the time. The two Sieges alternate every two weeks, but the rest is all right there, leading to a mind-blowing amount of options for newcomers and a ton of ways to farm the monsters you need in order to craft their gear sets. The achievement list is an absolute pig, I'm not gonna lie — getting crowns for defeating particularly large or small bosses is pure chance, and the last thing I'm missing in the base game a thousand hours later — but the game is a remarkable evolution of one of my favourite franchises, and something I will take any opportunity I can get to recommend to new players. You might need a guide to take you through some of the more advanced systems since the game isn't exactly forthright in explaining all of its nuanced systems, but with close to 18 million players out there, finding an experienced hunter to lead the way shouldn't be too much of a hassle.

Monster Hunter World: Iceborne Master Edition Digital Deluxe

This is the Digital Deluxe Edition of "Monster Hunter World: Iceborne Master Edition," a set containing both the main game and the massive "Iceborne" expansion.

New quests, monsters, weapons, armor, story, and the unlocking of an all-new "master rank" await to take your hunting to the next level!

Sean — Spec Ops: The Line

I took some of Kes’ advice from a previous Sales Picks article and picked up Spec Ops: The Line when it was on sale, and boy, am I glad I listened. This third-person shooter is excellent in terms of narrative, and I was pleasantly surprised with how well it holds up from a gameplay perspective. You play as the no-nonsense Captain Walker, who, along with a couple of squadmates, has been sent to Dubai in search of 33rd Battalion and its commander Colonel John Konrad, who have gone missing after failing to evacuate the city from monumental dust storms. You soon find that the city is filled with terrorists, and you have to fight your way through towering and opulent skyscrapers, over the top of sand dunes, and down abandoned highways filled with empty vehicles to find out what’s gone so badly wrong. As Kes previously noted, the level design is nothing short of excellent, especially when paired with the fantastic backdrop of a Dubai suffocated by sand. Hats off to the art directors and level designers here — they’ve created a dystopic world that feels like it has a sense of place and history to it. I won’t go too much into the story, but I promise you, you’re in for a wild ride that will take you down a different path to some of the more jingoistic military shooters out there. The only thing I will say is that visually, it does look pretty rough by today’s standards, and the controls are a bit off, but it is a ten-year-old game, so you can’t expect too much. The achievement list isn’t too bad either, other than the MFWIC achievement, which asks you to complete the game on the hardest difficulty. I haven’t attempted it yet, but I can imagine it’s going to be tough.

Much like Kes, I would love to see this get a remake/remaster — even FPS Boost support would be good enough! It really is a gem of a game that definitely deserves some love, and if you haven’t played it, stop reading this article right now and hit that buy button.

Spec Ops: The Line

(Online Interactions Not Rated by the ESRB) It’s been 6 months since Dubai was wiped off the map by a cataclysmic sandstorm. Thousands of lives were lost, including those of American soldiers sent to evacuate the city. Today, the city lies buried under sand, the world’s most opulent ruin.

Tom — WWZ: Aftermath

I love zombie games, zombie movies… well, I just love zombies, come to think of it. I should probably talk to a medical professional about it sometime, but nevertheless, World War Z: Aftermath is a whole lot of fun, and while seeing a video game adaptation of a movie might fill you with a sense of doubt due to the long history of crap licensed games, this is one I’m happy to say isn’t a steaming turd. It’s not perfect either, but while there are a few bugs to be found and World War Z's achievement list advocates grinding more than your local skate park, the game’s general mission structure, enjoyable gunplay, and its ability to squeeze hundreds of zombies onto your screen at any given time, make it a lot of fun to play.

The recent Aftermath expansion adds two new mission locations, weapons, and a new class, as well as the original game, which makes it a great pick-up for 35% off. I was a little disappointed to find out that it wasn’t a fully-fledged game after its original announcement, but learning that the team is working on the upcoming Evil Dead: The Game, I’m a happy boy!

World War Z: Aftermath

World War Z: Aftermath is the ultimate co-op zombie shooter and the next evolution of the original hit World War Z that has now captivated over 15 million players. Fight off hordes of ravenous zombies in intense story episodes across new zombie-ravaged locations around the world.

This is just what we think, though, and we'd love to know what you're planning to pick up this week. Let us know down in the comments!