Xbox Sales: TA Team Picks (May 12th)

Tom West - May 12th 2022

Xbox sales are always a great time to pick up some bargains to flesh out your game collection, and to assist you with that endeavour, the TA news team is here to recommend a few worthy additions.

Do you enjoy spending your time in the bustling streets of a metropolis, or would rather disappear in the vast expanse of space? This week's offerings can appease both extremes, and when you throw in an overcharged DLC pack and an explorer that can't help but get herself into trouble, you've got yourself a dizzyingly good time that'd make a Waltzer operator blush. Here's what we found in the Xbox sales this week...

Xbox sale bargains

Kes — Outer Wilds: Archaeologist Edition

Outer Wilds is one of my all-time favourite games, so of course, I’m going to slingshot it into the sales picks whenever I can. However, the more surprising part of the Archaeologist Edition is the additional DLC that comes with it, called the Echoes of the Eye. While I was anticipating the new spooky expansion, I was actually pretty nervous about it — the ambitious new content takes place in the perfectly formed, perfectly paced, and perfectly well-rounded main game you had already played.

The same 20-minute loop plays before the sun explodes, the same spaceship blows up above you, and the planets still collapse into black holes, struggle with endless typhoons, and deposit sand between one another. Off you go, intrepid explorer: investigate. It’s pure fun, backed up by some of the best environmental design, low-key writing, and music I’ve seen. The Outer Wilds achievements are a rollock, as well.

The new stuff takes place on a near-invisible space station. Just finding it is a task, but one that rewards with an incredible enclosed environment filled with a 2001: A Space Odyssey-style rotating-wheel ecology. I’m not going to spoil anything else because in my first loop I nearly bawled twice at how damn cool it was. It has its own mechanics, its own siloed story, and amps up the creepy factor enough that a boy needs to play with a diaper. It’s a great edition, and one worth paying for at full price: let alone on sale!

Outer Wilds: Archaeologist Edition

Outer Wilds: Archaeologist Edition contains Outer Wilds base game and Echoes of the Eye expansion.

Luke — Tiny Tina's Assault on Dragon Keep: A Wonderlands One-shot Adventure

I did enjoy Tiny Tina's Wonderlands despite its pathetic post-launch support so far, but it simply wasn't a patch on the all-timer of a DLC pack that inspired it. And now, Tiny Tina's Assault on Dragon Keep is available on its own, and this week, it's half price. If you never played Borderlands 2's best expansion, here's an affordable opportunity to make amends. It's a flavourful hybrid of Borderlands' usual sci-fi shooty-looty action and fantasy tabletop RPG nonsense as Tina runs a session for the Vault Hunters during some downtime, and it works remarkably well. Fun fact: I loved the DLC back in the day despite having never actually played D&D, and now I'm playing and running sessions on the regular, this was even better when I replayed it. Point is, you don't have to be a Dungeon Master's Guide-carrying nerd to enjoy it (it's Borderlands, people... the bar is pretty low), so don't let that put you off enjoying what is a ton of content for the price. If you're still on the fence about Wonderlands, drop five bucks on this as a test. If you don't enjoy it, there's no way you'd like a version that is worse.
Tiny Tina's Assault on Dragon Keep: A Wonderlands One-shot Adventure

Smash skeletons, defeat dragons, and battle giant golems in Tiny Tina's Assault on Dragon Keep: A Wonderlands One-Shot Adventure. Experience the acclaimed 2013 quest jam-packed with fantasy, fun, and mountains of magical loot!

Sean — Watch Dogs: Legion

Watch Dogs: Legion is one of those games you play 50 hours of and then forget nearly every single thing about it because it’s so distinctly average and lacks any real memorable moments. So why am I choosing it as my recommended sales pick this week? Well, it’s finally down to a price that I would consider worth it ($14.99/£17.99/€20.99). While it might still be too expensive for some, I think this is a fair price. Watch Dogs: Legion isn’t a bad game; it’s well made, and its open-world representation of a near-future London is excellent, but it just lacks oomph. The story is fine and does go to a few interesting places (DedSec gets framed for a bombing, and the British government hires a naughty security firm to restore order to the streets and hunt down DedSec. It’s then your job to liberate London and clear the hacker group’s name), and the gameplay is fine too — if you’ve played Watch Dogs 2, which was a lot of fun, expect more of the same here. There is one big difference with Legion, though: You can play as anyone! You can recruit pretty much any NPC you like into DedSec, from old grannies that can hardly move to stealthy hitmen that come equipped with silenced pistols. Each character has their own abilities, equipment, and drawbacks, and once they die, they can be lost permanently. The game encourages you to play with a variety of different NPCs, but ultimately, this mechanic falls flat. Why would I want to play as a pensioner, who literally could die of old age at any moment, when I could play as an Albion guard that comes equipped with a gun and can turn invisible? This play-as-anyone system is pretty unbalanced and only serves as a novelty.

As for the Watch Dogs: Legion achievements, I think it has a pretty decent list. There are a few creative achievements here (The Royal Tour and You Don't See Me) that are fun to complete, as well as a few open-world stinkers (Bottoms Up and Piece De Resistance). I haven’t played the game’s DLC or Resistance mode, so I can’t speak for those, but the base achievement list is enjoyable.

I know I have been a bit down on Legion here, but if you’re in the market for something to play where you don’t really have to think, or if you want to play something while listening to an audiobook or a podcast at the same time, Legion is the game for you. It’s a solid 7/10 game (especially now that Ubisoft has fixed all of those performance issues) that does provide a lot of fun, even if you won’t remember any of it a month or two later.

Watch Dogs®: Legion

Build a resistance from anyone in the world as you fight to take back a near-future London facing its downfall. Experience never-before-seen gameplay innovation that allows you to recruit and play as any character. Everyone has a unique skill to help your team. Recipient of over 65 E3 awards and nominations.

Tom — Tomb Raider - Definitive Survival Trilogy

With the recent news that Embracer Group has acquired a bundle of Square Enix studios and franchises, I thought it would be a great week to highlight just how good the rebooted trilogy of Tomb Raider games are. The bundle is currently rocking a very pleasing 60% discount, and I can't help but wonder if Square Enix gave the franchise a similar discount when Embracer purchased it, and the large list of other franchises, for $300 million.

Importantly, the Tomb Raider trilogy is great — well, the first two are anyway, I've not played the third one yet — and is easily worth the price it's currently available for. The bundle packs in Tomb Raider - Definitive Edition, Rise of the Tomb Raider: 20 Year Celebration, and Shadow of the Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition, so you get all of the DLC along with them. The trilogy will take you on Lara's journey from young upstart to seasoned adventurer, and throws you into plenty of life-threatening situations across vastly different landscapes. Aside from the Tomb Raider - Definitive Edition achievements, all of the games' achievements can be earned via co-op or single-player. If you enjoy adventure games and haven't dived into these yet, I recommend you grab them for your collection, you won't regret it... probably.

Tomb Raider: Definitive Survivor Trilogy

Tomb Raider: Definitive Survivor Trilogy is the complete edition of the award-winning Tomb Raider origin games. This collection contains all the definitive edition content from each critically acclaimed prequel title—Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition, Rise of the Tomb Raider: 20 Year Celebration, and Shadow of the Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition. Follow Lara on her formative journey across the world, starting in Tomb Raider trapped on the shrouded island of Yamatai off the coast of Japan, to the harsh Siberian tundra hiding an immortal secret in Rise of the Tomb Raider, and finally to the mountainous landscape of Peru to uncover a cataclysmic power in Shadow of the Tomb Raider. With all the definitive edition content from each game, this Trilogy promises dozens of hours of breathtaking exploration, challenging puzzle-solving, and survival combat with Lara as she becomes the Tomb Raider she was destined to become.

Is anything here rubbing you the right way, or do you have a suggestion of your own? We'd love to know, so let us know down below!