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You Don't Want To Pre-Order A Series X. Here's Why

A lot of Xbox fans have already pre-ordered the Xbox Series X and Series S. Some, however, didn't manage to reserve a new Xbox for themselves, but are still keeping their eyes peeled for additional stock at retailers. If you're one of those people, this may be a good time to look back at previous Xbox console launches. While it's understandable you'd want to snag a next-gen Xbox as soon as possible, there are a few good reasons why you should wait a bit before buying one of these new machines.


The biggest fiasco in the history of Xbox console launches is easily the Red Ring of Death. When the Xbox 360 was first released, there was a decent chance that it would quickly stop working altogether, effectively becoming a super expensive paperweight. Gamers would switch on their Xbox 360s and would be greeted with an upsetting sight: the usual green power light around the Xbox logo would instead have turned an ominous red. This was an indicator for a fatal system error that essentially rendered the system completely inoperable. After displaying the Red Ring of Death, 360 consoles couldn't even load the dashboard, much less play any of the new and exciting games that fans had just shelled out for.


While it appeared as though these were merely a series of isolated incidents, the problem became more and more widespread. With people quickly becoming furious with Microsoft, the company made the decision to recall and repair all of the defective consoles at no extra charge for the customer. This ended up costing Microsoft well over a billion dollars and gave many an Xbox customer a headache, but it ended up being a move that restored a lot of faith in the Xbox brand.

Still, the specter of the Red Ring of Death will hang heavily over every Xbox console launch. In fact, a similar problem occurred when the Xbox One finally launched in 2013. Within days of the console's launch, some customers were reporting that their Xbox One units were completely dying after only a few hours of use. Those who didn't have a console immediately "brick" itself ran into other issues with the new system. Some gamers reported that the Xbox One couldn't load any games; the console would instead constantly crash and reboot. Others said their games worked alright, but that the disc drive was absurdly loud, with some customers mentioning loud grinding sounds from the console that made them fear for their game discs.


According to Microsoft at the time, the number of gamers affected by these issues was much smaller than those who encountered the Red Ring of Death. However, the whole debacle did leave a bad taste in people's mouths. In fact, one of Xbox's former bosses had some choice words regarding the whole launch.

In addition to these technical issues, former Microsoft President Robbie Bach took Xbox to task for its mixed messaging during the console's marketing push. He told GeekWire at the time, "I think some of [the problems were] predictable and preventable. If I'm just honest I would say that."

As mentioned previously, many of these issues were handled by Microsoft as quickly and efficiently as possible. However, because the initial launches of these consoles were a little more dramatic than necessary, it may not be the worst thing to wait a little bit and see what kind of kinks get ironed out of the Xbox Series X when it is released. In that case, a launch day purchase wouldn't be your best bet.

The last reason why you may want to wait before buying an Xbox Series X may not seem all that important at first glance. However, for many hardcore fans, one of the biggest disappointments about the impending release of the Xbox Series X is that there won't be a new Halo game launching alongside of it. Fans were concerned after the debut of Halo Infinite's gameplay trailer during the Xbox Series X Games Showcase, with many comparing the game's graphics to previous-generation titles. Following this backlash, it was announced that Halo Infinite would be delayed until sometime in 2021, leaving the Series X without its flagship launch title. 


While there are still plenty of other exciting Xbox Series X games on the way, some fans may opt to wait until Halo Infinite is released before they snag a new console for themselves. Doing this would also mean that Halo fans wouldn't have to concern themselves with the initial rush when the console is released. Again, the lack of Halo Infinite at launch isn't exactly a full-on dealbreaker, but it's not ideal.

If you are still dead set on snagging an Xbox Series X or Series S at launch, you'll either have to keep checking retailers for additional pre-order stock, or perhaps hit up a store in person on Nov. 10. The Xbox Series X retails for $499, while the Series S will cost you $299.