If you're planning to spend big in 2019, the Black Friday game deals in November are the best chance you've got to snatch up a great price on almost anything video game related. Throughout both Black Friday and Cyber Monday, retailers slash the price on consoles, accessories, actual games, and all manner of tech - it's a fantastic opportunity to get that headset you've always wanted, to splash out on a Nintendo console, or to add another title to your 'pile of shame'. Hey, maybe you'll finish all your games by the time next Black Friday comes around!
Those seeking the best Black Friday game deals are in the right place too, as we'll be updating this guide once November arrives, to make sure you don't miss a thing. The very best bundles and consoles tend to sell out pretty fast, as they drop considerably in price, so you need to really focus on 'the thing' you need, before mopping up all the other impulse purchases that you'll inevitably make. The following guide not only explains what Black Friday is, when it is, and how long it lasts, but it also details money-saving tips and gives information on what you can expect to get cheap, based on data from last year and trends from 2019. It's actually pretty scientific, and our team of deals hunters (we do actually have a team for that) have poured their knowledge into this guide.
So, get ready for the Black Friday game deals. It's only September, sure, but they'll soon be here, and it's a superb chance to stock up on the tech you need at the best prices you'll see for most of the year. Be sure to keep an eye on our Black Friday TV deals and Black Friday gaming PC guide too.
Black Friday game deals - when do they start?
Ok, if you're serious about shopping the Black Friday game deals, here are some key dates for you. Black Friday itself is November 29, the day after Thanksgiving. Often retailers save their absolute primo deals for the Friday itself, so if you see something you love on Nov 29 and it's the right price, that is the best time to buy it. We also have Cyber Monday on December 2, which is less of an event in its own right, but still a significant date in the whole Black Friday sales period. Traditionally, Cyber Monday was the biggie for tech and PC, but that no longer holds true - gaming sees discounts throughout the Black Friday sales.
Now, because retail events get bigger every year, you can expect the Black Friday game deals to kick off long before that Nov 29 date. We usually see deals starting about a week before, so you could get discounts from around November 21-22 (even earlier, in some cases) and they'll last until... well, after Christmas usually. While you'll maybe see Black Friday deals ending around December 5, the low prices carry on until the Festive season is over, and you've had that rush post-Christmas of everyone spending their gift money. This one is a marathon, not a sprint, people.
Black Friday game deals - what will they be?
What will the Black Friday game deals actually be? Well, we can make a few sensible predictions based on what we saw last year, and what we've seen in 2019 so far.
1. Xbox One will get deep discounts
Microsoft isn't messing around. It knows it lost ground to Sony this generation, it knows it has a strong cross-generational library of games, and it wants to bring in as many people as possible before launching into next-gen. We've seen Xbox One S systems go as cheap as $200 during events like Prime Day, we think you'll see them dip below that $175 threshold during Black Friday. What's more, you'll get a couple of games thrown in too. Xbox One X will follow the same aggressive discounting. The console dipped below $399 during E3, and it'll get to $350 or below with some Black Friday Xbox One X deals. You'll likely see those offers come with a AAA game too.
2. PS4 will lean heavily on bundles
Sony is winning, so it doesn't need to try that hard. Black Friday PS4 deals will follow the same pattern as they did in 2018, with one big exception. Last year we saw Sony completely rely on the launch of a PS4 Pro bundle that included Red Dead Redemption 2, and it sold at pretty much full price ($399). There was a PS4 Slim bundle too, which also went for $299. In 2019, there's no killer game to rely on for full-priced bundles, so Sony will shift tactic a little. Sure, we may see a small saving on PS4 Pro and Slim, but that will likely come from retailers undercutting each other. What we'll get more of is bundles: PS4 Pro with Death Stranding and Days Gone? Very likely. PS4 Slim with Spider-Man and a Greatest Hits game? Certain. You're less likely to save money on PS4 than with Xbox One, but you'll get a handful of games thrown in during Black Friday for sure.
3. Nintendo won't cut Switch prices... but retailers will
Nintendo is in a strange position this Black Friday. With the launch of the Switch Lite happening mere weeks before, you can bet that the best deals you'll see on Ninty's newest version of the console will only be bundle-based. You'll maybe save $20-30 by getting a Lite with a new-ish game, but won't see reductions on the console itself. The older version of the Switch is more of a mystery. Nintendo doesn't really do discounts, but last year saw retailers like Amazon knocking $50 off the retail price of the Switch, which is something we're likely to see replicated in 2019. Given that Switch Lite is a bit of a paired-back version of the 'full-fat' console, Nintendo won't be in any mood to lessen demand for the Switch or suggest it's being replaced or devalued. Short version: Nintendo won't cut the price of either of its consoles, but retailers will likely reduce the older model to tempt people to buy.
4. November is prime time to go PC
While console makers fuss over bundles and next-gen plans, PC parts have rarely been better value for money. In turn, that means gaming PCs are superb value for money, and will be even better during Black Friday. The GPU is the most costly component of any gaming PC or laptop, and there's a price war happening between Nvidia, AMD, and er, Nvidia (which is muscling out its own 20-series cards with new 20-series Super cards). The end result is that graphics cards are cheaper, and therefore all builds are cheaper too. SSDs are tumbling in price, and DDR4 RAM is steadily getting ever more affordable. 144Hz screens are increasingly the norm for both laptops and monitors too, so unless you're looking to pack in 4K or touch-screen tech (which isn't necessary for gaming), you can grab great laptop builds for less. Couple this pricing trend with the fact manufacturers always slash prices over Black Friday, to make room for next year's models and... it's the year of PC gaming.
5. Games prices will vary
Ok, the actual games in the Black Friday game deals will be a mixture of amazing discounts and 'meh'. The big hitters that will definitely go on offer will be all last year's AAA games and those from early 2019, like Red Dead Redemption 2, Mortal Kombat 11, Assassin's Creed Odyssey and Resi 2. You'll definitely see decent savings on some of this summer's big games - we predict $20 off both Control and Borderlands 3. The huge winter blockbusters like Gears 5 and Death Stranding won't get decent price cuts, but are likely to be freely bundled with consoles. Notice how we haven't mentioned Nintendo games here: discounts on Switch titles are rare, and not usually implemented by Nintendo, so you're not going to see any cheap Nintendo games unless retailers slash prices. Our guess? Mario Odyssey will go for $30, Zelda for $45, Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle for $25, and Smash Bros for maybe $45 too. Nothing fantastic, but hey, better than paying $60 full price.
6. Gaming TVs will be everywhere
As certain as death and taxes, Black Friday will see the slashing of 4K TV prices. This is great news for gamers, because you can either pick up a decent sized 4K panel for less than $300 (from a good manufacturer like LG or Samsung) or upgrade to an OLED or QLED TV for less than $1000. That may seem like a lot of scratch, but the difference in picture quality from regular 4K to OLED is very noticeable. So, whether you're looking to pop your 4K cherry, or upgrade to a sleeker model, it's best to save your money for Black Friday.
Black Friday game deals - money saving tips
While it's great to get a Black Friday game deal or two, you don't always get the best value for money. Sometimes retailers will deliberately hike up prices a few weeks before November, only to cut them back to 'normal levels' and insist they're special offers. So, how do you know if you're getting an actual decent deal, or if you're just paying normal rates? Here are a few tips.
1. Make a list now
You'll already have a good idea of what you want to buy during the Black Friday game deals, so make sure you make a note now. Maybe pop it onto an Amazon wishlist, or keep a doc on your PC. There really aren't many saving events in August and September, so you get a good idea of what the 'average price' is for something. If you have a list of stuff you really want, you'll easily be able to see what the real discount is, come Black Friday, and whether you're getting good value. Just don't wait until October to do it, or you'll be seeing inflated prices.
2. Price comparison sites are your friend
There are several price comparison sites - like CamelCamelCamel - which will help you see the price history of an item. Give them a quick check before buying something, if you're unsure. But what if other retailers have the same item cheaper? Well, we've got a bunch of price comparison tools, so we actually do all that work for you if you see something in our guides. Failing that, you can always check your favorite retailers manually, but that takes time.
3. If you like it, get it
While we all like to get something at the rock bottom price, sometimes that isn't possible. Often the most popular stuff will sell out in minutes, when you're not even online, and that means you have to get whatever you want for either full-price or less of a discount. One common-sense tip we always give is that if you like what you see, and it's at a historically great price, then you should buy first and regret it later. Chances are you're actually getting the best deal and, even if you pay a few dollars more, you're guaranteeing you're getting the thing you actually want at a price you're happy with. Here are today's best console prices.
Black Friday game deals - what happened last year?
While we're looking ahead to the Black Friday game deals in 2019, it always pays to look back at the savings from last year. After all, they give you a good idea of what to expect in November, and allow you to pick out the true bargains from the 'actually-not-that-great-I'll-save-my-money-thanks' kinda deals. Below are a list of the best deals from the 2018 event - none of them are still available, obviously, but it gives you a good idea of what happened during the blur of Black Friday last November.
Xbox One X is $409 right now at Walmart (save 20%) View Deal
Microsoft's amazing 4K console is now $90 less. Suggest you snap it up right now from Walmart, while stocks last (it's already at in-store pickup only).
Xbox One S 1TB console with Minecraft for $199 at Walmart (save $100)
This is the lowest price we've seen on an Xbox One S console. It's not an X, but still does HDR and plays 4K Blu-rays, so at $200 it's a great price.View Deal Official Xbox One controller is $39 at Walmart (save $20) View Deal
Grab yourself a new Xbox controller, in a variety of colors, for $20 less at Walmart. It's an essential, so you should stock up now.
12 months of Xbox Game pass for $69.99 from Amazon (save 42%) View Deal
You get a whole year of Xbox Game Pass here, for $50-off. Game Pass grants you access to 100s of new Xbox One games, for free, and you can download and play at your leisure. It's Netflix for games, essentially.
Red Dead Redemption 2 (PS4) and a $10 Google Play gift card for $59.89 at Walmart
One of 2018's best and most sprawling games available on Cyber Monday with a $10 Google Play bonus. View Deal Shadow of the Tomb Raider is $36.30 at Walmart (save 40%) View Deal
One of the most overlooked games of 2018, you can grab Lara's latest for over $20 off the normal price. Available on PS4 and Xbox One.
Mirror's Edge Catalyst is $11.86 at Walmart (save $28) View Deal
Wow - this is a great price on a game you probably missed first time around. For less than $12, you get a smart, open world exploration game from the makers of Battlefield 5.
Nintendo Switch Joy-Con (pair) is $68 at Walmart (save $11) View Deal
Again, console accessories for Switch rarely see discounts, so with $10 off this Joy-Con set, that's a damn good deal. Time to stock up (they're already down to in-store pickup only).
Nintendo Switch Pro Controller is $59.99 at Amazon (save 14%) View Deal
And if you're looking to play Smash Bros. this Holiday season, you'll need a Pro Controller. Buy this one now, from Amazon, for $10 less.
Razer Blade 15 with i7-8750, 1060 MaxQ, 16GB RAM, and 2TB HDD is $1699 at Walmart (save $500) View Deal
This is a good spec for a Razer Blade 15, and with $500 off the list price, it's a good deal too. That CPU is quick, and there's plenty of RAM. The 1060 MaxQ will do a good job as well.
Sennheiser Game One gaming headset is $129.51 (save 48%) on Amazon View Deal
Wow. One of the best gaming headsets you can buy and it has 48% off the sticker price. Sennheiser is a big name in audio, and this is a great product.
WD MyPassport 2TB external hard drive for PS4 is $69.99 at Amazon (save 22%) View Deal
Looking to expand the storage of your console? Our favorite HDD, the MyPassport, is $20 off right now. Well worth buying.
Samsung QLED 55" 4K TV (Q6FN) for $1097.99 at Jet.com (save $400) View Deal
Wow! A Samsung QLED TV for just over $1000? This TV is brilliant for gaming, so you need to buy this right now. The colors are incredible, the response rate is good, and this has Vsync for PC play.
Samsung 49"UN49NU8000FXZA Ultra HD LED TV $647.99 at Walmart
This Samsung TV offers performance close to the impressive QLED range if you
mess with the image settings , but at a much lower price. Add in HDR+, Auto Game Mode, and Samsung's SmartThings set-up app, and this is a real great offer.View Deal Secretlab Neue gaming chair is $549 (was $699) at Secretlab View Deal
This great gaming chair has 21% off for Cyber Monday, and it's a damn good chair too. The discount only last another couple of days.
PS4 Pro + God of War is £349 at Very.co.uk (save £40) View Deal
If you want a new Pro with one of the best games of 2018, this is the bundle for you. The Pro is normally £350 by itself, so you're getting a top game essentially for free.
South Park: Fractured But Whole is £17.99 at Argos (save £25) View Deal
Need a new RPG to sink your teeth into? The newest South Park is better than half price at Argos.
Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 over-ear headphones are £190 at Amazon (was £379) View Deal
These are superb headphones, ideally suited for all uses - not just gaming. No mic on these, but they're such an incredible price, you can live with that.
Nintendo Switch official case is £4.49 (was £14.99) View Deal
This is a huge saving of 66% on the official Switch case. That's an amazing deal, especially if you just got that new console.
LG 65" 4K TV (UK6300PLB) is £758 at Amazon (save £640) View Deal
This massive LG panel has a massive saving too. It was £1400, but you can now grab it for way, WAY less if you act fast.
Asus ROG Swift WQHD 27" 165Hz gaming monitor is £579 at AO.com View Deal
Our favorite gaming monitor is reduced by around £200 here, and is a brilliant all-rounder.
Logitech G502 gaming mouse is £39.99 at Amazon (was £69.99) View Deal
This is our favorite gaming mouse, and it's currently better than half-price. You need to buy today, however, as the deal ends very soon.
Black Friday game deals - our promise to you
The wealth of Black Friday game deals that go on offer in November is, quite frankly, very confusing. We're here to hunt down the genuine best deals, and tell you about them, to help save you money. We know games, we know PC, we know hardware and peripherals, so we know what you might actually want.
We only recommend deals that are actually good. By 'good' we mean: Is the product or bundle ACTUALLY worth buying? Would we buy it ourselves? If the answer is 'Yes' to both these questions, we'll include it here. And by 'deals' we mean: Is the product or bundle actually a bargain? Is there a big enough saving to genuinely recommend you buy it immediately, or seriously consider buying it? Again, if the answer is 'Yes' to both these questions, we will include it in this feature.
We won't include bad deals or poor products, and we will never recommend products from retailers that we don't trust ourselves. Below is a list of some of our most popular guides - to help you inform your buying decisions even further.
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