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The first Xbox Series X console update lets you pre-load games heading to Game Pass

Xbox Series X and S
(Image credit: Microsoft)

Microsoft's first Xbox Console Update of the new generation has arrived. In a blog post, Jonathan Hildebrandt, principal program manager at Xbox Experiences, explained the features included in the Xbox Series X's first major update.

The November update's main addition is the ability to pre-load certain Xbox Game Pass games. You'll now be able to pre-install games that are heading to the subscription service, rather than waiting for them to arrive before you can download them. The new feature won't be available for all titles, but if you're not able to pre-load your game, you will at least be able to queue it for download as soon as it's available.

Next up is a suite of new dynamic backgrounds. The feature, added specifically for the new consoles, lets players customise their home screen with motion and colour. The update includes six new presets, based around classic Xbox themes and popular past themes, and Hildebrandt says there'll be more new arrivals in future.

Elsewhere, the update makes it easier to figure out what each of the games in your library are capable of. A new 'Optimized for Series X|S' badge will let you know which games have been upgraded by their developers to take advantage of the next-gen hardware to help you filter through older titles in particular. It'll also now be easier to identify which games are using the consoles' Auto HDR tech, as a new tag will appear when you open the guide while a title is taking advantage of the feature.

The November Console Update is available now, but if you haven't managed to find yourself a new console yet, check out our Xbox Series X price guide for a helping hand.

Ali Jones

I'm GamesRadar's deputy news editor, working with Ben T across our gaming news articles. I started my journalistic career while getting my degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick, where I also worked as Games Editor on the student newspaper, The Boar. Since then, I've run the news sections at PCGamesN and Kotaku UK, and also regularly contributed to PC Gamer. As you might be able to tell, PC is my platform of choice, so you can regularly find me playing League of Legends or Steam's latest indie hit.