XDefiant release date, gameplay details, Year 1 roadmap, and more (2024)

When was the XDefiant release date? One of the biggest releases of 2024 for first-person shooter fans, XDefiant’s goal is to be a breath of fresh air while also crafting a nostalgic experience that fans of older Call of Duty titles will love.

Following a few closed and open beta tests throughout 2023 and early 2024, XDefiant impressed uswith its gameplay and map design,establishing itself as a potential newcomer to ourbest FPS gameslist. However, actually getting the final product out the doorwasa bit of a fiasco for Ubisoft. After a long struggle though,it’s finally here and is one of thebest free shooting gamesyou can play right now. So, put together your best XDefiant loadout anddive in.

  • Release date
  • Delays
  • Gameplay
  • Roadmap
  • Alternatives

XDefiant release date

The XDefiant release datewas Tuesday, May 21, 2024 for PS5 and Xbox Series X|S consoles, alongside PC. The game went live at 10am PT/ 1pm ET/ 6pm BST.

After years of missed deadlines, delays, and development issues, Ubisoftfinally confirmedon May 2, 2024 thatXDefiant would launch later that monthwith a six-week preseason. As soon as the preseason concludes, its full live service roadmapbegins with the start of Season 1.

As mentioned though, getting to the XDefiant release date was far from straightforward.

Ubisoft previously promised that XDefiant would launch sometime before March 31, 2024.However, it missed that deadline and then revealed that the game would need one final server test before committing to a release date. That server test took place across all platforms in April, and executive producerMark Rubin saidit went “really well”.When the test wrapped,Ubisoft felt confident it could deliverthe smooth multiplayer game experience that fans expected.

Below you can read the statement Ubisoft issued confirming that XDefiant would be delayed and wouldn’t release before March 31.

The March deadline was actually the second major deadline that XDefiant missed. Initially, Ubisoft promised that the game would launch in the summer of 2023.The below statement from October 9, 2023, announced that particular delay.

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There have been various reasons – some officially confirmed, others rumored – as to why XDefiantwas pushed back for so long. Below you can find a timeline of events explaining why the shooterwas delayed so many times.

Why was XDefiant delayed?

Originally set for a summer 2023 release date, things seemed to be going well with XDefiant at first. After a few closed beta sessions, Rubin confirmed during Ubisoft Forward 2023 that the game would be having an open beta session in June 2023 for Xbox Series X|S, PS5, and PC.

Following the open beta, the developers quietly delayed the last-gen versions of the game only, stating in a tweet that the team is “working on last-gen platforms for later” – with how long it’staken just to get the current-gen versions out the door, we wouldn’t be surprisedif the PS4 and Xbox One versions have been shelved completely.

After a long summer of waiting for the game to launch,XDefiant failed a QA test for major platforms, as stated in an Ubisoft blog post from September 11, and a Public Test Session for further testing took place shortly after that in late September.

Unfortunately, on October 9, Ubisoft released a statement saying that it discovered “inconsistencies in the game experience” during this Public Test Session and that it would be indefinitely delaying XDefiant. Despite initially looking on track to meet its Summer 2023 target window, it’s clear that there were some deeper issues with the game that required a lot more development time.

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In a tweet on November 1, 2023, Rubin confirmed that themain culpritfor the delay was due to frame spikescaused by some anti-cheat software, and he also confirmed that the team had replaced the social system due to issues it had under heavy load. Not only that, but Rubin confirmed that the team behind XDefiant was also replacing the “low-level network transport layer”, whichwould help reduce latency and occasional de-sync.

Ubisoftalso switched the servers over to Linux, which Rubin said would improve the overall server performance.

In anupdate from executive producer Mark Rubin on January 27, 2024,he further explained that the major blockers to getting XDefiant out the door were its Party system, netcode, and servers.

InFebruary 2024, a financial report from Ubisoft suggested that XDefiant would be out before the end of the 2023/24 financial year, which would mean it would be in players’ hands before March 31, 2024. There wereencouraging signs thatit would hit that deadline, with trophies appearing out of nowhere and plans for a Rainbow Six Siege-themed Season 1 going live early.

However, as we got closer and closer to that deadline it seemed more and more likely that XDefiant would yet again miss a release window. Reports from insiders claimed that, as well as all the technical setbacks, another big reason for the delays to XDefiant was Ubisoft’s desire to make it as Call of Duty-like as possible. This was denied by developers, and Rubin had also previously expressed that the game wasn’t interested in imitating CODin an interview with us last year.

On March 29, XDefiant released a statement confirmingthat itwould be delayed again. No new release window was given, but Ubisoft said a date would be set after itconcluded a server stress test.

From April 19-21, the stress test was conducted across PS5, Xbox Series X|S, and PC. While players were met with a fair few issues, and the gameplay felt somewhat heavier and clunkier than previous betas in 2023, Rubin deemed the test a success and that a final release date for XDefiant would be announced imminently.

Finally, on May 2, FPS fans got the news they’d waited a very long time for: a solid, exact, XDefiant release date of May 21.

XDefiant gameplay

A 6v6 arena-based shooter at its core, XDefiant is an arcade-like experience that both casual FPS players and competitive fans can enjoy.

The aforementioned Mark Rubin is leading developmenton XDefiant and that’s an important thing to note. Heproduced the original Modern Warfare series, highly touted as one of the best subseries in Call of Duty history. Bringing his knowledge (and his transparency with fans) to this brand-new IP has certainly helped generate interest around it.

While it sounds great having an FPS game inspired by old Call of Duty titles, that’s not all. The XDefiant factions – which are inspired by various major Ubisoft IPs like Far Cry, Watch Dogs, and more – all offer different abilities, giving XDefiant a much more team-oriented feel over recent COD games.

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Picking a faction and class is only half the battle, as you’ll want to keep an eye on the XDefiant meta to see which of the many XDefiant weapons are currently on top, especially if you’re competitive like us. Like recent COD games, there is an attachment system that lets you customize your weapons.

There are a bunch of XDefiant game modes, most of which you’ve likely seen versions of in other FPS games like Domination or Escort.It’s also been confirmed thatXDefiant doesn’t have skill-based matchmaking in its main modes, which Call of Duty fans are incredibly happy about.

XDefiant did ship with a “Welcome Playlist” for players below level 25 that doesutilizeSBMM, but this is only to help with onboarding newbies. Beyond that,it won’t be present in casual matches. Ranked modes will have ranked-based matchmakingthough. In the same thread,

In a social media post, Rubin highlights the possibility for “yearly prestiges,” seeing as XDefiant’s lifecycle will (hopefully) extend far beyond thetypical 12-month shelf life of your typical Call of Duty game.

We’ve sank a lot of hours into XDefiant, and we’ve founditto be super enjoyable. With the gunplay and the individual faction abilities, it reminds us of games like Call of Duty Black Ops 3 and Black Ops 4 – and that’s not a bad thing at all.

XDefiant roadmap

Ubisoft has confirmed a roadmap for the first year of XDefiant, which would come into effect following a six-week ‘pre-season’ at launch. Ubisoft promised that during XDefiant’s first year, the game would receive four new factions, 12 new weapons, and 12 new maps, as well as new modes, competitive options, and extra comfort features for accessibility and learning the game.

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This is in addition to all the content that was available at launch, which already offered 24 weapons, 14 maps, five game modes, and five factions.

XDefiant alternatives

If for whatever reason you give XDefiant a go and it isn’t to your liking, then there are some excellent alternatives out there you can turn to instead.

We’ll start with the most obvious, and that’s Call of Duty. The current main series game at the time of writing, Modern Warfare 3, boasts really enjoyable multiplayer action and its chaotic playlists and limited-time modes are a hoot. It’s competitive ranked experience is arguably the best its been for a number of years too. However, the likelihood is that if you’re excited for XDefiant, you’re probably a COD player already. So what else is there?

We wholeheartedly recommend Embark Studios’ destructive arena shooter The Finals. With several game modes, three classes to choose from that have distinct abilities and weapons, and a totally unique feel and aesthetic compared to most other shooters out there, it’s an absolute blast.The main difference between The Finals and XDefiant is that you can destroy pretty much everything in Embark’s FPS – slap a C4 on the side of a building, and watch it turn to dust.

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You could also give Ubisoft’s far more tactical FPS experience, Rainbow Six Siege, a go. Be warned though, this is a far more strategic experience than the chaotic, run-and-gun gameplay found in XDefiant.

So there you have it – a full primer on Ubisoft’s shooter. If you really want to make your mark, it may be worth picking up one of the best Xbox controllers orbest PS5 controllersso you can dominate opponents and blast your way through ranks and battle passes. If you want to see if there are any other competitive titles on the horizon, our new PS5 games and new Xbox games lists have all of theupcoming games that are arriving soon.

XDefiant release date, gameplay details, Year 1 roadmap, and more (2024)


Is XDefiant ever coming out? ›

The XDefiant release date was on Tuesday, May 21, 2024 and is available on PC, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series X|S.

How much will XDefiant cost? ›

Ubisoft's worlds collide in a free-to-play, first-person arena shooter where you compete to be the best in fast-paced online matches! Anti-Cheat software: BattlEye Anti-Cheat solution is automatically installed with this game and required to play this game; you will not be able to launch the game if you uninstalled it.

Is XDefiant free on Xbox? ›

Competitive arena shooter XDefiant is now available to play for free on Xbox Series X|S, kicking off with a preseason and featuring five Ubisoft franchise-inspired factions – Phantoms, Cleaners, Libertad, Echelon, and DedSec – each with their own unique abilities and skills.

Where can I download XDefiant? ›

To get XDefiant, visit Ubisoft's official website and navigate to XDefiant. Once there, locate the "Play Free Now" button. Click on it, and you will see three different options that allow you to download the game on the PC, PlayStation, or Xbox.

What is the max level in XDefiant? ›

However, one clear cut difference is the characters and their abilities that players will be able to use in a match. In regards to the max level that players will be on the hunt for, this number is currently set to 100, with players not being able to prestige afterwards.

Will XDefiant be crossplay? ›

Yes, XDefiant supports crossplay between PS5, Xbox Series X and S, and PC. This was confirmed by the developers, and can be seen while playing the game post release on May 21, 2024. Not only does XDefiant have crossplay, it also features cross-progression.

Does XDefiant have aim assist? ›

We have put together an overview of the available accessibility features in XDefiant. General Does this game include aim assist features? Yes, you can enable aim assist settings in the Controller menu in-game.

What engine is XDefiant using? ›


How much GB is XDefiant? ›

XDefiant isn't going to take as much storage as other FPS games, thankfully. You will need the following amount of room for XDefiant to download: PC: 35 GB. Xbox Series X|S: 55 GB.

Can I play XDefiant on PS4? ›

Which consoles and platforms can play XDefiant? XDefiant is currently available on Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 5 and PC via the developer's own Ubisoft Connect.

Does XDefiant have a Battle Royale? ›

XDefiant also doesn't include a battle royale mode and is focused instead on fast-paced action.

What game modes will XDefiant have? ›

There are 6 game modes in XDefiant that you can queue up for, excluding the Welcome Playlist which is a random rotation of Escort, Zone Control, Domination, Occupy, and Hot Shot for players under level 25. It's worth noting that skill-based matchmaking is switched on for this introductory playlist.

Can you play XDefiant on PS5? ›

XDefiant launches on PS5, Xbox Series X|S, and PC via Ubisoft Connect on May 21. A free-to-play multiplayer arena shooter, XDefiant lets players battle it out as various factions inspired from Ubisoft games across five different game modes and 14 unique maps.

What characters are in XDefiant? ›

All Characters In XDefiant
  • leaners (The Division) De Rosa. Green. Kersey.
  • Libertad (Far Cry 6) Beto. Iselda. Seleste.
  • Phantoms (Ghost Recon Phantoms) Gorgon. Rhino. Singa.
  • Echelon (Splinter Cell) Malee. Rafa. Samir.
  • DedSec (Watch Dogs) Gia. Jing. Sebastian.
May 24, 2024

Will XDefiant have competitive? ›

XDefiant was revealed over two years ago as a new free-to-play, competitive, class based, first person shooter project within the Tom Clancy universe of video games.

What is the new Tom Clancy game in 2024? ›

Tom Clancy's The Division Resurgence


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