The Xbox One family of consoles may not be the most popular gaming machine of this generation but the Xbox Game Pass is undoubtedly one of the things Microsoft has done right. In fact, many claim that this subscription based service may as well be the best thing about owning an Xbox One console. Which is why during a recent conference, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella revealed that this feature will be coming to Windows in the future. As off-handedly as this was announced, the news may be a lot more significant than one might realise.
What is the Xbox Game Pass?
The Xbox Game Pass is arguably the best video game subscription service available right now, with many aptly calling it the “Netflix for Video Games” although it is currently only available for the Xbox One. The subscription costs $9.99, roughly about RM 45, per month and gives instant access to a huge library of Xbox 360, Xbox One and Xbox Play Anywhere. The library currently consists of more than 100 games, including practically every Xbox exclusive and various third-party games, which subscribers can download and install to their Xbox One, and play at will.
The Pass offers all the notable first party exclusives as well as all kinds of AAA and indie third-party titles. Microsoft also promised that all future Microsoft published titles will be available in the Game Pass at launch. At this point, the only limitation subscribers have to face is the limited storage capabilities of their machines.
Some of the notable titles currently available through the Xbox Game Pass are:
And many others. The question remains though, with the Xbox Game Pass coming to Windows, will these game titles be coming to PC?
But why on PC?
Currently, PC gamers do not have any similar services other than PS Now, which only makes its games available through streaming. The most common method for PC gamers to play games is to purchase individual games through Steam, and this discourages a lot of players from trying out games that potentially have lower replay value, as they would just remain in the library and players can’t sell the games. Introducing the Xbox Game Pass would be a massive game changer to how PC gamers play.
For a flat monthly price, players can play as many games as they want from the library for as long as they want. But whether games such as Gears of War 2 and 3, or the Master Chief Collection, as well as Halo 5, that were never made available to PC players will be released to Windows via the Xbox Game Pass remains to be seen. Considering Halo 5 has not been released on PC, despite the Xbox Play Anywhere Initiative, there is reason to believe that not the entire Xbox Game Pass catalogue may be available to the Windows iteration of the service. Nevertheless, one can hope.
How do I sign up?
There is no official date on when the Xbox Game Pass will end up rolling out for Windows. In fact, other than Nadella simply mentioning that it will come to Windows, there is no further information about it. There are already many questions accumulating about this development. How would the Game Pass work on PC? One can speculate that it would be tied together with the Microsoft Store. Would the service retain the Xbox Game Pass name or would it be rebranded? Would the pricing model be the same as it is for the Xbox One currently? Only time can tell.