Phil Spencer, Microsoft executive vice president of gaming, has announced a redesigned Xbox Game Pass for PC players. Since the release of the console version, its popularity has soared, offering access to consistently high-quality titles that rotate every so often to provide variety and a broad selection without tying players to the high costs of acquiring games individually.
The pass for the PC shares the same name as that used for consoles, the Xbox Game Pass, with the aim of “building together with the PC community.” The pass will provide access to a curated library with more than 100 PC games as well as optimization for Windows 10, all from well-known organizations like Bethesda, Deep Silver, Devolver Digital, Paradox Interactive, SEGA, and more.
When new games are released on the Xbox Game Studio, they will be available the same day with the Xbox Game Pass upon global release. In addition, Xbox Game Pass members will have access to discounts in the Microsoft Store of up to 20% off Windows titles and up to 10% off related DLC. So far so good, as the pass seems to offer not only variety to consumers, but also discounts on purchases on games that may eventually rotate out of the library.
That is everything we currently know about the Xbox Game Pass. As a concept, it seems solid as a long-term plan for consumers who may not feel the need to purchase games all the time. However, we do not yet have a proper glimpse into what exactly the library will offer in terms of titles.
This is an important point that Microsoft would be smart to address sooner rather than later, hopefully at E3. To state that a library will consist of 100 games sounds decent, but the number is relatively small compared to the 3,500 games Xbox has alone, and the many others than exist on PC only. The best-case scenario would be that the games are broadly ranged in theme and type, but also contemporary. If too many of the titles are older games that can be purchased easily and cheaply online, that would diminish the value of using such a pass.
With that in mind, there has already been one big title confirmed, Gears of War 5. That in itself should be enough to inspire confidence in potential users that the Xbox Game Pass for PC will be a worthwhile endeavor.
While there is no firm launch window yet for this new service, there should be news at the upcoming E3 event.