Early this morning, Microsoft announced that it will be taking a page out of Electronic Arts’ playbook, by debuting its own Xbox Game Pass subscription service to select members of its Xbox Insiders Program. Then, following that timed test, a full release will occur sometime this spring, bringing with it a much more robust line-up of games.
Through the Xbox Game Pass, Xbox One owners will be able to unlock access to more than 100 different Xbox One and backwards compatible Xbox 360 games for just $9.99 per month. However, as we hinted at above, the service’s preview test will be limited in this respect. As such, those who subscribe now, through the Insider Program, will find that the majority of what’s on offer is arcade games.
When the service launches in full, it will offer the greater Xbox community a wide variety of different titles, including Halo 5: Guardians, Saints Row IV: Re-Elected, LEGO Batman, NBA 2K16, Mad Max, Gears of War: Ultimate Edition, Payday 2, Fable III and the Mega Man Legacy Collection. These are just a handful of examples, though, as the entire list of planned offerings has not been made available as of yet.
One other nice, but ultimately necessary feature, is the fact that anyone who purchases the Xbox Game Pass will be offered discounts when they go to buy add-ons for any of its titles. The same will be true for those who end up wanting to buy any of the games outright, although it may end up being more beneficial to just continue subscribing to the Pass. Either way, those options will be made available, and anyone who chooses to play one of these games will be required to download the full thing to their harddrive, just like normal. That means there will be no need to worry about streaming, or anything like that.
Keep in mind, though, that this is currently a testing phase for the Xbox Game Pass, meaning that those who subscribe now will only be able to access an early version of the app. Microsoft also wants to let it be known that early adopters may experience bugs, and that the app’s language settings will be locked to English for the time being.
For more information, make sure to check out Phil Spencer’s post on the Xbox Wire.