Xbox Game Pass came to us in the year of 2017, and back then, it was a novelty, nothing more. But now, five years later, it became the 400-pound Gorilla we know today.
According to Statista, at the beginning of 2022, Xbox Game Pass had over 25 million subscribers, an impressive number indeed.
Do I need the Xbox Game Pass if I am a PC player?
Technically you do not need the XBOX Game Pass to play games on your PC. You can buy games the old fashioned way via DVD and never need the Game pass.
But…you should have an Xbox Game Pass!
From the impressive assortment of AAA and indie games included to the subscription price of just 9.99$ (as of 2022) per month. Even if you have a library full of games, you can save hundreds of future dollars with Game Pass. Just pay the subscription price and play anything you want in the Xbox library.
If I have Game Pass on Xbox, can I use it on pc?
If you own Xbox Live Gold, the console version of Game Pass, then you can only use it on the XBOX. However, as stated on the official Game Pass site, if you upgrade your Live Gold to Ultimate (12.99$ a month- 2022), it works for both platforms.
What is Game Pass?
It is a subscription-based service that gives its user access to the library of games. The games are on a rotation basis, meaning that some go and new arrive in their place.
That’s pretty much it, at least according to the official website. For us PC users, it´s an app that gives you access to a library of games worth more than 6300$ according to TheLoadout in 2021.
What are the pros of having a Game Pass?
Let’s start simple – Game Pass spares your wallet. I won’t be the first to say that you can save hundreds of euros by getting access to Game Pass. Just talking about indie games, I can say that browsing Steam I found plenty of indies that had a unique concept, but what stopped me each time was that lingering idea that I would be wasting my money on something that I might not even like.
With my Game Pass, I was able to try lots of games: some were nice, some weren’t, but what’s important is that I had no feeling that my money was wasted.
Moreover, AAA games are on the menu as well – as an example, Deathloop was on my wish list for a long time, but due to a rocky start, I decided to wait up a little, and a couple of months later, there it was: an updated and freely available on Game Pass. The biggest game studios on the PC market are present; from Bethesda to EA you have a large quantity of AAA projects to choose from.
The final thing worth mentioning is that at the beginning of 2022, Xbox Game Pass finally unlocked the files for everyone to mod to their heart’s content! It is a big step because before that, it was my only gripe with the service, now with files unlocked, you can grab any game and mod it. Just what the doctor ordered.
What are the Cons of Game Pass?
While not mentioned by a majority of articles, some issues plague Game Pass.
Starting with DLCs: A rare thing in the past, but now almost every game has a number of them, and games on Game Pass usually have none. While not a problem for games like Doom Eternal that already have a solid base game and DLC adds extra content, to others like Heart of Iron 4, Stellaris, and Fallout 4, it is a huge issue.
So if you find a game on Game Pass, they mostly come without your beloved DLC.
Paradox Interactive games, for example, are known to lack interesting features without DLC, and if you are enticed to buy it for your Game Pass game, remember, when Game Pass removes that game from the library, you will have DLCs without a game. And you cannot transfer them to Steam. Some games, however, come packaged with DLCs, but Game Pass doesn’t assist with figuring that out.
Next up is the issue of competition. I can confidently say that Game Pass has none. Which shows the quality of Microsoft products but in terms of business, this is a dangerous prospect for us consumers. The competition drives improvements and keeps the price at bay, but with none present, it means it’s up to the Xbox monopoly to state the price and the quality of service.
Of course, I don’t mean that Microsoft will sabotage its foster child for greed in a year or so, but there were already reports that Microsoft was planning a price increase this year. Yet, with rumors in the air, we can surely bet that this will change.
Third and last is the issue of the app itself. While it underwent a number of UI changes, it still missed many things such as Community Tab, better-organized review section, and the shop itself.
Steam was in the market for much longer, so it’s no surprise that it is ahead of Game Pass; however, it is sad that since its launch, the app has not seen a major overhaul. More than that, there are bugs. Some games don’t start on Windows 11, and errors have no description, so you have to Google them online, and it all doesn’t make for a better user experience.
Future of Game Pass
Last year on the 20th Anniversary of the Xbox console launch, Phil Spencer mentioned that: “Game Pass is very, very sustainable right now as it sits and continues to grow.”
As of moment Game Pass is fully profitable, which does mean that Microsoft will continue investing in it. For me, that sounds great. I´m happy with what Xbox Game Pass has to offer and have some minor gripes, as you saw just before.