When Game Pass becomes popular, it’s usually because it records a great game or because some influencers invented a viral “joke”. That essentially gives a $2 trillion corporation two days of free promotion. However, Microsoft’s games-on-demand offering has recently become popular for another reason: players are canceling their subscriptions. For now Xbox Game Pass burnout.
Subscribers complaining that Game Pass isn’t delivering on its value proposition are largely to blame for the burnout. Xbox game Pass gives you access to a Netflix-style library of games. That you can download to your Xbox or PC for a monthly price. Or, in some cases, stream to a compatible device. The key selling point, though, is that every first-party Microsoft game will included in the library from launch. Giving customers free access to Microsoft’s acclaimed first-party titles like Halo Infinite and Forza Horizon 5.
Bethesda is now legally one of Xbox’s first-party studios after a market purchase in 2021. Postponed two of its most anticipated titles earlier this month. The space RPG Starfield and the vampire shooter Redfall (developed by Bethesda subsidiary Arkane). Both were supposed to available on Game Pass from the start of this year. They’ll now release in the first half of 2023. Leaving Microsoft’s first-party portfolio in significantly worse shape than it was a month ago.
It’s time to do some basic math. Assume you’ve purchased the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate tier. Which costs $15 a month and offers regular access to the game library. As well as a number of other benefits. Let’s also suppose that any big-budget games. That come the service. Whether exclusive or not will cost $60. To justify the expense of Game Pass. You’d have to play one full-price game every four months.
To some level, a decline in interest was unavoidable. For the past couple of years. Xbox has been riding a tsunami of goodwill generated by Game Pass. Which has consistently made some of the largest AAA titles available on its service. Not only exclusives but also multiplatform hits like Guardians of the Galaxy. These are in addition to a steady stream of lesser games. That reap the benefits of Game Pass’s marketing boost.
Because of this mix of big and small, old and new. Xbox Game Pass Burnout subscriptions skyrocketed in 2020. However, the service will very certainly improve once more. Xbox will have its non-E3 news conference next month. Xbox unveiled more than Twenty videogames for Game Pass during its 2021 event.