In a recent Xbox Wire post, Phil Spencer announced the Xbox Game Pass, an upcoming game subscription service for the Xbox One. For a monthly price of $9.99 (13.99 CAD), Xbox One owners will get access to a catalogue of over 100 Xbox One and backwards-compatible 360 games, which they can download on to their consoles. Games will not require a persistent internet connection, and will be able to be played offline for thirty days.
In addition to getting free reign of the Game Pass titles, Xbox owners who subscribe to the service will get discounts on any title in the library. A discount of 20% will be given for full games, while add-ons will receive a 10% discount. This means that gamers who choose to discontinue the service will be able to purchase any titles they enjoyed for lower than full price, without an Xbox Live Gold membership. Games Pass will be fully available to those even without Xbox Live Gold, but a Gold membership will still be required for multiplayer gaming.
Xbox Game Pass will include a variety of AAA and Arcade games, including Halo 5: Guardians, Fable III, Gears of War: Ultimate Edition, and Saints Row IV: Re-Elected. It will launch later this spring on Xbox One consoles, although no exact date has been given yet. Although no Xbox Live Gold account is required for Game Pass, Gold members will get a chance to try it out before it’s released to the general public. Those in the Alpha Preview ring of the Xbox Insider program will get it even earlier, with an early version going out on February 28.
Xbox Insiders who get Games Pass today will not be getting the full experience, but rather a test build of the service. Insiders should not expect a full line-up of games, with around 20 titles being available, the most of which are Arcade games. Full AAA games will begin to be released closer to the program’s launch. Insiders can also expect to run into bugs, feature limitations, and UI changes, along with an English-only user interface. This early release is meant as a test features and look for bugs, with community members providing bug reports to Microsoft. Feedback on features and bugs will be used to improve the service when it launches in full later this spring.
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