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Xbox Game Pass subscribers say they are unsubscribing for now

Master Chief, Kate Diax, Fast Ferrari and other popular Xbox characters are behind next-gen Xbox consoles.

picture: Microsoft

When Game Pass is trending, it’s usually either because it scored a killer game, or Some influencers have come up with a viral “joke”. all that brings is giving a $2 trillion corporation two days of free marketing. In recent days, however, Microsoft’s games-on-demand program has started trending for another reason: gamers are saying they’re unsubscribing. For now.

The burnout is largely due to subscribers saying Game Pass isn’t delivering on its value proposition. For a monthly fee, game pass gives you access to a Netflix-style library of games that you can download (or, in some cases, stream to a compatible device) on your Xbox or PC. But the big selling point is this: every first-party Microsoft game comes into the library at launch, which means subscribers get access to Microsoft’s prestigious first-party releases, such as: Halo infinity or ForzaHorizon 5.

Earlier this month, Bethesda — now officially one of Xbox’s first-party studios after an industry-shattering acquisition in 2021 —delayed his two biggest upcoming games: Space RPG starfield and vampire shooter redfall (developed by Bethesda subsidiary Arkane). Both should be coming to Game Pass on day one this year. Now they won’t come out until the first half of 2023, leaving Microsoft’s first-party portfolio looks much drier than a month ago.

All right, time for some reductive math! Let’s say you’ve signed up for the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate tier, which costs $15 a month and includes standard access to the game library, along with a bunch of other perks. Let’s also assume all big budget games, exclusive or notthat reached the service cost an industry standard $60. After that math, you would have to play one Full-price games through Game Pass every four months to justify costs.

A helmet sits on a shelf in Starfield, an Xbox game that won't be released until 2023.

The tape on a starfield Helmet is temporary.
screenshot: bethesda

“The service is great but there are no exclusive AAA offers that would compel me to stay.” Tom’s guide Writer Tony Polanco said in a tweet. “I’ll be back when the titles fall.” Washington Post Reporter Gene Park divided a similar sentiment, pointing out that in the last few months the only game off the service he’s engaged is Hike to Yomi, a side-scrolling samurai action game. (Hike to Yomi costs $20. Also, side note: It rules.) Other prominent members of the gaming connoisseurs complains Pay upfront for months if not years of Game Pass while others compared it unfavorably versus the upcoming PS Plus revamp, Sony’s competing subscription service. (Sony’s widely acclaimed first-party games does not start on PS Plus.)

on the downside, there is no shortage of people Calling it a “strike war” or saying “no one cares.”

It’s unclear if the expanded convo had a noticeable impact on Game Pass subscription counts. Microsoft does not release such numbers, and company officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

A drop in interest was, to some extent, inevitable. In recent years, Xbox has been riding a tidal wave of goodwill generated by Game Pass, which has consistently spawned some of the biggest AAA games – not just exclusives, but multiplatform hits like Guardians of the Galaxy—available on his service. These come alongside a regular stream of smaller titles, which benefit from the marketing boost that comes from appearing on Game Pass. Part of the joy of subscribing is that you never know what you’re going to get; You could try an understated indie and bounce off it in minutes, or it could quickly become one of your favorites of the year. (All, Regards tunic.)

Continue reading: The 24 best games in Xbox Game Pass

This mix of big and small, old and new has resulted in Game Pass subscriptions soaring in 2020. They have also increased over the past year (albeit more slowly than 2020). an absolutely badass series of fall and winter lineups. There was no way Microsoft could have kept up this rhythm forever; Almost six months into 2022, despite adding occasional gems, Game Pass has yet to feature an “OMG, take my money!!!” List of upcoming games.

However, the service will almost certainly improve again. Next month Xbox will host its non-E3 press conference. While its 2021 conference, Xbox announced more than 20 games planned for Game Pass. Some of these have already come out. But plenty – of the limbo-how Somerville to the Stand out-how Atomic Heart to the Outer Worlds-how Outer Worlds 2– have yet to receive release dates.

Correction 5/24 9:15am ET: A previous version of this post miscalculated the number of times you would need to play full price games to “justify” the price of a Game Pass subscription.

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