For the past few years, Xbox has remained pretty consistent with its subscription offerings. You have Game Pass, which offers Day 1 access to all first-party, and some third-party, games for a simple $10 per month (or $15 if you get Game Pass Ultimate) fee and you have Xbox Live Gold for those who just want to play online. It’s an approach that’s appealing in its simplicity, but it seems Microsoft may be looking experiment with the subscriptions they offer.
According to a post on ResetEra, some Xbox users have recently received a survey that proposes a new subscription offering. This subscription would only set you back 3 dollars/euros per month, but would be ad-supported, with commercials playing before you start up games. You also wouldn’t get first-party games on Day 1, but rather six months after launch. On the other hand, this service would offer access to online multiplayer similar to Xbox Live Gold.
Some have described this subscription as an “Xbox Game Pass Lite,” but I’m not sure if that’s quite accurate. The survey also proposes a service similar to the current Game Pass Ultimate, with a large catalog of over 100 titles, Day 1 access, cloud gaming, and EA Play. So, it seems Microsoft is likely planning to keep the current Game Pass model around, but may be planning to replace Xbox Live Gold with this new ad-supported subscription option.
Of course, take all this with a grain of salt of salt for now. That said, Microsoft have recently patented tech that would insert ads into games during downtimes (loading screens ect.) Rumors have also been circulating for years that Microsoft is considering giving Xbox Live Gold the boot, so this replacement makes sense in that context.
What do you think? Would you be willing to put up with ads in your games if it meant you got Xbox-Live-Gold-style online services and a catalog of first-party titles for only 3 bucks a month?