Console Corner: Xbox launches game changer

Game Pass is changing and it could shake video gaming to its core
Game Pass is changing and it could shake video gaming to its core

Xbox has launched a real game changer in the race to try and topple Sony’s PS4 dominance... quite literally.

In a move which promises to shake up the way games are accessed and sold, Microsoft is launching a Game Pass subscription service which offers brand new games the day they are released.

What’s new, you can already do that on PlayStation I hear (some of) you cry?

Yes you can but you have to pay for the full game as you would if you were buying it in Tesco or Game (other retailers are available).

No this is a potential game changer because currently a Game Pass on Xbox costs £7.99 per month and gives you access to over 100 games for you to download and play whenever you like, similar to EA Access.

While some of the games on there are relatively new the majority are older releases.

Now, though, brand new titles such as Forza Motorsport 7 will be added to the service and forthcoming games like Sea Of Thieves and Crackdown 3 promised for day one.

The move has been described in the industry as Microsoft’s attempt to become the Netflix of gaming, which I’m going to steal and repeat because it just about sums it up perfectly.

Microsoft endured a torrid 2017 during which it published very few of its own games and was essentially dominated by Sony’s PS4 doing its best impersonation of being video gaming’s answer to Manchester City.

The change was announced in a blog post by Xbox boss Phil Spencer where he confirmed that Sea Of Thieves on March 20 would be the first game to be added as part of the shake-up.

Unlike Netflix, the Game Pass itself is not a streaming service so you will still have to download the games to play them. But that has been put solely down to the current limitations of broadband infrastructure.

Sony has blocked EA Access on PS4 so this move is sure to make things very interesting indeed.