You're in a dream. In your dream, the president of Xbox is trying to convince you to buy an Xbox One S or an Xbox One X, and you're still on the fence. After going over the same selling points and features you've heard dozens of times in articles and commercials, he finally decides to cut you a special deal. "Okay," he says, rubbing his hands, "what if we let you pay a monthly subscription fee -- something like a Netflix fee -- and then we just give you every first-party Xbox game for free going forward. Every Halo, Forza, Gears of War... All of them. They'll all be included for you to play on launch day for no extra charge. How's that sound?"
Just when you're ready to make the deal, you wake up. Your stomach sinks, and the excitement fades. It was just a dream... Except it wasn't, and what I just described for you is exactly what is about to happen for Xbox Game Pass owners going forward!
There are a few things you need to know about this new initiative. Keep scrolling to see how Microsoft plans to dominate 2018 with an all-in gaming subscription service!
This isn't a gimmick; Microsoft is going all-in. From this point forward, every single first-party Xbox One exclusive is going to be included in your Game Pass subscription. Sea of Thieves is one of the most anticipated launches of the year for Xbox gamers, and that will be the first exclusive included in this new initiative. Microsoft confirmed as much in this morning's release, saying:
"Moving forward, we plan to release all new Xbox One exclusive games from Microsoft Studios into Xbox Game Pass on the same date as their global release. This means that when Sea of Thieves launches on March 20, it will be included in Xbox Game Pass to all members."
As far as we know, this games will stay with you permanently, as long as you have your Game Pass subscription active. Third-party games rotate in and out of the service, but first-party games, as far as we understand, are there to stay.
Sea of Thieves is just the beginning. Microsoft is going for the kill here, and if you hold on to your Game Pass subscription, you're going to get to play every single major Xbox exclusive as soon as it launches for no additional charge. Microsoft also confirmed this in this morning's release, saying:
"This plan to bring new games timed with their global release into Xbox Game Pass not only includes announced titles like Sea of Thieves, State of Decay 2 and Crackdown 3 but future unannounced games from Microsoft Studios including new iterations of our biggest Xbox One exclusive franchises such as Halo, Forza and Gears of War, on the same day they launch."
Subscribe, and you're done! It almost sounds too good to be true. Instead of decided which games you'll want to save up for throughout the year, and figuring out where you'll order from, just dish out for a monthly Xbox Game Pass sub and relax knowing that you're going to get every first-party game downloaded directly to your console as soon as it launches. How sweet is that?!
Don't feel like adding another recurring subscription to your growing list? With Amazon Prime, Netflix, Hulu, Spotify, and the rest, it can be a little overwhelming keeping track of every company slipping money out of your account each month. Paying $9.99 a month for Game Pass sounds incredibly reasonable to us, but if you don't want to do that, Microsoft will offer more options soon. Here's what they had to say:
"As part of today’s library expansion, we are also pleased to announce that we are working closely with our retail partners, such as GameStop, to offer a 6-month Xbox Game Pass subscription card for those fans who look for a variety of ways to purchase and enjoy new games and services. The 6-month Xbox Game Pass subscription card will be available at select retail partners for $59.99 beginning March 20."
Now there's only one question left: Is this expansion enough to finally get you to subscribe to Game Pass? Is it enough to actually convince you to buy an Xbox One? Weigh in on the poll below and let's get a head count!
This seems like a pretty good deal, right? On paper, it's almost too good to be true. For the price of a Netflix subscription, you could have every single new Xbox One exclusive beamed straight to your console on launch day. You'll never miss a major Xbox release again, and who doesn't have $10 to spare on a monthly basis? Cut out coffee for a couple of days and there's your new Halo.
We'll keep you guys up to date as Microsoft tells us more leading up to launch. Sea of Thieves doesn't launch until mid-March, so there's still time for more announcements! Stay tuned.