Microsoft has changed its course with this latest generation of video game consoles. It’s exciting times for Microsoft right now with their Xbox umbrella expanding. We’ve seen the company make some moves to expand its first-party lineup and with it came one of the biggest deals in the industry right now. Recently, Microsoft purchased ZeniMax Media which came with a slew of first-party studios. Among the mix is the incredibly successful and beloved Bethesda team.
However, there is a bigger move outside of just expanding their first-party studio lineup and that’s getting the Xbox brand out to as many people as possible. One of the more mainstream ways Microsoft is looking to accomplish that is through Game Pass. This is a subscription service that allows players access to not only every first-party studio title launch for subscribers but also a slew of third-party studio titles as well. With Game Pass, players can play the latest Xbox games the day they launch into the marketplace.
Knowing that there is a heavily stacked first-party lineup should help sway some players into picking up the service. This is also paired with their cloud gaming which just recently rolled out to all Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers. Now all you need is a stable internet connection to enjoy these games rather than an actual Xbox console. With this new service getting traction, there’s some wondering if we would see any kind of a change to the Xbox Live Gold service.
Microsoft doesn’t require players to have Xbox Live Gold to play free-to-play multiplayer games. However, it’s still a requirement to play online multiplayer games for premium titles. Reports are circulating thanks to Jeff Grub from Giant Bomb, that Microsoft is interested in dropping Xbox Live Gold. This is a move that Jeff’s uncertain on when Microsoft will make it happen, but he is certain that it will happen if Xbox’s Game Pass subscriber base hits a bigger milestone. As mentioned, with cloud gaming being attached to the Game Pass service, there’s a good chance we may see that milestone hit if Microsoft can ensure latency is not an issue. This would be a big deal especially with the line of games coming out like Halo Infinite and Starfield.