Microsoft has just announced that they are bringing preview for PC Game Pass to forty new countries.
The forty countries are listed below:
- Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Costa Rica
- El Salvador
- North Macedonia
As explained in the official Xbox blog, the official rollout for these countries is already scheduled for the coming months, but this preview was scheduled for all countries to experience at the same time. This preview is available for select insiders for a limited time special price. Eventually PC Game Pass will be available to 86 total countries.
Microsoft also took the opportunity to remind fans of their upcoming first party games; Minecraft Legends will be coming on April 18, 2023; and Redfall is arriving on May 2, 2023.
As a reminder, the PC Game Pass service allows Game Pass subscribers to download and play games Microsoft has licensed into the Game Pass library. This includes many games that released on Game Pass at the same day that they were launched, such as Hi-Fi Rush.
Microsoft hasn’t been able to bring Game Pass Ultimate to most countries yet, which would enable them to also play these games on the cloud, streaming on many devices, including phones and tablets. The technical requirements for cloud gaming make it still unfeasible for most parts of the world, even if gaming’s biggest markets have already been experiencing cloud gaming for years.
And yet Microsoft is still rolling out PC Game Pass in countries that already have Xbox and/or Steam in an official capacity. The reasons for this are not technological, as much as they are technical. Each country has their own requirements or limitations that Microsoft has to follow so that they can do business there.
The countries being added now are literally found on every corner of the world, from Latin American countries like Guatemala and Bolivia, to European countries like Estonia and Georgia, to Middle Eastern countries like Qatar and Tunisia. Keen observers may have also noted that Ukraine is being added as a market all on its own.
We had most recently reported Microsoft admitting to regulators that Game Pass actually takes away from retail game sales. While gamers and insiders alike have debated its impact, it’s clear that Microsoft is doing good business with it, such that they are expanding it at this very moment.