As we navigate the ever-evolving landscape of gaming, Microsoft has recently unveiled a significant change in its subscription services. The tech giant is phasing out Xbox Live Gold, replacing it with a new offering called Xbox Game Pass Core. This move marks a significant shift in Microsoft’s strategy, aiming to provide a more streamlined and value-packed experience for gamers.
Xbox Game Pass Core, set to launch on September 14, 2023, is a new subscription service that will cost $10 per month or $60 per year. It will offer access to a curated collection of over 25 games for Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One. The initial lineup includes popular titles like Gears 5, Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice, Grounded, Halo 5, Inside, and Elder Scrolls Online. Microsoft plans to refresh this catalog by adding new titles 2-3 times per year.
This new service is not just about games. It also includes access to online multiplayer on console and various deals and discounts. However, it’s worth noting that it does not grant access to the full Game Pass library, including day-one releases like Starfield.
The introduction of Xbox Game Pass Core comes on the heels of Microsoft’s decision to discontinue the Games with Gold program on September 1, 2023. This program, which has been a staple for Xbox Live Gold members for a decade, offered free games every month. While Xbox 360 titles redeemed through Games with Gold will remain in users’ libraries, Xbox One titles will require an active subscription to Xbox Game Pass Core or Game Pass Ultimate.
Microsoft’s decision to replace Xbox Live Gold with Xbox Game Pass Core is a strategic move to leverage the strength of its Game Pass catalog. It’s a clear indication of the company’s commitment to providing a compelling and value-driven gaming experience. However, it’s important to note that this change could lead to some confusion around the online multiplayer aspects of Game Pass. While Core includes multiplayer, the regular Xbox Game Pass does not. For that, you still need Xbox Game Pass Ultimate.
The gaming landscape is changing, and Microsoft is leading the charge with its new Xbox Game Pass Core. This new service promises to provide a more streamlined and value-packed experience for gamers, replacing the long-standing Xbox Live Gold. As we move forward, it will be interesting to see how this shift impacts the gaming community and whether other companies will follow suit.