Following a brief testing period, Microsoft has officially launched Xbox Game Pass for the masses.
The subscription-based service allows users to browse a vast library of games, select as many titles as they want, and download them to play without any limitations. It is similar to how Netflix operates, as well as PlayStation Now from Sony. However, the stark difference is that there is no kind of traditional streaming involved. The games have to be downloaded before playing, which means that those without a stable internet connection will not have to worry about breakage of service.
Xbox Game Pass has launched with a two-week free trial that can be accessed by Xbox Live Gold members. Those without a membership can also check the service but for free but will have to wait until June 1. Once the trial period is over, interested individuals must pay $10 per month to avail the service. There is currently no long-term subscription option available. Do note that the subscription cost of Xbox Game Pass is separate from that of Xbox Live Gold. Interestingly, T-Mobile subscribers will be entitled to a free month of service at some point next month.
Xbox Game Pass starts with a catalog of more than a hundred games, spanning across a variety of different genres. Microsoft has promised that it will keep adding new games with time. While the library of Xbox Game Pass will not be rotated out every month, a “handful” of games will be removed to make way for others. The company has not clarified as to how it will select the titles that need to be replaced.
For a complete list of the games that will be available during the first month, head here. It comprises both Xbox One and Xbox 360 titles, including some major names from recent years.