Xbox Game Pass: Price Hikes, A New Standard Plan And What You Need To Know

In the competitive world of gaming, Microsoft's Xbox Game Pass has been a popular option for gamers. With a bevy of great titles available for a monthly subscription, gamers have been able to play various games without needing to purchase each one individually. For some subscribers, however, the cost of doing so is going up.

Pricing and plans are about to undertake a change for subscriptions, with some increases going into effect today. Subscribers will need to pay $3 more for Game Pass Ultimate, which is jumping from $16.99 to $19.99 monthly. This top tier offers prized day one releases. Meanwhile, Xbox Core's yearly price will also increase from $59.99 to $74.99. Current subscribers will see the higher pricing around September 12th of 2024. 

Microsoft will also offer a new Xbox Game Pass Standard tier, at $14.99 monthly. This will remove the access to day one releases and Xbox Cloud Gaming, along with less perks overall. 

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PC gamers will also experience an increase for PC Game Pass, from $9.99 to $11.99. The Xbox Game Pass Ultimate does offer access to both Xbox and PC games, but comes at the $19.99 price as mentioned earlier. 

Will it be worth it for owners of both Xbox and PCs? Along with the day one releases, EA Play Membership is also here, along with other discounts. 

With recent acquisitions of large game studios and popular game franchises such as Call of Duty, Microsoft has a lot of gaming content to entice subscribers. With slowing sales overall in the technology world in 2024, these price increases are likely at attempt for Microsoft to financially stay ahead of the curve to offer these services (and to help offset the cost of those studio acquisitions).

While traditionally Microsoft's Game Pass has offered gamers a good value, these price hikes may start to erode the good will it built up with its fans. It will be imperative that Microsoft also increases the value it provides for these higher prices, in the way of stable services and streaming of high-quality games. 

That's especially true when factoring in that Microsoft's Xbox Series X and Series S consoles have not sold as well as their competitors, with Microsoft increasingly leaning on its software side to keep an advantage.