Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass subscription is almost as close to “Netflix for games” as you can get. And youLike Netflix, there are ways to get the best money. Here are some tips to help you get the most out of a Game Pass subscription.
Consider posing for Ultimate.
Like many other media subscriptions, Game Pass is available in multiple levels. The default level is $ 10 per month, which gives you access to the Game Pass library and not much else. The computer version – which has its own library with many overlapping games, but some exclusive, such as Crusader Kings III—It’s also $ 10, but it costs $ 5 when it was in beta earlier this year.
For $ 15 a month, you can get Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which gives you access to both the console and PC Game Pass libraries. You can also sign up for Xbox Live Gold, Microsoft’s online service, which offers four additional games per month via the Games With Gold program. Ultimate members can also stream games directly to Android devices (and, next year, iOS devices too). Starting in November, Ultimate joins EA Play, a game-on-demand service full of EA video games and sports ads. Game Pass Ultimate also starts expanding first parties at no extra cost, a benefit not available to standard level members.
It is clear that Microsoft wants to lead subscribers to the higher price point. In anticipation of a serious rise in the sticker price, the math is working to justify the jump – in most cases. Switching from the base level to Ultimate is worth it if …
- You plan to pay the full price for three Xbox games with tent pole within a calendar year.
- You plan to record both the console and PC Game Pass subscriptions.
- You plan to sign up for at least two of the following: Game Pass, Xbox Live Gold or EA Play.
The monthly price of $ 15 can be daunting, especially in an era of subscriber subscription, but there are a few ways to ease the cost. To begin with, your first three months currently costs only a dollar (total), but as soon as it expires, Microsoft automatically charges your card at a higher monthly rate. Cancel play pass will not delete your storage data for any games you have played with the service. You can pick up any game exactly where you left off by purchasing the game physically or digitally, or re-signing up for Game Pass.
Digital retailers sometimes offer Ultimate three-month or one-year cards that are less than the total cost. You can also convert codes for Microsoft’s other subscriptions into Ultimate months, provided you are already an Ultimate member, which may reduce costs a bit. Suppose you put a code on Xbox Live Gold for a year. You can use it for four months Game Pass Ultimate. (Here is a complete list exactly how many months’ Ultimate your codes will work with.)
Lastly, consider finding a friend who can play your computer – one you trust – and share the costs. Right now, the PC player is getting the short end of the stick, as EA Play is not currently folded in the PC library. (It will happen some time next year.) Sure, you and your friend can hammer a fair split, and you can play both games at the same time with the same account, as long as you are not trying to play, say, Halo multiplayer.
Sure, play the hits …
The main attraction of Game Pass is that you can play great games without tackling GameStop or handing over more money to the Bezos empire. First party games, such as Rat 5 and The outer worlds, land on service day one. Next year’s planning Halo Infinite will also. Game Pass is the way to play it if you want to play all the biggest Xbox games during the launch without handing out $ 60 per doll. Great third party games – like Control, Deus Ex: Mankind Divides, en Tales of Vesperia—Bicycle in and out of the library all the time.
Many of Microsoft’s first-party games are optimized for the Xbox Series X and S, enabling faster loading speeds, higher frames, and sharper resolutions. And those with compatible screens can use 120fps modes for Ori and the Will of the Wisps, Rat 5, en Halo: The Master Chief Collection. Game Pass is a good excuse to play old games again, or to watch them for the first time.
… but do not sleep on the indie gems.
Just as good as Game Pass for accessing great games, it’s even better to discover smaller ones. For each Force or Halo or a third party, there’s a gem under the radar that you would not otherwise look at twice. The following dozen, if you missed it, are at least worth checking out:
Most of the best games on Game Pass are relatively small – a handful of gigabytes, at most and usually less than 1 GB – so that even those with tight data capital can download them with little effect. If you just skip the surface and play the biggest hits, you will miss a lot of great games.
Filter the libraries.
Since there are hundreds of games in the library, it can be tedious to browse alphabetically. But you can limit it with some useful filters. All you have to do is access Game Pass via ‘My Games and Applications’ instead of the standard Game Pass dashboard icon. If you browse to ‘full library’ in ‘My games and applications’, you should see two tiles: one for Xbox Game Pass and one for EA Play. If you see the library through this, you may have robust categorization options not available in the standard Game Pass console app. However, you should view the EA Play and Game Pass libraries separately, instead of the full range you will find in the Game Pass app.
On the top row, you should see an icon that looks like an inverted science class funnel in high school. By clicking on it, you can filter by genre (platform, shooter, role-playing game, etc.), by console (Xbox and Xbox 360 games, Xbox One games or next generation “optimized” games) and multiplayer capabilities (online or local, cooperative or competitive). If you just want to use Game Pass to look at all the games that have been revamped with next-generation upgrades, you can do just that. If you prefer to see what puzzle games local collaboration offers, you can do so too.
In some cases, Game Pass allows you to download upcoming high-profile games. For example, at the moment you can pre-install The medium. Following a delay, The upcoming multidimensional nightmare of Bloober Team will only end up on Game Pass on January 28, 2021, but you can now eliminate the 38GB download.
Get some rechargeable AA batteries.
Xbox Administrators still use AA batteries, so it’s never a bad idea.