Just when players believed they were safe from the constant threat of price increases, Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer unveiled yet another shocking revelation. During a speech at the Tokyo Game Show this year, Spencer stated that he believes an Xbox Game Pass price hike is “inevitable.”
For Xbox subscribers, let’s try to make sense of this before you start sharpening your pitchforks.Spencer claims that the subscription service has been doing remarkably well, particularly with the release of the eagerly awaited Starfield. It appears that Microsoft is on the right track, especially with Forza Motorsport 2 on the horizon, but Spencer thinks that a price increase for the Game Pass is inevitable.
He underlined that although providing greater value is the main objective, prices will increase due to the present economic challenges. There have been previous instances of this song. Game Pass experienced a little price increase a few months ago. The standard tier subscription fee increased from $9.99 to $10.99, while the Game Pass Ultimate tier jumped from $14.99 to $16.99.
Let’s compare this to what Sony did recently.Direct rival of Game Pass, PlayStation Plus, recently saw a large increase in price. Certain areas, such as Turkey, had an astounding 600% rise. To exacerbate the situation, this month’s free titles for PlayStation Plus Essential were, to put it bluntly, unimpressive. Many subscribers are furious about this and wonder if they’re receiving their money’s worth.
Returning to Microsoft, there have been a number of noteworthy developments that coincide with Spencer’s remarks. The American executive has also hinted at joint ventures with Japanese companies, implying the creation of new Xbox games, some of which are still unidentified.
Japanese game creators are also part of Microsoft Game Studios, and although there are some titles that cannot be announced yet, we are working with Japanese manufacturers to develop new games. The development environment is growing, including first-party and third-party, so I think we can expect more Japanese titles to appear in the future.
Sadly, brand loyalty is gradually disappearing from the gaming world of today. Many players proudly own numerous consoles and have PlayStation Plus and Game Pass subscriptions. Including additional services such as Nintendo SwitchOnline, EA Play, and Ubisoft, you have a subscription cocktail that is getting more and more expensive to keep up with. Gamers may soon have to choose between canceling their subscription and lowering to a lesser tier in order to maintain access to all other services, as price increases are likely to occur.
Prices are rising for everything, including broadband and bread. For corporations such as Microsoft and Sony, the difficulty lies in making sure that the value they provide equals, if not surpasses, the cost.