Update: Game Pass for PC is now officially confirmed to cost $9.99 a month standalone, or $14.99 as part of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. The $4.99 price initially reported is just an introductory rate available while Game Pass on PC is in a beta state. Those who subscriber to Game Pass on PC for $4.99 will receive a 30-day notice before the price officially changes to $9.99.
Xbox Game Pass has arrived on PC, with Microsoft launching the subscription service early Sunday alongside the new Xbox PC app. Unfortunately, both Game Pass and App seem to have soft-launched a bit earlier than expected, as they're not easily accessible just yet. They are both live, however, and so PC gamers can check out the first official details about PC Game Pass including price and the subscription service's initial line-up of over 100 games.
Pricing will be a big point of interest for potential Xbox Game Pass subscribers on PC. After all, the market for free games and subscription services on PC is much more competitive. There's the Humble Monthly Bundle that always offers a lot of value, Electronic Arts' Origin Access subscription, PlayStation Now, and Google Stadia on the horizon. But Xbox is clearly in the mood to undercut the competition. The PC Game Pass subscription will cost just $4.99 a month.
At $4.99 month, it may seem like there has to be a catch. But if there is one it's not immediately apparent. Game Pass on PC offers over 100 games and will continue the Xbox Game Pass tradition of featuring Xbox Game Studios exclusives, including Halo: The Master Chief Collection, Ori and the Will of the Wisps, and Gears 5. Leaked Xbox PC app screenshots showed each of those games under Game Pass with a "Coming Soon" label.
Xbox exclusives aren't all that's offered through Game Pass. There are a lot of great third-party games including:
- Football Manager 2019
- Hollow Knight
- Imperator: Rome
- Into the Breach
- Metro: Exodus
- Shenmue 1 & 2
- Slay the Spire
- Surviving Mars
- Titan Quest Anniversary Edition
And that's not even 10 of the over 100 games included with the subscription. Most of the games, however, are either Xbox first-party titles or games already available via standard Xbox Game Pass as part of the Play Anywhere program.
Before PC gamers rush out to subscribe to PC Game Pass, it might be worth holding off until Microsoft officially announces its plans tonight during the Xbox E3 2019 press briefing or even some time later. The Xbox PC app has only just launched with the newest version of Windows, which also only went live today and has a rolling launch. So before subscribing, make sure that Windows 10 has updated to version 1903, that you've downloaded the Xbox PC app, and that all of the Game Pass PC games are unlocked. There's no harm in waiting.
One final bit of interesting Game Pass news is that Xbox launching and improving the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription. Previously announced to include both a Game Pass and Xbox Live Gold subscription in one for $15 a month, it seems that Game Pass Ultimate now includes Game Pass for both Xbox and PC. For Xbox gamers who use both platforms and play Xbox One online often, there's no better deal.
Stay tuned for more information about Xbox on PC, Game Pass, and more during tonight's Xbox E3 2019 press conference starting at 1:00 pm PT.