Thursday, October 25th 2018

Nadella Announces Xbox Game Pass, 'Microsoft's Netflix of Video Games', Is Coming to PC

Microsoft launched Xbox Game Pass in June 2017. This video game subscription service allows users to install and play Xbox games (not just Xbox One ones, there are titles from the Xbox 360 and even the original Xbox) , with over 230 games currently available, a number that is constantly growing. Often called 'The Netflix of video games', the service has been improving its offering, but now the project will go beyond it's initial focus. Satya Nadella, Microsoft CEO, announced during an investor meeting that Xbox Game Pass will come to PCs soon.

Nadella gave no further details, so we still don't know what games will be included on that service or the subscription price (currently $9.99/month), but the announcement is promising and another sign that the company is moving forward to expand their reach and, of course, their earnings. On the latest earnings release (FY19 Q1) Microsoft pointed out how gaming revenue "increased 44% with Xbox software and services revenue growth of 36% mainly from third-party title strength". This move could make that growth go even higher, and it joins other recent announcements that could improve Microsoft's role in this market.
Lately we've seen at least two smart moves from Redmond. The first one, the mouse and keyboard support for the Xbox One. This feature will arrive soon and will allow players to take advantage of these peripherals though there are critical voices that warn about an unfair situation for 'classic' gamers. The second, Microsoft effort to gave users an optional cross-play experience. The Play Anywhere titles allow Windows 10 PC and Xbox One players to enjoy online matches together amongst other things. Initiatives such the one led by Fornite's global cross-play (even Sony had to surrender) make the future look really interesting: players will play with (or against) other players on different platforms, with developers hopefully adjusting matchmaking to avoid unfair matches unless the players explicitly choose to go that way.

Xbox Game Pass won't be the only option on the market: Origin Access is an existing alternative that includes over 50 Electronic Arts games (there's an Xbox One version called EA Access), but we have also the elephant in the room: Steam, which doesn't have a subscription model and according to some people, won't ever have. Microsoft has some advantages on his strategy, but the problem for Microsoft could be not what they have on their game catalog, but precisely what they don't have. We'll have to wait and see if that version of Xbox Game Pass -the name should change, we guess- goes beyond what its current console service has gone, but the idea seems at least promising. Source: GameInformer
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28 Comments on Nadella Announces Xbox Game Pass, 'Microsoft's Netflix of Video Games', Is Coming to PC

#1
sepheronx
I think i'll give this a............ pass

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#2
lynx29
The problem here is competition. For it to truly be Netflix of games, all publishers would need to unite and have one flat fee a month, say $29.99 per month, and it basically would apply to any game for any company, and whichever games get downloaded most, get a certain percentage, I think that is how Netflix sort of works, if your show doesn't get watched, you lose out on extra revenues. This will never happen. So we will be stuck with ten different game passes, Origin already has two... a premier and normal... and consumers just don't want to deal with that sort of convoluted non-sense.

Hard pass.
Posted on Reply
#3
theoneandonlymrk
lynx29, post: 3929481, member: 153071"
The problem here is competition. For it to truly be Netflix of games, all publishers would need to unite and have one flat fee a month, say $29.99 per month, and it basically would apply to any game for any company, and whichever games get downloaded most, get a certain percentage, I think that is how Netflix sort of works, if your show doesn't get watched, you lose out on extra revenues. This will never happen. So we will be stuck with ten different game passes, Origin already has two... a premier and normal... and consumers just don't want to deal with that sort of convoluted non-sense.

Hard pass.
Yeah but that is not how it works , Netflix buy and make shows so do amazon ,sky and others ,so the bit where devs and producers unite didn't happen and each has shows no other has , so same again , tut.
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#4
lynx29
theoneandonlymrk, post: 3929488, member: 82332"
Yeah but that is not how it works , Netflix buy and make shows so do amazon ,sky and others ,so the bit where devs and producers unite didn't happen and each has shows no other has , so same again , tut.
Good point, Netflix is very dominant and unifying though in the industry, generally speaking, CBS, NBC, ABC, National Geo, lot of major shows come in under the umbrella of Netflix, simply because Netflix is the key provider for it all. If people had to sub to each company, it probably would have all failed.
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#5
theoneandonlymrk
lynx29, post: 3929513, member: 153071"
Good point, Netflix is very dominant and unifying though in the industry, generally speaking, CBS, NBC, ABC, National Geo, lot of major shows come in under the umbrella of Netflix, simply because Netflix is the key provider for it all. If people had to sub to each company, it probably would have all failed.
Well there is the opinion they did right here , marvel and Disney will be behind a separate paywall too soon.
In the Uk every man would argue it's rubbish since they have all completely ruined football by never showing a whole competition on a channel despite them all paying for there bit, it's total garbage.
Any providor of entertainment you pick cannot show you all of whqt you want here.
And they're just doing the same to games imho.
Im not into it.
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#6
lemkeant
lynx29, post: 3929513, member: 153071"
Good point, Netflix is very dominant and unifying though in the industry, generally speaking, CBS, NBC, ABC, National Geo, lot of major shows come in under the umbrella of Netflix, simply because Netflix is the key provider for it all. If people had to sub to each company, it probably would have all failed.
Get ready because it's possibly on it way to happening. With Disney going solo and pulling Disney and Marvel stuff from Netflix, as well as Fox already pulling all of their content, these services/studios need to rely on original content.

Thats whats interesting about game pass. MS buying all of these independent studios, they're loading up on their content to be able to deliver a lot of good games (if these good games ever show up) without worry about others breaking off and going solo.

I'm interested in game pass. Especially if they do a PC/Xbox combo price. However, I'll be curious what the PC version will bring?
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#7
king of swag187
Games that are cross platfrom (Sea of thieves is one) already work through xbox game pass funnily enough. I have a XB1X with game pass and all games that I get through game pass that are PC compatible can be downloaded
Posted on Reply
#8
lynx29
lemkeant, post: 3929550, member: 157223"
Get ready because it's possibly on it way to happening. With Disney going solo and pulling Disney and Marvel stuff from Netflix, as well as Fox already pulling all of their content, these services/studios need to rely on original content.

Thats whats interesting about game pass. MS buying all of these independent studios, they're loading up on their content to be able to deliver a lot of good games (if these good games ever show up) without worry about others breaking off and going solo.

I'm interested in game pass. Especially if they do a PC/Xbox combo price. However, I'll be curious what the PC version will bring?
and they will soon find out they will lose money by doing that, because majority of people will stay with netflix anyway. thats why netflix original content has been invested in so heavily / won over large crowds = Netflix is a titan, i will be very impressed if "Fox Nation" streaming service makes them more money than just making deals with netflix, lol
Posted on Reply
#9
Vayra86
I really wonder if this cloud gaming BS will ever take off. Not very confident that it will.

lynx29, post: 3929564, member: 153071"
and they will soon find out they will lose money by doing that, because majority of people will stay with netflix anyway. thats why netflix original content has been invested in so heavily / won over large crowds = Netflix is a titan, i will be very impressed if "Fox Nation" streaming service makes them more money than just making deals with netflix, lol
I do think there is space for more players than just Netflix. One of those you cannot discount is the national broadcasting that is also moving to premium services for very specific content. In NL, you can get NPO Plus which is there for content with a bit more depth - documentaries and the like. Even in terms of price, Netflix is rather cheap and there is definitely 'space' for one or two more of those services, if that would mean I could completely toss out cable TV.

So even something like Fox can do its own bit of content and still make lucrative Netflix deals on other stuff. The problem is making that switch, because you can't just cut out all the regular broadcasting from one day to the other, and doing it gradually keeps the content available in multiple places. So what we get is ever more advertising on cable, everything to annoy the shit out of you while you're watching it.

When it comes to content providers, honestly, these problems will never cease until everyone can bring their own content under a single, independent storefront where each publisher is a shareholder. Thát would be a vehicle that would work for on-demand gaming too, and it create a completely different world where the only thing that matters is quality of content, instead of forced exclusives and uninteresting paywalled services.
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#10
TheGuruStud
So they want you to play a laggy youtube? What is this? They let you play shoddy ports that I never played to begin with?

Nah, I'm good.
Posted on Reply
#11
WikiFM
I think it is a great idea, but it will take some years to take off like in Netflix, nowadays most people don't have cable anymore, they pay Netflix instead, but this was not the case at launch.

Netflix started with 2 o 3 series and a catalog of third-party content. Nowadays they have been retiring very slowly most of the third-party content, since now then have a huge in-house catalog.

This is what is need to be done in PC, start with a good third-party catalog of games and after some years push Microsoft games until they are more than the others, all that from a business point of view (some consumers will always want to play games from other publishers).
Posted on Reply
#12
Frick
Fishfaced Nincompoop
Vayra86, post: 3929566, member: 152404"
I really wonder if this cloud gaming BS will ever take off. Not very confident that it will.
I honestly think there's a market for it. We stream everything else, why not games? Provided it works for the game, it probably won't work for twitch shooters and whatever, but like Assassins Creed and your Bethsoft games and GT Autos and whatever? Sure.
Posted on Reply
#13
bug
lynx29, post: 3929481, member: 153071"
The problem here is competition. For it to truly be Netflix of games, all publishers would need to unite and have one flat fee a month, say $29.99 per month, and it basically would apply to any game for any company, and whichever games get downloaded most, get a certain percentage, I think that is how Netflix sort of works, if your show doesn't get watched, you lose out on extra revenues. This will never happen. So we will be stuck with ten different game passes, Origin already has two... a premier and normal... and consumers just don't want to deal with that sort of convoluted non-sense.

Hard pass.
Netflix itself is being bastardized by publishers as they wish. Many movies have been available on Netflix over time that are now nowhere to be found. Publishers work on their own streaming services and when they launch those, they'll pull their stuff from Netflix just to increase revenue.
$10 a month for this might be a good deal. I mean, even if you don't play anything, it's like you've bought two games a year that you didn't like. And you're bound to do better than that with so many titles available.
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#14
lynx29
bug, post: 3929658, member: 157434"
Netflix itself is being bastardized by publishers as they wish. Many movies have been available on Netflix over time that are now nowhere to be found. Publishers work on their own streaming services and when they launch those, they'll pull their stuff from Netflix just to increase revenue.
$10 a month for this might be a good deal. I mean, even if you don't play anything, it's like you've bought two games a year that you didn't like. And you're bound to do better than that with so many titles available.
The average consumer just won't bother with it imo, but time will tell. FOX Nation launches Nov 27th. lets see how long it lasts. ten bucks says im quoting this post in 6 months saying Fox nation is closing down due to low subs lol
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#15
lexluthermiester
lynx29, post: 3929481, member: 153071"
and consumers just don't want to deal with that sort of convoluted non-sense.
Exactly. Joining in with the people who are in the side of saying "pass" or in other words, no thank you Microsoft.
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#16
StrayKAT
TheGuruStud, post: 3929584, member: 42692"
So they want you to play a laggy youtube? What is this? They let you play shoddy ports that I never played to begin with?

Nah, I'm good.
Microsoft are the least guilty of shoddy ports. I mean, Forza is one of the rare games that I can run on a Vega @4K with good framerates. There are games from others devs from 2011 that can't even do that.

edit: For the record, I'm totally against any kind of "streaming" of games. But a pass is cool, I guess. Not my thing, but maybe it holds some value.
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#17
TheOne
I figured they would bring their streaming platform to PC when they didn't announce a Halo port at E3, I'm also not surprised their merging it with Game Pass.
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#18
bug
lynx29, post: 3929666, member: 153071"
The average consumer just won't bother with it imo, but time will tell. FOX Nation launches Nov 27th. lets see how long it lasts. ten bucks says im quoting this post in 6 months saying Fox nation is closing down due to low subs lol
Not sure which "it" you're referring to. If you're talking about publishers' own broadcast service, I don't think they'll take off either. Still, the worse they do, the more the publishers will pull from Netflix trying to keep them afloat. And if you're talking about Microsoft's subscription, I'm not into consoles or their app store, so i really wouldn't know.
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#19
enxo218
then they just turn off the service one day and you've been had because you would have only paid for access to experience the game and not for the actual game itself...so no thanks
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#20
bug
enxo218, post: 3929878, member: 175695"
then they just turn off the service one day and you've been had because you would have only paid for access to experience the game and not for the actual game itself...so no thanks
That problem has been solved for years. How many games you (think you) own can still run if you loose Internet connectivity or their servers go offline?
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#21
Vayra86
bug, post: 3929881, member: 157434"
That problem has been solved for years. How many games you (think you) own can still run if you loose Internet connectivity or their servers go offline?
Every GOG title and about 3/4th of my Steam library. And the list of offline games isnt dwindling either. Rather, old stuff gets remastered... as a new offline, single player experience.

In fact you could say that streaming is specifically more suited to single player games because they lack competitive requirements. Ironically...
Posted on Reply
#22
bug
Vayra86, post: 3929887, member: 152404"
Every GOG title and about 3/4th of my Steam library. And the list of offline games isnt dwindling either. Rather, old stuff gets remastered... as a new offline, single player experience.

In fact you could say that streaming is specifically more suited to single player games because they lack competitive requirements. Ironically...
You've described my game collection rather well ;)
Still, new titles (and especially AAA titles) aren't like that.
Posted on Reply
#23
lexluthermiester
bug, post: 3929881, member: 157434"
That problem has been solved for years. How many games you (think you) own can still run if you loose Internet connectivity or their servers go offline?
And that's why you don't pay for them.
Posted on Reply
#24
bug
lexluthermiester, post: 3930003, member: 134537"
And that's why you don't pay for them.
There's enough people that do, though.
Posted on Reply
#25
lexluthermiester
bug, post: 3930006, member: 157434"
There's enough people that do, though.
But that's my point. If we, as a gaming public, stopped paying for such lame-duck business models publishers would have no choice but to go back to a business model that better serves the interests and rights of the end user.
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