These days I feel like the Video Game Community are really pushing for Video Games to be available on a subscription service like Xbox Game Pass, or even like Game Pass Ultimate. I thought I would give my opinion on the debate, but with a third point of view.
Xbox Game Pass
This is no doubt a fantastic service, for £7.99 a month get access to a ton of games in an ever growing library. Not only including games from the current generation but from previous generations going back to the original Xbox. On top of that, all first party games are available on Game Pass on the day they are released. Furthermore, you are able to download the game rather than stream them. I’ve had a look at the library and its expansive, there are so many games from every genre.
Think when you open your cupboard to put something on to wear, but you will actually find something that you like!
Now Xbox Live has been around since the original Xbox. But it wasn’t until the Xbox One generation, when each month they were giving games to download for free. From February 2021, you can get up to 5 games to download as part of the Games with Gold scheme with Xbox Live membership. Currently the membership costs £6.99 a month on the Xbox website or you can get it between £35 to £40 from other retailers for a full year service. Xbox Live main purpose is to allow you to play multiplayer games like Call of Duty and Fifa online with other players as well as with friends and family. It is an essential service, if you want to play multiplayer games with other people. Games with Gold, is a nice bonus and definitely adds value for the cost of membership. I personally have made the most of the Games with Gold feature to play some games I don’t think I would have paid for.
The first Laura Croft Tomb Raider game from the reboot trilogy comes to mind. Never played any games from the franchise, but after getting the first one for free from Games with Gold. I went on to purchase the sequel and currently playing the third instalment!
Xbox Game Pass Ultimate
This service is essentially the combination of Game pass and Xbox Live. For £10.99 a month you get all the features from both. While it may be a little bit more expensive than the other two services individually, it is much cheaper than buying them both separately. Again this does provide really good value, in terms of what you are getting for what you are paying. However I must conclude.
Xbox Live, would be the only one for me.
Physical Copies are Still My Present and Future.
As fantastic as it is, to have access to a large library of games at your disposal to download when you want to play them. I still prefer to own my games physically. Call me old fashioned, but I like being able to look at my library of games and be able to hold them and put them up for display.
I’m sure we have all seen photos online of gaming rooms and people sharing their huge library of games. That is something I aspire to have one day when I have a house of my own. On top of that, when you own a game physically, you know that game is yours for life. Its not going anywhere unless you choose to get rid of it. With Game Pass and even Games with Gold, the second you cancel those subscriptions your access to those games are lost. You won’t be able to play those games until you resubscribe. People can say games are getting more expensive, a brand new game in the UK can cost at a minimum £35 these days, more often than not its usually between £45 to £55. So to some, the trade off for not owning the game outright but being able to play it on Game Pass for £7.99 can sound like a better option financially. But we also need to consider, these subscription prices like video game prices will one day increase too.
How Many Games do You Play Each Month?
This along with owning the games physically to keep, is the main two reasons why I am not on the subscription wagon yet. I just don’t play enough games each month to warrant having a large library available to me. I play at maximum, three games a month across three different platforms.
- Nintendo Switch
Across the three, believe my I already have a large catalogue of games to play though. That is with only having the Playstation + subscription. Which I use for playing Fifa and Titanfall 2 online, and like Games with Gold, it offers games to download for free each month. Plus I don’t buy games every month, last year I bought a total of seven games
- Last of Us Part 2
- Ghost of Tsushima
- Crash Bandicoot 4
- Spider-Man Miles Morales
- Demon’s Souls
- Fifa 21
- Ori and The Blind Forest
We are almost in February, and I have barely played Demon’s Souls (which I bought on release) and yet to play Ori and The Blind Forest which I bought in the beginning of December. But atleast I know I have those two games there and I can play them when I do have the time. In fact all of those games I have, because they are physical copies I don’t need to worry about having my console connected to the network in the future. Many years from now, if I ever have grandkids and I want to show them God of War on PS4. I know all I will have to do, is turn my PS4 on and put the disk in and we will be playing. That guarantee is something online subscriptions will not be able to provide me with.
I much rather pay for a video game here and there, than pay monthly for library of games that I will never truly own.
Call Me Old School
So thats where I stand with videogame subcriptions, I’ll admit I am old school. But honestly I just like to have my physical collection, and even if I don’t buy a game on its release day, I sometimes pick up a game at a bargain price when they go on sale. What matters to me most, is being able to physically have a copy of the game in my hand and knowing it is mine forever.
Sounded a bit possessive there, but you get my point I hope!
So thats my opinion on the debate, what are yours? Please comment below and let me know, would love to take this discussion further!