Xbox Game Pass is generally considered one of the best deals in the gaming industry, offering access to hundreds of games for a single monthly subscription fee. A bunch of those games can even be streamed from the cloud onto phones and other devices that would be unable to run them. Unfortunately Microsoft has just announced the price is going up.
Game Pass Ultimate will rise from $14.99 to $16.99 in the U.S., from £10.99 to £12.99 in the U.K., and from AU$15.95 to AU$18.95 in Australia. Meanwhile the basic Game Pass tier on Xbox will rise from $9.99 to $10.99 in the U.S., from £7.99 to £8.99 in the U.K., and from AU$10.95 to AU$11.95 in Australia. PC Game Pass prices are not changing, according to The Verge.
These new prices will come into effect on July 6, or August 13 for existing monthly subscribers. If you want to keep the normal price for as long as possible, we recommend picking up some pre-paid membership cards and redeeming them soon.
Microsoft also confirmed that it will be increasing the price of the Xbox Series X in a number of regions, though the U.S. will not be one of them. American buyers will, for the time being, still be able to pick up the console for the same $500 price as always. Sadly U.K. and Australian gamers won’t be so lucky, with the price of the console increasing to £479.99 / AU$799 from August 1.
Raising the price of gaming hardware isn’t new. Sony notably raised the price of the PS5 last year, in defiance of traditional mid-cycle price cuts, citing challenging “challenging economic conditions.” The U.S. was unaffected, and to date the PS5’s price has remained the same in the region. Other countries weren’t so lucky.
At the time Microsoft remained committed to freezing the Xbox Series X launch price, but didn’t rule out a future increase. Now it seems the company has decided the time is right to raise prices across several regions. Speaking to The Verge, Kari Perez, head of communications for Xbox, said that the company has “adjusted the prices to reflect the competitive conditions in each market.”
As for the rising cost of Game Pass, it’s no big surprise that Microsoft wants you to pay more. The cost of subscriptions have increased over the past couple of years, while Game Pass has remained steady since it launched in 2017. Given the increasing number of titles on offer, it’s understandable that prices would have to increase eventually.
That’s not to say we have to be happy about it, but we do understand. And $11 a month to have access to over 400 games, including day one inclusion of first party titles, is still a pretty good deal; certainly compared to paying $70 for a solo copy.
But it’s crucial subscribers be aware of any pricing changes, just so you can be prepared for them. And make sure you know how to cancel Xbox Game Pass, just in case the changing price isn’t acceptable to you.