Xbox Game Pass is coming to Windows 10, but many questions remain

It's been rumoured for a while, but it's finally coming: Microsoft's Netflix-esque subscription service for gaming, the Xbox Game Pass, is coming to the PC with more than 100 games at launch.

Games from Microsoft's own studios, including recent acquisitions Obsidian and inXile, will be available on Xbox Game Pass for PC on the day they're released, just as they are on Xbox One.

In a statement, Phil Spencer said, "We're working with over 75 developers and publishers to bring PC content to the service and we'll ensure the library remains curated and full of great PC titles across a variety of genres, with new games added every month". He made it clear that he believes "you should have choice in where you buy your PC games".

As well as multiple stores, Microsoft will be introducing features into their games to nurture a shared player community across those platforms.

Many gamers don't like UWP games because they're locked down, meaning players can't tweak the games and install mods - something many PC gamers are passionate about. While not technically a part of Game Pass, titles like Gears of War 5, Age of Empires 1-3 Definitive Editions, and the upcoming Halo: Master Chief Collection will be purchasable on Steam when they launch. A future where Microsoft's games end up on GOG or the Epic Games Store doesn't seem unlikely, then. Spencer emphasizes, "the player should be at the center of their gaming experience" and admits that its previous preference for its own store might not have been the most user-friendly attitude. If Win32 means nothing to you, the main takeaway is it's the format that virtually all your other Windows games and programs use. For now, this announcement only covers Steam and the Microsoft Store, but Spencer says that Microsoft will look to bring its PC games to other digital storefronts in the future.

As Spencer says: "When I think about the role we play as a company to support and evolve gaming on Windows, it's critical that we make decisions that reinforce the open nature of the PC".


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