Xbox Game Pass cannibalises game sales, admits Microsoft

Xbox Game Pass cannibalises game sales, admits Microsoft in a document. It all sounds a little extreme to be fair, but let’s learn more.

Game Pass is a massive success for Microsoft. At the small cost of just £8 a month for the basic subscription tier, the service is described as Netflix for gaming. It provides subscribers access to 100s of games at a very competitive price. Moreover, the service also includes first-party titles at launch.

xbox price increase
Credit: Microsoft

Is Xbox Game Pass good or bad for Microsoft?

Subscribers a lot of money, rather than having to spend £50 to £70 on a new release that they might not end up liking. We’ve all been there before, wasting money on a full-priced game only to be left feeling disappointed.

In October 2022, it was reported that the subscription service generated $2.9 billion from consoles in 2021. Furthermore, throughout the calendar year of 2021, Xbox gaming as a whole generated a total of $16.28 billion.

However, in January 2023, it was reported that Xbox gaming had fallen by 13% year-on-year. This is despite lead communications for Microsoft, Frank Shaw claiming that Game Pass set “new highs” for the subscription service.

xbox v playstation
Credit: Microsoft

It isn’t really eating games, right?

That being said, as reported by, by Microsoft’s own admission, despite how well the service continues to perform, a document in relation to the Activision Blizzard takeover says: “Xbox Game Pass will lead to a cannibalization of Buy-to-Play sales“.

The documentation also acknowledged that: “its internal analysis demonstrates a decline in base sales of games twelve months after their addition to Xbox Game Pass.

Finally, do you believe that Xbox Game Pass is good or bad for new game sales? Let us know your thoughts across our social media channels.

While you’re here, be sure to check out our video of the week. 10 of the scariest horror games of all time are shown off. What is your favourite horror game?

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Featured Image Credit: Microsoft/Source: