Game pass

PS Plus Premium vs Xbox Game Pass Ultimate: Which Service Offers the Best Value in 2022?

Sony and Microsoft go hand in hand with their subscription services, and fans are wondering if Xbox Game Pass Ultimate or PS Plus Premium offers better value. Comparing the two services is not easy as they both have their pros and cons. There are a lot of variables at play, but we’ve done our best to determine a winner in Xbox Game Pass Ultimate vs. PS Plus Premium below.

Note that PS Plus Premium hasn’t officially launched yet, so this is a preliminary comparison of the two. We’ll come back to this article once Sony launches its new offerings.

Xbox Game Pass vs. PS Plus Premium: Game Library

The main appeal of Xbox Game Pass and PS Plus Premium is that subscribers have access to a vast library of games that they can access and play at will. However, most of them offer totally different catalogs:

Xbox Game Pass

With Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, you can immediately access and download over 100 games on Xbox or PC. Many of them also include the Xbox Play Anywhere feature that lets you start a game on one platform and pick it up where you left off on another. It also includes Xbox Live Gold, which gives players two Xbox One games and one Xbox 360 game to keep each month. You also have access to EA Play, which has an additional library of games to choose from.

PS Plus Premium

Sony says PS Plus Premium will have around 400 PS4 and PS5 games and 340 PS1, PS2, PSP and PS3 games available to play at launch. Unfortunately, PS3 games have to be streamed in the cloud. However, titles from other platforms can be downloaded and played from the console. PS5 owners also have access to the PS Plus Collection, which contains a number of critically acclaimed next-gen games. Additionally, PS Plus is giving players three games a month to keep as long as they subscribe.

Winner: Provisionally, PS Plus

As for the raw numbers, you’ll get more games with PS Plus Premium. However, it remains to be seen if they will outweigh the quality of Xbox Game Pass.

Xbox Game Pass vs. PS Plus Premium: Cloud Gaming

Both Xbox Game Pass and PS Plus Premium include the ability to stream games to multiple devices via the cloud.

Xbox Game Pass

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate gives players access to Xbox Cloud Gaming. You can stream most Game Pass titles to PC, mobile, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S consoles. It’s one of the best cloud gaming experiences available and offers significantly better performance when playing on Xbox One than when the game is installed natively.

PS Plus Premium

Since PS Plus Premium is gobbling up PS Now, all of that service’s cloud streaming features will be available. However, I’ve always found latency when playing PS Now games to be very noticeable, so we’ll have to see if Sony upgrades this when PS Plus Premium goes live. You can cloud stream on PS4, PS5, and PC, but there’s no mobile option.

Winner: Xbox Game Pass

Sony’s lack of mobile options means Xbox Game Pass is the most versatile service.

Xbox Game Pass vs. PS Plus Premium: Day One Exclusives

The Xbox Series X and PS5 are very similar consoles, and its exclusives (and brand loyalty) are driving sales these days. Unfortunately, Sony and Microsoft have very different philosophies about offering exclusive games on their subscription services from day one.

Xbox Game Pass

Microsoft intends to release each first-party Xbox exclusive on Xbox Game Pass the same day as retail. This means that some of the biggest games of the year, like Starfield, will be available at no additional cost. Many third-party games also launch on Game Pass on day one, which is a lot of savings.

PS Plus Premium

On the other hand, Sony has no plans to add its first-party exclusives to PS Plus Premium on day one. PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan said:

“As far as bringing our own games into this service, or any of our services, as soon as they come out…as you well know, that’s not a route we’ve taken in the past. And that’s not a road we’re going to take with this new service. We believe that if we did that with the games we make at PlayStation Studios, that virtuous circle would be broken. The level of investment we need to make in our studios wouldn’t be possible, and we think the ripple effect on the quality of the games we make wouldn’t be something gamers want.

Sony hasn’t commented on how long PS Plus Premium subscribers will have to wait for new games to hit the service, but we’re not betting that’s soon.

Winner: Xbox Game Pass

It’s a no-brainer to give this one to Microsoft. Getting first-party exclusives (and some third-party titles) from day one is huge value. As new games move into the $70 range, a year of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate pays for itself if you only play 3 first-party games at launch per year.

Xbox Game Pass vs PS Plus Premium: Best Overall Value

To figure out which of these services is the best value, let’s total up what a year of each would cost:

  • Xbox Game Pass: $14.99 x 12 = $179.88
  • PS Plus Premium: $17.99 x 12 = $215.88

While there are more games to choose from, the increased price and lack of a first-day release make PS Plus Premium less value than Xbox Game Pass, at least on paper. We’ll get back to it when it launches in June.

Big winner: Xbox Game Pass

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