Video game fans were thrilled to see Sony buy out the makers of Halo as a counterattack against Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard, but let’s not forget that there’s an older, more serious issue that needs a quick response – Xbox Game Pass. To push back, Sony announced in late 2021 that in the spring of 2022 we would see the release of Project Spartacus, Sony’s new subscription service that will hopefully not share the fate of the Roman gladiator it is named after.
I’m not a Microsoft sponsor, but it’s pretty hard to argue against the will of a service like the Xbox Game Pass. For a low monthly fee, players have unlimited access to many of Xbox’s most popular titles.
Any skeptic reading this might think that “a lot” doesn’t include the most popular titles, but no, the campaign of Infinite Halo, the biggest title Microsoft has ever made, was available for $1 a month for the first three months – and multiplayer was completely free. It’s such a good deal that you almost have to wonder how Microsoft manages to stay afloat – at least until you learn that Microsoft’s fortunes are going a little beyond the gaming industry.
Xbox Gamepass started in 2017, and Sony could easily ignore it back then, because the competition’s offering of unlimited games, mostly free, isn’t terribly scary when the competition hasn’t. hardly any big exclusives, but since then Microsoft has been pulling a Disney and acquiring many big players in the development world. Sony, on the other hand, only has Playstation Now, a cloud gaming server meant for playing older games, and Playstation Plus, a pretty scam subscription service.