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Microsoft’s killing Xbox Live Gold, replacing it with more Game Pass

You might not be a fan of paying for Xbox Game Pass, but in the future you won't have any choice as Microsoft reveal the new Xbox Game Pass Core subscription.

Xbox Game Pass core price: an image of Xbox Game Pass by the grave of Xbox Live and Deals With Gold

17/07/2023 Xbox Game Pass Core has been announced by Microsoft. The copy and title of this article have been updated to affect that.

In the fallout from the tumultuous trial between Microsoft, Activision Blizzard, and the FTC, a new Xbox announcement confirms that Microsoft is going to kill off Xbox Live Gold and Games With Gold in favor of a new Xbox Game Pass tier: Xbox Game Pass Core. While your chances of playing Call of Duty on Xbox Game Pass have drastically improved, this change might make the subscription service a lot more confusing to some of you – and you might find that you can’t play all the best Xbox Game Pass games you want to with your membership.

Shared online initially by content creator ‘Benji-Sales‘, a Korean-language site has claimed that Xbox Live Gold is set to be replaced by Xbox Game Pass Core. This has since been confirmed by Microsoft through Xbox Wire.

Xbox Game Pass Core will launch on September 14, 2023 – completely ending the subscription’s Games With Gold service along with it. In a similar fashion to Xbox Live Gold, the new service will be required to access online multiplayer services for games that aren’t free-to-play. So, if you want to play some of the best free shooting games or any of the best free Xbox games, you should be fine without it.

However, there’s a reason why you should consider subscribing to this new service. Not only is it reportedly the same price as Xbox Live Gold, but Xbox Game Pass Core is also going to give players access to around 25 of the best Xbox games – well, from those available on Xbox Game Pass anyway.

If you’re wondering what those games are, a now-deleted post from PureXbox has the following listed (as per Stealth Optional‘s own reporting – and confirmed by Xbox Wire):

  • Among Us
  • Descenders
  • Dishonored 2
  • DOOM Eternal
  • Fable Anniversary
  • Fallout 4
  • Fallout 76
  • Forza Horizon 4
  • Gears 5
  • Grounded
  • Halo 5: Guardians
  • Halo Wars 2
  • Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice
  • Human Fall Flat
  • Ori and the Will of the Wisps
  • Psychonauts 2
  • State of Decay 2
  • Elder Scrolls Online: Tamriel Unlimited

This selection of games includes some of the best Xbox RPG games and best Xbox racing games out there. Xbox Game Pass core will cost you $9.99 and you can find out more about the new tiers below:

Xbox Game Pass Core Price tiers: an image of all the new tiers from Microsoft

Adding to this, Stealth Optional has reported that players will be able to keep any titles they have redeemed through Xbox’s Games With Gold service over the years and Xbox Game Pass Core will also maintain the 10% off sale price for “Xbox Game Pass [games] seen in other forms of the membership”. So, if there’s another game you want on Xbox Game Pass’ standard tier, you should be able to pick it up a little cheaper with Xbox Game Pass Core. This has also been confirmed, and Xbox Live Gold members will automatically be converted to the new service on September 14.

How popular is this going to be when Game Pass Ultimate is right there? Well, we’ll just have to wait and see. However, Microsoft did just turn on a load of old Call of Duty multiplayer servers on Xbox Live, so having access to online multiplayer right now is a must.