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Xbox Removes Yearly XBL Gold Subscription | Is Free Multiplayer Coming?

Is Free Multiplayer Coming to Xbox?

  • Yes

    Votes: 101 28.9%
  • No Way

    Votes: 249 71.1%

  • Total voters
    350
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Agent X

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Thats exactly the point. Having a barrier to Fortnite hurts your ROE on your entire ecosystem. Which has a much higher chance or netting your more money than the barrier plus the revenue stream.

OK, I see your point now.

That said, I still don't believe this would move the needle in any significant manner, as the only net benefit is for people who only play games on Microsoft game consoles and absolutely nowhere else. Everyone else is unaffected, they can already play the game on their platform of choice for free and have nothing else to gain.

This is effectively "preaching to the choir".
 

Nikana

Go Go Neo Rangers!
Jan 26, 2016
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OK, I see your point now.

That said, I still don't believe this would move the needle in any significant manner, as the only net benefit is for people who only play games on Microsoft game consoles and absolutely nowhere else. Everyone else is unaffected, they can already play the game on their platform of choice for free and have nothing else to gain.

This is effectively "preaching to the choir".

Fair point that it could be a bit too late in some manner but it still exists as a barrier for future games that will come and go or come and stay.

Edit: especially stuff without cross play. And it would be a nice feature to be a le to say no online cost to play any games vs just FTP.
 
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Golgo 13

The Man With The Golden Dong
Jun 14, 2014
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If this is true, Microsoft bringing serious heat to the next-gen competition. Free online would be an incredible tactical advantage.
 
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reinking

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Jun 1, 2020
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If this is true, Microsoft bringing serious heat to the next-gen competition. Free online would be an incredible tactical advantage.
Except Sony had that advantage and it did not make much difference. Plus, Sony could always roll back to their original PS+ where you get free online play but pay for the games you each month.
 
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sinnergy

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Jun 16, 2007
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Maybe MS thinks it’s time for change and that after 15 years online gaming behind a paywall its time for that legacy to be free of charge and shift focus to a more sub oriented strategy to get and play games.

would really make them different from Sony and Nintendo who compared to them created paywalls more recently.
 

Mmnow

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Jun 16, 2020
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Why would Sony be forced to follow suit? Was Xbox forced to follow suit last generation when PS3 online was free?

Well, yeah. But then our scenario doesn't work. We established that two posts ago. In this imaginary world we've created, Sony reacts.

Microsoft isn't adding value to GamePass by removing Gold, unless they lower the price (as GP already includes Gold). This move actually devalues GamePass because GP currently includes the cost of Gold.

Sony is much less interested in pushing PS Now. If they made online free, it wouldn't increase PS Now numbers. If they ONLY allowed online play for PS Now members, they'd piss a lot of people off, unless they made it as cheap as PS+ currently is (they wouldn't).

Two things, one is you can't divorce paying for online from the overall service. Getting rid of online creates value. Gamepass already has value. That's not to say that subscribers will transfer, but you'd be daft to presume MS won't do everything they can to make it happen.

Second, you don't know how Sony feel about PS Now. Do you really think they're happy MS can boast asking five times more subscribers for their younger service? Do you think they're happy about all the Future of Gaming articles?

Either way, you haven't answered my question. You've change the direction just so you can deny it'll ever happen, but that's not relevant to what we're saying.

If this unlikely scenario of online pay disappearing happens, how does Sony maintain value in Plus?
 
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Mmnow

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Jun 16, 2020
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I'm not sure what the point would be. As it stands now, PS Plus and PS Now combined cost less than Game Pass Ultimate. Forcing PS Plus and PS Now to merge into a single service would do nothing to benefit the consumer...it would just eliminate the choices for people like @Vawn above who only want one service and not the other. A merged service would cost these users more than what they were paying previously.



If Microsoft were to make online play totally free, with no strings attached, then Sony and Nintendo would likely do the same.

Sony would probably make some tweaks to PS Plus, since it would no longer be required for online play. If Microsoft consolidates to a single subscription, then Sony could follow suit, and (despite what I said above) merge PS Plus with PS Now, since it would be still be cheaper than Microsoft's offering. People like @Vawn would then decide whether this service is worth purchasing, or just drop subscriptions altogether and stick with free online play. Don't forget that players on Xbox One would also have to make a similar decision--either pay more than what they were paying before, or play online for free and forget about the other subscription stuff.

As much as some people here are rooting for Microsoft to "go free" and somehow stick it to Sony and Nintendo, I doubt that it's going to be that simple, or that they have purely altruistic intentions here. I wouldn't put it past Microsoft to "giveth" free online play and "taketh" some other "freedom" in the process--for instance, restricting certain DLC/perks to Game Pass Ultimate subscribers only.

Want that new Call of Duty map pack? It's available exclusively to Game Pass Ultimate subscribers for 60 days! Extra bonus for GPU members: get exclusive access to the golden guns with double the firing rate and quadruple the ammo load!

Be careful what you wish for.

You've written a lot here to basically agree with me.

But I'm sorry, its much too early to worry about barred DLC. The idea that Microsoft will poison the chalice but Sony... Won't? Will, but Microsoft will do it first?

Either way, its just not relevant now. Nothing ever moves forward if you're scared about how bad actors might take advantage. Presume the best and react when there's something wrong to react to.
 

DJ Shalad

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Dec 10, 2018
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There are many F2P users or a hefty chunk on xbox and playstation. Microsoft wont stop charging them. Sony should do the same ...
 

Inviusx

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Jan 4, 2016
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Highly unlikely, they probably realise that there is a large cross section of people who buy 12 months of Gold and Gamepass so it looks better for the shareholders by bumping up Ultimate subs.
 
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SamFo

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May 13, 2015
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Something doesn't add up...

90 million subscribers at around 10 USD per month Is almost 1 billion per month.

I just don't see them removing that? Because they are focussing on game pass... - must be more to it?
 
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Aug 28, 2019
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Something doesn't add up...

90 million subscribers at around 10 USD per month Is almost 1 billion per month.

I just don't see them removing that? Because they are focussing on game pass... - must be more to it?

The 90 million figure is guaranteed to include free silver subs.
 

Somoza

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Jul 21, 2019
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My vote is no. I dont think so. I think they will re-package their services together xcloud-live-gamepass so they are starting to fade the old system. That said, voucher resellers (websites selling year long subs for cheaper than official sellers) will have a bad time if true xD.

That said, if they manage to offer a free version with only online play (as it should be if they are serious about mixing their platform with the pc crowd) that would be a huge plus for the future.
 
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Nov 5, 2017
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Except Sony had that advantage and it did not make much difference.

How many units would Sony have sold if multiplayer wasn't free? Seems like the kind of thing you would need some sort of scientific polling data to even be able to generate a rough estimate.
 

Three

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Oct 26, 2014
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I'm almost certain that MS will kill the xbox live gold subscription now that they are getting $15 a month
($180 annually) from gamepass ultimate subscribers. They have stopped selling yearly gold subscriptions and may announce its termination near the end of the year. Makes sense considering that it's free for PC but not free on Xbox.
 

billyxci

13 year old console warrior. Put me on ignore.
Aug 3, 2014
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lol no.

they've only cancelled the 12 month plan because they want to force you to sign up for game pass ultimate which will have 12 months as standard. either pay for the premium subscription or renew every 3/6months (at a great cost). more $ for MS

if anything Sony should be the ones offering free online since PS+ doesn't have as much value compared to XBL/GAMEPASS/Xcloud.
 
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BPX

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Three

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Oct 26, 2014
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No chance.
Why? Only something like less than 50% of the install base subscribe to live. Let's guess at say 25 Million. If they start selling Gamepass to more and more of those people then Live becomes less and less value for money since instead of paying the two subscriptions it's better to merge the two into one "ultimate" subscription and be done with xbox live gold. Xbox live gold becomes redundant at that point as more and more people subscribe to ultimate.
 

billyxci

13 year old console warrior. Put me on ignore.
Aug 3, 2014
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They could merge them into a single product.
12 months XBL will be part of game pass ultimate which of course will also offer Xcloud.

i reckon it'll be:

XBL only - 1 month
XBL only - 3 months
XBL only - 6 months

Game Pass Ultimate (w/XBL + xCloud) - 1 month
Game Pass Ultimate (w/XBL + xCloud) - 3 months
Game Pass Ultimate (w/XBL + xCloud) - 6 months
Game Pass Ultimate (w/XBL + xCloud) - 12 months
 
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sinnergy

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Jun 16, 2007
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Yes, and create a extra incentive for them , as Nintendo and SONY both have that feature behind a paywall. And make money from game pass or ultimate Xcloud

also would be inline with marketing , centered around gamers / gaming everywhere.
 
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BadBurger

Gold Member
Nov 6, 2019
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I doubt it. Microsoft seems to be throwing a wide net. I got a very long Xbox Live ultimate with Game Pass or whatever it's called just for buying a Xbox One X. They seem to be wanting to go the Netflix route but for games and that's awesome to me. I can even get a bunch of games on PC from it.

I think Microsoft is gearing up for this to be their long term strategy, even if Phil Spencer sends mixed messaging sometimes.
 

GHG

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Nov 9, 2006
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You won't be able to buy it without gamepass.

That's what will change.
 

JORMBO

Darkness no more
Mar 5, 2009
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This would be huge for me. I don't really play a lot of online stuff, so it's annoying to pay $50/yr for the few times I do want to play. I usually don't care much about the free games.

Xbox already offers free cloud saves too. So if they give free multiplayer then Sony's service is still charging for multiplayer and cloud saves. That gives MS a big edge for me.
 
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Three

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Oct 26, 2014
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lol no.

they've only cancelled the 12 month plan because they want to force you to sign up for game pass ultimate which will have 12 months as standard. either pay for the premium subscription or renew every 3/6months (at a great cost). more $ for MS

if anything Sony should be the ones offering free online since PS+ doesn't have as much value compared to XBL/GAMEPASS/Xcloud.
Sony’s services are actually cheaper for more (PSnow is both streaming and downloads and you don't need PS+ with it) but xbox live becoming free would really kill Sony's subs because they are mostly PS+ subs and not PSNow. It would mean Sony would really need to push Now subscriptions (maybe by offering their first party games day and date) to increase subscriptions.
 
Nov 5, 2017
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Yes, it will be free.

A lot of gamers seem to have graduated from the Blockbuster school of business, where you must protect your existing revenue streams at all costs regardless of industry trends or disruptors entering the market.
 

Hendrick's

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Jan 7, 2014
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well lets say very conservatively that 10% of those are Gold members.

Why remove a 100 million USD a month revenue stream?
They will turn the Gold subs into GP subs. Many of those people will keep subbed when they see how awesome it is. Sure they will lose some, but I think it's a good move.
 
Nov 21, 2018
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Assuming Gold is dropped and MS hopes as many people resub with GP or GPU, the starting revenue loss would be this without factoring in resubs at GP/GPU prices.

Isn't it something like 40 million Gold subs? Whatever it is, this is X

The price of a year of Gold is $60. MS's portion might be closer to $50 after you take into account people buying on deal and retailers getting their cut.

So 40 million x $50 = $2 billion in lost Gold subs

Also loss of microtrans as some people might say fuck it, I'm not doing GP, so no need for buying as much MTX as I don't need it for competitive MP

But then MS would recapture sales depending how many people resign under a higher priced GP/GPU plan (which I think is regularly priced at $120-180/year).

So making it simple ballpark math, for every new GP/GPU sign up at regular price, it can over 2-3 normal Gold gamers dropping off.
well lets say very conservatively that 10% of those are Gold members.

Why remove a 100 million USD a month revenue stream?

You do realise if Microsoft makes Xbox Live Multiplayer free on Xbox consoles it would bring huge amount of Sony's and Nintendo's fanbase to Microsoft's ecosystem. This would be huge for Microsoft. Just think how much revenue Microsoft would make in digital sales.
 

Hendrick's

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Jan 7, 2014
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I'm 90% certain they will. Now that Xbox is a platform that spans consoles, PC, and with xCloud essentially any device, it doesn't make sense to charge for online for just the console gamers.
 

SamFo

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May 13, 2015
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You do realise if Microsoft makes Xbox Live Multiplayer free on Xbox consoles it would bring huge amount of Sony's and Nintendo's fanbase to Microsoft's ecosystem. This would be huge for Microsoft. Just think how much revenue Microsoft would make in digital sales.
How many people would you estimate would make the leap from Sony and Nintendo in the first year? (rough numbers are fine)
 

AmuroChan

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Nov 23, 2013
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The cynic in me thinks this is just MS preventing people from stocking up on Gold subs and then using the $1 promo to upgrade their entire sub to GP Ultimate.
 
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Heart_Attack

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Sep 25, 2018
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No fucking way they make it free. And if they do, it means they'll start raising the price of Gamepass. Like AmuroChan mentioned above, i feel it has more to do with people exploiting the $1 promo to stack Gold Subs into GP Ultimate.
 

Genx3

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Jun 23, 2019
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I think XBL will become free but Game Pass will be $15 a month with no future discounts coming.
This makes sense. GP is still a huge value at even $15 while paying for XBL was hurting the Xbox adoption rate.
 
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