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LONG BLOG

The Xbox Game Pass taking us for a ride?

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Wowza so who doesn't love that this here newfangled Xbox Game Pass? "It's Netflix for video games!" I hear the eager masses howl. "Every new Microsoft exclusive will come to the Game Pass, no extra cost to the consumer, just the existing subscription payment" declares the benevolent Microsoft, hoping for piggy to come a little closer.

Petting gamers with one hand, whilst holding a hatchet behind their back in the other. 

Ah, but Greg, you are so cynical. Why are you so cynical? Do you not feel that this is merely Microsoft attempting to make up for lost ground? Knowing that the competition is already millions of units ahead in sales, perhaps they're just trying to win whoever they can over to sympathy with Microsoft. You know, good publicity for their current and future endeavours? Those pricey Xbox One X's aren't going to shift themselves, you know?

Well, faithful reader who has managed this far. Do you not feel that the only platform proudly cramming the most disgusting business practices of modern day gaming into its flagship products might, I don't know, be looking to profit from said practices? 

For it is not cynicism which motivates my distrust in the Xbox Game Pass, it is a straightforward reading of the terrain.

It is reality.

To me, the generous and appealing aforementioned programme appears to be a front, at least to me, for all these sub-par multiplayer-oriented exclusives they squirt out these days to find their way into our homes and monetise themselves in the long term. 

Imagine yourselves, if you will indulge my metaphor, at the front gate to a theme park/amusement park/whatever your regional equivalent for those places where they keep all the roller coasters. You discover that the ticket price for entry is a mere 15 dollars/quid/groats. How exciting! All of these rides for your unlimited use, and for such a low cost! 

Ah, but here is the catch. As you get on each ride, you realise that other customers are running on a track parallel to yours, but because they paid extra, their ride goes faster, at the expense of the speed of your pedestrian little experience. The physical mechanics of the tracks are such that your cart will slow down in order to power the increased speed of their cart. All around the park, the elite who pay extra are subsidising your mediocre little experience. These elite are a constant advertisement for you. They flaunt their superior experience because they have no choice. This is how the experience is designed.

Your experience is cheap, but compared to those still paying their way, your experience is a hollow one. You want to live it up like those guys!

Welcome to Game Pass World! A front for the cancer upon our industry that is microtransactions. An advertisement designed to sucker in those who want to have the best experience they can. Who can blame them? They're playing video games after all. They want to have a good time!

But who can say? Perhaps I am too negative and need to lighten up. We will see what the future will bring. And at least for now, the good news will always be the many great single player experiences offered. 

Also, it's my first Community Blog. How did I do, anyone who read this far? My favourite bit was the title.

- I'm wafting gently into your eyes


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About Shades of Gregone of us since 3:40 PM on 01.19.2018

I write with all the panache and style you'd expect from South East England's least prominent historian of Victorian Ghosts and 18th Century Chinese Pirate anal sex power dynamics.

Against my better judgement, I play video games like many people might experience water. I'll consume a bunch of it with meals, and once a day I'll immerse myself in an all-consuming orgy of video games as nakedly as possible, in order to feel clean.

But seriously ...

I'm a polite young chap with a zeal for gaming and games culture, and in the next few months (hopefully) I'll have a purty degree in history to flash in people's faces, to give off the illusion of respectability I desperately crave.

When the time finds me, I love to game. Hence why I'm here. I'm sure we all have that in common. I also love to debate and have opinions and stuff. I'm so sorry.