Update 12/5/22: Xbox has now made it official – new games built for Series X|S will be seeing prices raise to $70 starting next year. Starting in 2023, titles made for Microsoft’s latest consoles, including the likes of Forza Motorsport, Redfall, and Starfield, will launch with a $70 MSRP in the US. Details on other titles and regions will presumably be coming shortly. Here’s what Microsoft had to say about the matter:
This price reflects the content, scale, and technical complexity of these titles…As with all games developed by our teams at Xbox, they will also be available with Game Pass the same day they launch.
It looks like Xbox price increases could be on the way. After Sony officially announced console price hikes in just about every region outside of the US this summer, many wondered whether or not Microsoft would follow suit with the Xbox ecosystem. Sony’s move marked the first time we have seen console price hikes this deep into the hardware cycle, and after recent comments made by CEO of Microsoft Gaming Phil Spender, it looks like Microsoft might not be immune to global inflationary conditions after all. Head below for more details.
Xbox price increases inbound
Console price hikes (and a plethora of other things we all know, love, and need) are just one of the unfortunate repercussions of the current global economic situation. While it seemed like Xbox gamers might dodge the proverbial bullet here, Microsoft is now tempering its community (and investors) of likely price increases across what could be both its hardware and services.
Speaking at the recent WSJ conference, Xbox boss Phil Spencer said, “I do think at some point we’ll have to raise the prices on certain things, but going into this holiday we thought it was important to maintain the prices.” Spencer also went on to say that Xbox has thus far held pricing on consoles, games, and subscriptions, but that he doesn’t think it will be able to do that forever, “I do think at some point we’ll have to raise some prices on certain things.”
The only question at this point really is when and on what the price hikes will hit.
In the short term, it sounds like Microsoft will maintain pricing on games, consoles, and Xbox Game Pass through the 2022 holiday season, but as far as next year is concerned, it’s anyone’s guess at this point.
Sony has already raised console prices (and even its subscription service in some sense with the new tier system), not to mention the $70 price tag some PS5 titles release with. So it’s safe to assume that Microsoft is at least considering a higher price tag on its first-party Xbox game releases, and it’s hard to imagine Game Pass/Game Pass Ultimate not seeing some kind of price jump come next year at some point. The console? Well sure, who knows? But it’s certainly possible.
In the end, Microsoft enjoys a loyal and dedicated fan base of gamers that’s growing all the time as its Game Pass subscription permeates through the non-hardware-specific gaming space deeper year after year. And they likely aren’t going to jump ship with a few price hikes.
Having said that, it might be smart to ensure you’re locked into an Xbox Game Pass subscription for at least a year or more before the Xbox price increases hit. While there’s no way to tell if this will indeed safeguard you from some kind of shake-up to the service down the line, it is likely your best bet at this point. It also might be a good idea to nab that Xbox Series X or an extra Series S before the possibility of the MSRP jumping up even higher in the coming months.
- Xbox Series S Fortnite/Rocket League bundle: $260 (Reg. $300)
- Xbox Series X: $499
- Xbox Game Pass Ultimate 3-months: $27.50 (Reg. $45)
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