Game streaming has failed yet again with Stadia’s sad and misguided attempts to overturn the gaming market. We could easily imagine that as a headline, a bit emotionally charged but useful nonetheless.
However, the sorry state of stadia is not analogous to the state of gaming streaming as a whole. There are two thriving game subscription services that we want to put the focus on today.
PlayStation Now VS Xbox Game Pass
We should note that only PlayStation Now actually supports game streaming, but Microsoft is making efforts to offer this as an option to Xbox Game Pass subscribers shortly. So, we don’t see a problem mentioning it in this context.
Both of these subscriptions grant you instant access to vast libraries of games filled with classics and recent releases alike. But aside from the fact that the end goal here is to offer players instant access to a vast selection of games, PlayStation Now and Xbox Game Pass could not be more different.
The prices, quantity of games and accessibility of these subscriptions differ wildly. Which begs the question of which one is better? And that is what we’ll strive to answer as we break down the pros and cons of each subscription. So, without any further ado, let’s begin.
First things first we have to consider the price. After all, if the price isn’t right, many gamers simply won’t buy a subscription. Regardless of how good it is or what it has to offer?
Price of PlayStation Now
At the moment, PlayStation Now has the lead when it comes to this. While it is one-month subscription costs $9.99 a month, then 3 months and 12-month plans bring the overall price down to $24.99 and $59.99, respectively.
If you break these numbers down, this means that the 12-month plan reduces the monthly cost to a mere $4.99, effectively having it.
Sure, you have to commit to a year-round subscription, but considering what you’re getting this is as sweet as a sweet deal can get, and since this is the plan that most users purchase any way we’ll use it as a baseline while referring to the Price of PS now later.
Price of Xbox Game Pass
Meanwhile, the Xbox Game Pass only offers one-month plans but in three different flavors.
First, there is a Game Pass Console for $9.99
Then there is Game Pass Pc for $4.99
And finally, Game Pass Ultimate For $14.99
The first two plans do, exactly, as advertise. They grant instant access to a game library for either the Xbox One or PC plus some exclusive discounts and day-one access to Xbox game studio titles when they are released.
If you game on both the Xbox One and PC, you’d need to purchase both plans separately to enjoy what the game pass has to offer on both platforms. Well, either that or you could get the game pass ultimate plan, which includes both the Console and PC pass, as well as an Xbox live gold subscription for good measure.
Xbox Live Gold Subscription
With the Xbox Live Gold subscription, you get access to online multiplayer, additional discounts, and most excitingly, you get two to four games added to your account each month, which can be accessed so long as you’re subscribed to Xbox live gold.
It means that you could forget about the game pass down the line should it no longer excite you and still retain a healthy library of games tied to your account as long as your Xbox Like Gold Subscription is active.
|Is PS now like Xbox game pass?|
Is there a difference between Xbox Game Pass and Xbox game pass Ultimate?
Does PS have a game pass?
Do they take games off Xbox game pass?
We repeated the word games exactly five times now. This instance not included, but this is too abstract sounding. So, let’s make it more concrete by taking a look at exactly how many games you get with each subscription and highlight a few fan favorites.
Games for PlayStation Now
At the moment, PlayStation Now offers over 800 titles, including games for the ps2, ps3 and, of course, ps4. With so many games spanning multiple console generations, you can bet there’s something for everyone to enjoy here from AAA games and first-party exclusives to indie releases.
This list includes the likes of spider-man, control bloodborne and metal gear solid 5, the phantom pain for the ps4 the last of us and red dead redemption for the ps3 and destroys all humans and god of war 2 for the ps2 among many others.
Games for Xbox Game Pass
As for Xbox Game Pass, it only offers 400 games, and this is then split between the Console and the PC Passes. So, if you only plan on getting one of these, considers the selection of games effectively halved.
Still, there are some impressive titles here with the console portion offering red dead, redemption 2, the Witcher 3, wild hunt, doom monster hunter world and, of course, the untitled goose game.
Meanwhile, the PC portion of the game pass includes the likes of Halo, the master chief collection, final fantasy xv, Darksiders 3 and Forza Horizon 4. Some of the games are available on both the PC and Console Passes.
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Which offer less money?
Overall, PlayStation Now offers more content for less money. The game pass ultimate does present itself as an excellent purchase for the folk who want the game pass on both platforms but at $15 a month.
The costs add up fast, and besides, you could get the same deal on ps4 by buying the year-round subscriptions for both PlayStation Now and PlayStation Plus.
The latter of which unlocks multiplayer offers additional discounts and nets you two free games every month so long as the subscription is active.
The 12-month plan for the Ps Plus also costs $59.99, and it’s been known to go on discount itself, but even disregarding this fact, the two subscriptions together go for about $10 a month.
What about project xCloud?
The only problem would be in getting them both at the same time since this would make the initial investment quite substantial. However, the value of the game pass ultimate will get even more enticing once Microsoft launches project xCloud later this year.
We don’t know when exactly this happens, but we know that the only way to get access to the service at launch will be through the game pass ultimate subscription.
So, for the price of $15, gamers will get access to the game pass itself Xbox Live Gold and project xCloud rest in peace stadia. Thus, the way we see it, Sony holds a firm lead in terms of price, especially in the long run, but the price isn’t everything.
In addition to the price, we must also consider how convenient each of these services is to use.
What platforms do they support, and how do they go about it?
How is a convenient Xbox game pass?
Remember how we said that the Xbox game pass does not support game streaming at the moment. The way we see it, that’s a huge plus in its favor as it means the service infrastructure has been built from the ground up to allow you to download and play all the games locally.
It applies to both the Console and pc pass. It isn’t to say that we won’t appreciate the added convenience project xCloud will inject into the service with streaming as an option, but even without it, the game pass stands on its own.
How convenient is PlayStation now?
By contrast, PlayStation now almost exclusively relies on streaming. Some games for the ps4 can be downloaded and played locally on the ps4, but this doesn’t apply to ps3 and ps2 titles, and naturally, it doesn’t apply to any titles if you use the Windows version of PS now.
Anytime you have to stream a game, you’re guaranteed to suffer from increased input lag, not to mention inferior image quality, and that’s if we take for granted that your internet connection is fast and stable enough to support this in the first place.
What’s worse, unless you want to deal with emulators, you have to use a dual shock 4 controller even if you’re using Ps Now on the PC.
Talk about an inconvenience the only upside to the Ps Now in this regard is that once you’re subscribed, you can use the service on both the ps4 and PC. No need to purchase a separate plan for each Console or an idea that benevolently offers both at three times the price.
In terms of better gaming subscription service
So, when we take all of the above into consideration, which is the better gaming subscription service? That depends on what you’re looking to get out of them. Both are great if you play into their strengths, but neither is without its weaknesses.
In terms of price
If you’re mainly concerned with the pricing, then Ps Now is the clear winner. The only way Xbox Game Pass can compete is if you just need the PC Pass, which also comes in at $5.
In terms of Games
It also has the benefit of offering more games, although let’s be real you really shouldn’t purchase either subscription because of how many games are on it but because of which games are on it.
In this sense, PlayStation Now still stands out as it allows you to experience some of the best exclusive ps4 has to offer like spider-man and bloodborne even on PC. You’ll have to deal with a higher input lag, but you’ll still get to experience them.
In terms of smoothest gaming experience
If, on the other hand, you’re looking for the smoothest gaming experience Xbox Game Pass is king. The fact that all of the games are played locally from your machine means that you don’t suffer any of the adverse side effects commonly associated with game streaming.
It is especially crucial if you’re looking to test your skills out in some online multiplayer games. Plus, it doesn’t pressure you into using a controller on a PC that otherwise has compatibility issues with the platform. That said, it’s generally a lot more expensive.
Even the ultimate plan which is supposed to offer the best value can’t compete with the annual plans for PS Now and PS Plus together, which accomplished the same things as Xbox PC and Console Pass and the Xbox Live Gold Subscription together but have to be purchased separately.
In terms of features and versatility
Once project xCloud drops the ball will be firmly in Microsoft’s court in terms of the features and versatility, but even then, Sony will still hold appeal for gamers on a budget who just want an instant game library. As long as you keep this in mind, you should have no trouble figuring out which subscription is the better pick for you.
In conclusion, PS now has more games and better exclusives, but most of the games have to be streamed, which isn’t ideal. Conversely, the Xbox Game Pass allows you to play all the games locally. However, it not only has fewer games, but it costs more as well. How you decide to weigh these pros and cons is up to you, though.