Gamers, rejoice—as PlayStation has now announced that they will be providing a subscription service similar to Xbox’s Game Pass. PlayStation Plus and Xbox Live have been around for years, but Xbox’s Game Pass and PlayStation’s new PlayStation Plus improve upon those services tenfold. But which is better?
For this comparison, we outline what exactly you get with each service and the different tiers that they have. We will not be taking into consideration platform exclusives, as we consider that to be a separate point, and most people know which they prefer on that front, anyway.
Both services also offer yearly pricings, but we will cover the monthly pricings in this article.
What do you get with Xbox Game Pass?
Xbox has two tiers where their subscription service is concerned: Xbox Game Pass and Game Pass Ultimate. Both provide a stellar experience for Xbox users and include a ton of games. Here are the differences:
Xbox Game Pass
With regular Xbox Game Pass, you get:
- Over 100 games that Xbox describes as high-quality
- Constant addition of new games
- Xbox Game Studios games that are available on launch day
- Exclusive member discounts and deals
This costs $9.99 a month.
Game Pass Ultimate
The higher tier Game Pass Ultimate provides you with:
- The same offerings of regular Xbox Game Pass
- PC Game Pass
- EA Play, which includes 93 games and discounts on EA titles
- The ability to play games from the cloud services on Xbox, mobile devices, and PC
- Free perks, such as in-game content, DLCs, and partner offers
- Xbox Live Gold, which gives you two free games a month and multiplayer capabilities for non-free-to-play titles
This costs $14.99 a month.
What do you get with PlayStation Plus?
PlayStation Plus will soon have three tiers to choose from, these being PlayStation Plus Essential, PlayStation Plus Extra, and PlayStation Plus Premium. Here are the differences:
- At least two games to download every month (sometimes three)
- Exclusive discounts for Plus members
- Cloud storage so you don’t have to solely rely on physical saves
- Online multiplayer access
It is $9.99 a month.
- All of what’s included with the Essential tier
- Up to 400 PS4 and PS5 games to download whenever and play. This includes blockbuster titles as well, not just indie games.
This will be $14.99 a month.
- All of what’s included in both the Essential and Extra tiers
- An additional 340 games on top of the 400 from the Extra tier
- Access to a cloud streaming service for PS3 games
- Access to a cloud streaming service for PS1, PS2, PSP, and PS4 games, in places where PlayStation Now is available
- A retro catalogue of adored classics, which includes PS1, PS2, and PSP games that can be downloaded
- Time-limited game trials so that you can try games before you buy.
This will be $17.99 a month.
Which is better?
In terms of price, the two services are pretty comparable. Both subscriptions offer similar functionality and will allow you to cloud game, dependent on which tier you choose to go for. That said, Ultimate offers streaming across multiple devices. Along with the inclusion of PC Game Pass, you may prefer this functionality if you play a lot on PC or mobile. Furthermore, players who primarily play sports titles may prefer the access to EA Play and its vast catalog of sports entries.
PlayStation Premium is three dollars more than Game Pass Ultimate, but when paying for the highest tier, you will get over 700 games, which is a lot of playtime. Not all of the titles will be heavy hitters, but many AAA titles have been promised (exact list TBD), and Game Pass has its fair share of filler games.
PlayStation is also catching up a bit more on the backwards compatibility front by allowing players to download PS1, PS2, and PSP games, and stream PS3 games. So, players who previously favored Xbox for being able to play old games will now have that privilege on PlayStation, as well, though with latency for PS3 titles.
Time will tell which wins out when PlayStation’s new PS+ launches in June, but for now, it seems to be a great contender, if not the winner due to all of the games that are promised to be available.
100+ games is a great feat. However, 400 to 700 games, depending on your chosen tier, is worth considering. Not all players are focused on streaming games, either, so you can still pay the same price as Game Pass Ultimate and get PlayStation Plus Extra, then game away all day.
There’s no doubt that Game Pass is brilliant, and that Xbox revolutionized the gaming subscription model, but it appears that PlayStation is coming back and bringing the big guns!
Looking for more content? Check out Everything shown at PlayStation’s March 2022 State of Play.