After getting a PS5 at launch, I was reluctant to spend any more on another console. With a five-year-old, who took over my old Xbox and usually the main TV as well, time was limited.
Fast-forward to March 2021, with the state of the world and everything else, the chance for an Xbox Series X appeared.
Having stacked a few years of Gamepass Ultimate, it was almost stupid not to have the Series X to make use of it and now that I’ve spent a good few weeks with the combination of a series X and Gamepass, and it has been a revelation.
I’m not here to talk about the excellent graphics or performance because I have a PS5. The differences are indistinguishable to the naked eye.
I’m talking about the removal of stress and pressure, that the xbox ecosystem has evolved into.
The financial impact of buying a full price game should not be underestimated. It’s expensive, you may have to buy 2 in a week in the holiday season, and they don’t always work straight our of the box any more.
Gamepass has led me to let go of these pressures and enjoy the games I choose to play. There’s nothing worse than getting the latest game and having no means to play it immediately because of the pressures of life.
Take Gears of War…
The last Gears I purchased was Gears 4. I hadn’t even had the time to finish it until I got the Series X, yet it was as simple as installing it and continuing right where I left off, with crisper graphics and significantly improved loading times.
Once it was off the pile of shame, Gears 5 was next, and it’s DLC. Removing the financial burden and time planning of gaming as an adult has returned the hobby to the happy place where someone else bought you games. You are basically Richie Rich if you have gamepass as a modern gamer.
Want to try an average game that really appeals to you? It’ll be in there, a triple A blockbuster without the price, it’s there, a blast from the past? As many experiences as possible are there.
Like Netflix, the pain of buying, then feeling obliged to stick with some games, is removed with Gamepass. There’s been games I’ve devoted minuted to that in the past I’d have suffered through because of the financial hit.
Take Crackdown 3. As a fan of the first and sufferer of the second, I’d wanted to play the third. It got terrible reviews and as a result, it wasn’t on anyone’s radar. With it just sitting in Gamepass, a quick 15 hr blast through and then uninstall was perfect.
This may sound like an advertisement, yet it is more the mental state that gamepass has returned to my gaming. It allows the PS5 to sit as the console for ‘sure things’. Games that you would be buying 100%.
The Series X has quickly become the casual gaming home. If you’ve only a few minutes to kill, or the spawn has taken over all media sources, a quick browse of Gamepass or a previously downloaded game like Katana Zero is just sitting ready to resume.
They’ve managed to distill the buzz of playing mobile games then deleting them if not necessary to the big screen and for the first time in a while I’m able to play different games and genres without going bankrupt.
It also means there are more games to review…