Microsoft has announced significant changes to Xbox Game Pass that have sparked outrage among gamers. The changes include a price increase for some tiers, the discontinuation of others, and the addition of new options, making the once simple service confusing and expensive.

On July 9, reports began circulating about an upcoming price hike for Game Pass subscribers in September. This news was confirmed by Windows Central, which also revealed other changes that were coming. One major change is the introduction of a new plan called Standard, which will replace the Game Pass console tier. The Standard plan will no longer offer day-one game releases.

Here are the key points of the changes:
– Xbox Game Pass Ultimate in the US will increase from $17 to $20 per month.
– The Game Pass for Console tier, which excluded PC games and EA Play titles, will be replaced by the Standard plan at a cost of $15 per month.
– The new Standard tier will not include day-one game releases.
– Some day-one Game Pass releases will be available to Standard subscribers at a later date.
– Game Pass for Console pre-paid cards cannot be stacked for more than 13 months starting in September 2024.

In addition, the PC Game Pass price will increase from $10 to $12 per month, but PC subscribers will still receive day-one games. Xbox Live Gold will see its annual price jump from $60 to $75, while the monthly price remains at $10. It is worth noting that Game Pass Standard includes Xbox Live Gold.

These changes have turned Game Pass into a complex and hard-to-understand subscription service with multiple tiers and restrictions. It may require users to refer to a chart and FAQ to understand if their plan will be affected, what changes are being made, and how much it will cost.

It is interesting to observe that these price adjustments are scheduled for September, just before the arrival of Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 on the service in October. Kotaku has reached out to Xbox for further clarification on the changes to Game Pass.