A few weeks ago, Microsoft announced that it was partnering with EA to bundle EA Play with Game Pass for Xbox and PC. At the time, the company didn’t have a specific launch date, only saying it was coming this “holiday season.”
On Tuesday, Microsoft unsurprisingly revealed that the EA Play/Game Pass package would become available on November 10, the launch day for the Xbox Series X and S. However, that release date only applies to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate members. Subscribers to the PC version will have to wait until an unspecified time in December.
The Game Pass Ultimate bundle now gives users access to Microsoft’s cloud gaming platform, formerly known as Project xCloud in addition to its original benefits. Members can begin a game on their Xbox and pick up where they left off on their PC or Android devices. The advantage of having EA Play included is that it expands the Game Pass library.
Microsoft was also quick to remind users that thanks to its recent acquisition of ZeniMax, Bethesda’s catalog of AAA titles are to become available to Game Pass members, including the yet-to-be-released Starfield. Since ZeniMax also owns id Software, Doom Eternal is landing on the platform starting October 1.
Microsoft is hoping that it can hit it out of the park with its next-gen console. Leveraging multigenerational backward compatibility combined with making users “the center of gaming” with Game Pass and xCloud is a good strategy, but Sony’s not going to go down easy. Both companies have been running neck-and-neck on PS5 and XBSX pre-orders. The race to the top has just begun.