Game Pass 'family plan' is reportedly in the works

Image for Game Pass 'family plan' is reportedly in the works
(Image credit: Microsoft)

At the moment, a subscription to Game Pass in any of its flavors—whether that's PC Game Pass, Xbox Game Pass, or Xbox Game Pass Ultimate—is only good for one person. Meanwhile, a Nintendo Switch Online family membership can be shared across eight accounts, even on different consoles, and streaming services like Netflix have family plans too. Some kind of Game Pass equivalent is a much-requested feature.

Now, according to sources quoted by Windows Central, Microsoft "is moving ahead with an Xbox Game Pass Family Plan, which could be set to launch sometime this year." Apparently you'll be able to share access to this premium family plan between up to five accounts within the same country, with the subscription handled and paid for by one central account holder.

As Windows Central notes, there are plenty of questions still remaining to be answered. "For example, will there be separate Family Plans for PC Game Pass and Xbox Game Pass console, or will it all be exclusive to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate? And the exact pricing is also unknown as of writing".

Now would be a fine time for Microsoft to add something extra to Game Pass, as Sony has just announced a reinvention of the PlayStation Plus subscription service. It's not such great value for us, given that its Premium tier, which includes access to a library of games available on PC via streaming, costs twice as much as a PS Now subscription. Having Microsoft swoop in with a version of Game Pass that's even more attractive would be a slam dunk. 

Recent additions to PC Game Pass include Weird West, Norco, and Tunic. If only you didn't have to use the Xbox app to manage them it would be an even more tempting deal.

Jody Macgregor
Weekend/AU Editor

Jody's first computer was a Commodore 64, so he remembers having to use a code wheel to play Pool of Radiance. A former music journalist who interviewed everyone from Giorgio Moroder to Trent Reznor, Jody also co-hosted Australia's first radio show about videogames, Zed Games. He's written for Rock Paper Shotgun, The Big Issue, GamesRadar, Zam, Glixel, Five Out of Ten Magazine, and, whose cheques with the bunny logo made for fun conversations at the bank. Jody's first article for PC Gamer was about the audio of Alien Isolation, published in 2015, and since then he's written about why Silent Hill belongs on PC, why Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale is the best fantasy shopkeeper tycoon game, and how weird Lost Ark can get. Jody edited PC Gamer Indie from 2017 to 2018, and he eventually lived up to his promise to play every Warhammer videogame.