[Xbox] Game Pass updates announced July 2024 (new tier; no day 1 game releases on lower tiers; price increases)

You can't partially take up the FTC's argument. If you want to get behind them, you also have to embrace their view is that Microsoft has gained market power vis-a-vis its competitors in the market and can now more easily dictate pricing. A thing I know people don't actually believe, because they consistently say the opposite.
 
Nope.
The FTC/DOJ and the anti-trust laws Congress wrote for the FTC/DOJ are by far the strongest set of anti-trust laws in the world. The FTC has the power of in house courts, has the power to write its own regulations (the ban on non-competes) and has decades of precedent.
The results speak for themselves. The FTC got nothing. CMA could at least pretend like they had power. And the EC actually got some decent results for the consumers.
 
A 1st party only GP would have better chances of being integrated with other platforms but I still don't see it happening.
Developers/Publishers also compete for time. A PS customer buying GP on the Xbox/MS store isn't spending any money in the PS platform and might end up spending all their gaming time with GP games instead of spending money and time in the PS store/ecosystem.
If they can't get gamepass onto other platforms, the service won't work. They will never reach the subscriber count for the service to succeed because 1) their console penetration is abysmal internationally and the brand is on a declining trend worldwide, 2) they've already created the expectation that Steam/PS/Switch users will get their 1st party games, and 3) PC users have proven time and again that the bulk of customers do not want to go through MS' platform to get at MS games, which places limits on PC growth.
 
but there's no 81% price increase.

Then the FTC is right.

And yet they've still proven more successful in terms of eliciting real pro-consumer concessions in this case.

2000 laid off and base price increased by 81%, only an imcompetent anti-trust regulator would see this as a success.

Yes. Read up on Chevron v NRDC and SEC v Jarkesy. This has been a rough session for regulatory authority to say the least.

No, FTC/DOJ do not use Chevron.

CMA considering how things works in UK is the most consequential regulator, in fact I remember that you believed Microsoft-ABK merger was dead after the block because appeal was pretty hard.

That would have been the case if the CMA blocked, but the CMA have shown the world that they are powerless against the big companies, a little political lobbying from MSFT and they buckled.

Compared with this the US is a peace of cake, FTC or DOJ opposition just means a little more time and money spent for the mergers.

Its the opposite. CMA and EUC are very easy to lobby.
EUC tried to elect a big tech lobbyist as their Lead digital enforcer, was so egregious that the French President had to call them out to stop it.

The current FTC/DOJ are basically impossible to lobby and US anti-trust laws are so strong versus UK/EU, that Congress does not even need to write new laws for the FTC/DOJ to do major damage.

Corporations only have one option and thats to go to court, and while the judiciary is largely conservative, Biden has propped up a ton of judges and so corporations see more risk.

Not to mention, many do not even want to go to court due to the possibility of setting precedents.
Lina Khan said that 14 mergers were killed with the sheer act of the FTC investigating, they didn't even need to file a lawsuit.

The results speak for themselves. The FTC got nothing. CMA could at least pretend like they had power. And the EC actually got some decent results for the consumers.

Having the strongest laws does not mean results are guaranteed. Thats a fundamental misconception on how law works.
Considering what the FTC/DOJ go up against, CMA and EUC look like childs play.
 
US anti-trust laws are so strong versus UK/EU, that Congress does not even need to write new laws for the FTC/DOJ to do major damage.

Corporations only have one option and thats to go to court, and while the judiciary is largely conservative, Biden has propped up a ton of judges and so corporations see more risk.

Not to mention, many do not even want to go to court due to the possibility of setting precedents.
Lina Khan said that 14 mergers were killed with the sheer act of the FTC investigating, they didn't even need to file a lawsuit.



Having the strongest laws does not mean results are guaranteed. Thats a fundamental misconception on how law works.
Considering what the FTC/DOJ go up against, CMA and EUC look like childs play.

If courts are siding with companies could be simply because they're obeding the law, in fact judge Corley that decided against FTC was appointed by Biden 😄

About this specific case, definitely childs play was defeat FTC, it was so easy, they even rushed to court first, exactly what Microsoft wanted.
 
Its the opposite. CMA and EUC are very easy to lobby.
EUC tried to elect a big tech lobbyist as their Lead digital enforcer, was so egregious that the French President had to call them out to stop it.

The current FTC/DOJ are basically impossible to lobby and US anti-trust laws are so strong versus UK/EU, that Congress does not even need to write new laws for the FTC/DOJ to do major damage.
I don’t think that a year+ is enough time where I could read that the great and independent CMA will be the lead global regulator while the US falls behind due to how slow courts are, and later that CMA is easily manipulated and courts are great.

Things don’t change that fast, we can’t just believe what is most convenient to believe when we need to believe it, right?
 
I expected something like this to happen, but I would have been a lot more radical:

Game Pass 19.99$/month
gamepass on all platforms it is available on: xbox, pc (and I would expand to macos).
Online services for xbox consoles.
All games day one.

Game Pass Ultimate 299$/year
All previous tier options.
Battle Passes and subscriptions for all Microsoft games (WoW subscription, Fallout 1st...) plus selected season passes for third party games (Persona 3 Season Pass). If it catches on slowly make it the only option for season passes in your games. Eventually it's the only way to play WoW.
Cloud gaming for all gamepass games and all games you own on Xbox series consoles.
Fir 300$ you can buy at least 4-5 new games a year. Why would people need gamepass with such prices?
 
Fir 300$ you can buy at least 4-5 new games a year. Why would people need gamepass with such prices?
That’s the ultra premium option that includes the 99$/year Fallout first and the 10$/month wow subscription. And you’d still get Cod + dlc every year on day one.

Everyone who plays online on xbox would have to subscribe anyway and the more expensive tier is not particularly more expensive, it should be an easy upsell.

Xbox has lost the mainstream appeal battle anyway, all that it has left is to squeeze the users it has left. The only possible future for Microsoft is multi platform development + windows shenanigans (look at edge)
 
Then the FTC is right.
I don't follow?

2000 laid off and base price increased by 81%, only an imcompetent anti-trust regulator would see this as a success.
You're misleading with this 81% base price increase. One aspect was moved to a higher tier (day one 1st party) while another (online) replaced it in the new base (Standard) tier. Also consumers aren't losing the old tier if they're already subscribed so no change at all for tens of millions of subscribers. I personally don't think these are the right moves, for the consumer or the service's future, but please at least try to be honest about what's what.

An incompetent regulator would've walked away from this case with nothing. As FTC did.


No, FTC/DOJ do not use Chevron.
And what was that SEC case about?


Corporations only have one option and thats to go to court, and while the judiciary is largely conservative, Biden has propped up a ton of judges and so corporations see more risk.
Corely was Biden appointed. Sometimes it's not about political positioning, lobbying, etc. Sometimes it's just the facts of the case. FTC lost this case on the merits and frankly they deserved to.
 
There is a difference between defending MS for raising prices and not supporting whatever agenda the FTC is pushing.
The weird part is a certain group of users that use every single opportunity to hate on MS while praising Sony.
 
Why some here are defending MS for raising GP prices? really weird
Good to see FTC trying to at least question MS recent actions
FTC isn't questioning, they're claiming they were right on outcomes related to the merger even though it's obvious nonsense to anyone paying even the slightest attention.

Criticism of the FTC's continued poor handling of this case isn't defending MS. I would also say few are actually in support of the GP changes too, it's weirder how you came to that conclusion?
 
What FTC Saïd:

"The Federal Trade Commission writes to alert the Court to Microsoft's announced price increases in the multi-game subscription and cloud-gaming markets, which the district court found relevant to the merger analysis. Microsoft is raising the price for its Game Pass Ultimate product from $16.99/month to $19.99/month--a 17% year-over-year increase.

Additionally, Microsoft is discontinuing its $10.99/month Console Game Pass product. Users of that product must pay 81% more to switch to Game Pass Ultimate. For consumers unwilling to pay 81% more, Microsoft is introducing a degraded product, Game pass Standard, at $14.99/month. This product costs 36% more than Console Game Pass and withholds day-one releases.

Untill this it's just factual here.

A relative big price increase just after a huge merger is not nothing.

Now Microsoft being so weak in the console market currently make me think nothing will happened from this case.

The subs market is also showing it's limit and failled IMO to become that much relevant.
 
"Degraded" for Standard is an interpretation rather than a fact, it's not a clear degradation from Console as it adds online (previously a separate $9.99 subscription).

edit: Microsoft has issued a response to FTC's allegation.

 
Last edited:
"Degraded" for Standard is an interpretation rather than a fact, it's not a clear degradation from Console as it adds online (previously a separate $9.99 subscription).
From the moment peoples lose the main advantage of the service in favor of a higher tier we can say it's degrated.

It's obvious that these new prices are made to push peoples from standard to ultimate.

Peoples who previously paid GP standard are not those who mostly played online.
Those who like playing online where either just on GP Core or on Ultimate.
 
From the moment peoples lose the main advantage of the service in favor of a higher tier we can say it's degrated.

It's obvious that these new prices are made to push peoples from standard to ultimate.

Peoples who previously paid GP standard are not those who mostly played online.
Those who like playing online where either just on GP Core or on Ultimate.
This is literally an interpretation.

Also, those that previously subscribed to console (not standard) are grandfathered in and get to maintain their service. I'd also appreciate a link to the data on "Peoples who previously paid GP standard are not those who mostly played online", thank you.
 
This is literally an interpretation.

Also, those that previously subscribed to console (not standard) are grandfathered in and get to maintain their service.I'd also appreciate a link to the data on "Peoples who previously paid GP standard are not those who mostly played online", thank you.
Peoples who are currently on the old GP Console will be unable to renew theirs subs if it expire or if it is interrupted for whatever reason.
So it's not an argument.

Also the simple fact that on the previous offert GP Console + GP Core was more expansive than GP Ultimate is enough to prove that peoples on this configuration were close to 0.

Peoples on GP Console can only be those who are not interested in online.
 
I don't follow?

A 81% price increase is done by no one else and is therefore not a market reality.
It is MSFT's own calculated move.

It will be extremely easy for the FTC to get the docs to see how MSFT calculated it. We all know its due to COD on GP and having to make up the money for that.

You're misleading with this 81% base price increase.
"Degraded" for Standard is an interpretation rather than a fact, it's not a clear degradation from Console as it adds online (previously a separate $9.99 subscription).

No one cares what MSFT has forced onto the bundle.
Fact is users could choose whether to have Base GP and then get gold if they wanted. Now they are forced to have Gold, signifying a price increase of 81%.

And what was that SEC case about?

Its about the SEC's ALJ not FTC/DOJ.

Corely was Biden appointed. Sometimes it's not about political positioning, lobbying, etc. Sometimes it's just the facts of the case. FTC lost this case on the merits and frankly they deserved to.

Its very much about political positioning lol.
Biden/Dems know it which is why they are packing the Districts with Judges.

The Supreme Court in the US continues to show that there is no "fact" in law. Jurisprudence, aka what the Judge feels like, rules all. The same law is interpreted by the Republican SCOTUS vs the Dem SCOTUS in completely opposite directions.
 
Peoples who are currently on the old GP Console will be unable to renew theirs subs if it expire or if it is interrupted for whatever reason.
So it's not an argument.

Also the simple fact that on the previous offert GP Console + GP Core was more expansive than GP Ultimate is enough to prove that peoples on this configuration were close to 0.

Peoples on GP Console can only be those who are not interested in online.
Maintained service being guaranteed for current subs is absolutely something you can't ignore. Although FTC tried their best.

I asked for data because you can't say this for a certainty with all the upgrade pathways, promotions, deals, stacks, rewards etc between Gold/Core and Gamepass. Anecdotal but I didn't know anyone who subbed directly to Ultimate and the only ones I knew on it were Gold subs who stacked Console through different loopholes and deals. I've also known people who subbed casually on/off to GP while they maintained Gold subs, in reality Standard itself even is more like an upgrade to Core than a degraded Console.


A 81% price increase is done by no one else and is therefore not a market reality.
It is MSFT's own calculated move.

It will be extremely easy for the FTC to get the docs to see how MSFT calculated it. We all know its due to COD on GP and having to make up the money for that.
81% price increase is being done by no one period in the US market. Be honest for once.

I doubt Microsoft will be forthcoming with further documentation and it's unlikely a judge will grant FTC much leeway with discovery at this point and with filings this transparent. Good luck I guess, were there even a scheme to uncover.


No one cares what MSFT has forced onto the bundle.
Fact is users could choose whether to have Base GP and then get gold if they wanted. Now they are forced to have Gold, signifying a price increase of 81%.
It's only one element (day one games) having it's lower tier sunsetted. Standard includes access to the regular GP library of hundreds of titles in a package more comparable to the direct competition (PlayStation).


Its about the SEC's ALJ not FTC/DOJ.
Do you understand how rulings are applied in the US system? This is willfully obtuse, do better.


Its very much about political positioning lol.
Biden/Dems know it which is why they are packing the Districts with Judges.

The Supreme Court in the US continues to show that there is no "fact" in law. Jurisprudence, aka what the Judge feels like, rules all. The same law is interpreted by the Republican SCOTUS vs the Dem SCOTUS in completely opposite directions.
Again, this was a Biden "packed" judge, herself already knowledgeable in the industry. This isn't a right wing conspiracy, FTC just had a poor case based on poorer analysis. The loss was deserved, echoed by literally every other regulator on planet earth passing the merger.
 
I doubt Microsoft will be forthcoming with further documentation and it's unlikely a judge will grant FTC much leeway with discovery at this point and with filings this transparent.

MSFT won't have a choice when issued with court subpoeanas.
How MSFT calculated the price increase is fundamental to the idea of this merger doing consumer harm by raising prices, so it could be very likely the FTC is granted such discovery by an another Judge.

It's only one element (day one games) having it's lower tier sunsetted.

Hence the FTC calling it degraded.
D1 games is not just one element. Its a primary selling point of the entire GP service.

Do you understand how rulings are applied in the US system? This is willfully obtuse, do better.

Did you even read the ruling? Please show where its said in ruling that the SEC v Jakersey applies to FTC.

Again, this was a Biden "packed" judge, herself already knowledgeable in the industry. This isn't a right wing conspiracy, FTC just had a poor case based on poorer analysis. The loss was deserved, echoed by literally every other regulator on planet earth passing the merger.

Just because a Republican/Dem appoint a Judge does not guarantee alliance. It simply increases the likelihood of alliance.

Its telling that you have no response to the clear political agenda used by Judges in the highest court in the land.
Like I said, the same exact law, interpreted in completely opposite directions depending on the political party associated with the Judge.

FTC's appeal is to unwind the merger and issue an injunction all so that they can continue in their administrative court. So SCOTUS gutting another agency's administrative court powers is extremely relevant.

Except said ruling was only about SEC ALJ not FTC/DOJ ALJ.
A new case would need to brought up for the latter, which is already going through the courts.

Also FTC's ALJ is no longer consequential to this merger. Only way FTC can undo this merger is through Federal Courts.
 
Except said ruling was only about SEC ALJ not FTC/DOJ ALJ.
A new case would need to brought up for the latter, which is already going through the courts.

Also FTC's ALJ is no longer consequential to this merger. Only way FTC can undo this merger is through Federal Courts.
For this appeal, the FTC specifically say they want an unwind into an injunction to go back to finish up their administrative process.
 
Last edited:
Basically every service had the price raised including PS Plus. What gamepass price increase has to do with undo Microsoft-ABK merger?

This is nonsense.
 
i am just waiting for a more concrete date in terms of when we are actually going to get moving on this appeal being decided.

This was filed a year ago
 
MSFT won't have a choice when issued with court subpoeanas.
How MSFT calculated the price increase is fundamental to the idea of this merger doing consumer harm by raising prices, so it could be very likely the FTC is granted such discovery by an another Judge.
Judges do tend to side with law enforcement at these early stages but FTC misleading in their brief (excluding grandfathered subs, excluding the actual market at all really which is central to their original theory of harm under market power) plus the weight of previous rulings here, I'm not sure most informed judges will actually extend FTC the benefit of the doubt and allow another fishing expedition to go forward. It doesn't seem likely at all really, all FTC's really done here is said since Microsoft raised prices on something that vindicates their theories but it's a statement devoid of any real context or analysis and isn't even consistent with their primary theory of harm as Microsoft points out in response. Calling this a longshot would be putting it mildly.


Hence the FTC calling it degraded.
D1 games is not just one element. Its a primary selling point of the entire GP service.
It was but now the service overall is reorienting to be more market competitive and better answer the high end console market leader with a more equal offering. FTC's calling Standard a degraded tier because they essentially have to, Microsoft's defining it as a different tier as it changes what's included (online in, day one games out) to refute it being a clear degradation of Console.


Did you even read the ruling? Please show where its said in ruling that the SEC v Jakersey applies to FTC.
I read the rulings and the press analysis of both. I can only assume you didn't as you appear to believe these rulings are limited to only the agencies involved directly in these cases and won't impact the FTC.

To sum this up in layman's terms, SCOTUS has dealt two major blows to all government regulators and watch dogs by affirming that (1) ALJs violate the Seventh Amendment rights of defendants to a trial by jury whenever "punitive" action is pursued by any government agency (not only the SEC) and (2) interpretation and application of law falls to the judiciary over the previous deference to relevant agencies (executive) and reversing 40 years of precedent (reversing Chevron). These are far reaching decisions that will fundamentally change and greatly limit how all regulators can operate, FTC included.


Just because a Republican/Dem appoint a Judge does not guarantee alliance. It simply increases the likelihood of alliance.

Its telling that you have no response to the clear political agenda used by Judges in the highest court in the land.
Like I said, the same exact law, interpreted in completely opposite directions depending on the political party associated with the Judge.
What's telling, and alarming, is how you view the judiciary in terms of partisan "alliances" and appear put forward this is how they should function. This approach is exactly the central issue of today's corrupt SCOTUS and also why Judge Corely was such a shining example of how the courts should operate; simply look at the arguments, the evidence and rule according to established law free from political influence. The courts ideally should be apolitical and this is the reason SCOTUS holds their record lowest approval rating in history, because the majority clearly is not.
 
Back
Top Bottom