Sony recently gave its PlayStation Plus subscription a massive overhaul, merging it with PlayStation Now and splitting it into multiple tiers spread across price points. Both are now virtually two sides of the same coin, with similar prices and catalogs of games so large you’d take years to explore it all. That doesn’t mean they’re impossible to tell apart, though, with several differences that can turn out to be the ultimate reason for you to pick one over the other. So today we stack the two services against each other to help you decide where you should put your money.
What is PlayStation Plus?
With the overhaul this year in June, PlayStation Plus started offering Essential, Extra, and Deluxe tiers on PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5. While the Essential tier is more or less the same as the older PlayStation Plus subscription and offers a couple of new games every month, Extra and Deluxe unlock PlayStation’s extensive “Game Catalogue.”
What is Xbox Game Pass?
Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass was launched back in 2017 and is available on Xbox Series X/S and Xbox One. On Windows PCs, it’s called PC Game Pass and has its own catalog of PC games. The subscription is divided into three tiers again, namely Game Pass for Console, Game Pass for PC, and Game Pass Ultimate, although only two of these are for consoles. Subscribers on all tiers get access to “hundreds of high-quality games,” Xbox Game Studios titles the same day as release, and online multiplayer.
PlayStation Plus vs. Xbox Game Pass: Game Library
PlayStation Plus’s library is easily the larger of the two with over 700 games while the Game Pass’s catalog is almost half the size, with over 300 games. Do note that the former’s library has a lot of fillers, with a bunch of games carried forward from the PS1, PS2, and the PS3, over to PS4 and PS5 as part of the Ubisoft+ Classics and Classics Catalogue.
Microsoft has a slight edge in terms of the speed at which its exclusives are pulled into its subscription, with fan favorites like Halo Infinite and Forza Horizon 5 being made available to subscribers on launch day. The company promises it, after all. Sony isn’t as fast, and several of its first-party titles like God of War Ragnarok were not included in PlayStation Plus when the subscription launched.
But ultimately, taking your pick comes down to which subscription’s tentpole titles appeal to you more. PlayStation Plus’s top titles include Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, Celeste, Dead by Daylight, Final Fantasy VII Remake Intergrade, Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales, Returnal, Batman: Arkhan Knight, and Bloodborne. And Xbox Game Pass’s top titles include Halo Infinite, Forza Horizon 5, Doom Eternal, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, Watch Dogs 2, Far Cry 5, Dead By Daylight, and F1 2021. You’d want to check out both’s respective catalogues, which you can find on the company websites and see which is more your type.
PlayStation Plus vs. Xbox Game Pass: Streaming
Unlike game catalogs where things are kind of subjective, there’s a clear winner in terms of streaming. Xbox Game Pass maintains an edge over PlayStation Plus in offering streaming without the need for a console, both on PC and mobile – you can literally play anywhere with Xbox Cloud Gaming. Meanwhile, PlayStation’s Remote Play is limited in terms of the devices you can stream to, and that too requires a connection to the console.
PlayStation Plus vs. Xbox Game Pass: Pricing
All other factors aside, the ultimate deciding factor is probably the price. Game Pass on console and PC starts at just Rs 349, while PlayStation Plus starts at Rs 499 for the Essential tier. It’s also worth highlighting here that PlayStation Plus’s entry-level subscription does not give you access to its Game Catalogue, only granting you two or so games per month. The Xbox Game Pass, on the other hand, gives you access to its entire library (minus EA Play games) with the basic plan. PlayStation’s top-tier subscription is also a lot price at Rs 849, while Xbox’s tiers max out at just Rs 499.
PlayStation Plus vs. Xbox Game Pass: Verdict
If you’re someone who plays games on both PC and console, then Game Pass should be a no-brainer considering the fact that it offers native titles on both. But if you are a console gamer, the choice is a bit more difficult. Xbox does offer greater value with its cheaper plans but it’s got fewer games, with arguably less diversity and perhaps higher quality. Meanwhile, PlayStation Plus is absolutely brimming with games, be it any genre, but is considerably pricier.