Xbox Live Gold to Discontinue: Microsoft Announces Shift to Xbox Game Pass Core

In an attempt to redefine the future of gaming, Microsoft is phasing out its long-standing Xbox Live Gold subscription, set to be replaced by Xbox Game Pass Core starting in September. This move towards the Game Pass Core illustrates Microsoft’s focus on leveraging the Xbox Game Pass for the evolution of Xbox gaming.

Xbox Live Gold: End of an Era

For several years, Xbox Live Gold has provided gamers with multiplayer gameplay, allowing for social experiences across various console generations. Over time, the service even started offering free games each month, forming an integral part of the gaming experience on Microsoft’s platform. However, it appears the gaming giant is ready to transition to a newer model of subscription.

The Transition to Xbox Game Pass Core

Xbox Game Pass Core is slated to offer similar benefits to Xbox Live Gold, with some added advantages. The new service encompasses AAA titles, including Halo 5, Forza Horizon 4, Doom Eternal, and many more. Furthermore, Microsoft assures the pricing during this shift will remain consistent, enabling players to retain access to games redeemed through Xbox Live Gold. Reports have indicated that the new service will be priced at $9.99, making it slightly cheaper than the existing options.

Key Features and Benefits

Here are some notable features and benefits that Xbox Game Pass Core has to offer:

  • Multiplayer gameplay.
  • A catalog of more than 25 games with new additions two to three times a year.
  • Popular AAA titles include Gears 5, Forza Horizon 4, and Psychonauts 2.
  • Regular deals and discounts.

What Does the Future Hold?

The migration to Xbox Game Pass Core not only signals the end of the iconic Xbox subscription service but also demonstrates Microsoft’s commitment to the Game Pass for the future of Xbox. With Microsoft planning to expand the list of games in the coming months, this development promises to be a treat for gaming enthusiasts.

Impact on Pricing

Even with the expected transition, alterations within the pricing system are imminent. The cost for Xbox Game Pass Ultimate is expected to ascend, transitioning from its previous $14.99 per month to a new fee of $16.99 per month in the United States. Similarly, the elementary Xbox Game Pass for Console will encounter an augmentation in price rising from its former $9.99 to an increased $10.99 per monthly cycle. Currently, Microsoft has signaled no intentions of modifying their pricing model for PC Game Pass.

What it Means for Existing Subscribers

Current Xbox Live Gold members will be seamlessly transitioned to Xbox Game Pass Core as of September 14th. The service will maintain its current pricing structure in line with that of Xbox Live Gold, namely $9.99 every month (or an annual fee of $59.99). With this shift towards the new subscription model, Microsoft plans to phase out the Games with Gold feature effective from the 1st of September. Consequently, owning Xbox One titles will necessitate an active subscription to either Xbox Game Pass Core or Game Pass Ultimate.

Potential Confusion and Clarity

Despite the many benefits of this shift, Microsoft acknowledges the potential confusion this change may cause around the online multiplayer aspects of Game Pass. While the Game Pass Core includes multiplayer, the regular Xbox Game Pass, priced higher, does not. This distinction may lead to confusion among users, making it essential for Microsoft to clarify these features to its users.


The termination of Xbox Live Gold marks a significant shift in Microsoft’s approach to gaming. The launch of the Xbox Game Pass Core is a testament to Microsoft’s dedication to providing a more diverse and evolving gaming experience to its users. The impact of this change, however, will only be visible once the transition completes in September.

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