It's almost E3 and so it's time for game makers and platform owners to start dropping gooey morsels of gaming news. Microsoft dropped the first bit of chocolatey goodness this morning. The company has unveiled the price of Xbox Game Pass for PC: ten dollars a month, just like the Xbox version. However, at the service's launch Microsoft is offering it for half price. Five bucks a month doesn't seem too shabby for access to a bunch of games, if the titles are right.
To give gamers a chance to find out if the selection is what they crave, Microsoft has cut the price of the first month to just a dollar. At a dollar I figure I can't lose, so I signed up just to see what's available. What I found was a collection of good, if older, games and some recent Xbox ports. It's easy to see what's available because Game Pass games have a badge on the tile that reads "Included with Game Pass". Here's a sampling of what's there:
Many of these games you probably already own if you're interested in them. Fallout 4 is an oldie at this point, but Bethesda's post-apocalyptic adventure is huge and beautiful, so if you haven't experienced it yet, you should. Forza Horizon 4 is the latest in Microsoft's open-world racing series with tons of licensed cars, true-to-life controls, and great graphics. Also available, but not pictured, are some of the best first-party Xbox One games that are also available on PC. Gears of War 4 and Halo 5: Guardians are staples of Microsoft's console experience.
In an attempt to make Game Pass for PC work for all kinds of gamers, Microsoft has included a couple of titles that wander off the beaten path of AAA PC-killers. Human Fall Flat is a silly third-person walking puzzle / maze game that is endlessly charming and pretty challenging once you get into it a ways. Void Bastards is a cool-looking cel-shaded FPS inspired by System Shock and BioShock. While I haven't played it yet, the art direction made me start downloading. Sega's Shenmue I & II give me the warm fuzzies thinking about my Dreamcast. Yu Suzuki's sandbox RPGs are still fun today, if a little dated. There's also a little-known building-focused adventure game called Minecraft.
That's not everything in Xbox Game Pass for PC, though. We can't find a complete list of games on Microsoft's site, but The Verge has taken time to bullet-list the whole game list. Microsoft has set its E3 conference for 3 PM Central time, and you can watch it on Twitch. We're sure that there's plenty more to talk about. We'll be watching E3 as it unfolds and cover all of what's good to play on your PC during E3.