Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass subscription service has been an absolute hit, although many fans have wondered about exactly how large of a capital the Redmond-based tech giant has been pumping into the service to maintain a steady influx of new releases. According to popular games industry analyst David Gibson, games like Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy – which recently joined the service – cost around $5-10 million to put on Xbox Game Pass.
Gibson shared these numbers in a recent Twitter thread about the upcoming rumored PlayStation Spartacus reveal. To put that in context, Google spent upwards of $10 million dollars to bring Red Dead Redemption 2 to its streaming platform Stadia.
Gibson reportedly arrived at these numbers by talking to a bunch of Square Enix execs, although given the confidentiality in company matters such as these, there is bound to be some degree of error in the equation.
Additionally, he also talked about how the publisher will get only $2 per game on the service as opposed to $29 for the same on retail, making it unfriendly for developers and publishers on an economic level. Whether Sony’s upcoming rumoured tiered service solves this problem or not remains to be seen, although both are clearly different products with seemingly different target audiences (at least for now).
For all those who wonder where these numbers come from- I have been covering Square Enix as an Analyst for 15yrs and talk to them regularly. Terms of a Xbox agreement are confidential but these are my estimate based in discussions with Square and others .
— David Gibson (@gibbogame) March 26, 2022