On Tuesday, Microsoft announced Xbox Game Pass: A Netflix-style service where Xbox One gamers get access to over 100 titles for $US9.99 a month.
Following that news, GameStop shares took a tumble, falling just about 8% by the closing bell. Wall Street seemed to be showing concern that Xbox Game Pass would take a bite out of the retail chain’s lucrative used game business.
Now, Microsoft Corporate VP of Xbox Marketing Mike Nichols says that the two companies are in touch and now plan to come up with a way for GameStop stores (and other retail establishments) to resell Xbox Game Pass to their own customers.
Nichols tells Business Insider:
“We’ve been extremely happy with the response to yesterday’s announcement of Xbox Game Pass. We also know that our fans look for a variety of ways to purchase and try games and services, and I’m happy to announce that we are working with retail partners, such as GameStop, on offering Xbox Game Pass to their customers. We’ll have more details to share in the future.”
Without those further details, we can only guess, but it seems likely that GameStop and other stores will sell prepaid cards, the same way you can buy Netflix or Hulu subscription credit at the cash register.
While it’s still up in the air to what extent the Xbox Game Pass service will lure budget-conscious shoppers away from used games, Microsoft is signalling that it’s not willing to leave its retail partners entirely out in the cold while it works this new service out.
That is important, too, because Microsoft still relies on stores like GameStop to sell Xbox hardware and software to customers — for lots of gamers, GameStop is how they get their fix.