PlayStation Game Pass Competitor Reportedly Planned by Sony

Published: December 3, 2021 1:30 PM /


PlayStation Game Pass cover

A new report says that Sony is working on a PlayStation Game Pass competitor, aiming to go head-to-head with Microsoft's Xbox Game Pass service.

Xbox Game Pass is a pretty solid value -- it releases many new, first-party games on the service on their first day of release and it most recently announced plans to bring one new first-party game to the service every quarter. Add to that its ability to be used on browsers, TVs, and mobile devices, and it becomes clear why Xbox Game Pass reportedly has over 30 million subscribers.

These numbers are not something that Sony can ignore. While it does give away some games with its PlayStation Plus service -- the latest batch was accidentally confirmed a bit early -- it doesn't quite have anything on the scale of Xbox Game Pass. That's going to change next year according to a report from Bloomberg.

PlayStation Game Pass slice

What We Know About the PlayStation Game Pass Competitor 'Spartacus'

As Bloomberg reports, the PlayStation Game Pass competitor is code-named "Spartacus" and it has ambitious plans to merge Sony's existing services PlayStation Plus and PlayStation Now into one convenient package while adding in new features.

Documents reviewed by Bloomberg indicate that this new service would effectively have three tiers available to customers:

Tier 1

Tier 1 effectively includes all current PlayStation Plus benefits.

Tier 2

Tier 2 adds a "large catalog" of PlayStation 4 games at launch and will later be expanded to include PlayStation 5 games.

Tier 3

Tier 3 will add extended demos, game streaming, and a library of classic games from PS1, PS2, PS3, and PSP.

While this is certainly impressive, there's another advantage that Microsoft has that is not addressed in this report: the ability to play on other platforms. It's unclear if this PlayStation Game Pass competitor would work on things outside of the PlayStation hardware ecosystem. That said, Sony does allow customers to use PlayStation Now on PC and it has ramped up efforts to bring its first party games to PC such as Days Gone and Uncharted 4.

As for what this competitor will be called, all indications show that Sony will retain the "PlayStation Plus" branding, but it will phase out the usage of "PlayStation Now." Simply put, this new Xbox Game Pass competitor would aim to merge PlayStation Plus and PlayStation Now, split it into three separate tiers, and streamline Sony's subscription services.

Sony has not yet publicly commented on this matter, but it's clear that it needs to step up its subscription game. Microsoft is raking in the big bucks by leaning into Xbox Game Pass and that's a piece of the pie that Sony surely doesn't want to miss out on.

Would you be interested in a PlayStation Game Pass competitor? What games would you like to see on the service? Let us know in the comments below!