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Xbox Game Pass for Switch and other platforms ruled out by Microsoft

Microsoft will not be bringing the Xbox Game Pass subscription service to the Nintendo Switch or any other rival gaming platforms, the company has confirmed.

Xbox boss Phil Spencer, who has been on somewhat of a tell-all media tour in the last week, says the rumoured expansion won’t happen because the full Xbox experience won’t be available.

Xbox Game Pass depends on Xbox Live and the support of Xbox Achievements, which Nintendo and Sony, among others, won’t be embracing any time soon, Spencer said.

“The other competitive platforms really aren’t interested in having a full Xbox experience on their hardware,” Spencer told Game Star.

“In places where we have brought Xbox, like mobile phones like we’re doing now with Project xCloud with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, what we’ve done with PC with bringing our full Xbox experience there.

“We know when somebody is playing one of our Xbox games there is an expectation that they’ve got their Xbox Live community, they have their achievements, Game Pass is an option for me, my first-party library is completely there.”

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The strange but persistent rumour started as far back as February 2019, when Microsoft began offering Xbox Live support for Switch games like Cuphead, as well as supporting network cross-play before it became all that popular. Given Microsoft’s xCloud represents a push to bring gamers access to top titles in a greater array of tech setups, the alliance would have made sense.

However, Spencer appears to have ruled out closer collaboration between the two firms. We certainly can’t see Sony welcoming Xbox Game Pass onto their platforms, but it would have been a nice boon for Switch owners and a decent money-spinner for Microsoft.

Microsoft recently announced it is bringing its xCloud streaming service under the Game Pass banner at no extra cost, while Spencer also suggested the subscription model could see first-party studios get more experimental with their output.

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