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Update 14/06/2021: A spokesperson for Xbox has clarified that the prices on the GAME website are placeholder only and shouldn't be considered official.
Original story follows...
It's probably fair to say that this new generation of consoles has gotten off to an... odd start. Leaving aside the fact that supply issues on both sides have meant folk have really struggled to get a PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X/S in the first place, it's been a strange few months with controversy from both camps.
Firstly, there's the fact that the Xbox Series X have been out for six months and there's not a single exclusive available for it yet. Halo Infinite was delayed, and most other new Xbox titles have been cross-gen. I'm all for that, personally, but not one game to show off what the Xbox Series X can really do in half a year? That kind of sucks.
Then we have PlayStation, who has been dishing out exclusives that serve as bold and brilliant showcases for the new-gen consoles. Demon's Souls was a sumptuous visual feast. Returnal really showed off what the DualSense can do. Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is so pretty I want to cry. The issue here? Pricing. Whether or not you think charging £70 for a video game is justified or not, there are a lot of people who simply can't afford that, and it's a problem for a lot of PS5 owners out there. That kind of sucks too.
To recap, then, Xbox Series X doesn't have any exclusives right now, and PlayStation 5 owners aren't too happy about what they're paying for the ones they do have. It looks like this strange balance is about to shift, however. UK retailer GAME recently updates its website with a bunch of listings for the Xbox Series X-exclusive games that were shown off during Microsoft's impressive E3 2021 showcase, and there's one crucial difference between these and PS5 exclusives: the pricing.
As per the GAME website, Starfield and A Plague Tale: Requiem - two games that are so far confirmed to be new-gen only releases - are listed as £59.99. Cross-gen games like Halo Infinite and Forza Horizon 5, meanwhile, are listed as £54.99 on Series X. For comparison, PS5 exclusives like Demon's Souls and Returnal are listed on the GAME as £69.99.
There's every chance these could simply be placeholder listings from GAME, but the implication is very much that Xbox will be charging a whole tenner less for its exclusives than PlayStation. Sure enough, Xbox Series X exclusives are listed as cheaper on other websites too. GameStop Ireland has Starfield at €69.99, ten euros cheaper than any of the PS5 exclusives on the website.
Pricing on Xbox Series exclusives have yet to be officially confirmed by Microsoft, but it's entirely likely that the company noticed the backlash to £70 PS5 exclusives and planned accordingly. We've reached out to Xbox for comment and will update when we hear back.
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