Queue in the conspiracy theories that Rockstar Games is rolling out Grand Theft Auto 6 because the world's second-best-selling video game is finally back on the Xbox Game Pass.
Grand Theft Auto 5, one of the industry's most iconic open-world crime games, is back in the limelight with its reappearance on Xbox Game Pass. Subscribers are now able to jump back into the action-packed lives of Michael, Trevor, and Franklin on their consoles or via the cloud, making it a tantalizing prospect for the upcoming summer vacation.
After a somewhat transient relationship with Game Pass, this triumphant return marks the third time that GTA 5 has graced the service, stirring excitement among gamers across the globe. However, the length of its stay remains uncertain, keeping subscribers on their toes and adding to the buzz.
This return is well-timed, with July being a relatively quiet month for big new releases. It provides an excellent opportunity for those who haven't yet experienced the infamous trials and tribulations of the game's protagonists. Moreover, it serves as a thrilling refresher for those eagerly waiting for the release of GTA6, rumored to be dropping as early as mid-2024.
Interestingly, the announcement of GTA 5's return to Xbox Game Pass coincided with the news that Game Pass prices are set to increase for the first time since the service's launch in 2017. Effective July 6, the regular Xbox Game Pass for consoles will cost $10.99 a month with the Ultimate package priced at $16.99 a month. This rate increase has set the stage for those intending to purchase or renew their subscriptions to take prompt action.
Grand Theft Auto 5's re-entry on Game Pass includes an enticing twist. For the first time, it features the Next-Gen Update, which was part of the game's Xbox Series X|S port last year. This allows subscribers to immerse themselves in enhanced features, such as ray-traced visuals, higher resolutions, and that coveted 60 FPS gameplay. This adds another layer of allure to the already eagerly awaited return.
The game's availability extends to both Xbox One and the newer Xbox Series X/S consoles. The cherry on top is the ability to stream the game over the cloud, a feature that could be a game-changer for those who prefer mobile gaming. This seamless integration across platforms promises an engaging gaming experience for all.
However, not everyone is invited to the party. PC gamers are left out again. GTA 5 isn't on the PC Game Pass. But, at least, GTA 5 is currently available for a massive discount on Steam and playable on Steam Deck. Although hopes for an imminent PC Game Pass release seem distant, the prospect isn't entirely off the table.
While it remains unclear how long this third stint on Game Pass will last, it's a promising ride for those fortunate enough to jump on board.