gamer playing with a playstation 5
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Sony's new subscription service will compete with Microsoft's popular Xbox Game Pass; meanwhile, longtime Amazon Games leader Mike Frazzini has left the company.

Sony (NYSE:SONY) is moving ahead with a renovated subscription service in an attempt to compete with the popular Xbox Game Pass from competitor Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT).

The man in charge of gaming efforts at Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) has stepped down, leaving behind a complicated legacy and unanswered questions about the future of gaming for the tech company.

Here the Investing News Network (INN) offers a recap of March highlights in the gaming world.

Sony confirms plans for Game Pass competitor — will it stack up?

Sony will launch a new subscription service, Playstation Plus, with three different tiers offering users a library of games compared to the established model of purchasing individual games.

The three tiers will be known as PlayStation Plus Essential, Extra and Premium, with respective price tags of US$10, US$15 and US$20 per month. More games and services will incentivize the higher tiers.

According to GamesBeat, the starting tier will be similar to what Playstation Plus already offers, while the second tier will provide a library of 400+ titles, including games from the previous generation of consoles.

Lastly, the most expensive tier will give gamers access to retro games via cloud streaming. Cloud gaming has been described as the future of games, but its high-speed internet requirements make wide adoption difficult.

The announcement from Sony follows in the footsteps of what its rival Microsoft has already achieved with its own subscription service, Game Pass.

Game Pass offers hundreds of games on Xbox and PC for one monthly fee, and has significantly changed trends in game purchasing. Microsoft recently confirmed it has surpassed 25 million Game Pass subscriptions.

Amazon says goodbye to head of gaming division

Mike Frazzini is no longer the leader of Amazon Games after spending 18 years at the tech giant.

Amazon, like other tech companies, has become interested in accessing the gaming space more directly.

The company recently launched a pair of popular games: New World and Lost Ark. Both are massively multiplayer online games that have been able to garner significant audiences and attract regular players.

In addition to publishing its own games, Amazon's Prime Gaming provides bonuses for games it is partnered with.

“Prime Gaming is on a strong trajectory, providing more and more great content to players worldwide who are members of Amazon Prime,” Frazzini said on LinkedIn.

Bloomberg reported that Frazzini’s leadership came up short in terms of Amazon's expectations for its costly gaming enterprise.

Around the INN homepage

From around the web

  • Wired reported that Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) will be dropping the FIFA branding from its massively popular soccer gaming franchise. The change comes on the heels of the soccer federation demanding an increase in the trademark costs to license the name of the overseeing group. According to the report, FIFA has asked for US$1 billion.
  • Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) confirmed acquisition plans for Boss Fight Entertainment, its third video game studio deal in the past six months. “We couldn't be more excited to join Netflix at this early stage as we continue doing what we love to do while helping to shape the future of games on Netflix together," said a statement issued by the founders of the game developer.
  • VentureBeat reported on results from NPD showing that Elden Ring, a new video game from Japanese developer FromSoftware, has become a massive hit for gaming. Elden Ring sold 12 million copies within 20 days of its release. The game, published by Bandai Namco (TSE:7832), is a fantasy action role-playing game with a punishing difficulty scale set up by its predecessor, the increasingly popular Dark Souls franchise.

One last thought...

A difficult day has finally come for Nintendo (TSE:7974) fans. The Japanese game maker officially confirmed a delay to the much-anticipated latest entry in the Legend of Zelda series.

The new game is now set to hit the market in the spring of 2023. The sequel to Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, one of the biggest games of the recent era, has been top of mind for gamers since it was announced in 2019.

"In order to make this game's experience something special, the entire development team is continuing to work diligently so please wait a little longer," longtime Zelda series game producer Eiji Aonuma said.

The announcement was met with a mix of disappointment and understanding from fans, as the previous entry in the series also faced several delays in its lead-up to launch.

The delay was also felt in the stock market, where shares of the gaming giant fell as much as 6 percent in Tokyo.

Don’t forget to follow us @INN_Technology for real-time news updates!

Securities Disclosure: I, Bryan Mc Govern, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.

Editorial Disclosure: The Investing News Network does not guarantee the accuracy or thoroughness of the information reported in the interviews it conducts. The opinions expressed in these interviews do not reflect the opinions of the Investing News Network and do not constitute investment advice. All readers are encouraged to perform their own due diligence.



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