Valve President Gabe Newell says he does not foresee plans for a “Steam Pass”, but mentions the possibility of putting Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass on their platform. Microsoft has distributed many Xbox Game Studios titles through the Steam Marketplace since 2019, but Game Pass subscribers on PC currently need to use a Microsoft application in order to access their game library. Amidst the launch of their new handheld gaming console, Steam Deck, Newell has mentioned the possibility of bringing the Xbox subscription to Steam. If this happens, Xbox games can go handheld through the new handheld PC. Players with the Steam Deck can access their Xbox games natively through Steam or accessing the Xbox Gaming Cloud through a web browser. Valve’s own similar version of a Game Pass does not deem necessary though, according to his chat with PCGamer.
“I don’t think it’s something that we think we need to do ourselves, building a subscription service at this time,” Newell said. “But for their customers it’s clearly a popular option, and we’d be more than happy to work with them to get that on Steam.”
Head of Xbox’s Phil Spencer has playtested Xbox games through Xbox Cloud Gaming on the Steam Deck since he got his hands on one in August of 2021. The Steam Deck has the ability to install any software or connect with any hardware meaning players could have access to The Microsoft Store and Xbox Game Pass as well as their Steam library games.
Was @valvesoftware this week talking w/ Scott, Erik, Gabe about Steam Deck. After having mine most of the week I can say it’s a really nice device. Games with me on the go, screen size, controls all great. Playing Halo and Age feels good, xCloud works well. Congrats SD team. pic.twitter.com/q4hWBvkk85
— Phil Spencer (@XboxP3) August 13, 2021
Spencer’s overall experience with the device was positive and that playing games like Halo “feels good.” Newell and Spencer have since been in conversation about the collaboration. Newell said,
“We’ve talked to people there quite a bit about that topic. If your customers want it, then you should figure out how to make it happen. That’s where we’re at.”
Spencer has announced a determination to grow Xbox’s Game Pass on PC since 2019. Currently, the Steam Deck has been released for those who have signed up last summer with a reservation to purchase the device. Valve is reviewing the entire Steam catalog and letting players know which games work the best on this device so far.