XBOX Game Pass for PC entered the PC gaming market a little over a year ago and marked a big step in Microsoft's renewed commitment to the platform. However, unlike Epic Games Store, Microsoft does not seem to consider Steam a competitor and is releasing their games on that platform as well.
We took a look at cross-platform correlated data to determine how Game Pass is affecting Steam using achievement activity of Game Pass subscribers across the two platforms. To put the data in perspective we included data reaching back 2 years before XBOX Game Pass for PC launched, and in addition to Game Pass subscribers' Steam and XBOX activity, we also included a data set of Steam users that did NOT subscribe to Game Pass.
Here's the graph:
Keep in mind that PlayTracker cross-platform correlated data is reliant on registered users and therefore is not perfectly random, so it may not be representative of the gaming population at large.
Here are the details we felt were the most interesting.
Game Pass subscribers were overall less active users - for most months, the non game-pass group had more achievements earned per user. However, the difference in Steam activity between the two groups is closing over time.
The launch of Game Pass increased the overall activity of people who subscribed to it - naturally most of that activity was on the XBOX platform, however it does not appear subscribing to Game Pass for PC negatively impacted users' activity on Steam, if anything it was the opposite as the overall trend of declining achievement activity among Steam users was slower for Game Pass users.
Game Pass activity is still increasing over time - many online have expressed doubts about Game Pass keeping its steam after the launch period which featured significant discounts and a trial period. However, this is not the case in our data set where XBOX activity for Game Pass subscribers is steadily growing over time.
Before we go, we'd like to point out once again that PlayTracker's sample for this research is not random since it relies on registered PlayTracker users to correlate Steam and XBOX accounts. However, we felt this was interesting data to share since we are not aware of anyone else having more reliable data for this interesting interaction between platforms. Hope you enjoyed it!