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Why Bethesda’s promise of free next-gen upgrades bodes well for Xbox Game Pass

(Image credit: Bethesda)

Bethesda has promised to provide free next-gen upgrades of its titles on current-gen consoles to the Xbox Series X/S and PS5 versions, with The Elder Scrolls Online and Doom Eternal first in line for a fancy makeover.

Bethesda made the initial announcement back in August, and has promised to share news on its remaining catalogue of titles which include The Evil Within 2, Fallout 4, Wolfenstein: Young Blood and Prey, to name but a few. 

Not all titles will be upgraded for next-gen consoles of course, but Bethesda has said that its teams are working hard to ensure backwards compatibility when the Xbox Series X/S and PS5 launch in November, meaning its games will be playable even if they don’t get enhanced.

After Microsoft’s acquisition of Bethesda, more of the publisher’s games are heading to Xbox Game Pass, with new titles scheduled to launch on the subscription service on day one. Doom Eternal, which will be one of the first Bethesda games to receive a next-gen upgrade along with The Elder Scrolls Online (ESO), arrives on Xbox Game Pass on October 1, and ESO is already available on the service. 

No Fallout 

Bethesda's commitment to make next-gen upgrades free will delight those who feared it could charge a fee like Activision are doing with Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War. Alternatively, some publishers like 505 Games have released new versions of existing titles, like Control Ultimate Edition, which is the only way to access the upgrade to Xbox Series X/S and PS5.

It's good news for PS4 and Xbox One owners who have amassed a big collection of Bethesda games, then, but even better for Xbox Game Pass subscribers who will be able to play every title in the near future, and likely looking better than ever.