Home tech how Xbox Game Pass saves you (and doesn’t) $1,000

how Xbox Game Pass saves you (and doesn’t) $1,000

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If you’ve been interested in trying League of Legends but have been put off by having to unlock over 160 characters, Microsoft has great news for you. The popular multiplayer online battle arena is now in action Xbox Game Pass. It’s a giant partnership: The League has been around since 2009, produced an incredibly successful esports spectacle and even transformed Netflix animated series. And the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate It’s CNET’s pick for the best games deal. This new partnership already makes it much better.

Existence League (and other Riot Games titles such as brave and Legends of Runeterra) on Game Pass isn’t a big deal on its own. League of Legends is free to play, so you can’t save money by accessing the game through Game Pass. However, you can access all League of Legends champions for free as long as you maintain your Game Pass subscription.

You’ve done the math: there are currently 162 champions in the league. They cost, on average, around $6.50 to unlock. That means you’ll save over $1,000 with Game Pass, compared to paying to unlock each individual hero. For context, that would take over five years of Game Pass Ultimate. You’ll also unlock new heroes as they release, usually around five times a year.

A few caveats to note: First, paying for heroes isn’t the only way to unlock them – the game lets you unlock heroes for free over time. You can choose one of five heroes immediately after completing the tutorial. After that, you can complete daily quests to get five additional heroes, choosing one character per day from a selection of three. Players can also use Blue Essence, which you earn once you level up and get the first win of the day, and can earn Champion Shards to reduce the amount of Blue Essence required. So you can unlock the whole roster without paying for heroes – very slowly over time.

Second, Game Pass doesn’t technically give you ownership of all 162 heroes, according to Riots FAQ. It unlocks them for play, but the game doesn’t consider you an owner, meaning you won’t be able to buy skins for champions you only unlocked with Xbox Game Pass. You will still need to buy the hero if you want to purchase skins (using paid Riot Points or free Blue Essence). Heroes and other content you unlock with Game Pass will have a special indicator separate from the content you own.

The icon in the upper right corner of each image indicates that the hero is available through Game Pass, but is not considered a “possessed hero”.

riot games; Screenshot by Adam Benjamin/CNET

In-game notification that user has no heroes

If you try to purchase a skin for a hero you’ve unlocked but don’t fully own, you’ll receive a notification.

riot games; Screenshot by Adam Benjamin/CNET

This means that if you end your Xbox Game Pass subscription, or if the partnership ends in the future, you won’t be able to access champions you only unlocked through Game Pass. However, heroes you’ve earned through new player quests or purchased with Blue Essence or Riot Points will still be available to you.

However, this partnership is a steal if you’re new to League of Legends or Valorant, especially if you already have Game Pass. (Valant Agents can also be unlocked for free over time, but cost $10 to unlock instantly. Players will save around $140 compared to paying to unlock new Agents, not to mention future ones.) try new heroes and agents. at will, and they can still permanently “buy” the people you really like for free, just by playing the game.

You can link your Riot account to your Xbox profile by going to the Xbox login page and logging into both your Xbox and Riot accounts. If you already have a Game Pass, you should receive a notification when you log into the game once the content has been unlocked. Riot says this process can take up to 24 hours.

If you are not already a subscriber, Xbox Game Pass For PC, it costs $10 per month, and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which combines console and PC, and also includes cloud gaming, costs $15 per month.

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