Andy Hoyle/CNET

Next to the PS5, the Xbox Series X is the most difficult product to find on store shelves these days. Inventory drops still happen, but often with just a few hours — or minutes — notice on Twitter, and instant sellouts remain the norm. That’s why this announcement from GameStop is a welcome change: A “sizable drop of Xbox Series X consoles” will be available online through GameStop starting 10 a.m. ET (7 a.m. PT) on Wednesday, April 21. The “catch,” such as it is, is that these will be bought through the Xbox All Access program. 

Here’s what that means — and why it’s really not a catch at all.

  • Instead of buying the console outright, you buy it on a “subscription” program for $35 per month for 24 months (subject to credit approval). That includes a 0% APR interest rate. Read more about Xbox All Access here.
  • In addition to the hardware, the subscription includes Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which otherwise costs $15 per month. That subscription (which also includes Xbox Live Gold and EA Play) gives you access to an “all you can play” list of more than 100 games, including triple-A titles like Outriders, Doom Eternal, Grand Theft Auto V, NBA 2K1, all the Battlefields and dozens of others, with more added all the time. See how Game Pass Ultimate and Xbox Live Gold compare
  • At the end of the 24 months, you completely own the Xbox hardware, and you’ve paid a total of $840. That sounds like a lot, but you’ve actually saved $20 versus the $860 you’d otherwise spend for that combo ($500 console plus $360 for two years of Game Pass Ultimate). And that doesn’t include any savings you’ll also realize by not stretching these purchases on a regular high interest rate credit card.

Long story short, if you’re buying an Xbox Series X and you plan on doing any gaming beyond single-player silver discs, you’ll almost certainly get a lot of value out of Game Pass Ultimate. If that’s you, this GameStop offer is a good deal, and well worth pursuing.

Prefer to seek out an Xbox or PS5 with no strings attached? Check out restock options at other retailers:

  • Xbox Series X restock: Updates from Amazon, Best Buy, Target, Walmart and more
  • PS5 restock update: Inventory at Amazon, Target, Best Buy, GameStop, StockX and other retailers

Now playing: Watch this: PS5 vs. Xbox Series X: the ultimate comparison


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