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Xbox Game Pass for PC subscribers get better ports of Nier, The Evil Within

Games have fixes, options not available for their Steam counterparts

Nier: Automata - close-up of 2B’s face
2B in Nier: Automata.
Image: PlatinumGames/Square Enix
Owen S. Good is a longtime veteran of video games writing, well known for his coverage of sports and racing games.

What’s one way to get a game fixed or improved? Put it on Xbox Game Pass for PC. Fans have noticed that the Windows PC ports of Nier: Automata and The Evil Within that Microsoft just added to its library offer substantial improvements or fixes that aren’t present in the Steam versions.

QLOC handled the Game Pass for PC version of Nier: Automata, and on Thursday the studio noted that it’s a port of the Become as Gods Edition, which launched on Xbox One in 2018. So, not only does it pack in all of the original downloadable content, it also features a borderless video setting that fixes the game’s resolution (it was janky in the 2017 PC version). ResetEra forum users have found that the game doesn’t appear to have the stutters or crashes that bother Nier: Automata’s Steam release, either.

As for The Evil Within, YouTuber Jigzaw_Killer, who speedruns the game on their channel, discovered a slew of changes that make its Xbox Game Pass version “basically a remaster,” they said. The Evil Within joined Game Pass and Game Pass for PC a week ago, after Microsoft closed the deal to acquire Bethesda Softworks.

Upgrades to The Evil Within’s PC port, per Jigzaw_Killer, include a first-person mode with a field-of-view option; low and medium camera-bobbing effect options; an infinite ammo mode; icon callouts when players are sneaking or using the lantern in first-person view; and a buff to stamina that lets players sprint longer. “The game also feels less janky and smooth,” Jigzaw_Killer said.

Nier: Automata was a technical disappointment on PC when it was ported to the platform a month after its debut on PlayStation 4. Square Enix never pushed out a patch to fix its numerous problems, so modders took things into their own hands and put together the Fix Automata Resolution tool, via Steam, which improved visuals and smashed a lot of bugs.

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