New Xbox Game Pass perk is a big win for Marvel fans

Marvel Unlimited
(Image credit: Future)

Xbox Game Pass is already excellent value, offering access to hundreds of games for a monthly subscription fee, but it’s about to get more attractive outside of play time, too.

As part of your subscription deal, you’ll now also get three months free access to the superb Marvel Unlimited comics app, which is available on iPhone, Android devices, tablets and computers. Note that there is not a native Marvel Unlimited app for Xbox Series X, S or One – though you may be able to access some of its features through its website on the Edge browser.

If Game Pass is Netflix for Xbox games, Marvel Unlimited is Netflix for Marvel comics, giving you instant access to a library of almost every Marvel comic ever printed – aside from those released within the last 6 months. At present, there’s more than 300,000 digital comics available through the app.

As ever, there’s a catch. The deal runs until May 31, and you have to be a brand new subscriber to Marvel Unlimited – you can’t use the deal to top up an existing sub. But for everyone else, considering Marvel Unlimited is usually set at a monthly fee of $9.99, or an annual fee of $69.99, it’s a great chance to give it a try.

The building blocks of the MCU

If you’ve just come out of a screening of The Batman, then, sure, Marvel Unlimited won’t be for you – DC Comics characters like Batman, Wonder Woman and Aquaman won’t be featured on the Marvel-only Unlimited app. 

But if you’ve just read our how to watch the Marvel movies in order guide, and are wondering where all those magical stories came from, Marvel Unlimited is like a crash course in comic book history.

From the very first appearance of Spider-Man to the latest adaptations of Venom, Vision and The Avengers, you’ll be able to go through decades of story arcs, dip your toes into obscure back issues without paying through the nose for collectors prices, and get insight into the worlds of upcoming small screen stars like Moon Knight and Ms Marvel. It’s a great app on mobile devices in particular, where you can take advantage of its offline issue downloading capabilities, and a ‘Smart Panel’ option which fills your screen with the action of one comic frame at a time, giving a cinematic swipe through each story.

Beyond the games, the perks of Xbox Game Pass are stacking up. There’s a 30-day free trial of Paramount Plus in the US to sample the first few Halo TV show episodes, a 4 month trial of Spotify, YouTube Premium and Crunchyroll offers too. Pretty, pretty good.

Gerald Lynch

Gerald is Editor-in-Chief of Previously he was the Executive Editor for TechRadar, taking care of the site's home cinema, gaming, smart home, entertainment and audio output. He loves gaming, but don't expect him to play with you unless your console is hooked up to a 4K HDR screen and a 7.1 surround system. Before TechRadar, Gerald was Editor of Gizmodo UK. He is also the author of 'Get Technology: Upgrade Your Future', published by Aurum Press.