The backroom deals are how Microsoft makes their money. All the infrastructure that the oil industry spends to drill for oil is very much justified by consumer perpetual consumption needs. Microtransactions arent going anywhere either. If Microsoft wants to crush Sony they could offer gamepass for much longer than their 14 day or 30 day trial. If Series X launched for $500 and came with a life of the box subscription that would get them the capital and mindshare they need to really take over the videogame market. Worst case scenario is the service is terrible with old 360,XBone, and a few new games 5 or 10 years from now. But that model still has them getting paid and they can kneecap the service when it comes time like they just did with Mixer.