Microsoft has made its move to further expand the list of games under its extensive portfolio in the wake of the next-gen console wars following a $7.5-B deal to acquire ZeniMax Media, the parent company of The Elder Scrolls and Fallout maker, Bethesda Softworks.
In a blog post, Xbox chief Phil Spencer said that part of the deal includes the acquisition of Doom and Quake developer id Software, Wolfenstein creator MachineGames and Dishonored and Prey maker Arkane Studios. The move brings the number of creative studio teams under Microsoft’s belt from 15 to 23.
“Like us, Bethesda are passionate believers in building a diverse array of creative experiences, in exploring new game franchises, and in telling stories in bold ways,” Spencer said. "All of their great work will of course continue and grow and we look forward to empowering them with the resources and support of Microsoft to scale their creative visions to more players in new ways for you."
As for Bethesda’s upcoming exclusives for PlayStation 5 - Deathloop and Ghostwire: Tokyo - Spencer said in a Bloomberg interview that "Microsoft will keep that commitment" and will restrict these two titles to Sony’s next-gen consoles “for a fixed period of time before coming to Xbox.”
“We’ll take other consoles on a case-by-case basis,” Spencer said.
In a separate statement, Bethesda senior vice president of PR and marketing Pete Hines explained why Microsoft is the perfect fit for the company.
“So why the change? Because it allows us to make even better games going forward. Microsoft is an incredible partner and offers access to resources that will make us a better publisher and developer,” Hines said. “We believe that means better games for you to play. Simply put - we believe that change is an important part of getting better. We believe in pushing ourselves to be better. To innovate. To grow.”
“But the key point is we’re still Bethesda. We’re still working on the same games we were yesterday, made by the same studios we’ve worked with for years, and those games will be published by us,” Hines added.
Microsoft will launch its next-gen consoles on November 10.