Microsoft just added another publisher to its Xbox family – Bethesda
What does this mean for the future of games like Skyrim and Fallout?
Well, I certainly didn’t have this on my bingo card for 2020 – Microsoft has just agreed to purchase ZeniMax Media, the parent company of Bethesda Software. Yes, you read that correctly, Fallout and Skyrim are now Xbox titles, just in time for the release of the next-generation Xbox Series consoles.
Microsoft reportedly paid $7.5 billion in cash for the deal, which doesn’t just bring the Skyrim world under the Xbox family of studios, but also iD Software, Arkane Studios, Machine Games, Tango Gameworks, Alpha Dog Games, Roundhouse Studios, and ZeniMax Online Studios. Basically, it gives Xbox Studios a huge talent and IP pool to crank out future releases. Ever heard the memes about Xbox not having any games? Well, those memes are stale, like a Twinkie found in the post-apocalyptic wastelands.
I mean, think about it. The list of beloved franchises from Bethesda is huge. Fallout, Dishonored, The Elder Scrolls, Doom, Quake, Wolfenstein, Prey, and more, including future titles such as Starfield. That’s a huge pedigree added to Xbox’s already-huge list of Play Anywhere titles.
You might be wondering what happens with PlayStation here. I mean, it looks to me like only third-party Play Anywhere titles are also available on PlayStation 4, so what will Microsoft do with games from their new acquisition? How will this affect titles such as DEATHLOOP or Ghostwire: Tokyo, which have an exclusivity deal with PlayStation 5 at launch? Well, according to sources, it won’t. Which is good news for PlayStation gamers.
Well, Bethesda VP of marketing, Pete Hines, writes, “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.” The only thing to read out of this is that current games, with their platform deals, are still going forward as planned. Once those are released, who knows? Maybe Fallout 5 will be an Xbox Anywhere title and PlayStation fans of the series will have to make a decision on hardware purchases.
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