In this current-generation of console platforms, there was a bit of a lackluster response from Microsoft in terms of exclusive content that could really battle against the likes of Sony’s lineup. That’s not going to be the case going forward as Microsoft has really put their focus on gathering up new studios and IPs. Before the major purchases from Microsoft, the company has brought out a new studio called The Initiative and it’s packed with talented developers from studios. In fact, we recently reported about two Naughty Dog developers that have recently joined The Initiative on their debut mystery title.
However, it wasn’t long ago either that we reported on Microsoft’s purchase of ZeniMax Media. This deal really packed new studios under Xbox’s umbrella along with IPs. Easily the biggest studio included in this deal is Bethesda who is responsible for the likes of Fallout and The Elder Scrolls. Now after this deal was made, Microsoft made note that the exclusive deals that were set before the purchase such as Deathloop going to PlayStation 5 first, would still be intact. Furthermore, it looked like Microsoft may have been making games as a case-by-case measure.
Still, with a deal that cost Microsoft billions, some fans assumed that to recoup that money, Microsoft would be selling their video games on competitive platforms as well. Recently, Phil Spencer spoke with Kotaku where the publication asked if Microsoft could successfully recoup the money without selling the likes of The Elder Scrolls VI on the PlayStation competitor console. Phil Spencer reportedly was quick to answer yes.
I don’t want to be flip about that. This deal was not done to take games away from another player base like that. Nowhere in the documentation that we put together was: ‘How do we keep other players from playing these games?’ We want more people to be able to play games, not fewer people to be able to go play games. But I’ll also say in the model—I’m just answering directly the question that you had—when I think about where people are going to be playing and the number of devices that we had, and we have xCloud and PC and Game Pass and our console base, I don’t have to go ship those games on any other platform other than the platforms that we support in order to kind of make the deal work for us. Whatever that means.
It may seem that we’re not going to see these iconic franchises continue on with the competition. However, there’s always the possibility that Microsoft may release these games on competitors as we don’t know quite yet on their exact decision for the likes of the next Fallout, The Elder Scrolls, or even the upcoming new IP, Starfield.