Microsoft on Monday 21st September 2020 announced there deal of acquiring ZeniMax Media. ZeniMax is the parent company of one of the biggest publishers in the gaming industry Bethesda softworks. The acquisition will cost Microsoft $7.5 Billion for the acquisition in cash. The news caught the internet like a storm. A few hours later it became the most discussed hot topic.
The deal is expected to close by the mid of next year, 2021. The announcement came just a day before the start of pre-order sale of Microsoft’s next-gen consoles Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S. Bethesda Softworks are consider among the heavyweights in the industry.
XBOX Gains Quality Studios and Games
With the deal, Microsoft will acquire some of the best talent, game franchises, and studios in the industry. ZeniMax has about 8 high-quality game studios and some of the best selling franchises like Fallout, Elder Scroll, Dishonored, DOOM, and many more. it should be noted that Bethesda already has some planned releases like Deathloop and GhostWire Tokyo for the next year.
Criticized time and again for lack of games on their platform, this acquisition can be a big game-changer for XBOX. XBOX acquiring Bethesda means they now have 23 studios and some of the best games as their property. The deal will make sure a constant and high-quality supply of games on the Xbox Console.
Microsoft also announced that post-acquisition all Bethesda published games will be added to Game Pass on launch. Game Pass is the service Microsoft is pushing the most for the last few years. It has already been a hit service and becomes unavoidable post this deal. Game-Pass costs about $10 a month with access to over 100 games. $120 a year is less than what 2 games will cost in the next-gen as next game games are $70 per game.
How This Impact Playstation 5
Phil Spencer, the boss at XBOX clarified that the previous deals of Bethesda with PlayStation will be honored. This basically means Deathloop a Bethesda game will remain a PlayStation 5 Time exclusive. Matt Firor, Director at ZeniMax online studio also assured the community of Elder Scroll online that every platform will be supported just like they previously have. This assures that there will be no immediate effect on PlayStation.
Phil Spencer also added that the game will be released on Xbox, GamePass, PC, and other consoles on the game to game basis. Todd Howard, Boss at Bethesda in his tweet mentioned that they believe in games to be enjoyed across the platform. Two bosses hinting that their games can come to another platform does give some hope.
However, being criticized a lot for not having exclusives does means XBOX would want to hold some franchise as exclusives to attract more and more gamers to there platform. Another possibility is XBOX can let Bethesda Publish some games across all platforms and earn Publisher’s cut on them. Whatever happens next, it surely is a big blow for PlayStation as some of the Bethesda games like Starfield, Fallout, Elder Scroll, etc were among the most anticipated titles by Playstation owners as well. What Major Impact on Playstation this deal will bring will unfold the next 3-4 years to come.