Months after it was first announced, Phil Spencer – head of Xbox at Microsoft – officially announced Tuesday that Microsoft had acquired ZeniMax Media, the parent company of eight development studios including Bethesda and id Software, among others.
In a blog post, Spencer states that Microsoft’s goal with Bethesda’s acquisition is to “give these teams the best foundation for doing their greatest work.” Additionally, Spencer wants to build Xbox into an “inclusive platform for all players.”
In commemoration of the acquisition, Bethesda released a video titled “Here’s to the Journey” celebrating its history and plans for the future now that it is under Microsoft’s umbrella.
What’s more, Spencer adds that some future Bethesda games will be Xbox and PC exclusives. Though the games were not specified, he notes that Xbox Game Pass will be “the best place to experience” the aforementioned future games.
Speaking of Xbox Game Pass, currently, there are already a handful of Bethesda games available including Dishonored 2, DOOM Eternal, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition, and Fallout 76. Will Tuttle, Editor in Chief of Xbox Wire, recently announced that more games will be available by March 12 such as Dishonored Definitive Edition, DOOM, DOOM II, DOOM 3, DOOM 64, The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, Fallout 4 and more.
That said, Microsoft’s acquisition of Bethesda helps boost the platform’s profile regarding title exclusivity. For the longest time, many gamers often chose the PlayStation 4 due to its strong selection of exclusive games such as the Uncharted, The Last of Us and Marvel’s Spider-Man series, among many more.
With Bethesda now in the mix, Microsoft can start building up its own vault of Xbox-exclusive titles to entice consumers to purchase an Xbox and Xbox Game Pass, which is a consumer-friendly value in and of itself.
As it stands, gamers can purchase Xbox Game Pass Ultimate – the top-tier offering of the service – for $14.99 USD and gain access to over 100 games for console, PC and Android devices. Also, this offering includes Xbox Live Gold, which is $9.99 USD by itself, and EA Play, a selection of EA’s top titles.
In all, Microsoft is taking steps to be a more prominent player in the console-exclusivity market. The acquisition of Bethesda – among other studios – is a step in the right direction. For fans of both companies, this is the perfect partnership. It remains to be seen what games will be released, but judging solely off of Bethesda’s reputation, expect them to be hits.