Xbox has been very busy leading up to the launch of Xbox Series|S. One of the bigger things that they were doing over the course of the last few years was acquiring studios to bolster its portfolio. They acquired studios such as Double Fine, Inxile, Obsidian, Playground Games, Compulsion Games, Undead Labs, and Ninja Theory. Today, Microsoft and Zenimax Media, the parent company of Bethesda, and other studios have announced that they have reached an agreement to become part of Xbox. The deal is reportedly worth $7.5 billion and brings games such as The Elder Scrolls, Fallout, Wolfenstein, Doom, Dishonored, Quake, Starfield, and more to Xbox’s catalog of games.
Today is a special day… We are THRILLED to welcome the talented teams and beloved game franchises of @Bethesda to Team Xbox!
— Xbox (@Xbox) September 21, 2020
Talking about the announcement and what it means for Xbox, Head of Xbox Phil Spencer said: “Bethesda’s games have always had a special place on Xbox and in the hearts of millions of gamers around the world. Our teams have a close and storied history working together, from the amazing first Doom, and its id Tech engine, innovating games on PCs to Bethesda bringing their first console game to the original Xbox, the groundbreaking The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind. Over the years, I’ve had many deep conversations with the creative leaders at Bethesda on the future of gaming and we’ve long shared similar visions for the opportunities for creators and their games to reach more players in more ways.”
— Pete Hines (@DCDeacon) September 21, 2020
Pete Hines, SVP of PR and Marketing at Bethesda also spoke about today’s news, saying “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. 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.”
After almost a lifetime of working together, we’re excited to be joining our longest and closest partner, @Xbox.
— Bethesda Game Studios (@BethesdaStudios) September 21, 2020
Alongside Phil Spencer and Pete Hines, Todd Howard also released a statement about joining Microsoft. “Like our original partnership, this one is about more than one system or one screen. We share a deep belief in the fundamental power of games, in their ability to connect, empower, and bring joy. And a belief that we should bring that to everyone – regardless of who you are, where you live, or what you play on. Regardless of the screen size, the controller, or your ability to even use one.”
Todd also talked about how the next-gen systems are changing games and how they are being utilized for some of their upcoming games. “With each new console cycle, we evolved together. From bringing mods to consoles with Fallout 4, now over a billion downloads, to the latest technologies fueling Xbox Series X|S,” Todd Howard said. “These new systems are optimized for the vast worlds we love to create, with generational leaps not just in graphics, but CPU and data streaming as well. It’s led to our largest engine overhaul since Oblivion, with all new technologies powering our first new IP in 25 years, Starfield, as well as The Elder Scrolls VI.”
This news also adds a lot of games to Xbox Game Pass with more to come such as Starfield. “We will be adding Bethesda’s iconic franchises to Xbox Game Pass for console and PC,” Phil Spencer said. “One of the things that has me most excited is seeing the roadmap with Besthesda’s future games, some announced and many unannounced, to Xbox Game console and PC including Starfield, the highly anticipated, new space epic currently in development by Bethesda Game Studios.”
While Bethesda is joining Xbox, they already have deals with PlayStation with Deathloop and Ghostwire: Tokyo launching on PlayStation 5 first. Like Minecraft, which is available on multiple platforms, Phil Spencer said that “future Bethesda games will be on Xbox, PC, and other consoles on a case by case basis.”