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Phil Spencer: "It would be nice to buy a Japanese studio"

The head of Xbox on Game Pass, the impact of streaming, and why he's not afraid of Google.

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gamesindustry.biz
yarbie10004d ago ShowReplies(3)
Obscure_Observer4d ago (Edited 4d ago )

Do it, Phil! Make it happen!

travestyj4d ago

They should try making an actual quality game before they think of buying another studio

Euphemism4d ago

Making a new IP? It's Microsoft we're talking about.

Capcom, Konami, squarenix and co. are out of question. Smaller ones like level 5? or the struggling Disagea team perhaps. It still would suck, because I dislike these buys.

Microsoft has no interest in creating new IP, it's all about game pass and for that they need games ... lots of em.

bouzebbal4d ago

To make multiplatform Games??
This guy loves to ruin the industry... Invest your damn cash to make games moron

mikeslemonade4d ago

Microsoft has a lot cash sitting on the sidelines. They have bought 15 studios since 2018. You people got obsolete logic by underestimating Microsoft.

travestyj4d ago (Edited 4d ago )

Lol my comment and the one above got botted the xbox fanboy. That won't help Xbox sell consoles.

mikeslemonade3d ago

Consoles sold doesn’t mean more money. Look at Nintendo who is usually profitable when they don’t even sell many consoles.

madpuppy3d ago (Edited 3d ago )

"^^lol are you an idiot? How does he ruin the industry? By making sony fanboys angry?"
-sixthelement

By buying studios and them killing then off 2 years into a new console generation is how Microsoft kills the industry.

NecrumOddBoy3d ago

What about Mystwalker? They did Lost Odyssey and Blue Dragon on 360 and they had Infinite Undiscovery from SE. Xbox also has a unique games in Japan. Those games didn't get much love after and sold soft even though they are good. Also Scalebound and Ninja Gaiden were thrown to the wasteside. End of the day, it doesn't make sense for these companies to put games on a console that sells so poorly and a lead exec team with messed up priorities. Xbox is moving to just be the Netflix of games with more focus on Game Pass than wanting to sell games or hardware.

darthv723d ago

@puppy... the only major studio MS "killed off" was lionhead. there were a few others that were tied to kinect games. when they axed kinect then they also axed those studios.

Other than that how are they ruining the games industry???

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nommers4d ago

I swear I hear “Last resort” playing more intensely by MS fans just wanting to watch the world burn at this point.

FishTank4d ago (Edited 4d ago )

Xbox gamers - do it!!
PS gamers - don't do it!!

me - it's your money. read xbox gamer reception though. if xbox gamers want this then do it.

Tacobell3234d ago

If Phil Spencer is even reading this thread then he's come to right place. where all PS gamers will say "no" to everything xbox and say "yes" to everything PS related.

Genkins4d ago

buy Konami and work with Kojima.

tekiz4d ago

Wow this comment went from 15 upvotes and 60 downvotes to 82 upvotes and 63 downvotes.

I'm sure no one is botting up those votes, nope.

darthv724d ago

The whole vote thing doesnt bother me at all. I really miss the way it used to be, with the open zone as well.

gamingunited4d ago

Yea, it used to happen a lot more, I assume it's the same person since it's always the same thing, Microsoft says something unpopular with most people on the site so he bots up votes. I remember times when the whole site basically wouldn't load because they were bottling up the votes so hard you could literally refresh the site and watch the votes roll in.

Juvia4d ago

It's not even subtle that there are xbots on here gaming the system. Most of us that have been around for awhile have seen this happen countless times.

This is precisely why so many of us detest Microsoft.

rainslacker4d ago

Yes. Do it. Stop talking about it, and do it. Spencer is great at talking about all the things he'd like to do, or should be done. He should just do it. Don't say anything until you do it, unless you're actually doing it. If you are doing it, stop presenting these things as some sort of pandering comment to try and act like you are receptive to new things.

More action. Less words. Just do it.

NXFather3d ago

When did any God, Any of them send a prophet to lie about his rank. Or how about this. When did any God tell us lucifer or any devil is number three?

Atom6663d ago

Again, rain, "calculated." Comments like this are less about pandering to fans, and more about using this stage (an E3 interview) to send a message to potential studios.

He's hanging up the "Now Hiring" sign. For the studios tired of whoring themselves out to would-be publishers, or the folks who are struggling with contract work, crowdfunding, and the inability to fund their ambitions: he's telling them that MS's money is waiting.

rainslacker3d ago (Edited 3d ago )

@Atom

If he needs to do this to get the message out there that they are interested in buying a Japanese studio, then he's doing it wrong. This is MS. They have people that all they do is research if there is a company out there that would be worth buying for any given reason...whether it's to attain a patent, gain a revenue source, or provide some software or service that they want to get into.

Spencer doesn't need to put out feelers like this, because they're already getting plenty of submissions for games, and they can easily look at that companies viability, and then decide if they want to explore an acquisition.

So, yeah, he's pandering to the press. There are professional portals and more private ways to get this information out there than doing it in an open interview. If MS just wants desperate companies joining them, then this is maybe a good way to do it, but I'd rather they seek out something that gets them where they want to be.

There's nothing wrong with putting out feelers like this. It's just more that he likes to make a spectacle out of such things.

Atom6663d ago

Giving an interview to gamesindustry.biz is a spectacle?

Either you're giving him too much credit or too little. Not sure. But I do know that he needs to step up his spectacle game if this is his method.

We see this all the time in a variety of business. Media and publication chatter and buzz are just as important to soliciting potential acquisitions as is sending out your own feelers.

rainslacker3d ago

Spectacle in that it's used to draw a lot of attention without much substance behind it. If he wants to buy Japanese studios, either say you are looking at buying them, or say that you are buying one. Saying like this is like pretending it's some mythical quest, or just some preponderance on his part, and like so many things he's said this gen, is just used to get the community hyped or worked up.

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JesusBuiltmyHotrod3d ago

People hoping for this are pathetic.

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BLizardXD4d ago (Edited 4d ago )

they funded Mistwalker. why not re-acquire them? seriously what were they thinking....
More lost Odyssey and blue dragon!!!

porkChop4d ago

Mistwalker would be a great purchase. They've been struggling since The Last Story. I'd love to see a new Lost Odyssey.

darthv724d ago

Platinum Games sounds about right....

tekiz4d ago

And that is why I think Nintendo shouldn't work with Microsoft.

darthv724d ago

Why is that? Did you not see banjo is coming to smash?

kellyanne854d ago

darth you don't know much about Platinum and the games they are currently making do you? I bet you really don't even care about their games and just want Microsoft to win whatever that means.

Araragifeels 4d ago

Hahaha! Are you joking?
Japanese games doesn't even do that well on the Xbox. Also I don't think want to work with Xbox after what happened with Scalebound. I would rather let Nintendo or Square Enix or Playstation buy Platinum Games than Xbox.

darthv724d ago

PG and MS made friends again so it's water under the bridge.

Lennoxb633d ago

Only Japanese games that don’t
do well on Xbox are turn based

bluefox7554d ago

Why would you wish that upon such a great dev? Scalebound wasn't enough?

Ceaser98573614d ago

After Scalebound PG will be far away from MS lol!

Segata4d ago

No. I do not want to see PG ruined.

nommers4d ago

Because them working together worked so well last time when they disagreed on how to make scalebound and Platinum nearly went out of business.

darthv724d ago

Can you really blame MS for pulling the plug on mismanaged funds and time? Even PG said everyone blaming MS for how it went down wasn't right. It's easy to jump on MS but PG was admittedly at fault.

rainslacker4d ago (Edited 4d ago )

@Darth

Stop saying they mismanaged funds. There isn't a single shred of proof that they did that. There isn't even any official comment that implies such a thing anywhere, from any company. Not MS, not P*, not a single industry insider. It's just baseless accusations because they also happened to produce the stellar Nier at the same time, yet people neglected the fact they have always had more than one project going at one time, and not all of them were stellar.

Just because they couldn't deliver on what MS wanted, and had development issues doesn't mean they mismanaged funds. Accusing a studio of mismanaging funds is a pretty serious breach of ethics for any studio, and I'm surprised Randy Pritchford is even still in the industry after he did just that. One or both companies may be at fault, but it is really wrong to accuse a company of it with no proof.

darthv723d ago

@Rain, well without knowing the exact details all we have is speculation. And that speculation leans more to the credible side than not. MS paid them lots of $$ and allowed them ample time and in that time they still had not progressed further along than their initial reveal.

all the while their other team was working on another project. So it can be deduced that the other project was progressing at a better rate and they likely moved some member around to help finish up on it. so that is a mismanagement of time as well as funds because the $$ they took from MS went to help cover the cost of shifting employees to the other project.

Yes it is a big accusation but there is some merit to it when you think about the time table for work on both scalebound as well as neir automita and even to a lesser extent... starfox zero. Scalebound is one that they had started long before either of the other two but it got put on hold until MS gave them $$ to work on it again. And Ms wasnt asking for real crazy things to happen. Adding MP is not that out of the question but it often gets blamed for the project not progressing. MS basically let them do it at their own pace instead of micromanaging them (people hate to be micromanaged) and look what happened. They saw it as an opportunity to let it sit for a bit and work on other stuff.

you seriously can't be that blind not to see that this is what likely happened. I say likely because they cant reveal the real details but again it makes way more sense than anything else. If you have a job and you choose to do a different job in the same time than what you are supposed to be doing... do you think you should still have a job?

rainslacker3d ago (Edited 3d ago )

There is no credible side which suggests that P* mismanaged funds. Even MS said that they were having developmental troubles, and couldn't work together. Developmental troubles in no way implies that funds were mismanaged, just that the studio couldn't deliver on what MS was paying for. They may have used every penny MS gave them for the production, but couldn't make it work. It happens. Quite often. usually it means going back and redesigning the game if a publisher decides to keep it going. It's not even an overly uncommon thing to happen.

You say all you have is speculation to make an assumption, yet you've pushed this narrative on several occassions. I say there is more evidence that they just had development troubles which MS couldn't support anymore, than there is evidence of unethical behavior, because there isn't a single shred of evidence that suggest they did something wrong.

It doesn't matter what way the speculation leans towards, because it's xbox fan boys who are making the speculation that it was mismanaged funds. Do people really think they put in an exorbitant amount of MS money into Nier? Why? The game was what I would say was a mid-tier game. Square is known to fund their games well enough. It was well produced, but Square gave them the money to do that, and I wouldn't say anything about it seemed like it was something that would be extravagantly expensive to produce.

P* has been making 2-3 games at the same time for years. Long before those two games ever started production. Sometimes they delivered on all of the, sometimes, the delivery was lackluster, yet never in the past were they accused of misappropriating funds in those cases. They even have cancelled games in there, yet not a single accusation. It'd be hard for them to get funding if they were known to do such a thing.

Why all of a sudden would people speculate the assumption that they couldn't hack that and had to misappropriate funds?

Oh...I know, because it removes any and all responsibility from MS.

P* may very well have been at fault, and not been able to deliver on the game as promised. But that idea is a far cry from doing something which is actually illegal, and unethical, and would likely have you sued into oblivion...especially from a company as litigious as MS. Even Gearbox could have been put out of business by Sega when they did what you accuse P* of doing, but the success of Borderlands allowed them to settle, so it never went to court. P* wasn't in a position to settle with MS if they had done the same thing, because despite Nier being popular, most of the profits from that went to Square.

There is absolutely no merit to the notion that they misappropriated funds. None. And no evidence to suggest that was the case. Not a single shred.

You can't say it's speculation, then say it's definitively fact because of some random time frames, which ignore P*'s past history of work doing multiple games at a time.

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AngainorG7X4d ago

Buy Platinum and give them money, independence and time.

Sevir4d ago

Likely won't happen after they cancelled the Scalebound, aaaand Platinum said they're looking to start self-publishing it's own ips so they're off the acquisition

gamer78044d ago

Sevir is right, they like having the freedom to create whatever they want, and I think this is good, the only mistake platinum is making right now is making games that are exclusive to one platform. They need to be totally free.

Sevir4d ago

I think being an independent studio, and being small, doing one platform at a time is necessary when you don't have the resources to do simultaneous releases. I think They know this which is why they in particular ink deals where they are able to do single platform releases, especially when they've got multiple projects in tow.

Astral Chain, Babylon, and Bayonetta 3. And who else knows I'm almost Certain Babylon will end up on XB and PC a year after the PS4 release.

tekiz4d ago

It worked so great the last time they worked together. I'm sure the Platinum staff especially those working to self publish will really give their best performance while under Microsoft.

I predict that would end much like Bioware under EA where all the leadership leaves and the games just become generic Microsoft games instead of unique Platinum games.

GrubsterBeater4d ago (Edited 4d ago )

I’m sorry but the terms “Microsoft” and “Independence” are like mixing oil with water.

They do NOT mix together.

Also, usually when MS gives someone money, it ends up being MS buying up a studio, and then proceeding to destroy the studio. Then there’s the possibility of their game getting cancelled or the studio being liquidated anyway..

In my opinion, MS buying Platinum Games would only end in disaster...