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Microsoft won't try to buy industry dominance

Rob Fahey - "The Zenimax acquisition isn't the opening shot of a scorched-earth chequebook war; it's simply designed to ensure a steady supply of multi-platform third-party titles that are guaranteed to be optimised for Xbox and, more importantly, to be part of the Game Pass subscription. The pitch to consumers is that you can play these games on PS5, sure, but if you had Game Pass you'd be getting a great experience and playing them as part of your monthly subscription. This isn't Microsoft trying to brute-force a console war victory with its chequebook; it's a strategic acquisition designed to make Game Pass -- arguably its single biggest competitive advantage in the upcoming generation -- into a better and more appealing service."

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phoenixwing25d ago

If it wasn't for game pass's smart idea to allow you to install the games then I wouldn't have even bothered with it

darthv7225d ago

Remote installs are nothing new. Why would you change your mind now?

25d ago
phoenixwing25d ago

I don't have fast internet so downloading is important for the service to me. That's all I was saying.

bouzebbal25d ago

Industry dominance if they buy Nintendo and PlayStation. Xbox will remain in 3rd place as long as these two giants are still kicking.

lalalala25d ago

I understand that at the moment Bethesda is saying the games will not be exclusive, but if MS start losing quite badly in the console war, there's no doubt in my mind that they would start leaning on Zenimax for some exclusivity.

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blacktiger25d ago

umm Playstation Now also has download, before Gamepass

porkChop25d ago

That's not true. PSNow didn't add downloads until over a year after Game Pass launched.

Obscure_Observer25d ago

"umm Playstation Now also has download, before Gamepass"

Wrong. PS Now only has download for PS4 games, because Gamepass. Check your facts.

crazyCoconuts25d ago

@obscure if you're going to imply you're dolling out facts, stick to them. PSNow implemented downloads after Game Pass had them. Not necessarily "because" Game Pass had it. That's speculation

JackBNimble25d ago

All I know is as long as it's a ps4 game you can download it, obviously you can't do that with any ps3 game.

I would expect this is the reason we can download ps4 games from ps now and not because of anything MS did . Also when ps now started it was only ps3 games you could play. If I remember correctly it was shortly after Sony started putting ps4 games up that you could download the games.

UltraNova25d ago (Edited 25d ago )

Here's another fact for ya > MS only has X-cloud because PS now.

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25d ago
xTonyMontana25d ago (Edited 25d ago )

Yeah I know what you mean, I tried the PS Now trial in my old home which wasn't a very fast connection about 3 years ago and it was almost unplayable.

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ziggurcat25d ago (Edited 25d ago )

"This isn't Microsoft trying to brute-force a console war victory with its chequebook"

Yeah it is.

They didn't need to buy Zenimax to get those games onto GamePass. They clearly did it to keep those franchises from ever going to the competition again.

crazyCoconuts25d ago

I'm with you. They could have paid per game. Time will tell if we're right.

haget8779225d ago

I get paid over $90 per hour working from home with 2 kids at home. I never thought I'd be able to do it but my best friend earns over 10k a month doing this and she convinced me to try. The potential with this is endless. Heres what I've been doing,

HERE► https://is.gd/WeWork1

darthv7225d ago

Think outside the box. This really isnt about console at all, its about competing with other service games. Amazon, Apple and Google are all bigger than Nintendo or Sony. MS is stacking the deck against those.

ziggurcat25d ago

I don't believe that to be true.

sinspirit25d ago

It's not black and white. It's not yes or no. It's still about the consoles just as much as the other platforms and services.

Sunny_D25d ago

@ziggur

Darth is right. Those are trillion dollar companies and 2 of them have already showcased us their new cloud gaming devices. I have a feeling there will be some acquisitions happening within the next few years by a few of these big tech companies. There’s probably a reason Amazon introduced Luna the same week MS acquired Bethesda... Ugh. The industry is not going to be looking so pretty very soon.

Sophisticated_Chap25d ago

That's exactly right. If Microsoft doesn't buy these companies, then Google, Apple or Amazon will. Sony and Nintendo are small fish, and to anyone who doubts that, just wait a few years, when everything has been bought out by the big tech companies, leaving Sony as either a boutique gaming company, or ending up as a subsidiary of Apple, Amazon, Microsoft or google. Same goes for Nintendo.

25d ago
toxic-inferno25d ago

You're probably right. And your comment has made me realise that - even as a PlayStation fan myself - I'm glad that it's Microsoft that has bought ZeniMax and not Google or Apple.

derek25d ago

No Darth is wrong. You guys talk all this nonsense about "trillion dollar companies " who have greater interest in markets outside gaming. The platform you deliver the game on is not as important as the content you put on it. This has always been about content.

Livingthedream25d ago

Yup, those companies are giants, and are working on their own game services. MS is definitely doing the smart thing loading up on games to release day one on game pass. MS is looking beyond xbox at this point they want people on their service, xbox is just another option to get people to use it. I wouldnt be surprised to see it on nintendo or Sony's consoles of they're ever open to it.

Army_of_Darkness25d ago

@darth

Think outside the box?? Lol! Ms can't even beat out Nintendo or Sony and you think they have a streaming chance against Apple and Amazon?? 🤣

crazyCoconuts25d ago (Edited 25d ago )

Buying up the market to make the IP exclusive to your platform is a pretty simple power move. Whether you keep the games off of competitors consoles, their streaming services or both, it's the same thing. Buying up the industry to gain a competitive edge with the second biggest buyout in video gaming history. Nothing outside the box about that

ziggurcat25d ago

@sunny:

Not when they keep saying that they want Xbox to be the "best place to play." And how do you do that? By buying everything up to prevent those games from going to the competition.

MS has been slapped before for creating a monopoly, and this is just their first step in doing that within the gaming industry.

OG_TK_Cole24d ago (Edited 24d ago )

I basically tried to tell them this in my post. To them if it isnt SONY winning all the time, its not right. If Microsoft constantly worried about companies like SONY, they wouldnt have 7.5 Billion to even buy Zenimax Media. I'll say it again, Xbox Game Studios is a very small part of the business that Microsoft does. Out of all the companies in the Gaming Industry, Microsoft is the only company that has the money to compete with Amazon, Google and Apple.

The 4 companies i just named, are about to take Gaming into another realm. Why cant you guys see that?? Its obvious whats about to happen.

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ColeMacGrath25d ago (Edited 25d ago )

I assume this deal is a lot cheaper and wiser for them than to add Bethesda's games title by title on Game Pass, especially in the long run.

"They clearly did it to keep those franchises from ever going to the competition again."

They already announced the franchises will be released on other platforms on a case to case basis. Although I don't support the idea of them purchasing big third party devs if they will keep doing this. Hellblade 2 won't come to other platforms, which is a sign that they will use this deal to their own advantage with exclusives as well.

Others might assume that this move might be a way to make Bethesda's games perform worse on PS4/5 "deliberately", since they did keep mentioning their games will be more optimized for Xbox.

But who knows? We'll see what they do with it soon.

EverydayJoe25d ago

@Cole Cheaper?? Hahaha it cost MS double of what Disney paid for Star Wars. It was an insane amount of money for what they got.

ColeMacGrath25d ago (Edited 25d ago )

@Joe

I mean we're talking about several big name franchises including ones that accumulated hundreds of millions of sales, you'd assume that getting all those titles permanently added to Game Pass wouldn't cost them a penny, but it does and perhaps more than $7b along with a ton of licensing work. So not only this might've saved them some, but they also get to have franchises added a lot faster with this acquisition.

derek25d ago

@Cole, those franchises do not accumulate 100s of millions of sales not even close.

TheGreatGazoo3025d ago

I think people are really reading into that comment too much. "Case by case" likely means "is it a games as a service game that needs a massive player base to hang around for a decade like TES Online, Minecraft, or Fallout 76?" If yes, goes everywhere. If it's not, exclusive to the Xbox platform. Doesn't make sense to put single player IPs on the competition. MS could care less about 10 million more Elder Scrolls sales on PS. If those games being exclusive to the Xbox Platform means 1 million more GamePass subscribers, that a minimum of $10 million per month.

darthv7225d ago

@joe, your point is valid if only Disney bought SW and that was it but they also bought Marvel for the other half. So Disney got two for what MS paid for one. But that one was actually comprised of eight individual entities.

So it isnt nearly as bad as you think. That comes down to less than $1b per studio.

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SyntheticForm25d ago

It's true.

I also doubt very seriously that certain Bethesda games, if any, will come to PS5. You don't just spend 7.5 billion dollars to give Sony rights to the works of the studios you plunked down all that cash for.

Sure, they could make money doing so, but they can also make money not doing so.

Obscure_Observer25d ago

"They clearly did it to keep those franchises from ever going to the competition again."

You know what they say:

*Don´t poke the Bear!*

Sony has been paying publishers and developers to keep full games, characters and in-game contents off Xbox consoles for far too long.

Now they´re facing the consequences of their acts.

RazzerRedux25d ago

You know what they say:

"Don't cut off your nose to spite your face"

Microsoft is just as guilty as money hatting as anyone. But the acquisition of Zenimax has nothing the do with something so petty. Corporations make multi-billion dollar purchases in order to make more money off their investment. And to make money off this, Microsoft would be silly/stupid to remove what is probably Zenimax's single largest revenue stream: PlayStation. Damn sure hasn't been Xbox.

Sunny_D25d ago

Lol, the most fanboy comment I ever read. This obviously reads like someone who doesn’t know how businesses operate. Sorry MS doesn’t think “they are poking our bear, we need to retaliate” That’s fanboy drivel. You’re just asking for more consolidation in the industry by the other tech giants or even Sony and split up the industry even more. But no go ahead, you can continue personifying these corporations.

derek25d ago

Microsoft has been doing the exact same thing.

mrsolidsteel2025d ago

@Obscure

Yeah that makes perfect sense, MS got tired of Sony going to these devs and publishers paying for exclusive content for their system, something that they themselves was the poster child for during the 360 days.

So all sudden, they got tired of that trend, (again a trend that they started) and decided to buy a third party developer to keep all of those games off Sony’s system.

If you believe that, you’re really stupid.

Obscure_Observer25d ago (Edited 25d ago )

@RazzerRedux

"And to make money off this, Microsoft would be silly/stupid to remove what is probably Zenimax's single largest revenue stream: PlayStation. Damn sure hasn't been Xbox."

Lol. Whatever you say, dude. Best of luck to you on trying to convince a trillion dollar company on what´s best for theirs business. Just don´t act all surprised when you found out that Elder Scrolls VI and Starfield will not be available on Playstation, because apparently, Phil Spencer don´t seem to care how you feel or think about his company. Here:

https://pbs.twimg.com/media...

https://twitter.com/_XboxNe...

RazzerRedux25d ago

Is that why Minecraft is still on PS? Is that why Xbox games are on Steam? Cuz.....Xbox ecosystem? lol. Microsoft has already shown to be more in line with what I've said in "what's best" with (the multi-billion dollar portion of) their trillion dollar company than you would like to believe unfortunately. You can take those words from Spencer and pretend they make a definitive statement about where Microsoft is going with these studios, but it certainly isn't that at all.

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SyntheticForm25d ago

@Sunny

As long as Sony stay in their lane and don't lose what makes them special, I almost don't care what anyone else does. This lane has taken them this far after all. Dominance with grace.

I just fear that with bad leadership they could panic and lose what makes them special. Hopefully it doesn't come to that.

Sunny_D25d ago

Oh I agree. Don’t think I played any Bethesda game since Skyrim. I think I remember playing the first Dishonored that I borrowed from a friend but never finished it. So their games never interested me other than maybe ES6.

Vegamyster25d ago

Between the PS3/PS4 version of Skyrim there is around 10 million sales, Fallout 4 did over 8 million. There is just too much money on the table to do that, they will most likely incentivize you to buy there console with early releases, DLC or other perks ect.

Tedakin25d ago (Edited 25d ago )

That's what I've said. If they were going to allow the games on other consoles, they could have just given Bethesda a way smaller amount of money to buy timed exclusivity on all their games. They bought the entire company and they did so for a reason. I assume they're waiting for E3 to drop the bomb that the games are Xbox/PC exclusive.

DEEHULK8825d ago

They wanted to get the IPs and there is nothing wrong with that. Now they have those IPs in their stable and they can do what they please with them.

Yppupdam25d ago

That has been Microsoft's M.O. since forever! Enter a market and dominate by buying out big players. Almost every technology the sell was acquired and rebranded. From MSDos to MSOffice and even DirectX all things that were NOT made by Microsoft.

As for buying out Development houses, MS track record is pretty bleak, I sure hope that they don't follow what the usually do and shutter a bunch of them a few years in a new console generation. I guess only time will tell.

Pickledpepper25d ago

@ziggurcat
But if sony had brought them, you would be sing their praises.
Buy both and stop all this fanboy crap.

DaveZero25d ago

Well I think if it does happen it's some justice for Sega. Sega was muscled out of the industry and sony had a huge part to play in the downfall of sega by buying up all the franchises and exclusives content. Yes Sega also made poor choices and faced to switch from the coin op to disc but Sony did alot of harm also.

I do firmly believe that it would be bad for the industry though and none of these console developers are innocent and make moves to combat each other, eventually someone falls.

This industry is best if it has as ma y competitive companys as possible. It's best for gamers for prices and choices that there are multiple devs and while I think some justice would be served, I'd also wouldnt welcome the move and I'm an xbox owner but do like sony games also.

ApocalypseShadow25d ago

Sega's downfall was done by Sega leadership alone. You don't see Nintendo complaining. They're still here and making money selling consoles.

I love the old Sega. But bad management and bad decisions led them where they are now. End of.

25d ago Replies(1)
strifeblade25d ago (Edited 25d ago )

These Sony fanboy worry articles are hilarious. You guys understand what this acquisition means at the start of a new gen?? Literally Microsoft can have leverage over Sony to put game pass on there system. Sony doesn't like it? Well Microsoft will make it more enticing by locking out games from Sony and keep them exclusive. The new gen hasn't even started!!! What better way to garner hope then to do it early in a console Gen. They can do literally anything that will give them a long term advantage. If exclusivity will work for them they will do it in order to build up the base early in the generation. You Sony fanboys are delusional.

xTonyMontana25d ago (Edited 25d ago )

Exactly, what a stupid article. Having said that though, Microsoft did need this sort of move if they wanted to stay competitive, gamepass alone this year isn't going to help them compete with Sony. You just have to compare the exclusives this year to see just how far behind Microsoft are and that's not even going into comparing metacritic scores of Sony and Microsoft's first party studios.

Extermin8or3_25d ago (Edited 25d ago )

I suspect so, I actually think the franchises were an added plus but not the aim. I suspect the real prize was their project orion streaming tech. It has uses and benefits for multiple divisions at Microsoft and would explain such a large purchase which was clearly decided so high up in company.

+ Show (13) more repliesLast reply 24d ago
Lionsguard25d ago

For all we know this whole thing could backfire on them with pretty great consequences. If these studios end up becoming the next Rare or Lionhead, it'll just make gamers distrust Microsoft even more. If Elder Scrolls 6 comes out and it's full of paid mods and games as a service, there's going to be a lot of flak thrown at Microsoft for it even if it was Bethesda's call.

-Foxtrot25d ago

If Starfield or Elder Scrolls VI come with an online in any form whether it's a full online experience or even co-op then we'll know.

ColdSin25d ago (Edited 25d ago )

Starfield was always rumored to have a form of multiplayer. It was even rumored in 2018 that there are 2 Starfield games coming out: 1 mmo and 1 singleplayer focused. So that is not exactly a definitive answer.

aconnellan25d ago

Yeah like some sort of-

*checks notes*

Elder Scrolls Online?

DarthZoolu25d ago

Would love Co op Skyrim. ESO should have been a 2 player co op skyrim

darthv7225d ago

Different leadership back then. Those studios were more/less being micromanaged by the prior heads of MS/XB. The current leadership is more hands off which translates into more creative freedom.

ShadowWolf71225d ago

Different leadership?

Maybe look who was running Xbox Game Studios.

ILostMyMind25d ago

It could be. But all games coming in the next years are already being made without Microsoft so, they are not Game Pass Quality.

Kaedro25d ago

I can guarantee you that will happen. Look at all the devs they've acquired and look at how their games are.

jairusmonillas24d ago

Bethesda was already struggling even before Microsoft got them.

Remember Fallout 76.

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Rimeskeem25d ago

They aren't trying to buy industry dominance, they are trying to advance the industry into something that a lot of people don't want, online, cloud, subscription based gaming.

esherwood25d ago

Yep, if they get there way you’ll no longer be able to purchase a game upfront. You’ll be nickle and dimed with micro transactions

Jericho133725d ago

How do you know people don’t want that? Gaming is already moving into the digital space (especially as both Xbox and PlayStation have digital consoles), so this is the next logical step. Look at other mediums, same process. Maybe old school gamers don’t want this, but (and I’m making a sweeping statement here) the mass market wants convenience.

Rimeskeem25d ago

I don't know, when I say a lot it's an assumption but given my likes I guess it's true.

Jericho133725d ago

Not sure if you're having me on, but you're mad if you think this website is a representation of the mass market.

Trust me, take your likes/dislikes with a pinch of salt.