In what must be the wildest acquisition in the video games industry of recent years, Microsoft is acquiring Zenimax Media, parent company of Bethesda. The acquisition, worth $7.5 billion USD in cash, will bring Bethesda and its many studios under the Xbox family.
Bethesda first started out as a games company that solely produces PC games, until they brought The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind to the original Xbox. Bethesda have been supporting Xbox Game Pass more recently, with both Fallout 76 and Fallout New Vegas available on the subscription service.
However, currently Bethesda has two games that are limited-time console exclusives to PS5: Ghostwire: Tokyo and Deathloop. Given Xbox’s policy seen in previous acquisitions, these deals will likely be honoured.
“Yes, it’s a big change for us,” said Pete Hines, VP of PR and Marketing at Bethesda. “But after taking a minute to absorb the magnitude of this acquisition, we’re going to continue doing what we know and love: making great games.“
“We’re going to keep trying new things. We’re going to take the same passion we’ve poured into what we do, and the passion that our community brings to the things we make, and do even better.”
The many studios included under Zenimax and Bethesda Softworks which is now under Xbox are the following:
- Bethesda Game Studios
- id Software
- ZeniMax Online Studios
- Tango Gameworks
- Alpha Dog
- Roundhouse Studios
“Like us, Bethesda are passionate believers in building a diverse array of creative experiences, in exploring new game franchises, and in telling stories in bold ways,” says Phil Spencer, Head of Xbox. ” All of their great work will of course continue and grow and we look forward to empowering them with the resources and support of Microsoft to scale their creative visions to more players in new ways for you.
Bethesda games, including upcoming titles like Starfield, will be coming to Xbox Game Pass for console and PC.
This is a massive move that shows Xbox’s intent of having a big library of games under their umbrella. Though we didn’t expect them to buy out an entire publishing company in one go like this. We shall see where will this lead. Maybe a Fallout New Vegas sequel now that Obsidian and Bethesda are sister companies?