Today, Microsoft announced that they have made a deal to acquire ZeniMax Media, the parent company of Bethesda Softworks, for $7.5 billion in cash. This means that Microsoft essentially now owns Bethesda and all of its games, including Fallout, Dishonored, and DOOM.
The acquisition will increase Microsoft’s total number of game development studios to 23, according to Microsoft’s latest press release. Xbox Game Pass owners can also look forward to playing Bethesda’s lineup of games as part of their subscription. This move should make Xbox Game Pass much more enticing. Future Bethesda games will also come to Xbox Game Pass on day one. This includes Bethesda’s upcoming space epic, Starfield.
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
“The key point is we’re still Bethesda,” wrote Pete Hines, Senior Vice President of PR and Marketing at Bethesda, in a recent blog post. “We’re still working on the same games we were yesterday, made by the same studios we’ve worked with for years, and those games will be published by us.”
“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,” said Head of Xbox Phil Spencer over on Xbox Wire. “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.”
This is massive news not only for Microsoft, but for the video game industry in general. The acquisition also might sway those who are on the fence about getting the Xbox Series X and Series S consoles. It’s great timing for such an announcement, as pre-orders for the two consoles go live tomorrow. For more on the acquisition, head over to the latest Xbox Wire post.