“Users from around the world will be the ultimate beneficiaries of this deal,” says Christopher Weaver.
Microsoft took the industry by surprise recently with the announcement of their massive $7.5 billion acquisition of Bethesda parent company ZeniMax media, and suddenly, they’re looking to be in an extremely solid position, especially in the long term. Particularly in a period where Sony have been investing heavily in tapping up major third party exclusives, including the likes of Final Fantasy 16 and even Bethesda’s own Deathloop and GhostWire: Tokyo (they even went after Starfield at one point, if reports are to be believed), it seems like the Bethesda deal is the perfect way for Microsoft to respond.
And that, in fact, is exactly what Bethesda’s founder Christopher Weaver, who was with the company until 2002, sees the deal as as well. Speaking in an interview with Inverse, Weaver said that if the deal works out as well for Microsoft as it potentially can, it will prove to be a “brilliant counter-move against Sony.”
“The acquisition of Bungie acted as an important trigger for the success of the early Xbox,” Weaver said. “Depending upon how soon Bethesda can prime the Microsoft pipeline, I suspect Microsoft is looking at their playbook and looking to repeat one of its ‘best moves.’ If the strategy works, it will be a brilliant counter-move against Sony. Users from around the world will be the ultimate beneficiaries of this deal. I wish them well.”
Looking at Bethesda’s catalog – including the likes of The Elder Scrolls, Fallout, DOOM, The Evil Within, Wolfenstein, Dishonored, and so, so many more – the strength of Microsoft’s first party catalog is eye-watering. Microsoft have said that whether or not upcoming Bethesda games are exclusive will be decided on a case-by-case basis, but it’s hard to see the biggest of those names making it onto PlayStation.
On the other hand, all future Bethesda releases will join Xbox Game Pass right at launch, driving up the value of the service to insane levels.