There’s been a bit of conjecture surrounding the details of the Zenimax acquisition by Microsoft and what it might mean for Bethesda developed titles going forward into the next generation. In an interesting interview with Kotaku, Phil Spencer opened up about Microsoft’s stance on the matter, suggesting that he sees a path to recoup the $7.5 billion dollars spent without publishing on rival consoles.
Though it’s been confirmed time and again that existing publishing deals for the likes of Deathloop and Ghostwire: Tokyo would remain in place, the biggest questions that were left surrounded the likes of the next Fallout, The Elder Scrolls VI, and Starfield.
“Is it possible to recoup a $US7.5 billion investment if you don’t sell Elder Scrolls VI on the PlayStation?” asked Kotaku’s Stephen Totilo.
“Yes,” Spencer quickly replied.
“When I think about where people are going to be playing and the number of devices that we had, and we have xCloud and PC and Game Pass and our console base, I don’t have to go ship those games on any other platform other than the platforms that we support in order to kind of make the deal work for us.”
While this doesn’t outright confirm that future Bethesda games will be platform-exclusive for the Xbox ecosystem, it definitely lends credence to the idea that Xbox is exploring the option to lock these games to their brand. It could be argued that this would leave a lot of money on the table as an Elder Scrolls published for PlayStation 5 would still stand to net money for the now Microsoft-owned studio, but it further emphasises Microsoft’s determination to make Xbox Game Pass a juggernaut and a destination service for the next generation.