Microsoft earlier in September acquired ZeniMax Media for $7.5 billion, strengthening its Xbox video game and Game Pass offerings with the studio behind titles such as Fallout and the Doom reboot. As a part of the deal, the company also received intellectual property rights of Bethesda (or Bethesda Softworks) which produces titles such as Deathloop that is slated to arrive on the PlayStation 5 consoles next year. The acquisition, therefore, raised the question of whether the studio’s future games would release on PlayStation platforms.
When asked about Bethesda’s future with other console makers like Sony and Nintendo, the head of the Xbox brand and Gaming at Microsoft Phil Spencer had said the company would honour existing deals involving ZeniMax; however, he has also indicated that the future of the titles lies with its own gaming platforms like Xbox and PC. In a recent interview with Kotaku, Spencer was asked whether the company would be able to recoup the $7.5 billion it spent on the acquisition without selling Elder Scrolls 6 on PlayStation consoles, he replied yes. “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," he told Kotaku.
But that does not entirely mean that titles from ZeniMax, especially Bethesda would not come to other platforms like PlayStation, at least for now. As Kotaku points out that platforms for future ZeniMax games will be determined on a case-by-case basis, therefore, it is possible to see Fallout 5 on PlayStation 5 at full price but Microsoft may offer a large discount on the Xbox platform as part of the $10/month Game Pass subscription. Other than that, Spencer in the interview said that there’s no new update on the status of Halo Infinite, which was delayed in August.
Meanwhile, Microsoft started taking pre-orders for its upcoming gaming consoles, the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S on September 22. While the all-digital Xbox Series S has been priced at Rs. 34,990, the Xbox Series X costs Rs. 49,990 in India.